[UPDATE: At the June 16, Board of Mayor and Aldermen business meeting, the FY 20-21 budget was passed.]

City Manager Chris McCartt has presented a balanced budget with no tax increase. In order to balance the FY-21 budget amid the COVID-19 pandemic, a very conservative approach was taken to ensure Kingsport could maintain consistency in service delivery to its residents.

McCartt is required to present a balanced general fund budget each year. He’s anticipating a $5.5 million loss in General Fund revenue. To balance the budget, over $3.9 million in cuts were made, along with transferring $1.6 million from the General Fund unassigned fund balance.

Budget cuts were made from programs, training, temporary labor and special programs. All unfilled vacancies for city employment are being held and there will be no step increase or cost of living adjustments for city employees.

“The budget isn’t a one-time event, but an ongoing process,” said McCartt. “We will be monitoring our revenues and expenditures, while also keeping an eye on the economy. If we see better revenue than what we’re anticipating, we will amend the FY-21 budget to reflect those positive increases.”

City staff is continuing to manage $20 million in general government capital projects, such as the pump track design for the Brickyard Park property, city park improvements at Lynn View, planetarium renovations and continuing the sustainable paving plan. These projects use money that’s been borrowed previously or use grant funding so they will continue to progress as scheduled.

Next steps include passing the FY-21 budget during the June 2 and 16 Board of Mayor and Aldermen meetings.

For more information regarding the budget presentations, please go to www.kingsporttn.gov and search ‘budget.’