Grass Valley tight on money |

Grass Valley tight on money

A perfect storm of city expenses including a costly ongoing lawsuit, sewer treatment plant upgrades and road improvements are making for a tight Grass Valley budget.

The estimated $12 million budget – which is set for release today – is expected to leave open a few vacant police and public works positions. The 2007-08 budget is expected to focus more on long-neglected road and general infrastructure improvements than previous budgets, said Interim City Administrator Jeff Foltz, who recently outlined his budget plans.

“The question is: What level of service do we want to have to pay for these improvements?” Foltz said.

Foltz is proposing a different approach for funding contingencies, such as the city’s lawsuit with Denver-based Newmont Mining Corp. In previous years, the council has funded contingencies with money left over at the end of the budget year. Foltz wants to set aside contingency funds at the beginning of the year.

Grass Valley’s lawsuit against Newmont Mining Corp. already has cost the city more than $1.3 million in legal and related fees, slashing the city’s general fund balance, which is used for such contingencies, to less than $2 million. The lawsuit is related to the city’s treatment of metal-laden water from an abandoned mine owned by Newmont.

Expected declines in property and sales tax revenue also could hurt the city’s budget picture, Foltz said.

Budget hearings are scheduled for 7 p.m., June 12, in the City Council chambers at Grass Valley City Hall, 125 E. Main St.


To contact Staff Writer Greg Moberly, e-mail or call 477-4234.

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