Saturday, July 20, 2024

Williamsburg Notebook: Council Talks Budget in Two Meetings

Budget talks are starting in the city, where City Council will meet twice this week. On Monday, the budgets for the city and schools will be presented to council. On Thursday, citizens are invited to share their opinions on the budget, along with proposed changes to the downtown area’s ordinances.

City Council to Discuss School, City Budgets for 2014

The 2014 budgets for the city of Williamsburg and Williamsburg-James City County Schools will be presented at a Monday work session. Read more about the budget here.

The presentation of the city budget will be the first since it was released on the city’s website on April 1. Superintendent Steve Constantino will present the 2014 proposed budget for WJCC Schools, which have seen increases in the population of city students over the past two years.

Based on the fall daily membership count, the city sent 902 students to WJCC schools. In 2011, the city had 828 students.

The meeting will begin at 4 p.m. in the Stryker Building.

Council to Host Public Hearings on Budget, Downtown Planning Area

City Council will host two public hearings at its Thursday meeting, focused on the implementation of ordinance changes in the downtown planning area and the 2014 proposed budget.

The first public hearing will gather citizen input on the implementation of changes included in the Comprehensive Plan, adopted in December 2012. In the downtown planning area, the new ordinances would increase residential density, creating a base density of 14 dwelling units per acre with no prescribed maximum density. Those seeking to develop a project beyond the base density will have to get a special use permit approved by council.

The ordinance changes also include a plan to rezone South Henry Street between Ireland Street and South Boundary Street from limited business residential to limited business downtown. The change is intended to encourage more business development, which members of the Planning Commission said last month could restore vibrancy to downtown. Read more about their discussion here.

Council will also seek citizen input on the proposed 2014 budget. The $51.6 million budget does not include any tax increases, but would raise the water and sewer rate from $4.55 to $4.80 per 1,000 gallons. The budget also includes 2 percent merit pay increases for city staff, and increases the city salary scale by 2 percent.

Council will meet at 2 p.m. Thursday in the Stryker Building.

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