The New Ulm RENU Committee has begun holding hearings on the various projects that have been proposed for funding through an extension of the city’s half-percent sales tax. In this, the committee is going through what legislators go through in developing a bonding bill.
Legislators typically approve a bonding package of a billion dollars or so in the off-budget years. And typically there are projects that would cost four or five that amount competing for funding.
The RENU committee has the same problem. It has received final project proposals totalling $38 million, while it is expecting the sale tax extension to fund some $13 to $15 million in bonds. Obviously, a lot of picking and choosing will take place before the New Ulm City Council approves a final plan to presented to voters in a referendum this coming November.
We strongly encourage members of the public who are interested in these projects to attend the RENU committee meetings in the coming weeks. Yesterday the committee reviewed the New Industrial Park Project and National Guard Armory Project proposals. Upcoming meetings include: April 19: Park and Recreation Department – Recreation Center Expansion, Civic Center Expansion, Johnson Park Grandstand Renovation, Hermann Heights Park Improvements; April 26: State Street Theatre and Turner Hall; May 3: City Engineering Projects – Railroad Crossing Improvements, Hwy 14 & Highland Intersection, Airport Improvements, Center & Garden Intersection Improvements, Storm Water Drainage. In May the committee will be narrowing down its selections, and preparing a recommendation for the City Council in June.
Ultimately, it will be your decision. Why not help make it ahead of time?