New City Budget Approved
Following seven weeks of review, the Tulsa City Council approved the City of Tulsa’s Fiscal Year 2015 budget today. Mayor Dewey Bartlett initially proposed the FY15 budget to the Tulsa City Council on May 1. The budget year begins on July 1st.
Tulsa Councilors approved the Mayor’s budget with several changes, including the commitment of another year of funding for arts programs, transit, school crossing guards and the Redfork and Kendall Whittier Main Street programs.
The additional expenses are offset by Council amendments of $648,019 to account for an increase in court fees, alarm fees, a donation from Transit Matters and additional revenue from a two week extension of children’s summer camp programs held at Henthorne Performing Arts Center.
As a result of the amendments, the FY 15 budget includes:
- Crossing guard program of 56 part-time positions and one full-time administrator
- MTTA Route 118
- Maintain MTTA hours for fixed route and Lift program
- Tulsa Parks Henthorne Performing Arts Center will remain partially open for youth and adult theater programs to continue operations in FY15
- Six (three full-time and three part-time) Tulsa Performing Arts Center employees will remain on the City payroll
- Restore Main Street programs by $80,000 (Received $120,000 in FY14)
The Tulsa City Council stated that although main street and arts-related programs were funded in FY15, future options, including private/public partnerships, will be discussed in the upcoming year. During FY15, the Tulsa City Council will review revenue estimates quarterly to consider allocating funding for specific city priorities.
Under the final FY15 budget, the following items will take effect:
- No police or fire academies scheduled
- Reduction of mowing cycles to six (10 mowing cycles in FY14)
- Effective Sept. 1, 2014 – The EMSA rate will change to $5.45, which covers first response emergency medical services provided by both EMSA and the Tulsa Fire Department
- Effective Oct. 1, 2014 – The water rate will increase by 7 percent, the sewer rate will increase by 9.75 percent and the stormwater rate will increase by 9 percent. This will reflect an estimated $4.97 increase per month for the average water and sewer customer (Water, sewer and stormwater rates were already approved by Council prior to budget approval)
The proposed Fiscal Year 2015 Budget can be viewed here.