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Finance Committee recommends budget revisions in Weirton

WEIRTON — The city’s Finance Committee is recommending two end-of-year budget revisions, following its meeting Wednesday, as well as an application for industrial access road funding from the state.

Finance Director Diana Smoljanovich noted the city had received sales tax numbers for March and April, with $203,000 coming in for March, and approximately $250,000 in April.

“We’re still going to come in lower than we expected,” she said, noting she didn’t feel revenue losses for the last part of the fiscal year would be as bad as anticipated.

Revenue from gaming establishments and building permits have been down, she noted.

She said she would like to look at making contributions into the city’s rainy day fund. The contributions would come approximately three months after the city transferred $1 million from the fund to assist with revenue concerns, although Smoljanovich said none of those funds have been needed.

“We haven’t touched any of what we took out,” Smoljanovich said.

Smoljanovich noted, as the fiscal year comes to a close, she has been looking at any unused, and unneeded remaining funds to put toward the 2020-21 fiscal budget.

“I went to each department and took out whatever I knew I could,” she said.

A revision also is proposed for the city’s coal severance budget, which contains approximately $61,500, with funds to be spent toward the purchase of a vehicle for the Sanitation Department and one vehicle for the Weirton Police Department.

The purchase would leave approximately $2,500 in the fund.

Members of the committee thanked Smoljanovich and her staff for their work in recent months, as the city has had to make cost-saving measures during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We’ve been responsible and I haven’t heard one complaint about lack of service,” Ward 3 Councilman Fred Marsh, chairman of the committee, said.

The city also is moving forward on plans to apply for a $19 million BUILD grant to assist with development in north Weirton.

“This is for the Frontier property,” Smoljanovich said of the resolution to submit an application to the West Virginia Department of Transportation for the fiscal year 2020 Industrial Access Road Program.

In other business, the committee also recommended a resolution to renew an annual maintenance and support agreement with Mountaineer Computer Systems at a cost of $6,625.

Smoljanovich said the contract was the same as in previous years, with the only change being a $50 increase in cost.

All recommendations will go before Weirton Council for approval during its meeting Monday evening.

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