Gardner has spent more than $150,000 in consultant studies year to date.
At the June 3 council meeting, members approved a solar feasibility study for $15,000 and $43,000 to decommision/repurpose/study the existing police station on West Main.
During the discussion Randy Gregorcyk, councilmember, expressed concerns about the need for additional studies, indicating that without counting the solar and GPD studies, Gardner had spent $146,245 to date in 2019, and more than $344,000 in 2018.
“That’s a lot of money wrapped up just in study,” Gregorcyk said, according to the minutes. “Some of it is important, because we are not content experts, but that’s a lot of money wrapped up.”
Information he exhibited during the meeting indicated a total cost of $724,540; with $344,316 being spent in 2018.
Steve Shute, mayor, asked Matthew Wolff, finance director, how the budget is holding and if this (solar) study was budgeted.
Wolff said it wasn’t budgeted, but money is in the electric fund, and that fund has a large balance.
Shute said this came in under the city administrator spending authority, but the reason it came before council was to have discussion. Spending authority for the administrator is $25,000.
According to the minutes, Shute said he doesn’t see any harm in getting this study done.
Other studies include water rates, water supply, chlorine risk, electric, funding capacity update, citizen survey, planning assessment/consulting, pool leak, P & R department, transportation update, municipal airport building; Gardner downtown and Waverly/US 56.