With little fanfare, Mayor Carlo DeMaria submitted his $132.865M operating budget to run the City of Everett for Fiscal Year 2012 at a joint meeting of the Board of Aldermen and Common Council on Monday night.
DeMaria pointed out that city departments like the police and fire “will have the tools they need to effectively protect our streets and homes.” DeMaria closed his remarks to the Aldermen and Councilors asking for “collegial cooperation.”
While the budget appears to be down substantially from last year’s budget of $139.387M, the explanation is the establishment this year of the Enterprise Fund. This measure allows the water and sewer receipts not only to be taken out of the revenue side of the city budget but also the associated expenses from the cost side. The reason for establishing an Enterprise Fund was for city officials to have better accounting handle for these services.
DeMaria has also put in more than $1.2M for capital improvements for parks and roadways.
The budget for the schools will be more than $57M of the $139M. (See related story on page 1.)
Alderman Robert Van Campen introduced several motions such as if any funds were left over from the current operating budget and the number of employees on the city payroll year to year.
The next step in the coming weeks for the budget process is for the Aldermen and Councilors to review the proposed budget and make changes if they feel that they are in order before they vote to approve the budget.
A potential wild card in proposed budget for Everett officials as well as many other municipalities is a bill that is in the state senate on municipal health care insurance. A bill recently passed by the House of Representatives allows cities and towns to opt into the state health care insurance plan. If passed by the senate, Everett taxpayers could reap a bonanza of more than $1M in savings next year. This savings does not appear in the DeMaria budget.