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December 3, 2012

Council to hold public hearing

A public hearing on new ward lines, the city’s 2013 budget and setting priorities for the city manager are among business items on the Common Council’s agenda for Tuesday night.

The Redistricting Commission has adjusted lines of the city’s eight wards, and a public hearing for the plan will be held in City Hall at 7 p.m. The council is set to vote on the map later during the meeting in Common Council Chambers, and a mayor’s hearing date will be set.

The council will adopt a 2013 budget Tuesday night.

The proposed general fund budget is $14.87 million, up $84,772 or 0.57 percent from the $14.78 million budget for this year. The proposed general fund budget has a deficit of $457,000, however, council members last week discussed a possible amendment to cut one instead of two vacant police officer positions as proposed.

The budget proposal carries a tax levy of $4.4 million, which is up 2 percent and within the state-mandated cap.

A resolution is before the council regarding duties of the city manager and guidelines for oversight and evaluation for the position.

Michael Long started as city manager Oct. 1. The proposal calls for annual reviews in September and in the first year, informal reviews in April and August.

Proposed priority focus areas include developing a plan to eliminate the structural deficit, among other fiscal goals; studying departments and functions; establishing a development plan, including downtown, manufacturing and housing sectors; developing beautification plans for city entrances; and conducting and concluding CSEA negotiations.

The Common Council also will consider an amendment to municipal code regarding “rules of conduct’’ for peddling and soliciting.

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