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City Council to discuss proposed voter referendum on $97M bond package


The Fayetteville City Council on Monday is scheduled to discuss projects that would be part of a proposed $97 million bond package to put before voters in November.

The City Council meets at 7 p.m. in City Hall. It will be its final regular monthly meeting until Aug. 8. A work session is scheduled for earlier that month.

The City Council will consider an order authorizing $60 million in public safety improvement bonds; $25 million in streets, sidewalk and connectivity bonds; and $12 million in housing project bonds, according to agenda materials from the city.

During a council agenda briefing on Wednesday, City Manager Doug Hewett called the referendum on the bond packages “a significant item.”

Two days later, he said through a city spokeswoman: "The proposed $97 million bond, if approved by voters in November, would allow for significant investments in Fayetteville's infrastructure and operations. The funding could pave the way for the city to pursue key projects in public safety, public infrastructure and housing affordability. Progress made across all three areas has the potential to improve the quality of life for residents by addressing needs directly related to safety and security."

According to information in the agenda packet, the $60 million for public safety improvements would be used to acquire, construct and equip various law enforcement and firefighting facilities.

The $25 million for streets, sidewalk and connectivity improvements would be used for street, road, mobility, sidewalk and streetscape improvements, bridges, bicycle lanes, curbs and drains, traffic controls and greenways, the agenda materials say.

The $12 million in housing bonds would be used for community development programs “to provide and rehabilitate multifamily and single-family housing inside the corporate limits of the city, principally for the benefit of persons of low- and moderate-income’’ the agenda materials say. This would include programs to provide loans or other financial assistance to people and private housing providers.

The City Council on Monday will consider the adoption of the bond orders. A public hearing on the proposed bond orders is expected to be scheduled for Aug. 8, which is also when a resolution calling for a bond referendum would be considered, according to materials in the agenda packet. 

Should the bonds be approved by voters, an increase in the property tax rate would be needed to repay the bonds in future budgets. However, the city has said that would not be in the fiscal 2022-23 budget just approved by City Council.

Hewett has said the coming months will prove significant for the city’s progress as several key projects will be completed. That includes moving forward on the proposed $97 million bond referendum.

“I am excited about the direction we are collectively making as a city," he has said, "and the impact that will have for our residents."

Michael Futch covers Fayetteville and education for CityView TODAY. He can be reached at mfutch@cityviewnc.com. Have a news tip? Email news@CityViewTODAY.com.

Fayetteville, City Council, bond referendum, public safety, housing, streets