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2014 city budget shows impact of tax hike

Paris Mayor Daniel Rogers has put together a draft city budget for 2014 that projects revenues at $7.063 million and expenses at $7,039 million for a surplus of $23,596.

The draft document also reflects the impact on city finances expected to come from a one-cent sales tax increase passed by voters earlier this year. Revenue from the tax is expected to generate $500,000 annually. Revenue from the tax is restricted to the city’s water and sewer systems and, according to the 2014 draft budget, the water and sewer fund will get $324,000 and the sanitation department will get $176,000 from the tax.

Rogers and members of the City Council’s Budget Committee began work on the document last week.

“We’ll probably have another committee meeting before the Nov. 4 City Council meeting,” Rogers said. “I plan to have the council take action on the budget at the December meeting.”

The draft calls for spending $250,000 next year on improvements to water and sewer lines in the city.

“I don’t know when you’ve ever seen that,” Rogers said. “The City Council wants to decide what projects will be done before the budget is passed.”

The city also plans to do some water plant improvements next year, Rogers said.

“We’re planning on doing $165,000 in water plant improvements,” Rogers said. “Our engineer is working on the plans and we should be able to start construction in the spring.”

The budget also calls for spending $50,000 for work on the park located across Wood Street from Paris High School.

“I’d like to spend as much as we can on parks next year,” Rogers said. “Lighting around the walking track at the park is something we need to do.

The budget also includes spending $139,000 on street and drainage projects next year.

The city is spending $121,000 on those projects this year. Street and drainage work is another area impacted by the passage of a sales tax.

“The money available next year will be higher because of the state wide half-cent sales tax passed earlier this year,” Rogers said. “Income will go up by $65,000 a year because of the passage of that tax.”

The 2014 draft budget also calls for spending $10,000 on improvements to the city’s animal shelter and purchase of a police car for the Paris Police Department

The draft also includes a pay raise of 50-cents per hour for all city employees making less than $10 an hour, Rogers said.

“Raises, if any, will have to be decided by the City Council,” Rogers said.

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