Herenton: No property tax increases - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Herenton: No property tax increases

By Kontji Anthony - bio | email | Follow us on Twitter

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - For months he warned of buyouts, layoffs, and dipping into Memphis' monetary reserves to balance the city's budget.  Tuesday, Memphis Mayor Willie Herenton's changed his tune.

On the heels of a trip to Washington, D.C. for a U.S. Conference of Mayors' meeting, Herenton told a Memphis City Council committee Tuesday the Bluff City is in better economic shape than most.

"We have the ability to present a balanced budget," Herenton said.
 
The statement came just three months after Herenton's State of the City Address, when he spoke of possible buyouts, layoffs and dipping into reserves to balance the budget.

"No property tax increases, no layoffs, a 3% raise for all employees, continued quality services to all the citizens of this great city," Herenton said Tuesday. "No reductions in public safety enhancement, blight initiatives and EMA."

Herenton said careful money management allowed for the balanced budget.

"We have been managing decline for a year and a half," he said. "We've watched our vacancies; we've watched our expenditures.  We have been managing the expenditures side of the ledger."

Herenton also said he would recommend a raise for city retirees.

"This is strong city even in a declining fiscal condition," he said.

Herenton said he shared an early peek of the budget at Tuesday's meeting to ease economic fears.

Exactly where is the money coming from the fund those raises and programs?  We won't know that until later this month. 

The mayor plans to unveil next year's budget in full on April 21st.

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