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April 23, 2013

Wichita City Council to discuss new library, 2014 budget

The Wichita City Council will get its first look Tuesday morning at City Manager Robert Layton's 2014 draft budget, and will revive the idea of a new central downtown library.

The Wichita City Council will get its first look Tuesday morning at City Manager Robert Layton's 2014 draft budget, and will revive the idea of a new central downtown library.

Both issues are slated for workshops Tuesday after the regular City Council meeting. Both workshops are informational, and neither is slated for council action.

The budget, saddled with a $6.5 million deficit when it was originally unveiled last summer as part of Layton's two-year budgeting plan, was balanced last summer by service cuts and some job freezes.

However, the city has resumed filling some positions "strategically," Layton has said, in the face of workload issues. In recent weeks, the city has offered between 20 and 30 jobs on its website, wichita.gov.

The new library proposal has been scaled down and delayed in the past year, originally planned at about $45 million and now cut to less than $30 million. That action was taken by the council last year to address mounting debt in the city's 10-year capital improvements plan.

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