City council asking for discretionary fund increase

MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) – The debate over Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson’s new budget proposal is heating up.

FOX10 News has been checking through the figures and discovered the Mobile City Council is asking for a big increase in its discretionary funds.

The seven member city council wants to increase its discretionary funds money from $25,000 to $40,000 a year. That’s a 60 percent jump.

Mobile City Council President Gina Gregory said one of the reasons for the increase is that council members now pay for their postage costs, which was more than $53,000 in 2014. Next year, according to Gregory, each council person has to decide what is more important – travel or district improvements.

“I think it’s something we have to decide what is important, whether it’s going to a convention or doing a project in our district, and each council person will have to reach that decision for themselves,” said Gregory.

Discretionary funds are used to pay for district projects, helping non-profit agencies or community groups and travel – like trips to the London and Paris air shows.

FOX10 News did notice Mayor Stimpson is not requesting additional discretionary fund money. He’s keeping the same amount as 2014 – $25,000. A spokesperson said the mayor did not see a need for an increase.

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