There will be no new tax increases for residents of Syracuse, according to Mayor DeLore Thurgood. "We've been holding the line," Thurgood told the City Council just before it adopted a tentative budget for 1991-92.
Thurgood credited Michael Moyes, the city manager, and other city employees for doing an excellent job at keeping costs down in contrast to the budget deficits being experienced by many neighboring cities.Thurgood said that sales tax revenue accounts for 60 percent of the budget and that R.C. Willey Home Furnishings is by far the main source of that fund with 85-90 percent of all sales in the city. He cautioned that a bad economy could seriously affect the home furnishing store's revenues and thus the city's budget.
Next year's general budget is down 16 percent from last year but that's all attributable to the lack of any community block grant funds being included in the 1991-92 budget.
One new aspect of this year's budget is the inclusion of the youth city council's projected revenues and expenditures. In the past, it was next to impossible to audit the youth council's budget.
Thurgood also said that he is expecting a $3,000 decrease in revenues from court fines this year, explaining that the city just isn't issuing as many traffic tickets as it used to, probably because of the lack of a reserve officer in the city.
The city is expected to have a $9,500 increase in revenue because it has joined the state's bonding pool and will earn a higher interest income.
The council may slightly adjust the budget to include spending additional money on its new computer (purchased from the 1990-91 budget) so that it can keep a log of cemetery plots.
The new budget includes a 3 percent cost-of-living increase to all city employees, plus a 1 percent cash bonus for Christmas. It also includes an 18.5 percent increase in the city's share of employee medical premiums.
The new budget includes $14,000 to purchase a three-quarter-ton truck for the parks department and $12,100 for a new police vehicle.
A public hearing on the budget is planned for June 25.
Syracuse tentative budget
General fund $672,800 $794,800
Police $187,785 $180,351
Fire $ 37,058 $ 28,231
Utilities $432,090 $400,104
Property taxes $ 75,000 $73,074
Sales Taxes $380,000 $395,000
Public hearing: Tuesday, June 25, 7 p.m. at City Hall.