Tryon’s new budget could see $500k reduction from this year

Published 10:00 pm Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Three budget work sessions scheduled over next three weeks

TRYON – The Town of Tryon has scheduled three budget work sessions at different times of the day so interested residents can attend.

Tryon Town Council met April 18 and scheduled budget work sessions for Thursday, April 27, Thursday, May 4 and Thursday, May 11.

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The work session today will be at 5 p.m., while May 4 will be at 9 a.m. and May 11 will be at 1 p.m.

Council also said the town may do another work session at 6 p.m. prior to its May 16 meeting if needed.

Town manager Zach Ollis has prepared a base budget for commissioners and the mayor to begin discussions with some departments anticipating large cuts from the current year budget.

Commissioner Crys Armbrust said he admires Ollis’ baseline budget.

“I would like to say I am incredibly impressed and gratified that in the baseline budget you have reduced the budget by almost $500,000,” Armbrust said.

Ollis said there are a lot of things that factor into that reduction. He also said when council does work sessions he will have copies of the budget so the audience can follow along, which will be color coded so it’s simple for people to follow.

The town’s total revenues for the current, fiscal year 2016-2017 budget are $4,474,748, compared to the base budget for next year’s 2017-2018 of $3,974,063.

While the baseline administration budget is expected to increase slightly, from this year’s $511,760 to next year’s $599,118, other departments are expected to see decreases, according to Ollis’ baseline budget.

The police department’s budget was $744,849 for the current fiscal year and Ollis has it at $660,354 for his baseline budget.

Ollis also has the street department budget almost cut in half, from $592,337 this year to $264,561 for next year, according to his baseline budget.

Powell Bill funding for streets is expected to increase from $46,262 to $65,000, according to the baseline budget.

The town’s fire department budget, according to Ollis’ original budget, is expected to go from $480,983 this year to $311,332 next year.

The Harmon Field budget is also expected to take slight cuts from $201,479 this year to $185,732 next year as well as the water department, from $1,718,014 this year to $1,617,814 next year.

The town’s sanitation fund could also see some cuts from this year’s budget of $252,0176 to next year’s baseline budget of $216,000.

Ollis said he wants to see the budget prepared by the next meeting, scheduled for May 16.

The town will have a public hearing prior to adopting the new budget, which has to be done by June 30. The new budget year will begin July 1.