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City Council cuts spending to balance budget

By Michelle San Miguel, Multimedia Journalist - Pueblo Chieftain Bureau/Telemundo Anchor, michelle.sanmiguel@krdo.com
Published On: Nov 14 2013 12:09:53 AM CST

City Council cuts funding to balance budget

PUEBLO, Colo. -

City Council had a two-hour conversation Wednesday night it hoped it could avoid earlier this year. Council was forced to find $1.8 million in cuts to balance its budget after voters rejected Question 1A.

During Wednesday's work session, City Council cut 2014 funding for nonprofits by 5 percent, with the exception of Pueblo Animal Services. The shelter will operate next year under its 2013 budget.

City Council asked City Manager Sam Azad to consolidate and shift positions in the city, a projected $300,000 savings. Azad said it means eliminating at least one department head position.

Council also decided to postpone its search for a fire chief to save money. For now, Interim Fire Chief Dale Villers will double as the department's deputy chief.

"I think we're going to do business as usual. The citizens will still have the response," Villers said. "Everyone is just going to have to work a little bit harder and that's going on throughout the city in every department right now."

The public can comment on the budget cuts during a council meeting on Monday, Nov. 25. The city needs to adopt its 2014 budget by Dec. 1.

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