Council approves major cuts to City budget to fund street repairs

City Council approves a new budget that clears the way for some residential street repairs.

CORPUS CHRISTI (KIII NEWS) - After a lengthy discussion Tuesday and proposals for across-the-board cuts for every City department, Corpus Christi's City Council agreed on cuts that would allow more money to fix streets.

Mayor Joe McComb said it was the campaign promise of all council members that roads were one of the top priorities for the City to fix. He had proposed an approximately 1.4-percent cut across the City's operating budget in every department.

McComb said it was not just zero-based budgeting but common sense to find funding for residential street repair.

Council rejected the idea before another funding source was presented.

"We just felt that we didn't get a chance to properly discuss what was voted on in May for the streets, and so I felt compelled that we've got to address it," McComb said. "I mean, we tried it by raising a two-cent tax and they didn't want to do that."

"Well I appreciate that he found it, but my concern was he didn't show the impact of what that was going to do," Councilmember Carolyn Vaughn said. "The decrease in the departments, because you could affect the senior citizens, the police, the fire, and I don't want that to happen."

City Manager Margie Rose proposed separate cuts in different departments, including $1 million from the Retiring Officers Reserve Fund and potential landfill revenues from Hurricane Harvey; more than $1 million from the contributions to fleet vehicle replacement; $500,000 from the economic incentive for Schlitterbahn; and half a million dollars leftover from 2008 street bond projects.

Along with $261,000 from the reserve appropriation fund, it adds up to about $3.4 million for the residential street repair fund.

With those amendments Council unanimously approved next year's budget, which begins Oct. 1.

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