City Budget & Financial Reports

Budget Process

Development of the City's budget begins each spring as a joint process involving the City Council, City Administrator, Finance Director and the department heads.  A budget calendar is developed to provide adequate time for a thorough review of the proposed budget. Input from the public is an important part of the budget process; to learn about participating, please call 651-730-2817.

The following are key dates in the 2024 budget process:

  • City Council conducts goal setting in spring
  • City staff prepare budgets from May through July
  • Budget workshops are held in August and September
  • City Council adopts proposed 2024 levy on September 12
  • Proposed 2024 tax levy is certified to Washington County by September 30
  • Washington County sends proposed property taxes and meeting dates to discuss (formerly Truth-in-Taxation hearing) between November 11 and November 24
  • City Council holds the Truth-In-Taxation meeting on December 12, after which the City Council considers the adoption of the final levy and budget for 2024
  • Final tax levy is certified to Washington County by December 28

Core Fiscal Principles

  • Evaluate and acknowledge both the short and long-term impacts of all budgetary decisions
  • Stabilize revenues and expenditures, and eliminate unanticipated variances 
  • Fund operations at a level to provide quality services at a reasonable cost 
  • Preserve structural balance and appropriate fund balance levels to mitigate future risks
  • Consider additional investments when they help achieve City goals and provide a significant return to the community 
  • Seek to make a connection between resources and results 

Prioritized Objectives

  • Focusing on essential city services and funding these activities adequately
  • Maintaining high quality city operated Public Safety Departments
  • Investing in modern technology to improve services and increase efficiency
  • Continuing to fund annual street reconstruction/maintenance projects
  • Enhancing City parks, trails, open spaces, and facilities
  • Fostering an efficient and transparent government
  • Promoting citizen engagement

2023 Budget Information


2023 Budget Outcomes

  • Commitment to City Operated Policing
    • Deployment of body-worn cameras for all licensed officers
    • One newly funded full-time Patrol Officer
    • Four new squad vehicles to be deployed to patrol division
  • Complete Transition to Full Career Modeled Fire Department
    • Three additional full-time Firefighter/EMT/Paramedic Positions for 2023
    • Fully fund three additional full-time Firefighter/EMT/Paramedic Positions that were budgeted for ½ of 2022
    • Only 1.9% of Minnesota’s 725 licensed Fire Departments have achieved this distinction
  • Investment in City Facilitates, Equipment, Trails, Open Spaces, and Parks
    • Most comprehensive Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) in Oakdale history
    • Internal funding all vehicles & equipment; eliminate need for equipment certificate debt
    • Replacement of playground equipment at one park and repaving the Oakdale Nature Preserve Trail
    • Additional surveillance cameras in and around city buildings and parks 
    • Creation of a new full-time Facility Manager which will allow for reallocation of current staff time
  • Reduce debt levy for third consecutive year and to lowest level since 2017
  • Absorb $260,558 reduction in Local Government Aid (LGA) from State of Minnesota


2023 Levy and Assessment Highlights

  • Total citywide assessed property values up 16.48% from 2022
    • Apartment Values Greatest Increase of 28.55%
  • Preliminary city tax rate reduction of 2.93% from 2022
    • Indicates values are growing faster than City tax levy
  • 2023 levy is a 12.00% increase from 2022
    • This includes assessed property value increase
    • This includes General Fund, Debt Service, and Capital Project Funds
  • Estimated median valued residential property is $315,000; up 19.2%
    • Values established January of year prior to taxes payable
    • Washington County provides assessor services for Oakdale
  • Median residential property value has doubled since 2012
    • 3rd largest increase in Washington County among ten most populous cities during this time span, predominantly due to property appreciation


Assessing Responsibility and Process

  • The Washington County Assessor’s Office is responsible for establishing the market value and determining classification (use) of property located within Washington County. The Assessor’s Office also maintains the county’s property database and is the primary source of property information for interdepartmental and community use.
  • Minnesota statutes establish specific requirements for the assessment of property. The law requires that all real property be valued at market value, which is defined as the usual or most likely selling price as of the January 2 assessment date. 
  • The estimated market values established through the 2022 assessment are based upon actual real estate market trends of Washington County properties from October 1, 2020 through September 30, 2021. The 2022 assessed values are then used to calculate taxes payable for 2023. 
  • If you have questions, you can contact the County Assessor’s Office at 651-430-6175 between the hours of 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. and your call will be directed to the appraiser responsible for your property.
  • Additional information can be found on the Washington County Assessor’s Office website.

Annual Comprehensive Financial Report

The Annual Comprehensive Financial Report (ACFR) of the City of Oakdale for the fiscal year ending December 31, 2022 is available. The report is prepared in accordance with prescribed standards, and includes an introduction, a complete financial report, an independent auditor’s evaluation and financial statistics. The report’s financial section includes management’s discussion and analysis, basic financial statements and required supplementary information. The statistical section includes select financial and demographic information, typically presented on a multi-year basis. The purpose of this report is to provide the Mayor, City Council, City staff, citizens, bondholders, and other interested parties with useful information concerning the City’s operations and financial position.

For the fiscal year ending December 31, 2021, the Oakdale Finance Department received the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting. The certificate, awarded by the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada, is the highest form of recognition in the area of governmental accounting and financial reporting. The City has earned this award for 32 consecutive years.