Budget 2018

Image Courtesy of the City of Homer

The Homer City Council voted down an ordinance Monday that would have required the city manager to take inflationary pressures on the budget and the cost of living for employees into account during the budgeting process. 

The ordinance would have required the city manager to present the council with an overview of the Anchorage Consumer Price Index from the previous year, the only city in the state where inflation is tracked. The city manager would also be required to track cost-of-living raises given to city employees in three nearby communities.

City Council approves 2018 budget

Dec 12, 2017
Image Courtesy of the City of Homer

The Homer City Council unanimously approved a roughly $22 million dollar budget Monday.

The spending plan is relatively flat compared to 2017. City Manager Katie Koester called it a conservative and cautious approach.

Like other municipalities across the state, Homer’s budget outlook is looking grim. State revenue sharing has declined significantly over the past few years. Sales tax, which accounts for half of the city’s revenue, is also expected to stay flat and 2018’s healthcare premiums spiked about 8 percent.

Courtesy of the City of Homer

The Homer City Council made some adjustments to the 2018 draft budget Monday.

The council approved .5-percent cost of living adjustment for city employees. The Employee Committee initially asked the council for a 1-percent raise, but council member Heath Smith expressed concern over the $90,000 move.

He said it would eliminate a portion of future savings the city gained after voters approved using a road-and-trail-construction fund to pay for road maintenance this fall, which will go into effect in 2019.