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Birmingham City Commission Approves 2012-13 Budget

The updated budget includes lower-than-projected taxable values and more than $200,000 in additional revenue from a police dispatch service-sharing agreement.

The Birmingham City Commission approved the city's 2012-13 budget Monday night, a $64 million package that features a shrinking city staff and expenditures that continue to exceed revenues.

In total, Birmingham plans spend $64 million in 2012-13 and expects to bring in $61 million in revenue.

The discussion was short Monday night but there weren't many changes made to the budget, especially after commissioners discussed each line item .

"We've spent a whole lot of time on this budget," said Mayor Mark Nickita Monday night. "It's thoroughly gone through and I think we're comfortable going forward this year with a lot of good things."

City finance director Sharon Ostin noted several changes to the budget since the April hearing, including a $60,000 decline in taxable value and a $232,000 increase in revenues for the city's general fund. The spike in revenues, she said, can be attributed to the .

Where will the money be spent next year? Capital improvements make up the biggest chunk of the 2012-13 budget, totalling $7.8 million. Of that, projects include improving Birmingham's sewers, water mains, street and bridges and the Automobile Parking System.

Different from the budget presented in April, Ostin noted that fewer dollars will be spent on the city commission, and its grounds and the 's budget.

Meanwhile, additional funds will be spent on improving the Rouge River trail and paying for an exterior sign for the 's Allen House.

Also different from the original budget is the city's total levy, which will be 15.4641 mills in 2012-13, up from the originally-projected 15.4508 mills.

For more highlights on Birmingham's 2012-13 budget, visit .

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