JAMESTOWN – The Jamestown City Council will meet Monday in city hall for its monthly voting session. During the meeting, council members are expected to vote on the proposed $35.7 million 2018 city budget.
When the budget was presented by Mayor Sam Teresi in October, it included a $947,000 deficit. Since the budget presentation, the council has held numerous meetings to learn more about the budget, but as of today, no member has yet to introduce an amendment to address the spending gap. That’s mostly due to city officials waiting to see if Albany will be willing to provide additional state aid to Jamestown for 2018, as it has done for the current fiscal year.
Last year the council had a similar situation, with a budget gap of more than $825,0000. That deficit was only eliminated after the city learned that the state would offer additional funding.
The council held a public hearing on the budget last week. During that meeting, city resident Doug Champ criticized city council members for accepting an unbalanced budget from the mayor, as well as not proposing any amendments to the budget prior to the public hearing. He said that was in violation of the city charter, which outlines the budget process and states that the mayor is to present a balanced budget and the council should present any amendments before a public hearing is held.
The 2018 executive budget also includes a proposed tax levy increase of $167,712, or 1.1 percent and removes $50,000 in funding from the James Prendergast Library, cutting its funding in half from the current fiscal year.
It’s expected that any amendments to the budget will be presented on the floor prior to the vote of the final spending plan.
Monday’s voting session begins at 7:30 p.m. and is open to the public.