Capital Improvement Plan for 2022 released

The City of Frankenmuth has been preparing a Capital Improvement Plan for many years. This plan has evolved over time to include more detail and a more focused review by staff, the Planning Commission and City Council.  The Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) is not just a valuable budgeting and project tool, but also mandated by the State of Michigan:

Section 125.3865 of the Michigan Planning Enabling Act. This act states in part,

“To further the desirable future development of the local unit of government under the master plan, a planning commission, after adoption of a master plan, shall annually prepare a capital improvements program of public structures and improvements… The capital improvements program shall show those public structures and improvements, in the general order of their priority, that in the commissions judgment will be needed or desirable and can be undertaken within the ensuing 6-year period. The capital improvements program shall be based upon the requirements of the local unit of government for all types of public structures and improvements.”

The City of Frankenmuth Capital Improvement Plan 2022-2027 (summary available for review here) works to establish, prioritize and plan for projects to improve existing and develop new infrastructure and facilities. A CIP promotes better use of the City’s limited financial resources, reduces costs, and assists in the coordination of public and private development. The City’s CIP is a five-year roadmap, which identifies the major expenses over and above routine annual operating expenses. While the CIP serves as a long-range plan, it is reviewed and revised annually. Priorities may be changed due to funding opportunities or circumstances that cause a more rapid deterioration of an asset. As a basic tool for documenting anticipated capital projects, it includes “unfunded” projects which needs have been identified, but specific solutions and funding have not necessarily been determined.

By definition, a capital expenditure (one which should be identified and included in the CIP) is an item(s)in excess of $20,000 with an expected useful life of more than one year. Smaller projects (less than $20,000) may be combined into one project and therefore defined as a capital expense. Items such as minor equipment and routine expenses will continue to be accounted for in the City’s annual budget and will not be included in the capital improvement plan. Projects that cost less than $20,000 but that will trigger larger financial commitments in the future, such as a study or design, should be included as well.

City staff is responsible for researching and preparing their proposed project submittals. As you look through the project list you will note the depth and length of the proposed capital projects. While it may seem exhaustive, the State of Michigan is encouraging communities to understand the long term financial responsibilities that come with infrastructure including routine costs for replacement. This plan attempts to place all potential projects whether they are new, expansions, or merely routine replacements into a projected timeline with costs.  

Project are identified in potential fiscal years. There is also a future category – defined as 2025 and beyond. These include new road construction and road extensions as well as projects which may be in part financed through grants that are yet unknown, special assessments, developer participation, etc. In the future category are projects that have been identified as needed, but do not meet enough of the criteria identified above to take precedent over other identified projects.  To see a full range of projects, please go here. 

In large, the work before you has been prepared and reviewed by staff and the City Manager with an eye toward what we believe are the most pressing capital needs (identified in the next two to three fiscal years) as well as what may potentially be part of a capital budget request to City Council for the next fiscal year.