Portage city manager says smart spending helps save money in new budget

PORTAGE, Mich. — Portage's new spending plan might be more modest than the past one because of the pandemic, however the city administrator said administrations won't be settled. 

The Portage City Council passed a $82 million spending Tuesday, May 25, 2021, for the impending monetary year, which runs from July 1, 2021, through June 30, 2022. 

The financial plan was not exactly the almost $90 million 2020-2021 monetary year spending plan. City Manager Joe La Margo said they needed to spending plan minimalistically because of vulnerabilities from the pandemic. In any case, he guaranteed that administrations won't linger behind 

"The nature of administrations will be improved," said La Margo. "The quality won't go down in light of the fact that the financial plan is a tad less fatty." 

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He said the city was being shrewd with its spending. The city diminished its capital spending plan to ensure the scheduled ventures were finished inside the financial year, said La Margo. The city additionally investigated various methods of acquiring vehicles. 

"At the point when we were purchasing fire engines, which cost more than $500,000 each, and we expected to purchase two of them, we concluded that we planned to rent them, and afterward we'd own them toward the end. Presently it smooths out the dollars," La Margo said. 

Also, La Margo said the city increased a portion of its unique occasions to set aside some cash and smoothed out administrations without bargaining quality. 

La Margo said 2021 the seventh continuous year the city made a fair spending plan without expanding local charges. Inhabitants would just see a slight expansion in the sewer rate, since Portage gets its water from Kalamazoo, so the expense was passed down. 

Albeit the city financial plan was less than the past one, La Margo said there were still a ton to anticipate. 

The Lynn and Charles Zhang Portage Community Senior Center was relied upon to be finished in spring of 2022. The Martin Luther King Jr. Park was scheduled to open in the fall. Besides, the city planned for park enhancements, significant street projects on Milham Avenue and different spots, and unique occasions. Also, the city made a variety and effort local area organizer to help guarantee comprehensiveness all through the local area, La Margo said. 

Help bundle: Battle Creek, Kalamazoo and Portage city authorities respond to American Rescue Plan reserves 

La Margo said the spending plan doesn't consider the extra cash Portage would get from the American Rescue Plan, which will add up to about $5.6 million throughout the span of two years. 

"We're seeing how we will spend that to ensure it largestly affects the city," said La Margo.