UPDATE ON CITY FINANCES
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CITY FINANCE TEAM 3-20-13 LMS

At the Salmon City Councilís next meeting the Finance Team will be asking the council if it, along with city department heads, would like to schedule a work session to discuss individual department budgets and possible capital improvement projects. If the answer is yes a work session will be scheduled for late April.

The addition to Aprilís meeting agenda was part of City Finance Team Chairman Jim Bockelmanís report on the teamís February 12 meeting. Under the heading of Capital Improvements it was reported work to complete the City Hall roofing project will begin the week of March 25th. Another Capital Investment project discussed by the team was the Fulton Street sidewalk replacement and a possible cooperative agreement with the county to expand the project to include the sidewalk in front of the Courthouse. City Administrator George Ambrose supplied the team with engineering plans for the Fulton Street project and said if the Courthouse Drive sidewalk/curb and gutter idea progresses it can be bid as an alternate. Everyone agrees combining the projects would save money.

The Finance Team recommended the council take on the question of financial responsibility for sidewalk repairs. It was suggested the topic be included in upcoming discussions regarding a sidewalk repair inventory currently underway.

At the March 20 Council meeting Waidely said Lemhi County Commissioner John Jakovac has agreed a cooperative approach would be a good way to fix the Courthouse sidewalk problems. Waidely said an engineering study is the next step since it appears the sidewalk is on county property and the adjacent area lacking a curb and gutter is city owned. The council passed a motion to proceed with an engineering study not to exceed $600. The next step would be a City/County Memorandum of Understanding. The Fulton Street sidewalk project is a definite. The Courthouse sidewalk plus curb and gutter will be added if an agreement is in place and the price is right.

In a Bike Path project update it was reported that forms for the Request for Proposal (RFP) and Invitation To Bid have been submitted to the state for approval. The City Council now has to pass an official Resolution approving the City/State of Idaho Bike Path Contract agreement and the state has to approve the bidding process paperwork.

The Finance Team recommended the City Council pass an official motion to advertise the cityís Idaho Avenue property at a minimum sale price of $12,500. The council followed that advice at its March 20 meeting. The team also recommended that if the property does not sell the lots must be put on a proper weed maintenance list.

City Finance Director Amy Fealko outlined the process followed when sewer and water fees are not paid. She said that state code does not allow placing a lien on the property.

Bockelman said that Councilman Jim Baker presented the Finance Team with information on how monies are distributed from the various taxing resources that come to the city. He did the research to define the sources so that when the council makes a decision to use those monies it will be easier to see the total picture of effects. The team then discussed whether there should be an amount-limit on city funding to organizations or if funding should be on a case by case basis and, whether there should be a funding formula that takes into consideration what the county has given to the requesting organization. The discussion resulted in finding many variables to the decision making process.

Jo Schroeder of the Lemhi Education Project was a guest presenter at the Finance Team meeting. She detailed the organizationís history, future goals and what the county has contributed annually. She said she has requested $15,000 from the county and hoped the city would consider a similar amount. She was told her request would be considered in the upcoming budget process.

Administrator Ambrose brought the Streets and Alleys Fund to the Finance Teamís attention in terms of what could be done to utilize the dollars available. He said the team should look at how best to put the money to work improving the infrastructure of the community.

The next meeting of the City Finance Team will be April 9 at 11AM in the Salmon Valley Center meeting room.


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