Council looks at budget, interchange


BROOKINGS – The Brookings City Council will consider action on the proposed budget for 2021 and hear updates to the planned 20th Street South interchange at its meeting set for 6 p.m. Tuesday at the City & County Government Center.

2021 budget

“Staff presents a balanced and sustainable proposed 2021 budget of $53,988,116, which is a decrease of $1.2 million, or 2%, from the 2020 budget,” according to an attachment to the agenda, which is available on the city’s website.

“The budget includes a proposed balanced General Fund of $16,826,047. The budget is considered balanced as revenues are equal to expenditures. Public safety, public works, and parks, recreation, and forestry account for approximately 73% of the General Fund. Sales tax, property tax and transfers account for approximately 82% of General Fund revenue,” according to a memo from Assistant City Manager Jacob Meshke. 

“Special revenue/debt service funds total $11.9 million. Project-heavy Storm Drainage and Special Assessment Funds in addition to the Swiftel Center account for 72% of special revenue/debt service fund expenditures,” according to Meshke’s memo.

“Enterprise Funds total $15.8 million for 2021. A significant change for the 2021 budget is that the liquor pass through – approximately $6.8 million – will now be accounted for in the Liquor Fund as opposed to the General Fund. In total, Enterprise Funds are proposed to operate at a $1.5 million surplus for 2021,” according to Meshke’s memo. 

“The Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) maintains/replaces existing facilities, vehicles, and equipment while providing no additions. The 2021 CIP expenditures are proposed to be $9.3 million,” according to Meshke’s memo. 

“Major projects for 2021 include library HVAC repairs, annual street overlay and chip seal projects, and vehicle/equipment replacement. While the CIP is balanced through 2023, strategic decisions will be needed in the future with a nearly $1 million annual payment from 2022-2027 for the Performing Arts Center, aging police facility, and widespread maintenance needs of existing city facilities,” according to Meshke’s memo.

20th St. S. interchange

City Engineer Jackie Lanning will provide a 30% construction review of the 20th Street South interchange project. The 60% review is tentatively scheduled for November 2020, and the 90% review is tentatively scheduled for February 2021.

“The City of Brookings was awarded a federal “Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development” (BUILD) Grant (in the fall of 2019) to construct 20th Street South between 22nd Avenue South and 34th Avenue South along with an interchange at Interstate 29 and 20th Street South. The engineering firm HDR was hired to complete the first phase of the project, which will include the Interstate Justification Report, environmental assessment, right-of-way and design,” according to a memo by Lanning attached to the agenda.

“The BUILD Grant was awarded through the U.S. Department of Transportation for a total project cost anticipated at $23,347,037. Approximately $4,669,407 or 20% of the funding is local. This local match is met with city partners including $2 million from Brookings County, $669,407 from private donors and $2 million of city funding to make the project possible,” according to Lanning’s memo.

“In January, city staff met with the state and federal government officials. A timeline was developed to meet the grant deadlines and notice was given that all engineering, design, environmental, etc. needs to be finalized by June 2021 and bidding for construction is anticipated in September 2021. To meet this aggressive timeline, the state has agreed to take the administrative lead while the city is identified as the project manager. This grants the state greater oversight as they have extensive knowledge and experience with federal grants, timelines, funding and large-scale projects,” according to Lanning’s memo.

Other business

The council on Tuesday will also consider action on the 10-Year Capital Improvement Plan; amendments to the consolidated fee schedule; preliminary plats in the Telkamp Industrial Addition; encroachment easement into public right-of-way for 327 Main Ave.; and creating boundaries of Tax Increment Financing districts No. 9 and No. 10.

The council will also hear a COVID-19 update.

Contact Jodelle Greiner at [email protected]

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