Laurel Council Begins Work on 2013 Budget
Budget remains mostly flat from previous year.
The Laurel Council is poised to begin discussing a proposed budget for the city for fiscal year 2013.
This week city officials presented the first draft of the $25.7 million budget to the council. Slightly higher than the previous year’s budget by $471,000, planners said expenditures would be virtually flat.
“We’ve been able to maintain services and make do where we need to,” said Michelle Saylor, director of budget personnel for the city.
Last year, the city maneuvered around a $3 million budget deficit by freezing pay raises for city employees. But this year, Saylor said the city plans to partially reinstate raises, including merit-based raises, but will continue to hold off on cost-of-living increases.
Saylor said that the city is still scraping together funds to pay for the retirement pension fund. This year the city plans to pay $1.6 million, up from $1.5 million last year.
The Laurel Council will begin work sessions on the budget next month and will hold a meeting on May 2 and May 9 to discuss it. Saylor said the goal is to have the budget approved by the mayor and council by May 14, and it would take effect on July 1 of this year.