The Sedalia City Council met for an annual strategic planning session Saturday, Jan. 8, at the Municipal Building, 2nd and Osage.

The result of the multi-hour meeting was the finalization of ranking sheets that prioritized projects requiring funding over the next fiscal year.

The strategy session, attended by Council and Staff, serves as a kickoff to developing a budget for the City of Sedalia, noted City Administrator Kelvin Shaw.

Having input from all the department heads over the past few months really gives the Council more opportunity for Council to digest information and makes for more meaningful discussion, Shaw said.

The practice of hearing annual presentations from them began a few years ago, Shaw noted.

“This year's discussion was the best we've ever had,” he commented. "A lot of good thoughts and dialogue."

Council will assemble for a work session on the last Monday in February, Shaw explained, to finalize a budget. "We try to build the budget around what the priorities are," Shaw said. "What do we want to accomplish and why?"

The ranking sheets were divided into four categories, including General Fund, Capital Improvements Fund, Transportation Fund and ARPA Funding Utilization.

Final ranking in the General Fund category from top to bottom shows: Move to LAGERS and freeze the current plan (SFD), $250,000; Demolition of dangerous buildings, $100,000; 353 Redevelopment neighborhood revitalization (SPD), $200,000; Recruitment incentives (SPD), $30,000; Non-lethal weapons and wrap expansion, $20,000; Downtown blight study to expand 353 area, $25,000; Add staff vehicle (SFD), $35,000; Retail Recruitment Consulting, ($60,000); Drone Program Expansion (SPD), $15,000; Continue branding messaging, $150,00; Medical UTV (SFD), $20,000; Crown Hill Cemetery adds a 64-niche columbarium, $20,000; City Health Department, $90,000.

Final ranking in the Capital Improvements category from top to bottom shows: Sidewalk and curb restorations, $500,000; Thompson Boulevard from 10th to 16th, $490,000; Fire Squads (two units), $400,000; Sidewalks from 7th to Liberty Park Boulevard on South Limit, $225,000; Fire Station Design #3 model and training center, $500,000; Stormwater projects at 11th & Montgomery, 28th & Quincy, and Crescent & Ware, $1 million; tied with 32nd & Limit improvements, $1.3 million; tied with alley reactivation, $500,000; Highway 50 & Winchester lane improvements, $350,000; Sidewalks on State Fair Boulevard, Highway 50, Third Street and Highway 65, $310,000; Engineer improvements from 16th to 24th, $200,000; Clinton Road improvements from Grand to 32nd (3-inch overlay), $375,000; Purchase decorative lights, $450,000; Bikeway on Third Street from Katy Depot to Liberty Park, $825,000; 16th & Winchester to Sacajawea, $3.2 million; 16th Street completion from New York to Limit, $8.75 million; Bikeway from the Amtrak Depot to Katy Depot, $1 million; North Harding and Boonville from Highway 50 to the airport, $1 million; State Fair Boulevard from Main Street to the Pro Energy Roundabout, $1.6 million; tied with Pacific & Ohio, and 2nd & Osage parking lots, $40,000; Highway 65 and Sacajawea traffic light, $400,000; Highway 50 Katy Trail overpass widening, $10 million (cost sharing with MoDOT); Monument and wayfinding signing brand launch, $200,000; Highway 65 ramps at Main Street (cost share with MoDOT), $21 million; Pro Energy to Oak Grove, $2.5 million.

Final ranking in the ARPA Funding Utilization category from top to bottom shows: Expand Water & Sewer at North WireCo and Nevada, $1.2 million; Expand Water & Sewer Southwest, $1.5 million; tied with Tourism Destination Plan, $80,000; and Allocate to CIP to go further with road projects, unknown amount.

Final ranking in the Transportation category from top to bottom shows: Parallel Runway at Sedalia Regional Airport, $400,000 (grant funding of $3.6 million is available); and Reconstruct Runway 5/23, which is nearly 10 years old, $110,000 (grant funding of $1.1 million is available).

Among those attending the strategic planning session were two City Council candidates, Shaw noted.

“It was good to see them there. It shows interest and it's a great opportunity to see what is gong on, and what the issues are,” Shaw said.

The City Administrator added that “one of the things that is very difficult for the public to understand, and really even for us to understand from time to time, is that not every dollar can be spent on anything that we want. A lot of our revenues are dedicated to where we can only spend it on certain things,” Shaw said.

A good example of that is capital improvement project money, he noted. “That is reserved, and that sales tax can only be used for capital improvement projects. You can't use it for wages,” Shaw pointed out.