We had another marathon city council meeting again tonight.
The first topic of discussion was the newly released audit from the State. Since some of the members had only received their copy today, Mr. Coffey asked for a meeting on a Saturday to go over the budget. The date and time decided on were 10/16/10 at 10:00AM. I do not know if this will be a closed meeting or if we the public are allowed to attend.
Mr. Zurschmeide asked Mrs. Garry when the decrease would take effect on the sewer bills. She said it will be on the November statements since sewer bills run a month behind water bills.
Mrs. Benedetti asked why there has been no paving since the council appropriated the 1 million. Mr. Rosenbarger said the milling person is working on a large project in Louisville but will get to us next week.
Next were the comments from the public. Several business owners spoke about how 1SI had helped them get started. Most prominently was John Van Cleave from T G Missouri. They plan a large expansion costing 3 million dollars, they will also hire 30 more employees. More on that later.
A-10-10 Ordinance for Appropriation and Tax Rates (this is the budget)
Mr. Caesar thinks the next year will be better for the budget since the only wage increase is the 1% longevity for the police and fire depts. The budget is based on the current insurance plan, if the employees accept the new plan there will be more savings. He also cannot understand why the city and the county each have a 911 system.
The vote was 3 yays Ceasar, Messer, Gonder, and 6 nays.
The second reading was the same.
A-10-11 An Ordinance to Fix the Non-Reverting Budgets for the Year 2011
The first and second votes were 1 yay Gonder, and 8 nays.
The council will have their meeting before voting on the third reading.
Then the real fun started:
A-10-08 Ordinance For The Appropriation of EDIT Funds
This was 1SI's request for $70,000. Mrs. Benedetti asked for an amendment which would reduce the amount to $30,000. The amendment passed.
Mr. Gahan brought up the recent political endorsements made by 1SI. He asked how endorsements made our city more attractive to new businesses, which is what he thought was the job of 1SI.
Mr. Dalby went to the podium to answer questions. He said the endorsements were made by a separate committee. He said the businesses wanted a voice and this is how it is expressed. Mr. Price questioned Mr. Dalby and 1SI's position on bridge tolls. Mr. Dalby said he did not want tolls either, he just wants the bridges built ASAP however that can be accomplished. Mr. Dalby went on to say that 1SI helped create 1,600 jobs and expanded the tax base by 80 million. He added that 90% of their funding is from private donors and the public funding can only be used for economic development.
The Ordinance passed 5 yays Coffey, Caesar, Benedetti, Messer, Zurschmeide and 4 nays.
Mrs. Benedetti tabled the next resolutions. Regarding the reserved parking places for residents, she wants to change from street signs to stickers for the cars.
Regarding T G Missouri, she tabled the tax abatement and the request for $150,000 matching funds for a new HVAC system until they can be amended. The council wants to put a time limit on the non-reverting fund for businesses to purchase equipment, make sure they purchase energy efficient equipment and use only local contractors.
When I left Chief Juliot was at the podium explaining to the council the request for matching funds to purchase radios, software, etc. Guess you'll have to read Daniel's report in the "Tribune" for that one.