City considers increase in wages for 2013The city of Jamestown is considering a 3.4 percent increase in wages and benefits next year, according to a preliminary city budget report presented at Wednesday’s Jamestown City Council meeting.
The city of Jamestown is considering a 3.4 percent increase in wages and benefits next year, according to a preliminary city budget report presented at Wednesday’s Jamestown City Council meeting.
The 2013 projection of $7 million in total wages and benefits for all city employees is up about $232,000 from the 2012 budget — which was $6.77 million.
According to City Administrator Jeff Fuchs, that increase represents a 2.5 percent cost-of-living adjustment in addition to 2.5 percent annual step increases for all city employees.
Three of five council members reviewed Fuchs’ report. Councilman Ramone Gumke was absent and Councilman Dan Buchanan left the meeting three hours early due to a prior commitment.
The city’s general fund budget expenditures are expected to increase more than 10 percent in 2013.
The 2013 projection of $6.88 million in general fund expenditures is up about $650,000 from the 2012 total, which is estimated at $6.23 million. That total does not include enterprise expenditures such as water, sewer and solid waste.
Fuchs said about 60 percent of that increase comes from additional requests in the street budget related to projects to be completed next year.
City revenues in the general fund are projected to increase as well, up 13.1 percent from 2012. General fund revenues in 2013 are projected at $6.84 million, representing a $792,000 jump from 2012’s revenue estimates of $6.05 million.
Jamestown is doing relatively well financially, according to Mayor Katie Andersen.
“We’re in a good position financially,” she said. “We just have to make sure to stay as fiscally conservative as we can as we go through these budgets.”
The 2013 preliminary budget also includes three additional employee requests, including one each for the street, sewer and solid waste departments.
The council only heard from a few of the departments during Wednesday’s meeting regarding each of their proposed budgets, including fire, police and the Civic Center.
The council’s next meeting is scheduled for 3 p.m. on Aug. 27 at City Hall to hear from the remaining departments as well as vote on all budget requests.
“Today was a start, but we’ve still got a lot of work to do,” Andersen said.
Sun reporter Brian Willhide can be reached at 701-952-8454 or by email at email@example.com