Photo/ Adam Louis - Russell Zimmer addresses the Torrington City Council meeting during the public comment and question period Tuesday. Zimmer’s ban from city public meetings and buildings was lifted June 15 before it was to officially end on July 1. Due to court order, no one is allowed to publicly comment on Zimmer’s appeal of the ban.
TORRINGTON – After several work sessions, meetings and a brief discussion, the city’s budget for the coming fiscal year is set.
The Torrington City Council unanimously approved the third and final reading of the city’s budget during Tuesday’s meeting.
Residents Paul Puebla and Russell Zimmer, who were the only residents to sign up to speak at the budget hearing, were given two-and-a-half minutes to comment and question.
Zimmer spoke about the city’s early retirement program and explained his information-gathering process and said the information he found was limited after discussing it with city officials.
Puebla said there was nothing in the budget for a director for the Homesteaders Museum.
“Without a director, we don’t have the museum we should have,” he said.
After Zimmer and Puebla spoke, the council was given the chance to respond to comments and questions. The council did not respond at that time.
Torrington’s budget grew for the coming fiscal year, totaling about $31 million in revenue and cash carryover and $26 million in expenses, according to City Treasurer Lynette Strecker.
In other action:
The council ap-proved the final plat for the Wyoming Housing Network’s apartment complex. The 32-unit complex would be located on the corner of West C Street and College Drive.
City Building Official Dennis Estes said there were no complaints about the plat, and the staff recommended approval.
The council approved a resolution encouraging those who camp at Pioneer Park to voluntarily donate $10 per night for camping services provided by the city.
The council also approved a resolution amending the Fiscal Year 2012 budget to include about $1.6 million in unanticipated revenue and cash reserves.
Councilman Randy Adams updated the council and residents on the status of the Y facility for Goshen County. Adams is a member of a joint powers board formed to explore local recreation facility options.
The Goshen County Community Facilities Joint Powers Board is proceeding with two studies: one would gauge how residents feel a Y-USA would impact their communities, and the second is a feasibility study.
“There is progress,” Adams said. “The people involved are still committed. At this point, it looks like we’re moving forward.”
Adams added the board is hoping to put a bond on the ballot to help pay for the facility. He said it would not likely go to vote for another year.
Mayor Mike Varney said the bids for Torrington’s separate grade crossing project would be awarded Thursday and there may be a few local contractors involved in the project. The separate grade crossing, or overpass, project would create a 1.6-mile stretch of road connecting the 1000 block of Main Street with U.S. Highway 26 near East E Street, increasing traffic flow and minimizing wait time due to trains.
Varney added officials will have a pre-construction meeting June 26. The project is estimated to have a two-year construction period.
Torrington Police Chief Billy Janes encouraged residents to attend Torrington’s National Night Out. It is meant to be a crime prevention activity to bring the community closer together and will include such activities as a movie, flag football and volleyball. This year’s National Night Out is Aug. 21 at Jirdon Park.
The next regular council meeting is July 3 at 7 p.m. at the Lincoln Community Complex.
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