Despite the impact of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic on city revenue, discussion thereof gave way to regular city business at the May 26 virtual meeting of Montgomery City Council, at which City Administrator Richard Tramm gave several reports on the state of city departments.
Tramm said he expects the city to see a sales tax reduction of less than 30% when the city receives April’s sales tax information in June. He said many other Montgomery County cities rely on big retailers, many of which were closed down during the pandemic, for sales tax revenue
"It'll be July [when we] present a revised budget to council, but then, you'll be able to take that figure and walk right into the budgeting for [fiscal year 2020-21]," Tramm said.
City department heads have identified “several hundred thousand dollars of items” that can be cut when the city has a clearer idea of its budget shortfall due to the pandemic, according to Tramm.
New members, downtown development, nonprofit support
- Council accepted the resignation of Council Member John Champagne and approved the appointment of Randy Burleigh to fill his vacant seat. Council Member Rebecca Huss said Burleigh has a lot of experience that would be useful to the city as it deals with the economic effects of the pandemic.
- For its Heritage III development at 21227 and 21265 Eva St., developer Cheatam Management has been approved for a variance to set the front facade 10 feet from the street with parking in the back to maintain the historic look of the downtown Montgomery area.
- Council waived the water and wastewater impact fees for a development by Walker Montgomery CDC, a nonprofit that provides affordable housing for low-income individuals. Tramm said the total fees waived come to $16,180.