Pensacola

Burgess Road sidewalks survive second public hearing and final budget vote

September 21, 2017

Last night, the Pensacola City Council unanimously approved a $226.6-million budget for FY 2018. The budget included $1.6 million for sidewalks and street drainage on Burgess Road. The meeting lasted one hour and 21 minutes, so about $2.8 million per minute. Mayor Hayward did not attend the meeting.

According to the city charter, Mayor Hayward may veto any line item in the budget within five days of adoption by City Council – which will be Monday, Sept. 25. If he does veto the item, it will take five council votes to override it.

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  • CJ Lewis September 21, 2017 at 5:00 pm

    Earlier today Councilwoman Myers bluntly asked Mayor Hayward if he was going to veto the Burgess Road project to provide sidewalks for the kids. According to Myers, with whom I just spoke 15 minutes ago, Hayward said that he fully supports the project and would not veto it. Of course, that does beg the question why Hayward’s chief lackey Councilman Johnson is having a hissy fit over sidewalks for kids, why The Pulse website bankrolled by Johnson and City Administrator Olson are all so bent out of shape. At about 2:30 pm this afternoon, Myers was driving back from city hall and was on Burgess Road when a school bus pulled over and dropped of some kids who had to walk home along Burgess Road in a drainage ditch. I have seen it too. It did not rain today. When Burgess Road gets a light rain it is a mess; when it gets a heavy rain it is impassable. Lastly, for the record, each year the City of Pensacola gets a declining percentage of Local Option Sales Tax revenues because the city is experiencing negative growth relative to Escambia County. In other words, each year the percentage of county residents who are city residents declines a little each year. The current percentage of county residents who are city residents is now down to 15.99% – hardly evidence of “explosive growth in the city.” In fact, if you believe the population numbers in the city budget just approved yesterday, the city’s population dropped by 423 from 2016 to the number recently put out for 2017 – again hardly evidence of “explosive growth.” Further on the downside, the percentage of city residents who are school age (5-17) declined by about 25% from 2000 to 2010 and I think given the high crime inside city limits and abundance of crazy drivers speeding past schools that the number will be a bit lower after the 2020 census. The current projection is that the city will get about $87 million in Local Option Sales Tax dollars during the 2018-2028 LOST IV authorization, the source of the money for the Burgess Road Project. District 2 was on track to get next to nothing before Myers fought once more for the Burgess Road project which has the support of Escambia County and the Escambia County School District. The only district in the city that is going to get less is District 1 where I live, parts of District 1 closer to Pace than city hall. Myers knows that the Gull Point Community Center is in horrible condition and proposed using $2 million of the $87 million to renovate it. It did not pass in part because our District 1 Councilman P.C. Wu opposed the project.

  • Watching the Circus September 21, 2017 at 2:57 pm

    This will not get built even in the budget! Sherry Myers is out of touch with how things go and cost in the construction side of the world. What about design cost nothing in there for that? Nothing in there if it needs right of way which most likely it will. Oh and the statement that the money is still there for the county portion is not true either…. Rick reported on that one not to long ago. Strange how she forgot that if she was in touch with what is going in on her district. The cost she said she got from Derrick Owens she even said was like a year old or so …. that 1.6 million with the hurricanes and stuff is most likely more like 2 million and all the contractors know who she is and know she is going to be all up in the project so they will jack the cost just because they know they will have to deal with that. So you 1.6 million should have been more like 2.6 million then add 5% contingency because the plans I am sure will miss something just like the jail or the one out at navy federal. If she really wanted this done she would have a clue on what it cost. Oh ya that road used to be state road 742 so saying you have been fighting the city for 20 years was also a lie. All these reasons are why no one fought about it. They all knew the cost she asked for would not be enough and most likely will die later giving them money for another pet project in someone else district!

  • Rich September 21, 2017 at 2:07 pm

    If the mayor vetoes the sidewalks he is a bigger jerk than I currently think he is. Hopefully with some moral backbone will run against him.