Without fanfare or debate, the city council officially approved the 2020 city budget Monday night.
Also approved, is a $16.4 million General Fund Request, money which will be used to fund a variety of capital improvements throughout the city.
The $16.4 million will be borrowed at the same time other city debt is being retired.
The borrowing does not impact directly on the windfall of money about to hit the city treasury. The loans will be paid back like any other – from month to month with interest until they are gone. The first quarterly payment of about $6 million from Wynn Resorts will shortly be deposited neatly into the city treasury.
The borrowings for sidewalk repairs, design services, and for park construction and Everett Square improvements, among others, will set the city back $16.4 million any way one chooses to look at it.
The Everett School Department presented to the mayor and to the city council a $85 million spending budget for 2020 at the joint convention Monday night.
The School Department budget reflected the collaborative thinking of school administrators and leadership with the administration. Discussions that took place prior to the budget presentation appeared to assure the School Department that it will be getting exactly what it asked for.
In talks shared around the city council table came the admonishment that no additional funding would become available during the year for the schools – and the budget figure that acting Superintendent of Schools Janet Gauthier presented would be met.
The city will spend $208 million in 2020 to keep the ball of municipal government rolling, according to the mayor and Eric Demas, the city’s Chief Financial Officer during presentations they made to a joint convention of the city council and the school committee Monday night at city hall.
The mayor read from a prepared text informing the city government that this year’s budget presentation was perhaps his best ever.
He said the 2020 budget, to be discussed more vigorously during a Saturday session before the city council at city hall, would reveal itself to be 4% above last year’s budget but representing, in reality, aa 0% increase over last year when all is said and done.
The mayor detailed the restructuring that is going on, which includes a mix of layoffs, retirements, transfers and jobs remaining unfilled.
A brief but informative presentation by Everett Public Schools Special Education Director Dr. Michael Baldassarre on his department’s spending and cost-saving practices was stricken from Monday night’s City Council proceedings.
Baldassarre and Assistant Superintendents Charles Obremski and Kevin Shaw were prepared to talk about the major facets of the financial crisis facing the Everett Public Schools, but the councilors opted not to hear them, saying the presentations would be a repeat of information discussed during the previous week’s School Committee meeting. But Dr. Baldassarre has not spoken at a public meeting about the challenges and successes of his department.