Mayor David Maynard on Tuesday, June 22, laid out a proposed timeline for the Winder City Council to adopt a budget for fiscal year 2022, as the council met to pass a continuing resolution to keep city operations funded over the next month while budget talks continue past the end of the current fiscal year.
In a short meeting Tuesday, the council approved the spending resolution, which at least temporarily will keep the city appropriations at FY21 levels, beginning July 1. The adopted city budget for the current fiscal year, which ends June 30, totaled $43.15 million with a $17.2 million General Fund.
Maynard said Tuesday that he and city administration intend to present a proposed balanced budget to the council at its July 1 work session and are aiming for July 6 as the first public hearing date and July 20 for the second public hearing and final adoption.
The council’s action Tuesday came as little consensus has formed among the body to date regarding the FY22 budget. In a presentation June 10 to the council, city administrator Mandi Cody pitched increasing the city’s millage rate from 4 to 14.7 mills as a way of funding priorities identified by the council and administration over the last several months, but also eliminating the city’s continued reliance utility fund transfers every year to balance its General Fund budget.
That proposal drew strong public backlash from numerous residents as well as some council members at a Thursday, June 17, work session. The council met for over three hours Thursday but could not reach an agreement over whether they would like to keep the millage rate and utility transfer amounts roughly the same or settle somewhere in between.