Since taking office as Mayor of Findlay Lydia Mihalik has been fighting an uphill battle with finances and after the severe storms ripped through the state almost two weeks ago the city will have to pay for the cleanup totaling $500,000. A debate has come up as to what fund the money should come from to help pay for things like fuel costs and overtime. Expenses that were not expected until the winds and rain tore up Findlay. "My contingency was we can maybe look at taking it out of the rainy day fund. Of course the auditor would rather that money be only used only after we spent every little penny out of our general fund." said Appropriations committee chair Randy Ward.
The rainy day fund did not come into existence until after the floods of 2007. There is also wording in the original ordinance that specifies that money for the storm cleanup can not be taken from the rainy day fund. Findlay Auditor Jim Staschiak said "my concern is that we protect the rainy day fund. That we do not use it until it is absolutely necessary because it is a sound fiscal policy to have that in place and the end result allowed us to maintain that fund in tact."
The appropriations committee will bring to council taking $350,000 from the general fund to help pay for storm cleanup with some of the money possibly being reimbursed by the state. Meanwhile, time is starting to run out on a final decision for a .25% income tax for the November ballot. Counsel members discussed .25% for operating costs, adding another .25% for capital improvements, and the time frame of how long the tax should remain. "We know we need the quarter. The question becomes how long do we need the quarter. There are some on council, there were quite a few tonight, that want to have it be permanent and that's an opinion. You have my opinion right now that is, and I have not been convinced otherwise, is that it needs to be temporary." said Mihalik.
Some councilors found it premature to make a final decision without seeing the 2013 budget which will be discussed in depth at a special council meeting on July 31st. The deadline for a decision and placing the tax on the November ballot is August 8th.