City Council passes $32 million budget; no decision on raises

  • Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Georgetown City Council passed its $32 million, no-tax-increase 2012-13 budget Thursday night.
One thing stricken from the budget was a new pickup truck for the City Fire Department which was going to be used for transporting the department’s fire boat.
“There are plenty of things they have they can use to pull that boat,” said Councilman Clarence Smalls, who made the motion for the deletion.
His motion passed 6-1 with Mayor Jack Scoville wanting to make the purchase.
The budget also includes money for raises for all city employees.
The original plan was to give each worker a three percent pay hike.
Councilman Paige Sawyer said giving every worker the same across the board pay hike “smells of socialism.”
“God forbid we should be socialistic,” Scoville responded.
Interim Administrator Carey Smith said he will take the pool of money that has been allocated and will come back to council with recommendations on how the pay raises should be made.
 The budget also includes $80,000 for the Georgetown Business Association for marketing the city for the next year.
The money will be used for the GBA — along with CASE Solutions — to continue the “It’s a Bridge, Get Over It” ad campaign that has been on TV commercials, print ads and on various websites for the past few months.
The GBA requested $200,000, which is 0.65-percent of the budget, according to President Al Joseph.
However, the money is coming from the city’s Hospitality funds, an account that contains only about $160,000, city leaders said.
This year, the GBA has been using $50,000 that was allocated last year by council for the campaign.
The motion passed 4-3 with Council members Peggy Wayne, Brendon Barber and Jeanette Ard voting “no.”
Wayne said she voted no “because I want to make sure we have the money in there to give them.”
Barber said he wanted to give Smith a chance to look at the available funds.
Councilman Brendon Barber also recommended Smith draw up some guidelines for the GBA to use when spending the funds.

By Scott Harper

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