Columbia approves 2018 budget after $1 million in cuts

1 year 23 hours 17 seconds ago Monday, September 18 2017 Sep 18, 2017 Monday, September 18, 2017 10:33:00 PM CDT September 18, 2017 in News
By: Danielle Katz, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - The city council voted on Columbia's 2018 fiscal year budget Monday night after a work session and public hearing. In order to increase general fund revenue, the city will make departmental budget cuts worth $1.1 million.

City Manager Mike Matthes submitted the budget to the city council in July. The Columbia City Council held four public hearings on the budget.

“We are looking at lean years ahead. We will have to change how we have always done things if we want to thrive as an organization dedicated to the service of others," Matthes said in his budget message.

The city council faces reductions in Columbia's general fund because of less revenue but also is planning for less spending. 

The city council voted not to raise utility rates as planned. It wanted to increase the electric rate by 1 percent and the water rate by 4 percent, but expressed some concerns with the Columbia Water and Light Advisory Board. It approved the water rate increase but denied the electric rate increase.

Third Ward council member Karl Skala said there was controversy over whether the board turned in financial reports on time. 

“We’ve all been in this boat because of the switch over to a very expensive but comprehensive new software system for billing," Skala said.

Second Ward council member Michael Trapp said he supported the electric utility increase because it was necessary to pay for operational expenses and needed capital investments.

"Delaying them will require steeper rate increases in the future and risk the city's bond rating. Even with the rate increase we are projected to fall short of our financial targets for reserves," Trapp said.

The city council has also made cuts in the IT and custodial departments and will continue a hiring freeze for the city's fire and police departments. One of the city's goals for 2018 is to avoid laying off full-time employees.

Matthes said the city's biggest challenges are low sales tax growth, rising health care and pension costs and high transit costs.

The city planned to raise paratransit costs per ride and eliminate three public bus routes since current transportation costs are exceeding revenue by $600,000.

Columbia's sales tax growth has also steadily declined since the 2011 fiscal year, when it was 5.8 percent, to a projected 1 percent for 2018. Skala said this is due to a large increase in online sales. 

Skala said a use tax voted on in November could recover up to $1 million per year.

More News

Grid
List
JEFFERSON CITY - After being inactive for nearly a year, the Missouri Board of Education is launching a search for... More >>
8 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 7:06:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - State Rep. Cheri Toalson Reisch, R-Hallsville, is changing the way she is fundraising after an ethics complaint and... More >>
9 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 6:17:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Jefferson City Police Department was on the scene of a double shooting Wednesday afternoon. Police... More >>
9 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 6:00:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – Some people living in Columbia's southside neighborhoods say thieves, using creative technology, are stealing from cars. Haley... More >>
9 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 5:28:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - As Welcome Home marks the first anniversary of its new shelter, a once drug-addicted veteran is artfully finding... More >>
11 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 4:19:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
FULTON- After the State Auditor's report that more local money could go to domestic violence shelters, one survivor reiterated the... More >>
11 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 3:52:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA – Wednesday morning firefighters burned a simulated dorm room burn on the MU campus to show students how quickly... More >>
12 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 3:13:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
COLE COUNTY – Cole County ended its economic development contract with the Jefferson City Area Chamber of Commerce Tuesday. The... More >>
12 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 2:32:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
MEXICO - Sen. Claire McCaskill has announced she will oppose Judge Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation to the Supreme Court. McCaskill's... More >>
12 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 2:30:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A former prosecutor and chairman of Missouri's Democratic Party has been sentenced to two years and... More >>
13 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 1:55:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Fire Department ruled a Wednesday morning fire as suspicious. There were no injuries, but the... More >>
13 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 1:28:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - As rivers are still rising in the aftermath of Hurricane Florence, donations are also flooding in. However,... More >>
14 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 1:01:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
SEDALIA (AP) — A Kansas City man has pleaded guilty in the fatal shooting of another man at a trailer... More >>
14 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 12:51:00 PM CDT September 19, 2018 in Top Stories
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — The search for Missouri's next top education official has begun. The State Board of Education... More >>
15 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 11:24:10 AM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
FULTON - UPDATE: Police have found the two boys who escaped from the Division of Youth Services. Police said... More >>
16 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 10:38:00 AM CDT September 19, 2018 in Top Stories
HOWARD COUNTY - Two people are dead and two others injured after a crash on Highway 87 Tuesday afternoon. ... More >>
17 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 9:51:00 AM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
COOPER COUNTY - Anthony Martin died in a crash in Cooper County on Sunday after losing control of his motorcycle.... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 6:57:00 AM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
CAMDEN COUNTY - A Columbia woman was taken to the Lake Regional Hospital on Sunday after a crash involving a... More >>
20 hours ago Wednesday, September 19 2018 Sep 19, 2018 Wednesday, September 19, 2018 6:39:00 AM CDT September 19, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 76°
4am 76°
5am 75°
6am 75°
7am 75°