Council approves first reading

Bamberg City Council members gave unanimous first reading approval to a proposed fiscal year 2010-2011 budget of $1,901,217. The 2010-2011 budget is a decrease of $35,147 from last year’s budget and represents a 1.8 percent decrease overall.

The budget calls for no millage increase due to a millage cap and no use of reserve funds to balance the budget. No cost of living raises for employees is included in the budget due to the Consumer Price Index for the City of Bamberg being zero. Council members were quick to note that no jobs were lost because of the budget.

On the revenue side of the proposed 2010-2011 City of Bamberg budget commercial garbage customers will see an increase of $10 per dumpster per month on four, six and eight yard containers. The cost for commercial customers will increase from $114 to $124 per month. Residential customers will see garbage rates increase of .50 cents per month from $12 to $12.50. On the expense side, the City of Bamberg will see 10.3 percent increase in the employer share of health insurance. It was also noted that the overall premium the city pays for its employees will be reduced.

Also during the meeting:

• Council members approved first reading of Ordinance 10-2 adopting newly revised technical codes for the City of Bamberg. It was noted that this Ordinance basically puts the city of Bamberg in-line with any new state codes and prevents the City from having to go back every few years to adopt changes.

• Council members gave first reading approval to Ordinance 10-3 establishing new user fees for garbage collection in the City. Under the proposed Ordinance, rates for commercial customers will increase $10.00 per month per dumpster from $114 to $124 per month. Residential garbage customers will see a .50 cent per month increase from $12 to $12.50.

• Council members heard a report from Fire Chief Timmie Taylor who reported that the department was able to purchase a new generator that originally sold for $962.00 for half price at $481.00. Council member Nancy Foster commented that “the fire department always comes in under budget. They rarely ask for anything. We tried to accommodate them with a few things,” Foster said.

• Council members heard a report from Council member Nancy Foster who reported that softball and baseball were “going full blast” at the Ness Sports Complex. Council member Teresa Hannibal asked Foster for an update on the basketball courts at the complex. Foster stated: “We haven’t met, have been working on the budget, haven’t worked on the basketball courts. I have engaged some people to get back with me on some different scenarios. I don’t have anything on that. When I hear something from the committee, we will have a meeting and bring something back,” Foster said.

• Council heard a report from Police Chief George Morris concerning loud noise on Bamberg Street in the City and reports of young people with their pants sagging. The Chief was asked if an individual with their pants sagging could be cited for indecent exposure. “If it goes that far we can, we don’t have an Ordinance in the City on the height of wearing pants. Only if something is exposed, then we can charge them with indecent exposure”. In regard to the loud noise on Bamberg Street the Chief said, “We do have a good many for loud radios that come to court.”