NARRAGANSETT – The town’s pension system is the biggest priority this budget cycle.
Town Manager Pamela Nolan said in an interview Monday that the town is working diligently to fully fund the annual required contribution, or ARC, at $5.6 million.
Nolan said fully funding the ARC would add that $5.6 million to the town’s annual budget. She said $2.5 million would come from the general fund, with additional monies coming from the town’s enterprise funds, such as the water fund, the wastewater fund and the beach fund.
“We are looking to continue to provide services as best we can and keep from raising taxes as much as possible, but we still won’t be able to fully fund the ARC,” Nolan said. “We could just raise the taxes a couple a dollars a year, if we fully funded out of taxes, but we are actively and aggressively pursuing a method not to fund it through taxation.”
Nolan said the budget is being reviewed critically in an effort to keep from significantly raising taxes.
Finance Director Laura Kenyon said the town is also bound by the state’s 4 percent tax cap.
“Our plan is to fully fund the ARC but it doesn’t look like we’re going to be able to do it in one year,” she said. “We’re looking to our future budget to see what a practical plan would be to get it fully funded.”