Ames City Council voted to approve the adjusted budget and set March 10 as the date of the final public hearing.
The Council clarified its motion regarding the growth scenarios for the Ames Plan 2040. In January, the Council voted to accommodate projected Ames growth in emphasizing Tier 1 developments in all directions and Tier 2 developments in the South and West area of the city.
Due to a misunderstanding, the Council had to reevaluate and clarify the motions made in January before moving on to the next scenario.
“The way I’ve seen the tiers broken out was always Southwest separate from South and West, and that’s how I understood it in the original vote,” said Ward 4 Rep. Rachel Junck. “That’s kind of my similar thought now would be to support west growth of north of Highway 30.”
The Council voted to approve the clarification the language from January’s meeting and focused it to Tier 2 development in West Ames north of Highway 30.
The Council also voted to approve the 2020-2025 Capital Improvements Plan, the adjusted budget plans and to host a public hearing Feb. 25 to adopt a maximum city property tax levy for the 2020-21 fiscal year.
The proposed budget, subject to change in the future, has estimated expenditures of $263,300,236 in order to fund the wide variety of services broken down to 32.3 percent on utilities, 25.1 percent on Capital Improvements Plan, 9 percent on public safety, 8.2 percent on transportation, 8.4 percent on internal services, 7.6 percent on debt service, 6.6 percent on community enrichment and 2.9 percent on general government.
Ward 1 Rep. Gloria Betcher, said she was confused with the precision regarding the downtown Ames budget.
“It feels like every year we get the Main Street numbers and they’re remarkably imprecise in the way they show up in the grants,” Betcher said. “So I’m struggling to understand the precision which those numbers are presented as I struggle every year with that proposal. I don’t know, I guess I just can’t reconcile that with the efforts to try to be more data-driven about decision making.”
Betcher made the motion to increase the Ames Historical Society and Ames History Museum budget; Betcher, At-Large Rep. Amber Corrieri and At-Large Rep. Bronwyn Beatty-Hansen supported the motion while Ward 2 Rep. Tim Gartin, Junck and Ward 3 Rep. David Martin did not, causing the motion to fail.
The meeting took place at 5:15 p.m. Tuesday in the Council Chambers at Ames City Hall.