[MissoulaGov] Committee Update 10-17-07

d jhwygirl at hotmail.com
Thu Oct 18 17:20:26 MDT 2007

I, too, agree - but I wonder if Nugent has weighed in on the listserve?

It seems to me that the listserve is public in an of itself - no one is excluded, right?

And as Jim said - as long as the contents are available to everyone, nothing should be wrong or in violation of any law.

From: robert at newwest.net
Date: Thu, 18 Oct 2007 11:14:53 -0600
To: jmcgrath at missoulahousing.org
CC: bjaffe at ci.missoula.mt.us; missoulagov at cmslists.com
Subject: Re: [MissoulaGov] Committee Update 10-17-07

Hi Bob,I agree with Jim. Bob, please don't allow enmity over partisan squabbles sully this excellent forum. And I know you don't think these emails are private. Any public emails - ANY - are public, not private, including all the back-and-forth on this forum. That is as it should be. Your committee updates are a valuable service to the Missoula community. I, for one, read them avidly and appreciate for providing the grist for these informative and thoughtful online discussions. You're a stand-up guy for delivering your frank assessments of the goings-on. So... thanks. Keep it up. Don't hold back. All the best,Bob StruckmanOn Oct 18, 2007, at 10:49 AM, Jim McGrath wrote: Bob, Re: “In PAZ things started to get interesting. We are looking at an annexation, zoning, and subdivision for a 14 unit project on 3.4 acres on the corner of 7th and Tower. That is probably all I can say without running afoul of open meeting law and right to know laws so I will speak generally about growth in the Orchard Homes area instead.”Huh?The open meeting law requires that any debate on public matters be in open meetings. It does not forbid councilmembers from conveying information to the public. I assume everything you know about the proposal was presented in a public forum (e.g. PAZ meeting, which has minutes, or PAZ packet, which is available for public review.) What it forbids is PRIVATE discussion between interested parties (e.g. secret meetings with the developer). Obviously, if you were to RECEIVE any comment, information, or discussion in response to your blog, you would need to share it with all councilmembers and the public.Please do not restrain yourself from informing us about matters of public interest before public committees in a false sense of propriety. From: missoulagov-bounces at cmslists.com [mailto:missoulagov-bounces at cmslists.com] On Behalf Of Bob Jaffe
Sent: Thursday, October 18, 2007 8:35 AM
To: missoulagov at cmslists.com
Subject: [MissoulaGov] Committee Update 10-17-07 Greetings,This morning we started with the long absent Economic Development subcommittee.At some point I was appointed to chair this subcommittee and have been terribly remiss in pulling together a meeting. I organized this one around a presentation of the new Tourism Business Improvement District. The TBID is based on a new authorization from the legislature. It allows the hotels in the community to charge a per room tax with 100% of the revenue going to the local TBID to expend on promoting tourism. Billings is ahead of us and just put theirs in place. Hopefully we will have ours ready by the end of the year. The presentation was made by Barb Nielan of the convention and visitors bureau and Mary Muse from the Adams center at the University. We learned that tourism in Missoula generates $283 million which accounts for $3 million in bed taxes. The state is generous enough to return $150,000 of that to our local community for the Missoula CVB to spend to promote tourism here. The new proposal calls for a 75 cent tax per occupied room night. We have about 3000 rooms in Missoula. They average 60% occupancy. So that ends up being about $500,000 per year. I’m looking for suggestions for future Economic Development Subcommittee topics. We hear some people complain a lot about Missoula not being a business friendly city. I was thinking that maybe we could provide a forum for people to come down and bitch about what the city does to inhibit economic growth (providing that they do it in a constructive way). I would like to see if we could identify any real issues and identify policy changes we could work on to resolve them. In Public Safety we discussed Transient problems downtown again. Don wanted to take one more stab at getting support for a no panhandling zone downtown. Officer Dick Lewis reiterated what chief Wickman told us a few weeks ago. Fines and arrest are a lousy deterrent for destitute street people. We don’t want to take up precious jail space with them and there is nowhere else to send them. Banning the activity in a certain area may just drive them to other areas where they are harder to keep an eye on. Basically he was saying that the preference of the police department and the administration is to set up a task force of the various stake holders and work on some solutions. We really need some services and places for people to go who are not sober enough for the Pov. This process has some momentum behind it and sounds like it will move forward. In conservation we discussed a proposal to apply for a grant from the Coca Cola company for recycling bins to place on Higgins Avenue. We are looking at getting 25 of them. The problem is how to pay to get them emptied. We currently contract with Allied Waste to empty the other street trash pails. We need to check with them to see what they will charge. Missoula Valley Recycle offered to do it for $5/ can /pickup. If we do it each week that would be $260/year/can. We were thinking maybe we could get businesses to sponsor a can and maybe get some advertising rights on it. We voted to support the effort and the Greenhouse Gas committee is looking into the details.In PAZ things started to get interesting. We are looking at an annexation, zoning, and subdivision for a 14 unit project on 3.4 acres on the corner of 7th and Tower. That is probably all I can say without running afoul of open meeting law and right to know laws so I will speak generally about growth in the Orchard Homes area instead.The area has important local agricultural assets. But it is an obvious place for city growth.The comprehensive plan has conflicting advice for the area. The map shows two per acre maximum density but the plan calls for fringe areas developing to urban densities when infrastructure becomes available.The neighborhood is finally organizing itself and trying to initiate a planning effort.OPG is also initiating an urban fringe planning effort.My sense is that the neighborhood has not been that willing to come to terms with the fact that growth is coming. The planning processes of the past have ended up just calling for things to pretty much stay as they are. I’m hoping that since the bulldozers are in the neighborhood people will be willing to engage in a planning process that acknowledges present day realities and needs for growth. Planned growth will be better than eating up the whole area three acres at a time.I would like to see that planning process get ahead of the subdivisions. In public works we considered an extension of the sewer service boundary out at the Wye. The boundary currently runs along Waldo lane which is to the west of 93 just past the Wye. There is a property owner adjacent to the line who wants us to extend the boundary around his piece. A number of council members expressed concern with expanding the sewer service to unzoned land even further away from town with no clear plan as to what was going to happen out there. The motion failed with only Jack and I think one other person supporting it. This was a bit of a surprise. I went into the discussion expecting to vote for it but was swayed by the debate. There was definitely a more conservative attitude in the room and a sentiment that we want to tighten up our ship on what we are doing about growth. Next we had a working session on Hillview Way again. We spent most of the time talking about the SID deferral program. The discussion moved in a new direction with a request to change the current proposal where the large land owners have to pay when they sell or subdivide their property, to one where the fee would be applied to new units when they are built. It is all pretty much the same thing but the timing on when the deferral gets paid is different. The hope was that this will make it more palatable to the property owners since the payments will be directly and proportionally tied to development rather than just sale of the land. We’ll see. I think we have a lot more work to do before this thing is ready to go to a vote. Thanks for your interest, Bob JaffeMissoula City Council, Ward 3bjaffe at ci.missoula.mt.us406-728-1052 _______________________________________________Subscribe at Missoulagov.org List Serve hosting provided by www.CedarMountainSoftware.com.
Robert StruckmanNewWest.Net(406) 829-1725robert at newwest.net

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