A year and a half ago Covington City Manager Larry Klein projected a $20 million deficit over five years. Now with what he calls "painful" cuts out of the way, including new labor contracts with higher health care premiums, a reorganization of city departments and a consolidation of emergency dispatch services, Covington is on track to save 20 million over five years. He will detail his new budget Tuesday morning for businesses at a meeting spearheaded by the Covington Business Council.
Cincinnati Mayor Mark Mallory is rescinding raises he gave to several of his staff this week.
In a statement Mallory says:
“I am rescinding the raises that I gave my staff and returning all salaries to the previous levels. Although the changes that I made in my office structure resulted in a saving of $66,000 to be used in next year’s budget, I realize that the perception has had a negative effect on the morale of other City Employees."
Hamilton County Commissioners are meeting with department heads as they work out next year's budget. With most agency leaders begging not to have their budgets slashed and Commissioners facing steep cuts, the meetings don't last long.
Board president Greg Hartmann calls the process challenging.
“We’re in the neighborhood of being $100 million dollars smaller than we were six years ago, from $300 million to $200 million,” he says.
Hamilton County Commissioners are navigating the budget process for next year. No decisions have been made but they're already responding to comments from outgoing Sheriff Simon Leis that they plan to gut his department.
Leis threatens proposed cuts would mean laying off employees and reducing space at the overcrowded county jail.
Commissioner Chris Monzel says public safety is a top priority.