“I thought I’d make this real easy tonight,” she laughed as she held up a copy of Cleveland Magazine’s Rating of Suburbs edition. “I’m happy to report that we are the Number One city!”
Mayor Bobst presented lots of facts to support the Cleveland Magazine rating. With $12.3 million in income tax and $7.4 million in property tax generated each year to lead revenue sources, the City ended last year with $31.3 million in revenues – that was $8.8 million over $22.5 million expenses to allow for added capital improvements for the community. 39 per cent of the city’s revenue stream comes from Income Tax, 24 per cent from Property Tax and 14 per cent from sewer fees.
“We are running an efficient government,” she said, noting that budget reductions of almost $8 million since the 2008 recession served as a tribute to the willingness of staff and employees to work creatively, look at wage freezes/cuts and even take furloughs for the good of the city team. ‘We have had to be good stewards,” she said.
Most expenditures cover safety-services. 42 per cent of expenses go to public safety, 25 per cent to service and 15 per cent to parks and recreation.
How much has Rocky River grown over the years? Bobst shares an amazing fact: The total valuation of Rocky River in 1955 was $42 million. Today, it is $746 million!
Resident reinvestment in the city, she said, is a critical component to keeping a quality community. Resident reinvestment, which includes private home improvement, stood at $43 million last year.
Regional cooperation has led to many benefits, like the West Shore Dispatch Center that coordinates 911 for much of the West Shore, and Cleveland Water, which has made $5 million in improvements in the last few years. Sewer and street improvements continue to move forward, with the conclusion of Avalon Drive project in sight this fall.
Coming this year is an expansion at The Normandy with the building of a new assisted living unit. “The Normandy has been such an important part of this community: An active and generous part,” said Bobst.
Bradstreet’s Landing will also see improvements as Ohio Rep. Nan Baker assisted in finding state funds to help the city revamp the parking area there. Look for more walking trails to the lake and beach as Rocky River redesigns the loop parking lot to more of a rectangle.
Bobst also credits Rocky River Schools for adding to community excellence, citing Magnificat and Lutheran West as well for their roles in outstanding education.