Manhattan City Commission Ponders Changes

A miscommunication between the Manhattan City Commission and the Social Services Advisory Board, or SSAB, on a key 2013 budget issue prompted a special commission meeting on Tuesday night.

The commission previously approved a 5% reduction in the SSAB’s city portion of the budget to their supported agencies. 

The SSAB then advised the commission to approve the new budget which used the money gained from a cut in a youth program fund to lessen the blow to their supported agencies from the previous 5% to 4.2 %.

UFM Executive Director Linda Teener says the youth program under the knife is important to poverty stricken local families, and shouldn’t be considered in the budget plan.

 However, Commissioner Wynn Butler says he applauds the SSAB’s effort to prioritize funding to social services program, and sees it as long overdue.  Butler says he wants to reduce the number of city bolstered agencies to the core programs which should be supported by the city, and improve communciation between the commission and the SSAB.

The commission decided against the change, and upheld its original mandate of a 5% across the board cut in a  three to one vote.  Commissioner Butler cast the dissenting vote, and Commissioner John Matta abstained.

During the regular work session the commission heard presentations on how other boards operated, and reviewed possible changes to the board structures.

Manhattan Airport designers Mead and Hunt presented updated plans involving construction phases being consolidated from four phases to two phases due to suggestions from the FAA.    The changes are expected to improve efficiencies during construction.

 

 

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