The Laurel City Council voted this week to approve its 2013 fiscal year budget.
There were few surprises in the $25.7 million budget, which marks a more than $470,000 increase from the fiscal year 2012 budget.
Last year, the city by freezing pay raises for city employees. But this year, the city plans to partially reinstate raises, including merit-based raises, but will continue to hold off on cost-of-living increases.
The city also plans to add funds to the retirement pension fund. This year the city plans to pay $1.6 million, up from the $1.5 million in the 2012 budget.
Real property tax rates will remain steady at 71 cents per $100 of the assessed property valuation. Personal property tax rates will also remain the same at $1.69 per $100 of the assessed valuation.
Mayor Craig Moe said in a letter last month to residents that he was pleased with the budget's outcome, including pension funding and the continued funding of his summer jobs program.
"All city services are continued at current levels. I am pleased to advise you that the proposed FY 2013 budget will restore employee earned step increases beginning July 1," he said. "...Funding for the Mayor’s Summer Jobs Program and the Voucher Program will continue. Twelve positions have been budgeted for a period of eight weeks."
Expenditures for the city will also see a slight increase. Public safety continues to be the department where the city spends the most money. Fiscal Year 2013 will see $7.8 million spent within the department, 31 percent of all department spending. Non-departmental spending follows with $6.6 million, or 26 percent.
Click here to read the city's entire budget.