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DeKalb finance committee to talk budget Thursday evening

September 26, 2018

DeKALB – The city’s Finance Advisory Committee will go over the proposed fiscal year 2019 budget Thursday night and make its recommendation to the city council.

When the committee met in May, months before the council met Monday to go over proposed cuts and tax increases, it recommended the budget be geared to put 30 percent of annual expenditures in the general fund reserves, less property tax revenues.

Interim City Manager Molly Talkington, who was hired as finance director about a year ago and named to the interim role months back, said that would put the fund balance more or less at its current level, which is just shy of 24 percent.

“The goal isn’t to lower the fund balance they have now,” Talkington said.

Talkington said such a finance advisory committee is optional for municipalities such as DeKalb, and many don’t have one. She said the committee’s recommendation will go to the council, which will likely won’t address the budget until, at the earliest, its Oct. 22 meeting.

Muck like a planning and zoning commission making a recommendation to a council, the DeKalb City Council can either side with the finance committee’s recommendation or go against it.

The proposed budget includes the reduction of 10 city employees, including a police commander and $250,000 from the fire department’s budget, including the deputy chief of operations.

Public comment will be accepted before the finance committee digs into three key topics: the property tax levy, the budget balancing act, and discussions on the five-year financial plan.

The committee will meet at 5 p.m. in the training room on the second floor of the DeKalb Police Department, 700 W. Lincoln Highway.

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