The Opelika City Council will vote Tuesday night on a $63.2 million plan for next year’s budget and unveil new language that regulates where payday loan stores can do business.
The Fiscal Year 2020-21 budget goes into effect Oct. 1, as required by state law.
It projects sales tax collections to be off by about $1.2 million for next year, especially if local tourism takes a hit from less Auburn University football and basketball than usual.
The city will consider giving Opelika City Schools $3.3 million for help with operating expenses, as it does each year. The city also likely will spend an extra $140,000 next year to improve retirement benefits for its employees.
Payday loan changes
The proliferation of payday loan stores and other high-interest loan outlets in the city has gotten the attention of city leaders. The council will host a public hearing to vet new zoning language aimed at regulating where such businesses locate, including the following:
» “Studies have found that these uses tend to locate in lower income neighborhoods. In many instances, these uses cluster together which can have negative effects on surrounding properties,”
» Such “Alternative Financial Service Providers are prohibited unless the proposed use is located more than 2,500 feet from another financial service provider…”
» “Alternative financial service providers are prohibited unless the proposed use is located more than 200 feet from any property used primarily for a single-family residence…”
The council will meet at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the Municipal Court chambers of the city’s new public safety building at 300 Martin Luther King Blvd.
Get Government & Politics updates in your inbox!
Stay up-to-date on the latest in local and national government and political topics with our newsletter.