The Port Allen City Council approved a more than $10 million budget for 2019-2020 after stripping the community development fund for the second year in a row. The council approved two amendments and voted down another two during the Wednesday, June 12 meeting.
A move by Councilman Gary Hubble and a vote from Council members Carey Williams and Hugh Riviere dissolved the $30,000 community development budget. The Council will approve spending for community events on a “case-by-case basis” again this year, depending on corporate sponsorship and community participation.
“I believe that any event the city has should be offset by a substantial amount of corporate sponsorship,” Hubble said.”....if you look back at this [past] fiscal year there’s a lot that you did.”
Councilman Brandon Brown, chairman of the Community Development Committee, said he was not made aware of the cut before the meeting.
“I’m ready to put it to a vote,” he said. “That’s their opinion. They can have it.”
A move by Hugh Riviere to defer the two $75,000 bathroom projects at Cohn Park and Centennial Park failed, only eliciting the support of Councilman Hubble.
Deferring the construction of the restroom facilities is more fiscally responsible in light of problems with infrastructure, Riviere said.
An extra $5,000 for an emergency repair to the air conditioning at The Depot gained unanimous support from the council.
The budget also includes a near doubling of funds for Animal Control, up to $66,000 from last year’s $35,000. Each municipality and the parish increased funding to animal control to offset costs of the new WBR Animal Shelter.