City Council unanimously passes contentious fiscal budget | News

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City Council unanimously passes contentious fiscal budget
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- After months of heated talks, the Jacksonville City Council finally passes a $945 million operating budget.

Dozens of people turned out for the meeting, including many representing the non-profit sector.

Janet Owens said, "We were pleased with the results. We came out in full force together to be sure programs that help families and children are sustained and the City council was very successful along with the mayor in getting that done today."

But Connie Benham, a house wife, mother and concerned taxpayer thinks there is still a lot of taxpayer money being wasted.

She says its important for the City Council and administration to see that the public is concerned.

Benham said, "It's always very important to find out how our leadership is spending our money all the way down to a dime and loans they are getting us into, debt getting us into, how the pay go is going and just following the process...I think there are lot of frivolous things being paid for and they could still make some cuts."

The biggest changes Jacksonville residents will probably notice is a reduction in library hours and taller grass in medians because they won't be mowed as often and taller grass in parks.

Bill Bishop, City Council President, said, "Long term that cannot continue because you have to maintain your infrastructure or it will fall apart . We are now at the point I believe we have to seriously start looking at how we will address that cannon next year just simply say we're not going to spend as much just because because if we continue to do that we will literally start to see things fall apart around us."

The City Council president says the bottom line is public safety in his opinion will not take a hit and taxes are not going up, but the city is going to run on a very lean budget starting Monday, when the new fiscal year begins.

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