West University's proposed budget anticipates $575,000 drop in recreation revenue

West University Place
West University Place will see $575,000 in reduced revenue from recreation fees, according to a proposed fiscal year 2020-21 budget discussed during a Sept. 8 workshop. (Hunter Marrow/Community Impact Newspaper)

West University Place will see $575,000 in reduced revenue from recreation fees, according to a proposed fiscal year 2020-21 budget discussed during a Sept. 8 workshop. (Hunter Marrow/Community Impact Newspaper)

West University Place is budgeting a drop in recreation revenue by $575,000 for the fiscal year 2020-21 budget as the city feels the effects of COVID-19.

The revenue drop was proposed during a budget workshop held by West University Place City Council on Sept. 8. The proposed budget calls for total general fund revenue of $21.01 million and expenditures of $21.28 million.

“2020 was not a kind year,” City Manager Dave Beach said.

The recreation fees, which are proposed to bring in $1.5 million, are budgeted down over 27% from current fiscal year revenue of $2.1 million.

The proposed revenue is down overall compared to the current year fiscal budget, which was approved at $21.07 million. Expenditures, meanwhile, were $20.89 million in the FY 2019-20 budget.

West University Place is still early in its budget process, with a Sept. 21 public hearing planned on the FY 2020-21 proposed budget and 2020 tax rate, followed by a vote scheduled for Sept. 28 to adopt both.

Though proposed expenditures would eclipse revenue in the general fund, West University proposes pulling some of its fund balance. Even so, the city projects ending FY 2020-21 with a $10.3 million fund balance.

The city has also proposed a total 2020 tax rate of $0.29409 per $100 of assessed value, down from the current rate of $0.30921.

While West University also anticipates a loss of $200,000 in additional revenue in the general fund—earnings on investments and municipal court fees—sales tax revenue is expected to actually see a $36,000 bump, buoyed in part by an increase in online purchases, according to budget workshop documents.

General fund expenditures would increase by nearly $386,000 from FY 2019-20 to FY 2020-21. Most expenditures in city departments have stayed relatively even, though the city has proposed increasing administration spending by $160,000, most of which would come from a new communications coordinator position.
By Hunter Marrow
Hunter Marrow came to Community Impact Newspaper in January 2020. Before that, Hunter covered local news in Ontario, OR for three years, covering municipal issues, crime, and education across Malheur County and across the border into Idaho.


The North Bellaire Special Development District located at the former Chevron campus at 4800 Fournace Place is in the review process by Bellaire’s Planning and Zoning Commission. (Hunter Marrow/Community Impact Newspaper)
Bellaire P&Z mulls changes to create north Bellaire zoning district

Almost a year in the works, Bellaire has a new zoning ordinance up for consideration.

At a Jan. 15 emergency court hearing, officials came up with a plan to try to reduce the inmate population at the Harris County Jail that centers on hosting more bail reduction hearings. (Courtesy Brian Jackson/Adobe Stock)
With open beds dwindling, officials look for ways to reduce Harris County jail population

The inmate population at the Harris County Jail is rising, and officials are looking for ways to quickly ease the pressure as concerns grow over the ability to quarantine and restrict the spread of the coronavirus.

Bocca Italian Kitchen serves seasonal, Italian-inspired dishes, such as polenta and various pastas. (Courtesy Marco Torres)
Italian eateries open in Generation Park; Houston bike lane fines enforced and more local news

Read the latest business and community news from the Houston area.

Minute Maid Park
Houston Health Department vaccine appointments fill up in 16 minutes

The department will administer 5,000 doses at Minute Maid Park on Jan. 16 and 17.

Officials expect demand for the vaccine will be huge once it opens to the general public. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Montgomery County plans vaccine distribution; FDA warns of false negatives and more top Houston-area news

Read the most popular stories from the past week from the Houston area.

Houston ISD
After impasse, Houston ISD trustees delay officer election

The board voted 8-1 to postpone their decision to Jan. 21.

Man riding bike in city
Houston’s grace period for bike lane parking fines ends

Houston residents now face a $100 fine for parking in bike lanes.

The Randalls store in Bellaire has already begun the liquidation process as it looks to close in February. (Hunter Marrow/Community Impact Newspaper)
Grocery chain Randalls to close Bellaire store in February

The company is working to place as many employees as possible in other locations.

Despite a global pandemic, Houston home sales broke records in 2020 and saw 10% more sales overall compared to 2019. (Courtesy Houston Association of Realtors)
Report: Houston home sales surpassed 2019 volumes despite pandemic

2020 single-family home sales surpassed 2019’s volume by more than 10%.

La Cocina de Roberto launched its second eatery in The Woodlands area in January. (Courtesy La Cocina de Roberto)
La Cocina de Roberto restaurant opens in The Woodlands and more Houston-area news

Read the latest business and community news from the Greater Houston area.

River Oaks District
River Oaks District launches farmers market this weekend

The Market at the District will be held 11 a.m.-3 p.m. on the third Sunday each month.

From Jan. 19-29, Coalition for the Homeless and staff from The Way Home will conduct the 2021 Homeless Count & Survey, in which they will work to identify sheltered and unsheltered people experiencing homelessness across Harris, Fort Bend and Montgomery counties. (Adobe Stock)
Coalition for the Homeless, The Way Home to conduct annual Greater Houston-area homeless count Jan. 19-29

The results of the 2021 homeless count and survey are expected to be released to the public this spring.