Passage of the second reading of the city's fiscal year 2002-2003 budget enables Cumberland to retroactively account for expenditures made since last July.
The budget was delayed due to a standoff between the council and previous mayor Sara Augusta.
Friction surfaced before the November election when then-councilman Jeff Harrison asked Augusta, his political opponent, for an itemized list of city debt. A war of words between the two failed to clarify the situation and no budget was passed.
After defeating Augusta in November, Harrison blamed his predecessor for budgetary mismanagement, one reason that has been cited for recent hikes in water, sewer and garbage fees.
On Tuesday, Harrison held up a multi-page list of bounced city checks that cost the city over $25,000 in banking fees between 2000 until 2002.
"That doesn't include the money we had to pay to others," for overdrafts, said Harrison.
The city has not bounced a check since October, said Harrison.
"We've managed to stop the bleeding," he said. "We're not hemorrhaging cash anymore."
After taking office, Harrison presented the council with over $100,000 in delinquent city debt accumulated on Augusta's watch.
Harrison has accused Augusta of providing the council with inaccurate financial information and failing to properly administer city collections, allowing large unpaid service bills to accumulate.
Augusta denied being sluggish on collections, saying the city council refused to raise service rates during the 2002 election year. The council's 2000 vote lowering garbage rates damaged Cumberland's revenue stream, she added.
Passage of a budget meets one requirement for the release of over $77,000 of LGEA funds which have been withheld because the city failed to have a budget and updated audits, said Harrison.