Still, Finance Commissioner Kenneth Ivins, Accounts Commissioner John Franck and Public Safety Commissioner Ron Kim voted in the negative, saying they would not support a budget without some funding for a public safety building.
"If the RFPs don't come back properly, we're going to have to put a number in anyways," said Ivins.
The vote launched a round of discussion in which the council identified ways to keep the project budget reasonable. Though many of the numbers were acknowledged as estimates, it was important to submit a plan to Finance Commissioner Ivins before Sept. 15, as per the city's charter.
It was decided to cut the $1.3 million proposed development of waterfront property off of Crescent Avenue to $700,000. That should still be enough to give the public safe access to the water within 2009.
Even though a new station will cost far more than $3 million, it will not be spent all at once. By adding money now, the city hopes to stay ahead of the curve. The capital programs will be incorporated into the city's 2009 capital budget. It can also be revised by a four-fifths vote of the council before it must be adopted on Nov. 30.
Ivins praised the council's relatively calm deliberations.
"I think this is the way the public wants us to work," he said, before warning that his department will have to make some changes to general fund expenditures to accommodate the higher numbers.
"We're going to have to tighten our belts this coming year," he said.""