Last night’s council meeting

Here are my notes from last night’s meetings:

-At the beginning of this month, council unanimously elected me as its President. I take the role of leading this group very seriously, and I look forward to it. Last night was the first full meeting that I served as President.

-I kept most of the committee assignments the same as last term, except that Bob Adaska and John Pribonic switched chairmanships. John is now chair of Planning Committee, and Bob chairs Public Improvements. Matt Riehl is Vice President of Council, and Jim Costello is Pro Tem.

-We debated the mechanics of how and when to approve a settlement regarding the Dollar General store at the corner of Stow Road and Fishcreek Road. As you may remember, dozens of residents were incensed last year when a proposal was made to develop that parcel for a Dollar General store. But the law was clear that council had no choice but to approve it. Council ignored that advice and rejected it. The city was promptly sued.

Our law director has now negotiated a settlement, whereby the city will approve the development, but Dollar General will split off an undeveloped parcel and rezone it to residential. The mayor and law director (and most of council) wanted to approve this settlement last night — in an empty room, and on the same night that the public first got notice of it. Given the amount of community interest in this topic, I urged council to give the public adequate notice before ramming it through. A procedural vote to “ram it through” failed, so it will appear on the Jan. 28 agenda.

-Council will meet next on Jan. 28.