Silver Bay City Council unanimously approved a 3.9% preliminary levy increase at a special meeting Monday, Sept. 23.

City Administrator Lana Fralich credited the nominal increase to moves to increase the street and capital asset funds to keep making improvements around the city.

The city isn't looking to take on many new projects next year, but plans to continue projects such as the Black Beach Campground and the preliminary treatment project at the wastewater treatment plant. Two new projects included in the preliminary budget include paving the City Hall parking lot and possibly the Mary MacDonald Center parking lot.

"Otherwise, everything is coming back to normal. We’ll be repevaluating our financial position and preparing for the next planning cycle," Fralich said.

The city also set its Truth in Taxation meeting for 6 p.m. Dec. 2 at City Hall.

Black Beach Campground project advances

Despite bids for the construction of the main building at the Black Beach Campground coming back higher than anticipated, the council voted 4-1 on Monday for the project to move forward. Councilor Carlene Perfetto was the single dissenting vote due to her consistent disapproval of tourism.

The project was budgeted for a total of $550,000. The lowest bid for the building of the two bids received came back at $664,000, around $109,000 over-budget.

Joe Rhein, on behalf of city engineering firm Bolton and Menk, presented the council Sept. 16 with the bid report and some options the city could take to lower the costs. Rhein suggested eliminating two eave overhangs on the front and back of the building and was waiting on a response from the contractor for a cost estimate. This move would only shave off about $21,000.

After continuing some conversation from the last meeting regarding the issue, the council ultimately voted Monday to push the project forward to allow it to remain on schedule and avoid postponing the grand opening of the campground in May.