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McKENZIE (August 9) — McKenzie Mayor and Council approved the first of two readings on the 2018-19 fiscal year budget during the August 9 meeting.
Mayor Jill Holland announced the tax rate remains unchanged from the previous year. The tax rates for the tri-county city are: Carroll County and Henry County $1.0955 per $100 assessed value, and Weakley County $1.1431 per $100 assessed value.
Tax revenues are as follows: General Fund: local taxes, $2,168,510; state-shared taxes, $694,083; licenses, permits, and fines, $171,600; services and facilities $85,200; and miscellaneous, $1,302,452 for a total of $4,421,845. The Drug Fund adds another $11,800.
Expenses include: debt service, $215,450; theatre, $101,550; solid waste $399,941.
Water and Sewer Fund has revenues equal to expenses at $2,062,190; solid waste revenues and expenses are equal at $435,225; debt service revenues and expenses are equal at $240,400; and theatre fund revenues and expenses are equal at $102,000.
A breakout of the expenses is as follows: General Fund – general government, $659,232; Police Department $1,447,802; Fire Department $414,450; Street Department $1,494,675; Street Lighting $113,000; Parks Department $233,040; Public Affairs $3,700; Tourism and Economic Development, $45,700.
In the separate Water and Sewer Fund, expenses are estimated at $1,602,683.
In other business, the Council approved the issuance of bonds up to $1,050,000 for the repairs of the wastewater system in the city. For approximately 12 years, the city has been subject to a state-issued moratorium restricting the number of additional sewer connections it can make to the city’s sewer system because of the disrepair of the underground supply lines and lift stations. The funds will be provided by the United States Department Agriculture-Rural Development and bear an interest rate not to exceed 2.125 percent.
The city has made repairs to the underground piping through the years by adding an inner-liner to the existing piping. Those repairs were made through Community Development Block Grants issued in the amounts of $500,000 each occurrence. Repair crews are presently making limited repairs on the city’s sewer system, said Billy Wood, Water Department supervisor.
Billy Carter on Triangle Drive presented the lone sealed bid to purchase a city-owned land parcel on Forrest Avenue. His bid was $2,525 for the former Linda Lewis property. The city recently contracted Anderson Construction to raze the house on the property. The council accepted the offer for the unimproved land.
An invoice in the amount of $5,500 was approved for additional concrete work around the splash pad. The additional concrete eliminates the muddy condition on the perimeter of the pad.
An invoice in the amount of $4,275 was approved to replace a roadside guardrail damaged by a motorist. If the motorist has insurance, then the city will be reimbursed for the damage when the motorist struck the guardrail on Forrest Avenue.
Campbell Water Well Repair of McKenzie was paid $25,841 to repair one of the city’s water wells.
In Department Reports, Fire Chief Brian Tucker said the department had 33 calls during July.
Assistant Police Chief Richard Sawyers said he department had 1,291 calls during July.
Parks Director Mike Beasley said staff members have been preparing for soccer and the fall softball season. New benches were added at the soccer field by Kiwanis.
Street Department Director Johnny Mercer said staff members have been removing brush caused by the recent storm and performing maintenance on equipment.
Water Department Director Billy Wood said staff members have been making repairs to numerous water leaks.
Mona Batchelor and Mark Warren of the McKenzie Public Library Enrichment Foundation, Inc. made a presentation about a proposed new library and community learning commons in downtown McKenzie. (see separate news story).