By Marc Knapp
Charleston Mayor Joe Riley noted during the Oct. 12 City Council meeting that deliberations will begin shortly for the 2011 budget and said that at present there is a projected gap of $6 million between revenue and costs.
Despite the difference, the city will not implement a tax increase to balance the budget and is looking at other ways to find cost savings, Riley said, adding that he expected the economic environment to improve by 2012.
A presentation of the city’s budget plan is expected in mid-November.
Last year City Council approved a $146.6 million budget for 2010 that cut spending by more than $1.3 million from the previous year. Charleston reduced employee pay, eliminated raises and increased the city’s franchise fee, which is a tax on power bills.
Charleston has continued to trim costs throughout the year as revenues have fallen short of projections.