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Council members approve budget, cut a job

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news Farmington, 55024

Farmington Minnesota P.O. Box 192 / 312 Oak St. 55024

After months of discussion and debate to iron out details of the 2011 budget and levy, Farmington City Council members were quick to take action Monday night.


The Farmington City Council took less than 10 minutes to approve the 2011 financials and eliminate the position of administrative services director Lisa Shadick.

Council members and city staff spent more than six months wrestling with the levy and budget documents, trying to find ways to get the most bang for the buck. In the end, a levy council members approved a levy of $8,565,982 for 2011, an increase of 3.42 percent over the 2010 levy.

Council members told city staff to trim $425,000 from the proposed budget, and to take some of those funds from a position. Most recently, the majority of council agreed they wanted a management position eliminated.

And so, it was.

On Monday, city administrator Peter Herlofsky brought two proposals to the council. One included the elimination of Shadick's position, the other decreased the budget without the cut. The latter option received no discussion.

Council member Christy Jo Fogarty made the motion to accept the option which, in part, eliminated Shadick's position and added $58,398 back into the budget for 2011. Herlofsky's proposal eliminated Shadick's position effective March 1. Council member Steve Wilson amended the motion, making it effective Jan. 1, 2011, and thereby increasing the amount saved to $78,400.

Shadick listened quietly as the terms of her employment was discussed. As the budget discussion was the last topic on the agenda, Shadick stayed at the staff table until the meeting's end, then left quickly without stopping to speak to anyone.

On Tuesday, Herlofsky said his recommendation to keep Shadick on staff until March 1 was a courtesy, to give her a 90-days notice. Even though there is less than a month until she leaves the city, Herlofsky said he has not figured out how to distribute the administrative service director's duties.

"I will have to sit down with the management team and assign these many duties," he said Tuesday. "It's still a work in progress."

Most of the cuts made in the 2011 budget came out of the general fund, mostly from the operations budget. The final amount of budget reductions totaled $470,841, according to finance director Teresa Walters. The debt service levy was set at $562,000. None of the budget cuts came from debt service.