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Tuesday, July 6, 2021

Ann Arbor City Council Preview: July 6, 2021


Exciting news gentle reader, tonight we get a special Tuesday edition of #a2council. Here's the agenda. Great news, A2AF is back from vacation, so make sure you check out their podcast episode on the city council meeting. 

The meeting kicks off with a short, 11 item consent agenda. CA-4 is a for purchasing Duo multifactor authentication software. Nice.  CA-6 is exciting. It's applying for a $7M grant from the DNR to purchase the old DTE Gasworks and clean the site. CA-10 is approving amendments to the Washtenaw Regional Resource Management Authority Articles of Incorporation. 

There are three public hearings on the docket tonight. PH-1/B-1 is on the second reading of TC1, Transit Corridor Zoning. Very exciting to see this moving forward as it has been mentioned in the Comprehensive Landuse Plan for almost two decades. This would allow greater density along corridors that are well served by transit and get rid of parking minimums. This is a really important step for providing more housing that isn't car dependent and will help Ann Arbor reach its ambitious housing and climate goals. PH-2/B-2 is an ordinance to amend the Planned Project Site Plan Modification section of the Uniform Development Code. PH-3/B-3 makse some important modifications to the Independent Community Police Oversight Commission. There is a good discussion of this on the A2AF podcast, which you should check out. 

There is one ordinance first reading on the agenda this evening. C-1 gives tenants a right of first refusal for the first 180 days of their lease. It also makes it so that landlords cannot start showing a property for the first 210 days of a lease. I think this is good. It'll give renters some time (and a winter) in their homes before they have to decide if they want to renew their lease. 

On to the resolutions. DC-1 is a resolution to establish an Council Ethics Rule 12 hearing for CM Hayner for his repeated use of slurs. DC-2 is a resolution to build a 24 MW solar array on the city landfill. 

Finally we have DS-1, a resolution to approve the bylaws of the Council of the Commons. There is something that bothers me about this. These bylaws would give two private groups, the Community Commons Initiating Committee and the Library Green Conservancy nominated by the Library Green Conservancy, the ability to each appoint two of their members to the Council of the Commons. Personally, I just don't think it is appropriate to have private groups, with closed membership, appointing members to city boards and commissions. It is undemocratic. I hope this part gets changed. 

As always, gentle reader, I am probably forgetting some very important items here. What agenda items are you most looking forward to seeing. I am guessing that tonight will be another late night around the virtual council table. Hopefully we will see you there. The CTN stream starts at 7 pm. Make sure you follow the action on the #a2council hashtag.

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