|I’m not going to rehash everything that has occurred internationaly, nationally or at the state level related to Covid-19 over the past 6 weeks, but I would like to take a moment to identify some local Spring Hill changes and action items.
While much of Spring Hill experienced alternative work environments, Spring Hill’s Police and Fire continued to remain busy. Spring Hill allocated additional funding to both departments to ensure all necessary PPE remained available to both departments, as well as additional funding necessary to cover needed overtime due to sick leave or other absences.
In accordance with Governor Lee’s orders, the City did close both City parks and the library. Many students rely on the library for internet access, and with both Maury and Williamson County schools closed, a substantially higher number of students are accessing their educational materials remotely. The City has parked multiple patrol cars around the City containing no charge WiFi hotspots to ensure all students have internet access.
Many of you have likely experienced additional video conferencing recently. Thanks again to one of Governor Lee’s orders, Spring Hill has forgone in person public meetings in favor of virtual meetings . While in person public meetings certainly offer improved transparency, virtual meetings have allowed work to continue. Do not expect virtual meetings to continue any more than absolutely necessary.
Both Maury and Williamson county have drive through testing locations. You can find more information for Maury here and more information from Williamson here.
Some early information suggests that consumer spending at the Crossings and other shopping areas in Spring Hill is down by around 40%. This is a huge hit to our local sales tax revenues, and a huge hit to our locally owned businesses. Approximately 32% of Spring Hill’s total tax dollars come from sales taxes – a 40% reduction would be a massive blow. We’re anticipating a pretty learn budget beginning July 1.
Many of our locally owned small businesses have struggled during this time. Whenever you can, please shop locally . Your not only keeping your tax dollars local, but your helping your neighbors earn a living and pay their bills.
Fiscal Year 2018-2019 Audit
As required by state law, the City has an independent audit conducted annually of the City’s finances.
As Chair of the Budget and Finance Committee, I’m happy to announce that the auditors only found two issues within the City’s finances, both of which were already known and both of which have already been corrected.
The first issue identified was related to the tracking of assets and recording depreciation. Work to complete this asset management was already underway, but not yet completed, when the audit was performed. This work has since been completed and will not be an issue on future audits.
Unfortunately the second issue was related to theft. The City had previously identified the occurrence of the theft and took all appropriate legal steps to correct the issue. The individual involved did pay full restitution to the City and was also found guilty on criminal charges. Nonetheless, this remained an audit finding.
You can find a complete copy of the audit in this link along with all of the financial statements in this link .
|Portway Dr & Pratt Rd Re-Zones
|A pair of re-zone requests were denied in April, following recommendations for denial from the Planning Commission in March.
A property on Pratt Rd was requested to be re-zoned from agriculture to Commercial Gateway Mixed Use. The property is located to the east of I-65, and will be home to the new Buckner Rd interchange. Commercial Gateway Mixed Use is most certainly the appropriate zoning for a property that has an interchange, however it’s too early to re-zone the property prior to group breaking on the interchange. I would fully expect this request to be made again in the future – and likely pass next time around.
The Portway Drive property will remain zoned R-2, which matches the surrounding properties.
Spring Hill April 2021 Election
It’s a year away – but worth mentioning now, Spring Hill will be electing a new Mayor and four new Aldermen next April.
Current Mayor Rick Graham has signaled that he will not run for re-election. For the first time in 8 years, Spring Hill will have a new Mayor next April.
Aldermen Gavigan, Graves, Fuqua and Wurth’s terms are expiring. They are all eligible to run for re-election.
To be eligible to run for either Mayor or Alderman, you simply need to be 18 years old by election day and reside in Spring Hill for at least one year prior to the election. So if you live in Spring Hill now and will be 18 by April 2021, you’re eligible.
If your reading this newsletter – you have at least minimal interest in Spring Hill government. Maybe running for office is right for you. Or maybe it’s not. Either way, make plans to vote, to educate yourself on who the candidates are, what they stand for, and who will help move Spring Hill forward in a positive way.
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