Casper City Council Reviews Priorities For Infrastructure, Social Services
Casper City Council will conduct a work session at City Hall, 200 N. David St., at 4:30 p.m. Tuesday to consider the priorities for the estimated $58 million the Optional One-Cent Sales Tax No. 16 will raise if Natrona County voters approve its renewal during the general election Nov. 6.
City residents in the past have wanted major improvements and infrastructure including street repair and equipment for the police and fire departments.
Those will priorities will account for about $52 million in spending, leaving about $6 million available for the government agencies and social service organizations that have requested about $13.8 million.
Last week, representatives of those agencies pitched their requests to the council.
The largest request was from the Casper Area Transportation Coalition for $1.7 million for its fixed route public transit system called The Bus, and its on-demand service called CATC, which is used by people who have no other way to get to work and medical appointments.
Other large requests included $1.5 million for the YMCA's new swimming pool (the YMCA is built on city-owned land), $1 million for the Science Zone to renovate a new building, and $1 million for the Platte River Rails Trust.
Many requests came from agencies that directly serve needy families and the poor, including the Food Bank of the Rockies, Wyoming Food for Thought Project, the Poverty Resistance food pantry, Interfaith, Seton House, and the Self Help Center.
However, the city's legal department already has determined that several organizations will not be considered for funding including the $420,000 request from the Casper Mountain Biathon because that facility is not in the city.
The following are the organizations that appeared before the Casper City Council on Aug. 28, how much they requested either in a one-time payment or four-year total; and the needs whether for building(s), project(s), equipment, materials, and/or staff positions.
You can learn more about the organizations by clicking on the links to their websites.
Self Help Center: $302,000 -- a safe house building; signage; youth coordinator; crisis advocate/case manager; safe house manager.
Casper Mountain Ski Patrol: $3,000 -- $2,500 for a medical patient extraction toboggan; $500 for a cell phone booster.
University of Wyoming Extension of Natrona County: $103,560 -- to match other contributions for the salary for a horticulture educator.
Natrona County Public Library: $800,000 -- to develop the collection of books, reference materials, periodicals, CDs, DVDs, audio books, ebooks; $162,500 to pay for half a new bookmobile.
CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates): $20,000 -- to partially fund the salary for the program manager who recruits and trains volunteers.
Platte River Trails Trust: $1 million -- $200,000 to partially cover overhead costs; $800,000 to leverage other funding for projects including trails in west Casper, towards Casper Mountain, and near the First Street Bridge over the North Platte River.
Mercer Family Resource Center: $190,000 -- to augment salaries and programs for the Youth Empowerment Council, and counseling and facilitator services for parenting/intervention programs.
Children’s Advocacy Project: $160,000 -- to supplement the salaries of forensic interviewers, child and family advocates, training for investigators, community education/outreach/prevention programs, general administration and supplies.
Joshua’s Storehouse: $26,000 -- for supplies and food.
Casper Sports Alliance: $87,250 -- to offset the costs related to hosting sporting events including officials, permits, marketing, awards, bid fees, venue management, equipment, portable toilets, medical and security.
Youth Crisis Center: $329,964 -- for salaries for the case manager, clinical supervisor and kitchen staff; staff training; food; property maintenance; utilities; equipment maintenance; furniture and appliances; and resident clothing, allowances and activities.
CATC (Casper Area Transportation Coalition): $1,712,000 -- $428,000 each year for four years. The Casper City Council decided earlier this year to shift support from the city's general fund to as a local match for funding CATC. The funding would supplement employees salaries and benefits, offer a wage increase, pay for increased costs at the garage; and offer $50,000 for subsidized fares.
National Historic Trails Interpretive Center: $85,000 -- for a new screen for its theater, a redesign and replacement of a Wyoming Map, overhauling the Mormon Handcart exhibit, and update the telegraph gallery.
Cadoma Foundation: $450,000 -- $400,000 would be used to buy the land immediately east of the Bishop House, 818 E. Second St., to enhance access to the historic house and develop the vacant lot. $50,000 would be used for a site development plan.
Greater Wyoming Big Brothers Big Sisters: $270,199 -- to supplement the salaries and benefits of the case manager, community outreach management, enrollment specialist; and supplement communications, facilities, youth activities, and recruitment of families and volunteers.
Child Development Center: $100,000 -- to remodel one of its meeting rooms to have additional therapy and screening space for speech, physical and occupational therapy; and to offset the costs of providing free development screenings to children.
Iris House: $100,000 -- to support the salary of the director.
Interfaith of Natrona County: $240,000 -- to supplement the salaries for the director, and support staff, office rent, emergency services and computer software services.
Casper Family Connections: $203,160 -- over four years to supplement the salaries of a full-time visitation specialist and two part-time visitation specialists.
YMCA of Natrona County: $1.5 million -- for Phase 2 of the capital campaign to build a new swimming pool and some additional program spaces. If city council grants the funding, the YMCA board of directors said that it would not access the funding until it privately raises 70 percent of the rest of the money for the project. The city owns the land.
Natrona County Meals On Wheels: $39,500 -- for a van to transport the pallets of meals.
The Lyric (Citizens for a Civic Auditorium): $715,000 -- $15,000 to replace the rooftop heating and cooling unit that controls the lobby. $700,000 is to pay the remaining money owed on the contract for deed for the former Iris movie theater.
Community Action Partnership: $120,000 ($30,000 a year) -- for housing stabilization support such as rental payments and utility payments.
Seton House: $538,400 -- for long-term projects to repair and maintain buildings nearly 100 years old, planning for and the removal of several buildings, architect's plans, and the replacement of apartments.
Poverty Resistance Food Pantry: $112,600 -- for the pantry manager's salary, a refrigerated truck with a lift, roof repair for the building, window replacement, vehicle maintenance, refrigerators and a freezer, utilities, office supplies, fees and food purchases.
Wyoming Food for Thought Project: $165,000 -- for salaries, rent, program supplies, commercial kitchen upgrades, mobile market staffing, business development for the food hub, infrastructure for the veteran's urban farm, insurance, a production manager and interns.
Wyoming Food Bank of the Rockies: $20,000 -- for the freight charges for the delivery of food and fuel for the Walmart Distribution Center grocery rescue.
United Way of Natrona County $38,680 -- for the tax free assistance program called Volunteer Income Tax Assistance.
Boys & Girls Club of Central Wyoming: $445,836.05 -- to design, permit and build additional classroom and office space as the club relocates its existing technology center to the ground level of the Greater Casper Branch.
Casper Housing Authority: $538,400 -- to work with Seton House and Interfaith to start a new transitional housing program on the Life Steps Campus on East 12th Street. Funding will go for case management, 16 housing units, support services provided by Interfaith, a program manager, administration and supplies, insurance, furnishings and professional fees.
Downtown Development Authority. $23,850 -- for a snow thrower, broom, cab and tractor.
Central Wyoming Hospice and Transitions: $180,000 -- to pay for 63 percent of the installation of a new chiller in the ventilation system and for general operating costs.
Casper Mountain Biathlon: $420,000 -- for four miles of pathway paving; playground and outdoor fitness structures' a lodge building; salary for the venue manager; grooming; race course fencing and signage; program equipment; landscaping; lodge design and project engineering.
Science Zone: $1,080,000 -- $1 million for 50 percent of remodeling and construction of a new building, and $80,000 years of operational support.
Casper Community Greenhouse: $241,682 -- to buy and construct two greenhouses, a stipend for the greenhouse manager, supplement the salary of the executive director, curriculum and educational resources, and organizational operational costs.
Nicolaysen Art Museum: $413,131 -- to replace four windows, demolish and reconstruct of areas of Bryce Hall, replace remaining fluorescent fixtures with LED lighting, demolish railing system in Discovery Center, replace flooring , replace flooring treads and sinks, renovate gift shop, demolish small kitchen and install new kitchen. The City of Casper owns the building.
Restorative Justice: $650,075.72 -- for the salary and benefits of the program specialist and the salary and benefits of the lead restorative justice facilitator.
Central Wyoming Senior Services: $55,000 -- for raw food costs for meals.
Arc of Natrona County: $60,000 -- for the participant activity fund and the salary of an adult day coordinator.
Wyoming Rescue Mission: $200,000 -- facilities and maintenance.
Casper-Natrona County Health Department: $100,000 -- vehicles and furniture.