2018 City Preliminary Budget Starts In The Red

Sam Teresi, Jamestown mayor, discussing the 2018 executive city budget, which was released Tuesday. The mayor's proposed budget has a deficit of $946,679. The Jamestown City Council will start deliberations on the budget Monday. P-J photo by Dennis Phillips

For the second consecutive year, the Jamestown City Council will start the budget process in the red.

On Tuesday, Sam Teresi, Jamestown mayor, released his 2018 executive city budget with a deficit of $946,679. Last year, Teresi released the 2017 executive budget with a budget deficit of $878,736. Even after budget deliberations by the council during October and November, the 2017 budget deficit was still $824,926.

However, at the 11th hour, prior to the Dec. 1 deadline to pass a budget, the council was assisted by state officials who ensured the city they would help them out of the hole so they could pass a balanced budget. In April, Gov. Andrew Cuomo included $1 million in the state budget for the city as part of his Buffalo Billions Phase 2 initiative.

Will this same type of financial assistance come again from the state for the city in 2018? Teresi said if not for the $1 million allocated in the state budget, the city would be in trouble financially.

“The bottom line (is) the state of New York doesn’t want us to fail … they want us to succeed,” he said.

Teresi said they will continue to work closely with state officials during the budget process.

“Hopefully they will continue to work with us to close the gap,” Teresi said. “They want us to succeed as bad as we want to succeed.”

See Wednesday’s edition of The Post-Journal for complete coverage.