The final bill for the massive snow dump on the city this past winter is in – and it's a whopping $19 million.
That’s right, the city shelled out $19 million to clear streets during three monster storms, according to the latest Quarterly City Managers Report. Those funds went to overtime for city workers, hiring outside contracters and buying salt.
The report also reveals that the city is set to end the current fiscal year with a slightly higher deficit than expected, which could further weaken the city's cash-flow situation next year.
To balance next year's budget, Council has voted legislation out of committee that would raise the property tax by 9.9 percent, increase the trash fee for commercial properties and tax some tobacco products. They have not acted on the mayor’s proposed tax on soda.
The current budget plan passed by Council would provide a positive fund balance of $42 million. Nutter officials have argued that this is not enough cash to keep the city afloat all year. And Budget Director Stephen Agostini said the new deficit number -- due to in part to a payment for employee benefits -- means the cash situation will be even tighter than expected.
“It’s going to be a challenge,” he said.