The message was released at the June 12 city council meeting.
The state passes more unfunded mandates on to municipalities, and they are left to fund their budgets with fewer dollars, Amrhein's message stated.
"In the past, cities have been able to fill this gap with grant dollars but even this process is becoming increasingly problematic," Amrhein said. "Regardless, the City of Zachary will have a balanced budget, will actively pursue its share of grants and will be successful in the upcoming year."
As the largest of the three funds for Zachary, sales tax revenues fund over 60 percent of the general fund budget. This year’s legislative session deferred a bill that would have reduced sales tax revenues by eliminating the sales tax on pharmaceuticals.
Additionally, a another deferred bill would have reduced revenue on cable franchises from a five to a two percent maximum, Amrhein's message said.
The bills would have cost the city about $800,000 a year. "As a result, we budgeted conservatively," Amrhein said.
Expenditures beyond the city's control continue to increase in areas such as health insurance, retirement, fuel and utility costs.
Every expense will be analyzed in an effort to save wherever possible, Amrhein said.
A three percent salary increase for city employees was also mentioned, with individual increases given based on performance reviews.
Projected general fund revenues for 2012-13 total $11.73 million with expenses projected at $11.2 million.
The city council voted to adopt the budgets for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2012, and ending June 30, 2013.
Other city council agenda items included:
BREC: New Superintendent Carolyn McKnight addressed the council by introducing some of the 60 BREC employees who live in the Zachary area.
McKnight reported to the council that park renovations and improvements to the playgrounds at 39th, Rita and Church Street parks, as well as Plank Road Park, are on the way.
"I hope we re-work the ball fields," Amrhein said, asking support from McKnight and BREC for Zachary Youth Park. "We have an opportunity to become a baseball destination and generate funds for the city," said the mayor.
WAIVERS: Councilmembers voted to allow a mobile home on a three-acre W.J. Wicker Rd. site for at least two years while the couple - John Corey and Katie Mondulick - builds a home.
Although the new Uniform Development Code (UDC) only allows for mobile homes to be placed on 10-acre sites, the council said its intention was never to strictly interpret it. "We'll look at these (waivers) on a case-by-case basis," said Councilman Brandon Noel.
Councilman John Coghlan abstained from voting on the waiver, since Mondulick is his daughter.
CONDEMNATION: An extension was granted to Robert E. Smith, owner of the 4315 Spur Lane property.
Smith was directed to hire a contractor, develop a rehab plan for the property and show proof of financial responsibility to City Building Official Scott Masterson, but Masterson said he was never contacted.
"It's not our desire to tear down anyone's house," Amrhein said. "But the good nature of this council will wear thin if we don't see some progress."
Smith was given 90 days to make improvements.
AMERICANA: Pending DHH approval, a low project bid of $134,250 will be awarded to Greenbriar Digging Services for a water line to Americana's YMCA facility.
PEC representative Carolina Herrera said it should take about 60 days to get the approval.
The next Zachary City Council meeting will be held Tuesday, June 26, at 6:30 p.m. at City Hall, 4700 Main St.