Sewer fund expected to run short

By Grace Moore

Grace Moore photo
Council members and city staff consider the potential shortfall in Moorcroft’s sewer fund next year.

At last Tuesday’s quarterly budget meeting, Cheryl Schneider, Moorcroft’s Clerk/Treasurer advised the council present that, with the investment fees restricted from the general fund to pay loans for the town’s infrastructure, the general fund will be short approximately $17,000 in the next fiscal year.

“That means that, without the increase in July, we will have to look at cutting the sewer operational budget somewhere or we’re going to have to find the revenue somewhere to pay it,” she said.

Considering the options available, Councilman Dick Claar stated, “I’ve looked at the operation out there [lagoon] and I don’t see where we can cut costs at all.”

As a second option, he suggested a “better job of accountability”, with the governing body examining the actual hours maintenance works on sewer as opposed to time billed to that line item. At this time the line items pay by percentage.

“Maybe we need to have the guys write down the hours they actually spend on each department,” he said. This breakdown of time has been previously suggested, but has not been made mandatory as yet. “Maybe we’re not in a deficit.”

The other option, said Claar, is raising rates. “I’m totally against it, but it has to be self sustaining.”