Corsicana City Council members held a joint meeting with Navarro County Commissioners, Monday, June 29 inside the City Government Center in Corsicana.
Corsicana City Manager Connie Standridge said the city’s final budget numbers for the upcoming fiscal year will be finalized later in the month of July. The same time that Navarro County’s budget is expected to be completed.
The preliminary meeting was set to discuss potential solutions to shortfalls which finds that Corsicana’s Emergency Medical Services fund has a negative $1.4 million cash balance so far this year. A balanced budget could be achieved by cutting five paramedic positions.
The city asked the county to consider additional funds, approximately $100,000 toward its total contribution of $523,000, in order to maintain the current staffing levels.
The city would contribute the remaining $687,000. The extra money would pay to retain the five personnel and provide raises.
Susan Hale, Pct. 1 Councilwoman, discussed the pay disparity between Corsicana and other comparable towns in the region.
“We’re getting great service, the problem is the EMS transport bills aren’t being paid,” Hale said.
Corsicana Fire Chief Paul Henley said it is such a lag to see return of money through EMS billing.
Jason Grant, Navarro County Commissioner Pct. 1, asked that equitable treatment be considered for services the county provides free of charge to Corsicana and unincorporated areas of the county.
Chris Woolsey, Pct. 3 Councilman, asked whether or not other entities besides Corsicana and Navarro County residents were paying the cost for their fair share for an ambulance run.
“I think it may be worth exploring what it looks like to bring other municipalities in to share the cost of the ambulance run,” he said.
“There are other ways to approach this problem other than trying to raise or lower Corsicana or Navarro County costs,” Woolsey said.
Woolsey suggested a future meeting after arriving at calculations noting the number of runs to all municipalities in Navarro County to aid in future discussions.
The Corsicana City Council conducted two pieces of regular business before the joint session was called to order.
The council approved the low bid for the I-45 Industrial Park sanitary sewer project. The low bid of $1,018,132 was submitted by Belt Construction of Texas LLC. The cost includes funds for administrative and legal costs, as well as the cost of the work.
Belt Construction of Texas is awaiting word on whether an Economic Development Administration grant in the amount of $435,050 will cover a portion of the project.
The city’s cost will be $583,082. It’s hoped that part of the city’s match will be recouped from Lake Halbert spillway repair project. Approval from the Texas Waterway Development Board to use $364,000 has yet to be received.
The council also approved a bid of $164,896, submitted by RPMX Construction LLC for temporary road construction at SH-31 Industrial Park West of CR 0070. The project is funded by the sale of property to Audubon Metals Texas LLC.
A special meeting of the Corsicana City Council is scheduled for 5 p.m. Wednesday, July 8.