The City of Buffalo has currently a $35 million year-to-date budget deficit and could run out of money by next week, according to a report released Tuesday to the Buffalo Common Council and Mayor Brown.
City Comptroller Barbara Miller-Williams provided a year-to-date budget report for the city, which has been submitted to the Common Council and Mayor, revealing a reduction in general revenues and sales tax receipts that City Comptroller attributed to the Covid-19 pandemic. Although, filings in March with the Buffalo Common Council and Mayor indicated a budget deficit of over $ 13 million dollars, which indicates, the deficit was a problem long before COVID 19.
“We are confronting a challenging time as a city. However the Department of Audit and Control continues to make it a priority to report and strengthen the City of Buffalo’s financial operations,” said City Comptroller.
The report noted that as of April 22, year-to-date revenues were $341 million, while year-to-date expenses for the city were $376.4 million, a deficit of $35.4 million and could increase further.
The city’s Comptroller, further noted that the city’s cash funds are projected to land in the negative by the end of the month and that cash disbursements are trending lower than projected. However, the city and the Buffalo Board of Education are still expected to receive their state aid, which should result in a positive combined cash flow to the city through June.
Governor Andrew Cuomo has indicated that the State faces a $ 6 billion dollars budget deficit that could grow to $10 to $15 Billions dollars depending on COVID 19 and that local governments should expect reductions in state aid. Likewise, Governor Andrew Cuomo, almost jokingly, said the state is so broke it barely has two nickels to rub together.
With nine weeks of revenues and expenses still remaining to be recorded in the 2020 fiscal year, Miller-Williams said her office and the Department of Audit and Control Personnel will continue to collaborate with their partners in government during the current fiscally challenging times.
The City of Buffalo is expected to have debt payments of $168,954,495.65 by 2030 to pay for City projects and operations from borrowed funds.