BOYNTON BEACH — The city faces a budget shortfall of $10.5 million to $16 million, and there’s no easy fix, city commissioners were warned at their March 17 meeting.

“That's a reduction of 15 to 22 percent," said Barry Atwood, the city’s finance director. “I fear it’s going to be toward that higher amount, if not higher, and that’s too much money to come from one area.”

Instead, the city needs to find ways to increase its revenue while reducing expenses, he told commissioners.
Although the news was dire, commissioners say they are determined to avoid layoffs, suggesting that alternatives like four-day weeks, wage freezes and early retirement packages for employees should be considered.
Other suggestions discussed included reducing library or recreation programs, increasing the annual fire assessment for residences and selling land and property the city isn’t using.

“Sixteen million dollars is a lot of money to find in any budget,” said Boynton Beach Vice Mayor Jose Rodriguez.

- Linda Haase

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