NORMAL, Ill. (WMBD/WYZZ) — Wednesday, staff with the Town of Normal worked through the proposed FY 2022-2023 budget with the town’s council members.

The Town of Normal Finance Director, Andrew Huhn, said last year the town experienced a lot of impact from COVID-19, having to cut back on positions, and capital funding in various areas. He said the proposed budget council members saw Wednesday looks to reverse a lot of that.

“Good revenue streams kind of post-pandemic impact to the economy, it came back a lot faster than we expected, we’ve also seen internet sales taxes come on board since January first of 2021, so we’re seeing sales from internet versus just retail physical stores,” said Huhn.

He said that, coupled with economic development from Rivian helping boost consumer spending in the local economy, has raised the revenue picture for the town.

He added, that additional revenue would be used for various significant projects.

“Mostly capital funding, road funding, these are areas we’ve funded in the past, we’re able to fund them a lot more this year, the next 5-year budget, we’re gonna be able to do some staffing increases to help in critical areas where it’s needed,” said Huhn.

He said they are also planning to pay off more than $8 million in debt this fiscal year.

“That’s a wonderful thing to get done, it frees up a lot of interest cost, so we’re glad to have that happen, that’s all from surplus money and good revenue picture for this year,” said Huhn.

Something to note, the town is planning to begin construction on a new fire station in the upcoming fiscal year, the proposed budget sets aside $4.9 million to do so.

Huhn says they will continue to discuss changes to the budget with council members and hope to have it finalized by the first or second meeting in March.