Brian Camillier of the Plant Moran auditing firm presented the financial report at the regular meeting of the city council earlier this month.
With the lack of new revenue sources, however, he said the city will still face a deficit in the 2020 budget.
“Even if you hit the budget numbers on the head, even if you do better than the budget,” he said, the city will be short $1.5 million next year.
The city has $14.7 percent in the rainy day
He praised the city efforts to cut expenses and curb spending and noted that the decision to close the Community Center and then outsource it to a private operator was the correct move. He said the center had been losing $1 million each year.
He said while these measures were helpful, the predicted budget shortfall was the result of a decrease of $60 million in property tax revenue from 2010 to 2019.
“The city has adopted cost containment strategies, but the options to increase revenue
He said that a 45 percent decrease in tax revenue since 2008 was indicative of what the city has had to do.
“There is money for some road projects,” he said and added there was a balance in the water and sewer fund.
“You have an aging water and sewer system
Overall, Camillier had praise for the efforts of the city.
“The city has prevented state intervention with tough decisions,” he said. “Your options are limited and you need a new revenue sources. You are losing ground”
He added that the city could not absorb the loss of the revenue should the upcoming police and fire millage on the March ballot fail.
“You can't stand to lose $350,000,” Camillier said. That is the amount 1 mill of property tax generates annually in the City of Wayne.