Landfill profits to boost economic development | NevadaAppeal.com

Landfill profits to boost economic development

Dave Frank
Appeal Staff Writer

Most profits from fee increases at the city landfill will be available for business projects starting this week.

Some of the more than $1 million a year generated from fee increases for out-of-city Carson City Sanitary Landfill users could also go to city department projects or to a budget reserve fund, but economic development will be the priority.

City supervisors approved the increase in June 2006 and in October this year approved using the profits for economic development.

The city already promised $2 million of the profits to the owner of the now-vacant Wal-Mart building to help bring in Burlington Coat Factory, which will open early next year.

Supervisor Shelly Aldean said the board of supervisors voted to use the profits from the landfill rather than use them to reduce landfill fees because the fees are reasonable and economic development is important for the city.

“There’s money in garbage,” she said.

City Manager Linda Ritter said in her proposal to use the profits for economic development that the city has “partnered with the private sector to ensure implementation of key projects that are critical to the overall financial health of the city.”

City Manager Linda Ritter will present an update on city finances at the supervisor’s meeting Thursday. The city is trying to deal with a shortfall in sales tax revenue, which has dropped almost 5 percent from September 2006 to September 2007.

Departments have tried to save already by doing things such as leaving vacant positions unfilled, Ritter has said. That, she said, has helped to cut spending about $1.5 million last fiscal year and about $466,000 so far this fiscal year, which started in July.

Departments have also delayed projects that would have cost millions of dollars. Projects include security upgrades for the court house, repairs on park equipment and plans for a new animal shelter.

Those projects could continue to be delayed if they don’t get additional funding from surpluses such as money that may or may not be available from the landfill profits.

“Does it now mean that because of our financial position that we might be able to address all of our capital programs because of the drop in sales taxes?” Mayor Marv Teixeira said.

“Absolutely it’s going to have an impact on it. There’s no getting around it.”

• Contact reporter Dave Frank at dfrank@nevadaappeal.com or 881-1212.