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Desloge approves $8 million budget

DESLOGE — The Desloge Board of Aldermen approved an $8 million budget for the upcoming fiscal year.

On Tuesday night, the board amended their fiscal year 2008-09 budget and approved the fiscal year 2009-10 budget.

Desloge City Administrator Greg Camp said the budget includes a 3 percent raise for all full-time and permanent part-time employees.

Sales tax revenue is expected to stay about the same this year. Health insurance and energy expenses are tough costs the city has to deal with, Camp said. But he said it is something all of the cities have to deal with. He said fortunately they don’t have to cut too much to accommodate the increases.

Health insurance came in at a 17 percent increase but the city was able to negotiate that down to a 5 percent increase.

The budget includes $73,000 for the hiring of two police officers if they are awarded a COPS grant. The money would be reimbursed.

The Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) Program is a federal grant that will pay for the starting salaries and benefits of newly hired police officers for the first three years of their employment.

The budget includes $3.5 million for construction of the Eastern Outer Road. The city will be reimbursed $2.7 million. There’s also money for part of the Cantwell Corridor project with some reimbursement, as well.

Other expenses include the last lease purchase payment for city hall, payments on the city trash and fire trucks. The city will purchase a new cruiser and two-replacement cameras for the police department, new sets of turnout gear for the fire department, soccer goals and new playground equipment at Cantwell park.

Last year’s budget included general fund expenditures, $2.006 million; tax increment financing, $1.54 million; capital fund, $875,000; transportation fund, 591,000; storm water fund, $357,000 and water works fund, $2.8 million.

This year’s budget includes general fund expenditures, $2.021 million; tax increment financing, $1.07 million; capital fund, $2.129 million; transportation fund, $1.775 million; storm water fund, $230,000 and water works fund, $887,000.

During executive session, the board approved hiring a part-time library assistant, Samantha Pirtle.

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