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Clarinda seeks reimbursement for pandemic related expenses
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Clarinda seeks reimbursement for pandemic related expenses

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HJ - Clarinda City Hall

Clarinda has applied for reimbursement from the Iowa COVID-19 Government Relief Fund for expenses incurred during the pandemic.

The Clarinda City Council approved the application during its meeting Wednesday, Sept. 23, at the Lied Public Library. The city applied for $82,291 in reimbursement from the fund.

Clarinda City Manager Gary McClarnon said, initially, the city did not qualify for reimbursement from the fund. However, he was recently notified by Iowa League of Cities that the regulations had changed and Clarinda now was eligible to apply.

“They are assuming that 25% of your public safety dollars would be COVID related. So I had to go through a lot of payroll records, get copies of everything and then I had to fill out a special spreadsheet that the state provided,” McClarnon said.

With the assistance of Diane Stanton, McClarnon said he was able to compile the 67 pages of documentation included in the application in two days.

“If we get approved for that and get that money, that would definitely help us out per at least getting some of our money back for COVID related pandemic (expenses),” McClarnon said.

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Also Wednesday, the council approved the annual Urban Renewal Report for the Fiscal Year 2019-2020. The report details the use of Tax Increment Financing funds by the city.

McClarnon said Clarinda started the fiscal year with a TIF balance of $59,449. During the year the city had $221,241 compared to total expenses of $159,593, leaving the city with a balance of $121,097 at the end of the fiscal year June 30.

Theoretically, McClarnon said the city should have a $0 balance in the fund. However, the city ended up with added funds as a result of a rebate after the closing of the Shopko store in Clarinda.

“We ended up certifying for two years of receiving that. Well, this year we will not receive an extra $120,000. We’ve decertified it for this year. So, next year’s report should be back close to zero again,” McClarnon said.

McClarnon also pointed out the year-end outstanding TIF obligations of $3,011,755 for Clarinda. That figure indicates how much the city will need to generate in annual property taxes over the next 10 to 15 years to meet the requirements of the rebates the city has issued.

“The good part of that is we’re generating that much more money. Then, if you think about it long term, that’s an investment in our community. Right now it looks like a big number, but down the road it’s definitely going to pay its dividends,” McClarnon said.

In other business, the council approved a pay request in the amount of $416,106.65 from Building Crafts Inc. for the wastewater treatment facility construction project underway in Clarinda. McClarnon said the project is on schedule.

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