2014 town budget passes

No big changes ahead, but cost of utilities increases

The Dolores Board of Trustees has approved the 2014 budget.

The budget is arranged into four funds: the general fund, street fund, water enterprise, and sewer enterprise.

Total estimated 2014 expenses are $1,317,699, with total estimated income at $1,291,576.

The town has $693,701 in total reserves with enough in the bank to make up any cost differences in each fund estimate.

Town Clerk Lana Hancock said there are no major changes over last year, although residents will see slightly higher utility costs.

Water and sewer rates went up three percent over last year for in-town and out-of-town residents.

"We have not had an increase in several years," Hancock said.

One major expense on the horizon is the removal of built-up sludge at the town sewer plant, expected to cost $150,000. Hancock said she is hopeful that grants will help pay for a portion of the project.

Another big-ticket item is Phase 2 of the sidewalk project, expected to cost $226,000. Look for more sidewalks on the south side of Railroad Ave.

Larger expenses include the contract for law enforcement from the Montezuma County Sheriff's Office ($154,000), salaries and professional services ($268,780), and health insurance ($117,244).

Total sales tax revenue for 2013 is reported at $286,991, up from last year's collection of $268,056.