Stories indexed with the term ‘amendments’

Ann Arbor Budget Deliberations Preview

On Monday, May 17, the Ann Arbor city council will deliberate on the city budget and adopt it with any amendments they agree to make. If they fail to reach agreement on amendments, the city budget proposed by city administrator Roger Fraser will be adopted “as is,” as stipulated in the city charter.

orange juice glass half empty half full

Orange juice is not just a healthy drink. Unlike clear liquids, it's also great for illustrating the classic glass as half empty or half full contrast between optimists and pessimists. Possible budget amendments may depend on how optimistic councilmembers are about state shared revenue. (Photo by the writer.)

Among the amendments that will be brought forward is one that calls for fewer layoffs in the police and fire departments. Instead of eliminating 35 total safety services positions, the amendment would eliminate five firefighters.

The police and fire positions would be maintained through a combination of extra revenue items. One of those is the Ann Arbor Downtown Development Authority’s $2 million payment to the city, which the DDA board approved on May 5.

A second additional revenue item is simply a more optimistic assessment of the prospects that state revenue sharing will remain at current levels next year. The third major additional revenue item comes from increased revenue from parking fines, which the council will also vote on at its Monday meeting. The projected increases in parking fine revenue had not been included in the budget proposed in April by Fraser.

Another budget amendment would tap the additional revenues to maintain human services funding at last year’s levels – right now, there’s a cut in human services amounting to $260,000 in the proposed budget.

The additional revenues would also be used to fund another budget amendment, which would eliminate the proposed football Saturday parking in Allmendinger and Frisinger parks, plus make the mowing cycles in parks more frequent than they would be in the currently proposed budget.

Other amendments that might be brought forward would make changes that would decrease revenue, compared to what is currently proposed, by (i) eliminating an increase in contractor registration fees, (ii) eliminating an increase in rental housing inspection fees, and (iii) reducing the general fund tax administration fee from its current maximum of 1%. A final amendment that might be proposed would eliminate the proposed loading zone permit program, replacing it with increased fines for parking in loading zones, for a small net gain in revenue. [Full Story]