City supervisors approve spending plan with fee hikes
Appeal Staff Writer
The Board of Supervisors opted to increase utility franchise fees and provide money to increase anti-drug activities during the next year fiscal year beginning July 1.
City Manager Linda Ritter’s recommendation to raise franchise fee percentages by 1 percent was approved by the supervisors during a special meeting Thursday evening.
The meeting was scheduled during the evening so residents could make comments about the proposed budget of $117.6 million. No one came, however.
“We’re not done yet,” Ritter said. “This is just policy direction.”
Requested are two more sheriff’s deputies to fight drug-related crimes and a prosecutor in the district attorney’s office to take the cases through court. The group Partnership Carson City, which focuses on halting the use of methamphetamine in the community, would receive $100,000.
Supervisors are expected to approve the budget at noon Monday during a special meeting. It’ll be the last opportunity for residents to comment on the budget, Ritter said.
Four choices were provided to the supervisors Thursday. Each would leave the city with varying degrees of deficit between $232,000 and $1.6 million.
The choice of supervisors – more anti-drug spending and franchise fee hikes – would leave the city with a deficit of $596,000.
It’s an amount Ritter believes can be made up as the year progresses by further curbing expenses, she said.
Franchise fees are added to monthly utility bills issued throughout the city. Proposed increases would bring in more than $1 million a year provided the maximum raises of 1 percent are allowed on natural gas and electricity franchises.
Franchise fees now are 3.5 percent for natural gas and 2.5 percent for electricity.
Adding two new members to the nine-member Sheriff’s Special Enforcement Team would cost $172,119.
An extra criminal prosecutor would bring the total to eight – including Neil Rombardo, district attorney. Cost would be $91,800.
Sheriff Ken Furlong believes no one came to the meeting because they are satisfied with it.
“If it was the wrong decision, the room would have been full,” he said.
• Contact reporter Terri Harber at tharber @nevadaappeal.com or 882-2111, ext. 215.
If you go
WHAT: Carson City Supervisors’ budget hearing
WHEN: Noon on Monday
WHERE: Sierra Room, Community Center, 851 E. William St.
Do your part
The budget has been on the city’s Web site for about two weeks. To review it, visit http://www.carson-city.nv.us/. Direct comments to City Manager Linda Ritter and the supervisors. The Monday meeting is the final opportunity for the public to make comments to the supervisors.
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