Emanuel Administration Projects City's Lowest Budget Deficit Since 2008

Craig Dellimore
August 01, 2018 - 7:14 am
Rahm Emanuel

Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel during the All-Star mini-pitch dedication. (Patrick Gorski-USA TODAY Sports)

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CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- The Emanuel Administration is projecting the city’s lowest budget deficit since 2008. It is good news, but those numbers don’t tell the entire story.

Back in 2012 Chicago’s structural deficit was $650-million and its pension funds were in trouble. The city’s latest analysis shows a shortfall of $98-million, the eighth straight year of reductions.

But, Budget Director Samantha Fields acknowledges, there are some numbers that aren’t in this mix yet. Fields admits, the numbers do not include the costs of the police, fire and AFSCME contracts—among others—because they are still being negotiated.

"You're right, we have, what is not reflected in here are some of our salary increases that you'll see from some of our collective bargaining agreements. And that is because we have not settled them as of yet," she said.

Chief Financial Officer Carole Brown would not estimate how much things like that could add to the shortfall. She focuses on the positive. The city is no longer budgeting in a crisis.