Two projects look to receive green light from Muscatine City Council

The Muscatine City Council will conduct two public hearings Thursday, the first on the next two phases of the West Hill Sanitary and Storm Sewer Separation Project, and the second on setting the maximum tax dollars for certain tax levies for the Fiscal Year 2023/2024 Budget.

The City Council will meet at 6 p.m. Thursday (April 6) in the Council Chambers at Muscatine City Hall. The public is welcomed, and encouraged, to attend the meeting in person. A virtual option is available for citizens who do not want to attend in-person. Information on joining the virtual session through the GoToMeeting portal is listed below. 

The City Council session will also be broadcast live on the City of Muscatine YouTube channel and on Civic-TV (Muscatine Power & Water Cable Channel 2).

Two proclamations will be made by Muscatine Mayor Brad Bark including declaring April 6, 2023, as Junior Achievement Day, and the week of April 9-15, 2023, as Telecommunicators Week.

Phase 6 of the West Hill Sewer Separation Project will include sanitary and storm sewer installation with separation of sanitary sewer from the Papoose Creek tunnel. Work will be on Sycamore Street from 8th Street to Fulliam Avenue, Iowa Avenue from 10th Street to Fulliam Avenue, and Fulliam Avenue from Iowa Avenue to Sycamore Street. New water mains will also be a part of the project with repaving of the streets to follow the completion of the underground work.

A resolution approving the plans and specifications for Phase 6A and Phase 6B will be voted on later in Thursday’s meeting. If approved, the bid documents will be released on April 7 with bids opened on May 9 and the project awarded on June 1. A construction schedule will be determined during a pre-construction meeting with the contractor later in June.

All cities in Iowa are required by the State of Iowa to pass a resolution establishing their maximum property tax dollars for certain levies prior to adoption and certification of the final budget. The second public hearing Thursday is on the proposed maximum tax levy for 2023/2024. This maximum levy only includes the General, Transit, Tort Liability/Insurance, Emergency, and employee benefits levies. The tax dollars from those levies are $13,934,443 in the FY 23-24 budget compared to $12,992,776 in the FY 22-23 budget.

While the total property tax rate has been reduced 1.87 percent (to $15,67219 per $1,000 of valuation), an 8.36 percent increase in taxable valuations will result in a 6.65 percent increase ($1,009, 751) in property tax dollars. The maximum tax dollars for the tax levies considered in the public hearing will be a 7.65 percent increase ($941,667) over the FY 22-23 budget.

A resolution approving the maximum tax dollars for certain tax levies for the FY 23-24 budget will be voted on later in Thursday’s meeting.

Also on the agenda are resolutions setting public hearings on April 20 for the FY 23-24 budget, Amendment #1 to the FY 22-23 budget, and on declaring Tom Bruner Field as surplus and authorizing the sale to the Muscatine Community School District.

The Council will also be asked to accept a $1.738 million grant from the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) for the Mulberry Neighborhood Project. This pilot project was developed to focus on revitalizing an area that is near downtown, has a high visibility impact, and can be replicated by other communities. 

The Muscatine Neighborhood Project will be completed over a three-to-five-year period with a $22 million budget.  Items to be funded include living street improvements, street lighting, sidewalks, bikeway trail, trees, pocket park, expanding internet access, commercial façade improvements, exterior housing repairs, acquisition and clearance of nuisance properties, and Community Development Block Grant administration.

Another project that is awaiting City Council approval on Thursday is the installation of a sidewalk connector from Sunset Housing to the back side of the Muscatine Soccer Complex, across the Muscatine Slough, and connecting with the Kent Stein Trail Kent Stein Park.

The Kent Stein trail connector is part of the Community Foundation of Greater Muscatine South End Improvement Fund Projects. If approved, The Henley Group will complete the installation of an asphalt trail connector from Kent Stein Park to the Muscatine Soccer Complex, and CR Landscape will complete the sidewalk connector from Sunset Housing to the Kent Stein Connector. 

Information on the other agenda items can be found by clicking AGENDA to download a PDF version of the City Council agenda and/or attachments. 

On-Line Participation

To view or participate virtually, click on the link below or call in to the GoToMeeting. Be sure to mute your computer, laptop, tablet or smartphone (press *6 when using phone or mute button on computer). At the appropriate time, you will be able to unmute your device to ask a question or make a comment. The public can also use the “chat” feature on GoToMeeting to pose a question to the Mayor, Council, or staff member. Those wishing to speak should use the chat box to post a message that will be seen by the Mayor who will address the questions or call on the speaker in turn. Those using their phones must wait until the Mayor asks for additional comments. The mayor will recognize you prior to you addressing the Council.

Muscatine City Council Meeting | Thursday, April 6, 2023 | 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM (CDT)

Join the meeting from your computer, laptop, tablet or smartphone by clicking the following link:

You can also use your phone by dialing +1 (669) 224-3412, follow the prompts, and type in Access Code 970-499-597 when prompted.

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