Hudson -- In 2015 the city will look at ways to save money or create revenue when it reviews each department.

Overall the general fund departments expenses have gone down by $107,427 in the 2015 budget report.

"The majority of personnel are finding ways of doing things better," said City Manager Jane Howington.

Further areas that could decrease expenses and areas of concern were discussed Nov. 12 at a Council workshop.

Howington said the Information Services department is reviewing software to decide if it is being used to its full extent.

Council member Dennis Hanink wanted to know how much of an impact interns have in the engineering department.

The sidewalk design project would have cost $150,000, Howington said. The interns did it for $60,000 and $90,000 went toward sidewalk construction.

Cable TV will be a concern in the future, Howington said. The fund balance is eroding, subscriptions are decreasing and revenue is falling.

"We want a deep discussion on how to sustain HCTV," Howington said.

Because EMS is not as healthy financially as the Fire Department, the funds may be combined in a safety fund for collection but because both receive funding from Issue 3 money, a charter amendment would be necessary for the change.

"They would still be two separate departments but the accounting/financing situation would be combined," Howington said.

The city would continue to pursue ambulance fees for EMS, said Finance Director Jeff Knoblauch. Fire receives 15 percent and EMS receives 9 percent of the 1 percent income tax increase generated from Issue 3 money passed in 2004.

Utilities are being watched with water fund ramifications if there are changes to Akron or Cleveland water systems or the city decides to expand its water system, Howington said. The city is in discussions with Summit County to take over its sanitary sewer system.

The stormwater fund balance is not healthy but stormwater is a major issue that affects many residents, Howington said.

Another question for next year is whether to combine golf, recreation and parks, she said.

Council member Keith Smith said the issue will come to Council when it discusses community tennis courts.

The city is looking at savings through using brine in addition to salt on the roads in the winter time and police cruisers utilizing an idle reduction technology.

Smith said even though the city is receiving the local government fund of $425,000 it should not depend on it because it could go down and said the city could use it for capital projects until it is eliminated.


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