Phoenix tries to bridge $38 million gap for next year's budget

PHOENIX - Across the board pay concessions for city employees and an increase in fees for Phoenix residents are part of the proposed budget for 2015.

Ed Zuercher took over as City Manager for David Cavasos.

Zuercher blames a number of issues for the massive deficit.

“Our expenses are up more than expected,” said Zuercher. “Our revenue has decreased due to the growth.”

Zuercher says the city also needed to do some investments that cost money.

Last fall, the City Council also cut the city’s food tax.

“If the food tax hadn't been cut, there would be about $12 million more dollars in revenue,” said Zuercher.

Zuercher says ultimately the City Manager is to blame for the $38 million dollar deficit.

Zuercher said last year, a team of 28 researchers, helped former City Manager David Cavazos, write a budget. The City Council then approved it.

Zuercher says no one was fired or disciplined and some of the researchers from last year are helping with this year’s budget.

Zuercher says projections moving forward will be his responsibility. His proposed budget calls for higher fees and across the board pay concessions to city employees.

The City Council is set to vote on the budget May 20th.

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