The southwestern city of Pärnu will see a budge for 2022 of over €100 million.
Meelis Kukk (Pärnu Ühendab) deputy mayor of Pärnu with the responsibility for finance, said: "The daily expenses of the city of Pärnu will increase by nine million euros."
"Half of this will go to wages, the other half to operational costs. The wages are largely initiated from the teacher's minimum wage, because the teacher's minimum wage is also related to the salaries of the employees of Pärnu's educational institutions," Kukk went on.
Investments are also needed, he added, not least for the major infrastructure project in the city of around 40,000 people connected with a recent change in local government make-up, namely that of a new bridge over the Pärnu River.
"For next year, I believe that we will manage to complete the procurement of the bridge, because we have planned €15 million for the bridge, we will use loan funds," Kukk said.
"The plan has also shown that we will receive some support from the central government," added Kukk.
On tenth of the city's budget constitutes the rise on year, mainly relating to salary increases, energy price rises and other price hikes.
Public transport costs, which will rise by €1.2 million (30 percent), and heating costs which will be up 50 percent and €400,000 extra to be found to support Pärnu airport are all major entries in the new budget, he added.
Wage rises were key to keeping up with the 20-percent-plus inflation rates recently experienced.
One local school said that it needed both heating solutions and proper ventilation, which would also lead to boosted energy costs.
Pärnu recently had a change in its coalition makeup; since the aftermath of the local elections almost exactly a year ago, the city had been ruled by a union of the Center Party, the Reform Party and the Pärnu Ühendab electoral alliance. However, Center was recently switched out in favor of Isamaa and, while a motion of no-confidence in former Center MP Anton Korobeinik as city council chair passed, another motion of no-confidence tabled by opposition councilors in mayor Romek Kosenkranius (Pärnu Ühendab) failed, and he remains in office.
Editor: Andrew Whyte