The final city budget has been approved. It is a solid document considering the trials and tribulations Everett is facing.
The Everett city budget for Fiscal Year 2012 is $145.1 million, which includes the new enterprise fund for water and sewer charges ,which amounts to more than $12 million.
The budget is up more than $6 million over last year, which is par for the course.
These days, cities and towns have so many fixed costs that are rising naturally every year that even the deepest budget cutting can’t stop at least a 4% rise just for basics like city employee health insurance and pensions, vacations and overtime, benefits and buyouts.
Residents must also keep in mind that the state is giving back less and less money every year to the cities and towns, which exacerbates the budget making process.
As we reported last week, the mayor is saving money in some places by trimming staff and is hiring in places where added staff is necessary.
This budget is the handiwork of the mayor and as such, he deserves a round of applause for keeping a cap on spending without sinking the ship of state.
Cutbacks of all kinds have slightly eroded the city’s ability to meet rising demand.
To that end, the mayor has promised to maintain his administration as the most proactive in this city’s modern history.
Despite going up against the powerful remnants of a lingering recession, DeMaria has succeeded in moving the city upstream, so to speak.
Everett finds itself in the enviable position of having a stabilization fund of more than $9M, a great industrial tax base and an efficient city government.
The process this year was almost entirely absent of contentiousness, which shows where everyone’s thinking was at.
Government should be collegial, anyway.
Nice work, Mayor DeMaria, the Common Council and the Board of Aldermen.