City Expenses

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The City purchases goods and services and employs staff in order to provide services, programs and activities to meet the municipal needs of the residents of Mesa. Expenses are classified into different categories below. Use the drop down to learn more about each expenditure category. 

City Budget by Expenditure 2017

Personal Services

The cost of personnel accounts for the largest portion of expenditures for the City. Personal Services consist of all employer costs related to compensating employees of the City of Mesa. This includes full-time, part-time and seasonal positions as well as overtime, benefits, specialty pay, shift differential and incentive pay. Also included are benefit expenses related to retired employees.            

Other Services 

Other Services include the costs of outside professional services, public utility services, travel, rents, insurance, and a variety of other expenses. For example, costs like maintaining and repairing city grounds and buildings, having a garage truck dump at a landfill, and using a city owned vehicle would all fall in this category.



Commodities are expendable items used by operating or construction activities. Examples include office supplies, repair and replacement parts for equipment, fuels and lubricants, etc.

Purchased Capital

The acquisition of any item of capital that is complete in and of itself when it is purchased.

Debt Service 

Debt Service expense include payment of principal, interest, and related service charges on obligations resulting from the issuance of bonds. The City issues debt in the form of bonds in order to finance long-term capital improvements such as streets, buildings, utility systems, etc.


Capital Improvement Program

The Capital Improvement Program (CIP) represents the City’s plan to meet its public facility and infrastructure needs. All CIP projects are assigned to one of the five following categories:

  • Economic Investment
  • Parks and Culture
  • Public Safety
  • Transportation
  • Utilities

Due to limited resources, not all projects identified during the budget process are adopted in the final budget. Projects are priorities based on how each project: 

  • Meets the needs of the City considering factors such as financial feasibility, public health and safety
  • Fulfills the City’s legal commitment to provide safe and adequate facilities and services
  • Creates efficiencies in existing facilities
  • Prevents or reduces future maintenance cost and prolongs useful life of facility
  • Provides services to developed areas lacking full service
  • Promotes infill development 




Carryovers are expenses related to items that were budgeted last year and not received. For example, if Solid Waste plans on purchasing a new garage truck that would not arrive until the next fiscal year, they would carryover the funds from the current fiscal year to the next to pay for the vehicle when it arrives.



Contingency funding provides for the spending authority for unexpected events or other unforeseen needs that arise during the course of the fiscal year. Examples include natural disasters, new unfunded mandates, or the receipt of unanticipated grant funding. If unable to cover an unexpected cost within their department budget, managers may submit a request for contingency funding to OMB for review. The City Manager’s Office considers the request in context of City priorities and needs. Contingency funding is supported by unrestricted fund balance reserves. The needs of the City are balanced with the needs of maintaining adequate reserves.