Last night, a committee of the whole meeting and a special Board of Trustees meeting were held at South Jacksonville Village Hall to finalize a few aspects of the Fiscal Year 2018-2019 budget.
Three main additions to the budget were tallied last night to finish all necessary calculations for the upcoming year. Village Treasurer Tiffanee Peters announced these changes as the motion to approve the budget was being carried.
“7,000 for paint and 5,000 dollars for a water analysis study to the Water budget, 935,000 dollars for the roadworks budget out of TIF, and the tourism contractual destination line item will be 300 thousand instead of 150,000.”
The first additions are to the Water Department’s budget. During the committee of the whole meeting, Municipal Utility Superintendent John Green assured the Board that the Water budget would be able to fund necessary painting for the utility shed near Godfrey Park. Afterwards, Green also listed the other two projects that he knew needed to be addressed.
“I need an additional five thousand dollars in my budget to cover a water rate analysis study. We also talked about overlaying the parking lot out here at Village Hall. It would all be added into the TIF funds for the roads project outside of South School, and we either need to repave the parking lot or seal it, and if we seal it it’s only going to last a couple more years.”
That second item Green mentioned, the paving of the Village Hall parking lot, actually correlates to the second item mentioned by Peters. 935,000 dollars seems like a lot of money, but 900,000 was already in the roads budget as part of the South School renovations. That means only 35,000 dollars was added from tax increment financing to pave the parking lot.
The final item mentioned by Peters is that of the parks department in regards to destination sites. Though Dewey Park by Village Hall isn’t a destination site yet, the board budgeted $150,000 to brainstorm development options to make the park a destination site so that tourism funds can be legally used for renovations. During the committee of the whole meeting, the Board decided to bid out all of the scheduled renovations to Godfrey Park and budgeted an additional $150,000. Village President Harry Jennings details this decision.
“We put in 150,000 for redoing Dewey Park previously. Godfrey Park is already a destination site, but we would need to make Dewey Park a destination site in order to use the tourism dollars. It’s currently just swings and slides and a large tennis court, and it needs to be more than that to be considered a destination site. There are other places, dog park and skate parks that qualify. We don’t want to duplicate anything, so we’re trying to come up with a new idea, and that just takes some brainstorming.”
Now that the budget is approved, Peters will finalize all the paperwork. A full budget itemization will be available at the village’s website, southjacksonville.org, upon completion.