Here’s a recap of our live coverage of tonight’s Evanston City Council meeting.
The meeting is scheduled to start at 7:25 p.m.
A packet with information on the agenda items is available online.
Meeting called to order at 7:38 p.m.
All council members present, but Mayor Daniel Biss is not.
Ald. Eleanor Revelle (7th) chairs the meeting as mayor pro-tem.
She reads proclamation of October as National Long-Term Care Residents’ Rights Month.
SP1- Trilogy mental health crisis response program report
Now operating 24/7 … started on more limited schedule earlier this year.
Says having good collaboration with Evanston Police Department.
Revelle mentions new page on city website addressing mental health issues.
Related update on “The Living Room” project on the St. Francis hospital campus: Word from the architects is that it will cost about $600K to do needed updates, but only $250K so far has been budgeted.
SP2 – Parking study final report
Ald. Devon Reid (8th) says he favors increasing revenue from parking — calls underpriced parking a subsidy given to residents — giving away revenue needed to maintain services — including affordable housing and environmental policies.
Suggests using an “equity lens” for setting residential parking permit rates — to make it cheaper in his ward.
Suggests higher parking fines for violations downtown than in neighborhoods.
References the book “The High Cost of Free Parking.”
Ald. Krissie Harris (2nd) says doesn’t want higher rates to impact lower income residents.
Ald. Jonathan Nieuwsma (4th) says business districts are not flooded with customers — so he’s not willing to raise rates at this time.
Ald. Tom Suffredin (6th) asks how to reconcile this with the business district study due in January.
City Manager Luke Stowe says wants to wait until early next year when have the business district survey before considering possible rate changes. Says prefer not not to make any substantial parking rate increases this fall.
Ald. Eleanor Revelle (7th) notes that Wilmette has ample free on street parking — says she’s concerned about why that wasn’t included in the peer studies. Says there is a parking problem on game days around the campus.
Motion to accept the report and place it on file is approved.
SP3 – Plat of subdivision for 1224 Washington St.
Off consent: A1, A8, A12 (tabled) , P1, P2 (suspension of rules), P4 (failed in committee), H1, R1, R2
Consent agenda, with those exceptions, approved.
A1 – Bills list
Amended in committee to include payment of up to $2,100 to Reid’s intern.
Ald. Melissa Wynne (3rd) says prior councils have voted against funding that.
Corporation Counsel Nicholas Cummings says the change may create a potential violation of the open meetings act and would be improper procedurally because it’s a reconsideration of an action previously taken.
Reid claims it’s not an open meetings act violation.
Approved. Vote is 4-3-2.
A8 – Consultant study of concrete floor slab cracks at Crown Center
Price reduced to $12.8K.
Approved 7-2. Wynne and Nieuwsma vote now.
P1 – Vacation rental license for 2545 Lawndale Ave.
P2 – Planned Development time extensions for three projects
at 1012 Chicago Ave., 1900 Sherman Ave. and 605 Davis St.
H1 – Fair Housing Ordinance amendment
Protections for persons with criminal history or status as domestic violence victim. (Brings city ordinance into line with county fair housing ordinance.)
Approved 9-0 (with amendment by Revelle)
R1 & R2 – Adding co-sponsor provision to referrals committee process
Reid moves to hold. Burns seconds.
Call of the wards
Reid … Ward meeting 6 p.m. Thursday.
Burns … Ward meeting 7 p.m. Thursday.
Harris … Ward meeting Sunday, Oct. 2.
Council votes to go into executive session at 10:22 p.m. to discuss litigation.
Here is a thought, Reid. Rather than an “equity lens”, try using your own eyes.
Do you see a vibrant downtown? Do you see high occupancy in retail spaces? Are business owners telling you parking rates need to be higher? Do you see high parking space demand and limited parking supply which, in turn, would economically justify higher parking prices?
There is lack of stores and customers. Customers are dwindling because of panhandlers. Please do something.
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