Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard today struck $32 million of the budget passed by the City-County Council, impacting every Marion County office.
Ballard’s Chief of Staff Ryan Vaughn says the cuts will come from the county option income taxes that are dedicated to the County Office such as Sheriff, Clerk, Auditor and Surveyor. The cuts won’t go into effect until January 1. They say the cuts are necessary because Democrats passed a budget that was not only unbalanced, but left the city with a large structural deficit for next budget year.
The budget is being vetoed in three areas.
- The County General tax distribution to county offices.
- The Council Democrats Character 3 Contract fund.
- The Police & Fire Recruitment Fund
The Council’s Character three budget cuts amounts to $625,000. That is usually used for contracts, however, the Democrats have included $100,000 in redistricting. Ballard Chief of Staff Ryan Vaughn says those cuts will be restored if the Democrats take out the redistricting portion.
In addition to the Council budget, Vaughn says Democrats never funded the police and fire recruitment fund so there was no reason to keep the line item.
The Mayor’s office also believes it has the authority to veto the $15 million payment in lieu of taxes (PILOT) levied against the Capital Improvement Board. Vaughn says since the PILOT is a tax the Mayor has the authority to to veto the measure.
The Council can override the Mayor’s veto, but it would take 20 votes and the Council is divided 16-13. Republican leader Mike McQuillan says his caucus will not vote to override the veto. In addition a budget must be passed by November 1.
You can hear Vaughn’s comments below. They run approximately 7 minutes.