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City Council will meet Tuesday, May 17, in a business session at 7 p.m., followed by a work session. Both sessions are open to the public.
The business session will be held in the Council Chambers on the fourth floor of the Municipal Building, which is located at 427 Patton St.
The work session will be held on the same floor, but across the hall in the Council Conference Room. In work sessions, Council reviews non-routine matters that will be voted upon in future business meetings.
During the business session, City Council is scheduled to vote on the Danville Public Schools budget for the next school year. School officials have presented a proposed budget of $61.2 million. To pay for that level of spending, they are asking the City of Danville to contribute $19 million for school operations and $1.64 million for school debt service.
The City’s city contribution of $20.64 million for school operations and debt service for the next school year would be a 10.4 percent increase from the current school year.
City Manager Ken Larking has included $2.2 million for repairs at G.L.H. Johnson Elementary School and $1.6 million for a precision machine project at George Washington High School among the list of proposed City capital and special projects for the next fiscal year. These projects will be funded by bonds and voted upon by City Council next month.
In addition to the school budget, City Council has votes scheduled on the following matters:
• an increase in electric rates and charges, effective July 1. If approved, the bill for the typical residential customer would increase by $2.43 a month. Gas, water and wastewater rates will remain unchanged.• a list of housing and community development activities that will receive federal funding in the next year. These activities include home construction, homebuyer assistance, homeowner and rental rehabilitation, maintenance code enforcement, improvements to Green Street Park, utility assistance and housing administration costs. A public hearing will precede the vote.• a 10-year agreement for a 15 megawatts electric capacity hedge that would save money based on forecasted market price increases.• transfer of unspent money by Danville Public Schools due to high teacher vacancies to the City. The City, in turn, will later send this money back to the school system to help cover salary increases, higher employee health insurance costs, the loss state carryover money, federal Title III requirements and initiatives involving security, technology and maintenance.
First readings will be held on four matters:
• acceptance of federal money to extend the Riverwalk Trail on Trade Street from Advance Street to Commerce Street.• annual appropriation of money from the Danville-Pittsylvania County Community Services Board to the special recreation division of the Parks and Recreation Department for recreation enrichment and summer programs to citizens that are intellectually challenged.• approval of the proposed budget for City operations and capital and special projects for the next fiscal year, which begins July 1. Under the proposed budget, municipal services and programs will remain at current levels with no increases in real estate, meals and lodging tax rates. A public hearing will precede the first reading on this matter.
A first reading is an introductory step required by City code before certain matters can be voted upon by City Council. This step serves to provide public notice of pending action. Council cannot vote on these matters Tuesday. The earliest votes that can take place will be the June 7 Council meeting.
For the work session, City Council will review monthly financial statements, proposed changes to various provisions of the city’s personnel regulations, and a proposal to extend a revenue sharing agreement with the Virginia Department of Transportation.
In addition to the business and work sessions, a special session will be held at 5:30 p.m. for consultation with legal counsel. This session will be closed to the public as allowed by state law.
River City TV, the city’s government access channel, will air the business session. Watch it live on cable (Comcast channel 10 and Gamewood channel 122) or streaming at RiverCityTV.org, the River City TV Facebook page, or the city's YouTube channel – DanvilleVaGov.
River City TV does not air work sessions, but they are open to the public.