By Perry Schaible
FAIRFIELD - City council has approved a $50 million operating budget for 2004 - a 10 percent increase over last year.
The increase will allow for the creation or expansion of city positions at a cost of $336,908 to the general fund, officials said.
The money lets the city hire a full-time probation officer for Fairfield Municipal Court, two full-time street maintenance workers for the public works department, a full-time account clerk for the finance department, a part-time administrative assistant for the fire department, sergeant for the police department and a dispatcher supervisor for its communications center.
The money, as well, will mean making the part-time clerk's post at the municipal garage into a full-time job.
"We feel these positions are needed to keep the type of services and level of services we feel are required in the city of Fairfield," said Finance Director Jim Hanson.
The city's revenues are projected at a little more than $46 million, Hanson said.
Steve Barrett, a 56-year resident, said council appears to be fiscally responsible.
"I take an intense interest in this community because I've seen a sincere effort in the last couple years to turn this (city) around," he said.
The largest increase to the budget is for employee health care costs.
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