Selma City Council set to discuss bond issue at 5 p.m. work session Thursday

Published 9:03 pm Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Selma City Council members will meet today to discuss a bond issue proposed by Mayor George Evans.

Evans has released a list of items submitted by city department heads. The list totals $10,137,061.13. Council members are expected to begin going down the list today at 5 p.m. at City Hall in the council chambers.

Councilman the Rev. Dr. Cecil Williamson said he’ll oppose the bond issue if the items on the ballot aren’t listed one by one.

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“I will tell you not I will support it if you don’t try to pass everything with one vote,” he said. “That’s what was needed last year. We don’t need that slippery slope again.”

Williamson was referring to a $12.5 million bond issue that failed in early 2008. The bond issue listed money amounts and departments, but did not list individual projects or items and received much criticism for the approach.

Mayor George Evans seems to support having all the items on one ballot with one vote. But, said the mayor, he expects all the items to be essential ones.

“I don’t want to see anything here that’s on a wish list, but things that are essential to the progress of the city and our citizens will vote for the whole package,” he said.

Council President Dr. Geraldine Allen supports a bond issue and wants to ensure the council has ample time and opportunity to discuss the 40-50 items on the wish list. She also pointed out the recent city audit which recommended a bond issue to spend the money in the bond account.

“The auditors have pointed out there is money the city can use,” she said, “but we have to have that bond.”

Several weeks ago, auditors told the council if it wished to go for a bond issue in the city, now would be the time. The city has a 1999 bond account with revenues of $1.2 million. Debt service expenditures were $299,000, leaving a balance of $3.8 million.

The bond issue wish list includes:

Public Works: Push cable video system, $6,875; Vermeer SC802 stump cutter, $41,126; John Deere 410J backhoe loader, $97,125.21; Hitachi mini excavator, $51,376.16; trailer, $12,350.21; Elgin Whirlwind sweeper, $190,000; Freightliner M2 unit with shuttle, loader, trash trailer, $538,255; seven-yard dump truck, $57,636; overhead loader, $325,000; automated garbage truck, $188,426; public works building security front door, $1,015; fleet maintenance building roof repairs, $8,000; replace garage door, $2,850; fence, $2,170.

Recreation: power rake, $12,000; renovation of stadium, $598,912; lighting at stadium, $214,000; sound system at Bloch Park, Memorial Stadium and tennis courts, $50,000; resurfacing track, $100,000; lighting at Bloch Park Baseball Field, $135,500; tennis clubhouse, $145,000; resurfacing tennis courts, $36,000; Riverfront development amphitheater/riverwalk, $381,007; Riverfront Walk Trail Match, $118,993; City Marina dock repairs and improvements, $25,000.

Police Department: complete building maintenance, $396,781; upgrade/replace patrol division fleet, $841,758; upgrade/replace patrol division equipment, $574,961.55; generator, $90,000; information technology public safety system/hardware and server upgrade, $249,000; public safety camera system installed, $400,000; business application computer system/hardware technical infrastructure, $357,000; wireless infrastructure interior/exterior, $2,100,000.

Public buildings: City Hall remodel of tax and license office, cost pending; replace heating and cooling system, cost pending; repair rotten wood and paint building exterior, cost pending; new back door, $8,000; convention center roof replacement, $50,000; handicap ramp, $15,000; new flooring, cost pending; repair wood and paint exterior, cost pending; doors, $8,000; replace alarm system, $4,000; new chairs, cost pending; painting and repairs (1/2 of total cost of $90,000), $45,000; Vaughan Smitherman Museum large fountain, sprinkler system and outdoor lamp repairs/replacement, $7,500; HVAC, $20,000; Performing Arts Center window repairs, $5,000; awning and front repairs, $10,000; Animal Shelter roof repairs, $56,000; repair kennel gates, $1,460; repair chain fencing, cost pending; Dallas Academy repair and replace interior and exterior, cost pending; Good Samaritan Building repair roof, $28,284; White Force Cottage exterior repairs, cost pending.

Cemetery Department: backhoe, $50,000; pickup trucks (2), $40,000; repair coupling, curbs and historical monuments, $60,000; zero turn mowers (2), $15,000.

Inert Landfill: pickup truck (compact) $20,000

Selma Public Library: exterior work, $87,400; interior work, $127,300; structural work, exterior, columns, $19,000; structural work, exterior, gutters, $25,000

Fire Department: chief’s office, $7,500; Station 2, $180,000; Station 3, $127,000; Station 4, $78,000; Station 5, $30,000; training center, $25,000.

Code Enforcement Department: repairs first floor, $225,000; repairs second floor, $135,000; repair left side two windows and sealing of outside walls, $100,000; maintenance and repairs on air conditioning and heating system, $20,000

Public Transportation: trolley, $150,000

Finance Department: SUITE check writing software, $9,500.