Janesville City Council cuts back on borrowing plan
JANESVILLE The Janesville City Council on Monday did what it has not done in recent memory: It took a big chunk out of suggested borrowing.
The council, led by members Matt Kealy and DuWayne Severson, cut $1.72 million from a total $16.97 million proposed for 2012, leaving total borrowing at $15.250 million.
Council members Deb-Dongarra Adams and Jim Farrell concurred with many of the cuts, while Russ Steeber and Liebert mostly voted against them. Council President Kathy Voskuil was absent.
The administration also had pared the note because of favorable project bids, with new garbage carts now costing $2.48 million instead of $3.15 million and a sanitary sewer lining contract now at $1 million rather than $1.175.
In other news, the council:
-- Delayed borrowing half of the $1.2 million for a new fire department. Steeber made an impassioned plea for public safety. Kealy and Severson said they weren't against buying the equipment but rather for borrowing the money before it was needed.
Assistant City Manager Jay Winzenz said administration wanted to spread borrowing across several years for large projects, especially with several large projects looming in the next couple of years.
-- Delayed $100,000 to design an animal holding facility, again until it was needed. The vote was 6-0.
-- Cut $100,000 from a fund to buy blighted properties, leaving $125,000. Liebert and Farrell voted "no."
-- Cut $70,000 from $250,000 set aside for information technology projects, including one to update the fire department's payroll system. Severson said money set aside for this function can sometimes get "a little inflated," and Farrell wondered if the city could save money by outsourcing its payroll. Liebert and Steeber voted "no."
-- Cut $50,000 from $200,000 for a multipurpose room at the ice arena. Kealy said the city already has borrowed more than $2 million for renovations there. Liebert voted "no."
-- Severson suggested cutting $110,000 to improve parking at the Youth Sports Complex. That motion failed, with Kealy and Severson voting in support.