Trenton City Budget Approved, Layoffs Still Possible
Though a budget has been approved, contract negotiations between city administrators and police and fire continue.
Trenton City Council members approved the 2012-13 budget Monday night at Trenton City Hall, which will likely jumpstart contract negotiations with police and fire according to City Administrator Jim Wagner.
Though the budget itself does not include layoffs, Wagner said layoffs could still be possible.
"There are no layoffs at the present time," Wagner said. "If we get contracts that are workable, and based upon the assumptions of the budget, there will be no layoffs."
Wagner added he and other Trenton officials have set meetings with police and fire personnel to try to come to an agreement.
To balance the budget after a $3.1 million shortfall council members included a tax increase of three mills. The increase would be the equivalent of about $3 per $1,000 of taxable property value for residents.
The increase did not require a vote by residents because a limited number of mills are allowed for regular city services like garbage pickup and emergency services. Trenton has not exceeded the cap, though the increase has has brought the city very close.
The budget requires taking $250,000 from the fund balance, but Wagner said the important thing is that people get to keep their jobs.
To maintain the budget, Wagner said the city has been placed on an indefinite hiring freeze for full and part-time positions, except for seasonal employees.
Trenton Fire Chief Bruce Vick's request for three additional fire fighters was not approved in the budget.
"I think the council had a very difficult time, based upon the current economy and the issues that the city faced ... they did not take it lightly, they took it seriously," Wagner said.