Tucson’s grim budget outlook incomplete, council says


By Justin Sayers | Tucson.com

Members of the Tucson City Council on Tuesday “poked holes” in the city’s budget for next year, expressing concern that it did not take into account federal funding that could overcome at least some of the initial revenue shortfalls caused by the coronavirus.

In their first look at the budget presented by city manager Michael Ortega, the councilmembers said they did not want to yet discuss any potential one-time funding sources to overcome the revenue shortage, saying that the budget did not take into account things like $95.6 million the city received through the federal CARES act, and $44.3 million from the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Ortega has implemented a 1% monthly cut for each city department, while also asking department heads to prepare what a 15% cut to their departments could look like should the economy not recover as experts expect it to by next calendar year. He recommended one-time funding sources, such as dipping into reserve funds, as a solution to “buy time” until revenues recover.


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