Now that the election is over I'm looking forward to the next two years. I know I've been lax in posting to the Mayor's blog this last couple years. It is my intention to going back to writing at least weekly. I'm hoping these next couple years many of the articles I write will have a positive tone and others will explore the pros and cons of different ways to approach how the city does business.
Committee Reports - Public Works and Administration Committees
This Wednesday the Public Works committee had an agenda item "Public Works Projects and Capital Improvement Projects - Reports and Updates". This item had no read ahead material nor was I or the public given an indication of what projects we could expect to be discussed during the meeting. One of the items that was discussed was the possibility of adopting an energy aggregation plan for electricity and natural gas. This item was proposed previously and Ms. Kaleps and Ms. Vargo where very much against it then because this was right around the time the City franchised the trash collection and these council members did not have any desire to take these utilities to the public. Energy aggregation is different from the trash franchise because before it can be adopted it must be put on the ballot so residents can vote on it. I wasn't opposed to looking at the pros and cons then and I'm not opposed to looking at them now either. What I was disappointed about was that Ms. Kaleps was aware that this would be part of the discussion. Ms.Vargo did not seem surprised this was on the agenda. Mr. Lyons definitely was aware this would be talked about at this committee meeting. Since staff showed up with paperwork and a proposed ordinance they obviously knew it would be on the agenda. Who didn't know this was going to be talked about at this meeting? I didn't know, Mr. Starline didn't know and the residents of the city didn't know.
When I saw this item on the agenda I was hopeful. Reading that we were going to talk about Public Works projects I expected that we would be directing staff to put together a list of all the public works projects that need to be done over the next five years so that we could start on a five year capital improvement plan. I was also hoping that this topic would include parks projects. Although, discussing the need for acquiring a new fire engine typically belongs the Safety Services committee. If we were talking vehicles it may have been appropriate to discuss this too. Hopefully, soon our committee meetings will start to include standard government functions.
Administration Committee meeting.
I do have to commend Mr. Campbell for the professional way he moderates committee meetings.
During the committee meeting we did have a discussion about the salary ranges. This was a continuation of previous discussions on this subject. The pre-read for this topic contained information about comparable positions at other cities for four positions where our employees needed the maximum salary for their position to be adjusted so they could receive the same percentage range as the other employees. I'm disappointed with the end of the discussion because I stated I was alright with going forward with the original proposal when really I'm not. But I was satisfied with the discussion.