The Mayor’s State of the City: Good Marks in Money and Crime
Much like the return of students to class, fall marks the psychological beginning of the new year for Coral Gables. That’s because Oct. 1 marks the beginning of a new fiscal year for the city, and includes both a new city budget and the mayor’s annual address to the Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce on what to applaud from the previous year and what to hope for in the coming year.
In terms of the budget, this year’s $196.7 million is a net decrease of $50.3 million, or 20.4 percent, from last year. Most of that savings comes from a $53 million decrease in capital improvement projects.
In terms of the operating expenses for ongoing services, those climbed just .3 percent, or $458,860, the smallest increase in years. While salaries grew by $1.3 million, and pensions by $1.2 million, these were offset by less money spent on debt, employee payouts, fleet equipment, and worker’s comp.
“What I want for the coming year,” Mayor Raul Valdes-Fauli told Coral Gables magazine, “is to achieve continuity. We are doing great financially and in terms of crime. I want to emphasize the quality of life, the cultural opportunities, and security in schools. I want to make it a more alive city!”