Auburn city officials cut about $161,000 from its proposed FY2012 budget Tuesday night, including a planned pay hike for city employees.
The town plans to adopt its new budget Aug. 2. Although the city hasn’t discussed its tax rate, there don’t appear to be plans to raise the millage rate at this point.
The city is expecting to have around $3.4 million in general fund revenues in the coming fiscal year, but expenses were projected to be above $3.5 million. Expenses in the current year is set at $3.3 million.
Most of the city’s projected revenue comes from sales taxes at $1.1 million and property taxes at $650,000.
Some 43 percent of the city’s spending, $1.5 million, is slated to go to the town’s police department. The public works department is set at $374,000 and city finance at $371,850.
Among the cuts agreed to Tuesday night were cutting a 2.5 percent pay increase that had been proposed for all employees; the deferment of a $22,000 payment on a city truck over three years; a city marketing expense of $5,000; a $25,000 allotment for a new police car; and a $35,000 salary for a police department employee.
The city decided to keep the town’s health insurance program despite a $37,000 jump in costs and fund that by delaying the proposed 2.5 percent pay hike. The city will review the pay hike in six months, officials said.
“The value of having that healthcare is really great,” said Mayor Linda Blechinger. “And to weigh out which one is more beneficial, to get a 2.5 percent pay increase or the city to continue to cover the cost of healthcare, I think, pretty much across the board, you would have consensus.”
The city is under increasing pressure this year to rein in its expenses. Over the last three years, the city has been spending more than it’s had in revenues, forcing officials to dip into city reserves to balance its spending. Last year, the city spent $900,000 more than it took in.
Wait a minute... Didn't every employee get a "bonus" during Christmas last year because the city was in the blck and doing so good? I'm confused. Barrow Journal research this.. I believe you guys were the ones who published the story. So now the truth comes out, Hummm... Worth looking into I think.