Hoping that a few more weeks will provide a clearer picture of what the city can expect from the state and federal governments, officials are scrambling to delay the mandated adoption of
City law currently requires that a joint session of the City Council and Board of Finance adopt a budget for the following fiscal year on the third Monday of May.
But officials are looking to change the deadline – at least for this year – so that the joint meeting could take place as late as June 5.
Mayor Art Ward said that leaders “hope to have a better idea what dollars are coming in” if they wait a little longer to polish off the spending plan for the fiscal year that begins July 1.
Though state lawmakers warn the legislature may not have a budget in place for months, city Comptroller Glenn Klocko said that
Officials have tentatively agreed to hold the Joint Board session that would adopt the final budget on Thursday, June 4.
The budget deadline change “would appear to be a non-controversial matter,” city attorney Dale Clift said.
A public hearing has been slated for 5 p.m. on Monday, April 27 in the meeting room on the first floor of City Hall. Following it in short order will be an Ordinance Committee meeting and a special City Council session to rush through the revised timetable.
The city has to act swiftly because the law can’t take effect until 14 days after it is published following the council’s adoption of the revised ordinance. If that doesn’t happen before May 18, then the current law remains in effect.
Clift said he envisions the deadline change as applying only to this year.
But it is a common complaint every year at City Hall that local officials have to set a budget before they know the particulars of state aid.
So it would not be surprising if the new deadline is used again in future years.
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