The Las Cruces City Council unanimously adopted a Resolution approving a $499.6 million budget for City government’s 2022 fiscal year, which begins July 1. Council’s approval of the budget came at its regularly scheduled meeting on Monday, May 17, 2021.
The adopted budget is available online at: https://www.las-cruces.org/DocumentCenter/View/7131/Adopted-Budget-FY2022. Highlights of the budget include General Fund revenue of $114 million and the inclusion of 12 City Council priorities that fund road improvements, park development, and the Mobile Integrated Health program, among other initiatives.
As required by the Las Cruces City Charter, the budget provides a complete financial plan of all City funds and activities for the upcoming year. The budget will be filed by June 1 with the State of New Mexico Department of Finance and Administration (NMDFA) for approval as required by State Law (NMSA 1978 Chapter 6, Article 6).
Related to the budget, City Council also unanimously adopted a Resolution approving the City’s six-year Capital Improvement Program (CIP) for fiscal years 2022 through 2027 which totals $119.5 million. The CIP identifies projects that address capital needs to build, replace, expand, and improve infrastructure and systems.
The CIP is made up of two components: Funded Capital Projects (FCP), and an Infrastructure Capital Improvement Plan (ICIP). The FCP is the list of projects that are funded for the upcoming 2022 fiscal year. The ICIP shows projects for the five fiscal years from 2023 to 2027 which are not funded.
Additionally, at Monday’s meeting, the Council adopted a Resolution supporting a Trap-Neuter-Return Program (TNR) to humanely control the population of feral cats in the community.
Currently, the City handles feral cats with only euthanasia. A TNR program will be a humane alternative to euthanasia to control the feral cat population by live-trapping cats, spaying or neutering, ear tipping for identification, vaccinating, and then returning them to the area where they were trapped.
The Animal Care Task Force has developed a TNR program that functions with a community cat policy, provides financial and educational resources, and includes a four-strike policy. The TNR program in development by the task force includes provisions, which would prevent feral cats from being trapped and then returned 150 feet of a licensed daycare center, public or private school, a nursing home or care facility, any park, or City-owned or leased facility property, or within a half mile of the Rio Grande or within 150 feet of the edge of a designated, natural or non-channelized arroyo, unless within an enclosed cat colony. The Council also supports hiring a contractor who will collect data to ensure the process is working.
City Council also approved the following agenda items:
Upon conducting a public hearing, the Council adopted a Resolution to approve t ahe transfer of ownership of an inter-local dispenser liquor license for Blazing Wings, Inc., doing business as Buffalo Wild Wings, 2750 Mall Drive. The Council also conducted a second, separate public hearing and adopted a Resolution approving a beer wholesaler liquor license to Icebox Brewing Co., 2825 W. Picacho Ave.
Council also adopted a Resolution to name the first-floor Facilities Management wing at City Hall, 700 N. Main St., as “Angel’s Wing.” The wing will be named in memory of Angel Benevente, who served as the Building Operations Services Supervisor at City Hall from Oct. 28, 2018 until Nov. 5, 2020, when he passed away from complications of COVID-19.
The Council adopted a Resolution, on the Consent Agenda, to accept the 2020 Doña Ana County All-Hazard Mitigation Plan for the reduction of hazard risk with the City.
Also, on the Consent Agenda, which City Council approved with a single motion, a Resolution was adopted which authorized the City to accept various grant awards for various City departments through an amendment to the City’s Adopted Fiscal Year 2021 budget, and as applicable, the Fiscal Year 2021 Capital Improvement Plan for May 2021.
Additionally on the Consent Agenda, a Resolution was adopted to approve contracts for the purchase of Chrysler/Dodge products parts and labor for City fleet vehicles with Sisbarro Buick-Pontiac GMC, Inc. and Crucesway Autos, doing business as Viva Dodge, Ram, Chrysler, Jeep, Fiat, both of Las Cruces, for an initial term of one year, with the option to renew for an addition four one-year terms, in a combined total amount not to exceed $135,00 annually plus gross receipts tax, subject to approved budget appropriations and annual renewals.