The Guthrie city council unanimously approved a $32M budget for the upcoming fiscal year. City Manager Leroy Alsup says the budget will allow an increase in personnel.
In May 2017, Alsup informed city council members that the City was not broke or bankrupt, but if they continued their current spending ways they could go down that path. Related article: City of Guthrie makes adjustments, cuts on city staff to help budget
To correct the path, in part, the City realigned staff, including cutting and eliminating positions (11 in all).
With the changes, along with a 10 percent increase in sales tax and cautious budgeting by department heads, the City will begin the fiscal year with a beginning balance of almost $1.2M compared to $473,519 in 2017.
“Our ending balance is going in the right direction,” Alsup added.
Alsup announced the City will begin restoring 10 full-time positions over the course of the year (as the cash flow allows), including three firefighters and one position each for the police department, waste water plant, fleet maintenance, parks, streets, library and the planning department.
“Our departments have done an omens job of doing these tasks with skeleton crews,” Alsup said. “We can not continue to run with limited crews forever. With the sales tax being up 10 percent, we want to start moving back and putting those positions back into place.”
In addition, every position in the City will now work at a minimum of $10 per hour.
The City will also begin to hold back $300,000 ($150,000 from both the general fund and the public works fund) for the future construction of a new Waste Water Treatment Plant.