City officials have proposed a $30.3-million budget for 1991-92 that calls for increasing law enforcement spending 25% and funding of such new projects as the remodeling of the city library and the continuing construction of a community center.
The budget, expected to be approved by the City Council next month, raises spending for next year by 5.3%. City officials estimate spending will decline significantly the following year to $26.5 million after a series of building and road projects are completed.
Under the budget proposal, the city's general fund, the portion of the budget used to pay the cost of day-to-day city operations, will rise 7.5% next year to $12.5 million. Many of the added expenses will go toward police protection, including additional patrol hours, community service and school resource officers, and field supervisors.
City officials say the new officers will relieve patrol officers of their paperwork burden and free them for duties in the field.
"The net effect is you get a better utilization of a patrolman's time," said Asst. City Manager Bruce Channing.
Under the proposal, police spending will jump from $3.8 million this year to $4.7 million next year. City officials also estimate that the police budget will rise an additional 10% in 1992-93, bringing the police budget to $5.2 million.
City officials are also proposing a 9% increase in the Parks and Recreation Department budget, to $1.6 million, in part to pay the costs of operating the community center under construction. An additional 19% increase in the department's budget is estimated in 1992-93.
In turn, city officials have been able to cut other budgets, including public relations efforts to promote the opening of the Richard Nixon Library & Birthplace, as well as consultant services to draw up a waste management plan.
For 1991-92, city officials propose using $1.4 million in property tax funds to pay city operating costs. In previous years, much of the property tax money has gone toward capital improvement projects and to city reserves for emergency situations.