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South Jordan Journal

City Council Adopts $105 Million Budget

Aug 03, 2016 10:55AM ● By Sandra Osborn

South Jordan City implemented use of Priority based budgeting which first identifies the communities’ most important strategic priorities and then ranks programs and services according to how well they align. Funds are then allocated in accordance to ranking. - Sandra Osborn

By Sandra Osborn | [email protected]

South Jordan, Utah - The South Jordan City Council approved the FY2016-2017 Budget at the June 21st  meeting. The $105 million budget passed in a matter of minutes, following months of discussions among city council members and city staff. Public input was noticeably absent.

 The tentative city budget was adopted unanimously back in April and made public to provide time for residents to express their concerns if any, but nobody showed up. Mayor Alvord, seeing no one, closed the public comment on the budget almost immediately.

 “Interesting last week we spent three hours on a gate but when it comes to a hundred million dollar budget, the community has nothing to say about it,” Mayor Alvord said to the chuckle of his colleagues.

 While the atmosphere was light, adopting the proposed budget was not a light duty.

 “The budget in my mind, if it is not the most important thing we do, is pretty dang close,” Council member Shelton said. “It deserves close scrutiny.”

 The council seemed to be of one mind. They only asked Chief Financial Officer Sunil K. Naidu to clarify a few questions before adopting the proposed budget in a unanimous vote.

 The budget was developed using tools from the center for Priority based budgeting.

 “The staff and departments used the tools to ensure the continued delivery of exceptional services, while maintaining healthy reserves,” City Manager Gary Whatcott wrote in the introduction to the budget.  

“These key initiatives bring life to the budget and provide an easy guide for residents to link their taxes to measured outcomes,”  Whatcott said.

Here are some items of interest:

The South Jordan budget for FY2016-2017 is $105,927,596.

Total Revenue Overview: Taxes and fees comprise of less than a third of the total projected revenue for the city at $28.5 million. The city earns almost $28.9 million from charges for services and another $25.4 million come in through transfers and use of the fund balance. The rest of the revenue comes from area increments, licenses and permits, road funds, intergovernmental revenues and fees, and other miscellaneous revenue.

Expenditure: Wages and benefits comprise the major projected expenditure at over $31.2 million. Operating expenses follow closely at $25.8 million and project expenditures add up another $22.4 million. Transfers and contributions to fund balance, materials and supplies, and debt payments make up the rest of the consolidated expenses.

Taxes: Sales tax is the largest revenue source for the city of South Jordan, making up approximately 27% of the overall general fund revenues. The current sales tax rate is 3% for grocery food sales and 6.85% for most other consumer goods.

Property Tax is South Jordan City’s second largest source of revenue, accounting for approximately 23% of general fund revenue. South Jordan’s property tax rate is 0.002082. It is comparable to other cities in Salt Lake County, sitting between the tax rate of Cottonwood Heights and Murray and quite less than Salt Lake City and West Valley City.

From the property tax revenue, over 41.2% goes to Jordan School District. Other major beneficiaries are Salt Lake County and South Jordan city. Around 6.2% goes toward the Salt Lake County library system. The rest of the funds are divided among services such as sewer and water.

Safety: The Fire Department has a budget increase of $1.3 million over last fiscal year, standing at $6.7 million. The increase comes in anticipation of the new Fire Station #63. The Fire Department plans on hiring and training 15 new firefighter positions: 14 Firefighter EMT and 1 Fire Paramedic.

The Police Department has a working budget of $6.7 million. They are planning to add one new Police Officer position in the next year.

Public Works: The budget for Public Works is $10.7 million. Divisions of Streets, Street Lighting, Water, Secondary Water, Storm Water, Sanitation, Recycling, Parks Maintenance, Fleet Management and Cemetery all operate under this budget.

Other: Some proposed infrastructure and other projects of interest include the conversion of parks to secondary water ($1.1 million), water pipe transite replacement ($1.3 million), zone 6 storage ($1.2 million), Welby Park Construction phase 1 ($1.5 million), fleet replacement ($882,600), replacement of pavers at City Hall ($250,000), Cemetery landscape improvements ($250,000) and many more. For complete budget see:





Fitness Center


Gale Center




Senior Center


Breakdown of Consumer Good Taxes


State of Utah


Mass Transit


Salt Lake County


Zoo, Arts, and Parks (ZAP)