About 200 people showed up for a town hall meeting in Dixon last night to hear more about the financial state of their city…and offer suggestions on how to spend nearly 40-million dollars.
Some wanted sewer and property tax breaks. Others wanted street repairs. A group cheered loudly every time fixing or replacing the public pool was brought up. The audience responded favorably to recommendations by Finance Director Paula Meyer: she would like the city to pay back money it borrowed from its own operating funds, pay off three long-term bonds, and start a rainy-day fund. She has another goal for the city:
I certainly see a Dixon that doesn’t have to worry about whether or not they’re going to have to make payroll anymore. And that was definitely a concern here for a long time.
The money should be available by the end of the year. Most of it comes from settlements with auditors and a bank for not catching former comptroller Rita Crundwell, who embezzled 53-million dollars over two decades. The rest comes from sales of her assets.
City council members expect to hire a city administrator in less than a month, if the person they’ve chosen passes background checks. The administrator will work with the council on deciding how to spend the 40-million.