City Budget Officially Passed
Photo: Video by kmtv.com
Omaha, NE- The city of Omaha's 2014 budget is officially in the books, but not without some vetoes from Mayor Jean Stothert. One of the vetoes, get money to implement 311 instead of the mayor's hotline.
Mayor Jean Stothert said her top priority when creating the budget was public safety. City Council President Pete Festersen says they're heading in the right direction.
"I think we're starting to get there, I think we had a good conversation about adding more police in 14 and 15 which we all know we need to do and now have committed to do." says Festersen.
Last week, the mayor returned two budget resolutions, including money for a 311 system, a hotline where city and county residents can address issues in their neighborhoods.
"I wasn't surprised, disappointed, but the mayor had her reasons, and I have my mesons for and I've got the communities best interest at heart and she has the overall operation of the city at heart." says Councilman Garry Gernandt.
The mayor instead keeps her own "mayor's hotline", saying a 311 system would cost $250,000 a year.
She sent a letter to the council, saying a woman hired to research the 311 system has now been assigned to the mayor's hotline staff. The letter didn't sit well will Councilmen Gernandt.
"With all due respect, in the 12 years I've been here, I have never seen a veto message that contained a name of a former city employee just to make a point." says Gernandt.
The vote to override the veto failed 4-3, but the overall budget passed.
The fire department $90.6 million budget remains in place. The new budget will go into effect January 1st.