City officials concerned about declining reserve funds

Jonesboro Municipal Center (Source: KAIT-TV)
Jonesboro Municipal Center (Source: KAIT-TV)((Source: KAIT-TV))
Updated: Nov. 27, 2018 at 9:35 PM CST
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JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - The hot topic on city officials' minds right now is money.

More specifically, how they're going to spend it and new ways to make it.

Officials presented Jonesboro’s 2019 proposed budget in Tuesday night’s Finance and Administration Council Committee meeting.

Some projections have officials and the public concerned about the city's reserve fund and the proposed budget that dips in to that fund for over $6 million.

By law, the city has to have a balanced budget, and it's not unheard of for city's to use some of that reserve fund to balance it.

However, the concern is the projection of running out of excess reserves in the next three years.

Jonesboro cut its expenses by nearly $13 million from 2018 to 2019.

But those expenses still outweigh the city's incoming revenue.

“Because I see the trend trajectory of it going down, there’s a point in time when you’ve got to start doing something,” Mayor Harold Perrin said. “That’s why this budget is about half what it was last year, but we never want to give up the deal of giving good service to you and I, the citizens of Jonesboro.”

Which is why officials are looking at options to increase city revenue.

Those include marketing the newly renovated parks to host more tournaments, recruiting new businesses, and supporting an internet sales tax bill that was filed.

Perrin said after serving as mayor through an ice storm and several tornadoes, he knows how important those reserve funds can be.

The proposed budget was passed through the finance committee meeting, and was tabled by the city council during their meeting on Dec. 4 until it can be discussed further at the next finance meeting.

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