CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Charleston City Council will lay its tax levy for next fiscal year at its meeting Monday night at city hall.
Also on the agenda is a proposal to begin charging those who organize events like 5K runs and walks in the city a fee.
The fee would be $500 for race organizers to use an established city course. With that fee they would receive four uniformed police officers and traffic control. Use of Kanawha Boulevard would cost $1,000 per event and $1 per participant. City-sponsored events would not be charged.
Charleston has provided traffic control for the events free of cost but city officials have said overtime costs are going up.
Mayor Danny Jones told MetroNews affiliate 58WCHS recently these are tough financial times for the city, especially when it comes to B&O Tax revenues.
“This flat-lining of our B&O taxes started before the water mess,” the mayor said. “I have no idea what this quarter is going to look like but we’ll find out at the end of April and I can promise you this, it’s not going to be pretty.”
Mayor Jones says the decrease in coal production impacts Charleston.
“As the coalfields shutdown and people get run out of jobs it stretches up here. It hurts us too,” the mayor said. “So we’re going to have to do some readjusting.”
Charleston is also facing increasing pension costs for firefighters and police officers.
“It’s going to bump up our budget–a half a million, a half a million, so fees are going to have to increase. You say, ‘Well Danny we’re going to have to find another mayor,’ you can do that but it’s not going to change the numbers,” Jones said.
City Council’s finance committee meets beginning at 6:30 p.m. Monday followed by the full council meeting.