City Council proposes FY2018 budget

Published 8:23 pm Tuesday, September 5, 2017

The Bainbridge City Council entered a special called meeting Tuesday to hear the 2018 fiscal year proposed budget.

Absent council members were Glennie Bench and Kregg Close.

The City Council’s budget goals and objectives for the year are to create revenue enhancements and budgeting, future zoning maps, solid paying jobs, blighted property and street improvements, keep street signs and Neighborhood Watch signs clean, reduce taxes and create new models for the Housing Authority.

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The council is predicting that property and sales taxes will continue to decline, franchise taxes will decline, revenues other than transfers will decrease by 4 percent, healthcare costs will continue to outperform the industry and depreciation will be completely funded.

The general fund has been budgeted for $10,647,426. Although the city has $1,435,244 allocated in reserves, the auditors would prefer between $2-3 million. The capital projects and enterprise vehicle, such as the fleet line, have been moved to the general fund.

Administrations budgeted $15,000 last year for maintenance, but have already spent $30,000, so they have increased their budget to $37,000. The expense has risen because of the amount of people paying with credit or debit cards in City Hall instead of sending checks or paying online.  Administration is also budgeting for a new roof in the main city hall building, purchasing building and the water and sewer building. Administration did report they are continuing to save money by housing inmates with the Decatur County inmates.

Bainbridge Public Safety reported an increase in general liability insurance along with worker’s compensation insurance. This past year it was over budget, so they tried to compensate for it this year. They had not had an increase in general liability for a while, so they felt like it was time. Employee training also increased in budget, because they have more people attending school.

Public Works and Maintenance reported an increase. Georgia Power is putting in new LED street lights that will costs a reported $7,200 more. It gives off more light, but was mandated by the power company, since they are switching over everything to LED power.

Planning and zoning will have an increase primarily because they have hired a planner. However, they did decrease $15,000 in code enforcement because of animal control coding, which they did not foresee. Community Development Administration went up $30,000 over last year because of Oscar Jackson Camp, which they did not account for prior. They reported not seeing a change in the enterprise fleet management and still having two trucks hanging on by a thread.

Water and Sewer reported that meters have stayed the same, but the treatment plant has capital of $125,000 for a new grid chamber and other repairs the treatment plant may need.

Telecommunications concluded the proposed budget, with no major changes being heard.

The Council adjourned and plans to meet again Monday to finalize the budget.