Month 2001-12 December
Meeting of 2001-12-17 Special Meeting
LAWTON CITY COUNCIL SPECIAL MEETING
DECEMBER 17, 2001 - 8:00 A.M.
WAYNE GILLEY CITY HALL COUNCIL CHAMBER
Mayor Cecil E. Powell, Also
Baker, City Manager
Vincent, City Attorney
Smith, City Clerk
LTC Anthony Puckett, Fort Sill Liaison
The meeting was called to order at 8:00 a.m. by Mayor Powell. Notice of meeting and
were posted on the City Hall notice board as required by law.
Bass, Ward One
James Hanna Ward Two
John Purcell, Ward Four
Robert Shanklin, Ward Five
Barbara Moeller, Ward Six
Stanley Haywood, Ward Seven
Michael Baxter, Ward Eight
ABSENT: Glenn Devine, Ward Three
1. Discuss goals for the City and related issues and provide
direction to staff. Exhibits: None.
Mayor Powell said the purpose of the meeting is for planning for the future for the
Sill community; the City Manager and others will be preparing the budget soon and it would be
helpful if he knew the desires and priorities of the Council. He apologized if anyone was present
thinking there would be discussion about a reported retail sales outlet that might or might not be
coming to this area, and because of the agenda, that cannot be discussed at this time. Mayor
Powell said there would be a time when residents could speak regarding that issue, but the
meeting today will be limited to the reason it was called, and the media had called and asked him
if the sales outlet would be discussed and he told them no because it was not on the agenda.
A man from the audience asked when Wal-Mart would be discussed. Mayor Powell said there
nothing on tomorrow night's agenda but it will be on the agenda at some point in time. Vincent
said if there is no challenge to the ordinance, the next time it will be on the scheduled agenda is
January 22. Vincent said the Council adopted an ordinance for sale of property, which can be
challenged by a referendum petition containing 25% of the number of signatures of registered
voters of the city that cast votes in the last city-wide general election; that has to be filed with
City Clerk's Office no later than December 27. He said his office cannot assist in drafting the
petition because they have to do the legal reviews. Vincent said the Election Board Secretary
should be contacted but he felt it would require around 2,000 signatures and it has to be filed by
December 27; if it is not challenged then the sale will take place and it is scheduled right now to
be considered by the Council on January 22.
Mayor Powell said everything had been above board and they have been very open this
as he was on TV about how they can get involved. He said the Council in his opinion was in a
lose-lose situation; if it does happen out there, those will be upset and if not, it will be the same
thing that happened two years ago when they didn't let a shopping center go into in an obliterated
part of town and then they were dumb for not wanting economic development coming in here,
didn't want those tax dollars, so it becoming a lose-lose situation is very unfortunate but again the
process will work.
Mayor Powell said he felt a maintenance fund was needed for buildings so funds did not
be shuffled between accounts to make repairs. He said he would like to see a reserve fund to take
care of unexpected matters and asked the City Manager what our reserve fund is today. Baker
said $500,000. Mayor Powell said it should be about $3 million to cover unexpected expenses.
Mayor Powell said staff see if it would be beneficial to have a roofing crew, and they cannot do
some of the jobs that are out for bid, but they could keep from turning a $500 job into a $50,000
job a few years later. He asked Council to comment and then they could prioritize the items if so
Baxter agreed a reserve fund was needed, and said at times there were reserve funds
people asked for it, which tends to make other Council members want to ask for it, but a larger
reserve fund is needed. He said soccer fields are needed, a lot of them, fast and badly; four fields
will be established at 38th and Lee. Kim Shahan, Acting Parks & Recreation Director, said the
four fields can be made into eight fields for smaller kids to play. Baxter asked how many fields
were at the Fort Sill polo field and Shahan said 16. Baxter said Lawton has half of what is
needed. Mayor Powell said a person had offered to donate some land for soccer fields. Shahan
said there is property available within the City operation that could be activated, although it is
not park land at this time.
Baker said to get more soccer fields quickly you are probably looking at capital improvements
money and if Council wants more soccer fields soon, he did not think that would be possible
through the operating budget but if Council wanted to consider reprioritizing some of the already
approved projects, if soccer fields enjoy a higher priority, staff could bring back an item to look
at other projects that might be deferred in favor of soccer fields but finances will be needed if
this is to be done quickly.
Purcell said he had been asked to look at a soccer complex and not having fields spread
and discussion was having it at 38th and Lee, but there needs to be 15 or 16 fields like they have
in other cities where tournaments can be held and all the kids can play at the same place.
Purcell said we are working on a list this morning and we heard that there was some
support for increasing rates. He said there are a few things that will cost more next year before
considering the other things to be discussed this morning; there is a $400,000 plus problem that
must be solved in the way of personnel, there are pay raises for next year that are mandatory in
the contract which must be honored; there is another new contract coming up that will have to be
negotiated before next year and that money will probably be a substantial raise because they are
behind now. The City employees will get a mid-year 3% raise and next year that will cost double
what it costs this year so there is more money we need, and of course the general employees need
a pay raise next year also. All of these extra costs will be built in so it seems the City Manager
needs some kind of guidance and maybe he should bring two budgets, one that says here is what
we want and here is what it will cost, and another budget and Council needs to step up and
provide guidance because a lot of work goes into preparing a budget and if we are not going to
go this route, do not waste everyone's time, but if we say there will be no utility rate increases
then the City Manager needs to know that this morning so he can figure out how to do a budget,
or maybe not this morning, but he needs to know before he starts the budget. He said there are a
lot of increased costs going into next year and if you say you are not going to raise rates, you
cannot get there from here. Equipment purchases have been delayed due to lack of funding and if
that keeps up the City will be where it was seven or eight years ago with everything falling apart.
There are a lot of problems and Council will need to provide guidance on whether or not a utility
increase should be considered.
Mayor Powell said if we try to decide whether or not to have a rate increase, it will
get off of
what the planning session is to be for. Purcell said the City Manager needs the guidance.
Baxter said he would not support a rate increase for the citizens of Lawton but he would
a rate increase for people outside the city limits that buy water from the City of Lawton, and that
would be his guidance for the City Manager.
Hanna said he would like to see the Council work together and push things forward instead
arguing and bringing up the past. He said it is good to have a little conversation back and forth
about agreeing and disagreeing and talking about things, but we should get out of the past and
move things forward because if not, we will never move the city forward unless we all come
together; right now we are at a standstill or stalemate, people do not want to come here because
we cannot make up our minds what we want to do so we have to work together as a Council.
Hanna said he would like someone to talk to Olive Garden about putting in a restaurant
people leave here all the time to go to Oklahoma City or Wichita Falls to eat and that is tax
dollars leaving the City of Lawton. He said they are in conjunction with Red Lobster and we can
have them both here, and then business and people might come here.
Bass said he thought Council needed to take care of the city employees, they are under
insurance program is going busted and that has to be straightened out somehow but you have to
take care of the employees so they can take care of the city. He said a meeting will be held
December 20 about making 38th Street into a four-lane highway from Rogers Lane to Cache
Road. Hanna asked if proposals are being solicited for the insurance. Vincent said proposals are
due January 8. Bass said that may not solve the problem and we need to focus on that area.
Baker said this year to balance the budget he recommended that general employees receive
increase for only half of the year; the other two major employee groups got an increase for the
entire fiscal year. He said he has submitted to the general employees that he will not make that
type of recommendation again; if fire and police get a cost of living increase for the entire year,
then the preliminary budget he submits to Council will contain funds for the general employees
also for the entire year. Baker said he did not like to do that this year, it was probably not the
right thing to do but he felt he had to do it to balance the budget. He said he was told last year to
not bring a preliminary budget that included any type of rate increase and it was very, very
difficult, and next year to balance the budget, in his opinion, revenues will have to be increased,
programs will have to be decreased, or a combination of both will have to occur. Baker said little
things can be cut, maybe a few employees and a few things out of the operating budget, but in his
opinion, the only way to have a good, responsible budget is to do one of those things and it is not
easy to cut programs because people will attend meetings as advocates for a particular program,
the library, the museum, arts, parks and recreation; it is easy to say we will eliminate the Parks &
Recreation Department, but you are not going to do that so you have to be realistic. There has not
been a rate increase for three years except for the $2.35 for the sewer which was a completely
Shanklin said he was still concerned over the water rate consultant, it has been a month
asked those questions and he wanted to know who was stymying it, who has the foot on the
throat of being able to get those questions answered and back before the Council and get the
water rate raised because he did not intend to do anything as long as you allow your staff to
ignore that water rate consultant that we paid good money for. Baker said he got the answers on
Friday and has to speak with the Finance Director to find out what our next step is, and a special
meeting may be necessary. Shanklin said he thought the Council should get to see those before
having a meeting. Baker said he would send them out today but he had not even had a chance to
read it yet. Shanklin said when they raised percentages they were only talking about cost, and not
anything about profit, so he felt there was a considerable sum being taken away from the in-town
water rate payers so he was looking forward to that.
Shanklin said the central cooridor is composed of Wards 2, 5 and a good portion of 7,
and it is
from I-44 to Sheridan Road. Sheridan and Fort Sill Boulevard are the two main entrances into
Fort Sill. It is the oldest part of Lawton and our heritage is in the central cooridor where we have
the only City-owned cemetery, a new central junior high, Elmer Thomas Park, McMahon
Auditorium, the museum, downtown, the mall, the courthouse, city hall, the library, police
station, bank institutions and our history. He said we are letting it go to pot and if we do not do
something now, it will be too late 10-15 years from now. He asked for Council support to help us
get Lawton back where it is a pretty city, but it is not right now.
Shanklin said there are tools in the codes and ordinances to force people to paint and
clean up the
exterior of their houses, and those people who live outside of this cooridor and outside of town
who could care less, we have the tools to force them to do something with their property. A
young man from Loco, Oklahoma, still has not come in for his building permit and he is ignoring
us, that is on Lake property. We have got to support the staff and the staff has got to help us
when we are looking for our arterial roads that are a disgrace, like 4th Street. Shanklin said doing
this will save property values in the central cooridor, and he considered the new central junior
high the best thing that had ever happened to the central cooridor because that is a feeder school
for Lawton High and the new school shows Fort Sill and TRADOC that we are making a
commitment to give their kids the same type of quality facility that is enjoyed on the east and the
west, and in time that will help get our property values back up if we can help clean up our area.
Shanklin said the Mayor has a task force ready to go to work after the first of the
year to work
with the Chamber and different individual businesses, and all the civic organizations, to help
clean up Lawton. He said the central cooridor has miles of street that need overlay and they have
been on the short end of the budget, and it may not be until the next CIP but it is the oldest and
most ignored section of town; there are drainage problems at Sheridan and Gore, Arlington, Lake
and Bell that need to be addressed in the next CIP and these people have waited long enough.
Shanklin said he had a problem with mowing contracts because all they have to do is
scald it, but they leave grass everywhere and in the street, do not edge up against the house and
they collect $120; you do not pay that to have your yard mowed, so Council needs to look at the
RFP before staff decides that is how it will be done, because it was too late this year before he
found out we could not make them edge it because it was not in the contract.
Shanklin said ASCOG has a program coming where they will try to clean up 2nd Street
Ferris to the mall, and he wanted to attend that meeting with the Mayor. He said we need to do
anything we can to create an atmosphere that we are successful instead of the poor boy look that
we are now giving anyone and everyone who comes into our town. Shanklin said DOC started a
program where six or seven people would go out on a daily basis but it only lasted two or three
weeks and they gave it up, but the manpower is there. He said a great number of residents in the
central cooridor are his age or older and do not have the financial or physical ability to take care
of their property as the code states, such as dead trees and limbs in alleys and that type of thing.
He said if we want to use DOC we will have to go through the Governor or some way to be able
to get some help for the citizens in cleaning up their areas. Mayor Powell said he would be
leaving at 5:30 Thursday afternoon for the ASCOG meeting if Shanklin wanted to go with him.
Hanna said he had talked to the City Manager about mowing and he hoped he was still
into having a mowing crew like they talked about, putting all the resources under one department
to handle these problems. He said we have about 15 departments doing their own mowing but not
at the same time and they do not help each other, but only do their own little section. Hanna said
the city needs to have its own mowing crew like the schools have, we can get someone hired to
take care of these things and break it down in different sections and have someone check on them
and that way the City Manager has only one department to go to as far as holding accountable,
and the City Manager was to consider it. Shanklin said we pay someone $120 to mow a yard and
it looks worse than it did before they mowed it. Hanna said he hoped this would take some of the
pressure off of Neighborhood Services.
Mayor Powell said on the edging, we send out notices then send a contractor out to mow
people wanted to put in a bid on it but they did not find out about it in time. Shanklin said he did
not want it just mowed as fast as they could and leave grass everywhere, it looks worse than it
Baker said Jackson was heading up a committee that would make recommendations to him
first of February on consolidating all mowing into one activity and once we do that, we can look
at whether it would be more cost effective for the City to mow some of these properties instead
of contracting it out. He said in some cases we found it was better to contract it out and in other
cases it was not, and the main advantage of doing it yourself is you have control of it and can
manage it, and under contract and the price situation sometimes you do not get as much as you
do in house, such as policing up, picking up the grass and edging and making it look good. Baker
said he should receive a report on it in about a month.
Haywood said we need to support the City Manager as much as possible; we need to make
the employees receive their raise every year or pay them what is comparable to other cities; we
need to support the staff and when we send them to do a study and they do it and bring it back,
we just throw it to the side and we should consider what they have said and then make a decision.
He did support the soccer fields for the kids and felt they should have them not only on 38th
Street but also on the east side, so they should probably have those in two locations. Haywood
said insurance is important and medication is very high.
Haywood said he agreed about the mowing also, they do not trim the lawns and they leave
in the streets. He said some businesses do not cut their lawns and others keep their businesses
immaculate and we should try to keep a clean city. He said 11th Street all needs to be
commercial, rather than housing and an item will be on the agenda tomorrow night in that regard.
Haywood said we need to get transportation available and it cannot be drawn out any more.
Haywood said we do need a reserve because things can come up. He said each member was
elected from a certain area but sometimes they go out of their areas and the council person needs
to be contacted if a project is in his area and talk to him about it first before bringing it to the
Moeller said she agreed with most of the comments and wanted to add more; general employees
have been overlooked, the insurance is in very bad shape and it should never have gotten this far;
we should do a little bit more prevention rather than crisis management and preact on things
rather than reacting when it is almost too late and it will always cost you more money. She
agreed about the streets in the central cooridor but said those are not the only ones in need, those
in her area are newer but some were put in before the standards were adopted that we have now,
and it is a poor excuse and should not have happened but it did. Moeller said the demolition of
old, ugly buildings should continue, as well as the method of having the owners pay rather than
having the City pay all the time.
Moeller said the in-line skating will likely not be able to take place at Fort Sill
for some time.
She said she asked for a long range plan when she came on Council as to where we want to be in
three, five and ten years, and all these areas belong on that road map; if we know where we are
going, we can decide how to get there and maybe get there cheaper if we have good direction.
Moeller said she would like research done on the cost of developing a reserve fire and
for emergency use only from among the retirees who are willing and able to come back to assist
in some manner, even if it is not full duty, without jeopardizing their retirement or whatever else
may be involved. She said some could man desks or phones and some may be able to do more
than that, but some type of reserve unit should be pursued.
Vincent said the issue on the reserve units would require a change in state law on retirement
police and fire, and they are looking into it as several other cities are concerned also.
LTC Puckett said there are three garrison goals from Fort Sill and on the surface they
seem to impact the budget or draw on resources; the first is a federal partnering of resources or
going into cooperative ventures between the Fort Sill directorates and the City of Lawton
departments that have the same function. The second is along the lines of Project Impact but it is
to come to a comprehensive agreement or plan for crisis response, or consequence management,
between the City and Fort Sill. Mayor Powell said a meeting is planned for January 17th with
General Maples and whoever he desires about the EOC for Fort Sill to hear what is happening
here and that will set things into motion and will include the post hospital. LTC Puckett said the
third point is to reinvigorate the Lawton Fort Sill Coop Program between units and Lawton area
businesses. Mayor Powell said those are very good points and all of them can be done with very
little or no money.
Mayor Powell said there is a strong possibility that the McMahon Foundation may be interested
in putting in the road in Elmer Thomas Park as per the design Council approved two months
ago. The Foundation would request the City put an irrigation system in the area of the road, trees
and shrubs, and the design of the park indicates those things happening and that should be done
in conjunction with the road, and once that happens, the City would maintain the area. They are
talking about a rather immediate thing and the conversation was the City could do a preliminary
in-house design for a projected cost, not exact, but projected cost could be taken to their board to
see if it was affordable and perhaps do it in two phases.
Mayor Powell said no one has mentioned infrastructure as a priority and we must continually
address that so we do not receive another $62 million mandate; the sewer rehab is on target but
he was more concerned about the water distribution system, and we are fortunate that it appears
the breaks have been down this year. The mobile equipment must be part of the planning as far as
the budget is concerned.
Purcell said most of the comments from the members are items which would require more
revenue and no one mentioned anything that would take less revenue. He said he, Shanklin and
Devine know what is coming up next year and Council needs to provide the City Manager some
guidance, and to tell him to come back with a balanced budget but not increase revenue was to
him irresponsible. Purcell said you either have to increase revenue, decrease service or a
combination of the two, and in an attempt to give the City Manager some guidance, he would go
out on a limb and make a motion that we give the Manager guidance to bring back a balanced
budget but not preclude him from increasing some kind of utility raise, let him decide and we can
change it but let him decide whether outside sales are going to be increased or whatever but it is
irresponsible to tell him, at this point in time with everything we've all said, to come back and no
rate increase because that means there is no more revenue next year than there is this year, how
are we going to pay for all the things we just talked about.
MOVED by Purcell, SECOND by Hanna, to give the City Manager guidance to come back with
a balanced budget but to not preclude him from having a rate increase if we need it to balance the
Mayor Powell asked Purcell to restate the motion. Purcell said the motion is to provide
Manager guidance to bring back a preliminary budget, which Council can change all it wants, but
the preliminary budget will be balanced but not preclude him from including some kind of
revenue increase and what we are talking about is the utility increase because we cannot do taxes
because that takes a vote of the people, to balance the budget as a preliminary budget.
SUBSTITUTE MOTION by Shanklin, SECOND by Baxter, to direct the City Manager to bring
the budget back as Purcell described but first bring it back with the rate increases that have been
overdue, past due, long overdue for the outside water sales people and those folks that we may
have an illegal contract with, and if that's true, we're looking at over $1.5 million right there
before we ever mention or threaten the inside city limit water users.
Shanklin said he wanted to see that first and he would not say he would vote for a rate
until we see what we will do on the outside. Purcell said that was what he thought he was saying
so he would withdraw his original motion, and the City Manager knew we were under charging
outside and over charging inside. Shanklin said the Council needed a workshop on it. Purcell
withdrew his motion and Hanna withdrew the second. Shanklin said he would withdraw his also.
Purcell said they needed one.
Mayor Powell said he was making notes during the meeting and had written down outside
sales, revenue generated, and once we get that figure, we can come nearer what we are talking
about. Shanklin said it might make it more palatible to those inside the city limits if they had to
have a slight water increase. Purcell agreed and said he would withdraw his motion; Shanklin
agreed to leave his motion in place.
Baker said unless council just wanted to give him some guidance, the preliminary budget
responsibility, the charter makes that very clear. He said he would prepare the preliminary budget
and make recommendations he felt were necessary and may give it in two forms, one with his
recommendation, it is balanced but requires x, and another form that requires no additional
revenues but includes program cuts. He said he did not want to put council on the spot to decide
today whether to increase revenues or not, and he would put the preliminary budget together and
if he thought it requires rate increases to provide the needed level of service in the community to
our citizens, that recommendation will be in there, but he would give council an option. He said
unless the council just wanted to give him guidance, he did not think he needed any, and he kind
of knew how most of them feel, they had talked and he knew some did not want to see rate
increases under any circumstances, others would be amenable but he could put the preliminary
budget together unless council just wanted to give him some guidance.
Mayor Powell asked if staff had enough information as far as outside water sales. Baker
will have to get back with council to finalize the report and answer the questions. Shanklin said
do not throw a figure out there yet. Baker said the answer is yes, that would be an option to
increase revenues, look at that report and what is recommended and maybe the possibility for
VOTE ON SUBSTITUTE MOTION: AYE: Hanna, Devine, Purcell, Shanklin, Moeller,
Haywood, Baxter, Bass. NAY: None. SUBSTITUTE MOTION CARRIED.
Moeller said she went to a course at the NLC convention on using tourism to build your
and she learned that Lawton-Fort Sill is very much undersold in the tourism area, and if we did
that right, we would have all of the income we would need. She said after World Ward II, Europe
rebuilt its economy on tourism. Moeller said she will do a break out on this and would like to
bring it back as an agenda item later for Council consideration for a way to rebuild our economy
through tourism and the two ladies who gave the course were phenomenal. Mayor Powell said
the timing is now because the State has been driving hard on this area in the last year or two and
it is the best cash crop around.
Shanklin said when he and Baker were going to Medicine Park to keep from being black
which to a certain degree, they informed them they did not need any of Lawton's money, they did
not come out there anyway or support them, they got all their support from the 1.6 million people
who go through the Wildlife Refuge every year. Moeller said we are a lot of those people who go
out there with our families. Shanklin agreed and said those at Medicine Park did not want to
Mayor Powell summarized the comments made by each person as shown above.
Mayor Powell said Purcell brought up on personnel $400,000 and he did not understand
Purcell said the $400,000 was to play catch up, since we did not do anything with the fire
department, that is what it will cost to catch up for next year with the fire department before we
get into their contract for a 4% pay raise, so we need to do that and we need to honor that, then
we have police department negotiations, and we have personnel numbers that are going up is
what he was getting at and that was why he was saying you cannot get there from here without a
Mayor Powell said we talked about the offer or discussion of an offer from McMahon
Foundation and asked if the City Manager should work on including something in the budget as
far as that road was concerned and consensus was yes. Shanklin asked if an irrigation system was
already in place by the road that is there. Mayor Powell said we are talking about the road that
would go throughout the whole park and it may cost $1.3 million.
Baxter said there are opportunities for grant funding, such as the Fire Act grant
to help with
chemical spills and equipment, and the reason he supported the reserve was so we would have
money to be able to go get these grants. He said we had to pass up a couple of grants because we
did not have funds available for match.
Purcell asked what was meant by reserve, the City Manager said there was a $500,000
and asked if that was the carryover or if there was a $500,000 reserve somewhere else. Baker
said it is the carryover and asked for guidance regarding the reserve; it is a very important issue
in developing a preliminary budget; if Council wants a higher reserve built into the budget, he
needed to know that. He said we should have $2.5 to $3 million reserve to be fiscally
responsible, we have $500,000 and there is a reason for that; in the past if you had money in an
account, then people started looking at it, but if Council wants the reserve increased in next
year's budget, he needed to know that.
Mayor Powell said this City needs to be run in a business-like manner and in order to
do that you
have to have reserves because it has already been proven time after time that you have to take
from one account to pay for something in another one and the money goes in a circle and that is
not a good business practice. He said he meant to have a true reserve that is there if we need it
Purcell said we have the Council Contingency which is somewhat of a reserve but they
get into it
for every little thing, so either that needs to go up or have a separate reserve. Mayor Powell said
whether it is called a reserve or a contingency, as much liability as there is and as many people as
work here and exposure, there must be something they can put their hands on.
Shanklin said in talking about the reserve we should keep in mind our per capita income
what we spend per capita from our general operating budget is barely half of what other cities
have. He said Stillwater spends almost $2,000 per citizen; Norman beats us considerably and it
boils down to the fact that we are not generating the revenues other cities generate. Shanklin said
the Mayor put out a paper showing that Enid did $1.7 billion in retail sales at the bottom of the
list with 60,000 people in that county and we did $2.4 billion for 114,000 people so we are twice
as big as they are so you double the $1.7, and they are outdoing us by $1 billion in that area by
those figures from the Daily Oklahoman so we will not have the same revenues and the same
reserves that these other cities have because they have more money to spend than we do. Mayor
Powell asked Shanklin if he, as a businessman, had a reserve. Shanklin said he does now but he
had seen the time when he did not, and it was probably the same with the Mayor.
Bass asked if money in a reserve could be used to apply for matching grants. Baker said
intent of the reserve was to have it available for absolute emergency situations and the local
match for grants and other things that come up through the year would probably be addressed
better by increasing the contingency. Baker said last year the contingency was $200,000, and this
year it was $100,000 so they could balance the budget, but if the intent is to have operating
money during the year for unforseen things that come up then you should put that in the
contingency. Baxter said he did not have a problem with it being in contingency, but if we have a
chance to get $500,000 by spending $50,000, he wanted to have it available.
Baker said this year's budget has a direct impact on next year's budget, and talking
carryover, this year we went way out on a limb and estimated $3.5 million but actually had $3.2
million. There will be recommendations for the duration of this fiscal year to try to cut
expenditures so we can realize some carryover to support next year's budget. He will be talking
with the Finance Director this week and be coming to Council with recommendations, but we
have to cut expenditures for the rest of this year. Baker said another thing he recommended to
balance this year's budget was to increase the anticipated lapse of personnel from $500,000 to
$750,000 and if that $750,000 does not materialize then that has a negative, direct, significant
impact on next year's budget so he will be coming back some time in January with some
recommendations to try to get by this year as conservatively as possible to start preparing for
Purcell said the lapse funding made the actual carryover higher in some years and he
budgeting to not use lapse funding. He said if you do not budget the lapse funding and it
happens, it helps with the carryover the following year, and that was just his suggestion. Baker
said he thought it was very wise not to budget the lapse funding, and when he became City
Manager he told the Finance Director that he would never balance the budget by budgeting lapse
funding and he had to do that this year, and it is much better not to if you can do it.
Shanklin asked if the City Manager was saying we really did not need those people to
we have grown 125 or 130 employees over ten years and have the same population, we have the
same number of water meters we had ten years ago but yet our budget has grown, not counting
the sewer rehab people, just the bureaucracy has grown here.
Kim Shahan, Acting Parks & Recreation Director, said the City has acquired properties
be maintained next year, such as the large acreage at 67th and Rogers Lane, grass areas on 82nd
Street, and discussion of the trees and shrubs in Elmer Thomas Park which will require a high
level of maintenance. He said staffing will need to be considered for these areas.
There was no further business to consider and the meeting adjourned at approximately
upon motion, second and roll call vote.