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City of MC must use $648K in reserves to balance budget

This news story was published on April 30, 2014.
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City hall is set

City hall will use $648,000 from reserves to balance the budget

MASON CITY – The city of Mason City will need to spend $648,000 out of reserves to make ends meet in this year’s budget, city hall documents show.

City Finance Director Kevin Jacobson confirmed to NIT that the city “will be spending $648,000 more than budgeted out of reserves”.

He broke down the allocation of those necessary expenditures this way:

– General $141,000 of that, $21,000 is carryover money for a project that didn’t get complete in 2013, therefore, $120,000 is new.

– RUT (Road use tax) – $32,000, this is new

– Hotel/Motel- $30,000 that is budgeted in FY 15, but will be spent early due to the Main Street needs for RAGBRAII

– Sewer-$245,000 that is carryover from a project not completed in FY 2013

– Health Claims-Expenses were greater than anticipated.

Mr. Jacobosn attributed $296,000 of the $648,000 in expenditures where due to “timing issues from prior or future budgets.”

Mayor Eric Bookmeyer and the city council this spring approved a roughly 10% tax hike on the people of Mason City in order to balance this year’s budget.  They also approved hikes in water and sanitation rates.

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29 Responses to City of MC must use $648K in reserves to balance budget

  1. Antares Reply Report comment

    May 7, 2014 at 9:57 am

    If there is that much money in surplus, the city could walk it over to the High School so they can keep their teachers.

  2. servantez55 Reply Report comment

    May 1, 2014 at 5:44 am

    Let see, the council took retirement money to balance budget, took away Human Rights Commission to balance budget, and now need to use reserves to balance budget, whats wrong with this picture? It looks like we have incompetent council and mayor in office. Oh, I forgot, no one got out to vote, and kept them in office. Sorry, my mistake, Oh, another thing, raising water rates. I sure don’t want to leave anything out.
    Just sayin.

  3. jl.herr Reply Report comment

    May 1, 2014 at 12:47 am

    Don’t worry we will have extra money once the RAG.comes to MC. that is all we hear is how great this is going to be,because of all the $ that will be flowing that 1 day.What was their figure wasn’t it 3 million.LOL! I’m starting to think they couldn’t manage a paper route.This is the way people think that have not put in blood , sweat,and tears for their own $.Easy to spend someone else money isn’t it.

  4. 4ever49 Reply Report comment

    April 30, 2014 at 10:59 pm

    Poorly written story.
    It is not clear if the “carryover” represents monies not spent in the previous year but are now being spent in the current year.
    What is the total budget for the year and what percentage is $648,000 of that total if that in fact is the real number.
    The over-run on health claims could total $221,000 depending on how the article is interpreted. If so this represents a 34+% of the $648,000. Can this be attributed to Obamacare?

    • Matt Marquardt Reply Report comment

      April 30, 2014 at 11:20 pm

      NIT reported exactly what the city of Mason City would release as an explanation as to the the raid on the reserves. What is it you expect? City hall is not exactly in the business of divulging great detail on these matters, especially when it might make them look less than stellar. The $648K is coming out of reserves. That is the story.

      • 4ever49 Reply Report comment

        May 1, 2014 at 7:58 pm

        If City hall is not exactly in the business of details why are you not drilling down on the information & asking the questions?

        If you want a credible presence in the market place that’s what you should be doing.

        • Matt Marquardt Reply Report comment

          May 1, 2014 at 9:11 pm

          Has this raid on the reserves even been reported in the other local “news” outlets? No. I have already out-worked them. I think you should be asking the man who spends half his day at city hall who works at the newspaper why he hasn’t reported this situation. He will now have to report this and try to cover for his mealticket. As I believe you are aware, I cannot force city hall to tell anyone anything. All I can do is ask, and ask. As for your advice, keep it to yourself, not interested.

          • Cool

            May 3, 2014 at 4:38 pm

            So using this logic Matt, I can write articles with limited facts and information just because I know that the Globe is not going to. So as long as you run faster than the fat kid with Asthma in a race and beat him, should be fine?

            Thought you were better than that.

          • Matt Marquardt

            May 3, 2014 at 6:03 pm

            I published the exact information supplied to me by the city of Mason City.

          • LVS

            May 3, 2014 at 6:38 pm

            @Matt-they never stop trying to discredit you do they. They are going after the wrong news source. The GLOB is the one who only reports what it wants to and hides the truth from the public. You have a lot more patience than I do Matt.

  5. Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 30, 2014 at 8:41 pm

    The carryover money shouldn’t be included in the total. It wouldn’t be in the reserve if the projects had been completed the previous year. That being said, the number is alarmingly high.

  6. Blisterpak Reply Report comment

    April 30, 2014 at 7:55 pm

    The Mayor and his ” Dream Team”– oh I mean the nightmare team, is just doing what they always do!! Exactly whatever they want.. This is what we elected folks… As far as the comment by Anonymous about democrats spending etc. There are only 2 Dems on there Hickey and Kuhn… They are like wolves in sheeps clothing… They are really republicans.
    Things are controlled by the Republican Chamber, Cerro Gordo Rep… It is entitlement– they deserve it their way or no way..They make me sick…

  7. Sandra servantez Reply Report comment

    April 30, 2014 at 7:48 pm

    These are the people that the majority wanted at voting time. Now EVERYONE is paying for it thank you very much. I can’t even begin to tell how many times Scott said he did not want to touch the reserves.

    • Matt Marquardt Reply Report comment

      May 1, 2014 at 12:44 am

      The “majority” of the 35% who voted. 65% stayed home because they do not care one way or another what happens. 40% shows up and at least two new council members are seated, and maybe a new mayor. What is the secret to getting that 5-6-7 extra % to put down their beer cans, turn off the TV and spend 15 minutes driving to a poll, voting, and driving home?

  8. Anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 30, 2014 at 6:00 pm

    Pathetic leadership. This is in-excusable. This is what you get when you get a bunch of liberal left wing Democrats and Mayor for a city government. Ya, I know bookmeyer says he is a Republican. Fat chance. Just another lie.

    • Conehead Reply Report comment

      May 1, 2014 at 12:53 am

      Rumor has it that if you stack all the empty beer cans and vodka bottles in Eric’s garage on top of each other you will reach the planet Coors, where Eric was born. Everyone on that plant has red hair, pasty white skin and suffers from a disease called pilferitis. He met his wife there and they pro-created their offspring before they migrated to planet Earth on a rocket ship fueled by Nebraska corn ethanol.

  9. 2old2fat Reply Report comment

    April 30, 2014 at 5:57 pm


  10. Truth Teller Reply Report comment

    April 30, 2014 at 4:32 pm

    We spend more than that on a couple drug prison sentences on a daily basis, baby please. I’m not buying the “it’s about the money” crap anymore.

    This is chicken feed compared to what we spend on the war on some drugs on a daily.

  11. rukidding Reply Report comment

    April 30, 2014 at 4:10 pm

    Does anyone know when was the last time the council had to use this much of the reserves to balance the budget. Seems like there is a lot of special interest groups getting tax-payer money that is causing some of this.

    • Buzz Crumcutter Reply Report comment

      April 30, 2014 at 5:19 pm

      I’m in no way defending what this council has done, but using money from reserve funds isn’t unusual at all. The question(s) you might want to consider is/are; what’s in this years budget that has increased our expenditures over and above our expected revenues? The city’s explanation is logical, but it doesn’t sound like many people agree with the projects the council has taken on or decided to fund with tax dollars. If you don’t like it, remember that the next time you don’t go vote!!

  12. LVS Reply Report comment

    April 30, 2014 at 3:03 pm

    Blue Zone, Ragbraii,Statues, Bike Trails, Give aways to all Eric’s Buddy’s. No wonder they are over budget. Impeach the whole bunch of them and put in new people that will represent all of the people.

  13. Truth Teller Reply Report comment

    April 30, 2014 at 2:18 pm

    I’m not buying the fake outrage. I see post after post about how every pothead and petty criminal should do time in prison at $40,000 and year, this pisses you off? It’s a drop in the bucket compared to other expenses. Not buying it.

    • LVS Reply Report comment

      April 30, 2014 at 3:05 pm

      @Truth Teller- (Aka Iowa Sucks) it would be worth 40K to put you in jail if it would shut you up. You damn druggers are all alike. Big mouths and no balls.

  14. concerned Reply Report comment

    April 30, 2014 at 1:19 pm

    $50000 for a part time blue zone position.

    I wonder why the city is broke.

  15. 2old2fat Reply Report comment

    April 30, 2014 at 12:28 pm

    Bookmeyer and your babboons all need to pull your heads out of your arse. All of good people that try to make a livin should go file bankruptcy and laugh live off the welfare system like the other half does.

  16. 2old2fat Reply Report comment

    April 30, 2014 at 12:23 pm

    You stupid idiots running our city need to make better decisions! Buying all those statues were a prime example of how your mind thinks. Over half of Mason City is not employed as druggies and drunks run the city and these asshole dont pay taxes but get food stamps and some get more food stamps than a person working at 10.00 hr with kids. Thats why our city is F**KED.

  17. Allen Reply Report comment

    April 30, 2014 at 12:10 pm

    I live within a budget, and I don’t have people to tax if go over budget. Seems like somebody is trying to live beyond their means. $30,000 for RAGBRAII, not, it will cost that much in clean up.

  18. anonymous Reply Report comment

    April 30, 2014 at 11:50 am

    This is what Eric’s supporters voted for.