The city of Crawfordsville has begun workshopping its 2018 budget, and Mayor Todd Barton says employee retention is a priority.
The city will offer a 2-percent salary increase for municipal employees.
And Barton says departments such as Parks and Recreation are getting more money to improve the city’s quality of life.
“We’re going back and we’ve really assessed where we are with that tax levy and we’re comfortable in making some increases,” he says. “I’ve directed the parks department to step it up a notch. We need good, quality parks for our citizens.”
Crawfordsville Parks and Rec is proposing a budget that includes funding for new playground equipment, an increase for building maintenance and another full-time employee.
Barton says the majority of the city’s line items were expected, though he isn’t happy about a nine-percent health insurance cost increase.
Other increases include the Aviation Department for a runway expansion project at the city's airport and the Planning Department for a zoning code update. The Police Department is proposing increases in pensions, funding for gear, the K-9 unit and training costs. The Legal Department and Redevelopment Commission proposed no new changes.
The mayoral, clerk, council, street and fire department budgets will be discussed at a second meeting next Monday.