Preview: City Council agenda (May 23)

The Worcester City Council meets Tuesday at 7pm. The agenda is here.

This week: Police and finance items. There are some interesting items which are just developments of issues we’ve already noted in recent months, so I’m skipping those for the sake of brevity. If you know of anyone else who’d like to get our weekly preview via email, the link is here.

A non-Council meeting of note: There is a public hearing on the WPS budget starting at 6:15 at the Durkin Administration Building. The budget is here [PDF].

  • Stop Smoking Outside the DCU: William Belcher has a citizen petition asking the city to enforce smoking policies at the DCU Center, specifically to make employees stop smoking at the entrances and exits.
  • Tax Breaks: The Manager has a report on recent tax breaks for development (TIFs) and which of them have a tax breakee who is not in compliance with the terms of the agreement. The report notes that over the past five years these TIF agreements have created 1679 permanent full time jobs, retained 4682 full time jobs, and added $202,000,000 to the value of real estate in the ciyy.
  • We Are Not in a Drought: The Manager notes we are no longer officially in a drought.
  • Preventing New Pawn Brokers: The law department has drafted an ordinance that would prohibit Worcester from issuing any new pawnbroker licenses. There are currently 6 of these businesses, and the ordinance would keep it that way.
  • Finance Items: There are a bunch of items that have made it through the Finance Committee and which the Council can now approve or discard. Councilors Luke and Economou are curious what it would cost to add 10 more police (especially if this would reduce overtime hours for existing police), Councilor Gaffney of course has an item about the city’s investment in Union Station,
  • More Police Living in the City?: Mayor Petty has an item asking if we can use a Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America program to give incentives to police and other public safety personnel to buy homes in the city.
  • Bike Police: Councilor Rivera has an item asking the police chief to “initiate a process to bring back police officers on mountain bikes.”
  • “Complete Streets””: Councilor Rivera has an item asking how the city’s doing with implementing Complete Street standards for our streets.
  • Plastic Bag Ban: Councilor Lukes has an item asking the Manager to get around to implementing a request from 2009 and 2010 to come up with an ordinance that would ban retailers from offering plastic bags. (I have one or two ancient petitions that were approved but never acted on, sometimes I think about bringing them back to the Council for old time’s sake.)

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