Three areas of Metro government require supplemental financial appropriations to make it through the current 2011-12 fiscal year, Metro Finance Director Rich Riebeling said Tuesday.
Mayor Karl Dean’s administration plans to file resolutions in the coming weeks that would use the city’s reserves to bolster Metro’s injured-on-duty fund and the budgets of the codes department and the Nashville Farmers’ Market. All three require more dollars than originally set aside in Metro’s operating budget for the current year.
By far the largest supplemental request is $3 million for the city’s injured-on-duty fund, which is reserved for Metro workers hurt on the job.
According to Riebeling, this particular fund is operating under a $7.5 million deficit. The financial supplement, if approved by the council, would go toward a three-year plan to eliminate that deficit completely.
Asked during a budget presentation to the Metro Council how the deficit has accrued, Riebeling said many injured workers stay on the program too long and that, in general, health care costs have increased. He also suggested safety needs to be stressed to workers.
“Frankly, I think there’s been a lack of a focus on safety in some of the departments,” he said.
The codes department is seeking $200,000 additional funds. All dollars would go toward the demolition of a blighted former publishing building on 24th Avenue North in Nashville. The building burned in 2010, and neighbors have complained about the eyesore for years.
“This is a blight to the city,” Riebeling said. “It needs to come down.”
The Nashville Farmers’ Market, the subject of a recent audit that found an array of management and financing deficiencies, is in need of an additional $66,000.