Toledo amends 2016 budget, stops some hires and travel

Toledo amends 2016 budget, stops some hires and travel
(Source: WTOL)

TOLEDO, OH (WTOL) - At an amended budget meeting Thursday, Toledo Mayor Paula Hicks-Hudson kicked things off by saying the city is not hiring non-essential employees and will be prohibiting non-essential travel.

Then members of Toledo City Council were presented with the amended 2016 budget.

The proposed 2016 budget, with the amended changes, now sits at $253.8 million. That's up from the $252.1 million originally proposed in November.

Nine amendments to the proposed budget were discussed during the two-hour meeting. Some amendments would bring the city more money, like collecting more than anticipated in income tax.

"I believe one time bonuses from the auto-manufacturers, as well as the 13th period produced an additional pay period, that brought our final income tax numbers to right at about $168.9 million," said Clarence Coleman, City Treasurer.

But the majority of the amendments will cost the city more money, totaling an additional $1.7 million.

That includes $50,000 to pay for a company to break down the city's costs and make it a more efficient spender of your money.

Dr. Cecelia Adams, councilwoman, says when Toledo Public Schools did that, they spent $200,000.

"I think you've under-budgeted. So you're going to be shocked when you find out that if a very thorough review of every single department in the city is done, it's going to cost a whole lot more than $50,000," said Adams.

Noticeably absent in the 2016 budget is money for residential road repair. Following the failure of Issue 2, Mayor Hicks-Hudson says the city will use any extra money for safe neighborhoods and street repairs.

Tom Waniewski, councilman, says it's up to council members to demand roads get fixed.

"For us to say 'we hope you'll look at some things, if you find 10 cents in the couch could you try to pave the roads?' This is ridiculous, We ought to set an agenda and say 'here's what we're going to do, here's what you're going to trim, because you will be doing roads this year," said Waniewski.

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