As a part of Worthington's annual budget discussions, City Manager Matt Greeson said, Worthington City Council must decide how much money to allocate to community organizations in the 2019 budget.
After final discussions Nov. 19, City Council is expected to vote Dec. 3 to adopt the final 2019 budget.
Budget discussions for 2019 started at an Oct. 8 council meeting. Worthington's city charter requires that an operating budget estimate and explanatory budget message be sent to City Council by the city manager 60 days prior to the beginning of each budget year. A proposed five-year capital-improvements plan also is submitted within this timeframe.
As a part of the budget process, presentations were given Nov. 13 by two larger community groups: The Peggy R. McConnell Arts Center of Worthington and the Worthington Historical Society.
City Council provides funding to the MAC because the city owns the building at 777 Evening St. and leases it to the nonprofit organization to operate the community-arts center, Greeson said.
The Worthington Historical Society is considered part of a larger special-group funding allocation, Greeson said. The fund has approximately $111,250 available in the preliminary 2019 budget that can be allocated to these groups.
The MAC is asking for $225,000 for 2019, which is the same amount already appropriated for it, according to Greeson. The center would use $220,000 for operations and $5,000 would come from a city fund for community-arts programs, according to city records.
Executive director Jon Cook said the MAC serves 85,000 people a year and provides paid and unpaid opportunities to 526 artists.
He said 38 percent of patrons come from the Worthington Schools district and the greater Worthington area.
The Worthington Historical Society is asking the city of a $5,000 increase for 2019 from 2018, which would be $32,500, according to Anne Brown, a Worthington spokeswoman.
Kate LaLonde, director of the Worthington Historical Society, said the historical society is looking to increase the involvement of younger people in events. LaLonde said the society also plans a fundraising effort to replace the masonry and planters on the High Street side of the Orange Johnson House, 956 High St., which will cost $145,000.
"It's been repaired many times and now just needs to be replaced," she said.
LaLonde said community engagement would be a focus of the historical society going forward.
"Not everyone might see themselves as a member and that's OK," she said.
LaLonde said the society also is focused on marketing its research services.