City Council to examine future allocation of Legacy Fund

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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – The Fort Wayne City Council is looking to reevaluate aspects of the Legacy Fund.

In Tuesday’s meeting, the council members discussed a resolution to create a study committee regarding the future allocation and usage of the fund.

Councilman Paul Ensley led the discussion explaining that the committee would take a look at the current restriction of a $30 million threshold as well as how the money is given out.

Currently, city council aims to maintain a $30 million balance in the Legacy Fund, but that goal will likely be compromised this year because of a $10 million pledge to Electric Works. Once that money is contributed, the balance would sit at $23.5 million, according to John Perlich, City of Fort Wayne spokesman.

The issue with the threshold was further spurred last week after city council decided to table the approval of funds for Science Central’s planetarium project.

Science Central applied for $500,000 from the Legacy Fund and was initially approved by that board back in February. City council later decided to wait to discuss funding for the planetarium due to the calculated break in the threshold.

Despite the recent hang-ups, the Mayor’s office remains confident in the current system in place.

“Through Mayor Henry’s leadership in making the Legacy Fund possible, we’ve been good stewards of the Fund, and the public can be assured that Legacy is an asset that is here now and will continue to be in the future,” Perlich said.

Still, some city council members hope a study committee will help develop a clearer plan for the future of the Legacy Fund.

“City council decided that it wanted to take leadership and study it comprehensively and make clear recommendations rather than giving mixed messages.” said Councilman Russ Jehl.

“We need to send a clear message to the Legacy Joint Funding committee, which reviews all the Legacy proposals, to say ‘We do want to preserve this corpus, and this is how we define it, and please only send the council projects that don’t invade this corpus,'” Councilman Paul Ensley added.

It is still yet to be determined who exactly would sit on this study committee.

The resolution to establish the committee passed the Regulations Committee and will continue to be discussed at council in the coming weeks.

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