By JOY BROWN
Findlay City Council appropriated $3.2 million this week for capital improvement projects and equipment.
But that’s not the total of this year’s planned capital spending.
The sum includes funding for equipment and construction projects, based on estimates, plus seed money for other projects that officials proposed in January, Service-Safety Director Paul Schmelzer said.
The administration’s plan is to get things started, and return to council for more money once bids and costs are more solidified.
Start-up funding will primarily go toward planning and engineering work to ready projects that involve physical labor.
For instance, City Council agreed to spend $20,000 at first for an updated plan to clean Dalzell Ditch. Even though the ditch is located in the city, it is under Hancock County’s jurisdiction. City administrators would like to spend about $300,000 toward the cleaning project, to help lessen or eliminate assessments to nearby landowners.
The administrative wish list also includes proposed Riverside Pool upgrades, a “Miracle Field” at the Cube for disabled players, improvements at the city’s fitness center, and potential downtown traffic reconfiguring.
Schmelzer said as of yet, there are no surprises, additions or major subtractions for the 2014 capital improvement plan. The wish list still includes nearly $4 million more in capital spending than last year, using city income tax money.
Debt repayment will be considered by council separately, at an upcoming meeting. Including debt payments brings this year’s proposed spending total to $33.4 million.
The ordinance approved this week appropriates money for the first wave of capital spending. It underwent three readings by council, scrutiny by committee, and inquiries from individual council members.