Salt Lake City officials said last week that projected expenses in fiscal 2011 will exceed projected revenue by as much as $20 million.

Revenue from city permits is off by 50% since 2008, interest income is down by 90% to $5 million this year, and sales tax revenue is down by more than 19%, administrators told the City Council last week.

Budget director Gina Chamness said the city had expected the recession would hit its bottom in summer 2009, and that municipal finances would begin to rebound by now.

“Our assumptions have not proven to be correct,” she told the council. “They’ve proven to be optimistic.”

Mayor Ralph Becker in early May is scheduled to present the council with his proposed $200 million general fund budget for fiscal 2011.

David Everitt, Becker’s chief of staff, said a property tax increase could be part of the shortfall solution, as well as delays in capital projects and a pay reduction or freeze for city workers.

Everitt said Becker will ask directors of every city agency to reduce projected expenses for fiscal 2011.

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