By Bill Short
The Millington Board of Mayor and Aldermen has unanimously passed an ordinance on first reading that would amend the city budget to provide additional funding for several projects.
Board members took the action during their Feb. 13 regular monthly meeting on a motion offered by Alderman Thomas McGhee and seconded by Alderman Don Lowry.
The proposed ordinance is scheduled for a public hearing and final reading at the board’s March 13 meeting.
It states that the city needs to make several “mid-year adjustments” to its Capital Improvements Budget for the 2017 fiscal year. And it notes that several projects needed “minimal” amounts of additional funding, while some required “significant” amounts, and others will “not completely occur” in the current fiscal year.
During discussion shortly before the vote, City Finance Director John Trusty said the original budget included $1,050,000 for the Highway 51 Multimodal Project, because Millington had expected to receive a $1 million grant from the Tennessee Department of Transportation.
“We’re taking those out of the budget,” he noted, “since we did not receive that grant.”
Trusty said the city originally planned to construct a new fire station during the current fiscal year. But because of the “timing of some other things,” the appropriation for that project will be reduced by $1,080,000 this year, and those funds will be used elsewhere.
Trusty said the city had to spend an additional $224,000 to complete the “flood pump/generators/drainage basin” near the Public Works Department. But he considers those funds “well worth it,” because flooding will be eliminated.
He also acknowledged that the Wilkinsville Road drainage project cost approximately $209,000 more than originally expected. But he believes that has eliminated all the drainage issues around Millington Central High School and will provide “good drainage” for the planned new Performing Arts Center.
Trusty said Millington has submitted a bid to purchase the old Shelby County school property on Bill Knight Avenue and “consolidate” ball fields with Biloxi Fields to create “better facilities” to serve the residents.
“Assuming the Shelby County School Board honors the proposal,” he said, “we anticipate a need of about $320,000, along with the cost of demolishing part of those buildings and preparing that land for a public park.”
Based on the “timing” of the work being done at the Church Street and Navy Road intersection, Trusty said the city was able to increase its appropriation to repave the Baker Community Center parking lot. He expects the gravel, paving and restriping to cost approximately $21,000.
“Other than the gravel, none of that’s been spent yet,” he acknowledged. “But we anticipate it being spent in the next week or two.”
Assuming the weather “cooperates,” Trusty said that will be finished along with the Church and Navy project, as well as the repaving of Church from Navy north to Easley Street.
He noted that, after the Canadian National Railroad completed its part in the traffic signal “preemption” at Church Street, the city incurred some “final close-out costs” on the south end of Veterans Parkway.
Trusty also said the state funded “its 80 percent” of the cost of a “left-turn modification” to the intersection of Navy Road and the parkway, as well as modifications to the parkway’s storm water grates.
And he noted that the Millington Industrial Development Board has agreed to reimburse the city for the utility poles that were installed on the parkway when it was constructed.
“They have made the first $50,000 payment on that,” he said, “which was not anticipated in the budget. So, that’s additional revenue.”