Sunday, March 16, 2014

Village Hall On The Move

Tuesday night, the commission approved an additional $9,000 per year to rent the ground floor of the building at 1666 JFK Causeway to use as a meeting space, rather than continue at the school for the commission meetings and P&Z.   

Except it was not $9,000.  It is a cool $49,000 per year.  The Village Manager inadvertently double counted a $40,000 estimated savings on the rent and presented the items as having a net cost change of $9,000 more per year.   

Since the village uses the space at the school about 6 hours per month and then about 4 hours per month for the P&Z, this comes out to about $400 per hour additional to have a slightly more convenient place to meet. 

The main reasons given for moving where that the chairs were too hard in the school auditorium (they are) and that residents don't attend because it's for some reason more difficult to go to the school (doubtful).  

The option of spending say $3,000 and donating improved seating to the school and actually asking the residents why they don't come were not considered.  

Since the resolution was reached with the oral assurance that it was $9,000, even though the written support said $49,000 savings, there is a question if the resolution is legal.  

There's a lot could be done with $49,000 - Pay the PAL finally, or use it to fund a parking study for Harbor Island, or develop a comprehensive PR strategy to attract residents to the boards and meetings, or to fund the reserve.  

But instead it will be spent on making the commissioners slightly more comfortable six hours a month.  Comfort costs.  

Kevin Vericker
March 16, 2014

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