On Monday, the City Council voted 4-1, with Councilman Jackie Jarrett opposing, to approve its fiscal year 2013 budget, after two months the council tabled the budget to work on possible cuts.
The balanced budget calls for $368,000 in revenues and expenditures, down considerably from fiscal year 2012 budget of $440,000.
It also factors in the city leaving its current millage rate in place.
The millage rate is 4.6 mills for residents of the city, with 1.546 mills for the city property tax and 3.129 for the county fire district tax. A homeowner with a house valued at $200,000 with the standard $5,000 exemption will pay $337 in city property taxes.
The discussion on the budget was brief, but was not without accusations.
Jarrett opposed the budget because he believes City Clerk Brandy Edwards’ budget “needs to be cut.”
Councilman Duane Cronic said the city had already cut Edwards’ salary from $48,000 to $46,000. He also said the city reduced her travel expenses.
Jarrett added he wanted to see the city make further cuts because he said it is “broke and not making it.”
“We cut $72,000 to make it not desolate anymore,” Cronic later countered.
The council also approved notifying Cherokee County of the components it wanted to include in its proposed plan to enhance its parks and recreation amenities.
The city formally approved including enhancing current nature trails, improving the gravel driveway and parking lot at Edmondson Field and renovating the children’s playground and basketball courts in its portion for the county’s parks bond program.
The city also asked the county to possibly include handicap-accessible restrooms, which the city said could possibly be paid for using sales tax proceeds.
Cherokee has set aside up to $200,000 for the city to use in the $90 million parks bond.
The council also:
* Swore in new council member Edith Portillo;
* Reviewed amending the process of responding to code violations, which lists the priorities of which complaints to respond to first;
* Approved 3-2, with council members Martha Tipton and Jarrett opposing, to appoint Portillo to the personnel committee; and
* Approved moving forward with purchasing a new police vehicle.