Wilmington City Council Begins Its Review of the Administration's Proposed Fiscal Year 2014 City Budget

Posted on  04/08/2013 4:42 pm

Wilmington City Council will open a series of seven public meetings beginning on Wednesday to review the Williams Administration’s proposed Fiscal Year 2014 General Operating Budget and the Administration’s proposed FY 2014 Water/Sewer Fund Budget.

Council President Theo Gregory urges citizens to participate in this process by attending the public review sessions or to watch the proceedings live or on replay on the City’s government television station—WITN Channel 22 on the Comcast Network, or on the WITN website at WITN22.org. Citizens who attend the public sessions will have an opportunity to address the Finance Committee following the completion of each budget review session.

“While we recognize that the budget reflects the Mayor’s vision, the final budget must also reflect the values of our council members through their representation of the people they serve in their districts and citywide,” said Council President Gregory. “City Council will be thorough, fair and objective in reviewing the proposals given to us by the Administration. It is our responsibility to ensure that the Administration has balanced the operating and water/sewer budgets properly and that the levels of government services provided to citizens are appropriate. We are ready to carry out the legislative checks and balances process and we encourage citizens to learn about the budget and question, as we will, whether the budget proposals are fiscally responsible.”

The budget hearings will be conducted by the Council’s Finance Committee, chaired by Charles “Bud” Freel, which also includes Council Members Michael A. Brown, Sr., Samuel Prado, Hanifa Shabazz and Loretta Walsh. It is customary that all City Council Members participate in the meetings of the committee. All budget hearings at held in the Council Chamber on the first floor of the Louis L. Redding City/County Building at 800 North French Street in Wilmington.

The Finance Committee Budget Hearing schedule is:

  • Wednesday, April 10, beginning at 4 p.m., Treasurer’s Office, followed by the Auditor’s Office and the Departments of Law and Planning;
  • Monday, April 15, beginning at 4 p.m., Human Resources Department, followed by the Public Works Department;
  • Wednesday, April 17, beginning at 4 p.m., the Office of Economic Development followed by the Parks and Recreation Department;
  • Monday, April 22, beginning at 4 p.m., the Office of Integrated Technologies, followed by the Licenses and Inspections Department and the Real Estate and Housing Department;
  • Wednesday, April 24, beginning at 4 p.m., the Police Department followed by the Fire Department;
  • Monday, April 29, beginning at 4 p.m., City revenue projections will be reviewed followed by a review of the Finance Department budget;
  • Wednesday, May 1, beginning at 5 p.m., the Finance Committee will receive a presentation concerning the Water/Sewer Fund by the Public Works Department.

Mayor Dennis Williams has proposed a FY 2014 Mayor’s Operating Budget that totals $146,926,834—an increase of $3,998,811, or 2.8% over the FY 2013 Budget. The Administration has proposed using $500,000 from the City’s Economic Development Strategic Fund and $250,000 from the City’s and Housing Opportunity Fund to balance the budget for next fiscal year.

The Administration has also proposed a $66,924,498 Water/Sewer Fund budget for FY 2014 which includes a 12% increase in water/ sewer rates and an 11% increase in stormwater rates for a combined 11.9% increase. The Water/Sewer Fund proposal is an increase of $2,588,654, or 4% over the FY 2013 budget.