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COUNCIL: March 16, 2021 Meetings

At their March 16, 2021 meetings:

  • The Mayor updated the Council about $6 million for SLC from the U.S. Treasury Department for pandemic-related rental and partial utility assistance.
  • The Mayor also reported on additional Federal funding (The American Rescue Plan) to help with pandemic-related issues. $87 million is expected to be used in multiple areas in an equitable manner in the coming years.
  • The Council took action on several land use requests.
  • The Council honored a former Council Member who passed away last week, Roselyn Kirk. She served District Six from 1985 to 1996.

Council Work Session items
The Council received:

  • an informational update on relieving the condition of people experiencing homelessness through the ongoing activities of the Community Commitment Program and the accompanying Resource Fairs. The Fairs include community partners as part of the outreach to people in the encampments. Police presence is routinely part of the outreach efforts for many reasons, including requests for support by the County Health Department, one of the partners.
     
  • an informational update on affordable housing and gentrification. The Mayor pointed out that SLC is the only Utah City with a dedicated stream of funding for affordable housing, $65 million since 2016. The Mayor’s team hopes to have completed a gentrification mitigation study in the next year which could inform how these or other dollars are spent in the future. It will include a public engagement process.
     
  • an update on recent efforts on various projects related to racial equity and policing in the City:
    • the Racial Equity in Policing (REP) Commission continues to meet regularly, usually weekly. Subcommittee meetings are scheduled tomorrow, and the next full REP meeting is scheduled for March 24 at 5 pm.
    • Read: More on the Commission

  • an informational update from the Police Chief and the Human Resources Department Director who gave reports about improvements to the City’s process for officer recruitment, hiring and promotions. This briefing focused on updates to Human Resources and Police Department policies and practices that guide the process to recruit new officers, determine which candidates are hired and how existing officers are promoted and trained.
    • For example, the youth Explorer program currently has an ethnically diverse membership and is a regular path to become a PD employee.
    • Council Members asked about lessons learned from 2020; what is unique about the SLC process; and how the REP can be involved in the process.
    • This was the second in an ongoing series of Council discussions about policing and related topics in the City. These sessions will be published on the Council’s website for future reference.

Other Agenda items
The Council:

  • was briefed about potential changes to the current City budget. The proposed budget amendment includes $6 million from the U.S. Treasury Department for rental assistance (with some utility payments possible) and money for people experiencing homelessness. Also in this amendment is funding to host the National League of Cities Conference in November 2021, an outdoor business activity assistance pilot program, and a needs assessment of the Police Department, among many other items. Council Members asked about ongoing costs of changing employee positions in the amendment. Council supported the process of moving ahead with some of the new positions. Another briefing is scheduled for March 23. The Council will hold a hearing to accept public comment on this on Tuesday, April 6, at 7 p.m.

  • received a briefing from Dan Nackerman, the Executive Director of the Housing Authority of Salt Lake City on recent plans, projects, programs, and reports. The Housing Authority is a federally-funded agency that provides rent subsidies and promotes affordable housing for income-eligible people in Salt Lake City. The agency helps an estimated 10,000 people per year with a variety of housing. Three major projects are in the works. More: www.haslcutah.org/

Formal Meeting items

  • The Council held public hearings on six items. The first three items, all grant submissions, were heard as one public hearing. The hearings were closed and will be voted upon at a future meeting:
    • Grant Fiscal Year 2022-27 – East Downtown 200 South Transit Hub
    • Grant Application: Assistance to Firefighters Grant – Fire Equipment Purchase
    • Grant Application: Justice Court Implementation Lab Initiative – Online Virtual Platform Tool
       
  • The Council accepted public comment for changes to the current Library budget and closed the hearing. Tentative Council action on this item is scheduled for Tuesday, April 6.
     
  • The Council accepted public comment for an ordinance that would amend various sections of the Salt Lake City Code pertaining to off- street parking regulations. The Council closed the hearing and deferred action on this item to a future meeting.

  • The Council accepted public comment, more than 20 people, for an ordinance that would amend the RMF-30 (Low Density Multi- Family Residential) Zoning District. The changes aim to remove zoning barriers to multi-family housing developments in RMF-30 zoned areas of the City. Many commenters shared concern about the impact the change could have on affordable housing in the City and what types of development would occur without other safeguards. The Council closed this hearing and deferred action to a future meeting until pending amendments that would protect existing affordable housing and encourage future affordable housing are brought forward for potential consideration and adoption.

The Council also took action on:

  • an ordinance that would close a small portion of an alley at approximately 740 West and 746 West 900 South. The proposal would allow the petitioner to square off the southwestern corner of his property for a proposed future multi-family residential and commercial development. The Council adopted the ordinance.
     
  • an ordinance that would rezone properties at 706 to 740 West 900 South and 710 to 739 West Genesee Avenue, including portions of two alleys, from M-1 (Light Manufacturing) to R-MU (Residential Mixed Use). The applicant intends to develop the remaining portion of the site with multi-family residential housing that is not currently permitted under the existing zoning designation. The Council deferred action to a future meeting.
     
  • an ordinance that would amend the Sugar House Master Plan and Zoning Map for property at 2903 South Highland Drive. If approved, the changes would allow for potential future development of the site. The Council adopted the ordinance.
     
  • an ordinance that would rezone the properties at 1301 and 1321 South State Street. The applicant requested the rezone because the new zoning district better aligns with potential use of the corner lot and potential for a new mixed-use building, which would replace existing buildings on the parcels. The Council adopted the ordinance.
     
  • an ordinance that would amend the zoning map and Central Community Master Plan for properties located at 159 South Lincoln Street, 949 East, 955 East, 959 East and 963 East 200 South. The proposal would have allowed the applicant a larger multi-family residential housing development than what is currently allowed. The Council rejected this request in response to the community’s comments and concerns about the loss of affordable housing and the historic nature of the structures. This ordinance amendment fails.
     
  • The Council also held its regular open comment section, with people who spoke on various topics, including affordable housing.

All agenda-related comments received through any source are shared with the Council and added to the Council public meeting record.

Visit the Council’s agenda page for meeting documents and video or view an archive of prior meeting recaps.

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