Auburn citizens vote on improvement projects

By Chris Vessell bio | email

AUBURN, AL (WTVM) - The city of Auburn is giving people the chance to vote for or against a laundry list of city building and road improvements. A portion of the city's property taxes are placed in a fund known as the Special Five Mill Tax Fund, each year. The public is then allowed to vote on whether they want to use that fund to make proposed improvements.

"Just recently we've done an expansion of the library using these funds," Gene Dulaney, Ward 7 Councilman said.

The entire package of improvements are expected to cost $9 million dollars. City Councilman Gene Dulaney says the Five Mill Tax Fund is especially beneficial in hard economic times, because the money is already set aside. "The one that affects my Ward the most is the widening and improvement project for Moores Mill Bridge over the interstate and improvements to Moores Mill Road," Dulaney said.

The projects were chosen based on citizen input received in the city's Annual Citizen Survey in addition to the council's priorities. "It's a great tool that the council uses to determine what the citizens really want, what's in their minds, and in instances like this what they'd like to see their tax dollars do," Bill Hamm, Mayor of Auburn said.

City officials are emphasizing that they're not proposing any new taxes through this special election. "There are no new taxes, we've been doing this over thirty years and a lot of good projects have happened in the city of Auburn for it," Hamm said.

City officials say they will not know the exact cost of each project until bids are made, and bond rates are set. However, if approved, the city will start working on at least six of the twelve projects.