Thursday, January 30, 2014

Ann Arbor City Council preview for 3 February 2014

Hey! It's time to make sure you have an ample supply of popcorn and appropriate libations and a copy of the Ann Arbor City Council preview to get ready for the meeting of Monday, 3 February 2014.

As always, things can come and go from the agenda until the last possible moment. If you want the absolute latest from the original source, see Legistar, the city's public posting of meeting notices, agendas, and minutes for many (but not all) city boards and commissions as well as for all of City Council. The meeting details for 2/3/2014 are here.

A preview is also here from the Ann Arbor Chronicle, and sometimes the Ann Arbor News writes a pre-meeting story going into more details on some element of the meeting.

UPDATED: Friday with new information.
INT-1. Proclamation honoring Eastern Michigan University's Alpha Phi Omega fraternity for their work in Ann Arbor parks volunteer days.

MC-1, Mayoral communications. Appointments, confirmations: Jim Simpson to the Ann Arbor Public Arts Commission, Daniel Lee to the Ann Arbor Housing Commission, Paige Morrison to the Park Advisory Commission and Peter Woolf to the Public Market Advisory Commission.

MC-2 is not on the agenda yet but is typically mayoral appointments proposed. In general, proposed appointments are read at one meeting and then approved at the next.

PH-1: public hearing for the Germain Motors site plan; this is the auto dealership formerly known as Howard Cooper on S State St.

A-1. Meeting minutes for the 22 January 2014 meeting, plus redacted copies of all email sent to and received by City Council members during the meeting.  (The email file appears to be corrupted; a note has been sent to the clerk.)

Consent agenda (CA-x) items are typically voted on in a batch without debate, though council members can pull any of them from the list to discuss separately.

CA-1. Pay $66,544.00 to Altech Mechanical Service to replace the boiler at Fuller Pool.

CA-2. Pay $36,500.00 to Washtenaw County for the city's share of the 800 Mhz radio communications system.

CA-3. Accept $80,499.25 from the City of Chelsea for outsourced IT services.

CA-4. Accept a grant of $25,736.00 from the Firehouse Subs Public Safety Foundation Corporation (a 501c3) to fund purchase of eleven (11) Automatic External Defibrillators (AEDs).

CA-5. Street Closings for Fool Moon - Friday, April 4, 2014.

CA-6. Street Closings for Festifools - Sunday, April 6, 2014.

CA-7. Accept Insurance Board minutes of January 23, 2014. Multiple claims for sewer backups on December 12, 2013 were denied.

Now to controversy.

C-1. Amend the Public Art Ordinance to return to their funds of origin public art funds (including pooled funds) that were allocated under the previous percent-for-art ordinance. Sponsor: CM Lumm.

C-2. No Smoking Ordinance to prohibit outdoor smoking within 20 feet of bus stops,  entrances, windows, and ventilation systems of Blake Transit Center, and entrances, windows and ventilation systems of any City Building. Also authorizes the city administrator to mark parks or portions of parks as non-smoking. Sponsor: CM Warpehoski.

DC-1. Liquor license non-renewals. (This is usually amended right down to the last moment as tavern owners clean up their acts to avoid losing their livelihood.) The Arena, Banfield's, and Cafe Zola all have outstanding bills due to the city and are recommended to have hearings on non-renewal set for February 25, 2014; all other establishments are to have their licenses renewed.

DB-1. 8 votes needed to extend the contract of Aaron Seagraves as Public Art Administrator, $18,500.

DB-2. Germain Motors site plan.

DS-1. Changes to the City Planning Commission bylaws.

DS-2. $398,703.00 to Hubbell, Roth and Clark for Geddes Avenue improvements planning and engineering.  Complete reconstruction of Geddes Avenue beginning in 2015 is planned, with water and sewer mains, road rebuilding, and non-motorized improvements. This is about half a mile of new road plus new service to about three dozen parcels. Construction of this project is expected to begin in the spring of 2015 and may continue through 2016, so plan your alternative commute now!

DS-3. Resolution to exercise right of first refusal on the Edwards Brothers Malloy property (8 votes required).

Reports and communications are usually approved without consideration or dissent.

F-1. Fourth quarter 2013 investment report.

F-2. AAATA financial and performance reports for fourth quarter 2013.

F-3. Environmental Commission Workplan 2013-2014.

Meeting minutes from commissions and boards are usually (usually) approved as a formality.

Minutes are received from the Public Market Advisory Committee (November 2013), Liquor License Review Committee (September 2013), LDFA Board (July 2013!), Environmental Commission (October 2013), Ann Arbor DDA (December 2013), and the Downtown Area Citizens Advisory Council (January 2014).

Of these the last is perhaps the most noteworthy; only two members of the DACAC were in attendance at the January meeting, with no quorum presumably reached, yet the minutes proceed as though there were a regular meeting.


  1. Do you have a favorite popcorn recipe for council meetings Ed?

  2. You can get some fine popcorn at Ann Arbor Farmers Market or from People's Food Coop. Get a soup pot, put a thin layer of oil at the bottom of it, and heat on high until the oil starts to shimmer. Toss in one or two kernels, and when they pop, pour in the rest. I usually aim to cover the bottom of the pan with kernels.

    (Note to self, buy more popcorn.)