Council to increase minimum penalties for fines

Only parking fines will stay same

The Jefferson City Council is poised to approve a bill to increase a majority of minimum fines within the municipal court.

The bill, which is set to be acted on at the council meeting Monday, increases most fines by about 3 percent at the request of City Prosecutor Brian Stumpe. The only fines not increased in the proposed bill are those related to parking. In a previous meeting, Stumpe had said many of the city’s fines are not high enough to recoup expenses by the city for enforcement and the increase would help make the fines more in line with other area communities.

City attorney Drew Hilpert has said the fee increases could bring in additional funds to general revenue, but there’s no exact calculation as to how much may be brought in.

In other business, a bill to be introduced Monday would authorize a contract with J.C. Industries for a sidewalk project on Ellis Boulevard. The contract, which is for $279,746, would construct a walkway from the existing sidewalk at the roundabout at Tanner Bridge Road to U.S. 54, covering the 300 through 600 blocks of Ellis Boulevard.

The project also would address several storm water complaint issues and make improvements to the bus stop near the YMCA.

Another bill to be introduced Monday would seek to establish a procedure in the city code for grant applications and acceptance.

During budget discussions in March when the city was trying to find ways to make up a $1.68 million shortfall and explain how it happened, staff repeatedly mentioned an issue with budgeting grant funds.

The proposed bill would require council approval of any grant application and require the city administrator to provide specific information when a grant is accepted, such as the amount of the grant, the purpose of the grant, any matching requirements or future obligations tied to accepting the grant, and the revenue and expense account information of the grant funds.

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