The Sterling Heights City Council will discuss the Proposed 2018/19 City Budget prioritizes investments in roads and infrastructure during a special budget meeting beginning at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 10 at City Hall.
The proposed spending plan for the fiscal year beginning July 1 totals $231.3 million – an increase of $24.8 million or 12 percent. The budget funds 477 full-time positions, a net increase of 6 positions. The City has reduced funding for 172 full-time positions or 27 percent of its workforce since 2002, saving $13.4 million annually. The City continues to fully fund post-retirement legacy costs and make significant progress toward reducing unfunded liabilities.
The budget also continues to restore public safety capital funding that had been scaled back and delayed due to revenue declines. Funds are budgeted to replace 9 Police vehicles, a fire engine and over 380 portable and mobile radios for all police and fire personnel. The final six emergency warning sirens and the citywide phone system will also be replaced.
The budget funds significant infrastructure investments including a total of $20 million in road improvements, continues Parks & Recreation improvements funded through the Recreating Recreation millage, and funds various facility maintenance upgrades at the Police Department, Public Library, 41-A District Court, and City Hall.
The budget prioritizes funding for road repairs. Planned projects include:
- Dodge Park Road from 15 Mile to Metro Parkway
- North Van Dyke from 18 ½ Mile to M-59
- Stadler Drive
- Merrill Road from 19 Mile to M-59
- Mound Road from 14 Mile to 18 Mile Road
- Neighborhood Road improvements totaling $4.2 million
Although this investment in roads is significant, more is needed, in large part to fund the City’s local match required to accelerate County road improvements due to rapid deterioration over the last year. As such, the proposed budget includes a one-time 1 mill increase that will raise nearly $4.2 million and will be dedicated to fund more road improvements. The additional roads that will be repaired as a result of this proposed funding include:
- Schoenherr Road from Plumbrook to 19 Mile
- 15 Mile Road from Maple Lane to Schoenherr
- 17 Mile Road from Van Dyke to Utica Road
- 19 Mile Road from Hayes to Schoenherr Road
- Utica Road from Schoenherr to Van Dyke Avenue
- Metro Parkway Repairs
The total City tax rate will increase 1.0119 mills and will cost the average homeowner $7.67 per month for a total of $92. The 1 mill increase for road funding will be rolled back next year to limit the increase to one year only.
Despite this one time temporary increase, the City’s tax rate continues to be lower than most cities in the State and 6.4 mills lower than the average of all cities in Macomb County.
According to City Manager, Mark Vanderpool, “Sterling Heights is on an exciting path to the future investing in quality of life services for residents, fostering an environment where businesses can not only survive but thrive, resulting in billions in new manufacturing and commercial investments over the past five years. The investments have resulted in high paying jobs throughout numerous sectors. The proposed budget not only continues the City’s successful economic development services but also continues funding for new public safety services including the Community Outreach & Engagement (CORE) program and a new SMART Moves program designed for elementary school students. Despite the State’s continued dis-investment in cities, the proposed budget continues progress toward financial stability and major investments in our ageing infrastructure.”
A series of budget workshops will be held prior to the budget adoption on May 1. The workshop schedule and a copy of the proposed budget document are available under “City Budget” on the City’s website at www.sterling-heights.net.
All budget workshops will take place in the Council Chambers, located on the upper level of City Hall (40555 Utica Road). All meetings will be televised live on Sterling Heights Television (SHTV), Channel 5 – Comcast, Channel 10 – WOW!, Channel 99 – AT&T U-verse, and will be rebroadcast throughout the week on SHTV. Meetings are available for viewing over the Internet the following business day on SHTV On-Demand at www.sterling-heights.net.
Media with questions can contact Community Relations Director Bridget Kozlowski at (586)446-2471 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.