An integral component of any facility is the cost to operate. The current facilities have a known cost since operation of these facilities have significant history. The annual operating budget for current facilities is $913,290. This budget does not include capital improvements or emergency fund repairs. Budgeted revenues for 2016 are $192,440. This represents a cost recovery of approximately 21 percent. Another way to look at these figures is that in order to operate these facilities, $720,850 of general fund support of public funds is necessary.
Preliminary high level accounting has been provided for the proposed new facility concept. The initial revenue is anticipated to reach $1,167,570 with expenses estimated at $1,532,460. As with the current facility comparison, these figures do not include capital improvement or emergency fund repairs. The dramatic difference between old and new stems from purposeful design. Creating spaces with amenities City of Merriam residents have identified as needs / wants will drive demand. Based on this model, cost recovery is estimated at 76 percent. The general support of the facility would be reduced to $364,890 which is almost half the cost required to operate the current facilities.
Even though these are preliminary figures that do not include the capital investment necessary to build, these budgetary figures will be key components in future discussions. Operational costs are always greater than the initial capital investment. No matter which of the three options are chosen to meet the current and future needs of the residents of Merriam, understanding the impact the decision will have over the course of time will be a critical topic of discussion.