Proposed 2014 Kansas City budget requires “further belt tightening”

2014 proposed Kansas City budgetThe city manager has submitted $916,065,337 2014 Kansas City budget proposal to the mayor. That’s a 1.8 percent decrease from the current budget, with a proposed reduction in capital improvement expenditures and reduced wages from the reduction of positions at city hall.

” Over the past couple of years the council, the manager and I have worked diligently to put policies in place to ensure the City’s long-term fiscal health is sound and to produce a five-year financial plan.  Because of those efforts the city is in better shape, but we will need to make some tough decisions this year.  Moving forward, I encourage our residents to give us feedback understanding that, much like their own budgets, funding is scarcer than our needs and wants,” the mayor said in a news release.

“The 2014-15 budget will require further belt-tightening in all City operations, but basic services will be maintained and the City will comprehensively fund its current pension obligations while saving hundreds of millions of dollars over the next 30 years in long-term financial obligations,” City Manager Troy Schulte said.

The City’s Finance and Audit Committee will hold a series of three public budget hearings next month. City Council members and staff will present information and listen to public input on the proposal.

Some of the highlights Schulte emphasized in his budget letter include:

  • Government activities decrease 1.8 percent from the current year’s budget.The general fund portion is virtually identical to the current adopted budget.
  • Revenues for governmental activities are projected to decrease 1.1 percent primarily due to a reduction in grants and fine revenue.
  • Wages and benefits account for 48 percent of expenditures and are projected to increase 2.7 percent.
  • Capital expenditures decrease $20.3 million in the budget.
  • Debt services expenditures represent 15.9 percent of the budget.
  • The police department is the city’s largest department, comprising 46 percent of the general fund.
  • The submitted budget for the fire department anticipates an increase in overtime of $5.9 million and elimination of 30 formerly grant-funded positions.
  • The budge includes $13 million for street preservation and resurfacing plus $33 million in all other street maintenance activities.
  • The budget includes $1.7 million for demolitions, neighborhood initiatives, and nuisance abatement.
  • The budget includes nearly $750,000 for youth programming.
  • The budget allocates $675,000 to public arts funding.
  • A 10 percent increase in water revenue and a 15 percent increase in wastewater revenue will address aging infrastructure, and improve reliability and service delivery.
  • Water rates have supported an increase of $54.7 million in annual maintenance and repair.


2014-2015 Public Budget Hearings

  • Saturday, Feb. 15, 10 a.m. to noon, KCPD Shoal Creek Police Academy (auditorium), 6885 N.E. Pleasant Valley Road, Kansas City, MO 64119
  • Saturday, Feb. 22, 10 a.m. to noon, Robert J. Mohart Multi-Purpose Center (auditorium), 3200 Wayne Ave., Kansas City, MO 64109
  • Saturday, March 1, 10 a.m. to noon, KCPD South Patrol Division (use main entrance), 9701 Marion Park Drive, Kansas City, MO 64137

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