Monday, September 26, 2011

Toledo City Council Meeting September 20, 2011

My apologies...due to a problem with my email, I didn't get the Toledo City Council meeting notes from Sherry until today. Here they are with her comments about the proceedings in italics:

Toledo City Council Meeting

September 20, 2011

In attendance: Councilmen Martinez, McNamara, Craig, Steel, Waniewski, Sarantou, Copeland, Collins, Ludeman, Councilwomen Brown, Hicks-Hudson, Deputy Mayor Herwat. Councilwoman Webb had her baby.

I need to let you know the atmosphere. I arrived there at around 3:45. The place was packed. Every seat was taken, and at this point there is one row deep around the room. (They would not let anymore people in the room, it was two and three people deep around the room.) The Union was clapping, chanting, and waving flags. They were shouting, getting worked up, and there were things said, that I will not repeat. I ended up sitting in the back row. It was tough to hear, I did my best. The comments were flying as Council members entered. When Mr. Herwat and company entered the room, boos were heard everywhere. I kept hearing that the Mayor went to China on the taxpayer's dime. I tried to state that he didn't, but I was ignored. Union women (and I use the term lightly) stated that Webb should have been there with the baby. They would have done it. I looked at them and said that she had a C-Section with the first one, probably did with the second (I had two C-Sections). They excused that. Believe me, I'm no Webb fan, just stating facts. Ms. Brown opened the Meeting, letting everyone know that they will be escorted out if they cause a ruckus. The comments were flying, again.

Representative from the City (didn't catch the man's name) – the City will have a deficit of 5–8 mil – development 10 mil less – property taxes less – Income taxes down 20 mil – unemployment at 10.5% – benefits cannot be justified, 6.7 mil pension pick up, 2 mil insurance. We could end up laying off 130 people – we cannot afford to pay these things.

Vote for executive session – no – Steel, Collins, Copeland, Hicks-Hudson, Martinez - yes - McNamara, Waniewski, Craig, Ludeman, Brown, Sarantou. Motion failed.

Item 422 – Appropriation for 1st Phase of improve to Promenade Park, filling/grading & remove Water St, $750,000 CIP – refer back to Administration. *Prior to this reading, the agenda was turned over to Mr. Steel. He HAD to throw in his two cents. For what it is worth, here it is.* Steel - This is Democracy at work (I stated OUT LOUD that this was a Republic. We had just recited the pledge, “And to the Republic for which it stands”, I had multitudes of people around me. I was ignored.), and it is a good thing. Let me state that Collective Bargaining is a human right. (? SZ)

Item 423 – Amend TMC Ch. 2117, AFSCME Local 7, to implement terms and conditions of Fact Finding Report – Hicks-Hudson – Hold for 2 weeks – lets not make a decision tonight - it is premature to get rid of distrust. Copeland – Local 7 represents some 2,600 people - shame on the Mayor and the Administration – do the right thing – vote it down. (Hmmm, he must mean Issue 2?? Isn't this WRONG?! Isn't there a law? I just noticed this, as I typed. SZ) Collins – In 1979 Collective Bargaining in the State of OH, came under the Ferguson Act – Collective Bargaining doesn't need to be relinquished. In 2010 concessions were given – a true leader would do nothing that employees shouldn't do. Ludeman – this needs dialog – see what comes about – agree with the two week hold over. McNamara – agrees with the two week hold over. Sarantou – agrees with McNamara – negotiate/discussion agreement in two weeks. Martinez – it is not us vs. them. Vote to hold for 2 weeks – passed – all voting yes. Hold for 2 weeks. *Now 90% of the room leaves – noisily. I've moved up, so I can hear. There can't be anymore than 20 people left in the audience. Where are all these people when regular business is going on? These people were rude and crude. Good riddance.*

Item 425 – Resolution – Support integrated network of high-speed trains and expanded Amtrak service – adopted – all voting yes.

Item 426 – Authorize Administration to implement, enforce, and utilize HUD Section 108 Loan Program Policy – Martinez – this is an opportunity for economic Development – good team effort from the Port Authority. McNamara – states the same. Passed – all voting yes.

Item 427 – Resolution – Oppose proposed Congressional redistricting – Hicks-Hudson – Mayor is with Council on this issue. McNamara – letter to Toledo lobbyist – hearing today – we are not being silent about this. Adopted – all voting yes.

Item 428 - Purchase Laskey Road to Bancroft Street portion of abandoned CSX rail line for multi-use recreational trail - 1st Reading. Craig – UT to Dorr St. - you can get around Toledo on bicycles. (I did not understand why he said this, until Fred's Show the next day. Grrr! SZ)

Item 429 – Amend Ordinance 534-10 for proper accounting of ODNR GLRI grant for Environmental Services, $400,000 – passed – all voting yes.

Item 430 – Amend Enterprise Zone Policy with new section on job requirements – to Economic Development Committee.

Item 431 – Amend Toledo Expansion Incentive Program (TEI) Guidelines - to Economic Development Committee.

Item 432 – Grant 50% tax exemption for Chrysler Corp. $365M expansion and upgrade, retain 920, create 1105 - to Economic Development Committee.

Item 433 – Accept FirstEnergy grant for electrical upgrades at Standard Lofts, 34 Erie St, 75 Units, $40,000 – passed – all voting yes.

Item 434 – Grant 30' easement within Blair Park for United North Cranes Landing water source heat pump – passed – McNamara abstaining, rest voting yes.

Item 435 – Purchase foreclosed property at 4126 Ruskin Dr. for NSP model home, $41,000 NSP Funds – passed – all voting yes.

Item 436 – Accept ODOT grant for engineering/environmental study for Dorr St. (Upton-Byrne) Safety Project, $77,400 – passed – all voting yes.

Item 437 – Extend contracts 50/50 with N-Viro and S&L Fertilizer for biosolids at Water Reclamation, up to 90 days – passed – all voting yes.

Item 438 – Contract with S&L and Northwest BioEnergy for biosolids recycling/disposal program at Water Reclamation – to Utilities and Public Service Committee.

Item 439 – Expenditure to inspect and repair S&C switchgear at Water Reclamation, $25,000 Sewer Operating – passed – all voting yes.

Item 440 – Issue Water System Revenue Bonds, $40,000,000 - 1st Reading.

Last Call:

Hicks-Hudson – 1) Refuse and recycling pick up, September 24th, 420 E. Manhattan St, from 9 – 12. 2) Meeting about refuse and recycling, September 26th, Main Library, from 6 – 8. 3) Thanks to George Robinson for the tour of the Water Facility.

Ludeman – go Tigers!

Sarantou – Thank you for the success at the Greek-American Festival – Finance Committee meeting on Thursday.

Brown – going to Columbus to retire – keep it in Council .

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