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Galveston City Council
by Jim Guidry
Friday, January 09, 2009

Galveston City Council, which has been criticized for failure to participate in meetings of the Houston-Galveston Area Council, has voted unanimously to appoint Mayor Lyda Ann Thomas to the H-GAC Board of Directors and to appoint Council Member Susan Fennewald as alternate member. Listen: RealPlayer  MP3

Fennewald, who had previously been appointed to represent the city council at the H-GAC, but did not attend meetings, nominated Thomas for the position.

"This could involve funneling the big dollars down," Fennewald said. "I think the mayor has more stature in the general outside world."

"Susan promises to sit in oversight," Thomas said. "Everything that goes on in those meetings."

Council Member Karen Mahoney suggested that all council members might want to attend H-GAC meetings.

"It's open to the public," Thomas said. "It's one Friday or another every month."

The H-GAC is a council of governments for 13 counties.  The next meeting is Tuesday, January 20 at 10 a.m.

The city council voted 2-5, with only Danny Weber and Tarris Woods in favor, to defeat a motion to rezone property at 2025 Avenue N 1/2 to facilitate conversion of a neighborhood service building to a four to six unit apartment building.

The city council voted 6-1, with Weber opposed, to waive the noise ordinance for the area of 83rd Street and Stewart Road from January 9 though January 19, at the request of FEMA.

The city council voted unanimously to defer until the first meeting in March a proposal to grant a three year agreement with the Lone Star Rally.

The city council unanimously voted to reappoint Dennis Miller and Robert Zahn to the Arts and Historic Preservation Advisory Board.

A proposed resolution authorizing distribution of proceeds from the Galveston Island Convention Center at the San Luis Hotel Occupancy Tax Surplus fund to the Galveston Park Board of Trustees for the beach renourishment project was withdrawn from the agenda and was not considered for action.

A proposal regarding reimbursement of the three percent pay cut for city employees "once the City has financially recovered" was withdrawn from the agenda.

The city council voted 6-1, with Mahoney opposed, to approve a resolution requesting that the State of Texas Department of Emergency Management amend its Hazard Mitigation Plan and its policy and guidelines to give elevation of eligible properties damaged by Hurricane Ike the same priority as acquisition and relocation of properties.

The city council voted unanimously to give City Manager Steve LeBlanc direction on two issues regarding application for funds under the Hazardous Mitigation Grant Program (Items 12 J and 12 K), but deferred action on three other proposals.

The city council deferred action on discussion of a management district, which had been requested by Woods and Council Member Linda Colbert.

All other agenda items were approved unanimously. Agenda

Colbert presented a proclamation that recognizes January 17 through January 19 as Martin Luther King, Jr. Week in the City of Galveston. Listen: RealPlayer  MP3

A streaming video recording of the city council meeting will be posted on GuidryNews.com on Saturday.




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