Public gets first look at Wichita budget

Wichita (KSN File Photo)
Wichita (KSN File Photo)

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WICHITA, Kansas – The public is getting the first look at the city’s proposed budget for 2014 and 2015.

The $543 million budget is balanced and comes with realignments and changes in funding.

Some of the highlights of this year’s budget include a stable mill levy for the 20th consecutive year.

The city will eliminate vacant positions and realign fewer than 20 current employees.

The public could see changes in how fire department equipment is deployed by the city and realigning fire response services that will allow the re-purposing of six firefighters.

Transit services are funded through 2014.

There are several strategic reductions including privatization of security at City Hall, discontinuation of library services at Orchard Recreation Center and re-purposing the Wichita Wildlife Exhibit at Central Riverside Park.

The budget also increases funding for  street maintenance – going toward refurbishing 300 miles of residential streets which is higher than years past.

It’s an element the city heard was important to residents.

“The increase is in what we call our contracted street management as you know street maintenance is a core mission, we’ll fund an increase in technology to allocate more dollars and stretch those dollars further,” says Mark Manning, with the city’s Department of Finance.

Also accomplished by the budget is the reserve funds will stay at over $23 million.

You can view the city budget in it’s entirety by clicking here.

A social media town hall will be hosted by city staff at 6 p.m. July 17th to collect additional feedback from Wichita residents.

 

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