Fairbury Budget To Remain ‘Pretty Much Flat’

FAIRBURY – The City of Fairbury’s budget for 2018 won’t see a significant increase from the previous year.

City Administrator Collin Bielser gave the council an overview of the budget for the coming year Tuesday evening. He said he expects it to remain “pretty much flat.” According to Bielser, taxable property value in the city rose by less than one percent over the previous year. He said the largest increase to the budget will be health insurance costs.

:18     “…that’s not balancing.”

Bielser said in order to balance the budget some city funds will be relying on cash reserves. He added that those reserves are in good shape.

:23     “…for operation.”

The budget will include an increase of just under $90,000 for the police department in large part because of rising insurance costs and collective bargaining negotiations that are currently in progress.

:14     “…the budget overall.”

Bielser added that as a percentage of the general fund, Fairbury’s police budget is higher than many communities including Beatrice. The council will hold its public hearing on the budget and tax levy during the next regular meeting on Sept. 19.

Also during the meeting the council took another step toward construction of the new swimming pool. Phil Lorenzen with D.A. Davidson Financial Advisors presented the council with an ordinance that would issues the first $1.5 million worth of bonds to fund the project. The ordinance was given first reading with the intention of passing it alongside the new budget at the council’s next regular meeting.

The pool steering committee will hold its first meeting to discuss design ideas on Monday, Sept. 11 at 6 p.m.

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