LOMITA : New City Budget Cuts Council Pay, Travel


The City Council on Monday unanimously adopted a $7.5-million budget that includes pay cuts for council members and less money for travel while holding the line on most other expenditures.

The spending package avoids layoffs but also provides no pay raises for city employees. But city officials are concerned that further cuts by the state would put the budget into the red.

“We don’t have a reserve in the budget,” said City Administrator Walker J. Ritter. Any money taken by the state would come at the expense of existing programs and services, he said.


The fear that the state might take more money was one of the reasons the council and Ritter decided against giving city employees a raise, said Mayor Ben Traina.

In addition, council members voted to give up their $50 a month salary as housing authority members. The move will save $3,000 a year in a budget that has small cutbacks in many areas from capital outlays to part-time employees, Ritter said.

The deepest cuts came in travel and conference expenses, with the council voting to bring Lomita’s travel budget in line with other South Bay cities, Traina said. For the coming year, the council has budgeted $17,500--half what it spent this past fiscal year.

A survey done earlier this year showed Lomita was spending more on travel than other comparable cities, Traina said.