Mobile Finance Committee meets to discuss proposed budget

Mobile's Finance Committee is expected to vote on sending the amended 2014 budget to the city council, who will also vote on it.
Mobile's Finance Committee is expected to vote on sending the amended 2014 budget to the city council, who will also vote on it.

MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) – FOX10 News will be at a meeting Tuesday, March 18 where Mobile’s Finance Committee is expected to vote on sending the amended 2014 budget to the city council, who will also vote on it.

An amended budget was presented by Mayor Sandy Stimpson’s staff last week. The Finance Committee will decide whether or not to send it to the full city council for a vote. Another point of the finance committee meeting is so council members could ask about specific line items.

The Finance Committee is made up of Mobile City Council members Fred Richardson, Bess Rich and Chair Joel Daves. However, the entire city council showed up to the 1 p.m. meeting.

Mayor Stimpson also attended the meeting, along with the police chief, interim fire chief, city attorney, city chief of staff and the city finance director.

Richardson got a little heated at the meeting, asking for the audited numbers for 2013. He wanted specific numbers for the Exploreum and Center for the Living Arts.

City Finance Director Paul Wesch responded, saying the city has been paying for the Exploreum’s utilities since 2012, which he said can’t be done unless a contract is approved.

Council member C.J. Small asked about the budget for the police department, saying it would be cut by more than 40 percent.

Mobile Police Chief James Barber addressed the question, saying there is no impact at street level. That means there is no impact of officers on the street.

The chief said the budget amount reflects the consolidation of two precincts and the restructuring of the police department.

Fox10 News reporter Chasity Byrd is at the meeting and will have a full recap on Fox10 News at 5 p.m.

Also, follow Chasity on Twitter for live updates.

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