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The Vidalia Board of Aldermen reviewed finances and the budget during its regular meeting Tuesday night while updates on port funding and construction of the new $7 million substation was discussed.

Town Accountant CPA Debra Moak’s financial report for the town through April 30 noted that the net change in the fund balances was $479,801 for the General Fund, $2,140,085 for the Special Revenue Fund, -$824,848 for the Enterprise Fund and -$38,252 for the Government Wide Fund.

Mayor Buz Craft noted that while hydro income remains strong overall there was a 30-day period when income dropped because the hydroelectric plant was shut down for maintenance.

Concerning the new substation, the board adopted a resolution awarding “project for procurement of (3) 115 kV SF6 gas circuit breakers to Electric Equipment Enterprises on behalf of ABB, Inc.,” and authorized the mayor “to execute any and all documents necessary to complete the project.”

The board also approved a resolution “awarding project for procurement of (2) 20 MVA 115-13.2 kV two-winding transformers to Pennsylvania Transformer Technology, Inc.” and authorized the mayor “to execute any and all documents necessary to complete the project.”

Concerning the Vidalia port, Concordia Economic Development District Executive Director Heather Malone said that during the last legislative session there was $8 million in priority one capital outlay funding for the port. Afterward, she said, $4.25 million was moved up to priority one, which means the cash is available.

Engineers are still doing design work for the next phase and working on obtaining permits.

She said the town has provided its 20 percent local match to the state funding because it is absorbing the engineering costs.

Craft said work on the slackwater port, including underwater welding, is underway.

In other action, the council:

Set the millage rate for 2020 at 3.37 mills.

Voted to hire Silas Simmons LLP of Natchez to provide audit services for the town for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2020.

Approved occupational licenses and outdoor sign applications.

Entered into an executive session to discuss personnel issues involving the Vidalia Police Department.

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