Quincy city officials are wrangling with their budget for the upcoming year and in an effort to save money, the city manager is proposing eliminating two key departments.
A home that was once an eyesore in the community and a new playground for area kids are two of several items made possible by the Grants Department. Now, the city manager is hoping to privatize that department as well as Mainstreet.
Auburn Ford, Grants Manager for the City of Quincy , says, "I explained to our commissioners in our workshop that it was not a good idea. We are from this area and we care about the citizens and we can do the best job we know their needs. Consultants, all they care about is profits."
Profit is the major driving force behind the push, but Mayor Derrick Elias says the city manager is yet to show him the money.
Derrick Elias says, "If it goes through and the Grants Department is not funded I will be looking towards the city manager to ensure that we do not skip a beat and continue these things, so the city manager will have to be creative in addressing the shortfall we may encounter."
The Mainstreet director has been trying to change the face of downtown by trying to recruit new businesses to the area, which will add to the tax base and help an already struggling economy.
Pamela Braynen, Mainstreet Manager, says, "I'm working with several organizations to get them in place downtown. All those places will cease. I'm not sure what the city manager plans as to who is going to be taking care of those responsibilities. As far I can see in this year's upcoming budget it has not been sent to someone else."
Braynen is still hoping to turn downtown into the bustling area it once was. Another workshop is planned for this coming Monday, and a public hearing is scheduled for September before commissioners adopt the final budget.
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