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  • Dover City Manager releases proposed six-year Capital Improvements Program

    DOVER – Dover City Manager J. Michael Joyal, Jr. released his proposed Capital Improvements Program (CIP) for fiscal years 2022 through 2027 to the City Council and Planning Board at a joint workshop session on Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020. The workshop can be viewed at https://dovernh.viebit.com/player.php?hash=BxNrMDOsqR9o.
    The Planning Board and City Council will review the CIP over the coming weeks, and the City Council is expected to vote on the proposed CIP in November.
    "The Capital Improvements Program is a collection of capital projects that are funded by various means," Joyal said, noting that projects can be financed through the City's operating budget, debt financing, and reserve accounts. "The projects identified in this CIP represent the legitimate equipment and infrastructure needs supporting the diverse requirements of our community."
    The CIP is a city-wide planning effort that begins the next fiscal year's budget cycle, starting on July 1, 2021. Projects included in the plan are capital projects and purchases over $25,000 that maintain and improve the community infrastructure and have a useful life of at least three years. The CIP six-year program links infrastructure spending to the City's Master Plan's goals and values.
    "The CIP is a vital part of the City of Dover's long-term planning process," said Christopher G. Parker, Assistant City Manager: Director of Planning and Strategic Initiatives. "This six-year plan helps identify the needs of the community and prepare a long-term funding strategy to meet those needs."
    For fiscal year 2022 that begins on July 1, 2021, the CIP has $18,244,036 in proposed capital projects. That includes $8,003,036 funded through the operating budget, $6,696,000 funded through debt-financing, and $3,545,000 funded from reserve accounts.
    Some of the proposed projects in FY2022's CIP include rehabilitation of the Chestnut Street Bridge, installing an air conditioning and dehumidifier unit in Dover Middle School, street reconstruction projects, utility upgrades, and funding the City's vehicle replacement programs. The CIP details each of the 100 proposed CIP projects over the next six years. Each proposed project lists the Master Plan chapter, section and page number the project would fulfill.
    The CIP is updated annually and involves input sessions with the Planning Board and City Council, including public hearings for both boards. The Planning Board will begin its CIP discussions at its Oct. 13 meeting. The Planning Board reviews the CIP to see if it meets the needs expressed in the City's Master Plan. After deliberations, it will forward its CIP recommendations to the City Council.
    The City Council is expected to hold three public hearings related to the CIP at its Oct. 28 meeting: one the CIP itself, one on proposed debt financing, and one on non-debt financed and non-operating budget funded projects. The City Council will also have a Nov. 4 workshop on the CIP. The earliest the City Council could vote on the plan is at its Nov. 18 meeting.
    As Joyal explained to the councilors Wednesday night, to approve the CIP entails voting on three resolutions: the plan itself, debt-service projects, and non-debt projects funded by funds other than the City's general fund.
    The vote on adopting the plan is "is a statement of intent, but it does not bind you to anything," Joyal told the Council. "It tells me as your City Manager and anyone else in the City, this is your long-term plan on how things are going to happen in the City for upgrading roads, infrastructure, replacing equipment and so forth. From an operational perspective, it allows us to start making plans or continuing plans for replacing equipment, and perhaps not investing in maintenance in certain things because we know we will replace it in a timely fashion."
    The vote on debt-service projects is only for the year-one CIP projects approved by the City Council. The vote on the CIP's non-debt portion are projects funded by capital reserves accounts and grant funds. These two votes require a two-thirds majority to pass.
    To view the updated CIP projects, visit the City of Dover's CIP web page at https://go.usa.gov/xGt3j. The page also contains a video overview of the plan. A physical copy of the CIP can also be reviewed at City Hall and the Dover Public Library.
    For more information, contact the Dover Planning Department at 516-6008, email the Director of Planning and Community Development, Christopher G. Parker at c.parker@dover.nh.gov, or stop by the Planning Office, located on the first floor of City Hall.