INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) - Tuesday night, Mayor Greg Ballard's office said Democrats on the City-County Council may be responsible for lay-offs of police officers.
A Ballard spokesman, Marc Lotter, told 24-Hour News 8 up to 90 officers could be in jeopardy because of a council committee vote.
Earlier in the evening, the Administration and Finance committee rejected a key element of Ballard's budget plan for next year.
It voted down his proposal to eliminate the local homestead credit. After that vote, Council President Maggie Lewis released a statement saying: “My colleagues and I are committed to doing everything we can to avoid property tax and fee increases. As we continue to work on the 2014 spending plan, we are taking a deep dive into the Mayor's budget proposal to identify every possible cost saving option. Our goal is to continue to focus on the needs of our constituents and remain true to their priorities for the duration of the budget review process. Every option must be considered and every department's budget must be reviewed as we move forward."
Lotter, Director of Communications for Mayor Ballard, said Democrats on the council have offered no alternatives while Ballard has shown a willingness to compromise. Lotter said the Mayor agreed to eliminate the homestead credit over two years rather than in one year.
He also agreed, Lotter said, to dip in to the fiscal stability fund to add more 30 more officers to IMPD, in addition to the 50 Ballard had already proposed.
The Mayor’s Office projects the elimination of the Homestead Credit would generate $11.5 million for the Indianapolis budget.
Marilyn Pfisterer, a council Republican and a member of the committee asked: how would that money be replaced? Democrat Angela Mansfield said “there’s alternatives that are being researched and reviewed.”
Then, the committee moved on to another element of Ballard’s budget plan, the expansion of the police taxing district. The committee tabled that discussion until its next meeting, next week.
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