Counties and town get money owed by state | SierraSun.com

Counties and town get money owed by state

Greyson Howard
Sierra Sun

The state government is paying back millions of borrowed money to California cities and counties, including Truckee, Placer County and Nevada County.

The State Controller’s office returned a total of $440 million in transportation funds taken in 2003-04 and 2004-05. Of that $440 million, Placer County should receive more than $2.7 million, Nevada County more than $1.2 million, and the Town of Truckee $110,477, according to the Controller’s office. The reimbursement was scheduled for Aug. 2.

“We are anticipating $2.7 million, but we haven’t seen it yet,” said Ken Grehm, director of Public Works for Placer County.

Tony Lashbrook, Truckee’s town manager, said the cities of Nevada County, including Truckee, Nevada City, and Grass Valley, had received their reimbursements from the state on Aug. 2.

Truckee received $50,385 for the 2003-04 fiscal year, and $60,091 for 2005-06, Lashbrook said.

“This is money we were anticipating,” he said.

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Jessica Price, the administration services officer for Nevada County, said they received the reimbursement on Aug. 3.

The state borrowed the $440 million from revenue generated by the passage of Proposition 42, which uses money from fuel sales tax for public transportation and state highway improvements, as well as city and county street and road repairs.

Prop 42, which was passed in 2002, was suspended by legislators because of the state’s budget crises for the two fiscal years between 2003 and 2005, Grehm said.

The fuel sales tax revenue was then diverted into California’s general fund during the proposition’s suspension, but is now being returned.

The money will be used by counties and towns for transportation purposes, officials said.

“We will use it to do a lot more work on the roads, such as re-surfacing,” Grehm said.

Truckee will also use the reimbursement to bolster transportation funds.

“We can use it for street repair, maintenance, improvement, and for transit,” Lashbrook said.

Projects in Truckee using the money will include the road slurry sealing, Prosser Damn Road reconstruction and replacing the box culvert at Trout Creek, Lashbrook said.

Improvements to the mouse hole on Highway 89 south, however, will not be covered.

“We need $10 million for the mouse hole,” Lashbrook said, “so this isn’t going to get it.”

Nevada County’s engineering and maintenance department is putting together a plan for use of the returned funds, Price said.