Two public hearings are scheduled before Monday’s St. Clair Board of Aldermen meeting.
The first public hearing, starting at 6:30 p.m., is regarding a progress update to a redevelopment project eastbound Interstate 44. A tax increment financing (TIF) to pay for the project was approved by the board in December 2009, according to the agenda document.
An amendment to the TIF project was approved by the board in February 2016. The redevelopment area is approximately 135 acres of land within city limits, between Highway 47 and I-44. The redevelopment area is bounded by I-44 and the I-44 North Service Road on the east and by Highway 47 on the west, and surrounds the city’s former airport property.
The second public hearing, starting at 6:45 p.m., is regarding the city’s proposed 2020 budget. The regular board meeting will start at 7 p.m. There are two ordinances for the board to consider, including an employment contract between the city and City Administrator Travis Dierker.
The second ordinance is the proposed 2020 budget. The board of aldermen, Mayor Ron Blum, Dierker and other city officials recently met to discuss next year’s proposed budget.
St. Clair has six different funds including general, water and sewer, park, street improvement, half-cent sales tax and transportation tax.
The total amount for the proposed budget amounts to $6,762,961, according to Dierker. He noted that all of the six funds are balanced.
In the general fund, revenues are proposed to exceed expenditures by $11,624. Revenues are estimated at $2,681,900 and expenditures $2,670,276.
The money for the general fund pay for municipal services, including police protection, street operations, municipal court services, building inspections, municipal code enforcement, animal control, building maintenance, community development, waste hauling and administration.
Water, Sewer Fund
Residents will not experience an increase in water and sewer rates next year, officials said. Revenues are estimated to be $2,283,000, $665,000 will come from available funds and expenditures are estimated to be $2,946,75. The revenues are proposed to exceed expenditures by $1,243.
The money for the water and sewer fund are to pay for water utility and sanitary sewer utility services to customers. These funds also are used to make payments on water and sewer capital improvements.
Major upgrades to the wastewater treatment plant will take place next year as required by the Missouri Department of Natural Resources and the Environmental Protection Agency. Due to those upgrades, the water and sewer fund appropriations are expected to be higher.
The total of cost of the wastewater treatment plant project is approximately $1,900,000, which includes the addition of a fine screen system or another strainer that will remove large pollutants found in the wastewater, and ultraviolet lighting that will disinfect the wastewater before it enters the creek.
The 2020 budget will include $1,400,000 of the project and the remaining $500,000 will be expended in 2021. Appropriations for the 2020 budget is estimated at $2,946,757. To help pay for the wastewater treatment plan project, $500,000 will be transferred from the half cent checking available funds and $165,000 will be transferred from the water and sewer checking available funds.
The proposed appropriations for the park fund are $204,065. The purpose of the park fund is to provide park services such as fireworks for Independence Day, park events, park maintenance and upgrades.
The cost for new playground equipment for Evergreen Park is budgeted for next year. The cost of playground will be approximately $35,000.
Revenues are estimated to be $172,100, $35,000 will come from available funds and expenditures are estimated to be $204,065. Revenues are estimated to exceed expenditures by $3,035.
Street Improvement Fund
The proposed appropriations for the street improvement fund are $341,863, which is a large decrease from this past year of $796,867. The decrease is due to engineering costs for Kitchell Avenue and other street improvement expenses, which were included in last year’s budget.
The purpose of this fund is to provide services to streets, sideways, roads, highways, lighting and cleaning. Revenues are estimated to exceed expenditures by $6,137.
Half-cent Sales Tax
The proposed appropriations for the half-cent sales tax fund is $300,000. The purpose of this fund is pay for any water and sewer debt. In 2020, the half-cent sales tax will help pay for the wastewater treatment plant upgrades. Revenues are estimated to exceed expenditures by $4,000.
Transportation Tax Fund
The proposed appropriations for the transportation tax fund is $300,000, compared to $643,930 from this past year. Revenues are estimated to exceed expenditures by $3,500. The purpose of this fund is provide street resurfacing and to reduce municipal debt.
A 1.5 percent pay increase is proposed for hourly city hall employees, salaried employees are proposed to remain the same and a few administrative positions will see slightly hourly wage increase.
The capital improvements budget is proposed at $1 million, which includes the water wastewater treatment upgrades, street resurfacing and repairs, the installation of cameras at city facilities, new playground equipment and park maintenance, one police vehicle purchase, the replacement of radio read meters, manhole rehabilitation and system relining, water tower inspections, painting and upgrades, city hall office supplies including a new color copier/printer, tables and chairs, in addition to small improvements to the St. Clair Senior Center.