Speak Out Loud NA

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

City Council - Scribner Place

To all who have been debating the YMCA Scribner Place project, the City Council has announced they will be holding a "special" Workshop session at 6:30 Thursday night, 6/02/05 to discuss the Scribner Place project. The public is allowed to attend, but no comments or questions will be allowed (public meeting?).
Questions:
Why are they holding this special meeting instead of discussing this with the concerned public?
Why hold this meeting now when the council meets again next Monday?
Will they be discussing Bond issues, and if they will be backed with property taxes?
Will this raise our property taxes?

Although no questions will be taken or answered directly, this will be very informative.
I suggest for those of us who are concerned, or who may have differing opinions, or different information, that we attend this important meeting to find out some real answers.
It's time we know exactly what will be happening.

23 Comments:

  • Thank you, Laura, for the information about this special Council meeting. Why wasn't this meeting announced to the public? Who calls or sets up these
    special meetings?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 6:02 PM, June 01, 2005  

  • The meetings are generally posted in the City County building, on the bulliten board in the third floor hallway.
    I can't tell you who sets them up, but that's a good question. Anybody know?

    By Blogger East Ender, at 6:34 PM, June 01, 2005  

  • Laura,

    Thanks for the info. This is actually a good thing. The council is simply getting together to discuss the issues involved so as to be better informed about what they'll be voting on when the time comes. Given the often confused circumstances of previous votes, this may actually be progress.

    I have no idea what they'll decide to discuss. I suppose it depends on what they consider to be important or have specific questions about.

    The decision to open the meeting to the public is a good one, too, as I don't think they are required by law to do so (although I'm not completely sure). This makes the decision making process more transparent, not less so.

    While I don't disagree that the need for public input should probably be addressed at some point, I also think it necessary to give council members an opportunity to discuss an issue among themselves, debate pro and cons, etc. If the public is allowed to speak during a work session, that opportunity is often lost to long winded speeches and other antics, especially when concerned with a hot topic like Scribner Place.

    The police had to remove at least one person the last time these folks got together. I think a little peace and quiet to discuss an important issue is justified.

    By Blogger bluegill, at 6:38 PM, June 01, 2005  

  • Council Pres. Jeff Gahan has been calling these council workshop meetings. Could someone check to see who called this one
    for Thursday night? Who set up this meeting?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:06 PM, June 01, 2005  

  • Why bluegill, you suddenly sound much more diplomatic than usual.
    The premise that it's good for everyone to get together and discuss is a good one. However, since we all know it's a hot topic, why not hold more OPEN public meetings too?
    The public deserves to have their concerns addressed before the council minds are made-up for a vote(or, "so they'll be better informed about what they're voting on when the time comes."?!)
    Everyone knows there's been plenty of talk already.
    Furthermore, to post a "Special Workshop" about the YMCA Scribner Place...and "other issues", I believe it says.
    What "other issues"? Doesn't the public deserve to even be informed about what "other" will be discussed?
    Furthermore, the contention that this makes the decision making process more "transparent", would be laughable if it were not so very sadly not so.

    By Blogger East Ender, at 7:44 PM, June 01, 2005  

  • city council workshops aren't necessarily a bad thing in fact many cities and towns are doing this now, however to keep the public from asking questions or making comments is not true democracy.

    I hope Mr.Gahan will allow public input at the workshops in the future. He has an opportunity to be true leader on the council now, hopefully he will seize it. I am encouraged by some of his recent actions on the council by asking Garner to explain his proposals more thoroughly and produce the facts, rather than the rubberstamp behavior of CM Blevins for example.

    Now is the time for the council and public to hear the facts regarding Scribner Place and the answer to one simple question : Where is the Private investment in Scribner Place the Mayor claims he has in the works?

    I for one do not wish to have property taxes pledged to fund just a YMCA.

    Should be an interesting workshop.

    By Blogger Tim Deatrick, at 9:36 PM, June 01, 2005  

  • This would be a good time for someone to explain exactly how it is that property taxes are being used to "fund just a YMCA."

    By Blogger The New Albanian, at 9:47 PM, June 01, 2005  

  • Laura,

    Apparently, you didn't read what I wrote.

    I said:
    While I don't disagree that the need for public input should probably be addressed at some point...

    In disagreement you replied:
    ...why not hold more OPEN public meetings too?

    I said:
    I have no idea what they'll decide to discuss. I suppose it depends on what they consider to be important or have specific questions about.

    You, accusingly, said:
    What "other issues"?

    I'm not sure why you're trying to argue with me on points about which we seem to agree.

    The alternative to an open door meeting is a closed-door meeting. Obviously, an open door meeting with public oversight is more transparent.

    I actually agree with Tim on this one- open door work sessions are a good idea. All I'm suggesting is that a meeting for public input should occur separately from a council work session. Otherwise, time constraints limit both and less is accomplished.

    I say thanks for information and you respond, "Why bluegill, you suddenly sound much more diplomatic than usual." Who's the vicious one again?

    Your opening sentence says "This Blog is here for folks to discuss City issues and ask questions or make comments regarding the state of affairs within New Albany's political administration, decision making processes, and the future of our town. "

    Your challenge for the evening is to find one person on this blog who has asked more legitimate questions than I have. One comment alone contained eight and it's just one of many. Unlike most others, I've also taken the time to respectfully answer every question that's been asked of me even though most of my questions have been ignored.

    What exactly is undiplomatic about that?

    By Blogger bluegill, at 10:32 PM, June 01, 2005  

  • The Council has every right to have a work-session meeting without public comment. City Council 5-minute public comments are not the only to communicate with your council members.

    It amazes me how many people in the blogsphere "freak out" about not knowing the facts when the facts are so easily obtained by picking up the phone and/or paying attention.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:20 PM, June 01, 2005  

  • What ever happened to good old fashioned
    democracy in New Albany? Of the people,
    by the people and for the people?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:28 PM, June 01, 2005  

  • First of all...who's "freaking out"? We all know how to talk with our council-people, and I'd bet most do. Trust me, people ARE paying attention.
    bluegill...how can you get "visciuos" out of anything I said? But then to assert how you have taken your time to "respectfully" respond to questions, is absolutely absurd.
    You have been less than respectful on many occassions.
    I guess what you're saying is we should just be glad it's an open-door meeting and count our blessings on that one 'eh?

    By Blogger East Ender, at 2:56 AM, June 02, 2005  

  • Laura,
    Show me one question that's been asked of me directly that I haven't responded to respectfully. I'm sure you'll be able to point out multiple examples to justify your assertion of absurdity. All I'm asking for is one.

    I said nothing of counting any blessings. I said an open door meeting is better than a closed-door one and is a step in the right direction.

    Your double standard is amazing. Can you please explain how you making a smart aleck remark in response to someone thanking you is repsectful?

    Have you found anyone who's asked more legitimate questions than I yet?

    By Blogger bluegill, at 7:48 AM, June 02, 2005  

  • Laura, I believe your use of the word "vicious" against Bluegill is a violation of your own Blog rule with respect to constructive posts.

    Unless, of course, you meant to say "viscous," which means "having relatively high resistance to flow; viscid; sticky."

    I imagine Bluegill's questions might seem viscous to some, but they're hardly vicious.

    By Blogger The New Albanian, at 9:12 AM, June 02, 2005  

  • Today at NA Confidential: Spring Street developer praises Scribner Place, and the proper role of prayer in public meetings is examined by the Courier-Journal.

    C-J on Spring Street development, prayer in local government

    By Blogger The New Albanian, at 10:36 AM, June 02, 2005  

  • In my opinion, implying that another person's point of view might be "laughable" is certainly "rude" AND "outright out of line." Therefore, according to the description of what is allowed and not allowed on this blog, the post by east ender including that suggestion should also be deleted.

    Apparently the blog administrator disagrees with my opinion of her comment (or she believes that she is not required to follow her own guidelines). Which, illustrates the inherent vice in the guidelines for the blog--it's all according to one person's opinion.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:41 AM, June 02, 2005  

  • First, I did NOT call bluegill vicious. He suggested I was being vicious.
    Secondly, I don't accept "challenges".
    Third...and this is the last "out" I'm giving...keep the comments productive and about city business, not personal, because we are really trying to accomplish something here.
    Finally, nobody's laughing. This is a very scary place we find ourselves in. New Albany has held too many secrets for far too long. I am looking forward to tonight's meeting for some answers.

    By Blogger East Ender, at 5:02 PM, June 02, 2005  

  • "For Bluegill, I have some remarks for you, but I will have to save that for later when I have more time, as your comments were especially vicious."

    By Blogger bluegill, at 5:08 PM, June 02, 2005  

  • Laura, do you have any intention of being fair with respect to Bluegill's perfectly legitimate questions? So far, you've dodged and parried each one, acting as though they're personal affronts.

    By Blogger The New Albanian, at 5:26 PM, June 02, 2005  

  • These are not legitimate questions regarding city business. This is a game of personality tests.
    Wrong blog.

    By Blogger East Ender, at 5:59 PM, June 02, 2005  

  • Which of my questions weren't related to city business?

    By Blogger bluegill, at 6:08 PM, June 02, 2005  

  • Many cities have workshops. Bloomington -Kokomo-Evansville--It is important that the public be informed-----more important that the council be informed---in the past they have not been informed about issues---this is a good idea.

    By Blogger knighttrain, at 8:26 PM, June 02, 2005  

  • I won't be at the meeting, but will someone please post what happened and who said what?

    By Blogger New Alb Annie, at 8:40 PM, June 02, 2005  

  • There will be a post tomorrow regarding the closed- uh...public city council workshop concerning the YMCA scribner Place Project.

    By Blogger East Ender, at 1:25 AM, June 03, 2005  

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