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Budget woes continue for Wheeling

Updated: Tuesday, August 5 2014, 05:10 PM EDT

WHEELING, W.Va--

Budget discussions continue in the city of Wheeling in order to avoid a $250,000 shortfall.

Wheeling City Manager Robert Herron said he’s concerned about the 2014-2015 fiscal year. Herron has suggested cutting more than $800,000 from the budget by eliminating 20 or 21 positions.

Most of those cuts would come from positions that are currently vacant – the city remains on a hiring freeze.

Herron said the plan leaves a more than $600,000 surplus, providing breathing room to absorb expected cost increases next year for items such as pensions and employee health insurance.

The plan, however, was tabled in July.

Councilman Ken Imer said he’s against cuts and would like a better solution. Imer suggests a $1 user fee for residents.

“A weekly fee, about $4 a month, and it would be imposed on those working within the city limits,” said Imer.

Imer said the fee is basically a collection fee and many other cities already have one in place.

Weirton's $2-per-week tax brought in about $840,000 during the 2013-2014 fiscal year, according to city leaders.

Imer said he’s unsure how much a fee would help Wheeling.

Herron said he is sure the fee will be discussed.

City leaders will discuss the budget again at the next finance meeting. That date has not yet been announced.

Leaders say they are still reviewing all their options. Herron said he would like a budget in place by October.

Budget woes continue for Wheeling


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