Minden Press-Herald

Wednesday
Oct 01st

City budget tight

city_of_mindenIf approved, the City of Minden will be heading into its 2011-2012 fiscal year with a proposed budget of just over $33 million and a shortfall of around $499,000.

But don't be fooled by the numbers. Minden Mayor Bill Robertson said that while it shows a shortfall, the budget is balanced with money in reserve to more than cover the deficit amount.

"This is a bare bones budget," Robertson said. "It's a tight budget. But we're not broke, nor are we in a bad financial state. The figures we have come up with are realistic, if not optimistic. Our expenses are close, so we may have to amend it some time during the year."

Budget numbers for the city in 2010-2011 came in at $27 million, with revenue at $24.5 million. The budget for the upcoming fiscal year includes $3.5 million in grant monies.

Robertson said the main adjustments for the coming fiscal year were made due to a rise in insurance costs for city employees on all levels, a rise in retirement benefits and a drop in payoff from investments.

"Because we're self-funded on insurance, we made adjustments adding a total of 12 percent in expenses," Robertson said. "Starting October 1, we will have to increase the employees' part to six percent more than they are paying now."

Faced with a poor economy, most city departments asked the council for ittle more than they had in the past fiscal year.

In an effort to bring the police department technologically up to date, requests for computers and reporting systems were granted.

In the fire department, the few requests that were made should contribute to lowering the department's fire rating.

In the light and water department, software upgrades will allow for online payment of utility bills, as well as other benefits to be announced at a later date.

A public hearing on the proposed budget will take place before the next Minden City Council meeting, beginning at 7 p.m. Tuesday, September 6.

Last Updated ( August 22, 2011 )  

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