Monarch experienced an unexpected decrease in revenues for 2013 when tax figures from the county were finalized in early March. The Monarch staff advised the Board of this variation between what was budgeted for the year and what was actually received, and indicated it was from a combination of factors with the major contributors being unpaid and protested property taxes. The District’s biggest concern is that residents are still struggling to pay their bills in the current economy, an issue that will need to be addressed going forward as revenues are budgeted.

Fortunately, due to proper planning, the District has reserves designed for this type of unanticipated fiscal event. Monarch has made a budget adjustment and still has reserves that exceed 44% of the operating budget.

Regrettably there has been misinformation distributed to the press that the District was “over-budget”. The 2013 budget was based on revenue levels projected and provided by St. Louis County based on formulas used for many years. Had revenues matched projections, there would have been no shortfall. The Board will be addressing the decrease in revenue at upcoming meetings in anticipation of setting the budget for 2014 later this year.