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City of Casselberry <br />NEWS RELEASE <br /> <br /> <br />• • <br />95 Triplet Lake Drive, Casselberry, Florida 32707(407) 262-7700 Fax (407) 262-7745 <br /> <br /> <br /> <br /> <br /> <br /> <br /> <br />Statement to Citizens and Employees of the City of Casselberry <br /> <br />Casselberry, Fl. February 14, 2008 – City Manager Barbara Lipscomb on Wednesday called a <br />meeting of City employees to discuss the recent media portrayals and statements on television news <br />that have left the impression and fueled fears that the City of Casselberry is on the verge of <br />eliminating its police and fire departments due to the statewide passage of Amendment 1. That is not <br />the case. <br /> <br />At the special employee meeting Wednesday, the City Manager pointed out the facts to the <br />employees, who expressed concerns about their livelihoods. The Manager stated that the City has a <br />balanced budget for the current fiscal year which runs from October 1, 2007 through September 30, <br />2008. The Manager stated that there has been no discussion of eliminating the police and fire <br />departments by the City Commission or City administration. The Manager discussed that the City has <br />an operating reserve and is exercising careful review of expenditures. <br /> <br />During the meeting City Manager Barbara Lipscomb acknowledged that, like other city and county <br />governments, there are challenges ahead. There will be less revenue from property taxes due to the <br />new rules relating primarily to the homestead exemptions, and the City will carefully evaluate its <br />options as it does each year when the budget is prepared. <br /> <br />Presently, the City's ad-hoc Charter Review Advisory Committee is examining the language of the <br />current City Charter to make the City’s current form of Commission-Manager form of government <br />more consistent with the provisions provided for in the 8th Edition of the “Model City Charter” <br />published by the National Civic League. The Committee will make final written recommendations to <br />the City Commission by March 10, 2008. The City Commission will review the recommendations and <br />make the determination of which charter amendments, if any, will be presented on a ballot to be voted <br />on by the electorate of the City. At the January 22, 2008 meeting of the Charter Review Advisory <br />Committee, consensus was reached with regard to modernizing the Police Department and Fire <br />Department language in the City Charter. That draft recommendation proposed by the Committee <br />only suggests modernizing the existing language and consolidating the provisions for establishment of <br />a Police Department and a Fire Department within the City and their associated Chiefs into a new <br />section entitled “Public Safety”. The Committee did not recommend elimination of these two <br />departments, nor any other department. In fact, even though having specific department provisions <br />within the Charter is not consistent with the Model City Charter, the Committee, which is comprised of <br />ten (10) Casselberry citizens, recommended retaining specific provisions within the City Charter with <br />regard to the Police and Fire Departments. <br /> <br />By calling the employee meeting on Wednesday and this statement, the City Manager hopes to <br />address concerns and to communicate the message to the community and City employees that <br />Casselberry remains a good City in which to live, work, play and conduct business. The budget is <br />balanced. The City of Casselberry is looking forward to major redevelopment, which will help the tax <br />base. The City is consistently working to improve the quality of life for its citizens and always strives to <br />be a good custodian of the public’s funds and the public’s trust. <br /> <br /> <br />### <br />www.casselberry.org <br />