This week, the Shelton City Commission decided not to continue with two projects: Downtown Creek Sidewalk Project and Evergreen Safe Routes to School. This makes three projects halted by the City in the past month. On December 1, the Commission decided to stop work on the SR-3 Park & Ride and Pear Orchard project. The following is an update from the City on the latest projects stopped by the Commissioners:
In recent months, City staff have worked to untangle numerous projects that have been stalled for years, and provide City Commissioners with options for moving toward a financially responsible future. On Monday, Shelton City Commissioners unanimously voted to halt two projects, and return grant money to Local Programs, a branch of WSDOT that distributes federal grant money to municipalities. Based upon the decision, the City will return all remaining federal funds, and pay back $63,456.83 that has been used to this point on the Downtown Creek project.
Commissioners have made it clear that maintaining the City’s ability to obtain grants is a vital concern. With this in mind, staff have begun work with state granting agencies to restore Shelton’s reputation. The first step in that process is having an honest conversation about why projects were not completed as promised. That conversation includes an admission that some project plans were incomplete, some project cost estimates missed their targets, some grant awards were never going to cover actual project costs, and some projects did not solve priority concerns. The City is committed to breaking the habit of receiving a grant, only to shelve the project until a funding agency demands action.
The next step to restore our City’s reputation is developing a plan with attainable goals. Establishing a vision and setting priorities based on the needs of Shelton citizens will be the focal point of the City’s work in early 2017. In the upcoming months, City staff will work with stakeholders throughout the community, and establish partnerships to make successful project completions the expectation instead of the exception.
Below is a breakdown of the two projects discussed on Monday:
|Downtown Creek Sidewalk Project (Grant Funded 2007)||Evergreen Safe Routes to School (Grant Funded 2013)|
|Federal Funds Used to Date:||$63,456.83||$0.00|
|Federal Funds Remaining:||$436,847.00||$469,700.00|
|Unplanned Funds Needed to Complete:||$407,216.00||$467,840.00|
|Total Estimated Project Cost:||$907,519.83||$937,540.00|