Reallocated money helps fund paving projects

Published: Aug. 4, 2020 at 4:07 PM CDT
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MERIDIAN, Miss. (WTOK) - Thousands of dollars set aside for the Meridian Police Department were not being used, so the Meridian City Council voted Tuesday to shift those funds to other needs.

Council President Kim Houston said the extra money stems from unfilled officer positions at the department. The council says this is not defunding the police department.

“Instead of those monies just sitting there, we’re going to move those funds into public works, $300,000, so we can begin immediate paving,” said Houston.

The city recently agreed to an up to $12 million bond issue that is expected to help fund infrastructure projects, such as streets.

Public Works Director Hugh Smith said the $300,000 will help in that effort.

“These were monies that were not initially allocated for paving as part of the fiscal 2020 budget so these will be additional dollars that have been re-positioned to buy asphalt,” said Smith.

Smith said crews could begin paving by the end of next week.

“Funding opportunities are critical to our paving program. Without such dollars as these we wouldn’t be able to do the neighborhood paving that we’re talking about,” said Smith.

Smith says it’s unknown which areas of town will undergo the immediate paving improvements.

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