Jackson city leaders approve tight budget, operating with nearly $78 million less than last year

Jackson city leaders approve tight budget, operating with less than last year

JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Jackson city leaders end weeks of meetings to come up with a budget for fiscal year 2020.

The city is dealing with a decrease in operating funds.

The Jackson City council approves a $252 million dollar budget that officials say holds the line in a tough budget year, with no property tax increases.

In a 4-3 vote the council approved a $252,961,175.00 budget for fiscal year 2020.

It is about $78 million dollars less than last year’s $331 million dollar budget.

"We were able to take a city that has been in crisis in recent years, not furlough anybody, not lay anybody off, eliminate the $6 million dollar hole that was present and be able to provide the services that we need to citizens," said Jackson Mayor Chokwe A. Lumumba.

Public Works will receive a total of more than $76,779,349.00 to address streets and infrastructure.

There is a $30 million dollar loan for water/sewer repairs and $12, 963,269.00 for streets, bridges and drainage.

"We kept our budget basically flat this year," said Budget and Finance Committee Chairman Ward 2 Councilman Melvin Priester Jr. "We absorbed an increase in debt service we had to pay. We had health care costs for city employees go up by nearly a million dollars".

The mayor reported that the city is leveraging one percent sales tax funds to put $40 million dollars toward roads.

There will be no raises for police, fire or any city workers, but officials said there will be no furloughs or layoffs.

The budget also includes funding for two JPD recruit classes and the purchase of body cameras.

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