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Victoria approved sales tax development budget

By Bianca Montes
Sept. 17, 2013 at 4:17 a.m.


The ongoing downtown water and sewer line replacement program received additional funding Tuesday.

The $5,096,236 needed for construction and engineering in stages three and four of the project were unanimously approved at Tuesday's City Council meeting. The project is in its fourth year.

The funding is part of the Victoria Sales Tax Development Corporation's $13.9 million of anticipated funds available projects in the 2013-14 fiscal year.

The corporation is responsible for spending the voter-approved half-cent sales tax on projects that promote economic development, said president Lewis Neitsch.

The utility replacement projects include replacing water and sewer lines, street work, new street signs and improvements to sidewalks, curbs and gutters.

The 10-year project has an estimated budget of $42 million, Lynn Short, director of public works, said last year.

The approved projects from stages three and four will replace water mains and replace or rehabilitate sewer mains in portions of several downtown streets, including Main, Stayton and North streets.

Neitsch said the downtown utility lines were put in during the 1930s and 1940s and should have been replaced 20 years ago.

"That half a cent sales tax does a lot of good for the residents in Victoria, especially those who pay property tax," he said.

The $8.7 million needed for city projects, Neitsch said, would have cost property taxpayers about 24 cents per $100 of property valuation had the city paid for the work needed.

Other projects proposed by the fund include $1 million to clean and repaint water tower No. 5, $350,576 for a traffic signal at the intersection of Carriage Point and Mockingbird Lane and $335,000 for costs related to the construction of Fire Station No. 6 on Ball Airport Road.

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