Mayor Jeff Pond and the City Council have another two weeks to make changes to a tentative budget of $6.2 million for 2007-08 that calls for a 7 percent property tax increase.
Officials concluded meetings this week to pare requests from departments and set revenues. A vote to adopt a tentative budget will be held at 7 p.m. Feb. 14 in the Municipal Center during the next Council session.
Meanwhile, the budget is subject to revisions and the setting of salaries. No money has been added to increase salaries for the mayor, who earns $12,000 a year, or each of the five aldermen, who earn $7,000 each. Two-year terms for each expire Dec. 31.
Still to be factored in are department head salaries and wages for unionized workers, including the city Police Department, which has 19 full-time officers, up from 12, who were hired because of the opening of the Seneca Allegany Casino & Hotel.
The fiscal year begins April 1.
The tentative budget is up from $5.2 million and features a projected tax levy of $1,039,122 and a tax rate of $50.91 per $1,000 of assessed valuation, up from $47.41.
The taxable assessed value for 2007-08 is up $241,000, to $20,412,632 for next year.
The proposed tax levy of $1,039,122 is up from $979,220 and marks the first time it has grown to more than $1 million.
The proposed spending plan calls for revenue of $4,892,856, up from $3,873,848. The budget includes $272,500 from surplus to help keep the tax increase down. Projected casino revenue is $1,979,298, up by $360,000 from this year.
The Council also considered other budget options which would have resulted in tax increases of 11 and 13 percent.
The public hearing on the plan is scheduled for 6 p.m. Feb. 21