SHERIDAN — The Sheridan City Council hosted the first of two work sessions Tuesday dedicated to hearing updates from the recipients of Optional One-Cent Sales Tax funds.
In total, eight groups presented information regarding their respective organization’s recent accomplishments and goals for the upcoming year.
If ultimately approved, more than 20 groups will receive $3,285,744 in funds.
When initially OK’d by voters several years ago, the Optional One-Cent funds were set to provide $36 million to those same groups, but sluggish revenue streams forced 11 percent across the board cuts, Sheridan Treasurer Jennifer Reed said.
Fiscal Year 2014, which begins July 1, will mark the third year those cuts have been in place.
Tuesday presenters included the Sheridan County Chamber of Commerce, the Downtown Sheridan Association, the North Main Association, the Dog and Cat Shelter, Habitat for Humanity, the Advocacy and Resource Center, Child Advocacy Services of the Big Horns and the Child Development Center.
In five-minute increments, representatives of each group addressed members of the council to make the case for a continuance of funding.
Councilman Alex Lee presided over the hearing in the absence of Mayor Dave Kinskey and Council President John Heath, both of whom were attending a meeting of the Sheridan Economic and Educational Development Authority Joint Powers Board.
Lee said the recipients of Optional One-Cent funds are actively involved in bettering the Sheridan community, and are therefore worthy beneficiaries of public money.
“These One-Cent recipients are a glimpse of our community as a whole, and we care about the individuals within the borders of this city,” he said following the hearing.
The entire proposed city budget totals about $44.3 million. The general fund by itself is expected to be about $10.2 million.
City officials expect to have the document finalized by May 22.
Near-daily noon work sessions will be held between now and then to gather input from city agencies regarding budgetary requirements.