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Finance Committee Suggest Heavy Budget Cuts For City To Get City Back to Black


CIRCLEVILE –  Finance Committee met yesterday March 5, 2019 to discuss a very large 2.9 million dollar budget cut that looms over the city administration.  “Cuts will be needed by the beginning of April to be compliant and be in the black,” said City Auditor Gayle Spangler.

Total budget amount is around 25 million dollars and cutting 2.9 million from that fund came at a high cost to the City of Circleville.  Though some of these cuts are severe and will impact services in Circleville, some of these cuts were monies in the budget that were not used.

Audio of last nights council meeting to follow along with cut reports in on the bottom of the page.  Hopefully this will help everyone get their heads around the massive cuts we are dealing with.  Most notable are reductions in Fire and Police forces and huge cuts to all maintenance.

Finance committee does have a answer to the safety force cuts that may elevate future cuts in this section by asking the public to approve a 1/2% 0r .5% increase in the city tax rate from 2.0% to 2.5% this would create a 1.5 million dollar fund that would directly go to support and operations of safety forces.  This has been proposed to be a special election held on August 6, 2019 for city vote.

Here is a list of the reductions to get the city back to black, the city must be in the black by the beginning of April to be compliant with State regulations.

Reduction of Civil Police 11,200, reductions in hospitalization costs and VWC costs.

Reductions to uniform police 70,000 this is the reduction of unfunding two police officers, these police officers have already left to other jobs in other cities.  Circleville Police department just will not fill these positions leaving the City police department at 19 total. According to Chief Baer, “this may reduce some police coverage of the city.”

Parks and Recreation 27,300, 25,300 dollars of that is out of that cut will be monies donated to the park and won’t affect service.  The rest of that budget cut will be shutting lights off at Ted Louis park.  Don Sherman suggested we shut the park off at the other park also even though it wouldn’t be a heavy saving, but just to be fair to everyone.

Reduction in zone enforcement 23,770, 21,770 of those dollars are for contract enforcement officer that will be unfunded, Hargus creek cleanup reduction of 2,000 dollars this is simply for tree clean up around Hargus Lake, removing trees or brush from water edges.

Basic Utilites 17,000 Storm water compliance reduced by 15,000 and storm water maintenance by 2,000.  This monies are budgeted and a “guesstimate.” According to Don Sherman Utility director they only had one needed repair last year for this budget at 4,800 dollars.  This year they already have a needed repair estimate 3-4 thousand and he’s hoping with these cuts he doesn’t have many because he will not have the money to repair.

Street department and general fund safety equipment by 1,500 dollars.

Human resources cutting 13,700, Human resources planned on buying software this year for 13,500 they won’t purchase, and 200 for forms and documents.

Mayors line he’s cutting outside legal by 5,000 dollars.

Auditors office is cutting her part time person by reducing hours, reducing computer support and contract services by 6,562.

Treasurers office supplies and personal training by 500 dollars

Civil Service is reducing costs by 1,900 dollars civil service employee by 1,400 dollars and supplies by 500 dollars.

Service department cuts 1000 dollars tree service, building maintenance by 20,000 dollars, 15,000 to Everts maintenance for a total of 36,000.  This eliminates any replacement of lights or air conditioners or any building maintenance needs for the year according to Don Sherman.

Reducing various personal items from General Government 91,538 4,000 for workers comp and 18,000 workers comp, also various supplies and computer support, and utilities.  Various unused budgets that could be reduced to 0 like deductibles that wouldn’t be needed for 2019.

Retirement fund for the year 30,000 reduction left 10,000 dollars in the fund to cover one retirement that is anticipated this year.

General fund reductions 320,970 dollars 

Fund 202 income tax fund 20,800 this consists of RITA reductions income revenue is down.

Street construction fund reduced 25,000 dollars for hospitalizations.

Fund 204 10,000 

Fund 208 500.00 drug fund 

Fund 211 cable television fund reductions 59,000. 1000 dollars came out of furniture and fixtures, 5000 equipment maintenance, and 53,000 came out of new equipment that will not be bought this year.

Fund 212 Police department Salary and wages 237,772 dollars this defunds two police officers, a reduction of Travel.Transportation, Capital Outlay, Debt Services, Contractual Services, and Supplies/Incidentals/Maintenance. According to Chief Baer these three positions were vacancies from a retirement and a  two officers leaving they will only hire one new officer, this is a reduction in force.

Fire Department fund 207,911.00 136,121.00 unfunding all part time firefighters and a full time firefighter for half the year. The also will be reduced Travel/Transportation, Capital Outlay, Debt Services, Contractual Services, Supplies  68,011.00.  The part time firefighters (5) have already been notified of the layoff, the full time firefighter has already put in his resignation for June and they will just not fill that position this year.

Fund 213 drug enforcement fund 2,957.00 this is some travel/transportation, Capital outlay, debt services, contractual services, and supplies/incidentals/Maintenance.

Safety Forces .1% income tax fund 11,549.00 reductions to 100% police and fire pensions from not filling positions.

Fund 217  Police & Fire Disability & Pension Fund 8,000 real estate taxes are down and reducing by 8,000 dollars.

Section 13 Municipal immobilizing or disabling devices fund 220 7,500 special devices they have for immobilization items for cars.

Capital Fund 306 Capital Improvement fund 35,000 dollars Police department cuts new cruisers from the budget they asked for.

Transportation budget 61,876.00 10,000 for street equipment, 10,000 for another street equipment, cut for new dump truck.  One of these items was a hot box a piece of equipment that helps patch pot holes better using hot asphalt vs cold fill.

Building maintenance and repair 177,500.00 100,000 HVAC upgrades phase 2 police department on court, 30,000 generator, and fire station two upgrades.  Those projects will not go forth this year.

Water Administration fund this is a realignment of staffing and getting rid of staffing that was budgeted but not used for years, 10,900 dollars plus other department functions like travel/Transportation, Capital overlay, debt services, contractual services, supplies for a total of 20,317.00 reduction.

Water and maintenance and distribution more alignment in staffing, increase in indirect costs.  35,104.00 reduction, “Most of these adjustments of the utility audits, we don’t budget well here, we are just adjusting these budget to closer to actual budgets,” said Don Sherman.

Water Plant reductions 111,869.00 personal was adjustment, mostly.  Basically that have not been filled for many years, some of them for ten years.  “Revenue and Budgeting never matches this is bringing it closer to actual cost,” said Don Sherman.

Total Water Sewer Operating Fund 808 567,290.00  this is a reduction of water main & Distribution transfers.

Water Plant Rehabilitation fund 838 reducing 200,000 

Sanitary Sewer Operating fund reductions in personnel for 11,298.00 and mapping project 20,000 GSi.  total cuts 31,298.00. 

Sewer Maintenance and Distribution this is a cut of 50,000 for new meters, new equipment reduction of 42,500, and some misc. total cuts 100,720.00 dollars. 

Wastewater Plant 47 reductions 20,000 energy costs, 31,106.00 personnel cuts, Travel, capital overlay, debt services, contactual services 5, Supplies/Incidentals/Maintenance total reduction 244,967.00. Inter fund transfer 9 sewer admin 45, Dist. & Maint 46, WWTP 47 400,000 dollars reductions, this is water and sewer monies.  Total reduction 777,219.00

Sanitary Sewer operating fund 920 reducing department function by reduction travel transportation, Capital outlay, debt services, contractual services, supplies/incidentals/maintenance for a total cut of 200,000 dollars 

Sewer replacement fund 934 reduces department function more travel, capital outlay, debt services, contractual services, supplies/incidentals/maintenance 90,000 dollars.