Council to review the pot, the site of the prison | News, Sports, Jobs
ESCANABA – A number of items that have filled Escanaba City Council’s agendas in recent months will be revisited on Thursday.
The council will continue a discussion on the future of marijuana retail in the city.
Previous discussions have revolved around where retail establishments might be located. Early maps limited establishments to non-residential areas and to locations within 1,000 feet of any school, church, library, or commercial daycare center.
Council member Karen Moore, who has pushed for a much more restrictive set of rules for marijuana establishments than the rest of council, argued at the last city council meeting that the city should establish what it described as a “Dedicated area” for retail sales. As distinct from a zoning change, his plan would establish what city planners commonly call a “superimposed district”. Overlay districts establish areas where special use can take place without rezoning the underlying area or changing the rules of an existing zoning classification.
Specifically, Moore suggested the Lincoln Road Corridor as a possible area, which was consistent with one of the suggestions brought to the meeting by City Manager Patrick Jordan.
ASSESSMENT OF THE MUNICIPAL MANAGER
The board will approve the results of Jordan’s annual review at Thursday’s meeting.
Council spent more than an hour behind closed doors at its July 7 meeting to discuss the city manager’s performance. When the council reconvened in open session, council member Ron Beauchamp proposed the creation of a council to reformulate Jordan’s contact—something that had occurred when Beauchamp previously served on the council.
“I had no intention of doing this, but in light of some of the final comments that were made during the closed session, I would like to suggest that the board form a committee (of) at least two – only two – council members consider drafting a new contract for the city manager and present this document to the council for consideration,” Beauchamp said during the meeting. “I would ask to be nominated and I would recommend the mayor, but only because he is the mayor.”
The board approved the creation of the committee, with only Moore voting against the motion.
The council will hear an update from Jordan on the future redevelopment of the sites of the former Delta County Jail and Delta County Chamber of Commerce buildings. Jordan worked with three local developers interested in purchasing the properties to build a hotel, condos and expand the existing North Shore Marine Terminal and Logistics ship repair operations.
SALE OF PROPERTY
Council will reconsider a potential sale of city-owned land to Kelli Van Ginhoven, who wants to build a home on the land, located at 419 South 32nd St.
At the July 7 meeting, council discussed Van Ginhoven’s offer of $22,500 for the property, which was valued by the city’s assessor at $34,000 and privately at $36,000. Jordan was instructed to continue working with Van Ginhoven to develop an acceptable purchase price after the board found the initial offer to be too low.
The council will consider closing Ludington Street from 10th to 14th Street for Yooperfest on Saturday September 10. The event will feature live music from ten bands and alcohol and food vendors.
As part of the city’s ongoing water infrastructure projects, council will vote on whether to engage the Central Upper Peninsula Regional Planning and Development Commission (CUPPAD) to conduct a salary review under the Davis Bacon Act at a cost not exceeding $13,325. The review is required for projects funded by the State Clean Water Revolving Loan Fund and funds are available and allocated through the fund.
Council will vote whether to condemn a house at 1002 Stephenson Avenue, which has been deemed unsafe to occupy in its current condition. The city has been working with the owners and other interested parties since April 2021. In June, the city was notified that a foreclosure sale is taking place on the property and as a result, code compliance inspector Blaine DeGrave is asking that the problem be reconsidered. in August.