The Grand Island City Council's Tuesday evening meeting has on its agenda the passing of the budget for fiscal 2012 - 2013. A central issue for the meeting is funding for the Grand Generation senior center.
The council is just about out of time to pass a budget in regular session, as any budget passed must be published for public inspection for fifteen days before going into effect on October 1, the start of the City of Grand Island's new fiscal year.
Part of the budget has been earmarked for the hiring of five new Grand Island Police patrol officers, officers recommended by a city-commissioned safety study (by ICMA), officers that police officials say could help transform the Grand Island Police Department's style of law enforcement.
"ICMA recognized it too, and said we need to move to strategic policing; we need some resources to get there. And these five officers are part of that, a good part of, of what ICMA recommended to allow us to get started. With these initial five officers plus some other changes in some civilian positions, we would hope before the end of this budget year to launch into a strategic policing mode, but it's going to take a while to get everyone trained, hired, mobilized, and up and running," GIPD Chief Steve Lamken said.
As for the Grand Generation senior center, two measures are in play.
The first is an allocation of $100,000 for the upcoming year. The second is a proposal that the Grand Generation Center's management will have to come to the city council in the future with budgets that can request up to $100,000 annually, but for capital improvements only.
"The city, county, and officials from the board of directors at the Grand Generation Center sat down and met and discussed this issue about capital improvements and necessary funding needed for that at the Grand Generation Center, and whether or not the city would provide ongoing support for those capital improvements," stated City Attorney Bob Sivick.