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Duncan explains department budget cut

(Source KSWO) (Source KSWO)

DUNCAN, OK (KSWO) -All city offices in Duncan will see a slash in their budget, and a declining sales tax is to blame. 

City Manager Jim Frieda says he sent an email out Tuesday informing all city department heads of an immediate 10 percent cut to their budget. Frieda says this is a common procedure when the city's general fund takes a hit, but something that needs immediate attention until revenues rise.

City offices will have a lower operating budget when it comes to travel expenses, training and overtime. Frieda says while he's kept the city department heads in the loop on the budget cuts, it's not something he wanted to put in place. He's outlined what the city intends to do when it comes to working extra hours.

"Typically, when we have a project planned and we have a deadline on it, we'll work overtime to complete it based on the requirement on the deadline. I've asked that they not do that, not work the overtime, we'll just have to take a little more time to complete the project," Frieda explained.

When it comes to police and fire departments, the cuts won't affect the manpower on the street, but it will affect how often they service their vehicles.

"Taking a look at their expenditures for gasoline and stuff and maintenance. Taking a hard look and cutting out there," Frieda said.

Frieda says that's not the only area that city departments across the board will see a difference.

"We have a large expenditure on training. When an individual goes to training sessions it includes travel time and stays in hotels and motels. So, we've asked them to cut back unless it's absolutely essential to their certification," he explained.

Frieda says with the sales tax revenue is down 22 percent from last year and the budget cuts are here to stay. He says he's prepared to increase the percentage of cuts should the sales tax continue to drop; something he says the city understands is part of the job.

"The department directors work hand in hand with us on a daily basis to put the budget together. So, they understand when there are problems we have to take measures to make up for that lost income," Frieda said.

Frieda says they'll monitor the sales tax cash flow monthly and the progress of the budget cuts quarterly. He'll get his next set of numbers on March 9.

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