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Local Option Tax (LOT) generated revenues for July were $15,031. According to a report to the Salmon City Councilís September 5 meeting, this past July exceeded July 2011 revenues by $1,916.

City Councilman and LOT Commission Chairman Jim Bockelman told the council there were three funding requests heard at the commissionís August 28 meeting.

He said the Golf Association is requesting $8,500 for improvements to the golf course which is on property owned by the city and leased to the association. The needed improvements listed included flag reflectors at a cost of $200, a $2,500 low volume irrigation pump and $5,800 for tee box improvements.

Bockelman said that Gary Goodman presented the commission with an overview of the golf associationís financial status, the workings of the golf course and the tournaments that bring visiting golfers to the Salmon area. Goodman said the association feels funding to make the mentioned improvements possible will create savings in maintenance and enhance the golfing experience at the Salmon Valley Golf Course for all golfers. He said the association feels the improvements will equate to more golfers coming to Salmon.

The commission recommended approval of the request to the City Council and advised the association to explore additional funding for improvements through grant avenues such as the CHC Foundation of Idaho Falls. Bockelman said the CHC has been very helpful to the Hockey Association and is encouraged by the fund raising events and efforts being put forth by the golf association.

When the time came for a vote the City Council followed the LOT Commission recommendation and approved the $8,500 golf association request.

Bockelman said there were two funding requests from City Swimming Pool Assistant Manager Jamie Bockelman. The projects had been previously funded and, due to delays, they cost more than originally estimated. A request for $780 was to reimburse the difference between what LOT initially provided for rebuilding the pool facilityís sidewalk and what it turned out costing. Bockelman said the original LOT funding for the project was based on an estimate and an unexpected tree root problem necessitated re-routing the walk. A $500 request was made to pay for needed repairs to the lifeguard watchtower chairs. Both projects have been completed and the bills paid. The extra funds for the sidewalk were being requested to cover the cost overruns which were paid from the poolís budget.

The ordinance initiating the LOT funding alternative passed by voters, specifically designated the swimming pool as a priority recipient of funds for maintenance and improvements

The City Council decided to delay a decision on the $780 request until more details on the accepted bid and cost override authorization can be learned. The council approved the $500 request for lifeguard chair repairs.

There is a reimbursement segment in the LOT funding request process and Bockelman said the commission feels all members should receive copies of the documentation to stay apprised of how and when the funds are spent. He said a motion was made to that effect and was approved.

Other business before the commission involved beginning a discussion of recommended directions and priorities for the upcoming fiscal year and heard a Heritage Days report from Sacajawea Center Director Judy Barkley.

The next Local Option Tax meeting will take place in the Salmon Valley meeting room on September 25th at 5:30PM. Public attendance is invited.
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