Las Vegas Sun

July 29, 2014

Currently: 83° — Complete forecast | Log in | Create an account

North Las Vegas facing $15.5 million budget deficit

City official: Concessions from police and firefighters unions could solve problem

North Las Vegas officials meet to talk budgets

KSNV coverage of the North Las Vegas City Council meeting to draft budgets that pay for government employees such as firefighters, Nov. 16, 2011.

North Las Vegas is expecting another budget deficit for the next fiscal year, but it’s nothing concessions from police and fire unions can’t solve, according to acting finance director Al Noyola.

In a presentation to the council Wednesday night Noyola outlined the city’s current financial situation. The city will face a $15.5 million budget gap in the coming 2013 fiscal year, which is a little more than half of the previous year’s $30.3 million deficit.

But the majority of the gap, said Noyola, is the $12.3 million the city will pay when contracts with unions end next year.

Teamster furlough days, 22 days in the last 18 months, will end next year and cost the city $2.1 million. Cost-of-living adjustments for the next fiscal year, as well as the deferred 3.75 percent fire union and 4.125 percent police union cost-of-living adjustments given in concessions earlier this year, account for about $2 million. The costs also include holiday payout, uniform allowances, merit increases and overtime.

“Compensation salaries have gone up,” said Noyola, who compared salaries and benefits to fiscal year 2004. ”Today, although we are paying approximately the same dollars for labor — the compensation in benefits and salaries, we actually have 300 less (full-time employees).”

The city, which relied heavily on concessions from unions to close the current budget, is in the clear until the start of the next fiscal year. It’s recent bond restructuring plan approved last month saved the city about $4.7 million for the current 2012 fiscal year and the ending fund balance for the current fiscal year is $5.3 percent of the budget, Noyola said.

The city, which has laid off a significant portion of its staff and nearly closed recreation centers earlier this year, must make sure its finances are in order to avoid a takeover by the state taxation department.

Still, existing concessions from Teamsters, police and firefighters will expire next year and the unions may have to come to the bargaining table once again.

“If we were able to stay at the status quo, no additional payouts, no COLA, no additional merits, those things that had been deferred and now have come back, then the city is only looking at about a $3 million gap,” said Noyola.

Join the Discussion:

Check this out for a full explanation of our conversion to the LiveFyre commenting system and instructions on how to sign up for an account.

Full comments policy

Previous Discussion: 3 comments so far…

Comments are moderated by Las Vegas Sun editors. Our goal is not to limit the discussion, but rather to elevate it. Comments should be relevant and contain no abusive language. Comments that are off-topic, vulgar, profane or include personal attacks will be removed. Full comments policy. Additionally, we now display comments from trusted commenters by default. Those wishing to become a trusted commenter need to verify their identity or sign in with Facebook Connect to tie their Facebook account to their Las Vegas Sun account. For more on this change, read our story about how it works and why we did it.

Only trusted comments are displayed on this page. Untrusted comments have expired from this story.

  1. What a fine mess Mayor Buck has created. As the lone surviving council member who approved these contracts, she's all but ensured that she will be defeated, should she foolishly run for re-election in 2013. The budget deficit can no longer be closed with budget gimmicks and creative accounting. It's time for hard decisions to be made.

  2. And the new masonry obelisks being erected in the median of that whole North 5th Street/Main Street/Las Vegas Blvd fiasco the City adopted. I guess the homeless people that live in the nearby field will have nice new block structures to look at. Another GREAT investment with MY tax money.

  3. One of the big revenue generators to close NLV deficits is to give out traffic tickets for "not signaling while changing lanes".

    That's $190 if you don't fight it. The other is 7 mph over the speed limit and call it 10. Traffic tickets are a great revenue generator that pay for the new carpets, lighting and decorations of the law givers.

    It's great work if you can get it, and you can get it if you try.