Asheville leaders consider cuts to close $5M budget gap - FOX Carolina 21

Asheville leaders consider cuts to close $5M budget gap

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ASHEVILLE, NC (FOX Carolina) -

Asheville city leaders met Wednesday night to consider massive cuts to close a $5 million gap in the budget.

A few of the options discussed include closing the Western North Carolina Nature Center, a fire station, city pools and cutting youth and adult athletics programs.

Council members have already raised fees on water use, trash pickup and parking fees, hoping to make up the money.

Asheville Mayor Terry Bellamy said the city got to this point because of state lawmakers.

"The state is proposing to take the city of Asheville's water system, and that's $1.9 million impact on our budget," Bellamy said. "Looking at the extraterritorial jurisdiction that we have, that's an additional cost of $100,000."

Bellamy said the state is also considering taking away the city's privileged license fees that the coffers receive from businesses, which adds up to another $200,000.

Asheville must pass a budget by June 30.

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