City receives positive audit, Parks and Rec Master Plan update
CRAIG — The city of Craig received a positive audit regarding the city’s overall finances for 2017 on Tuesday, Aug. 14.
Adams Group senior auditor Jim Rae said that, overall, the city’s financials are fairly positive, adding that the city’s documentation of its finances were well done.
According to Rae, the city’s total net position was $42,690,000 at the end of December 2017, up $813,000 from December 2016. Rae characterized Craig’s revenue as fairly normal and consistent with years past, though he did caution the Craig City Council that greater reserves are needed to ensure adequate funding for infrastructure projects.
The general fund is becoming healthier, Rae said, with funds to last about 207 days, compared 195 days at the close of 2016. He said that, ideally, a city should retain enough money to fund operations for 180 days, in case of an emergency.
“The city is doing what it should be doing, given the economic times,” Rae said. “The city has shown good stewardship.”
City Council also received an update on the Parks & Recreation Department’s Master Plan from Logan-Simpson, which was hired by City Council in January to update the Parks, Recreation, Open Space and Trails Master Plan..
The plan is currently in Phase 2, Logan-Simpson representative Jana McKenzie said, which entails setting a vision, developing goals, and making choices accordingly. The planning process is being partially guided by the results of an online survey which sought to gauge public opinion about the city’s parks and recreational options, however, McKenzie acknowledged the survey was not scientific.
According to the results, respondents said they are not spending much time at the parks due to missing amenities, maintenance issues, a lack of public restrooms, and accessibility issues with some walking paths. McKenzie further noted there aren’t enough different types of recreation in Craig, adding the public feels more can be done to offer a greater variety of recreational opportunities.
Conversely, the survey indicated people are largely satisfied with special events held at city parks.
McKenzie suggested the city consider budgeting for recreational projects in the future, saying such projects can go a long way in helping the city grow and attracting more people to come to Craig. Logan-Simpson plans to conduct a second online survey soon to collect more information.
“It is worth improving Loudy-Simpson,” McKenzie said. “There is a lot of potential there.”
In other business, the city:
• Approved a $95,300 purchase of 54 new handheld radios for city crews and police. The radios will be purchased from CNC Technical Services.
• Approved a bid from Precision LLC to resurface the tennis courts on Lincoln Street. The company bid $20,110 for the job, besting a bid from Renner Sports for $31,400.
• Approved renewing liquor licenses for Thunder Rolls Bowling Center and Eastside Liquor.
4:19 a.m. On the 900 block of Industrial Avenue, police in Craig responded to a state parks related incident. Craig police said someone was looking around a business with flashlights, but police found the business secure and no crime had been committed.