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College Place OKs 2020 budget

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College Place 2020 budget revenues graph

College Place adopted its 2020 budget for the year, totaling $51 million.

COLLEGE PLACE — City Council has unanimously approved its 2020 budget of slightly more than $51 million, a 1.9% decrease from the 2019 budget.

“The budget ... allows the city to cover its operations and maintenance costs and slowly begin to work on addressing the $77 million backlog of capital facility projects,” according to a letter written by Mayor Norma Hernández.

Anticipated city revenues reach $36,615,613, and projected expenditures total $35,545,073, according to official documents.

The city’s day-to-day funds are expected to be $8.8 million, a 3.5% increase over the 2019 budget, with $301,861 in the current expense reserve fund for a rainy day, according to official documents.

College Place receives 14% of its revenue in state and federal grants totaling $4.95 million. Taxes make up 15% of its revenue, at $5.56 million, according to official documents.

Wastewater is the city’s biggest proposed expenditure, costing $11.97 million. This will allow the city to begin the federally mandated wastewater treatment plant upgrade among other wastewater projects, according to official documents.

Water is budgeted for $9.6 million in expenditures, which includes wrapping up the construction to replace two drinking water wells for $5.16 million, according to official documents.

Other major expenditures are wages and salaries, costing the city $5.25 million. The southwest sewer trunk line and lift station capital project is budgeted for $5.5 million, according to documents.

The city is adding four additional staff members; three are full-time employees and include a deputy clerk, firefighter and water utility worker, and one is a part-time police records clerk, Brian Carleton, the finance director, said.

The capital budget highlights wastewater as the most costly.

Wastewater is budgeted at $8.2 million in the capital facilities plan to finish tree removal at the wastewater treatment plant, final design on wastewater treatment plant improvements, southwest sewer trunkline and lift station and sewer main lining program, according to official documents.

“Working together, we’ve crafted a plan that improves the quality of life of our community, strengthens the city’s infrastructure and continues to grow the city in a manageable and forward-thinking way,” Hernández said in her budget letter.

Chloe LeValley can be reached at or 509-526-8326.

Chloe LeValley covers the cities of Walla Walla and College Place as well as agriculture and the environment in the Walla Walla Valley. She is a graduate of San Francisco State University and joined the Union-Bulletin's team in October 2019.