MANSFIELD--During the Mansfield City Council Finance Committee briefing on Tuesday; Finance Director, Linn Steward, warned Council that city tax revenues are shrinking. Steward said, although there have been job expansions in the city, “there has not been any major job growth” or enough jobs created to sustain or to improve revenues. In the past, it has been emphasized the need to reduce spending and for departments to stay within their budgets. Steward stated there is a significant problem with elected officials [overseeing department budgets] not following through with their promises to stay within their operating budgets.
Councilman Bryant applauded Steward for her professionalism and for her timely reports. However, Bryant says he’s concerned. “Director, in your official capacity, I don’t understand why we [the City] are not listening to you or to your warnings to stop with the extra spending; it just doesn’t make sense to me.”
Steward also warned on the creation of new personnel ordinances and specifically, the Law Director’s desire to create the position of Animal Control Officer. Steward mentioned that funds are available in the safety services budget, but are for the hiring of new police officers. However, she stated that there have not been enough qualified police candidates to hire. Safety Services Director, Lori Cope, concurred.
Bryant says he is committed to furthering the Finance Director’s call in asking the City to monitor spending.
“In 2018, I will take things a step further in forming a stronger partnership with Finance Committee Chairman and 3rd Ward Councilman, Jon Van Harlingen; to ensure that any legislation concerning safety and with our airport, are in line with the city budget.”
For more information on Mansfield’s financial status, visit: www.ci.mansfield.oh.us.