Columbus financial problems are being uncovered with impact still to be determined

COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI) – The city of Columbus’s financial woes are still being uncovered and the impact still being determined.

That’s the message from the city council’s first work session.

Mayor Keith Gaskin says an audit the city is working to complete will show more issues than the one where the former COO Milton Rawle eventually pleaded guilty to embezzlement.

Basically, the city’s checkbook has not been correctly balanced for an undetermined amount of time.

Interim COO Mark Alexander Jr. told city leaders the 75 cent pay raise they passed for hourly employees is not in the budget.

That amount is $671,000 annually.

“The raises were not budgeted and to work it into the budget is going to require excess revenue or a reduction in spending or a combination of both. I just want everybody to understand that. It’s not from a lack of wanting, it’s just for a lack of budgeting,” said Mark Alexander Jr., Interim Columbus C.O.O.

City department heads also asked for a pay raise in the meeting.

The city council would have to vote to reverse its decision or find money in the budget.

Categories: Local News