NEWCASTLE lord mayor Jeff McCloy questioned whether "alarm bells" were ringing for council staff, after the organisation released its budget results for the second quarter of 2012-13.
Last Tuesday, the council heard the budget had been blown out of proportion - the report outlining the organisation was on track for a $16.6 million deficit for the financial year.
Despite previous measures taken, such as the freeze on staff and cutting casuals, which resulted in a $2.17 million salary reduction, the council heard there would be ongoing budget issues.
Last week, general manager Phil Pearce outlined a re-commitment to the short-term, three-part solution for the council to face its financial woes.
This follows his announcement last October to introduce a number of emergency steps to address the then-growing deficit.
However, these measures were not enough to change the financial outcome, as other sections of the organisation had not cut costs.
The financial performance report showed underperforming sectors including: waste disposal, on-street and off-street parking, parental leave and workers compensation.
The Summerhill Waste Management Centre has projected its income to be down by $2.35 million.
This figure was of particular concern to ward three Councillor Nuatali Nelmes, who led discussion with the question, 'has this [Summerhill] ever made a profit before?"
City works delayed by budget cuts
THE Newcastle City Council quarterly performance document also highlighted a number of key road projects which would be deferred until the next council budget.
Projects such as the rehabilitation of Watt and Church streets, as well as other road works planned for Newcastle East, Adamstown, New Lambton, Cooks Hill and Hamilton have been postponed in order to complete ‘‘higher priority’’ plans, due to ‘‘funding constraints for additional works’’.
The budget report shows the council lacks money or staff to complete other maintenance jobs around the city, such as mowing and pothole patching.