Lewisburg Officials Reportedly Might Lay Off Employees After $100,000 Overdraft

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Members of the Lewisburg City Council reportedly adopted a policy this week that may lead to the city laying off employees seven months after the city’s bank account was overdrawn by $100,000.

This, according to the Lewisburg-based Marshall County Tribune this week.

But, as the paper quoted Councilman Jerry Gordon as saying, no one has made any decisions as they pertain to layoffs.

Department heads believed the city would cut employees from the police, fire, and parks departments, The Marshall County Tribune reported.

“In December, the city’s bank account was $100,000 overdrawn, forcing the city to borrow money on future tax revenues in order to make payroll. Ultimately, the city drew $700,000 in tax anticipation notes to keep operating, which have been repaid. The council has already authorized up to $1 million in notes to be issued this fiscal year. By their own resolution, the city should maintain a minimum of 30 percent of the operating budget in the fund balance at the start of a fiscal year,” the paper reported.

“That equates to roughly $3.5 million, based on the operating budget. On July 1 this year the city had approximately $300,000 on hand. While sales tax revenues come in monthly from the state, the bulk of the city budget comes in from property taxes, most of which come in in the second half of the fiscal year. The fund balance provides operating cash for the city during the lower revenue months.”

The city, the paper went on to say, cut at least $1 million in proposed expenditures from last year’s budget in an effort to minimize the losses.

City officials told directors to submit budget requests 10 percent lower than the previous year, The Marshall County Tribune reported.

“City employees did not receive a cost of living raise for this year. The $200,000 set aside for paving has been eliminated this year, and hours for the Recreation Center and pool have been cut, among the many other across the board reductions,” the paper reported.

“The budget the city adopted at the end on June called for $11.5 million in expenditures versus an estimated $11.9 million in revenues, putting over $400,000 back into the fund balance. Seemingly, the council wishes to add more this year to that number, without raising taxes, which is why the potential for layoffs is being considered.”

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Chris Butler is an investigative journalist at The Tennessee Star. Follow Chris on Facebook. Email tips to [email protected]
Photo “Lewisburg Courthouse” by Ichabod. CC BY-SA 3.0.



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