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New ward map and budget hearing on Board’s agenda

By Randy Bell

Clinton is finally getting new ward lines after a two-month delay. The Board of Aldermen will vote at its September 5 meeting on a reconfiguration that was necessitated by a shift in the City’s population. The Board has been looking at several possibilities for months.

It was poised to vote in July, but agreed to hold off after local NAACP officials asked for more time to submit their own ward map proposal. They told the Board they wanted ward lines that better reflected the City’s demographics.

Also at the September 5 meeting, Mayor Phil Fisher will present a proposed $24 million budget to guide City spending in the next fiscal year, and the public will have a chance to provide some input.

“The Board of Aldermen and I have worked hard to provide the equipment and other needs, so that the department heads can accomplish the goals they set for the City,” says Fisher. “Intense discussions were held over many items in the budget to assure that tax dollars are being spent effectively and efficiently.”

The proposal includes three per cent pay raises for City employees, with salary increases ranging from ten per cent to eighteen per cent for some department heads. Increasing property values are expected to generate an additional half-million dollars in tax revenue, even though the millage rate will stay the same. The Board will vote on the budget September 12.

Those who attend the September 5 meeting or watch the live stream on the City’s Facebook page can also hear Clinton Public School District Superintendent Dr. Andy Schoggin discuss the school district’s budget for the new fiscal year.

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