City amends 2018 appropriations

ENGLEWOOD — City council adopted an ordinance at its Oct. 9 meeting to amend budget appropriations for 2018.

The Street Light Operating Fund was amended to appropriate an additional $160,000 for additional expenditures related to the Englewood Meadows project and street lights on Union Road.

The Sidewalk Improvement Fund was amended to for an additional $30,000 in expenditures associated with the annual sidewalk project.

The Reserve for Water Improvement Fund was amended for an additional $60,500 in expenditures associated with the Wenger Road water main project.

“Della Stearns (director of finance) and I spoke this afternoon because apparently there is some questions about how this whole thing works… some confusion,” said City Manager Eric Smith. “What I would suggest to council is that we have a workshop session with the topic of fiduciary responsibilities, budgeting and so forth. A lot of folks think that the way municipal accounting occurs is very similar to the private sector. It is not. It is completely different.”

Smith said in the past there were some questions asked about how the city handles its finances.

“It is all required according by the Ohio Revised Code,” Smith said. “Until we have some face time with each other where we can explain what is going on, particularly since we have a new council member who may not be familiar with the process, it might be worthwhile to get together and Della can put together a presentation for an hour or so.”

Mayor Patricia Burnside suggested that the workshop should be scheduled for a Tuesday evening when a scheduled council meeting would take place, but was cancelled due to lack of agenda items.

In a related matter, council passed a resolution to increase the 2018 curb and sidewalk (replacement) contract with Coate Construction, LLC from $200,000 to $300,000.

“The reason for the increase is twofold; an unexpectedly large amount of curb work was required on N. Walnut Street associated with this year’s paving program and a number of residents have elected to have additional work done at their property, which improves property values,” said William Singer, director of community and economic development.

The estimated amount of curb and sidewalk work needed is established in January, based on historical amounts of previous sidewalk programs.

“As with any project, the cost is just an estimate and change throughout the project, as it has in this year’s sidewalk program,” Singer said. “The residents do reimburse us and a lot of time people don’t want just half of their driveway done that needs to be replaced, so they opt to have the entire driveway approach replaced or more curb work done to enhance their property.”

In another budget related matter, council passed a resolution to purchase LED street lights for Union Boulevard. The last segment of the city owned decorative street lights conversion is on Union Boulevard where 69 high pressure sodium lamps will be upgraded to modern, energy efficient LED units that provide improved illumination with a white, rather than yellowish tint. The LED lamps also have a life expectancy of up to 30 years while using 60 percent less electricity.

“There were four other areas in the city where the conversion has already occurred and the last conversion was on N. Main Street from National Road north, which was only a couple of months ago,” Smith noted. “When you drive that at night it is a dramatic improvement. This concludes the conversion. The city actually owns the decorative street lights. The other 1,300 residential street lights have already been converted to LED but the owners, which is Miami Valley Lighting, a subsidiary of Dayton Power & Light.”

By Ron Nunnari

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Reach Ron Nunnari at 684-9124, via email [email protected] or on Twitter @Englewood_Ind