Hoover mayor proposes $111 million budget

HOOVER – Hoover Mayor Frank Brocato presented a proposed budget to the City Council on Monday, Sept. 5, that includes a decrease in revenue for the coming fiscal year.

“As we look ahead, we know that our sales tax revenue is slightly down,” Brocato said. “We don’t know if that’s a trend or an aberration, but as good managers we want to be proactive in what we do and good stewards of the funds that are provided to us.”

Studies of projected revenue and staffing are ongoing, Brocato said.

The proposed budget calls for $111 million in General Fund revenue, a 1.6-percent decrease from the current fiscal year, Melinda James Lopez, chief financial and information officer, told the city council.

Budgeted expenses include $62 million for personnel, $34 million for operations, $12 million for debt service and $5 million for the Hoover City School System.

City Councilman Derrick Murphy commended Lopez for her work.

“I’ve been in meetings with Dr. Lopez, and I have to commend her because she tells you what you need to hear instead of what you want to hear,” Murphy said. “I appreciate you being as truthful as possible with us and not holding back any punches.”

The proposed budget also includes about $10 million in capital projects such as information technology upgrades, road work, and sidewalk and neighborhood improvements, Brocato said.

“We’ve made every effort to fulfill the needs of our citizens,” he said. “We’re going to continue to offer the wonderful services our citizens have become accustomed to.”

The council will review the proposed budget along with information presented at Finance Committee budget hearings scheduled for 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 11, and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 12.

The hearings, which will be held in the Council Chambers, on the third floor of City Hall at 100 Municipal Lane, and are open to the public.

A vote on the budget is expected at a special called council meeting on Sept. 29.

The city’s current budget was approved on March 6, about five months into the fiscal year, with the delay caused by the transition to a new mayor and council following the 2016 municipal election.

The current budget included revenues of $112.3 million.