Next year's budget for the Town of Normal won't look much different from this year. The Town Council is working on the spending plan. City Manager Mark Peterson says the proposal is "a little higher, but, really, no major difference in basic operations."
Peterson said following a budget work session that a higher sales tax revenue approved last year will allow the town to invest in infrastructure.
"The operating budget was relatively status quo for us, other than the sales tax, which is allowing us to do some new and exciting things. A lot of road repair and things like that."
The sales tax hike took effect in January.
Beyond this year's budget, Peterson says additional sales tax revenue could be used to improve public transportation, infrastructure, and parks. Peterson says they're looking at working with Bloomington on some of those projects.
"Connect Transit is one that I think I'm hearing that the City of Bloomington is generally leaning toward supporting joining Normal in funding Connect Transit. Because they [Connect Transit] can take those local dollars and almost double them with additional state and federal funding."
Peterson says the town of Normal also looking at parterning with Bloomington on business development activities like B-N Advantage, the Economic Development Council, the Central Illinois Regional Airport, and the Convention and Visitor's Bureau.
"Bloomington is still considering whether or not they're in a position to use sales tax funds for that purpose."
Town council members will have a chance to adjust the budget before its final public presentation and hearing in March. The plan will take effect in April.