LEXINGTON, Ky. (4/10/13) – Mayor Jim Gray released his proposed budget for fiscal year 2013-2014, which he said will get spending under control and help reach his goal of getting debt service under ten percent of revenue by 2016.
–Mayor’s Proposed FY14 Budget is a $297 spending plan, a 2.7% increase over the FY13 forecast.
–No broad-based tax increases.
–Limited bonding … $15.7 million … to invest in infrastructure.
–Funding for 35 new firefighters, 28 funded through the Safer Grant, and the addition of another emergency medical ambulance.
–Funding for the Homelessness Office to coordinate services and intervene where needed, a goal identified by the Mayor’s Commission on Homelessness.
–$5 million to purchase land and design a new senior citizens center.
–$150,000 for multi-use fields to accommodate soccer, football, field hockey, lacrosse and more.
–Funding for youth activities including the “I Do’ initiative and camps for children with mental and physical disabilities.
–$117,000 to improve maintenance of our greenways in neighborhoods.
–$300,000 in the historic courthouse to make repairs.
–Invest $250,000 to match private fund-raising to update the Kentucky Theatre.
–Increase strategic police overtime funds for neighborhoods.
–Improve public safety by improving their equipment – police cruisers, fire trucks, EMS buggies, radios, clothing and cardiac monitors.
–Add a Chief Information Officer, a commissioner-level position, to lead information technology initiatives, strategically and operationally, with a focus on transparency and innovation.
–A one percent addition to the franchise fee to pay for streetlights in neighborhoods and along major thoroughfares.
The Mayor acknowledged the difficult decisions that were made to cut costs. Major sources of savings in the budget came from employee health insurance reform, which has now been in effect for a full year, pension reform, and savings from union contracts.
Information provided by Susan Straub
Photo provided by SurfKY Graphics
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