City plans $12.1 million in capital projects

SHERIDAN — City budget discussions continued Thursday with a noon work session devoted to the public works department, fleet replacement requests and information on upcoming capital improvement projects for Fiscal Year 2014.

Public Works Director Nic Bateson introduced department staff and gave an overview of goals for the year. Various public works divisions will present their budget requests throughout upcoming budget sessions.

Bateson said in the last six years, the public works department has reduced its budget by an average of 25 percent.

Budget goals for 2014 include identifying reserve funding, identifying capital improvement projects that will reduce reoccurring operating budget items, prioritizing staff training that will benefit city operations, budgeting for standard operating procedures not worst case scenarios, improving paperless operations and working on partnerships and workforce development.

Bateson proposed a budget of $642,736 for fleet replacement of streets, parks and police department vehicles.

The police department requested two new patrol cars at a cost of $42,000 each, and the parks department requested $27,000 for vehicle replacement.

The streets department asked for $531,736, much of which will go towards replacing the city’s sewer vac truck.

Funds for fleet replacement come from the general fund, supplemental funds, reserve funds, grants and emergency service Optional One-Cent Sales Tax funds.

The city of Sheridan operates 189 vehicles, Bateson said.

City Engineer Lane Thompson presented budget requests for capital improvement projects.

The department has budgeted just over $12.1 million for improvement projects in FY2014. These will include rotomill and overlay for street maintenance, continued construction on Wyoming and Park Avenues, the High Tech Business Park, the Fifth Street underpass, West Fifth Street work and continued work on parks and pathways projects.

Thompson said the city monitors street quality closely to make sure rotomill, overlay and other repairs are done before quality drops below 40 percent.

He said every dollar spent before street quality drops below 40 percent costs $4 later if maintenance is delayed. The city spends approximately $1 million on rotomill and overlay projects each year.

Rotomilling is set to begin May 20.

About

Hannah Wiest is the government and outdoors reporter for The Sheridan Press. She has lived in Colorado and Montana but loves her sunny home state of Wyoming best. She joined The Press staff in February 2013.

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