Monday, July 28, 2008

City Council Meeting, 7/28

Ok, it’s the fourth Monday of the month, which brings us here, to the public hearing for the citizens of Annapolis. You might remember that during the legislative meeting, citizens can speak about whatever they want, whereas here at the public hearing, you are limited to speak only on the bill you sign up for, and only when called upon. Make sense?

(Column intermission: halfway through writing the above paragraph, my attention was diverted to Alderman Finlayson, who opened the meeting by announcing that she went to one of our sister cities in Canada, where she toured a graveyard and learned about someone who started a business with a wheelbarrow. All thoughts immediately vacated my head, and I envisioned myself sipping sherry, dreaming of a time where I can watch 37 consecutive hours of Home and Garden Television, hi-def, and riding in a wheelbarrow.)

I wasn't really in the mood to stay long at the meeting tonight, so I didn't. There is one transportation/zoning/property related bill that was heard, which I have listed below. Everything else dealt with either the Kunta Kinte Festival or the Sidewalk Tax.

Public Hearings:
O:11-08: Prohibiting parking on Unpaved Services
People against: Tony Evans, Chris Ladue,

People for: Alderman Shropshire, Alderman Stankivic

Arguments For: cars on grass are ugly, neighbors complain. Cars destroy grass and cause runoff to surrounding creeks. Overcrowding needs to be addressed.

Arguments Against: This is a custom penalty ordinance. Let people park on their property if they own it. This encourages paving and the creation of impervious surfaces. The bill intends to limit car ownership and therefore rights of property owners. Laws exist to address the problems that this bill intends to address. Also, this is big brother extending his reach even farther.

O-21-08: Changes to Sidewalk Tax:
This one is confusing…I’ll sort it out in a full post devoted to the issue. Maybe.

O-24-08: Lease of City Dock For Kunta Kinte Festival
Also gets it own post.

There were several legislative items put on the agenda for first reader for fast track passage sometime in the future. There were also the items which recieved final votes: the sidewalk tax bill(s) and the Kunta Kinte Festival approval. (FYI both aforementioned issues went before public hearing only today—they voted on them at the same meeting.) See the future posts for details.

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