Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

St. Petersburg's expected deficit shrinking; now projected at $1.5 million this year

ST. PETERSBURG — The city's latest projections show an expected deficit in this year's budget is shrinking.

In February, officials predicted the city would end its fiscal year in September with a $2.3 million shortfall. That number is now about $1.5 million, according to a memo Budget Director Tom Greene recently submitted to City Council.

He attributed the gain to departments holding the line on expenses, even as revenues have remained mostly flat.

"These projected reductions are attributable to salary savings from open positions in various departments," Greene wrote. "The lower than budgeted fuel cost has also provided benefit."

Green will give the council's budget committee a summary of the city's second quarter performance this morning at City Hall. The meeting also will include an update on city finances and investments.

Officials now expect the city to take in $211.5 million in general fund revenue this fiscal year and have $212.9 million in expenses.

"These quarterly projections are really just snapshots. We do expect and are hopeful that the trend will continue," Mayor Rick Kriseman said Wednesday. "We feel pretty good we're in a good place."

Kriseman, who is in the process of creating next year's budget, has told staff he wants them to continue to find savings this year. Three days after taking office, he met with top administrators and asked every department to find at least 1 percent in savings.

Last month, he launched a contest to motivate them. The top three departments that save the most by September's end will be treated to a picnic at a city park, Kriseman said.

"Picture me in a chef's hat manning the grill, or the Deputy Mayor manning the drink table and other members of the Mayor's office serving you and your team lunch," he wrote in a memo.

To make it fair, departments will be divided into three categories: small (less than 50 full time employees), medium (50 to 100 full time employees) and large (100 or more full timers).

Kriseman said he hasn't heard of any of the departments' money-saving ideas yet. He also hasn't decided what he's going to serve them. "I make a wicked Caesar salad," he joked

Kameel Stanley can be reached at, (727) 893-8643 or on Twitter @cornandpotatoes.

St. Petersburg's expected deficit shrinking; now projected at $1.5 million this year 05/07/14 [Last modified: Wednesday, May 7, 2014 11:39pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. What to watch this weekend: 'Star Trek: Discovery,' 'DuckTales' returns


    Boldly go: Star Trek: Discovery

    It's been more than 50 years since the original Star Trek premiered, but the new CBS series is set 10 years before Kirk and Spock. Star Trek: Discovery explores the war between the Federation and the Klingons while following the USS Discovery, an exploratory …

    Sonequa Martin-Green in Star Trek: Discovery on CBS.
  2. First lady Melania Trump heads to White House garden for planting, harvesting


    WASHINGTON — Melania Trump is heading out to the White House garden to do some planting and harvesting.

    First lady Melania Trump picks peppers with a girl with the Boys and Girls Club of Washington in the White House Kitchen Garden on the South Lawn of the White House, Friday, Sept. 22, 2017, in Washington. [Andrew Harnik | Associated Press]
  3. New aerial photos show Puerto Rico devastation; at least 6 dead in Hurricane Maria aftermath


    SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO — Early aerial images of the devastation wrought by Hurricane Maria here show waterlogged neighborhoods, roofs peeled off homes and shopping centers, and once-lush landscape …

    Aerial photo of flooding in the costal town of Loiza, on the north shore of Puerto Rico. [Photo by Dennis M. Rivera Pichardo for the Washington Post]
  4. State rolls out food assistance program for residents affected by Hurricane Irma


    Help is on the way for Florida residents struggling to put food on the table after Hurricane Irma.

    The Salvation Army Mobile Food Pantry hlped out with free food in Largo after Hurricane Irma. Now, the federal government is expanding access to food for people affected by the storm. [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD  |  Times]
  5. Kriseman proclaims Buy Local week in St. Pete to quicken storm recovery


    Mayor Rick Kriseman has proclaimed next week to be "'Burg Buy Local Week" in an appeal to residents to help small businesses struggling to recover from Hurricane Irma.

    Mayor Rick Kriseman wants St. Pete residents to help small businesses recover from Hurricane Irma