University Heights City Council special meeting highlights 3-26-2018
MARCH 26, 2018
- 2018 budget
- Mayor’s spending limits
Present were Mayor Michael D Brennan, Vice Mayor Susan Pardee, Pamela Cameron, Phil Ertel, John Rach, Steven Sims, Michele Weiss and Mark Wiseman. Also present were Law Director Luke McConville, Finance Director William Sheehan, and Clerk of Council Kelly Thomas. The meeting was held from 7 to 7:15 p.m.
Council had approved a temporary budget in December for just the first three months of 2018, and so needed to finalize a budget for the remainder of the year by March 31. The budget was approved as presented, but on emergency in order to go into effect immediately. Finance Director McConville summarized the following additions from 2017: added police officer and fireman, video streaming, new equipment, an economic development employee, communications equipment, an administrative assistant and raises for non-union employees. Vice Mayor Pardee reported that this budget reflects the mayor’s vision for the city, and the ideas that he campaigned on. Mayor Brennan noted that the budget represents a lot of hard work from everyone—council members, the finance committee, and department heads. Councilman Wiseman noted that council met almost weekly to work on the budget—much more often than in prior years—and this was the first time council met directly with the department heads instead of receiving general numbers from the mayor.
Mayor’s spending limits
Council voted to increase the spending limit for the mayor from $5,000 to $15,000 per purchase. This came up as an issue now because the fire chief needed to make emergency repairs to a fire truck that would cost $11,000. Councilman Wiseman noted that such an increase had been considered previously but was only now deemed reasonable because of this mayor’s transparency to council. He maintains that there is a higher level of comfort and trust now. Vice Mayor Pardee noted that the $15,000 limit was chosen because purchases above $15,000 are required [by state law]to be sent out for bid.
LWV Observer: Wendy S Deuring.
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