City Manager Karl Amylon and Finance Director Bob Newell write in an overview of the draft city budget that it was created based on guidance from the City Council. That guidance included not exceeding this year’s budgeted spending levels, and not increasing sales or property taxes.
The draft budget doesn’t call for increased taxes, but some fees are expected to rise. They include an 8-percent wastewater-rate increase, a 7-percent harbor-rate hike, a 20-percent increase for solid waste disposal rates, and a 10-percent increase for garbage collection service.
The draft budget also maintains city staffing levels, with small cost-of-living adjustments for some union groups; and an increase in employee health insurance costs.
There are other increasing costs to the city, much of it due to debt repayment for the new fire station and new library. There also is the possibility of decreased revenue, depending on what the Legislature decides this coming session regarding the cruise passenger vessel tax and revenue sharing.
The overall City of Ketchikan draft budget shows total revenue of about $58.5 million. It calls for spending about $64.5 million, using reserves to make up the difference.
Thursday’s special City Council budget work session starts at 7 p.m. in City Council chambers, with time for public comment at the start of the meeting.