2014 Budget Adopted By City Council
Photo: Video by kmtv.com
Omaha, NE- On Tuesday, the 2014 budget passed unanimously.
There was very little that council members disagreed on. They all seemed focused on the future and how to keep Omaha's finances in order.
The council only added a handful of resolutions to Mayor Jean Stothert's budget. All of them passed Tuesday afternoon.
Some of the resolutions that stood out focused on sustainability and the police department.
The council voted 4-3 to spend $50,000 to hire a contracted sustainability consultant. It's something those in favor said would pay for itself.
Another resolution was the council and mayor pledging to work together for public safety.
The mayor's budget proposed a recruitment class of 35. The alternative proposed on Tuesday was two recruitment classes.
The goal is to have over 800 officers on the streets by 2015.
“During this process, we have come up with this resolution that acknowledges we are all on the same page trying to get to that level,” said Councilman Pete Festersen. “We all believe that is important and the mayor has now committed to that as well in conversations and publicly.”
The council also adopted a resolution that would give the police department an extra $150,000. It’s something council members said the mayor wanted as well.
The additional funds will give the city the money necessary to hire more officers.
“It wasn't a verbal, but a written communication from the mayor that this was her preference that the additional revenue go toward police, and that’s what I think this reflects,” said Councilmember Chris Jerram.
Both the city attorney and the finance director agreed this is a well-thought-out and balanced budget.
As far as the sustainability consultant goes, the city will outsource. Someone will be contracted for the job, and they will not be a city employee.