Lubbock City Council passed a budget amendment 5-2 Thursday night, which added up to an additional $200,000 between 3 additional City positions.
The Council approved two internal audit positions and another City Council assistant position.
Mayor Glen Robertson voted against the measure and said the move was not a wise financial decision for the City.
"We've got a severe shortage of Health Department Inspectors, we're 45 police officers short," said Mayor Robertson. "We've got 3 District in this City 1,2 and 3 that are experiencing rapid urban decay. We have to have more code enforcement officers on the ground."
Councilwoman Karen Gibson echoed Mayor Robertson's concerns and urged the Council to utilize the three current City employees among all Council members before bringing on any new hires.
"We need to be very careful of overstepping our boundaries," said Gibson. Gibson stressed it was City Manager Lee Ann Dumbauld's job to recognize which City positions need to be filled. "Give her a different direction for next time," said Gibson.
Councilman Victor Hernandez supported the measure and said he personally needed more staff support to help assist with his district's current projects.
Councilman Jim Gerlt voted for the measure, even though he did not support the added City assistant position.
"I will be supporting this motion because I think we need the auditors," said Gerlt. "I'm swallowing the pill on the administrative assistants but we could probably use her if we get one."
Councilwoman Latrelle Joy said she opposed Mayor Robertson's budget cuts from the beginning, but was advised by Dumbauld to provide her recommendations after the budget had already passed.
Hernandez requested a list from Dumbauld, which revealed 15 positions the City does not currently possess. Dumbauld said she did not mention the recommendations prior to the budget passage due to the current property tax rate.
"If we're willing to gamble and I'm not," said Mayor Robertson. "But if as a Council we're willing to gamble, that sales tax revenues are going to rise, I still think we're spending the money unwisely."
Mayor Robertson called for more Health Inspectors, Building Inspectors, Code Enforcement Officers and Lubbock Police Officers.
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