Council OKs $47.6 million operating budget

The Enterprise City Council passed a $47.6 million operating budget for the Fiscal Year 2021.

“Operating budget” is the key phrase, according to City Councilman Eugene Goolsby. “We might let the public know that this is an operating budget only,” Goolsby said after the budget was approved. “It does not include any capital expenditures.”

Council President Perry Vickers agreed. “The operating budget is based on estimates and projections,” he said.

Before passing the new budget the council had conducted a six-hour budget session Sept. 23 during which city department heads each outlined their respective department’s requests.

Because those requests totaled some $2 million, the council opted to put the departmental “wish list” on hold until further into the fiscal year when actual revenues would be realized.

During the budget hearing Councilman Turner Townsend noted that the actual sales tax collections in the current fiscal year is some $1.3 million more than the FY21 budget allocated for anticipated revenue.

The council decided to split the anticipated $1.3 million excess revenue figure in half and add it to the FY21 revenue column.

The council also asked the mayor to ask the department heads to re-look at and trim their budget requests. The council made a similar request the year before and that resulted in some 4 percent decrease in the total amount initially requested.

In other business, the council voted to change the voting meeting set for Nov. 3—the day of the national election—to Monday, Nov. 2, at 6 p.m., immediately following the organizational session. The newly elected council begins their four-year term at that meeting.

In unrelated business, Sarah Goutermout, a citizen, expressed concern about the speed of the traffic near Rucker Boulevard Elementary School at Rucker Boulevard and Antler Drive.

“The crosswalk at the bottom is where the kids are crossing with no markings that there’s a crosswalk there,” Goutermout told the council. “Folks are shooting through there with no regard at all that there are children crossing.”

Goutermout suggested the installation of signage to make drivers more aware that there is a crosswalk there. Interim Enterprise Police Chief Michael Moore said he has been to the area and the crosswalk is properly marked on the roadway itself. He said police have been in the area enforcing speed limits.

The next meeting of the Enterprise City Council is Tuesday, Oct. 20, in the Enterprise City Council Chambers. A work session begins at 5 p.m. and a voting meeting is at 6 p.m. Both meetings are open to the public.

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