City Hall

After Meeting and Conferring With Police, Fire Officials, Mary Suhm to Present Budget Proposal

On Monday, Mary Suhm will present to the council the FY2010-11 budget, from which she had to trim some $131 million -- a "painful, painful, painful" process, as she put it one month ago, because it will involve laying off hundreds at City Hall and gutting the budgets in myriad other departments, chief among them Park and Rec and the Dallas Public Library System.

And, since March, Suhm has been meeting with Dallas Police Department and Dallas Fire-Rescue reps to get them to accept furlough days and do without overtime, at least for the near future, in the hopes of saving more than $22 million in the coming fiscal year. As Suhm told Unfair Park, "They're grouchy about it, but everyone else has taken a pay cut. So where else do you go?" And while the deal's not yet done -- it has yet to be formally presented to officers and firefighters, 65 percent of whom need to give it the thumbs-up -- the council this morning will be briefed on the results of four months' worth of talks.

Above is the outline. Contained within the briefing are the details -- everything from the number of ambulances that'll be purchased (five, not nine) to how officers will be paid for accrued leave announcing their retirement (over time rather than one lump sum) to the fact the city will change its Special Events Ordinance to require the hiring of only DPD and DFR officers should those holding permits need law enforcement. Suhm also details the so-called tax revenue triggers that would reinstate raises the following fiscal year:

  • Property Tax: Tax base must increase by 3.35% (equals $20,120,870 in additional revenue)
  • Sales Tax: Revenues must increase by 3.5% (equals $7,059,919 in additional revenue

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Robert Wilonsky
Contact: Robert Wilonsky

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