Work Sessions In Spring Could Help Ste. Genevieve Aldermen Identify Places To Save In Budget

Work sessions are likely to be scheduled this spring for the Ste. Genevieve Board of Aldermen to address budget issues as well as legalized marijuana.

Near the end of last Thursday’s meeting, Ward 4 Alderman Randy Ruzicka presented the idea.

“Obviously, we have our thing on the ballot for a tax increase for the police department,” Ruzicka said. “And I think we would be remiss as a board, since we’re going to ask people for a tax increase, if we didn’t maybe start going over the budget and looking at ways to maybe improve it. And I would like to initiate some work sessions — I’d like to hear what other people have to say — to start reviewing some of these things and see if there are areas where we can help the cost. …”

“Before budget time?” Ward 3 Alderman Jimmie Jones asked.

“Before budget time,” Ruzicka said, adding that “last year … we were up against a wall” and that “effectively [there was] no time to make any changes. We’ve got time now.”

The board in recent years has conducted budget hearings in August to pass a budget in September ahead of the start of the fiscal year on October 1.

Mayor Paul Hassler agreed with Ruzicka’s proposal.

“You get to the point where everybody’s set their budget and that’s a little bit late to go over and try to nit-pick it,” Hassler said. “I think it’s a good idea.”

“I say get started on it now.” Ruzicka said.

City administrator Martin Toma said that department heads turn in their requests and that “they could do that now as well now as they could two months from now.”

Ruzicka referred to resident Micah Rousey speaking “about approaching it from a  different manner” at a recent Board of Aldermen meeting.

“I would entertain thoughts about, or I would like a discussion about maybe we need to look at it from a different perspective, instead of doing it, well, that’s the way we always do it,” Ruzicka said.

See complete story in the January 30 edition of the Herald.

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