Wednesday, January 23, 2008

City Council Meeting - 1/23/2008

After the executive session to discuss personnel matters involving the council attorneys, the council began the meeting by nominating Joe Bonahoom as council attorney on an interim basis. However, the council did leave the door open to hire a 2nd attorney down the road. They also voted to create a bipartisan personnel committee to review future issues as well as serve as the liaison between the council and it's staff. All-in-all it was fairly uneventful given the discussion the previous two weeks.

Also of note, the council voted 5-4 to put a hold on the Fort Wayne Police Department's request for outfitting squad cars with GPS. The hold was put in place until the state legislature determines what it's going to do regarding property tax reform and how that decision will affect the city's budget.

Members voting for the hold - Smith, Didier, Shoaff, Pape, Goldner
Members voting against - Brown, Bender, Harper, Hines

I found it unfortunate that councilman Bender didn't abstain from a vote that directly involved the FWPD. I doubt his vote violated the Indiana Code's definition of conflict of interest but I think he should've abstained nonetheless...

4 comments:

dan said...

Good for Council to study their staffing. They should have their own fiscal/budget resource for many reasons, such as providing the public and the Council some options and choices besides the Administration's.

Marty Bender should by the smell test alone abstain rather than vote for his own budget. He wears two hats now. The Journal Gazette in its campaign coverage pointed this out months ago that, if elected, he would need to abstain on any Police Department Budget items.

Robert Enders said...

She supported the multimillion dollar ballpark, but wants to table $500K for GPS in squad cars?

This GPS could play a vital role in internal affairs investigations. I will give credit to Harper, Brown, and my former opponent Hines for voting the right way on this issue. Bender should have abstained.

Jeff Pruitt said...

Robert,

There is a major difference between those two items. First the HS project did not come out of the normal budget items - the TIF will finance the project (in theory). Second, we're facing a huge budget crunch now due to House Bill 1001 (the governor's property tax plan) and she thinks the FWPD might want to hang on to that money for more necessary items in case their budget gets cut...

John Good said...

Jeff - Well stated; fiscal conservatism is NOT a dirty phrase for progressives. . .