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Sam Penrod ReportingProvo's Mayor today took to the streets to sell his budget plan for next year.
He unveiled his plans while on a bus tour through the city. Provo Mayor Lewis Billings announced plans to increase the city's budget next year by nearly two percent.
He made his pitch today for a city budget of $141,427,297.00 for the fiscal year of 2008 which begins in Provo on July 1. It's a 1.7 percent increase, which the mayor believes is conservative to ensure the projected revenues are there, even if the economy hits a few bumps in the road.
Among the highlights will be adding two more police officers to the force and creating an emergency management coordinator position for the city.
The city will also invest $1 million for a future recreation center for the city.
As for the city's broadband network which continues to struggle financially, the city will extend $1 million from the city's energy department to keep it out of the red. Billings says, "The shortage and cash flow need to sustain that operation is getting smaller and smaller. We're back out on the street in the last two weeks inviting different proposals to come in and provide services. We haven't had an aggressive focus on a business and customer play on the Provo network, and we would like to solicit proposals to do that."
Mayor Billings also wants to put money in a fund which he hopes will be able to retire the bonds for the library fund early, which could save the city nearly $1 million.
The mayor says the best news of his proposed budget is that there will be no tax increases.