A total budget of $4.67 million dollars was approved for 2016 by Greenfield Village Council at Wednesday’s meeting.
The total budget approved includes a $1.42 million general fund budget. But the overall budget will likely increase, according to council clerk Roberta Karnes, who said that railroad funds not used this year will be appropriated onto next year’s budget.
Last year, Greenfield’s budget was more than $9 million, but that included the more than $3 million for the railroad rehab project and additional funds for railroad operational expenses.
The bulk of the railroad work is complete, but there are some things yet to finish. Greenfield City Manager Ron Coffey on Wednesday estimated that the whole rehab project could be completed within the first quarter of next year.
In other business, a few residents came prepared to discuss the possible controversial community trash service, but most of that was tabled right out of the gate by council chair Betty Jackman.
Jackman said that the matter will be put into the Health, Safety and Welfare Committee for study and review. After that, the matter will come up for discussion at a public council meeting.
Coffey said two bids were received for community trash service on Dec. 14. Those bids have already been reviewed by the finance committee and now will go for further scrutiny by committee.
Coffey said that in the requests for bids more than just straight trash service was asked for, and the two bids submitted, by Community Sanitation and Rumpke, provided a lot of options to be considered.
Representatives from both companies were present in the event that residents had questions.
The city manager said previously that when the matter of communitywide trash service was addressed in the past, it was not a popular subject with residents. But he said that such a service could save residents money and could also help with some of the village’s ongoing trash issues.
“If it is something that will save people money and keep our community cleaner, it is worth looking at,” Coffey said at a council meeting earlier this month.
Greenfield resident Steve Fligor, who was on the agenda and able to speak before council, said he has heard “a lot of rumblings about the trash thing.” He said the rumblings are likely due to uncertainty and a lack of knowledge on what the residential, communitywide trash service would entail.
He said he was “delighted” to know that council would be digging deeper into the proposals and encouraged council members to have a committee made up of citizens, and village and council representatives to address it as well.
Fligor also laid out a list of other things that he would like to see the city address such as being “more aggressive” on the drug problem. As an example he made a favorable reference to Hillsboro’s signs at entrances to the city that warn that the city will not stand for drug activity. Also on Fligor’s list was that council consider the “crumbling” state of some of the homes and buildings in the village and the council’s authority to make changes, the condition of some of the villages streets, and the need for jobs.
“We’ve got to deal with the problems,” Fligor said after thanking council members for their time.
Council member Chris Borreson asked for a list of the specific items mentioned. Fligor said he would provide that.
On the matter of jobs, council member Brenda Losey said that a lot of people are expected to attend the job fairs this week for Corvac Composites’ first wave of hiring.
Losey said that for those that attend “if it looks overwhelming” due to the amount of people to give it some time and come back, but be sure to come back. “We’re going to get everyone through the door” that comes, she said.
She said people don’t have to stay to fill out an application, but a paper application is necessary and must be picked up and returned during the job fairs.
A job fair was held Thursday. The other is set for Friday, Dec. 18 from 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. at the Greenfield Area Christian Center, 912 N. Fifth St., Greenfield.
In other business, Coffey reported that a recent EPA inspection of the waste water treatment plant required no response from the village. He said that was “excellent news” since previous inspections have required the village to act on something discovered in inspections.
Reach Angela Shepherd at 937-393-3456, ext. 1681, or on Twitter @wordyshepherd.