At Tuesday’s meeting, the Council:
- discussed a report of rate recommendations for the City’s water and sewer services, which also includes proposed adjustments for miscellaneous fees related to utility services. The City periodically commissions a comprehensive study of what customers pay for their public utility services in order to ensure water, sewer, stormwater and street lighting rates accurately reflect true costs and align with community values. This year’s report recommends changes to the existing rate structure to address goals of conservation, affordability, rate stability, demand management, and equity between residential, commercial, institutional and industrial properties. The Council will continue to discuss the recommendations, and will hold a public hearing in the coming months before adopting a new rate structure, along with possible adjustments to existing fees.
- adopted two ordinances that will create Community Reinvestment Areas for portions of State Street and the 9-Line. CRAs are a function of the City’s Redevelopment Agency (RDA), and are a way to designate property tax growth that can be spent on improvements ranging from infrastructure (sidewalks, lighting, benches), to low-interest small business loans and grants, to purchasing blighted property for development, to implementing environmental design strategies that deter crime. Tonight’s action by the Council is the final step of a thorough process initiated by the RDA Board. Although it may take several years to generate significant funding to be spent in these communities, these new 25-year CRAs tools that will benefit residents. Council Members plan to discuss the State Street CRA Plan at the RDA Board meeting next week to clarify the extent to which mobility and safety for alternative forms of transportation, such as bikes, are addressed in the current State Street CRA plan.
- held a public hearing at which 10 people spoke about proposed changes to the City’s rules for Accessory Dwelling Units (also known as mother-in-law apartments). The proposed changes would allow ADUs in more areas of the City. The Council will hold another public hearing on October 16. Watch the briefing from the Council’s Sept. 11 meeting to better understand the various proposed changes and learn more at our website.