Eugene facing $2.5 million budget gap, cuts expected for libraries, park maintenance and recreation

      EUGENE, Ore. -- Eugene is facing a $2.5 million budget gap and for the sixth year in a row the city is making reductions to try and alleviate the general fund. City council member Chris Pryor said the public might see some noticeable cuts in this year's plan.

      "This year we were at a point where there weren't cuts we could make that wouldn't be invisible to the public," said Pryor. "We struggled with what kind of cuts to make knowing they would have an impact on the community."

      Pryor said the city initially thought it was up against a $5.3 million shortfall.

      "We saved a lot of money going into the final stages of the budget so we finally wound up only having to make 2.5 million dollars worth of cuts," the city councilor said.

      Libraries, recreation services and park maintenance are expected to see reductions. | Eugene FY 15 budget

      "It was done in a way to try to spread the cuts and costs down so that no one would be hit too hard," said Pryor.

      Monica Wilton of the Public Library Foundation is taking steps to counter the anticipated library budget cuts.

      "The city manager has recommended only one additional year for the Sheldon branch be funded so we need to find some alternative funds for that," said Wilton.

      The non-profit group is pushing for a library levy to appear on the November ballot.

      "We are all very hopeful that it will be something simple and easy for our community to digest and support," said Wilton.