FRUITLAND — Fruitland government is ready to have another go at solving the city organization’s years-old problem of having outgrown its facilities.
The latest solution involves a possible bond election in November. If approved by two-thirds of city voters, the measure would fund extensive remodeling of Fruitland City Hall and construction of new quarters for the Fruitland Police Department.
At Monday night’s regular meeting of the Fruitland City Council, City Clerk Rick Watkins told the council the expected cost for the city project is a little more than $2.4 million.
Concurrent with the proposed project for City Hall and the Police Department, the city hopes to also see construction of new facilities for the Payette County Ambulance District. That will require a countywide bonding measure, however. The estimated total for that project is a little less than $3.25 million.
City officials indicated on Monday that they would almost certainly pursue funding for the city project regardless of the outcome of county commissioners’ deliberations on the proposed corresponding effort for the ambulance district.
Councilor Stuart Grimes said it’s important to confirm, however, that the projects as currently conceived can indeed stand separately. The city will consult its architect for reassurance on this.
Meantime, Fruitland officials will begin formal discussions with the county commissioners, who already know, more informally, about the city’s tentative plans.
“Last leadership breakfast we hit the commissioners between the eyes with it, so they’re aware what we want to do,” Watkins said.
Grimes said it “would be nice to know … what their willingness would be to try to run a bond through.”
The city may have some idea of this soon, as Watkins will be contacting the county to have the business item listed on an upcoming county commissioners meeting agenda. Several Fruitland councilors said they planned to attend the meeting.
According to Fruitland City Attorney Stephanie Bonney, the city has until Sept. 16 to submit its paperwork for a November bond election.