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Newport reworks budget, proposes 2.62 levy increase

The city of Newport is re-evaluating its 2014 budget ahead of final approval next month to include more repayment for street projects.

City Administrator Deb Hill detailed the minor budgetary changes earlier this month during a council workshop. She said while a projected 2.62 percent increase in the city’s levy will go toward debt service, it will not add spending to the projected $2.4 million general fund budget.

“We need to pay for (the new streets) otherwise we’d have to trim $60,000 off the general fund budget,” Hill explained.

According to the latest figures, total general fund expenditures are expected to decrease by $18,658 and the total budgeted income will increase by $26,000.

Another change in the budget comes from a slight increase to the public safety department’s budget. The $31,000 increase is reflected from a Toward Zero Deaths grant Police Chief Kurt Montgomery said the department recently received.

There is also a $7,500 reduction in general government spending, a change attributed to a reduction in the engineering department’s budget.

“Bottom line,” Hill said, “it’s still the same.”

The City Council is expected to discuss the budget one more time prior to Dec. 5 when the council is expected to approve the 2014 budget.