Augusta, Ga (WJBF)After weeks of debate and discussions city leaders approve balanced budget for 2021 but some city leaders say this is likely not the end of the budget work only the beginning.
City leaders say it has it’s good points.
The 2021 budget is balanced, there’s no tax increase, and it’s been approved by commissioners.
“That will allow us to continue to meet the needs of over 203 thousand residents I’m pleased with that,” said Mayor Hardie Davis.
Though commissioners approved a budget that is requiring the city to raid its reserves by two and a half million dollars, and not everyone is pleased with what’s been okayed.
“I have got some issues we’ve been talking about this they’ve been pulling punches and playing games and playing politics with this budget,” said Commissioner Marion Williams.
Even with COVID the budget does not include any spending cuts even though the departments directors presented a list of one point two million dollars in reductions.
“This budget was passed I believed to get it in under the deadline but with the understanding there will be adjustments that are needed, we need to scale back on some of our expenditures,” said Commissioner John Clarke.
But the mayor isn’t in favor of the plan to make budget cuts
“That when you talk about austerity cuts it slows economic growth and it does nothing to trim the debt,” said the Mayor.
Mayor Davis is concerned about the use of reserves in this budget and he says over the next couple of years he plans to work with the new city administrator to make sure the city has 90 days of operating cash on hand in Augusta George Eskola WJBF NewsChannel six.