Fort Smith, Arkansas
|Transparency grading process|
Portions of this article were taken from Wikipedia
See also: Evaluation of Arkansas city websites
Last evaluated September of 2012.
- Meeting schedules, agendas, and minutes are posted.
- Budget documents and financial audits are published.
- Names, email addresses, and telephone numbers are provided for members of the Board of Directors.
- Key administrative contact details are posted on individual department webpages.
- Building and zoning information is posted.
- Bid solicitations are posted.
- Tax rates are posted.
- Information on how to file a public records request is provided. The Public Information Officer also provides an address, phone number and email.
- Contracts are not listed.
- Taxpayer-funded lobbying details are not posted.
Total expenditures included in the FY 2012 budget are estimated at $221.5 million. Total funding sources are estimated at $363.8 million.
Summary of total resources:
|Source||Percent of Total|
|Licenses and Fees||29.1%|
|Taxes and Assessments||20%|
|Court Fines and Forfeits||0.6%|
|Service Charges and Fees||16.6%|
|Prior Year Fund Balance||23.5%|
Summary of total uses: Summary of total resources:
|Source||Percent of Total|
Current members of the Board of Directors include:
|Rev. Don Hutchings||3||3||12/31/12|
|Philip H. Merry, Jr.||7||At-Large||12/31/14|
The current Mayor is Sandy Sanders. His term expires on 12/13/14.
2012 pay schedules are posted online by the Human Resources department.
All uniformed police and fire personnel participate in the Arkansas Local Police and Fire Retirement, administered by the state. City contribution rates are set actuarially each year. District Court Judges and District Court Clerks are members of the Arkansas Judges Retirement System and the Arkansas Public Employees Retirement System, respectively. As the result of a 2007 agreement, all three judges became employees of the state. The current employer contribution rate for the clerk is 12.54%. All other full-time employees are members of a 401 (a) contribution plan administered by the International City Management Association Retirement Corporation (ICMARC). The City contributes 10% of pay to each employee's account.
Information is not provided on taxpayer funded lobbying.
The City's current total sales tax rate is 9.25%. The source of the tax is:
|State of Arkansas Sales Tax||6%|
|City of Fort Smith Tax||2%|
|Sebastian County Tax||1.25%|
Of the City's 2%, 1% is dedicated for streets, drainage and bridges. The remaining 1% is for redemption of the sales and use tax bond issues.
Other taxes include a 4% utility franchise fee, a 3% hotel/motel tax, and a property tax millage rate of $0.70 per $100 of assessed value.
Transparency & public records
File an FOIA Request As city administrator, I am a firm believer in transparency and openness in government. The City of Fort Smith is eager to comply with Freedom of Information requests, as provided by Arkansas state law. The Arkansas Press Association has an excellent handbook available that makes the law clear for citizens requesting information and for those of us responsible for meeting or exceeding the requirements for complying with the citizen’s request.
Paper copies of existing documents are available for inspection and can be reproduced for 25 cents per page. The preferred media for meeting requests for large amounts of documents is CD, DVD, or a jump drive.
In many cases, citizens may prefer to simply inspect the documents where they are stored and earmark which, if any, digital or paper documents they wish to take with them.
If you have an FOIA request, please contact Wendy Beshears at 479.784.2201 or FOIA@fortsmithar.gov. She will route your request to the appropriate department for fulfillment of your request.
- Arkansas on State Budget Solutions
- Fort Smith official website
- Old West Towns
- Fort Smith, City-Data
- Fort Smith Chamber of Commerce
- The Times Record
- University of Arkansas Fort Smith