Afton budget set despite criticismAfton has its 2009 budget — but only just.
By: Amber Kispert-Smith, Woodbury Bulletin
Afton has its 2009 budget — but only just.
At a special meeting on Sept. 2, attended by four of the city council members, the preliminary budget squeaked through by one vote.
The 3-1 vote (council member Peg Nolz did not attend the meeting) found its one opponent in Nick Mucciacciaro, who said he could not vote in favor of the proposed figures.
“I’m going to vote no,” he warned before the resolution to approve the budget was passed.
“This is a flawed budget. You aren’t cutting enough expenses out to account for the shortfalls, and I can’t vote for this budget…
“It’s not going for good, solid action for the people of Afton; you are putting it in other people’s pockets who go and spend their money in other towns.”
Afton’s preliminary 2009 budget totals $1,638,930, with a total property tax levy of $1,457,069.
Now the preliminary budget has been adopted, the city council may only reduce the sum between now and the meeting on Dec. 16 at which the final budget will be approved.
The city’s truth in taxation hearing, at which residents may speak to give their opinion on the budget and levy, has been scheduled for Dec. 8.
A discussion introduced by Mayor Julia Welter on the subject of bonding or a short-term loan to pay for road reconstruction around Afton, including Afton Hills in 2009 and other potential areas in years to come, was abandoned after it became clear that council members were not in favor of incurring additional debt for the city at this time.
Initial figures prepared by the interim city administrator Jim Norman at the request of Welter indicated that a $500,000 loan repaid over 10 years could cost the city $70,442 annually.
Council member Joe Richter said he was in favor of any road reconstruction being performed under a pay-as-you-go approach by the city.