City officials, department heads explore 2013-14 CIP

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Members of the Spencer City Council sat down with Spencer City Manager Bob Fagen and the city's department heads to take a look at the proposed 2013-14 Capital Improvement Projects before beginning the actual budget process.

"There are not a lot of really huge things coming up," Fagen said.

"Our whole goal is to make sure our operations budget is not in competition with our capital improvement budget," Fagen continued. "The CIP budget is really the only way these dollars can be used."

The city's proposed CIP list comes with a price tag of $3.081 million; money that Fagen said comes from funding -- such as sales tax -- which is available without impacting the operations dollars.

"It's been my goal since I've been here to have a 25 percent reserve fund -- or three months -- because you never know what's going to happen," Fagen said. "We put a mechanism in place to use sales tax proceeds as a ballot layaway. Most cities would love to have what we have here."

Major proposed expenses include more than $500,000 in street work with overlays on East 18th Street, Fifth Street SE, Sixth Avenue East, East Eighth Street and Second Avenue West.

The city is planning on the addition of 4,000 containers in conjunction with Spencer's move to its automated collection of recycling and solid waste at an expense of $250,000. A new automated collection truck will need to be purchased at a cost of $250,000 as well.

Work on taxiway lighting at the Spencer Municipal Airport will cost $266,000.

Two new disposal sells at Northern Plains Regional Landfill will cost the city $555,000.

"Every three years, the city opens a landfill cell at a projected cost in excess of $550,000," Fagen said, noting that the cost has been adjusted to $600,000 for the cell scheduled for 2017.

"Once every five years, we're going to have to purchase a major piece of equipment," Fagen said of the Spencer Fire Department capital purchase.

In 2013/14, the fire department is scheduled to replace the 1987 pumper truck at an expected expense of more than $380,000.

The Parks and Recreation Department is set to perform $117,000 in work on the North School Trail, and $120,000 on sidewalk replacement in Westview. The parks budget also includes renovation of tennis courts, at an expense of $35,000, and the installation of an ADA lift at the Spencer Family Aquatic Center.

Spencer's police CIP includes the department's move to the current SMU building at a cost of $200,000, vehicle replacement projected to cost $50,000, and in-car camera systems at $45,000.

Manhole rehabilitation tops the Sanitary Sewer CIP, at an estimated cost of $25,000.

Fagen said more detailed explanation for each project will be conducted during the budget process.

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