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Council adopts ‘25 budget

As the public hearing and presentation for the adoption of a city budget for fiscal year 2025 began, Mayor Joe Hardy said, “I believe that requires an initial statement from someone.”

Council member Steve Walton proceeded to read a lengthy disclosure.

“I would like to disclose that, pursuant to NRS 281a that my son, Nigel Walton, is a fire captain for Boulder City Fire Department and this matter seeks direction regarding the fiscal year ‘25 general fund budget. All salaries and benefits have already been determined by a previously-approved collective bargaining agreement and I have previously abstained from voting on that collective bargaining agreement of which my son is a member. Those matters are not decision points before council tonight. There are also three proposed positions for the fire department. I have reviewed this carefully with the city attorney to determine whether a conflict exists and the city attorney has advised me that this is not a matter that would impact the judgement of a reasonable person in my position and I may participate and provide direction on this matter.”

(With overtime pay of $1.14 shy of $68,000 in 2023, Nigel Walton — at $203,484.37 — was the highest paid employee of Boulder City, beating out former city manager Taylour Tedder by about $3,400.)

With any city budget approval, the marquee numbers are always labor costs, and capital improvement funding and plans.

The capital improvement ask was $24.5 million. The short version is that items range from $28,000 for a new blade sharpener for the lawnmowers used by the Public Works staff to $1.6 million to renovate the city shops facility to $4.4 million for currently unspecified improvements to city facilities in the Redevelopment Agency area consisting of the historic downtown as well as some immediately adjacent residential areas.

On the labor side of the equation, all employees covered under a union contract get a 3% increase as called for in their contracts except electrical linemen who are due to get a 6% raise.

Staff also recommended (as Walton alluded to in part), the addition of eight new full-time positions within the city. As previously reported in the Review, this represents a more than 25% increase in the number of full-time city employees in a period covering seven budget years. After staying pretty consistent through most of the decade starting in 2010 at 150-160 full-time staff members, the number started to increase rapidly in 2019. The eight additional positions being sought would bring the full-time head count to 212, which would represent a 32% increase since 2018.

The recommended additional positions include three firefighters, two police dispatchers, an aquatics facilities specialist, a “floating” administrative position within city hall and an apprentice lineman position working in the utilities department.

Considering that approval of the city’s budget is probably the most important thing the council does in any given year, there was very little public comment, as in none. There was also little council discussion on the matter.

The council voted unanimously to accept the fiscal year 2025 budget as presented.

It’s (un)official

“Every vote counts and every vote has not been counted.”

City council to mull recruitment firms

When departing and now former city manager Taylour Tedder was on his way out, he took some steps to try to smooth out the transition to a new city executive in the form of five recruitment firms vying for the call to be hired to conduct a nationwide search for his replacement.

Brown proud to represent BC in Nationals

For those who are into the rodeo scene, you may want to remember the name Aiden Brown in years to come.

Church seeks senior housing

Leaders of the Boulder City United Methodist Church have a project in the works that they feel will benefit many in the community but understand those who may have concerns.

Fancier/foster permit back on city council agenda

If you call in to a city council meeting for public comment twice in one meeting, you officially qualify as a gadfly. (noun: 1) a fly that bites livestock, especially a horsefly, warble fly, or botfly. 2) an annoying person, especially one who provokes others into action by criticism.) Fred Voltz, already quoted in these pages for comments on other issues, also addressed the issue of pet breeding, likening the practice to prostitution or the dealing of narcotics.

Liquor Board approves BC Company Store request

In the 1930s, the original Boulder City Company Store included a “club room.” The city was officially dry until the late 1960s, so booze would not have been officially served. Except it was.

Dollar Tree takes over 99 Cents

Chances are that many will be giving their two-cents worth regarding the news that 99 Cent Only Stores, including the one in Boulder City, have been thrown a lifeline by a former competitor — Dollar Tree.

Master plan to accommodate energy storage

The moves to develop much of the Eldorado Valley for solar energy uses that has brought Boulder City millions of dollars in lease revenue — enough to make it feasible for a city of just 15,000 souls to consider spending upward of $40 million on a new municipal pool complex — took another step forward on May 28 as the city council voted unanimously to amend the master plan and zoning map that would allow for the creation of a battery-based energy storage facility.