Alderman discuss financing for recovery projects

By Daniel Brunty

The Winston County Journal

The Louisville Board of Aldermen held a brief meeting to discuss financing options regarding the city’s upcoming FEMA and MEMA projects during its April 19 meeting held at City Hall.

Mayor Will Hill wanted to update the board members on where they are in regards to the finances for the city. “Our exposure with city share and MEMA share right now is at 7.9 million dollars,” Hill said. “We have a five million dollar line of credit, and our resolution of intent to issue GO (General Obligation) bonds is at a four million dollar cap.”

Hill continued. “What we are trying to do is “bridge the gap” on the MEMA dollars,” he said. “To summarize, I am requesting of the board to acquire a 3.5 million dollar bridge loan to float us until the plywood project is completed. Once it is completed, we will receipt that money from MEMA on a grant anticipation note.”

Hill stated that funds have been managed well for the projects up until this point, however, funds at this point in time are “realty tight.” Hill anticipates at the board’s next meeting, they will have to make the decision regarding the loan.

Hill then informed the board that at the present time the city is within its operating budget, minus disaster recovery. The disaster recovery budget is at an excess of 62 million dollars, which is being handled on an individual case-by-case basis.

“In that, our only substantial debt exposure is what we just paid in our old GO bond,” Hill said. “We have a five million dollar line of credit, which we have been using and have exhausted that, and now are waiting on the MEMA portion.”

After a few more minutes of discussion, the board continued with new business.

Mayor Will Hill gave a brief update on the upcoming 2016 Great American Cleanup, Keep Winston Beautiful event. Hill requested of the board to adopt a proclamation declaring the week of April 25-30 as the community-wide cleanup.

Hill stated that Century Construction, Yates Construction, and Hughes Construction have committed equipment, manpower, and cooperation during the week of the cleanup under the WinstonStrong umbrella.

Hill then asked for a motion to declare the week of April 25-30 as Community-wide Cleanup, with the proclamation entered upon the board’s minutes. Ward 4 Alderman Eugene Crosby made the motion, which was seconded by Ward 3 Alderwoman Gwenita Mays. The board passed the motion unanimously.

In other news, the board:

• Authorized payment of $26,250 to Clearwater Consultants for Request #2 on the 2015 AIP Layout Plan Update project

• Authorized payment of $176,980 to First Security Bank for semi-annual payment

• Authorized payment of $640 to M&N Computers, and $1,020 to Sync-IT for internet connection with C-Spire

• Authorized payment of $5,305 to MS Service Company for audited premium on 2013-2014 plan year

• Approved mayor’s request for travel allowance to Washington, D.C. to accept National Phoenix Award, April 30-May 3

• Approved the hiring of Tracy Mullins at $9 per hour as part-time employee of Animal Control Department

• Authorized the mayor to pursue and negotiate the purchase of property for storm shelter project at Fair Elementary

The Louisville Board of Aldermen will hold its next meeting on May 3, 2016 at City Hall.