SIOUX FALLS, South Dakota — Sioux Falls Mayor Mike Huether wants to spend nearly half a billion dollars over the next five years on construction projects in South Dakota's largest city.
The mayor's $492 million wish list includes expanded streets and bike trails, an upgraded storm drainage system and street light technology. He also wants to build a 12th fire station and more parks for people and dogs.
"There are cities, there are counties, there are states across America that fail to heed the warnings of their failing infrastructure. Not in Sioux Falls," Huether said.
The city can afford the projects because of a strong economy bolstered by burgeoning sales tax revenue, according to the mayor.
"Things are booming right now in Sioux Falls," he said.
The City Council is expected to start discussing the proposal later this month. A final vote isn't expected until September. Councilman Greg Jamison said the group will be busy "making sure the money is in the right place."
Councilman Rick Kiley said the proposed price tag is not really a shock to city leaders.
"It is a big city and it does take a lot of money to run this city, and we want to be sure we are meeting the needs of the citizens," he said. "I think (the proposal) reflects what the citizens of Sioux Falls want. It addresses our infrastructure and our city streets."