Mayor Issues 1 Veto

Mayor Ashton Hayward has vetoed one of the amendments that the Pensacola City Council made last week to his proposed 2013 budget.

In a statement issued this afternoon, the mayor vetoed an amendment that removed $220,000 from a marketing budget and placed it into the city council budget. The administration has framed the city’s marketing efforts as vital to improving the local economy.

“Creating economic opportunities for our City remains one of my top priorities,” Hayward said in a statement today. “To do so, we need the right tools. Let’s build on the momentum of the past 20 months and tell Pensacola’s story not only to ourselves but to the rest of the world. Now is the time to continue to move our City forward, not to place obstacles that may thwart our progress. It is time to elevate our efforts.”

During last week’s budget hearing, the city council also removed $120,000 from the mayor’s professional services budget and moved it into a police training fund. The professional services budget hit came after months of talk regarding concerns over the mayor’s chief of staff—a position funded from that budget—but Councilman Larry B. Johnson, who suggested the move, has said it should not be viewed personally.

In his statement today, Hayward said he was not vetoing the $120,000 amendment, but rather “took issue” with it.

“I spoke with Police Chief Simmons concerning the budget amendment,” Hayward said in the statement. “The Chief stated that he has received all of the training dollars he requested for this fiscal year. However, I am concerned about the process in which this budget amendment came about, which I will discuss further at a later date.”