By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Ceres city budget on track at mid-year
• New businesses adding to city coffers
Ceres city seal to use 2023

Ceres City Finance Director Leticia Dias reported to the City Council last week that the city budget is holding well at mid-year with revenues tracking slightly higher than last year due to an increase in the price of goods.

The city began the fiscal year 2022-23 on July 1, 2022 with a General Fund beginning balance of $6.86 million and expects to close out the year with a balance of $6.77 million. That would leave the city with reserves of 24.8 percent – far above the council’s set minimum of 18 percent.

Dias asked the council for mid-year budget adjustments to add $93,000 to the General Fund.

In giving her five-year budget projection, Dias showed Ceres with reserves increasing to 32.4 percent in the 2025-26 fiscal year.

“We seem to be in a good position,” said Dias, who noted that the city is working with a sales tax consultant to determine what affect new retail developments will have on the city’s revenue stream.

City leaders will begin formulating next year’s fiscal budget earlier with work starting in February, a goal setting and budget workshop in March, finalizing a proposed budget on May 5 and adoption of the budget on June 12.

Vice Mayor Bret Silveira said that the city is in better fiscal shape than when the city used $1.1 million in ARPA funds to balance last year’s budget.

«I’m much more comfortable where we are now than where we were this time last year,» said Silveira. 

City Manager Alex Terrazas said the budget outlook looks more positive than it did last year, but advised the city of remaining “cautious” moving forward.

“These are budget estimates,” Terrazas reminded the council. “We all know the world is dynamic and fluid but these budget estimates do include revenues from some of that new development so we have plugged that into this model but again at least I think our approach at the staff level will be conservative and we want to make sure we set the city up for long term fiscal stability.”

Last year Terrazas said that economic development is critical to the city’s financial future.

Tax revenue is expected in increase as the Ceres Gateway Center is developed. New businesses open are Chipotle, Starbucks and In-N-Out Burger, while Ono Hawaiian BBQ, Quick Quack Car Wash and other businesses are preparing to open. The former Kmart property will be producing tax revenue with the proposed Dutch Bros and Raising Cane’s Chicken Fingers and other businesses.