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St. Mary purchase will boost Hillview annual budget

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By The Staff

    HILLVIEW - The upcoming annual budget for the city of Hillview will take a significant jump for the 2010-11 fiscal year.

    But most of that increase will involve the purchase of the St. Mary Catholic Church property.

    With $1.23 million built into the budget to make the purchase and renovations, the Hillview City Council approved its $3.99 budget for the coming year.

    This compares to the revised budget of $3.1 million for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2010.

    A big difference this year will be the carry over funds from the prior year. After having $314,000 to bring forward last year, that amount is budgeted to be just $11,929 in the general fund on June 30.

    The carryover for municipal aid funds will also be greatly reduced - from $171,321 to $12,917.

    However, mayor Jim Eadens said all signs are positive in terms of the city’s finances.

    The city is expecting to generate more funds through its occupational tax as jobs continue to grow. After receiving just over $1 million from occupational taxes this year, the city expects that to grow to $1.25 million in the coming year.

    In terms of appropriations, a major change is that the rail spur project, which was $1 million, at the Sabert plant is nearly completed. That takes $775,000 out of the budget. However, the city added $520,000 to refinance the Ferguson Lane property.

    There were no major changes to any of the departmental line items for the coming fiscal year. No salary increases are budgeted for employees.

    The 2010-11 budget and the amended 2009-10 budget were both passed by the council.

    In other business:

    *Police chief Aaron Yates said the department is now tracking its mileage to gauge the amount of patrolling being done in the city.

    The tracking started June 1 and Yates said a more accurate report would be available in July.

    *Mayor Jim Eadens said that a contract was awarded by the council to deal with yards not being cut. The contract allows for $15 per yard and the hope is to place liens on the property so the city can recoup its money down the road.

    There are 25 lawns being cut after they have become abandoned or gone into foreclosure.

    Eadens said the code enforcement officer has been doing a good job and would continue to issue warnings for compliance issues.

    *Due to the July 4 holiday, the city dumpster will now be open on Saturday, July 10, from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Prairie Drive.

    *On Oct. 2, a 5K Run/Walk will be held in honor of the late Jim Burton. All proceeds will go to Operation Santa.

    Participants will be asked to make a donation of a new toy or a cash donation to the cause. Signups will begin at 7 a.m. and the run/walk starts at 8 a.m. at city hall.

    *Volleyball signups are currently being taken for the new session of play. Signups will be taken through Aug. 19.

    *July 19 will be free movie day at the community center. The movie “UP” will be shown at 10 a.m. and lunch will be served afterwards.

    *Parks director Terry Bohannon said over $400 was generated at the Hillview Fair for Operation Santa. A committee will be formed to help organize and oversee the annual event.

    *Eadens addressed the public regarding some recent health issues after rumors began to circulate.

    The mayor said that he was undergoing chemotherapy treatments for cancer; however, he recently had 17 lymph nodes removed and all were free of cancer.

    “Thank you for your prayers and support,” said Eadens.

    He said there had been a lot of rumors but he was alive and well and still kicking.

    The next meeting of the Hillview City Council will be on Monday, July 19, at 7:30 p.m. at the Hillview City Hall. The public is invited.