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Flint, MI– During the special meeting on Aug. 10, the Flint City Council voted to approve an amendment to the city’s annual action plan, accept grant funding to be used for public safety, submit objections to a proposed asphalt plant, and approve two ordinances for first reading.
They also voted to approve more than 20 contract extensions for various services including water pollution control, electrical, forestry, and equipment leases.
The council voted to postpone ordinances related to drag racing, loitering, animal cruelty, and landlord evictions to the next Legislative Committee Meeting for further tweaking. Council President Kate Fields said she agreed with looking over the ordinances one last time, but hoped all of the tweaking would be completed in this next committee meeting so they can be approved.
They also postponed adoption of the Support Operations Plan and the appointment of an Emergency Management Coordinator, to the next Governmental Operations Committee meeting to get more details on the plan. A resolution for a budget amendment related to waste service contracts was also on the council agenda, but the council voted to postpone it to the next Finance Committee meeting.
At the request of the administration, the council also postponed the approval of the James P. Cole Brownfield Redevelopment Plan to the next regular city council meeting in two weeks.
Although the meeting lasted close to eight hours, the council took pride in how well they got along throughout it, and worked together on various agenda items.
Here is what the council decided upon:
Approved an amended action plan allocating millions to community organizations
The council voted to approve submitting an amended annual action plan to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), which would allow the city to receive more than $5 million.
According to the resolution, the City of Flint anticipates it will receive Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funds in the amount of $2,830,392, from the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG-CV). The city also anticipates it will receive $2,441,943 from the Emergency Solutions Grant (ESG-CV). With both grants, that comes to a total of $5,272,335.
In order to receive this funding, the City had to develop an amendment to the annual action plan outlining how the funds would be allocated. Details about which organizations were allocated money can be found on page 14 of the council agenda here.
The City of Flint Grand Traverse Greenway was initially allocated $141,162. After discussion about options for the funding, the council voted to divide that money four ways, giving $40,000 to the Brennan Community Center, $40,000 to Hasselbring Senior Center, $40,000 to the Latinx Technology and Community Center for a playground, and the remaining $21,062 to Asbury United Methodist Church for their youth activities.
Accepted a Financially Distressed Cities grant
The council unanimously voted to accept a $183,505 grant to purchase police camera equipment for the Flint Police Department.
The funds are part of a Financially Distressed Cities, Villages, and Townships grant program through the State of Michigan Department of Treasury. Flint was one of 16 municipalities to be awarded funding through the program this year, according to a press release from the state.
According to the grant agreement, $107,880 is to be used for police body cameras. The remaining $75,625 is budgeted for surveillance cameras, and their installation.
Chief Resilience Officer Lottie Ferguson said this would fund 24 cameras.
Approved sending objections to EGLE about a potential asphalt plant
The council unanimously voted to send objections from the city administration, as well as the council and public speakers, to the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy related to the installation and operation of a new hot mix asphalt plant in Genesee Township, right across Flint’s city limits.
Ajax Materials Corporation sent an application to EGLE for a permit to install and operate this plant at 5088 Energy Drive.
The law requires EGLE to allow the public to comment on this application, and comments may be made until Aug. 16.
The administration brought forth a resolution objecting to the plant to “prevent neighborhoods and residents and other businesses from being negatively impacted,” by the plant. The resolution cites toxic air pollutants, possible health issues, and the potential to decrease property values with the construction of this plant.
The council unanimously voted to approve submitting the administration’s objections, with an amendment to include “the comments the city council has received as well as any comments the council itself makes,” on the matter.
Approved two ordinances related to job descriptions for first reading
The council voted to approve the first reading of two ordinances related to the job descriptions of the Deputy Director of Community and Economic Development, and the Deputy Director of Public Works.
Before the ordinances are enacted, they will have to go through second reading and a public hearing.
The ordinances amend the ‘Personnel Code’ chapter of the Code of the City of Flint by repealing the current job descriptions and qualifications for those two positions, which can be found on page 455 on the council agenda here.
There was no discussion on these ordinances.