Finance of Forest Park, GA

The City of Forest Park collected $15.10 million in total revenue in 1993. In 1997, the city received $13.71 million, a decrease of 9.2%. Total revenue in 1997 equaled $809 per capita. The statewide revenue per capita for this same year was $732.

From 1993 to 1997, own source revenues for Forest Park rose from $12.17 million to $13.35 million, an increase of 9.7%. Own source revenues are all revenues except intergovernmental revenues and enterprise funds. Per capita own source revenues amounted to $788 in 1997. This compares to a statewide per capita amount of $624.

Property tax revenues amounted to $2.74 million in 1993, accounting for 22.5% of the city’s own source revenue. In 1997, property taxes accounted for 8.7% of own source revenue, with $1.16 million collected.

Intergovernmental revenue includes money received from the federal government, state government and other local governments. In 1997, Forest Park received $356,400 in intergovernmental revenue, which accounted for 2.6% of total revenues. The city received $252,500 from the state and $103,900 from other local governments.

General operating expenditures for Forest Park in 1993 equaled $8.23 million, or $487 per capita. In 1997, general operating expenditures rose by 40.3% to $11.54 million, which was $681 per capita. Statewide per capita general operating expenditures amounted to $588 in 1997.

Historically, the top three expenditure categories for cities are administration, highways and streets, and public safety. In 1997, the City of Forest Park spent $2.45 million on administration or $144 per capita. For the same year, $734,100 was spent on highways and streets, or $43 per capita. Expenditures for public safety include police services, fire services and jails. Forest Park spent $4.98 million or $294 per capita in 1997 for public safety services.

In 1993, the City of Forest Park issued a total of $3.79 million in new debt, which could include revenue bonds, general obligation bonds, capital leases, short-term debt and other long-term debt. This represented $224 per capita. However, in 1997 Forest Park issued no new debt. Cities often issue debt to help finance large capital projects, such as buildings, roads, parks and water/sewer systems. Given the nature of capital projects, the amount of debt issued by a city can understandably vary greatly from one year to the next.