Bloomington has a $60 million backlog of road work in the city. (Ryan Denham/WJBC)
By Stephanie Pawlowski
BLOOMINGTON - Bloomington is hosting a citizen voice meeting Wednesday night at the Bloomington Center for the Performing Arts and the topic is the fiscal year 2014 budget.
But, City Manager David Hales said he also wants to hear what residents think about spending more on road work. He raised the question of how to fund it and brought up the topic of a possible tax increase.
"It all depends on how much more you would support spending. Some of the options could be increasing our utility tax," Hales said. "That's currently 2.5 percent. Normal and most communities pay five percent."
Hales said the increase would raise $4 million to $5 million a year. He said one council member has also raised the idea of a local motor fuel tax.
The city has increased funding each year for street resurfacing and the proposed fiscal year 2014 budget includes $4 million in spending for street overlays.
"We have a $60 million backlog of streets that need to be overlaid and improved, so that gives you an indication of the severity," Hales said.
He said the city can't move any more money from the rainy day funding, which was drawn down after the 2008 recession but recently rebuilt.
The citizen voice meeting will be at the BCPA from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Wednesday.