The Belton Journal

Mike Rodgers, Finance Director for the City of Belton, presented the early stages of the Fiscal Years 2023-2027 Capital Improvement Program (CIP) at the most recent Belton City Council meeting.
The City Council gives input on projects and scheduling for inclusion in the CIP.
As presented, the five-year CIP plan provides a framework for how the city expects to develop infrastructure over the next five years.
The CIP is another piece of the puzzle that makes up the fiscal year 2023 budget. The CIP will become part of the fiscal year budget when it gets public input at a public hearing in the coming weeks.
Then, the budget in its entirety will be voted on by the City Council and adopted if approved.
The proposed expenditures for fiscal year 2023 total $25,078,030 to be spent for capital-related items. Every year the CIP is reviewed to see if the City’s priorities are being met.
The 2023-2027 CIP is a two-part budget. In the General Government CIP, non-utility projects such as streets, parks and general government facilities total $40,200,000.
Projects that benefit the City’s utility funds fall under The Utility CIP. These projects include water projects that have been identified for the next five years. Replacing aging pumps at the Sparta Road Pump Satiation in 2023 will increase flow rates for increasing demand. Projects to replace failing or undersized water lines throughout Belton is in the plan. The second phase of the Loop 121 utility relocation project is expected in 2025. Eleven wastewater projects are included in the CIP. Wastewater treatment will be expanded in 2023 with the Temple-Belton WWTP Phase 11 project. Other projects will address various failing or undersized sewer lines. The addition of new culverts and channels at East 4th Avenue and North Blair will address drainage projects.
Revenue from two utility funds will provide $6,425,000 of project funding. The Belton Economic Development Corporation and Belton Tax Increment Reinvestment Zone No,1 will contribute funding of more than $26,000,000 towards several vital projects. Other methods of funding include utility rate revenue, or bonds secured by a rate revenue. Cash-funding may come from TIRZ, City revenue, Grants, BEDC, and other funding
Projects in the city’s capital improvement plan includes two parking lot projects at the Police Department complex to improve parking surface and increasing the number of parking spaces at the facility. The Fire Department will replace a 15-year-old brush truck that has reached the end of its useful life. Park amenities will be added to Heritage Park during the five-year period. The interior of the library will be redesigned and renovated. Restoration of the Historic Standpipe, construction of Standpipe Park, and rehabilitation of the historic Mount Zion Methodist Church should begin in 2024.
The five-year plan includes reconstruction of several roadways, including Connell Street. Replacement of the East Central Avenue bridge is a significant project scheduled for 2023. Better access to the Belton Business Park includes the extension of W Avenue D. Projects on South Pearl and Brenda Lane will improve failing roadways. Facilitation of development in the southern sector of the city will include widening Toll Bridge Road from Shanklin Road to the Lampasas River.
Public Works will replace aging equipment using the equipment replacement fund. The interior of the Finance building will be renovated and increase additional space for employees.
The five-year plan has over $68,000,000 worth of projects, with $24,000,000 budgeted for fiscal year 2023. There is a possibility of having to issue $20,000,000 in bond debt in the next five-years. Current inflationary costs, supply chain issues, cost of living adjustments, interest rate changes, and rapid growth have put downward pressures on the ending fiscal year 2022 budget as well as the fiscal year 2023 budget. Financing future budgets is dependent upon the receipt of grant funds for several projects. If grants are not awarded, it will be necessary to use funds from the general fund, or issue more debt to complete the projects.