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Council Members Prepare For Long Budget Meetings

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(Memphis) Memphis City Council members are gearing up for a long day of budget talk set for Tuesday, June 18th.

On Monday, council members Wanda Halbert and Shea Flinn were on WREG’s Live at 9 to talk about how they hope to reach a balanced budget.

“I think we need to freeze all none emergency operations and capital spending. There are things on the table new projects, new operations. Immediately freeze those for a minimum of one year and reassess, reevaluate our financial standing,” said Halbert.

Halbert is also against layoffs and wants to restore the 4.6 percent pay cut for city employees.

“When they mayor asked for the 4.6 percent cut he said it was a temporary fix. That was years ago. If it was not a temporary fix we should not have promised the employee we were going to pay it back. So that is critical. We’ve lied to them one to many times and it’s time to end that debate,” said Halbert.

Tuesday, city administration will present an amended budget proposal to council members that will increase the tax rate to $3.51.

“We really need the administration, I’ve spoken with the mayor about this to clearly define their vision and the tax rate that supports their vision and come in and fight for that,” said Flinn.

“It’s a difficult one, in as politicians we want to make everyone happy, and here you’re going to have to make one group of people happy or the other group of people happy,” said Flinn.

Committee meetings begin Tuesday morning at 8:30. The full council meeting begins Tuesday at 3:30 in council chambers.