City Council Approves Budgets, Talks Funding

The City Council approved budgets and motions that speak to the growing and changing needs of the community during its June 12 meeting.

The Lebanon community development director presented a proposal for the annexation of a parcel on South K Street, which is within the city’s urban growth boundary, and they recommended it be accepted. The ordinance was approved following a public hearing.

The council passed Resolution No. 2024-10 proposing the adoption of a ballot title and explanatory statement for the resolution, which would place a prohibition on psilocybin-related businesses.

Regarding Resolution No. 2024-12, it’s projected that highway trust fund revenue may fall as Oregon progresses toward higher electric vehicle usage. Cigarette revenue is also falling, as is the state revenue for marijuana tax; liquor revenue is up. According to a state report, Lebanon’s population is estimated at 20,329. The resolution would certify eligibility and decision to receive state revenues. The motion was approved.

The council also passed Resolution No. 2024-13, which certifies that Lebanon complies with laws related to marijuana sales within city limits and allows the city to receive approximately $30,000 in state funding.

Resolution No. 2024-14 and 2024-15 were approved, adopting the City of Lebanon’s budget as well as making appropriations and levying taxes for 2024-25 . The budget for the fiscal year is set to be $87,398,052, including an ending balance of more than $20 million that carries over. The streets fund department sought some budget adjustments, including an extra $75,000 for capital projects.

The council passed Resolution No. 2024-19 amending fees and charges for city services, and repealed Exhibit A “Fee Schedule” from Resolution No. 2022-18.

As the Lebanon Urban Renewal Agency, the council reviewed Resolution No. 2024-16, 2024-17, and 2024-20, which adopted the budget of $2,839,366, appropriations and tax levies, and transferred appropriations; the motion passed.

Resolution No. 2024-21 authorized a transfer of appropriations for the 2023-24 budget, adding $6,500 to the Municipal Court budget for costs associated with appeals and the defense attorney. Water and wastewater staff requested additional budget resources for a new employee and overall insurance changes. The motion passed.

Build Lebanon Trails presented a funding request for the Georgia Pacific Mill Race Trail, which they hope to build this year. BLT requested $25,000 for the trail from the Transient Lodging Tax Fund in April, and has reduced the request to $23,500 following a $1,500 grant. The motion to award the funds was passed, though a council member pointed out there may be future maintenance costs for the trail.

The Gill’s Landing Trail project received six contractor bids. A motion passed to award the bid to Santiam Canyon Excavating, whose bid of $171,175.41 was the lowest by more than $62,000.

Department reports included plans for an Airport Road traffic signal project, which will require road closure. Parking may be removed on the south side of Elmore Street as it doesn’t meet standards for parking on both sides; a letter will be sent to residents of the street, and community members will have the opportunity to have input.

In a May meeting with Representative Jamie Cate, the mayor and other council members had a discussion about needs in Lebanon and how to move forward with funding.

Mayor Kenneth Jackola said the city is taking a more “aggressive” approach to seeking funding for upcoming infrastructure projects.

“We’re a growing city,” Jackola said, “and we need to seek out every asset we can to make sure we provide a livable community that is sustainable and has the infrastructure needed for the growth that will happen in the future.”

The next City Council meeting is scheduled for July 10, and the following Strategic Planning Session is set for July 22.