Wednesday, August 15, 2012
COUNCIL NOTES CONT.
Of the other three items that failed to make it out of the starting gate two were anticipated. .
One was the monthly communication from the Mayor appointing Cecil H. Sanders Jr., Alex Toliver, Darcella Sessomes as “members” of the PMUA and Harold Mitchell the incumbent President as an alternate.
There is no reason to reiterate why Council President Mapp justifiably refuses to place this previously rejected slate on the Agenda.
The other recommendation was for the nomination of Hattie M. Williams and Eric Graham to the Library Board of Trustees.
Councilor Storch objected to them since the Council had not been able to interview these two to determine their position on the city’s funding of the Library. The fear that they would be advocates of the Mayor’s plan for minimal City allocations seemed valid in view of the documented contribution to Rev. Brown’s campaign by Williams using HUD funds. This supposed illegal action was remedied by replacement of the money.
There was a proposed Ordinance creating a three person Alcohol Beverage Commission to replace the Council’s role as this Board which approves of the issuances of the annual licenses.
The Council has not yet renewed the licenses for three establishments pending review of reported repeated infractions and other police incidents. Howeve, the Police Department had not recommended non renewal and as the Acting Corporation Counsel stated the State ABC would not uphold the Council’s action on appeal.
One of the problems is that the Council only functions in its ABC role at the annual license renewal time. The Commission would meet monthly and get all concurrent reports. Thus it would be in a better position to act on problem venues.
When it was suggested that the Council meet monthly or bi-monthly to negate that complaint one of the members objected saying that the extra meetings would be an imposition on its personal time.
Councilor Williams strongly objected to that attitude. She noted that she attended all Council and sub-committee meetings as part of the obligation inherent in the position as Councilor. (Bravo). She also noted that the Council has cut its burden from 4 meetings a month to 2.
The present majority of the Council does not appear willing to surrender more of its authority to the Mayor considering the state of existent appointments to all the other various Boards, Authorities and Commissions.
It appears s that this Council will try to work something out so that it still has control over the licenses.
Once again one of the major flaws in the Charter has reared its ugly head; the fact that the Corporation Counsel a Mayor’s appointee, also acts in a legal capacity for the Council.