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Franklin approves temporary 2017 budget

Franklin is planning to keep 2017 spending close to what it did in 2016, but it will spend more on police and courts.

City Council recently approved its 2017 temporary appropriations budget through March 31 and expects to spend about $700,000 more than it projected in its 2016 temporary budget. However, that total for all funds and the general fund increased when council adopted its permanent 2016 budget.

Franklin — and a number of other area communities — traditionally approves a temporary budget until an amended official certificate of estimated resources based on actual balances is received from the county budget commission. The process, which is authorized under Ohio law, enables a community to have a more accurate budget after it closes out the previous year.

State law requires the community to approve a permanent budget by March 31.

According to its 2016 final budget, the city operated an overall budget of nearly $24.11 million that also included a general fund budget of more than $10.7 million. Last year, the city’s temporary budget projected just under $24 million in all funds that included about $9.35 million in general fund spending.

In its 2017 temporary budget, city officials are projecting a total budget of $24.69 million in all funds that includes about $9.2 million in general fund spending.

The 2017 budget also outlines capital purchases and improvements for the coming year as well as pay increases for personnel.

Of the $9.19 million general fund budget, police services is about $3.77 million or 41 percent of the budget that includes an 8 percent increase.

Funding for the Municipal Court and Probation will see a 16 percent increase in spending from the general fund to nearly $1.22 million as the probation department has grown due to the drug probation docket and the first full-year of its operations. That spending represents about about 13 percent of the general fund budget.

Transfers from other funds into the general fund represent $2.28 million or 25 percent of the general fund budget. All other general fund operation spending will be about $1.92 million or 21 percent of the general fund budget.

Pay increases are in the budget for 2017 — 3 percent to each of the three police unions; 3 percent for the public works and secretarial unions; and 2.5 percent for the Fire/EMS union. All of the pay increases are required by contract.

Among the planned spending for 2017 are the purchase of three newly equipped police cruisers; a new dump truck; replacing an ambulance; air conditioning for the upper level of the police station; remodelling of the fire station; $200,000 for the summer paving program; $48,000 for a mini excavator; and city matches for three Issue 2 projects are funded in the budget. Through the court’s special projects fund about $60,000 will be used for an improved sound system and scanners for the courtroom.

The Issue 2 projects include the $1.07 million Riley Boulevard repaving project with a city match of $343,715; the improvements to Stadia Drive that is expected to cost $101,215 with a city match of $52,000; and the Hemlock Street improvements that is expected to cost $232,500 with a city match of $116,000.

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