Sparks Mayor Delivers Mixed News in State of the City Address - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe News Weather, Video -

Sparks Mayor Delivers Mixed News in State of the City Address

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Sparks Mayor Geno Martini delivered his annual State of the City Address Monday morning at Sparks City Hall.

Regarding the economy, Mayor Martini brought mixed news.

He said 2013 provided some stability Sparks hasn't seen in several years, but several economic indicators have not returned to prerecession levels.

"Unemployment, housing starts and building permits and sales tax and property tax revenue are nowhere close to 2007 levels. I can say confidently, however, the city's economic indicators have stabilized. Most of our financial data shows a flat line or even increases."

Those increases have been mild to say the least.

Martini said property taxes have remained flat the past year or so and aren't expected to go up much more than 3% by 2015.

Sales taxes have shown signs of promise, rising by about 6% the past year, but Martini said these increases are simply not enough. He said Sparks continues to struggle to make sure city revenues keep up with expenses and inflation. "From a fiscal view, rising costs are the cities biggest concern right now. Payroll and health insurance costs present challenges for the short and long-term future of the city's financial picture."

Martini said the city council will convene to consider budget reductions and look for ways to increase revenue.

Written by Chris Ciarlo

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