City of Encinal shuts down amid budget approval failure
ENCINAL, TX . (KGNS) -The City of Encinal faces an unprecedented shutdown over a budget deadlock.
It’s the first in history in a town of more than 500.
Encinal City Manager Velma Davila said it’s a scary situation for the city and its residents.
“I don’t even know, talking to our city attorney, we don’t know of another city that this has happened to,” said Davila.
After a quorum could not be reached during a regular meeting to approve the annual fiscal year budget. Only two of the five council members were present at that meeting, including the mayor.
“We couldn’t have a meeting and we couldn’t approve the budget; we could not meet the state mandate for the budget approval,” said Davila. “So as of midnight, September 30 the city cannot open. We cannot have any police presence, municipal has to be closed, sanitation pickup and the city offices will remain closed till further notice.”
Davila said if an agreement is not reached next week, the city will remain closed.
In the meantime, Davila said several officials will continue to work without pay.
“Myself, the city manager, our city consultant will continue coming in and meeting that we have pending,” said Davlia.
For those concerned about the police presence, Davila said the chief of police is committed to the public’s safety and will continue to work.
KGNS has reached out to La Salle County on what actions they will take regarding the matter.
In a statement, Judge Leodoro Martinez said the county’s sheriff, fire and medical services will remain ready and available for the citizens.
His office is also working with all necessary parties to ensure that all other municipal services continue and experience as little interruption as possible, if any.
Council will meet once again on Monday, Oct. 2 at 6 p.m. to once again try to approve the budget.
The citizens of Encinal are invited to attend.
Below is the official statement from the La Salle County Sheriff’s Office:
“Although the City of Encinal is experiencing a shutdown, I want the public to feel assured that La Salle County will continue to serve its citizens. The La Salle County Sheriff’s Department, Fire, and Emergency Medical Services will remain ready and available should any citizen of Encinal need us. If you call 911, we will be there. My office is also working with all necessary parties to ensure that all other municipal services continue and experience as little interruption as possible, if any. My hope is that this issue is resolved soon, but until that time, La Salle County is here for the citizens of Encinal.”
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