GREENVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) – Greenville City Council passed a resolution earlier this week on what to do with a multi-million dollar budget surplus.
It’s not unusual for the city to have a surplus, but this is the first time since before the pandemic they’ll be able to allocate it to projects and districts.
Business owners like Michael Oliver said Stone Avenue is a magnet for traffic accidents.
“We have a lot of collisions probably once every three weeks we’re hearing a big thumping crash and a couple of vehicles involved,” he said.
It’s part of the reason council member Dorothy Dowe wants to spend some of the city’s surplus money to make the thoroughfare safer.
“We have families that would like to be able to walk their children to school, I would not as a parent allow my child across Stone Avenue alone,” she said.
It’s one of the capital improvement projects council members were asked to prioritize the city’s nearly $7 million surpluses.
“Quality of life, safety, impact on population–in other words how much of our population are they impacting–and then do they bring in economic development,” Dowe said.
City spokesperson Beth Brotherton said 80-percent of the surplus will go towards capital improvement projects and the other 20-percent will be split between the four districts for smaller projects.
“For them to use as discretionary funds for them to be able to fund smaller projects within their district,” Brotherton said.
Those could be anything from traffic calming to sidewalks.
“And then give counsel a little bit of leeway to spend money in their communities on projects they think would be a great benefit,” Brotherton said.
As an at large member, Dowe is focused on the bigger chunk of money.
“Every dollar we spend on one thing is a dollar we cannot spend on another thing,” she said.
And people like Oliver said Stone Avenue is a great place to start.
“If we could do it in a way that makes sense and gets everyone home in one piece and safely at night I think that would be great for everybody,” he said.
These budget items and others will still need to be approved. The public hearing and first reading will happen on May 23.
The budget will be adopted in mid-June.