Everett Mayor Says City Finances In Trouble – Updated With Full Letter to Council

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Here is the link to the letter Everett May Ray Stephanson delivered to the Everett City Council last night.3.19.14 Council Address (1)

Everett Mayor Ray Stephanson

Mayor Stephanson says Everett’s finances need significant change.

The Everett City Council meeting got off to a somber start Wednesday night as Everett Mayor Ray Stephanson read a letter to council members warning there must be a significant change in the way Everett does business. Stephanson told the council that the city’s costs keep going up and it can’t operate as it currently does. Projected revenue in 2015 is at 2.3% while expenses are at 4.1% which leaves Everett with a 12 million dollar gap. “This is an unsustainable model.” said Stephanson. The Mayor noted that over the past few years the city has deferred payments to the pension fund and eliminated 20 full-time positions but revenues have not kept up with expenses. Stephanson added, “We are going to have to decide what continues, what changes and what stops all together.” Among things mentioned were fees and rates that the mayor says need to be adjusted. He promised to come back before the city council in two weeks with several choices for the city council to consider and also plans to spend the next 60-90 days reaching out to city employees, elected officials, citizens and business leaders to determine what it is that people value most. Stephanson finished his remarks by saying he wants employees who work for the City of Everett to know that layoffs are the avenue of last resort.

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