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New Rate Structure Improves City’s Standing on Grant Process

By Alisha Thompson
Crossing “t’s” and dotting “i’s” for the city’s finances was the name of the game. An improved fee schedule for the City of Davis and Davis Municipal Authority approved by councilmen will save money for Davis residents on their water and sewer rates and allow the City of Davis to be in better standing when applying for grants.
Jeremy Bumgarner was absent for the Nov. 14 council meeting where the agenda consisted mostly of “housekeeping” items.
Since Resolution #628 in the Davis Municipal Authority portion of the meeting passed, the City of Davis will now be in better standing to maximize grant application opportunities. The main change on water and sewer rates is that the usage is broken down into more specific categories. In the long run, saving the consumer money.
“The OWRB grant that we did a resolution for in the City of Davis, because we are applying for the City of Davis under that grant. It’s a 72 total point grant. 13 points are awarded for your water and sewer rates. The CDBG Grant also works in the same way in that it awards points for your water and sewer rates,” City Treasurer/Clerk Susie Suther explained. “If your water and sewer rates are not broken out by 1,000 gallons and priced separately by 1,000 gallons for the first 5,000 gallons, you will lose points on your grant.”
The current billing software only gives eight options for categories of billing. “None of the current rates that were approved and effective March 2022 increased,” Suther said.
Suther went on to explain that billing will be less on this rate structure. The biggest impact will be Commercial Inside, $3,310.96 less. “It’s going to take us down a little over $6,000 total,” Suther said. “I believe the trade-off for the current grant we are applying for, I believe it is beneficial to make this change. The more grant money we get the less money we have to pay back.”
The City Council meeting can be viewed in its entirety on the City of Davis – Oklahoma Facebook page.
Davis City Council
Resolution #620 will allow the city to authorize a checking account for the City of Davis Capital Improvement Fund. Suther said that when the city entered in to an agreement with Midground Creators the city has an obligation to receive half of the monthly payment that is received for capital improvements on that property. She had that Turner Falls has an account where they maintain capital improvements and DMA has an account for water and waste water improvements. Suther said that there wasn’t an account set up to pay for improvement projects from Cross Bar Ranch.
Resolution #621 allowed the city to close the Fire Truck Savings account and transferring the balance to the Capital Improvement Fund. “Because there will be a place that we can allocate those funds individually, and make them by general ledger line item. Which ones belong to different entities, like we do in the Grant fund and some other funds we have,” Suther explained. “I want to close the savings account that is for the fire department, I want to transfer that balance into the Capital Improvement Fund that you just agreed to open.” Suther went on to explain that there were fewer transactions that come out of restricted funds and its easier to keep up with the funds. She said those are maintained and you can tell exactly what was spent.
Resolution #622 closed the Police Drug K9 Fund and the balance will be transferred to the Municipal Court Fund. Suther said that closing this account and moving it to the already restricted Municipal Court Fund. “Inside those funds we keep our fines, once those fines are collected for the month we pay out the expenses that are required to paid out from those funds. We allocate what has been collected for drug education. We allocate what has been collected for technology. That money sits in the municipal court fund,” Suther said.
Resolution #623 allowed Suther to authorize distribution of Escrow for the City of Davis to pay. “OMAG notified the City of Davis $7,290.38 in escrow, I want to apply that to the next quartley payment we make on our Worker’s Compensation to reduce the amount we pay and use those escrow funds,” Suther said. This money was paid in by the City of Davis that wasn’t used over a multi-year period.
With Resolution #624 councilmen granted a variance for a property at 300 West Hanna. The new home set to be constructed will put the homes on the block in alignment.
Resolution #625 authorized application by the City of Davis to apply for American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Grant for the Oklahoma Water Resources Board. “The OWRB is offering ARPA funds with a potential to get upwards of a $1 million dollar grant,” said City Manager Ricky Harness. “We’re going through a process now with an engineering firm, which is a requirement that you have the support of an engineering firm. We’ll make a selection there that will give us some points within the grant application process,” Harness said. “We’re looking at these funds to help us address some water and sewer line replacement through town.” Councilmen named Harness the Chief Project Sponsor.
Harness said that the city will work with the selected firm to prioritize streets throughout town that need repairs.
“We will work to have shovel ready projects lined up when we have access to grant dollars,” Harness said. Suther said that this grant is $1 million with no matching funds required. “We have until the end of the month to submit this application, but I do not believe we can apply these funds to the waste water treatment plant, but since there is no match, there is no reason not to go after the funds.”
Resolution #626 authorized the city to apply for a ODOT TA Grant for the Sixth Street Project. This project will put sidewalks down both sides of Sixth Street. The project engineer, Garver, identified this grant. This grant will take money off of the total cost of the Sixth Street Project. The grant is $337,000 and the grant is a 90/10 grant.
Resolution #627 allowed the city to execute an ODOT Maintenance agreement for traffic signal installation at US-77/SH-7 and Third Street intersection. Harness said this is related to the ODOT project that will begin in February. “It goes from the stop lights, west to the tracks. As part of that project we are getting a protected turn lane from east bound Hwy. 7 going north and then from Hwy. 77 out of town,” Harness said. This resolution allows the city to take on maintenance of the stop light. Harness said he did reach out to ODOT to inquire about a protected turn lane coming up Third Street, west onto Highway 7 to help the school buses get out.
Resolution #628 was adopted by councilmen Establishing a Fee Schedule for the City of Davis and the Davis Municipal Authority. This fee schedule can be found at www.davisokla.org.
“This isn’t a new fee schedule. It’s an improved fee schedule,” said Davis City Treasurer/Clerk Susie Suther. “We don’t want to make this a terrible problem for our existing businesses that do these. We are proposing the renewal fee be $125 on beer and wine and the renewal fee be $150 on premise beer wine and on premise mix. On retail sale. An annual tax that is paid. We recommend the real increase be on new licenses.”
The other change is on pedler’s and solicitor’s permits. “We dropped those to be more friendly to food trucks,” Suther said. “The only other change is we adopted a special event permit. We have had a few applications come through. For any of our local community partners, we’ve waved the fee of the special event permit. We do want the application.” The fee was assessed to a filming crew.
Additionally councilmen agreed to proceed with a quiet title for Lots 1 & 2, Block 120 on Seventh Street. The city will surplus a former police cruiser, a 2013 Ford Tarus. Councilmen voted to sell 14 acres formerly used for the Crazy Horse Airport. The decision to surplus property located at 132 E. Hazelwood occurring on Aug. 10, 2020 was reversed.
Davis Municipal Authority
Trustees voted to leave a matured DMA CDs in the amount of $17,906.69 in the DMA Waste/Wastewater Infrastructure account to use for waste/wastewater infrastructure projects.
Resolution #629 establishing a water and sanitary sewer rates/tiers for water/sewer billing to maximize grant application opportunities was passed.
A TFP Budget amendment in the amount of $417,000 to fund capital outlay at Turner Falls Park was approved for projects including: Tipi villages, bunk houses, commercial washers and dryers, a side by side, tractor and a dump truck.
A 2022 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 from Mike Hellack Chevrolet in the amount of $38,124 for use by the water department was approved.
The DMA Budget was amended for the vehicle purchase.
The next council meeting is Dec. 12 at 6 p.m. The next council meeting is Dec. 12 at 6 p.m. located at 308 S. Third Street.

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