Mayor’s Memo – Good News to Share

Good News to Share!

By Mayor Sean Denison

Over the course of the last few weeks the City has learned of some unexpected, yet very welcome revenues coming in. On 03/04/21, the State transferred to the City $84,003.96 in marihuana revenues tied to three dispensary operations located within the City. This marks the first time that the City has receipted any money related to marihuana taxes, which has been promised from the State for some time. This figure is anticipated to increase over time, and the City budget will need to be amended to reflect the change, as the timing and amount of the payment was not anticipated. After discussions during our budget planning meeting, there was considerable agreement that the funds should be used to continue the economic development momentum that the City is currently experiencing.

The recently approved federal stimulus package, entitled the “American Rescue Plan” (or “ARP”), includes payments that will pass through the Michigan Department of Treasury to then be distributed directly to municipalities, with the City of Buchanan anticipated to receive approximately $1,747,199 in total over the next 18 months or so, with around $793,443 anticipated to arrive within the next few months, and around $953,756 to arrive approximately one year later. Restrictions on the use of the funds indicate that they cannot be used to pay down pension liabilities or reduce taxes. However, they are otherwise fairly open to use on other projects, such as water/wastewater infrastructure and economic development geared at recovering the local economy following COVID-19. Municipalities have until 2024 to spend the funds, so we can strategize the best use of the funding and integrate its receipt and planned use into our next fiscal budget, which is currently under development.  All of this is great news for Buchanan.

Finally, I would like to personally thank all of the first responders, volunteers, churches, organizations and private citizens who showed so much generosity and caring after the fire at West Wind Apartments. You have proved once again that life is better here. 

Thank you, see you around town,

Sean Denison

Mayor Sean Denison, Spring 2021, Photo submitted by Sean Denison
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