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Mason City budget to be amended; will grow by $1.8 million

City Hall in Mason City
City Hall in Mason City

MASON CITY – An amended city budget will be considered by the Mason City Council and it has grown by nearly $1.8 million.

A public hearing on the matter will be held on May 21st, 2013, at the Mason City Public Library.

The approved city budget will be amended by changing estimates of revenue and expenditure appropriations in some functions of city government. A city document said that additional detail is available at the city clerk’s office showing revenues and expenditures by fund type and by activity. See the document here.

Areas that may see increases or decreases in revenue estimates, appropriations, or available cash: Police services, youth task force, transit, human rights services, parks improvements, airport projects, ambulance services, debt service, administrative costs, and street projects.  The total Mason CIty budget will grow from $59,984,387 to $61,783,192, an increase of $1,798,805.

To date, no city council member nor Mayor Eric Bookmeyer has mentioned the amended budget nor why it needs to be changed.

Finance Director Kevin Jacobson said that “There are several areas of increases (in the amended budget). There will be no increase in tax levies to be paid in the current fiscal year named above. Any increase in expenditures set out above will be met from the increased non-property tax revenues and cash balances not budgeted or considered in this current budget. This will provide for a balanced budget.”

The council this past winter completed a contentious budgeting process.  The state rollback tax was higher than anticipated this year, causing a possible tax hike that the city council worked to offset mainly by diminishing the Human Rights Department and by spending city employee retirement funds.  The city is still paying around $290,000 per year on debt from the Northbridge project, a major burden.  The council spent freely on sculptures, a remodel of City Hall, Micro Enterprise, Blue Zones and other projects.


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