Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Fortuna Facing Big Budget Cuts

Posted By on Tue, Apr 9, 2013 at 4:48 PM

The City of Fortuna is facing a $435,669 shortfall this coming fiscal year and will have to make what a news release from the city today calls "significant cuts to the City budget":

"The City Council is resolute about addressing this financial situation at the earliest possible opportunity and is prepared to make tough decisions to regain the very conservative budgeting practices that led to the development of solid reserves for the City over the past 20 years. The Council has also stated that use of reserves to provide services over the next fiscal year is not desired and will only be the last option."

Regan Candelario, who has been the city manager since September last year, said by phone this afternoon that where the cuts might occur has not been decided yet. He said staff will be looking at all areas of city government for ways to trim expenses.

The new release lists some of the financial challenges the city faces:

... a direct and unavoidable increase of 10% in healthcare costs and a direct increase of 1.5% for retirement benefits ...

... flat and declining revenues in most all categories ...

... the loss of Redevelopment revenues that was equivalent to 10% of the general fund - for services the city continues to provide ...

... downward trends for sales tax revenues and property tax revenue which comprises 25% of the general fund revenue ...

Candelario said some charts will be up by the end of today on the city's website detailing "some basic stuff about recent increases in health care costs, retirement benefits, gas" and so on.

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Heidi Walters

Heidi Walters worked as a staff writer at the North Coast Journal from 2005 to 2015.

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