By Marty Mayfield
The Raton city commission started their meeting Tuesday evening with the financial report, which again has good and bad news.
The bad news of course is that the gross receipts continue to run about 4% below budget while the city’s expenses are being held in check. This is keeping the city in a positive standing as far as the budget goes noted City Treasurer Michael Ann Antonucci. (Link to the May 2015 Financial Report)
As of the end of May income to the city is still above expenditures by just under $500,000. The gross receipts tax income is $115,105 under the budgeted amount of $282,699.
Commissioners approved the changes to the signature cards for the various bank accounts at FNB New Mexico.
City Treasurer Michael Ann Antonucci has been working on revising the city’s purchasing and procurement policy that was originally adopted in November 2012. She has recently finished her training and become a certified procurement officer and therefore saw the need to update the policy to meet Raton’s needs more closely. She noted much of it is simply language changes and updates to new regulations. The city will also be setting up a new procurement module in their accounting system so they can better track money in each of the department’s funds in order to prevent overdrafts when purchase orders are requested. Commissioners however did table the policy to have more time to look over the policy and allow the department heads make recommendations in their upcoming training on the policy this week. (Link to the DRAFT City of Raton Purchase Policy 2015)(For Questions on the Policy Contact Michael Ann Antonucci at 445-9551)
Commissioners approved the JJAC subcontract with the Service Organization for Youth. It was noted that Children Youth and Families Department has raised the funding awarded to the group. The projected budgeted amount is $179,785.
The objective of the organization is to secure alternatives to detention for youth in Raton and Colfax County who have been arrested or referred to the juvenile probation office or those at risk of such referral.
The Lodger’s Tax board forwarded a request to spend money from the contingency fund for a new sand volleyball court, disk golf course and Bocce ball court. The commissioners tabled the request because they felt they needed a more thorough accounting of just how much money was coming from which fund and a better accounting of the amounts on the cost of the work to be done.
They then approved the LEDA ordinance and the project participation agreement with the New Mexico Economic Development Department for the digital projection equipment for the Shuler Theater. (Link to the LEDA Ordinance) (PROJECT PARTICIPATION AGREEMENT 2015 Shuler Digital Projection Project)
Commissioners then approved all five of the street closure and activity requests, which included the VFW Post 1793 July 4th street dance. It will also cover Mainstreet’s Music on Main Street at Ripley Park, the Fun Walk and Run at Roundhouse Park and the St Patrick’s St. Joseph’s Annual Fiesta and street closure.
City Manager Scott Berry went over the Infrastructure Capital Improvement Plan. The priority on the plan is the transfer station and work on the dam at Lake Maloya. Street improvements follow third on the list. (Link to the ICIP Report)
Commissioners learned that the city was approved for $150,000 of capital improvement funds from the recent four-hour legislative session. Berry requested that the money be dedicated to repairing the remainder of Tiger Drive. That is the section east of the railroad tracks. Berry is hopeful that he can get the money soon and include some other funds and maybe get Tiger Drive repaved before school starts or shortly after. Of course that depends on the sale of the bonds for the money and working with the railroad since the project buts up against the tracks.
In his report Berry reported that they are hoping to have the inspection work on the outlet pipes done in November at the lake. Watershed work in the Segerstrom watershed will take a permit from the Army Corp of Engineers due to the scope of the work.
Chip seal work on the area south of 9th Avenue will begin July 6th as well as work on the Wells Fargo Building. Work on the First Street water line project is progressing and should be done in a couple of weeks.
Bids for the Multi-Modal Center are due June 30 and Berry expects to award the bid at the July 14 meeting. The work will begin with a basic project and if there is money available, additive projects will be added to the project. If money is not then the project will at least have a basic model completed.
Berry received the 50% complete plan on the Great Blocks project from the consultant. The estimate for the project is about $1.5 million and the consultant will be in town Thursday to discuss funding opportunities. The state Mainstreet organization is very interested in the project and they are dedicated to helping find funding. The state is also interested in helping and Berry thinks there may be some funding through NMDOT.
Bids for the plumbing work in the Library are in the works however the headache will be abating the asbestos that the old galvanized piping is wrapped in.
A couple of announcements include that recycling will be moved from the first Saturday in July to July 11 the second Saturday due to the holiday. It was also noted that some mosquito spraying has been done but Berry noted that if you have bees or have some area that is sensitive to the spraying you need to contact the city or the county to let them know you have issues with the spraying so they can avoid that area.
The next regular meeting is scheduled for July 14 but there probably will be a special meeting on June 30 to deal with a time sensitive issue for a business in town.