The Rapid City Council awarded almost $24 million in funding through the city’s Vision Fund to fourteen community and three city-proposed projects for use over the next three years. According to the Rapid City Journal, the Vision Fund was originally created during the 1970s, when citizens approved a half-cent sales tax increase to fund the construction of the Civic Center.
Funding recommendations for city council members come from the citizen-led Vision Fund Committee, which recommended $16.57 million go toward recommended community projects. The council went above that figure and awarded $17.49 million.
Rapid City Collective Impact’s One Heart campus received $3.9 million, one of the largest awards granted. The funds will be used to acquire property along the 100 and 200 blocks of Kansas City Street for the “transformation campus”. The campus will host a number of local social service providers in efforts to assist Rapid City’s homeless, near-homeless and impoverished communities. The project is expected to open in approximately two years.
Other community projects receiving sizeable awards included Destination Rapid City, Black Hills Sports Inc., Rapid City, Youth and Family Services, the Rapid City YMCA, Abbott House, the Rapid City Club for Boys, the Rapid City Softball Association, Black Hills Works, and Main Street Square. Smaller amounts were also approved for Harney Little League, Rapid City BMX, and the Canyon Lake Activity Center.
Mayor Steve Allender also outlined three proposed city projects for the council’s consideration in the allotment of Vision Fund monies. These projects included Dinosaur Park, a military appreciation park, and renovations to City Hall. The council awarded the full amounts requested for all three projects.
Rapid City finance director Pauline Sumption said that the city had just over $24 million to allocate to Vision Fund projects, while a $1 million contingency fund will be kept in case city sales tax collections came in lower than expected in the next three years. Many of the large awards will be split evenly over the three-year period. One Heart’s award may be revisited later if the amount needed for renovations to city hall ends up being less than what was awarded.
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