Lisette Camacho

Lisette Camacho, Glendale’s budget and finance director, was to lead this week’s budget workshop. 

Glendale was to begin its annual budget process this week, with a study session Tuesday, Jan. 28.

In the 2020-21 fiscal year, which starts July 1, the city expects to spend some $230 million in its General Fund, with a beginning fund balance of nearly $48 million. This is quite a dramatic turnaround over the last five years when Glendale teetered on bankruptcy.

However, General Fund expenditures are expected to rise to nearly $245 million in the next four years, which will make city council’s goal of a $50 million surplus a challenge.

Glendale Police Department expenses, for example, are expected to rise from $92 million last year to $96 million. Glendale Fire Department expenses are expected to rise from $45 million to $48 million.

Police and fire department expenses are about 65% of the total General Fund spending.

City sales tax is projected to rise from $111 million last fiscal year to nearly $118 million this year.

The city of Glendale named Lisette Camacho its new budget and finance director at the end of 2019. Camacho had been interim director since May.

Camacho and Vicki Rios, the assistant city manager, will lead the budget workshop.

“Glendale is developing very quickly and there are a lot of projects happening,” Camacho said. “I don’t see it as a challenge, more of an excitement, managing project.”

She reiterated the city’s goals:

“Short term, it’s getting the budget approved and meeting the $50 million fund balance. We want to put more money into our streets, parks -  capital improvement is very important to our city council.”

Camacho said the city’s funds should be boosted by “one-time revenues for sale of assets. We are selling Glen Lakes (Golf Course), the Bank of America building, those one-time revenues we didn’t include in the forecast.”

Added to the sale of a parking lot near State Farm Stadium last year, the sales total around $15 million, Camacho said.