News
11:52 am
Fri November 16, 2012

Coleman Releases Proposed 2013 City Budget

Columbus Mayor Michael Coleman's proposed 2013 municipal budget boosts spending by 3.7 percent and adds 10 million dollars to the city's rainy day fund. Jim Letizia reports.

 The increase to a 766 million dollar budget is due largely to increased costs for fuel and other materials, wage increases, and Coleman's desire to put more money into the rainy day fund. The 13th budget of his tenure decidates the same percentage of money - 70 percent - to police and fire services as
this year. Coleman says there will be new classes of police and fire recruits, and the budget continues to fund his anti-crime initiatives, such as targeted law enforcement blitzes in high crime neighborhoods and youth outreach programs.


Coleman.....................strike force.......................


Coleman says 3-thousand young people have participated in his APPS program held at local recreation centers. Coleman proposes increasing funding for tourism, the arts and human services by 3-point-5 million dollars through the reallocation of nearly all of the city's share of the hotel-motel tax.
He says the city's convention and visitors bureau will get 7.3 million dollars, up from nearly 4.8 this year, to create jobs and help local businesses.


Coleman.................spend money............................


Coleman says The Greater Columbus Arts Council will get 5.3 million dollars, a funding boost of 600-thousand. Human services spending will also increase.


Coleman...................resources..............................


After Columbus voters agreed to a half percent income tax hike in 2009, Coleman promised to replenish the rainy day fund that had been nearly  depleated by two recessions. He wanted it to hold 50-million dollars by 2014. Coleman's budget calls for a 50-million dollar rainy day fund next year, and he wants to boost that even futher in the future.


Coleman .....................are ready...........................


Coleman said the city has also fulfilled its promises to the voters of cutting spending on employee pensions and health care. He says the city has reduced pension contributions by 200 million dollars largly by elminating pickups for new workers and phaseouts for existing workers. And Coleman says
the city is operating more efficiently.


Coleman.....................to serve..............................:


City finance officials say spending this year will be 12-million dollars less
than budgeted, a carryover amount city council could use to amend Coleman's
proposal. Council will hold hearings on the budget and any amendments before
enacting a final spending blueprint on February 4th.