Oro Valley Town Manager David Andrews has completed the proposed 2010 budget.

The spending plan tops $120 million, a more than 40 percent decrease from last year’s $203 million budget.

Much of the decline resulted from the failed Naranja Town Site park bond election that voters rejected last November.

The park plan would have contributed nearly $50 million to this year's plan.

The proposed layoff of 31 town employees accounts for another $2 million in savings.

"The request for layoffs is unprecedented in the history of the town," Andrews said.

Andrews said the decision to recommend the layoffs was difficult not only on him, but for the affected employees.

"It’s been really difficult going through this," Andrews said, "But these adjustments need to made in the financial interest of the town."

To avoid a similar deficit in the 2010 fiscal year, which begins July 1, Andrews has recommended the layoffs along with numerous other cutbacks.

Councilman Al Kunisch at a council meeting Monday asked Andrews whether he had asked town department heads to weigh in on proposed cuts.

"The short answer is 'yes,'" Andrews said. "Of course they have."

In the police department’s case, the town manager said, "the chief came back and recommended (cutting) the Community Action Team."

Six officers make up the team, a group that combats drugs and violent crimes, according to town officials.

Those officers likely would take on standard beat work, while six officers with less seniority would face layoff.

In addition to the proposed police layoffs, 30 percent of cuts — nine positions — come from a consolidation of town departments.

Andrews's layoff plan calls for combining planning and zoning, building safety, engineering and other departments responsible for development plan reviews, into one department.

The new department would likely be called "development services."

Several years ago, the town decided to break up a similar department into the individual units that operate today.

Andrews said the need to combine the departments under one banner stemmed from a decline in commercial and residential development and because the town has nearly reached complete build out.

Recent budget cuts have helped stave off a more than $5 million deficit.

Significant spending cutbacks and the council’s decision to renew the 2-percent utility tax helped close the gap.

The proposed 2010 budget has more than $900,000 worth of cuts from the town's general fund, the portion of the budget that included personnel and other recurring expenses.

Other savings result from postponing building projects like the proposed municipal operations center in Rancho Vistoso and reductions in roadwork expenses.

Also helping the bottom line, the town recently received word that the federal government would provide $3 million for the road projects from the economic stimulus package.

Revenue picture

Town Manager David Andrews' 2010 budget shows a $600,000 increase in revenue, despite stagnant sales tax and lower bed-tax receipts. Here's a sample of estimated income:

Sales tax

2009 $13.1 million

2010 $13.3 million

Bed tax

2009 $1.2 million

2010 $563,000

Impact fees

2009 $7.4 million

2010 $12.1 million

Total revenue*

2009 $27.9 million

2010 $28.4 million

*Includes other revenue sources.

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