City Council Members Debate Cuts

8 years 1 month 3 weeks ago Tuesday, August 31 2010 Aug 31, 2010 Tuesday, August 31, 2010 4:20:56 AM CDT August 31, 2010 in News
COLUMBIA- In July, City Manager Bill Watkins proposed cutting eight firefighting positions to save Columbia about $608,000. Now it is up to the city council to execute its budget plan.

Third Ward Councilman, Gary Kespohl, is proposing that almost $700,000 in cuts come from different areas, other than public safety. Kespohl says the city can cut $250,000 from training and travel in the city's general fund. He says there's $100,000 in the old contingency fund that has not been used in 15 years. Another $140,000 can come from changes in parking utilities. He says almost another $300,000 dollars can be cut in other areas.

"He [Watkins] says we have the same number of firefighters we had a year ago, that's true, but we opened a new fire station, and manned a new fire station, so we should have more firefighters than we had a year ago," says Kespohl.

The Watkins says cutting the vacant firefighter positions would be the most effective. The council will meet on Sept. 7th for final considerations.


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