FLATWOODS – The city is in good financial shape and improvements are on schedule, Mayor Ron Fields told the Flatwoods City Council at its monthly meeting.

Fields gave his annual report before the council voted on the budget for the new fiscal year which passed unanimously. He explained that the majority of the city's income is from property taxes and that the total revenues anticipated to start the new year is $2,289,296.16.

The new budget includes $15,000 for blighted, abandoned and dilapidated property. One on North Fourth Street is ready to be taken down and three other properties are in litigation.

The council was told that the new electronic water meter change program is proceeding well with $86,000 budgeted for new meters in the coming year. They also learned that the cost of water from Russell is increasing, raising the cost of water about $4,000 a month.

The sewer department is slated to receive a newer truck with a small crane while the fire department is in the final stages of completing its training center behind the department on Powell Lane. Improvements to the park on Park Street, by the city pool, are underway and include a handicap-accessible shelter house and play equipment.

Also presented to the council were updates on sewer projects and loan payments. Fields told the council all employees will receive a 50-cent raise and the city's workers comprehensive insurance has dropped significantly, from $68,000 to $28,000. Fields credits training and safe work habits by employees for the decrease.

Finally, he told council that the city completed last year's budget about $35,000 in the black.

In other action, the council approved participation in the municipal road aid cooperative program agreement, accepted a resolution for the 2020 census and appointed William Gilbert as the city's third representative to the Eastern Greenup County Emergency Medical Services Board.

Council members also agreed to pay the Kentucky League of Cities to update its personnel policies and procedures plan. The cost will be about $3,000 and will bring the city's plan up to date with state requirements.