Thursday, May 7, 2015

Report: City may spend more in overtime, unemployment

The Quarterly City Manager's Report, released Wednesday shows the city may wind up spending more for unemployment compensation and in overtime costs for crime-fighting projects like Operation Pressure Point.

Report: City may spend more in overtime, unemployment

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The Quarterly City Manager’s Report, released Wednesday shows the city may wind up spending more for unemployment compensation and in overtime costs for crime-fighting projects like Operation Pressure Point.

According to the report, the city projects it will spend $22 million more than the Target Budget and $4 million more than the budget adopted by City Council.

The Police Department projects it will spend $2.5 million more in overtime due to Occupy Philly ($1.5 million), the movement against corporate greed and Operation Pressure Point ($1 million), a citywide program launched in 2008 to focus on crime hot spots.

Occupy Philly protesters were evicted from City Hall’s Dilworth Plaza on Nov. 30. Construction of Dilworth Plaza began recently for the project which includes an ice-skating rink and a café.

Meanwhile, the Fire Department projects it will spend $4 million more than expected due to higher overtime costs due in part to no new firefighter class and an increase in the number of fire fighters injured on duty.

The material, supplies and equipment projection has increased by $5 million due to a rise in higher fuel costs in the Office of Fleet Management.

"Fuel prices are going higher," said Fleet Manager James Muller. "That's why we need the extra money. It's $103 per barrel for oil. As it goes up, our costs go up."

And more inmates plus low staffing levels equals $3 million more that the prison system projects it'll have to dish out in overtime costs.

The Sheriff is projected to spend $2.5 million more than their targeted budget as a result of higher overtime costs and an increase in Deputy Sheriff wage earnings awarded during interest arbitration.

Lastly, the city anticipates spending $5.2 million for the Federal Insurance Contributions Act (FICA)and unemployment compensation which is largely due to the federal extension of unemployment benefits, said Budget Director Rebecca Rhynhart.

The fiscal year 2012 fund balance of $59.7 million is close to what was projected, but lower than budgeted, Rhynhart said, adding that "tax revenues are down as seen across the country."

But several one-time revenues helped to pump up the fund balance, she added.

About this blog
William Bender, a Drexel graduate who landed at the Daily News in 2007, has covered everything from South Philly mobsters to doomsday hucksters. He occasionally writes about local food trucks and always eats everything on his plate, whether it be a bloody rib eye or a corrupt politician. E-mail tips to benderw@phillynews.com
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David Gambacorta, has been a reporter with the Daily News since 2005, covering crime, police corruption and all of the other bizarre things that happen in Philadelphia. Now he’s covering the 2015 mayor’s race, because he enjoys a good circus just as much as the next guy. He’s always looking to get a cup of coffee. Send news tips and other musings on life to gambacd@phillynews.com
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