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Council to Consider Resolution for City Reimbursement of Rec Complex Expenditures; Approve Three for Service on Zoning Appeals Board

By Julie Perine on February 09, 2018 via Connect-Bridgeport.com

For the past few weeks, Bridgeport City Council has met regularly to discuss plans for the forthcoming sports and recreation complex, which will feature both indoor and outdoor amenities. Mayor Andy Lang said those ongoing meetings – also attended by the project architect – have been very productive.
 
“We are absolutely making great progress and we’re hoping to be able to share some information with the public by mid-March,” he said.
Discussion has included proposed potential amenities, such as basketball courts, swimming pool, multi-use fields and indoor track, among others.
Monday night, Council will consider a resolution stating reasonable expectation of the city to be reimbursed for capital expenditures in connection with that complex. The capital expenditures deal with the acquisition, construction, furnishing and equipping of the new complex prior to the issuance of tax-exempt tax revenue bonds by the city.
 
“This is more of a formality,” Lang said. “If the city has paid out any expenses, it can be reimbursed from the sales tax fund.”
 
A one percent sales tax, earmarked for the facility and implemented in July 2016, is only to be used for the development of the new proposed recreation complex.
 
“That is its sole purpose,” Lang said. “So, this resolution has to be in place to allow us to transfer money to the general fund.”
 
The recreation complex project is also being funded by a bond funding mechanism – up to $35 million – which was previously approved by Council.
 
Also on Monday night’s agenda is the appointing of members to the city’s board of zoning appeals. Up for reappointment for a term of three years are Meredith McCarthy and Sam Spatafore, with Richard Forren up for a first-time term, also of three years. A member of the board recently resigned due to other responsibilities and Forren is being recommended to fill that spot, Lang said.
 
“Richard had volunteered a while back, saying that if something came up – an engineering-type position – he would be glad to help out the city,” Lang said.
 
Forren is a senior project architect with Omni Associates. He and his wife Meredith live in Bridgeport.
The Board of Zoning Appeals comes into action when a request for rezoning is made and the city elects not to allow that variance, Lang explained.
 
“In that case, the person (making the rezoning request) has a right to appeal it,” he said. “It’s a separate board from the zoning board … It is only brought together when there is an actual appeal for a request.”
 
Also coming before Council Monday night will be a proclamation supporting West Virginia energy production, transmission and end use to encourage economic development and a healthier environment.
 
Reverend Jim Lang of Bridgeport United Methodist Church will open Monday night’s meeting in prayer. The session begins 7 p.m. in Council Chambers at Bridgeport City Hall. 



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