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SF City Council Holds Open Forum

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The Sioux Falls City Council has the authority to make some big decisions and one of the biggest decisions they'll be making in the near future is how to spend the city's $1.8 million dollar surplus.

“The City Council has the authority to authorize that money to be spent at any time, but we do it in a collaborative nature, all together and all at once," said Sioux Falls City Council member, Greg Jamison.

Representing the Southwest District of Sioux Falls, council member Greg Jamison, calls this year's surplus an anomaly. Jamison said most years, the city has a $3 to $4 million surplus. However, without a $1.1 million dollar land sale from the city this year, they would have only around $700,000 left over.

It may be less than in previous years, but Jamison said that isn't necessarily a bad thing.

“It's quite a change and I'm pretty sure it's all about how they managed that process. They just did a better job, a different job, so it didn't accumulate to as much as normal years," said Jamison.

At a town hall meeting on Saturday, council members shared their ideas on how the funds should be allocated, with members of the community.

“There are a lot of projects. There are street repairs all over the city, there are communication systems and equipment needed within the fire department, ADA improvements to the curbs so that people using the transit system can get in and out better. (There are) improvements in buildings, carpet, things like that. It's an endless need," said Jamison.

Jamison said it isn't just up to the city to make the decisions, the community's input is important too.

"They are ones that give us this information that, ‘hey, there is a need here or there's a problem and we want it addressed,’” said Jamison.

With so many ideas of how the funds can be spent, what matters most, Jamison said, is what's best for the city and its residents.

“Sometimes it's a challenge, but it's all for the best improvement of the city," said Jamison.

The City Council will hold a public workshop on Wednesday at Carnegie Town Hall where council members will discuss the list of ideas even further. The meeting will not be an open forum; however, members of the community can contact members of the council at any time to give their input.

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