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The Suburbanite
  • Lakemore financial situation looking up

  • In August 2010, the village was declared to be in fiscal emergency when the general fund fell to nearly $1 million. Since that point, the deficit grew as the village worked to balance transfers that were made to shore up specific funds. That, however, is changing quickly.

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  • Village officials anticipate being out of fiscal emergency before August 2016.
    In August 2010, the village was declared to be in fiscal emergency when the general fund had a deficit of nearly $1 million. Since that point, the deficit grew as the village worked to balance transfers that were made to shore up specific funds.
    Two years later, things are looking up, Mayor Rick Justice told members of council at a regular meeting Sept. 3.
    At the time of the meeting, the deficit of the general fund had been reduced to $651,000.
    “We are basically 50 percent out of emergency, and ahead of schedule,” Justice said. “I am very encouraged, but we have to keep our focus on getting out of fiscal emergency.”
    Justice is aware that there are big expenses looming. The village needs an ambulance, road repairs and more personnel. However, there is little village officials can do until Lakemore is released from the status.
    To cut spending, Justice said the Department of Public Services (DOPS) has trimmed personnel from seven workers and a village administrator to three workers with no administrator. Roads, meanwhile, are being repaired with the dura patcher and it seems to be helping with the road situation temporarily.
    “Our main objective remains, getting out of fiscal emergency,” said Justice.
    Cuts also were made in the fire and police departments. Local tax credits for residents working outside the village were also cut to generate more revenue. Officials have stated they intend to restore those credits once the emergency designation is removed.
    “There are better things on the way, our revenue is increasing faster than we thought,” Justice said. “We have seen the cuts we made are working well, and the commercial revenue with new business in the village is helping.”
    In other business Sept. 3, council:
    • Approved an emergency ordinance amending a previous ordinance to make appropriations for current expenses and other expenditures of the village. This allowed for transfer of $4,500 from the general fund to fund the emergency medical fund for EMS billing contractual services.
    • Approved an emergency resolution appointing Elizabeth Ray and Larry Petry to three-year terms on the Lakemore Board of Zoning and Building Appeals.
    • Re-appointed John Brown and Thomas Gostlin to the Lakemore Board of Zoning and Building Appeals.  
    • Appointed George Malek and Cathy Cliver to the Lakemore Board of Zoning and Building Appeals.  
    • Heard second readings on two resolutions: A resolution for termination of Dakota Parsell and William Hopkins as non-technical support staff for the Lakemore Fire Department and a resolution accepting the resignations of Elizabeth Smith and Larry Burge from the Lakemore Fire Department.
    • Heard first readings of two ordinances: Re-appointing Robb Seders for a six-year term on the Lakemore Planning Commission and the purchase of billing software from government accounting solutions.
    Page 2 of 2 - The next council meeting will be at 7 p.m. Monday at the Municipal building.