November 12, 2009 in Washington Voices

Police, fire present budget proposals

No requests for maintenance, operations increases planned
By The Spokesman-Review

The Cheney City Council continued hearing budget proposals from various departments at its meeting Tuesday night. The council has been hearing from city departments at every meeting since Oct. 13 and will continue to hear budget proposals before they approve the final 2010 budget later this month.

On Tuesday, the council heard from the police department and the fire department. Both departments told the council about accomplishments in 2009 and goals for 2010.

Police Cmdr. Rick Campbell told the council there would be no maintenance or operations increases to the department budget, but will need some incidental funds for accreditation and travel – much of which will be reimbursed to the city through grants.

Campbell told the council that the department needed $2,000 for travel expenses for police Chief Jeff Sale in 2010, but he told the council the chief always tries to find other means to fund his travel.

“He always tries to travel on someone else’s nickel,” Campbell told the council.

Fire Chief Mike Winters told the council that the department would not need extra funds for maintenance and operations, but its budget would be increased slightly because of benefit increases for its employees and other small needs of the department.

Winters said that the department’s call history is going up – it is expected that by the end of the year, the department will have responded to around 1,400 calls. At the end of 2008, the department had responded to 1,301 calls.

Like the police department, the fire department is working on decreasing its overtime and actively looking for grants.

The council will hold a special workshop meeting Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. at City Hall to discuss the budget and will hold another public hearing about the 2010 budget at its regular meeting, Nov. 24.

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