Mayor Mike Bell released the 2012 Operating Budget for the city of Toledo during an afternoon press conference on the 22nd floor of One Government Center. The budget does not call for any tax hikes or new fees and is a balanced budget according to City Finance Director Patrick McClean. "We stand before you here today with a balanced budget that has been arrived at without any new taxes and without any mass layoffs and we are the only major city in Ohio that can say that," Mr. McClean said.
To achieve the balanced budget required the transfer of $10.85 million from the Capital Improvement Fund to the general fund. Furthermore the administration is anticipating further concessions from the unions representing the city's police officers and fire fighters. Failure to secure those concessions could lead to layoffs. "It possibly could because as I have been saying for three months there is no new money coming into the city, so what that means is if we get one thing or another that takes us out of balance it could adversely affect personnel levels," Mayor Bell said.
The 2012 budget includes an estimate of $480,000 in asset sales. Additionally the administration expects to receive $10.6 million in local government revenue, a reduction from $15.1 million in 2011. 2012 Income tax collections will generate aprroximately $154 million, an increase of 2.63% over 2011.
The administration has recommended police and fire classes of 30 recruits each to begin in December 2012. A hiring freeze is in place for non-safety personnel and many vacancies will be left unfilled. Core servcies will be maintained, but there will be a reduction of programs in the Recreation Dept.
The City of Toledo Operating Budget is available online at www.toledo.oh.gov.