City Council Preview: December 10, 2018

Mimi Parseghian previews tomorrow night’s Lowell City Council meeting:

As Dick detailed in his Sunday post, there is a blockbuster motion on this week’s City Council agenda. It is motion number 6, submitted by Councilors V. Nuon and E. Kennedy “Request City Solicitor to engage in mediation with Plaintiffs, currently scheduled for 12/18/18, in a good faith effort to resolve the Lawsuit in a timely and reasonable fashion which resolution should include a proposed modification of the City’s existing electoral system from an At Large System to a Hybrid District and at Large System.”

If you have not had an opportunity to read Dick’s analysis, please do so.  This motion, if passed, will begin the process of changing how we elect our municipal officials.

In other business, the Administration has three motion responses on this week’s agenda.

 MOTION RESPONSES

Starr Avenue Paving Motion (12/4/18)   by Mayor Bill Samaras Request City Manager place Starr Avenue on the Paving List.  Response from Christine Clancy, P.E., City Engineer stated that Starr Avenue will be added to the paving list contingent upon the completion of any necessary subsurface utility upgrades, including National Grid gas and any other City utilities including wastewater and water.”

LED Street Lights Motion (11/20/18) by Councilor V. Nuon Request City Manager have Department of Public Works provide an update regarding the upgrading of City street lights to LED.

The 2-day response, prepared by Katherine Moses, Energy Manager, is full of interesting information.  She mentions that “The City of Lowell began upgrading 6,333 lights in December 2017 as part of the FY18 Capital Plan approved by the City Council. The project is currently 98% complete with some lingering punch list item.”  Also, the City has avoided $390,792 in annual electricity costs.

There is a 3rd response on the agenda.  It is a repeat from last week.  It is answering the motion by Councilor J. Milinazzo asking who is responsible for the upkeep of the school grounds.

INFORMATIONAL REPORTS

Perry Street Re-Configuration

Accept Resignation of Wayne J. Sevigny Sr. from Lowell Housing Authority

Appointment of Joanie L. Bernes to Lowell Housing Authority

Reappoint C. R. Krieger to Hunger Homeless Commission

VOTES FROM THE CITY MANAGER

Accept Donation of a used-van from the LRTA (Lowell Regional Transit Authority) to the Fire Department.

Vote Authorize City Manager accept gift from Mico H. Revocable Trust of Bronze Indian Maiden Sculpture.

Vote to increase the Cost-of-Living percentage rate for the City of Lowell Ordinance Employees. These are the non-union employees.  The vote will increase the salaries as follows:  period of 7/1/18 – 6/30/19, retroactive 2%; period of 7/1/19 – 6/30/20, 1%; on 7/1/19 and 1% on 1/1/2020; period of 7/1/20 – 6/30/21, 1 % 7/1/20 and 1% 6/30/21.

Vote to transfer $184,835 to purchase Council on Ageing bus.

Vote transfer $50,000 to purchase new Animal Control Vehicle.

MOTIONS

In addition to the motion mentioned above, the Council has submitted seven other motions.

Councilor R. Mercier Request City Manager allow Youth Build students under the leadership of artist Glen Szegedy to paint and restore statues and the City Manger back to a more brilliant beauty.

Councilor K. Cirillo Request City Manager provide an update to the City Council regarding what mechanism that the City has to put in place to uphold our commitment to the emission reductions of the Paris Agreement.

Councilor K. Cirillo Request City Manager have proper department review roadways in the city in order to take advantage of the new State Law, Chapter 90, Section 17C, allowing communities to lower speed limits on busier roads.

Councilor K. Cirillo Request Environment & Flood Issues SC meet regarding groundwater issues and the Clay Brook Heights.

Councilor J. Leahy Request City Manager instruct DPD to study downtown this winter and come up with recommendations to attract business and consumers.

Councilor V. Nuon and Councilor E. Kennedy Request City Manager encourage City Solicitor to engage in mediation with plaintiffs, currently scheduled for 12/18/18, in a good faith effort to resolve the lawsuit in a timely and reasonable fashion which resolution should include a proposed modification of the City’s existing electoral system from an At Large System to a hybrid District and at Large System.

Mayor B. Samaras Request City Council direct City Manager break out costs of Transportation and Adult Education from cash contribution provided by the City in the Budget. (Request per School Committee)

Mayor B. Samaras Request City Council instruct City Auditor to provide members of the School Committee with quarterly reports on the money spent in each line item of the School Department Budget throughout the fiscal year. (Request per School Committee)

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