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SCSQUARED halfBy Eric Heinz

City Finance Manager Judi Vincent and Assistant Manager Erik Sund presented the fiscal year 2016 city’s total budget during the Tuesday City Council meeting, and council approved it unanimously. The budget calls for more than $125 million in revenues and $133 million in expenditures, with sustainable operating funds.

“We do have a balanced budget, which means our operating expenditures in the general fund do not exceed operating revenues,” Vincent said.

Reserves are something the city will continue to monitor, but Sund said the city has been analyzing those funds.

Although the city is seeing a steep increase in project expenditures, he said the city will maintain its budget in that sector.

“While we do forecast in future years outlying potential deficits, we’re never going to allow ourselves to go into deficits,” Sund said. “What that means is we’ll do less projects or we’ll do other things to bring our operating position to a positive, like we’ve always done in recent years.”

The police services contract for the next fiscal year is $12.7 million, about 2.6 percent higher than the prior year. Vincent said this is because of a “multitude of items” increasing and decreasing in expense.

“The biggest change is the de-funding of two positions that are currently vacant,” she said.

Mayor Chris Hamm said he was in favor of approving the contract with the OCSD but would not be in favor of more cuts in the next three years to services. Councilman Tim Brown alluded to the city mulling bringing back one of the positions, but there was no dollar amount reflected in the budget. The positions could be brought back mid-year if council chooses.

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