City of Topeka to Postpone Consideration of Pay Reduction for All City of Topeka Staff

The City of Topeka will postpone a 3% pay reduction for all City of Topeka Staff and reconsider a potential pay reduction in June when actual sales tax receipts for March and April will be available. After a review of the sales tax receipts along with other revenue collections to date, in consultation with the Governing Body, a determination will be made as to whether salary reductions or other decisions that may impact personnel, will need to be implemented in order to balance the budget by the end of the year. The earliest implementation of salary reductions would be reflected in the July 3rd paycheck. The Governing Body and City Manager will be taking a 6% salary reduction starting with the pay period that begins on May 2nd

Governing Body members have expressed interest in City Manager Trout exploring the use of additional general fund cash reserves to cover expected savings that would have been achieved from the salary reductions being implemented sooner. Using general fund cash reserves for the next two months will provide the City with the time needed to review actual receipts related to sales tax revenue to guide the estimates of projected losses prior to adjusting personnel cost. Once the sales tax revenue information is reviewed, the city will determine the budgetary impact from the first four months of the year. 

The City Manager will continue to explore potential savings in personnel costs through discussions with union leadership, City administration, and the Governing Body. No across the board wage reductions will be effective in the next sixty days. 

“I am looking at all possible options to reduce spending and offset revenue losses,” said City Manager Brent Trout. “I am continuing to work with the Governing Body and staff to find the best way to balance the budget while keeping the impact on services and staff at a minimum.” 

It is still expected that the City of Topeka will experience a loss in revenue from the recent stay at home orders and appropriate steps are being taken to prepare for that loss. City staff has identified approximately $3.2 million of operational changes in the General Fund operating budget that will be implemented for 2020. In addition, it is anticipated that a minimum of $2 million in reserves will be used to offset the anticipated reduction in revenues. Similar changes will also be evaluated and implemented to the utility and enterprise funds.