Toppenish Faces Tough Budget Dilemma - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Toppenish Faces Tough Budget Dilemma

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TOPPENISH, Wash. - Toppenish city leaders are facing a tough dilemma, while local people are speaking out about the city's debts.

The first of two public forums discussing deep budget cuts was held on Thursday night.

The entire parks and recreation department, the city's only pool and a total of three police and fire officials are on the chopping block in Toppenish.

It felt like lunch time at the Toppenish Middle School cafeteria, but instead of a meal, residents served up complaints about the possibility of rising taxes and losing essential needs to balance next year's budget.

The city is facing a shortfall of $700,000 next year.

Over 300 residents attended the forum, along with the mayor and other city officials.

With just one more community meeting to go before city officials make a decision, residents are feeling the heat.

Toppenish residents are already paying the highest water, sewage and garbage taxes in the state.

Other proposed cuts include selling the city's cemetary and other property.

Residents have one more chance to speak out about the budget cuts. That'll be Thursday at Valley View Elementary, starting at 6:30 p.m.