Thursday, September 28, 2006

Busy Week Starts Tonight

The Planning Board will hold a special meeting tonight (Sept. 28, 2006)to memorialize two resolutions passed at its Sept. 21 meeting.

Tonight’s meeting is 7 p.m. in City Hall Library.

The resolutions are one recommending that the City Council adopt the East Third/Richmond redevelopment plan and one that amends the land use ordinance to make a senior center a permitted use in both the central business district and mixed use zones.

The East Third/Richmond plan calls for multi-family, high-density residential redevelopment with a small commercial portion on adjacent Cottage Place. The City Council held an emergency meeting without legal notice on Saturday to approve a redevelopment study and the plan. Initially, the council had been asked on Sept. 20 to approve both the plan and the study. But after a caucus behind closed doors, the council declined to act on either one, deferring action until Saturday.

Residents have questioned the need for such haste as well as how the Planning Board came to have the finished plan in hand at a Sept. 7 meeting to vote on the study alone. The Saturday meeting also fell on Rosh Hashanah, which some considered disrespectful

The senior center decision came Sept. 21 after about 50 seniors and mayoral mentor Assemblyman Jerry Green showed up, with the proposed developer and his team in tow. The only issue on the agenda was making a senior center a permitted use in the CBD and MU zones, but the discussion and comments drifted into site plan issues.

Next week, the council will change its schedule to meet on Tuesday (Oct. 3, 2006) and and Thursday (Oct. 5, 2006), because Yom Kippur falls on Monday. The council has scheduled its first budget meeting on Wednesday, which is also the date of the regular Board of Adjustment meeting. Thursday’s council meeting will also clash with the regular Planning Board meeting.

--Bernice Paglia


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