Mayor budget to cut $40 million starting July 1

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ)- Mayor Linda Gorton says the budget she will present to the Council and the public on April 28 will project a decrease of almost $40 million in revenue for the FY 20-21 budget year, beginning July 1.

Lexington’s General Fund budget is heavily dependent on the occupational license fee, or payroll tax, and the net profits tax on businesses.

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Since early March we have seen a sudden end to most economic activity. In that time, over 18% of our local citizens have filed for unemployment, as businesses have closed temporarily.

The impact on city revenue has been immediate, with the downturn affecting both the last quarter of the current budget year with a projected shortfall of $9 million, and the 20-21 budget year, with a projected loss of $40 million. Beyond that, losses are expected to continue for several years. “We have to reset our economy,” Gorton said.

The city consulted economic forecasting experts at the local, state and national levels in putting together her budget proposal.