News and Tribune

Clark County

January 26, 2008

Jeffersonville puts hold on government spending

Jeffersonville Mayor Tom Galligan announced the city will maintain 2007 spending levels until the 2008 budget is approved by the state. Local governments across Indiana are putting similar holds on spending. The Indiana Department of Local Government Finance asked all counties to use 2007 budgets until property tax bills are completed and budgets can be approved.

Until the county can distribute property tax money to municipalities and cities, local governments will operate using 2007 budgets.

Indiana counties lack 2008 budget orders because the department can’t approve budgets without certified property assessments and not one of the 92 counties have turned them in, said Mary Jane Michalak, director of communications for the department.

“When there is a delay in the assessment process it’s a domino effect,” Michalak said. “County [governments] can continue to spend funds on wages, services and contracts even though they don’t have a budget for 2008 and services can continue for county residents.

“The 2007 budget should remain in place until the 2008 budget is approved,” she said.

Jeffersonville budget levels for the approved 2007 budget allot $14.6 million for the general fund, $1.4 million for fire pension and $819,847 for police pensions, $1 million for parks and $943,591 for sanitation. Jeffersonville had requested about $1 million more for the general fund in 2008.

Galligan said the city was planning on sticking to the 2007 budget until the 2008 budget was approved prior to the request by the Department of Local Government Finance.

“It is something that would have been implemented anyway,” he said. “It’s just bad business to spend more money than you’re guaranteed coming in.”

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