Evanston revenues, expenditures drop compared to 5-year projections

Joseph Diebold, Managing Editor

Evanston’s revenues and expenditures for fiscal years 2009 to 2013 came in below projections — in some cases by nearly 30 percent — according to a new analysis of the city’s five-year financial outlook first presented in 2007.

Jonathan Williams-Kinsel, a fellow from the International City/County Management Association who is working with Evanston, conducted the review.

On average, each fiscal year’s revenues came in nearly $10 million below 2007 projections, highlighted by fiscal year 2011, when the $73,969,578 in revenues was 20 percent lower than the projection of $92,103,270. The difference in actual versus projected expenditures that year was even more drastic, with Evanston spending more than $26 million less than the projection of $97,681,392. Overall, fiscal year expenditures for the five-year period fell an average of $15,380,198 below their projections.

Though Evanston was projected to have steadily rising deficits over the course of five years, the numbers fluctuated, going from a $2,340,519 surplus in fiscal year 2011 to a $4,833,157 deficit in fiscal year 2012. The city had a $1,967,896 surplus in fiscal year 2013.

In his report, Williams-Kinsel cited “economic sensitivity due to the recession, decreases in property tax revenue and state aid, (and) the establishment of Library and Solid Waste funds” as contributing to the revenue decreases, while “major reductions in staffing, improved efficiencies and cost reductions in service delivery, (and) the establishment of Library and Solid Waste funds” led to the expenditure drops. 

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