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Marysville tightens belt on budget, urges residents to 'Buy Local'

MARYSVILLE — The city budget for 2010 that the Marysville City Council adopted on Nov. 16 represents a reduction of 2009's revised spending levels, in spite of the annexation which will add approximately 20,000 residents to Marysville's existing population of more than 37,000 effective Dec. 30.

During the Nov. 16 City Council meeting, Council member Carmen Rasmussen said that the decline in sales tax revenue means "it's more important than ever" for Marysville residents to spend their dollars in the city to build its retail sales tax base back up, a message that's also been promoted through the "Buy Local" campaign launched by the Greater Marysville Tulalip Chamber of Commerce earlier this year.

City of Marysville Finance Director Sandy Langdon noted that sales tax revenues have decreased from previous years. She added that the 2010 spending plan estimates a less than 1 percent increase in sales tax from the 2009 amended budget, holding steady at 2009 revised estimates.

The 2010 budget of $118.35 million includes a general fund budget of $34.1 million, down 2 percent from what the city is expected to spend by the end of this year. A central Marysville annexation budget of $3.9 million, derived primarily from a 0.1 percent state sales tax credit provided to the city for each addition of 10,000 to its population, is intended to help offset municipal services costs in the area to be annexed. Marysville Mayor Dennis Kendall's budget message explained that city directors were asked to assume that no departments would receive new programs or additional staff.

The Council also voted by a required supermajority to dip into its reserves for nearly $1 million, enough to reduce the reserve fund from 8 percent of its budget to a 5 percent rate against expenditures.

At the Nov. 16 meeting, Kendall reiterated the need to seek out funding sources to replenish the city streets fund, which has been nearly depleted due to past voter-approved initiatives and decreased revenues from gas and sales taxes, according to Kendall. He deemed improving the city's streets and traffic congestion as the number-one priority for Marysville citizens.

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