A slim version (three directors) of the Fern Valley Water District Board of Directors reviewed the proposed fiscal 2014-15 budget at the May 16 meeting.

For next fiscal year, which begins July 1, the proposed expenditures are significantly less than the initial forecast for the current year and less than the current projections.

The reduction is the district’s capital budget. FVWD’s budget committee recommended $133,000 for fiscal year 2014-15, compared to the estimated actual expenditure this year of $861,000, which is more than $200,000 less than the budget approved in June 2013.

This year, the district completed a major pipeline replacement project along Fern Valley Road, which is the reason the capital budget was so much larger this year.

Operating expenses are projected to increase about $50,000 more than the initial 2013-14 budget. However, the actual expenditures for operations are estimated to be about $560,000.

The major operational increases are for general engineering, filters and chlorination materials and workers compensation. The committee recommended a 5 percent increase in total salaries and overtime as well as $19,000 more for than the actual benefit costs this year, but only $4,000 more than the original estimate.

Revenue is projected to increase about $20,000, almost all from water sales. The committee did not plan for a rate increase next year.

For the March and April billing period, acting President Jim Rees noted that the district’s revenues were more than last year although production was slightly less. The increased revenue was about $2,000 for these two months, but production was about 3.2 percent (155,000 gallons) less than last year, when FVWD produced 4.8 million gallons.

For the first four months of the year, total production has been 8.9 million gallons, which is 1.3 million less less than the same period in 2013. Yet, it is about 500,000 gallons more than the 2012 period.

Although the stream flow has been very low, the level of the district’s wells has been holding, Erler told the board. Wells provided nearly half of the April production.

During the rest of May and June, his goal is to fill some of the water tanks with stream