At its meeting on November 25, 2013, the Eugene Budget Committee continues its work to fill the General Fund budget gap and develop a stable City budget. The committee will review strategies analyzed by the Finance Investigative Team (FIT) as well as other reduction strategies proposed during last year’s budget process.
At the 11/25 meeting, the committee will also discuss the newly-released preliminary General Fund forecast. While the fiscal year 2015 (FY15) budget process is still in the early stages, the preliminary forecast indicates that the General Fund gap to fill for FY15 is smaller than expected. At this point the gap is anticipated to be approximately $3 million, down from a $5.3 million gap as previously projected. The smaller gap is primarily because of lower than projected PERS costs and higher than projected property tax revenue. Several factors may still change the forecast before it is finalized in April, but at this point the situation appears improved from what was anticipated last spring.
The Budget Committee has now gathered all of the information it sought for this year’s decision-making: community feedback received during public workshops; the Finance Investigative Team’s analysis of possible solutions; information on the service reductions proposed last year as well as the next tier of potential reductions; and the updated General Fund forecast.
The committee will use all of this information to craft its recommended budget strategies for FY15. It will continue these discussions on 11/25 and at meetings on December 3 and December 9. (The meeting on December 3 was recently added to the schedule.)
Public hearings on the Budget Committee’s recommendations will be held in January. The City Manager will then finalize his proposed budget based on that work, and the proposed budget will also go to Budget Committee and City Council public hearings in the spring.