DALLAS - On Friday, the city of Dallas announced its first round of furloughs, with nearly 500 employees in 10 departments.
More cuts could be coming, due to the city's $25 million projected loss this year.
A recent city memo showed that in the month of March, the city lost about $4 million in expected sales tax revenue.
Councilwoman Jennifer Staubach Gates chairs the finance committee, and said furloughs can’t be the only solution.
Large cities, like Dallas, rely on property tax and sales tax revenue.
That means people going to conventions, hotels, sporting events, and restaurants.
The coronavirus restrictions started to ramp up in Dallas in March.
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A city memo showed there was nearly a 10 percent loss in tax revenue because of COVID-19.
Earlier this week, the city of Dallas received more than $200 million in federal aid from the CARES Act.
But none of that money can be used to make up for budget losses, as it can only be used for COVID expenses.
Councilwoman Staubach Gates said other cuts will need to be made.
“We really have to scrub the budget and make sure we are providing essential services, and look at other type of projects or services that we offer, due to the loss. We are going to say are there ways that we can cut,” she said.
“It’s really huge and we don't know how huge, but the right word is huge,” SMU economics professor Mike Davis said. “Cities are businesses, just like any other thing. They get money in and they spend money. The city continues to spend money but the revenue stream is really drying up.”
Davis added that city leaders most likely have to find other employees to furlough or find other projects to cut to soften the blow of the financial impact from COVID-19.
Councilwoman Staubach Gates said she and her colleagues do not want to do this on the backs of taxpayers, meaning she hopes the council does not raise taxes when they set the property tax rate in August.