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Financing of two projects pulled from Council agenda

Two multimillion-dollar projects got most of the attention of the City Council on Monday.

In a workshop session prior to the regular meeting, Council members discussed whether to finance a new water project and a seawall reconstruction. Council President A.J. Dolce suggested that finance motions be pulled from the agenda until the members had a clear idea of how the projects would be funded.

The work on the seawall at Lakefront Boulevard is expected to cost $3.45 million. Tony Gugino, the director of the city's Department of Public Works, said he was prepared to award a bid for the seawall project.

The matter is expected to be on the agenda for the Aug. 16 meeting.

The second bond resolution, for $1.8 million for improvements to the water system, also was pulled from the agenda. Gugino said the funding would pay for needed improvements to keep the system in compliance with state Health Department requirements. He said action will be required before Sept. 6.

Mayor Richard Frey said the water improvement project probably will require a rate increase to cover the cost. The matter will be on the Finance Committee agenda next week.

In other business:

*City Attorney Michael Cerrie provided copies of an audit of city records to Council members and key city employees. The audit reveals that the city has a surplus in several areas, including a surplus of $486,105 in the general fund in 2010. The city had a deficit of more than $500,000 in that account for the same time frame in 2009. Increases in the water fund and in overall assets were also noted by the auditors, Johnson Mackowiak and Associates.