Monday, March 2, 2015

What you may not know: Week of March 2

The Appleton Common Council will hold its regularly scheduled meeting on Wednesday at 7 and there's very little new business to discuss, so today's post will feature updates on the three items we discussed last week:

Expo center

Last Monday the Community and Economic Development Committee met for well over five hours to discuss in great detail many of the questions surrounding the proposed Fox Cities Exhibition Center. You can see a list of the questions and answers here. All told, the most notable decision made on Monday was a move by the committee to bring the land purchase agreement, which has been held since late January, back onto the council agenda for this Wednesday's meeting. In light of that decision, the resolution calling for a halt to the project has been put on hold by the committee.

Last Monday's extended meeting clarified a lot of the issues surrounding the expo center project, but unfortunately it did not alleviate my concerns about moving forward. I've written about my concerns multiple times and won't re-hash them at length here, but I still think the risks involved city ownership and the possibility that operating this facility could become a line item in the budget are being understated, and I remain concerned regarding the challenges of crafting a management agreement that won't need to be revisited and potentially weakened if or when the Radisson Paper Valley is eventually sold.

At this point I think we've probably had all the conversation we need to have on this topic. I'm glad we're finally going to get an opportunity to vote on whether or not we should proceed.

Ballard/Ashbury traffic control

Last week the Municipal Services Committee voted 5-0 to approve ordinance changes related to the installation of a new traffic signal at the intersection of Ballard Road and Ashbury Dr, the corner to the southwest of North High School. This item should pass council this Wednesday and everything continues to be on pace for the work to take place this summer.

Northland Avenue stormwater pond

Last Wednesday the Finance Committee voted unanimously to approve the purchase of a piece of property just outside the city in Grand Chute to use for a stormwater detention pond as part of our project to improve flooding issues near the northwest corner of the city. The assessed value of the property to be purchased is $202,000.

You can see agendas for all of this week's meetings and the full schedule at the city's Legistar page.

Keeping you informed on issues that may impact you around the city is one of my primary goals as an alderman. Making the council's activity as accessible as possible to as many people as are interested is part of my goal to make it easier for more people to get involved with issues that matter to them.

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