Cities holding line on taxes, expenses
Wednesday, August 21, 2013 1:00 PM
Madison, Canton and Flora are all holding steady on their proposed 2014 budgets and don't plan to raise taxes or make significant cuts.
The projected total budget revenue for Madison the city in 2013 was $28,642,216 and increases to $33,239,145 this year.
Madison's millage rate is 28.8 mills.
"We're wrapping up the budget," Madison Mayor Mary Hawkins Butler said. "We'll finish it this week and we'll present it to the board."
She said the proposed budget is a "standard" Madison budget, offering the same services with no increase in millage.
"Employees will be getting raises as usual," Hawkins Butler added. "We're holding the standards that we've always set."
She added that the city was looking at funding for road overlay projects.
Flora Mayor Les Childress said the budget will mirror last year's, with no significant changes. The millage rate will remain the same.
"Along with the tight budget, we still have plans to make some improvements," he said. "We'll keep our budget in line and follow it. Try not to spend more than we take in."
Flora's millage rate is set at 30.5 mills and their budget totals near $1 million. The projected budget revenue in 2013 was $809,691 and is increased to $826,905 for next year.
Canton has a proposed budget of $18.2 million and there are no proposals to raise city's millage rate from 56.32, the highest in the county.
According to Canton CFO David Overby, the city is being conservative when it comes to projected revenue, but they are factoring in a two percent increase in sales tax.
"There are no raises, no layoffs," he said. "This is just a projected budget."
Overby said there are no significant cuts in departments except for the line item for legal fees. Last year, the city budgeted $205,000. An in-house lawyer was hired earlier this summer for $85,000.
Public hearings in all three cities have been scheduled for Sept. 3.
Ridgeland officials said earlier in the month they plan to issue cost-of-living raises and performance raises to municipal employees in a $22 million 2014 budget.
The city is making cuts in two departments and will dip into reserves again, said Mayor Gene F. McGee.