Monday, May 9, 2011

Live Blogging the Council Meeting

Starting with public comment...no vote to decrease time. Parliamentarian decision to allow carry-over speakers to speak both for the special session and for the regular session.

(Editor note: my blood pressure does not allow for me to accurately capture the tone and tenor of the speakers' remarks. Suffice it to say there is great passion being exhibited on all sides of the issue.)

(I take that back...I have a few comments...)

One note regarding outsourcing the library: even the most recognizable company involved in outsourcing libraries said they couldn't do what Troy does for the so little money.

Citizens sure do listen when council members speak. Public record speaks loudly. Good advice: don't say something you can't own up to later.

I'm pretty sure that the same speakers coming up to podium time after time insinuating grave dishonor isn't solving anything.

By the way...using Skype on a library computer is FREE. The Library Director specifically stated that some of our military service families use the library computers for that purpose, and one of our local anti-taxers was incensed by that. OUR RESIDENTS ARE DEFENDING OUR COUNTRY, and an anti-taxer would eschew their opportunity to Skype with their families for free at the library???

Listen carefully to what people say: do you want to support the ones talking about a great community on your side, or the ones constantly spewing negativity? Do you want to support the ones advocating for your children, or the ones throwing stones at military members? Do you want to support the ones working to protect your investment in your home, or the ones working to destroy our city???

Here's a thought on "how many ballots are we going to have?" Let's have just ONE MORE without any outside influences. Let's have ONE question on the ballot and allow the public a straight up or down vote. Who's game?

Public comment has now ended. Response from council is scheduled to be next.

One council response: Mr. Szerlag commented about Mr. Lamerato's work...states that one shouldn't shoot the messenger when one doesn't like the message.

Blah blah blah some boring stuff and routine business blah blah blah...is it really 10:30?? blah blah blah...consent agenda approved...blah blah blah...OH...here we go...

Mayor Schilling moved to ask for language to be worded for a ballot proposal for up to .7 mills for a 5 year time period for public library general operating purposes levied on the winter tax bill. This would be approx. 2.9 million the first year. Slater seconded it.

This would raise residential tax approx. $77/100,000 taxable value.

Schilling sharing that she sees this as a compromise -- will provide for less of a library than what we are used to having, but sees it as a necessary move right now. Slater asking for Schilling to clarify the .7 mills decision -- it's between funding what we had at a high point vs. the very low level service we have now.

Beltramini questioning if .7 is enough...suggests we may need to go up to .72.

Kerwin disheartened by having only a 5 year millage proposal that does not address the seven-day library.

Schilling responds that she feels council comments led her to believe that the group would not go for a 10 year, 1 mil. library.

Slater believes it's a good compromise and time to move forward.

Fleming asking for clarification on funding timing/tax bills, etc.

Howrylak affirming intent to have it on August ballot, Schilling reminds him it is contingent on final wording. Feels it's not urgent to do it in a special election in August. McGinnis brings up issue of bridge funding.

Howrylak brings up costs of keeping library open vs. closing it, what's absorbed vs. what is actual, etc. Suggests more research into numbers.

Discussion about keeping it dedicated to the library only and how that influences voters to be more likely to approve it.

Fleming still struggling with August time frame and having it dedicated.

Beltramini wants a clean vote sooner rather than later so we can move on. Howrylak continuing to dissent, argue, push for November, etc.

A vote to have language approved for a ballot proposal has passed.

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