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Wausau faces large '15 budget deficit

Wausau city hall
Wausau city hall

WAUSAU, Wis (WSAU)  Wausau city officials are taking steps now to deal with an estimated $750,000 budget shortfall next year. The unusually large deficit was first reported by the Wausau Daily Herald based on an internal memo from Finance Director MaryAnn Groat.

The deficit is three-times as large as it was at the beginning of the current budget cycle.

One reason for the larger shortfall is the Wausau Center Mall. The city is proposing $755,000 worth of aid over the next five years. The city is also facing personnel and benefits increases for city employees.

State law puts a cap on how much property taxes can be raised next year -- no more than $13 for a typical $100,000 home. The city is asking department heads to limit spending now so that left-over money can be carried over to next year. And the city's finance committee will begin budget reviews earlier than usual to discuss possible cuts and cost-savings.