Lexington Mayor’s Budget Asks For $40 Million In Debt For Rupp Renovation

Lexington Mayor Jim Gray on Tuesday released his proposed $313 million budget for 2015. 

As part of his proposal, Gray wants the city to authorize $40 million in debt for the renovation of Rupp Arena and the adjacent convention center.

Gray said the Urban County Council would have to okay the bonds this year, but wouldn’t have to pay debt payments until 2016.

The Mayor said the overall debt payments would be approximately $2 million a year.

The proposal included a 2-percent pay raise for non-union city employees.

The budget plan also called for the creation of 45 new positions, which included 15 new police officers, 15 correction officers, two new positions in the fire department and three new Enhanced 911 dispatchers.

The Mayor also requested an additional $150,000 for overtime costs in the police department.

The budget called for $8 million for a new senior citizens center at Idle Hour Park.

In all, the budget proposal called for $25 million in new borrowing.

Gray’s plan called for $50,000 for a new education center at the U.K. Arboretum and $50,000 for the preliminary design work on an indoor recreation facility at Woodhill Park.

The budget earmarked $250,000 for the Hope Center’s emergency shelter program.

The proposed overall budget is 5-percent higher than the current budget.

The Urban County Council previously set aside $3.5 million for homeless initiatives and affordable housing in the 2015 budget.

The full council will dissect Mayor Gray’s proposed budget over the next several weeks.

Final passage usually comes by the end of June.

Categories: Local News, News

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