City Budget Temporarily Balanced

by Audry Kensicki on December 28, 2009 at 9:58 am

The Zanesville city budget is balanced, at least temporarily.

After an earlier budget meeting today City Council voted, with several amendments, to pass the proposed city budget for the year 2010.

"All in all for a temporary budget, it’s balanced," said Councilman-at-Large Jeff Tilton. "We have a lot to do to get the permanent budget at the end of March."

After weighing the options over several budget hearings, council made three amendments to the proposed temporary budget by Budget and Finance Director Dale Raines.

"We took money out of the Fire Department’s salaries and moved it to Building Maintenance so we could keep that department alive," he said. "We also changed money from the Fire Department to the Port Authority, to fully fund them. We also took $502,000 out of the capital outlay of the Fire Department and moved it into a contingency fund, so we could maybe not have as many furloughs as we have planned right now."

Since this is only a temporary budget, there is still room for additional changes. The final budget must be in place by the end of March 2010.

Also at council tonight, several ordinances were passed separate of the temporary budget.

The ordinance to raise fees charged to residents of the city for solid waste disposal passed. That will increase rates by $5.50 for most residents and will increase rates by 85-cents for those 60 years of age and older.

An ordinance reducing the salaries of all city council members and the president by five-percent passed.

An ordinance to partially fund a project to update stadium field lighting at Gant Municipal Stadium was tabled for three months.

This was the last meeting for President of Council Ralph Hennessey, who will be replaced by Councilman-at-Large Dan Vincent. This was also the last meeting for council members Kevin McPeek and DJ Dittmar.