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WJBD - Local News - Centralia Will See a Million Dollar Surplus in General Fund if 2014 Budget is Approved

Centralia Will See a Million Dollar Surplus in General Fund if 2014 Budget is Approved

By Rob Sussman, WJBD News

Centralia City Manager Dan Ramey praised decisive action from the City Council on Insurance Reform and the cooperation from various department heads for putting the city in the "right direction" during a special work session on the city's 2014 budget on Monday. If the 2014 budget is approved by the council at the next city council meeting, Centralia is expected to end the year with over $1 million in the general fund, up from $776,394 in 2013 and a deficit of $21,474 in 2012.

Ramey warned the council that the course must be maintained, and that seemingly small choices can add up fast.

"Things have changed fast. I have to warn this council and future councils that things can change and can change the other direction, fast. So we're not out of the woods yet" Ramey said.

The city allocated money for several new projects and services. Fairview Park is expecting several new improvements, including a new railroad themed pavilion, new playground equipment, a bocce ball court, reconstruction of the Horseshoe pits, a new mower, and the installation of new picnic tables and benches.

The Centralia Police Department will see two new officers, two new police cars, a new radar unit and five new bulletproof vests in Fiscal Year 2014. The Fire Department will receive two new computers and concrete work at the Eastside Station. 

Also in the budget are $100,000 for the demolition of derelict houses, $66,450 for the local share in a $992,000 airport improvement project financed through a federal grant to replace runway lighting and electrical systems at Centralia Airport, $5,000,000 for improvements to Airport Road and Calumet, and $150,000 in Capital improvements to Raccoon Lake.

A public hearing on the budget is scheduled for 6:30 pm on December 23rd, 2013 in the Centralia City Council Chambers at City Hall.

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