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City Council Meeting Minutes



JUNE 22, 2005 AND JUNE 23, 2005

The Jackson, Tennessee City Council met for a called budget meeting at 9:00 a.m. on June 22, 2005, in the George A. Smith Meeting Room at City Hall with Mayor Charles Farmer and Council members John Bannister; Charles “Pepper” Bray; Ernest Brooks, II; Harvey Buchanan; David Cisco; Johnny Lee Dodd; Maurice Hays; and Charles Rahm present. Also present was Toni Ross, recorder of the minutes.

Council member Johnny Dodd gave the invocation and led the audience in the pledge of allegiance to the flag.

Mayor Farmer advised that the consideration of filling the vacancy for the District 5 council seat would not be considered until the July 5, 2005 meeting.

On the motion of Council member Bannister, seconded by Council member Bray, unanimous approval was given to a change order in the amount of $12,500 with Gresham, Smith and Partners for the design contract for Vann Drive at Emporium Drive.

Al Laffoon, City Recorder, and Karen Bell, Director of Finance, Audit & Budget, gave an overall summary of the expected revenue and expenses for the 2005-2006 budget year. Mr. Laffoon advised that he projected there would be an approximate $2.3 million shortage in the budget and recommended that the City Council consider additional sources of revenue. Mr. Laffoon advised that it would take an increase of 34¢ in the property tax rate to fund the City’s general debt obligations; that approximately $348,000 in additional revenue could be generated if the fee for a city sticker was increased from $15 to $25; and approximately $165,000 in additional revenue could be collected if the City initiated a local litigation tax on all cases at City Court.

Johnny Williams, Public Services Director, gave a presentation on the proposed Sportsplex. He outlined a proposed change in the original design of the Sportsplex to bring the cost down to the $11.5 million amount originally approved by the City Council. Council member Cisco made a motion to approve borrowing $5.9 million for funding the Sportsplex. The motion was seconded by Council member Dodd and was approved 5-3, with Council members Bray, Cisco, Dodd, Hays, and Rahm voting yea and Council members Bannister, Brooks and Buchanan voting nay.

Department heads gave summaries of their budget proposals and answered questions from City Council members.

Mayor Farmer advised that the City had recently opened bids for the sale of the Landfill, which seemed to be perfect timing in that Madison County recently advised they would be terminating a longstanding, 15 year agreement with the City to pay one-half of the expenses of the Landfill. Madison County recently approved funding for only 3 months of additional funding for the Landfill. Mayor Farmer advised that the City had received three bids and it appeared that the best offer was received from BFI/Allied Waste.

Mayor Farmer adjourned the meeting to allow the City Council time to consider the various options available to them for the upcoming budget.

JUNE 23, 2005 – 9:00 A.M.

The meeting reconvened at 9:00 a.m. on June 23, 2005 with all members present.

Mayor Farmer opened the floor to the City Council to ask questions or obtain clarification on matters relating to the 2005-2006 budget.

Council member Hays commended the City’s department heads and city employees as a whole for their hard work in cutting their previous budgets and holding down expenses.

Council member Hays made a motion to approve the operating budget for 2005-2006 as submitted and trust the Mayor and department heads to make the approximate $2.1 million in cuts needed to balance the budget. Included in Council member Hays’ motion was a motion to increase the fee for a city sticker from $15 to $25; initiate a local litigation tax at City Court in the amount of $13.75 per case; and a raise for city employees costing 3% of the City’s payroll (approximately $762,000). The motion was seconded by Council member Buchanan and was unanimously approved.

Council member Buchanan made a motion to approve the capital budget 2005-2006 as submitted. The motion was seconded by Council member Bray and was unanimously approved.

Council member Cisco made a motion to approve the certified tax rate, which at this time was proposed to be $2.07 per $100 assessed value; however, was pending final state certification of the recent reappraisal. The motion was seconded by Council member Brooks and was unanimously approved.

There being no further business, the meeting was adjourned.




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