• Last modified 890 days ago (April 23, 2020)


Hillsboro reviewing finances

Staff writer

Hillsboro city administrator Larry Paine told city council members Tuesday he is studying the effect that stay-at-home orders brought on by COVID-19 is having on the city’s budget.

“One of the things I was doing yesterday and today was reviewing revenues and expenses and dealing with a survey to look at the impact of what COVID-19 is doing, particularly with our budget,” Paine said.

Paine said he’s not ready to share his findings or the League of Kansas Municipalities survey results with council members, but will do so soon.

“Like everything, there will be a financial impact on our budget,” Paine said. “I think we’re going to have to figure out a way to address it.”

Mayor Lou Thurston said the only counties in the state that meet criteria for federal assistance under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act are Sedgwick and Johnson. Cities do not qualify, he said.

“We really know we need some consideration for municipalities,” Thurston said.

With a budget shortfall, the only option would be to increase taxes, and with people losing jobs and losing income, it’s not easy to push through a tax increase, Thurston said. Thurston urged council members to discuss the issue with legislators.

Paine said president Donald Trump tweeted fiscal aid to local governments will be addressed in the next CARES Act package.

“I’m not sure how much I can rely on presidential tweets at this point,” he said. “That’s going to require another legislative action to do that, and that’s why mayor Lou was saying we need to contact our legislators.”

Last modified April 23, 2020