What are the drawbacks of approving the Indoor pool funding in advance of the yearly city budget preparation?

While the city discusses options for their DT Trolley system, that was shelved since the Federal money ran dry (saving taxpayers about 140K a year) the mayor’s office is proposing going full steam ahead on an indoor pool.

But are they?

If you look at item #57, the appropriation to be put forth for an Indoor Pool, you will find a distinct difference between the MEMO and the ACTUAL appropriation ordinance document. In the memo, it says the money will go towards the PARKS & RECREATION Department AND;

This funding will be used to complete the funding of the indoor aquatics facility at Spellerberg Park.

But when you read the actual ordinance for the appropriation, NO mention of an indoor pool OR Spellerberg;

That the following fund is supplemented as listed below:

MOU/Division, Parks and Recreation

Funding Source, Sales/Use Tax Fund (unobligated fund balance)

Amount, $11,180,776

I find it a bit odd that they would just appropriate the money to a ‘general’ division without specifying what the money is for. Yes, in the memo it is mentioned, but not in the ordinance itself.

What does this mean? Not sure, it could mean that the Parks & Rec department has a lot of wiggle room with what they can do with the money, and secondly, it certainly doesn’t nail down the Spellerberg location, or does it? Without any resistance from the public or council.

Maybe that is the nature of this beast, without mentioning Spellerberg in the ordinance, it may give the power to the Parks board and director to go hog wild on picking a location and what can be spent and designed for Spellerberg, leaving the council almost completely out of the process, except for approving the funding. Once again, the council would be in the dark, and they would have done it to themselves.

Of course the city would be foolish to spend the appropriation on anything BUT an indoor pool (the voters want one). But the council truly needs to amend this ordinance so they have a final say in location and design of an indoor pool.

My other observation is why are we jumping the gun on this appropriation, especially when it is pretty vague and general? Why not stuff this $11 million in with the budget coming up? The concern is tying up this $11 million dollar in an advance appropriation before the council and mayor have had a chance to prepare the budget for next year.

That’s $11 million we could spend on a lot of different things we may actually NEED (like police officers or new sewer lines) versus things we may WANT.

Normal operating procedure at Carnegie and City Hall once again.



8 comments ↓

#1 Dan Daily on 05.02.14 at 2:54 pm

I feel 9 mil outdoor pool repairs at Spellerburg was a smokescreen to sell an indoor pool for 11 mil. They included expansion and new features when about 200k was the cost of repairs only.

I predict repairs will be made at Spellerburg. If they try anything else, it’s federal land and they’ll forfeit any use there.

This whole subject is a back door way for the city to build an 11 mil indoor pool (+ 3 mil overrun) northwedt near the Sanford Sports Complex and the new indoor tennis facility.

Basically, the mayor wants easy access into tennis & swimming from his lake shore home near Madison.

#2 Dan Daily on 05.02.14 at 3:06 pm

With indoor sports easy access from I-29 & I-90, it’s the start of another Meadowlands like for New York professional sports teams. The Sanford hotel & bar out there will always be busy. Land surrounding the area (owned by insiders) will appreciate and the area will become a new entertainment district to replace downtown & Louise St..

#3 85th stuckee on 05.02.14 at 9:09 pm

Scott, they don’t have to disclose anything any longer. They only want to entertain us, sports complexes, I’m surprised they the city hasn’t funded a casino yet. Don’t forget that Kelo has been paving the way with the low income rent backlog of low income folks waiting to get on the list while those whose income is much higher get the rental units. That cost in sioux Falls is 11,000,000 per year. I can see RMB, the mayor, Lloyd properties petitioning the council to seek approval from the state to raise the rent for all by at least a factor of 3 to $33,000,000 since they are building all these rentals units for the young professionals as the RMB spoksperson said for the rezone at 85th and western. Now, with Kelolands introduction of a big news story which is BS problem, those folks can’t be without decent housing can they? Sound too good to be true. The 11,000,000 that was in the argus a while back I think, the city doesn’t plan on paying back the loans for the levy repairs that the fed reimbursed them for, only making interest payments. No intent to pay the principle off. Watch the debt skyrocket.

#4 85th stuckee on 05.02.14 at 10:21 pm

From my previous post the factor of 3 will be for an extra 3600 families who need aid. Currently 1800 families or households avg $500 month aid. I’m sure mmm can convince state or Obama to cough it up to provide a good return on his investments.

#5 Sammy on 05.04.14 at 1:42 pm

Stuckee: I understand what you are saying about not disclosing any longer. But you lost me after that. For those of not as savy on, exactly, what you are talking, could you be a little clearer? Can’t put together the Kelo stuff, income based housing, developers, and 85th & Western. Far as I am concerned, the developers could just as well sit in the council chairs for the meetings–we’d get the real picture then.

#6 anonymous on 05.05.14 at 6:00 am

Sammy on 05.04.14 at 1:42 pm

Far as I am concerned, the developers could just as well sit in the council chairs for the meetings–we’d get the real picture then.

Sammy, Thank You for stating Sioux Falls Reality With Such Clarity!

#7 Poly43 on 05.05.14 at 6:05 am

They only want to entertain us…

You got that right. At the present time there are over 3500 households in SF on a waiting list for SF Housing. Not only will those waiting be wondering where there next meal is coming from, but those fortunate enough to already be on it have seen the program skimmed of a million dollars just this year. 1 million dollars of much need assistance….gone. 1 million dollars of money that already cash strapped households cannot replace.

SNAP is also being cut. Paratransit? The same. But $150 event tickets for the 1%? You bet.

#8 85th stuckee on 05.05.14 at 7:05 am

Hi Sammy. That’s it. Sorry to ramble. I have never seen a group seduced by greed as this council. The mayor has done probably the most damage to a democracy. All marketing. Anytime kelo or argus has a news feed like the low income housing shortage. We find the mayor already has a fix. I think they await his direction on the news to present. Will we get to know when the debt doubles again. Doubt it unless city employees blow the whistle on the mayor.