Ogdensburg lawmakers scramble to iron out budget before city manager leaves

Ogdensburg budget talks
Published: Oct. 4, 2022 at 5:47 AM EDT
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OGDENSBURG, New York (WWNY) - Ogdensburg city councillors are getting an early start on next year’s budget as the city stares down a $3.5 million budget gap.

Outgoing city manager Stephen Jellie has been pushing to get a head start on the budget. Council members reviewed a tentative 2023 spending plan at a meeting Monday night.

The budget as presented has no change in the property tax rate and would keep the same number of city employees.

It also includes a nearly 20% increase in health insurance costs, as well as a 10% reduction in money being pulled from the water and sewer funds -- something Jellie says the city has relied on too much.

The city would need to take about $3.5 million bucks from its fund balance, so the numbers are likely to change.

“It’s going to be, how much fund balance do you use, if any? How much tax increase or decrease do you do? How many positions stay strong?” Jellie said. “And then ultimately, can the staff find more efficiencies in a year when they’ve had to find every efficiency they could for the last two years to make 20% reduction in the tax revenue.”

Jellie wants to hold five sessions this month to iron out a balanced budget for council by the beginning of November.

Jellie has accepted a fire chief job in Wyoming. His final day as city manager will be November 4.