In a very long and storm interrupted meeting, the city council passed the 2011-2012 budget, including funding for the controversial District 95 summer reading and math program. The budget passed on a 4-3 vote, with Mayor Cole and Councilpeople Haynes, Neill and McDaniel voting for it and Wissmann, Fritzler and Pohlman against. Councilman Haynes attempted to include $30,000 plus in funding for Attucks Community Services, but had no luck.
Councilmans Haynes' vote is a change from his position during the recent election, when all four candidates for mayor spoke against the proposed $150,000 summer reading program. The continued funding of the I CAN READ program, which he had pushed for, may have influenced his changed vote.
Also, the grand opening of the new Public Safety Center may be postponed as the storm caused significant damage to the roof. Not sure how much, but the contractor is over there right now evaluating the situation.
In the Liquor Control Commission meeting earlier in the evening, Gatsbys appealed a $1000 fine and costs stemming from a citation for having someone under 19 in the bar last September. The Commission voted to accept the appeal and changed the punishment to a letter of reprimand and hearing costs of about $120. I was bemused by the length of time it took for the whole process. The original citation was given in September, the first hearing (which a representative from Gatsby's missed, thinking the time was at 4:30 rather than 4 p.m.) was in March and the appeal was granted in April. Not exactly swift justice.