The Press Newspaper
Oregon City Council at a meeting on Dec. 17 passed the 2013 budget.
Included in the budget is $16,471,490 in the general fund.
City officials were pleased by the outcome.
“We had a series of budget committee hearings,” said Councilman James Seaman, who is chairman of the Finance Committee. “I think we came to this final product tonight, the budget.”
More money was requested for restrooms and sewer combinations for recreation, he said, as well as for marketing economic development.
“Basically, everyone was heard, including the department heads, in the budget hearings. We’re looking for another fruitful and productive year,” said Seaman. Administrator Mike Beazley and Mayor Mike Seferian, added Seaman, “have worked to keep costs in line.”
Seferian said he was happy with the budget.
“I think all of council had a chance to take part in it. There’s other adjustments we could make. But I think it’s a very responsible budget. It’s generous with some of the capital improvements. We may be able to do some additional capital improvements as 2013 progresses,” said Seferian.
Councilman Mike Sheehy said Beazley had promised at last year’s budget hearings to save the city a significant amount of money, especially in the court system.
“That promise came to fruition in this budget. It looks like next year’s budget will be even better. We got a good budget. He kept his promise,” said Sheehy.
Councilman Jerry Peach was also pleased to see lower costs in the municipal court.
“Court takes in quite a bit,” said Peach.
Beazley said the city spent $15.1 million in 2012, “less than what the city has spent in many, many years.”
“It helped us get through some lean times,” he said. “A budget is a plan to spend and an estimate of what you will receive. It’s current the moment you pass it and you have to be flexible enough to deal with the real world as you go. I feel good about what we prepared. We continue to deal with the permanent changes in our revenue stream from things the state has done. But as our tax revenues bounced back with the economy, this council has been very focused on keeping our operational costs under control, and preparing to postpone some of our capital needs during some very lean times. There will be an ongoing examination of capital during the year. That is the responsible approach.”
“I think it’s good that we were still able to keep some line items as we have in the past for organizations such as the community theater, and the Oregon Jerusalem Historical Society, and the Care-Van program,” said Seaman.