ANAHEIM, Calif. (June 22, 2022) — A strong economy is driving record recovery in Anaheim’s budget for the coming 12 months as revenue is projected to exceed pre-pandemic levels and with more than $600 million in spending planned on community services and improvements.
Anaheim’s budget is projected to be 8 percent higher than a year earlier with revenue from hotel, sales and property taxes forecast to surpass pre-pandemic levels and reach new highs for the city.
The budget is for the 12 months from July 2022 through June 2023, referred to as fiscal year 2022-23.
The budget covers basic spending on public safety and community services, major improvement projects and the operations of Anaheim Public Utilities and other city enterprises.
Anaheim's City Council adopted the budget on Tuesday. Council members also directed additional funding for libraries and senior services:
- $784,739 to open three libraries on Saturdays: Central Library and Haskett branch library, which will open Monday through Saturday, and Ponderosa Joint-Use Branch, which will go to Monday through Thursday plus Saturday. Saturday operations are pending staffing and are expected in coming weeks.
- $225,356 to expand the Euclid and Sunkist branch libraries from three days a week to Monday through Friday, and the East Anaheim branch from three days a week to Monday through Thursday plus Saturday. The changes are expected to take effect the first week of July.
- $225,000 for additional services for seniors with funding going toward filling an open position for senior services.
- $230,818 for 50 additional neighborhood cleanup and resource fairs in neighborhoods, up from 58 now. The cleanup events bring residents together to help dispose of bulky and other items and get access to family services.
A strong rebound in Anaheim’s economy is driving the budget.
Anaheim’s economy is more than a year into the reopening of the theme parks of The Anaheim Resort, the Anaheim Convention Center and full operations at Angel Stadium of Anaheim and Honda Center.
The budget contrasts with the city’s experience during the heart of the pandemic in 2020 and early 2021, when the closure of the Disneyland Resort, the Anaheim Convention Center and limited operations at the city sports venues drove $185 million in lost revenue for the city.
Even with a strong budget recovery, we remain cautious about larger economic trends including inflation, rising interest rates and the risk of recession in 2023 or beyond.
BY THE NUMBERS
Anaheim’s total, overall city budget. It includes the city’s general fund for day-to-day services, a capital improvement program for big projects and enterprise funds for the city’s water and power utility, the Anaheim Convention Center, golf courses and other facilities. Anaheim’s overall budget for fiscal year 2022-23 is up 8 percent from the prior fiscal year, driven by a rebound in revenue for Anaheim’s general fund, Anaheim Public Utilities and expanded capital improvement spending.
Anaheim’s enterprise funds. They cover city operations that collect revenue for providing services to customers. These include Anaheim Public Utilities, the city’s not-for-profit water and electricity provider, and Convention, Sports & Entertainment, which runs the Anaheim Convention Center and oversees Honda Center, Angel Stadium of Anaheim, City National Grove of Anaheim and ARTIC transit center.
Enterprise funds make up the largest portion of Anaheim’s overall budget, with nearly all of the revenue they generate going to offset the expense of their operations or to fund improvements. Residents benefit from reliable electricity and water service and rates that are lower than in surrounding cities. Residents also benefit from visitors who come to Anaheim for conventions, sports and entertainment and spend money on hotels, shopping and dining.
Spending by enterprise funds is budgeted up 6 percent from the prior year.
Anaheim’s general fund. This is the city’s main source of money for day-to-day operations, covering spending on staffing and services and programs at parks, libraries and community centers, as well as police, fire, paramedics and other city services. The general fund is up 9 percent from the prior fiscal year.
Anaheim’s capital improvement program. The capital improvement program funds upgrades to parks, roadways, sewers, landscapes, electric and water systems and more. The program is funded in some cases by enterprise revenue. In other cases it’s funded by outside sources, including the state’s gasoline tax, a portion of sales tax for transportation, federal Community Development Block Grants, developer fees and other sources. The capital improvement program typically fluctuates from year to year. This year, it is up by 15 percent from the prior fiscal year.
Anaheim’s beginning reserves balance for fiscal year 2022-23, equal to 17 percent of general fund spending. The reserve fund is up 40 percent from the prior fiscal year.
Anaheim’s budget calls for spending $11.6 million to enhance or develop parks in the coming 12 months.
Included is a new downtown park, Center Greens, with $3.5 million budgeted to transform what’s now a grassy field into a park with a basketball court, butterfly garden, shaded plaza and a fitness loop. Construction on Center Greens is set to start in fall 2022.
Nearby Citrus Park is set to see $395,000 in spending to replace play equipment that is more than 20 years old.
Ross Park, at Broadway and the Santa Ana (I-5) Freeway, is set to see a new play structure to replace the nearly 20-year-old play equipment at a cost of $300,000.
At Maxwell Park in west Anaheim, 10 outdoor fitness stations as well as a walking path are planned in late 2022 at a cost of $250,000. The improvements follow the opening of the Maxwell Park Dog Park in 2020.
Other parks across the city are set to see $800,000 in spending on ballfield lights, playground equipment, restroom improvements and other renovations.
Fire station improvements
Anaheim Fire & Rescue Station 4 next to Maxwell Park in west Anaheim is set to see $3 million in remodeling to increase the size and height of the station’s bays to house larger, modern fire engines.
The station will also be renovated to better reflect accessibility standards.
Station 4, which was built in 1959, could see construction in late 2022 or early 2023 with completion later in 2023.
The station will close during remodeling with staff temporarily relocating to station 11 near Twila Reid Park and continuing to serve the area.
Electricity, water, sewage
A combined $118 million in spending is set to improve and maintain the electric and water systems of Anaheim Public Utilities as well as the city’s storm and waste water systems.
Electric system improvements are set to see $80.5 million in spending.
Continued work to automate Anaheim’s electric grid is set to see $3.5 million in spending on new automated switches, digital equipment and software that can isolate electric outages and reroute power, minimizing those affected by outages and restoring power sooner.
More than $20 million is set to replace aging water mains ― the large pipes that carry water throughout our city and then supply small pipes leading to homes and businesses.
Work would include replacing old water mains, valves and vaults across the city. The upgrades would minimize outages from emergency repairs and reduce leaks.
Nearly $9 million is set for new sewer lines for wastewater from homes and businesses. Projects are planned in central Anaheim, near East Street and La Palma and in west Anaheim near Magnolia Street.
About $72 million is set to be spent improving streets, bridges sidewalks and curbs and coordinating traffic signals across Anaheim.
More than $5 million in spending is planned for streets including new lanes, right-turn lanes and medians, all to improve traffic flow and pedestrian safety.
Work is planned for Lincoln Avenue from East Street to Evergreen Street, Brookhurst Street from Cerritos Avenue to Palais Road and new guardrails along Santa Ana Canyon Road in east Anaheim.
You can read more about Anaheim’s budget here.