City Council Approves Tourism Improvement District Budget and Audit — Unanimously

By Robert Haugh

The City Council meeting last night was kinda boring. No one was admonished. No one resigned. No one sued the 49ers and won $180 million.

Central Park

The City Council held a study session on the master plan. The Parks and Recreation staff has done a lot of outreach and research to understand what the public thinks we need in Central Park.

Here are some  interesting things we learned last night.

  • There are a lot of ideas that will cost a lot of money.
  • Residents like water features.
  • The lake is popular, even though the geese keep the staff busy with daily power washing.
  • Kiely Boulevard is considered the “front entrance” or gateway to the park.

The City Council will consider a master plan in February, 2019. There will be two new councilmembers then.

Tourism Improvement District (TID)

The City Council unanimously approved the TID budget and will continue the collection of funds using Convention Center staff since the Chamber of Commerce is out of the management picture. They handled this in previous years.

In a related item, the City Council also allocated $155,000 for TAP International to audit the TID as well as the Convention Center. TAP has done a preliminary audit of the Chamber’s handling of the Convention Center and released info that shows mismanagement and malfeasance. The final audit will be out next month. We’re expecting some more revelations about the Chamber. The TID audit may take longer. It’s interesting that that vote was unanimous. In the past, Councilwoman Patty Mahan defended the Chamber. She didn’t say anything last night.

1593 Lexington Street

The City Council unanimously overruled the Planning Commission and approved the basement conversion and a new accessory dwelling unit. The property owner had a different version of a plan in front of the council in January, 2015. Wow. That’s a long process.

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