Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Headlines from City Council Meeting

Some headlines from last night's meeting- any reporter will tell you that the headlines are not written by them and frequently dont reflect the actual story- so there is the qualifier.
"$439,000 from the Slush Fund doled out to affordable housing projects"

"$850,000 loan from CAHIP help local developer buy Dogwood Properties, Saves 55 families from imminent eviction"
No non-profit could make this work, this loan provides at least 5 years of affordability for the families.

"Charlottesville Industrial Development Authority Renamed Charlottesville Economic Development Authority" that is to reflect that changing focus from industrial development to economic development.

"5 Years Later, City turns Jefferson School Over to Partnership to Applause"

"New (draft) Comprehensive Plan Adopted"
Dont worry it can be changed, it is a fluid document- common response to questions concerning mistakes and issues citizens have with the document. Query- has the plan ever actually been changed? Not to my admittedly limited experience. The plan is used to justify Capital Improvements and projects brought before the Planning Commission. PC has been working for two and a half years on this document, Council approved it with the final draft pending.

"8th Street & West Main Street Intersection Still Not Safe for Drivers According to Local Resident"
Interestingly, Mr. Gaines came before Council for the third time in about three months or so. In a recent Council meeting Council agreed not to change the parking/loading zone situation, but to request the police enforce the parking rules on that block. Turns out, according to Mr. Gaines, this hasnt really helped visibility for people turning onto W. Main Street. Interestingly, Council agreed staff should look into the matter again.

"Confusion leads to Definitive Direction for Staff on Camera Issue"
Under New Business- or is it Other Business another discussion of cameras on the downtown mall. Dave Norris publicized a letter sent by the Rutherford Institute (defenders of the Constitution) indicating it could help draft policies related to a public camera system on the mall that may protect liberties. Norris and other councilors seemed interested in Rutherford's assistance. This led to a discussion on what was approved last Council meeting and what the understanding of the Council now was. Anyway, it seems staff wanted to present everything to Council as a package, package being defined as policy and bids; but some Councilors want to have the policy first because it may dictate the bid proposals.

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