Ypsilanti City Council

Some Ypsilanti City Council members aren't happy with City Manager Ralph Lange's decision not to identify the two finalists to be the city's next Chief of Police. 

The finalists will appear at a public forum one week from tonight, but Lange has opted not to identify them.  

WEMU news has obtained emails between several council members and the City Manager's office. 

Council members express concerns over the names not being released, as well as confusion over plans to have three finalists to bring before the public rather than two. 

Ypsi Heritage Festival asks City to Cap Fees

Dec 4, 2013
Bob Eccles

The Ypsilanti Heritage Festival made a plea to City Council Tuesday night to put a cap on the special event fees the city charges it. 

David Nickerson is Chair of the Ypsilanti Heritage Festival Board of Trustees.  He told council those fees represent 18 percent of festival expenses.

Nickerson requested that the city cap fees charged the festival at between $18,000 and $20,000.  Nickerson estimates next year's fees at between $25,000 and $28,000 otherwise. 

Mayor Paul Schreiber said he'd like to see the city make a contribution to the festival as a sponsor rather than just cap fees.

Council member Daniel Vogt said the city can't afford to subisidise the Heritage Festival unless the city can break even, perhaps by helping the festival find other areas in which to make cuts.

City staff will study the issue and come back to council with a recommendation at a later date.

Bob Eccles

Ypsilanti property owners would have 24 hours instead of 48 to clear snow from their sidewalks under an ordinance approved on first reading Tuesday night by city council. 

City Planner Teresa Gillotti says with Ypsilanti trying to be a walkable city, snow on sidewalks can be a problem.

Gillotti says she checked with a number of surrounding communities, and found that most give property owners 12 to 24 hours to clear snow. 

The ordinance approved by city council also calls for giving violators one warning per season, rather than one warning each time there’s an inch or more of snow, as the law is currently written.

The ordinance is expected back for a second reading an final approval at council's next meeting.


Ypsilanti Mayor Paul Schreiber hasn't said whether he'll run for re-election in 2014, but if he does, he'll face a challenge from Amanda Edmonds. 

The Growing Hope Executive Director is also vice-chair of the Ypsilanti Downtown Development Authority. She's vice-chair of the Washtenaw Food Policy Council, and was appointed by the Governor to a similar organization at the state level.

The 36 year-old is running as a Democrat.

Work on a proposed Washtenaw County recreation facility on Ypsilanti's Water Street property is rolling along. WEMU's Bob Eccles has the story. 


The Ypsilanti Planning Commission last night approved the city’s revised master plan.  WEMU’s Bob Eccles has the story.


TheRide / Ann Arbor Transportation Authority

The Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority is a step closer to adding another member community.  As WEMU's Andrew Cluley reports, the AAATA Board last night voted unanimously to approve Ypsilanti Township's request to join the authority.

Bob Eccles

As marchers descend on Washington, D.C. this weekend to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the historic civil rights march, Ypsilanti Mayor Pro Tem Lois Richardson is among them.

WEMU's Bob Eccles has the story.

Ypsilanti City Council has voted unanimously to have the city Assessor create a tax roll for the city-wide Streetlight Special Assessment District, and to file the roll for public examination. 

The cost of replacing streetlights with more efficient LEDs will be covered by the $58 every parcel of city land would pay each year for two years.  That's a big change from the original proposal, which had residents paying for the replacement and operation of the lights for the next 18-years. 

Bob Eccles

Ypsilanti City Council Tuesday night adopted a resolution seeking the repeal of Michigan's "Stand Your Ground" law.  WEMU's Bob Eccles has the story.

“Caveman Chuck” Coker / Foter.com / CC BY-ND

Ypsilanti City Council has voted to limit the number of medical marijuana licenses it accepts or renews in a given year. The second and final reading of an ordinance to that effect was approved Tuesday night.

Residents voiced their objections to the Ypsilanti's plan to charge land owners a fee to replace the some of the city's street lights with new LED models at Tuesday night's city council meeting.

Under the proposal, each parcel of land was to be charged a $98 fee for the first year, with the fee steadily declining over the following years to around $70 by 2031.  AnnArbor.com says council amended the proposal so that residents would not have to pay to power the streetlights during that period, and instead would pay about $58 a year for just two years.

The most commonly-voiced objections to the plan included its cost, the perceived value attained from the switch, and having to pay an additional fee for something that has previously been payed for by property taxes.

Ypsilanti City Manager Ralph Lange says the city has worked hard to make the project as affordable as possible. 

The cost over converting older, less efficient streetlights to LED's over the 2013-14 and 2014-15 fiscal years is estimated at over $555,000.   Converting the lights is expected to save the city over $100,000 a year.

Public discussion about the street lights will continue at the at the next council meeting, scheduled for August 20.

“Caveman Chuck” Coker / Foter.com / CC BY-ND

In the City of Ypsilanti, there are currently six medical marijuana dispensaries and one grow-operation. As WEMU's Bob Eccles reports, City Council is moving forward with a plan to officially limit the number of these kinds of facilities.


“Caveman Chuck” Coker / Foter.com / CC BY-ND

It's an issue that has been before Ypsilanti City Council, and tonight, it appears on the agenda once again. As WEMU's Bob Eccles reports, the issue of potentially limiting medical marijuana facilities in Ypsilanti is back on the council table.

Ypsilanti City Council last night took another step toward creation of a special assessment district to help pay for street light replacement. WEMU's Bob Eccles was there.

Bob Eccles

  The City of Ypsilanti is moving towards establishing a city-wide special assessment district to help pay for modernizing its older streetlights.

As WEMU's Bob Eccles reports, city council tonight is expected to take the next step in the process.

Ypsilanti On Verge Of Joining AATA

Jun 19, 2013

The city of Ypsilanti is on the verge of becoming a member of the Ann Arbor Transportation Authortiy.  WEMU's Bob Eccles has the story.

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Despite warnings from the City Manager that it amounted to negotiating Ypsilanti fire fighters' contract in public, city council Tuesday night heard a presentation on why fire fighters don't like the idea of a hybrid police and fire department.  WEMU's Bob Eccles has the story.

An Ypsilanti City Council member is applauding the state legislature for considering a measure that would allow local governments to restrict the hours during which consumer fireworks can be used. 

cityofypsilanti.com

It looks as though Ypsilanti City Council will go ahead and allow the city's firefighters union to make a presentation on why it believes a hybrid police and fire model is wrong for Ypsilanti. 

City Manager Ralph Lange has recommended cross-training police to also respond to fires as a way to make the best use of city employees. 

“Caveman Chuck” Coker / Foter.com / CC BY-ND

There are several items on the Ypsilanti City Council agenda tonight. AS WEMU's Bob Eccles explains, among the more interesting is consideration of a moratorium on licenses for new medical marijuana dispensaries.

Make sure to catch "Morning Edition"  with WEMU's David Fair on Wednesday for a full wrap-up of this evenings Ypsilanti City Council meeting.

Ypsilanti City Council has approved a purchase agreement for a portion of the Water Street Property. As WEMU's Bob Eccles reports, the action will result in a new, Family Dollar Store.

Ypsilanti City Council has approved a purchase agreement for a Family Dollar store to be built on the northeast corner of the Water Street re-development area.

The approval came after the developer agreed to some changes to make the store fit better with the city’s vision for the property, including moving the store to the northwest corner of the point-eight-five acre parcel.

The city is selling the parcel for $210,000. 

Ypsilanti city council Tuesday night approved a contract with the city's police officers union.  The approval followed a tie vote earlier in the meeting that rejected the contract.

Council members Brian Robb, Susan Moeller and Pete Murdock had voted "no" on the contract.  Moeller wasn't happy that the contract didn't include raises.  Robb wanted pension costs for Police Officers Association members capped, similar to the city's contract with the Command Officers Association.  Council member Daniel Vogt was not present at the meeting.

The City of Ypsilanti

Ypsilanti's city council got an update on the Family Dollar store proposal for the Water Street development area Tuesday night.   Hear more from WEMU's Bob Eccles.

In other action Tuesday night, Ypsilanti's city council voted to become of member of the Ann Arbor Transportation Authority.  

Also, with only six councilmembers present, approval of a new contract with the Ypsilanti Police Officers Associaton failed on a 3-3 vote.

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