Showdown over spending set between mayor and city council - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Showdown over spending set between mayor and city council


Lubbock City Council meets tonight at 6:15 p.m. and one of the main topics will be a $200,000 budget amendment that Mayor Glen Robertson does not like.

"I want to see a minimum of 90 days after the budget season before we start amending it with anticipated extra sales tax. I just think that's prudent business. To make the decision two weeks after the budget is not good business," said Robertson.

The amendment, which was drafted by Councilwoman Latrelle Joy, would use $200,000 of extra sales tax revenue which is expected by City Manager Lee-Ann Dumbauld. The money would be used to pay for one administrative position within City Council and two auditors. However Mayor Robertson feels the money should go towards helping the community.

"We've got a lot of positions that we're short on. We're at least five officers short right now and actually 40 officers short of the recommended police force. We're short people in the water department, we're short people in the streets department and we need more animal control officers. We need folks out there on the streets providing services to our citizens."

Robertson believes that now is not the time to spend the money and would rather focus on bringing down the city's debt.

"This should've been addressed in my opinion during the budget season. Ms. Dumbauld should've been given direction to bring back to us a priority list of what employees we need and she has done that since two weeks ago. She said there are 15 employees that she would add before she would add these three, so it does concern me."

"Tonight we will discuss paying off $6 million of bond money earned. It'll save the city about two million dollars in interest money over the next several years. We've got to start getting this debt paid down. We have the resources to do this. It's a good expenditure of money and will start reducing that debt level."

The mayor believes tonight's budget amendment will be passed by the same 5-2 margin as two weeks ago, but won't go down without a fight.

"We already have two full-time ladies doing that and one lady that's a receptionist out front. I sure can't see adding another $55,000 a year job in the City Council Support staff."

We reached out to Dumbauld's office this afternoon, but she said that she couldn't comment on a City Council issue.

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