The Solvang City Council will receive its second quarter financial report and be recommended to approve budget adjustments in tonight’s regular meeting.
The staff report says that the city’s net financial position remains “strong with strong reserves,” but financial statements as of June 30, 2020 showed a reduction in net financial position rather than growth.
“The TOT projection through June 20, 2021 is conservatively bleak,” the staff report says.
Staff proposes the following two-budget adjustments: 1) reducing legal fees for the General Fund by $50,000 and 2) increasing the budget for public bathroom cleaning by $10,000.
If council approves those adjustments, the expected net fiscal impact to the General Fund would result in a positive $107,467 as of June 30, 2021, meaning the projected revenues will exceed projected authorized expenditures.
“This amount could be allocated toward expenditures and the budget would still be balanced (revenues meet expenditures),” the staff report reads.
In other business, the council will receive a report on Sign Ordinance enforcement and city COVID-19 policies for sign regulations. The report aims to inform the council of current permitting procedures for signs, temporarily modified for COVID-19, and to receive policy direction from the council going forward.
“Due to COVID-19 Public Health Orders, tourism has been greatly diminished, especially in ‘purple’ most restrictive tier and when stay-at-home orders are in place. Quickly changing guidelines also lead to constant changes in business operations, which are difficult for customers to follow. Thus, visual signage has become the most effective way for businesses to communicate their availability,” the staff report says. “Without the relaxed enforcement under COVID-19, directional signs and banner type of signs would not be allowed.”
The council will decide whether to continue to allow directional signs and banner type of signs during COVID-19.
Staff will provide the council with a COVID-19 update and request policy direction as well.
Council members will be asked to consider approving an allocation and a budget adjustment to assist local nonprofit organizations in providing food to those in need during COVID-19.
Staff does not believe that the city would be eligible for reimbursement of expenses for food distribution, but the council could allocate funds as an immediate grant to help local organizations fund the costs. A commitment of $10,000 could be allocated as a grant to Bethania Church, which expressed in an earlier meeting that there is an increasing financial need.
Solvang’s Grant Funding Policy for Fiscal Year 2021-22 will be reviewed at the meeting as well, and policy direction will be given if needed.
The meeting will begin tonight, Jan. 25 at 6:30 p.m., and can be viewed on Channel 23 in the Santa Ynez Valley or streamed live on the city’s website.