Central City Council Meeting
By David Josselyn
Council met with Staff for a work session prior to the regular meeting. The topics of discussion were the Historic Residential Grant program and a discussion with the Central City Parkway bondholders. The City obtained a $21,000 grant for historic structures aimed at preservation. The grant has options that can be applied to rock walls, paint, roof repair, window repair, siding, or structural rehabilitation. Council discussed what the priority would be using a grant of $21,000 and rock walls seemed to be a slightly higher priority than paint.
William Porter, representing the Central City Parkway bondholders, addressed Council regarding how the bondholders, the Business Improvement District, and the City can work together to establish an economic future that can start repaying the bonds for the Parkway.
Regular Council Meeting
Mayor Fey convened the regular meeting at 7:10 pm on Tuesday, February 16, 2021, in City Hall Council Chambers. Council members Jeff Aiken, Jackie Johnson, Judy Laratta, Kara Tinucci, and Mayor Jeremy Fey were present.
Mayor Fey led the Pledge of Allegiance and then asked for any amendments or additions to the evening’s agenda. No changes were made to the agenda.
Mayor Fey asked if there were any conflicts of interest for any member of the council. There were no conflicts expressed.
The Mayor called for a motion to approve the consent agenda which consisted of the minutes from the February 2 meeting, regular bill lists through February 2, and Resolution 21-07 which would ratify the appointments to the Board of Directors of the Belvidere Foundation. The appointments to the foundation were made at the February 2 meeting and this Resolution is memorializing the appointments for posterity. Alderwoman Laratta moved to approve the Consent Agenda and was seconded by Alderwoman Johnson. The motion passed unanimously.
Mayor Fey opened the floor to the public for anyone who wished to speak to a topic on that night’s agenda. No one chose to address council.
No old business was on the docket.
Council considered action on one Resolution.
Cost Savings on Elevator/ Inspections
Director Rears introduced Resolution 21-08 which would amend the Comprehensive Fee Schedule to reflect a new conveyance fee schedule in conjunction with inspection firm Charles Abbott Associates. The fees are increasing, but the number of inspections is reducing resulting in a cost savings for the City.
Alderwoman Laratta moved to approve Resolution 21-08 and was seconded by Alderman Aiken. The Resolution passed unanimously.
Staff Reports and Council Comments
Director Rears reported that an RFP has been created for a pocket park next to the Belvidere Theatre. The concept is to create a place for communing on the south side of the building which includes benches and flower gardens. The proposal is available for the public on the City’s website. From the main page, navigate to News and Notices and select RFPs and RFBs. The Belvidere Pocket Park Conceptual Plan is near the end of the list.
Alderwoman Laratta commented that she will receive her second vaccination next week and is looking forward to being at the next Council Meeting in person.
Alderman Aiken commented he is appreciative of Bill (William Porter) being at the meeting tonight.
Alderwoman Johnson commented that at the GAA (Gilpin Ambulance Authority) meeting, they are getting vaccines out as fast as they come in and to please be patient if you are waiting for your turn. “Kudos to Bonnie (Albrecht – Director of Public Health) for all the hard work she’s doing.”
Sheriff Armstrong updated that there are three new COVID cases this week (“not bad at all”) and a lot of people have received the vaccine; they are receiving about 100 doses per week. However, shipments to Colorado are being delayed.
Mayor Fey commented that is “sure was nice to walk into the casinos and see the dealers back to work” and to “walk into JKQ (BBQ).”
Mayor Fey opened the floor to the public for anyone who wished to speak to the council on any items not on the agenda.
Executive Director of the Business Improvement District Joe Behm addressed the Council regarding the reduction in device fees in 2020. “The casinos are very grateful for the help” from the City which “allowed them to continually employ many people.” Behm will be putting together a presentation to show how impactful the City’s help has been.
Mark your calendars
Mayor Fey adjourned the regular meeting at 7:53 pm. The next regular Council Meeting will be Tuesday, March 2.