Council Members Differ on Discretionary Fund Limits, Regulation

by Gabe Bullard on March 29, 2011

The Louisville Metro Council will likely take action in the coming weeks to further regulate grants from two funds used by council members to finance projects and organizations in their districts. But lawmakers disagree over how best to prevent abuse.

At least one council member has asked the mayor to cut the $175,000 that members can allocate each year. However, other council members have pushed to give the Office of Management and Budget oversight of each grant rather than cut the funds.

Councilwoman Tina Ward-Pugh supports the latter option. She says her colleagues who hope to cut the funds represent wealthier districts that can function without city grants to pave sidewalks or fund community groups.

“They are primarily people who already have two or four or eleven or sixteen smaller cities in their districts who handle sidewalks and paving and streets and paving and recycling,” she says.

The calls to regulate the grant funds grew louder this month, after Councilwoman Judy Green was accused of misappropriating city dollars.

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