By Joan F. Simoneau, Community Reporter
Marlborough – Leading with a $12.1 million infusion of “free cash”, city councilors at the Nov. 14 meeting reviewed, approved or sent to the Finance Committee more than $17.5 million in grants, transfers and more funds for a stabilization fund. Mayor Arthur Vigeant advised the council of the $12 million-plus windfall, saying it is a major sign of the city’s financial fiscal health. It is expected that some of that sum will be used to stabilize the fiscal year (FY) 2017 tax rate to be established next month.
Another positive note stated by Vigeant is receipt of a state grant topping $3 million that will be used to supplement the significant investment at the Apex Center, currently under construction on Route 20; and a $99,000 grant to help pay for the costs of operating the emergency dispatch center.
On the negative side, Vigeant is seeking approval of a transfer totaling $1.6 million to cover legal costs in an ongoing legal skirmish between the city and WeCare Environmental.
The mayor also requested approval of several other transfers totaling just under $2.5 million, including a transfer of $337,500 to fund a new stabilization fund for future growth to help increase property values and promote economic growth.
In another major transfer, Vigeant is seeking council approval of $324,000 to pay the costs associated with a recent collective bargaining agreement between the city and the union for police patrol officers for FY2016, 2017, and 2018. Other monetary items include a $150,000 transfer to another stabilization fund paid for by developers of the Crab Tree project, and close to $25,000 for personnel costs related to a retirement and negotiation of union contracts.