City council 7/08/14: agenda

PRELIMINARY MATTERS:

1. Call to order
2. Roll call
3. Pledge of allegiance to the flag
4. Agenda approval
5. Proclamations/presentations/recognitions

PUBLIC COMMENTS:
Agenda items (5 minutes allowed per person)
Non-agenda items (2 minutes allowed per person)

CONSENT AGENDA: The following items will be adopted on a single motion without discussion unless a councilmember requests separate consideration.

1. June 24, 2014 Council Meeting Minutes

NEW BUSINESS:

1. Resolution 2014-53 – Final Sight Plan Approval for Detroit Resource Recovery

2. PUBLIC HEARING – Amending Animal Control Ordinance
i) RES 2014 – 54 Deleting Sections 90.065 to 90.069 of Animal Ordinance (Zwolak)
ii) RES 2014- 55 Final adoption of changes to the Animal Rights Ordinance

OTHER ITEMS:

1. Mayor’s Report
2. Mayor ProTem’s Report
3. Comments by Individual Council Members

PUBLIC COMMENT

ADJOURNMENT

Special meeting 6/20/14: agenda

AGENDA
SPECIAL CITY COUNCIL MEETING
To Consider Liquor Control Ordinance and Determine whether a Hearing should be held regarding a Recommendation to the Michigan Liquor Control Commission to Revoke the Liquor License and Permits of the Ice Bar LLC d.b.a Club Aces.
HAMTRAMCK, MICHIGAN
June 20, 2014
9:00 A.M.

PRELIMINARY MATTERS:

1. Call to order
2. Roll call
3. Pledge of allegiance to the flag
4. Agenda approval

PUBLIC COMMENTS:

Agenda items (5 minutes allowed per person)

NEW BUSINESS:

1. Closed Session to consult with City Attorney regarding strategy in connection with pending litigation:
a. Shaya v. Hamtramck (14-cv-11112),
b. Taras v. Hamtramck (14-11954),
c. Police and Fire Retirees v. Hamtramck (14-000316).

We believe having such a session in an open meeting would have a detrimental financial effect on the litigating or settlement position of the City. Our basis for the closed session is MCL 15.268(e) and MCL 15.268(h).

2. First Reading: New Liquor Control Ordinance
3. Chief Garbarino Letter to Council re: Ice Bar LLC d.b.a Club Aces
4. Resolution 2014-4? – Acceptance of Wayne County Hazard Mitigation Plan

OTHER ITEMS:

1. Comments by Individual Council Members

PUBLIC COMMENT

ADJOURNMENT

City council 6/10/14: agenda

PRELIMINARY MATTERS:

1. Call to order
2. Roll call
3. Pledge of allegiance to the flag
4. Agenda approval
5. Proclamations/presentations/recognitions

PUBLIC COMMENTS:
Agenda items (5 minutes allowed per person)
Non-agenda items (2 minutes allowed per person)

CONSENT AGENDA: The following items will be adopted on a single motion without discussion unless a councilmember requests separate consideration.

1. May 27, 2014 Council Meeting Minutes

NEW BUSINESS:

1. Resolution 2014-38 – Approving the Sale of 10201 Jos. Campau
2. Resolution 2014-39 – Approval of Street Closure at Col. Hamtramck Homes
5. Resolution 2014-40 – Approving Detroit Area Agency on Aging 2015 FY Plan
6. First Reading – Changes to Snow Ordinance
7. First Reading – Change to Purchasing Ordinance
8. PUBLIC HEARING – Fireworks Ordinance
a. Resolution 2014 – 41 – Adopting Changes to Fireworks Ordinance
9. PUBLIC HEARING – Noxious Weeds Ordinance
a. Resolution 2014 – 42 – Adopting Changes to Noxious Weeds Ordinance

OTHER ITEMS:

1. Mayor’s Report
2. Mayor ProTem’s Report
3. Comments by Individual Council Members

PUBLIC COMMENT

ADJOURNMENT

City council 5/27/14

The format for my council notes is changing to be less formal and more true to my personal experience of the meeting. Background information is included in italics.

The resolution approving a site plan for 8825 Vincent/3900 Christopher was removed from the agenda by the EM. This may be due to an unanswered question regarding the existence of an easement for a water main that runs through the property.

The news crews from FOX2 and WDIV were obviously set up to run a story about citizens being outraged by the shooting at Club Aces last weekend, but only one very level-headed neighbor and Cathie Gordon spoke about it during public comment.
Apparently none of this talk was saucy enough because FOX2 used footage of a man speaking in support of backyard chickens and goats during the public hearing on the animal rights ordinance for their story.

The last time there was a shooting at the club, an estoppel agreement was signed between the owner and the city to change the format to LGBT and eliminate radio promotions, an agreement that they have never followed. The club also agreed to pay the Hamtramck Police Department for a security detail outside. Cathie Gordon made the point during public comment that the club owes the city $60,000 for police services that were rendered, and then faulted the mayor for not knowing about the expiration of that agreement a month ago.

Cathie and Mickey Pokoj also spoke against the Animal Rights ordinance. Their main complaint seemed to be that some people don’t clean up after their current pets, and the new ordinance allowed more of them. A third resident thought that it would be messy and bad for the city. I spoke in favor of the ordinance and in support of vegetable gardens in front.

Under new business, the EM requested permission to take out an emergency loan for 10 years at 2.3% to finance MERS payments that were missed. Anam asked if there were plans to pay back a $500,000 loan from the water and sewer fund. Bhama Cairns, our city controller, said that they are trying to pay back the loan by the end of this fiscal year. Payments to MERS are current outside of those missed in 2010. Anam complained that Cathy Square didn’t appear to give the information to the council herself, and that the council isn’t privy to any plans to repay the loan from the water fund, let alone this loan. Karen remembered that the city applied for a similar loan before, and it was ultimately rejected. Bhama Cairns replied that the state is encouraged by the cost reduction amounts and cash flows.

Mohammed claimed that they know how to fix the budget and that they only brought in the emergency manager to reduce costs. He thinks that the manager is adding employees and not fixing anything, and claimed that there are shortfalls of $3-4 million dollars coming.

Karen supported the application, though she thinks the approval of this loan by the state is duplicitous because the city wouldn’t have needed the EM if they were given the loan before. According to Bob, Cathy Square told him that the MERS funding shortfall isn’t her responsibility to fix because it was the doing of the council, and Karen complained that the emergency manager is supposed to stabilize the city financially, regardless of when the costs were incurred.

Bob supported the loan because if the payment isn’t made to MERS, it will push the city into bankruptcy. He also lamented that this is exactly the same thing that happened the last time the city was in receivership; the budget gaps were filled with bonding, and the city spent years paying the debt off.

The application was approved 5-1, with Mohammed voting against it.

Carrie Lasly was appointed to the ZBA.

The sale of the Vet Park Lofts to IG Immobilien (?) for $142,000 was approved unanimously. Kathy Angerer explained that it took two bid cycles to sell this property because the first sale fell through, and the goal is to make it 4 residential units.

During the public hearing on the animal rights ordinance, Angel Salatrik of Tiny acres, a homeschooler, and I spoke on behalf of city goats and chickens and the sale and barter of eggs

In the discussion of the ordinance, Bob offered an amendment to reduce the number of cats and dogs allowed per residence from 4 to 2. Andrea and Titus opposed the change, but it passed 4-2. Owners of more than 2 dogs or cats have to get kennel permits.

Bob also tried to continue the ban on pigeon coops, but the motion failed when only he and Mohammed voted for it.

Titus offered an amendment to allow the sale and barter of eggs and chicks, as long as they are not being sold as a novelty. Bob opposed the amendment because he thinks that eggs from the grocery store are somehow safer and fresher. The other members of council disagreed and made the change. The animal rights ordinance, as amended, was approved for the final reading by a vote of 5-1. Only Bob voted against it.

The fire and police chiefs worked together on a new fireworks ordinance that complies with state law. The first reading passed unanimously.

The official first reading of the noxious weeds ordinance passed unanimously as presented. It includes a ban on the growing of “vegetables” in front yards. Karen spoke in favor of continuing the Hamtramck tradition of edible gardens in front, and Kathy Angerer agreed that it would be difficult to enforce. Kathy also said that volunteers from HCI are turning in code enforcement violations to the police daily.

Site plans for a salt storage building at Senior Plaza, a neighborhood grocery store on the corner of Klinger and Commor, and a major expansion at the St Joseph healthcare center on Conant were cordially received and approved with little discussion. The developer from the nursing home project was invited to show the presentation materials that he brought to the meeting. He explained that they will add a story to the top of their current building and build a second 3-story building behind it, which will raise the number of beds by 21 to 190, increase the privacy of the rooms, and add an additional 30-35 employees. The number of windows on the first floor will also be increased to conform with our zoning ordinance.

After the official business was finished. Paul Wilk was invited to speak about the fireworks show being planned for July 5th. Nice work, John Dropchuk!

Well after the news crews gave up on capturing angry talk about the shooting at Club Aces, Andrea urged the administration to keep on top of it. Max Garbarino replied that he is working on something, and August Gitschlag mentioned that the Club submitted an application to review their business license earlier in the day. Anam faulted the city attorney for the lack of action against the club and said John Clark is milking the city by charging in 15-minute increments for phone calls.

During the closing public comment period, Cathie Gordon complained that the financial report for the first quarter showed that the city was $500,000 in the red. She also spoke on Club Aces, asking the council if they would like to live near the club, with condoms, needles, crack pipes, and people having sex on the hoods of cars. The same person owns the club as when there were previous problems, and she thinks the council should demand that he appear before them.

City council 5/13/14: agenda

PRELIMINARY MATTERS:

1. Call to order
2. Roll call
3. Pledge of allegiance to the flag
4. Agenda approval
5. Proclamations/presentations/recognitions

PUBLIC COMMENTS:
Agenda items (5 minutes allowed per person)
Non-agenda items (2 minutes allowed per person)

CONSENT AGENDA: The following items will be adopted on a single motion without discussion unless a councilmember requests separate consideration.

1. April 22, 2014 Council Meeting Minutes

NEW BUSINESS:

1. Resolution 2014-25 – Appointment of Alexis Krot as Magistrate (Paruk)
2. Resolution 2014-26 – Recognition of HCI Award Winners (Zwolak)
3. Resolution 2014-27 – Calling for AG Office Investigation of Water/Sewage Tax Levy
3. First Reading – Animal Rights Ordinance (amended from 4-8-14 meeting)

OTHER ITEMS:

1. Mayor’s Report
2. Mayor ProTem’s Report
3. Comments by Individual Council Members

PUBLIC COMMENT

ADJOURNMENT

City council 4/22/14: agenda

RELIMINARY MATTERS:

1. Call to order
2. Roll call
3. Pledge of allegiance to the flag
4. Agenda approval
5. Proclamations/presentations/recognitions
a. Audit presentation by Alan C Young

PUBLIC COMMENTS:
Agenda items (5 minutes allowed per person)
Non-agenda items (2 minutes allowed per person)

CONSENT AGENDA: The following items will be adopted on a single motion without discussion unless a councilmember requests separate consideration.

1. April 8, 2014 Council Meeting Minutes
2. April 14, 2014 Special Meeting Minutes
3. Mayoral appointment of Lisa Straske to Hamtramck Historical Commission

NEW BUSINESS:

1. FIRST READING – Noxious Weed Ordinance
2. Resolution 2014 – 24 Transfer of Historic Minutes to State of Michigan Archives

OTHER ITEMS:

1. Mayor’s Report
2. Mayor ProTem’s Report
3. Comments by Individual Council Members

PUBLIC COMMENT

ADJOURNMENT

City council 1/28/14: agenda

PRELIMINARY MATTERS:

1. Call to order
2. Roll call
3. Pledge of allegiance to the flag
4. Agenda approval
5. Proclamations/presentations/recognitions/announcements

a. Presentation by Karol Wojtyla Park Committee

PUBLIC COMMENTS:
Agenda items (5 minutes allowed per person)
Non-agenda items (2 minutes allowed per person)

CONSENT AGENDA: The following items will be adopted on a single motion without discussion unless a councilmember requests separate consideration.

1. January 14, 2014 Council Meeting Minutes

NEW BUSINESS:

1. Resolution 2014-004 – 2014 Hamtramck Labor Day Festival (Clerk)
2. Resolution 2014-005 – 2014 Hamtramck Labor Day Parking Lot Use (Clerk)
3. Resolution 2014-006 – 2014 Labor Day 5K Race Street Closure (EconDev)
4. Resolution 2014-007 – Authorizing K.W.P.C. Historical Preservation Plan (Karpinski)

OTHER ITEMS:

1. Mayor’s Report
2. Mayor ProTem’s Report
3. Public Comments

NON-AGENDA ITEMS AND OTHER BUSINESS

New Council Members: Please make sure you make appointments with Margaret Scanio to fill out the necessary paperwork provided in your orientation binders.

Have you given a picture to the Clerk’s Office yet?

ADJOURNMENT

City Council 4/08/14: agenda

PRELIMINARY MATTERS:

1. Call to order
2. Roll call
3. Pledge of allegiance to the flag
4. Agenda approval
5. Proclamations/presentations/recognitions

PUBLIC COMMENTS:
Agenda items (5 minutes allowed per person)
Non-agenda items (2 minutes allowed per person)

CONSENT AGENDA: The following items will be adopted on a single motion without discussion unless a councilmember requests separate consideration.

1. March 25, 2014 Council Meeting Minutes

NEW BUSINESS:

1. First Reading – Amending Animal Control Ordinance 90
a. Resolution 2014-24 – Adding/Amending Section 90. Of the Hamtramck Code of Ordinances (Animal Control) – Chief Garbarino

OTHER ITEMS:

1. Mayor’s Report
2. Mayor ProTem’s Report
3. Comments by Individual Council Members

PUBLIC COMMENT

ADJOURNMENT

Hamtramck Banksy Authenticated

Update: Happy April Fools Day!

See also “Feral Swine Spotted near GM Poletown”, “Biotech Startup Coming to Hamtramck”, “Under the Painted Lady“, “Hustler Club at Shoppers World“, “Cashing in on Bankruptcy“, “City manager replacement found“, and “Religious Manufacturer Breaking Ground”.

I must say, I am surprised at the amount of attention this received. About 100 people took pictures, 2 women added their own work, 3 groups checked the mounts, one man took a discarded cane from behind the bulletin board, and one very nervous person in all black clothing partially removed one of the screws.

The replica of “Laugh Now” is a real painting, but it was produced with the help of talented Detroit artists who may take credit if they wish. The quotes by Banksy are from this article on Forbes.com. The rest is just plain made up.

A stencil on the corner of Sobieski and Commor in Hamtramck was painted by none other than British street artist Banksy.

This work is based on an earlier piece, “Laugh Now”, commissioned for a Brighton night club in 2002. The new message can only be a reference to the 555 Gallery and their intention to sell part of a wall taken from the Packard Plant in Detroit.

Banksy

We couldn’t believe it either, but when we heard from a friend of a friend that Banksy had again visited Detroit to make a statement about “commercialism, capitalism and the mechanics of the art market”, we sent a request to Pest Control, a service that issues certificates on behalf of the artist. Despite their promise of a “lengthy and challenging process”, they were quick to reply in this case.

“Graffiti art has a hard enough life as it is – with council workers wanting to remove it and kids wanting to draw moustaches on it, before you add hedge-fund managers wanting to chop it out and hang it over the fireplace.”

“For the sake of keeping all street art where it belongs I’d encourage people not to buy anything by anybody unless it was created for sale in the first place.”

City council 3/25/14: agenda

PRELIMINARY MATTERS:

1. Call to order
2. Roll call
3. Pledge of allegiance to the flag
4. Agenda approval
5. Proclamations/presentations/recognitions

PUBLIC COMMENTS:
Agenda items (5 minutes allowed per person)
Non-agenda items (2 minutes allowed per person)

CONSENT AGENDA: The following items will be adopted on a single motion without discussion unless a councilmember requests separate consideration.

1. March 11, 2014 Council Meeting Minutes

NEW BUSINESS:

1. Resolution 2014-021- Resolution approving Hamtramck Clean Sweep 2014
2. Resolution 2014-022- Resolution approving Knights of Columbus Tootsie Roll Drive

OTHER ITEMS:

1. Mayor’s Report
2. Mayor ProTem’s Report
3. Comments by Individual Council Members

PUBLIC COMMENT

ADJOURNMENT