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The good news for this city, which is stretching its financial resources like an elastic band, is the approval of an $873,000 low-interest loan by the Community Impact Board.

That plus previous good news - that the city will be allowed to salvage much of the material that has resulted from DOT's rebuilding Main Street - means that Manti will be able to reduce by perhaps $300,000 the estimated cost of its street project.Part of that project is under way now - Main Street sidewalks being rebuilt while the DOT work is underway. However, the main phase - building two replacement bridges over a major channel and rehabilitating about 20 miles of city street - will be undertaken next summer.

The bridge and street phase will be done under contract, according to city recorder Bill Mickelson.

He explained that most of the recycled material to be used as underlay next summer will be had at a cost of around $3 a ton and the 3 percent interest loan will also help shave the original cost estimate for the project. That's lower interest than was considered likely.

"We should come out well ahead of our projected costs when the voters approved the project," Mickelson said.

Still to be decided is how to fund the annual payments on the CIB loan. The City Council is mulling that one over before reaching a decision.

Several options are available, and the council is invited public input.