Galesburg City Council Discusses Heart and Soul Initiative, Budget

6-23-14 Galesburg City CouncilLast night, the Galesburg City Council met in a work session to discuss budget updates and community interest initiatives.

The Galesburg Community Foundation is teaming up with the Orton Family Foundation to implement the “Heart and Soul” initiative, pending city council approval of a $50,000 contribution over two years.

Orton Family Foundation Senior Associate of Programs Meagan Picard says the program would bring not only a monetary return through tax revenue on new businesses, but also a social capital return.

Picard spoke of how the program benefited Biddeford, Maine, and Mayor John Pritchard said he spoke with the Mayor of this town and believes its’s a good investment.

“I’ve had a chance to meet with the Mayor of Biddeford, Maine who came here,” says Pritchard. “He certainly is an advocate, and he’s certainly seen many benefits from this process. I’m convinced that this would be a good investment.”

The entire council seemed to be in agreement that this initiative would benefit the community, though a final vote won’t take place until the next meeting.

The council also caught up on the status of the budget, with City Manager Todd Thompson concluding that they are anticipating a roughly $1 million deficit for FY16.

Thompson says part of the issue is personnel costs.

The council will talk more about how to close the budget gap after the next meeting.

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