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Local News

March 11, 2014

City council to discuss projects, half-cent sales tax

DUNCAN — City Manager Jim Frieda hopes to give Duncan City Council members an idea of how much money the city would get from  continuation of the city’s half-cent economic development sales tax.

Council members will meet at 5:15 p.m. today in the council chambers at 720 W. Willow.

Infrastructure projects, including street improvements and water conservation efforts, are on the agenda for discussion.

The half-cent sales tax goes in front of Duncan voters April 1. If approved, the funds will be divided evenly between the Duncan Area Economic Development Foundation and the City of Duncan.

“It will be worth giving some attention to the projects we have identified for streets and water,” Frieda said.

The agenda item is only up for discussion and no action can or will be taken, Frieda said.

Frieda said council will be advised about how much money the city might collect from the sales tax  and where some infrastructure improvement projects stand.

He hopes to have a number for an annual average of how much the city will get for infrastructure purposes.

The half-cent sales tax will continue another five years if voters approve on April 1.

“We will see what those projects require, what we expect to receive from our quarter-cent cut from the sales tax,” Frieda said. “We identified infrastructure needs some time ago. We may need to prioritize.”

Another item council members will discuss is the completion of the electrical connection for a generator at the Criminal Justice Building.

This project, which is set to be completed by B.J.’s Electric for $4,875.24, will allow the Criminal Justice Building be used as an emergency shelter in case people are displaced. Frieda said the building will take overflow from the Stephens County Fair & Expo Center.

In 2010, the City of Duncan and surrounding communities were without electricity for an extended period because of an ice storm. An emergency shelter was set up at the Fair & Expo Center and was eventually taken over by the American Red Cross.

Getting the generator connected at the Criminal Justice Building will allow the city to provide a warm place for people to go if there’s an extended loss of power again.

“The city purchased a very large generator,” Frieda said. “This will make a total connection. We can power the whole facility. There is enough floor space that, in case they have an overflow, people can go there. There will be heat and kitchen facilities.”

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