Thursday June 25, 2009
For Immediate Release:
Louisville Metro Council
Contact: Tony Hyatt 574-4137/526-3622
Stephen Haag 574-1204/645-1752
On Thursday, the Louisville Metro Council has approved the FY 2009-2010 Operating and Capital Budgets for the Metro Government. The Operating Budget was approved 22 to 1 with one abstention. The Capital Budget was passed 23 to 1.
“Without question, this has been the most challenging budget in the short history of this merged government,” said Councilman Jim King (D-10) who chairs the Council Budget Committee. “There has been an unprecedented bi-partisan effort in providing for the needs and safety of our citizens and the Mayor has been a full partner in this endeavor.”
“The changes made by this Council focus on restoring essential services while also setting aside more than $8 million in unappropriated funds to protect this community from any further revenue shortfalls” said Councilman Kelly Downard (R-16) Vice chair of the Budget Committee. “The inclusion of funding for the 3rd party anonymous tip line and for professional evaluations of government services costs will help lead to a more open and efficient government.”
The Council has recommended funding changes that will allow Neighborhood Place to keep its eight directors. It has also restored funding to community ministries and other social service agencies such as Project Warm, the Healing Place, Dismas Charities and others.
The recommended changes will be funded through a reorganization of $ 3 million in bond funding. There are also recommendations for receiving a $2 million dividend to the city from the Louisville Water Company. Other organizations, including the Downtown Development Corporation will be asked to return funds.
“One of my goals as the President of the Metro Council has been to improve the level of communication and cooperation between the executive and legislative branches of our government. This year’s budget process demonstrated what can be accomplished when leaders come together in a bi-partisan fashion to address our community’s pressing issues. I want to commend the members of the Budget Committee, along with the other members of the council, for the very difficult work we undertook this year,” said President David Tandy (D-4). “The Metro Council has given the Mayor a responsible budget that does not spend more than the revenue forecasts are projecting.”
The Budget also returns funding for ongoing projects that include Glacier Run at the Louisville Zoo and funding the continuation of the West Market Street Corridor Study and continued funding to improve safety and air quality through intersection modification in heavily used parts of Metro Louisville.
“The Council appreciates the Mayor’s willingness to listen and the cooperation we have experienced in this process,” said King. “Credit should also go to the people who have shown their support for the social service agencies that are helping the less fortunate during this tough economic time.”
The Metro Council began its review of the budget at the beginning of June. After three weeks of hearings, the recommendations were made at Tuesday’s Budget Committee meeting and then approved by the full Council.
“The Metro Council conducted a thorough review of the Metro Budget, prioritized departments and services for the first time and came together to support a final product that will protect essential services and those we serve.”, said Downard. “Metro government will be more efficient as the result of our hearings and primed for better economic days”
The Budget will go into effect on July 1st.
Jim King (D) 10
Kelly Downard (D) 16