The Oak Park village board was presented with a balanced budget for next year on Monday night, which eradicated a $1.7 million deficit in 2011. But trustees will need to figure out in the coming weeks whether they’re on board with the cuts and tax increases used to fill the hole.
Village staff was able to make the numbers line up by keeping a handful of positions vacant in 2011 to save about $1 million, said Chief Financial Officer Craig Lesner. Oak Park bridged the rest of the gap through a number of maneuvers, including upping its revenue projections and cutting back on landscaping planters around town.
The village is not eyeing any layoffs next year, after already having trimmed about 70 positions over the past three years. However, Oak Park is currently proposing to raise some parking fees, the water rate and its share of property tax bills.
Overall expenses for the village are projected to go up by 2.4 percent, year to year, from $122.4 million to $125.3 million in 2011.
Trustees will discuss the proposed budget in the coming weeks, and are tentatively scheduled to adopt it on Nov. 15. You can view the financial plan and comment on it by going to http://www.oak-park.us/Finance/Finance.html.
For more on this story, see the Oct. 13 print edition of Wednesday Journal, or check back at OakPark.com.