Detroit City Council Formal Session

Detroit City Council
Politics

Tuesday, April 9, 2024
10:00 a.m. — 2:00 p.m. EDT

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Reporting

Edited and summarized by the Detroit - MI Documenters Team

Note-taking by Damien Benson

Councilmembers approved a resolution to name the transit center at the Michigan State Fairgrounds after Jason Hargrove, a DDOT bus driver who β€œled the call on safety protocols during the COVID-19 pandemic”, and ultimately died from COVID-19.

Live reporting by Amy Senese

Councilmembers approved a resolution to name the transit center at the Michigan State Fairgrounds after DDOT bus driver Jason Hargrove. The Coleman A. Young Municipal Center will be closed, and council meetings canceled April 22-23, due to activities related to the NFL Draft.

amy k senese πŸ‰ @amysenese
Good morning, Detroit! Today at 10am, I'll be live-tweeting the Detroit City Council Formal Session for #DetDocumenters
@DetDocumenters media partners: @BridgeDet313 @chalkbeatDET @freep @media_outlier @metrotimes @michigan_public @PlanetDetroit @wdet @wxyzdetroit

07:45 AM Apr 9, 2024 CDT

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Detroit City Council meetings are in-person at 2 Woodward Ave Detroit in the Coleman A. Young Municipal Center and virtually, with options to join the meeting directly or watch on Channel 10.
detroitmi.gov/government/cit…
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For past #Detdocumenters reporting of Detroit City Council, visit the documenters' website:
documenters.org/reporting/?age…
amy k senese πŸ‰ @amysenese 4/140
Last week's City Council meeting was live-tweeted by @SherrieSoUltra
amy k senese πŸ‰ @amysenese 5/140
For all the latest on Detroit City Council, don't miss @BridgeDet313's City Council Notebook written by @PolarBarrett
bridgedetroit.com/detroit-budget…
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I also recommend the Detroit is Different podcast, "Public Comment," hosted by Khary Frazier with Malachi Barrett.
youtube.com/playlist?list=…
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As reported by documenter @kayleighrenel, the Detroit City Council approved the FY 2025 budget at 11:55 PM last night!
amy k senese πŸ‰ @amysenese 8/140
Here's more on the late-night budget approval from @freep and @DanaAfana
freep.com/story/news/loc…
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Here's the agenda for today's meeting, click on the paper clip πŸ“Ž on this HTML version to download supporting documents.
pub-detroitmi.escribemeetings.com/Meeting.aspx?I…
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That's all for now, I'll be back at 10am!
If you believe anything in the coverage today is inaccurate, please email us at documenters@outliermedia.org with "Correction Request" in the subject line.
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I'm here on the 13th floor of the Coleman A. Young Municipal Center and Council Member Mary Waters is the first to arrive. If you watching the virtual meeting, you'll see this screen:
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Council President Mary Sheffield and council members Latisha Johnson & Fred Durhal have arrived.
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Council Pro-tem James Tate has just arrived.
There is now a quorum; the clerk is calling the roll.
Waters, Sheffield, Johnson, Durhall present. Council member Santiago-Romero will not be present today.
President Sheffield is wearing a mask.
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Today's prayer is lead by Rev. Barry Randolph from Church of Messiah
freep.com/story/news/loc…
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Council member Benson has arrived.
They will go straight to a presentation, and cut off public comment right after.
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Today's presentation is by the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments or SEMCOG, that has a focus on regional planning.
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SEMCOG is non-partisan.
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They will now speak on specific initiatives they offer
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They use a lot of data and maps in their work.
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They are in the middle of working on the 2050 Regional transportation plan
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Here's a look at the funding available.
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They work on safe transportaion and safe streets.
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Funding and Grants (2023-2026)
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Southeast Michigan Healthy Climate Plan
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Climate Resiliency and Flooding Challenges
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Launching Economic Development Council
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SEMCOG University Workshops and Trainings
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Upcoming Meetings, QR code to register
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Federal and State Legislative Advocacy
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Public Education and Engagement:
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The presentation is complete; there are no questions or comments from the council.
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Member Benson is thanking the SEMCOG representatives.
Benson said that people don't realize how much data is available at the SEMCOG website.
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President Sheffield is moving to the agenda.
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Reports have been submitted to various committees, and they are moving to public comment.
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🚨 Public Comment
#1 Kary Fraiser from Detroit is Different wants to let Detroiters know about an upcoming event during the NFL Draft that will take place in Detroit. His event will take place at Marygrove Conservancy on Sun April 21st 2-6pm.
facebook.com/detroitisdiffe…
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#2. Mr. Shelton
Quoting from the Quran. Now speaking to the "billions of dollars in bonds". Residents are drowning...
"the interest is almost as much as the principle"
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#3. "Justice, justice, justice". Speaking to her personal experience of overtaxation. Now talking about Rashida Talib, asking why she won't support her in the same way she supports Hamtrammck residents. I don't want food stamps, I want my own money, "cold hard cash."
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Referencing Duggan, "I have a mind of my own"
I don't want to hear about these invisible people working for me.
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#4. First time coming for public comment.
Talking about seeing council members on their phones and devices during the meeting.
Concerned about the Police Department, etc.
Why are city officials following her in their vehicles? Going to internal affairs after this.
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Lives in a shelter, and her privacy have been violated; people are going through her things. Asking how people can believe anything they say. Speaking of corruption.
Said the council members work for us.
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#5. Taura Brown speaking to Right to Counsel. Saying it's not working based on the experience of court watching and experience with Detroit Eviction Defense.
Has a complaint against a management company.
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Telling the stories of some tenants.
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#6. Here for housing issues. Signed a lease last year on Sept. 28th. It has repair issues, and the property is not registered. Has been retaliated against and harassed. Her DTE account has been closed; she has a 2-year-old relative that she just adopted. Her rent is in escrow.
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Sheffield connected the last commenter w/ Durhal's staff.
Calloway met a family that was staying in the cold out by 8 miles and helped with some shelter.
On Saturday, she was at a laundromat and met a woman who was washing clothes. She was in the process of being evicted.
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They stopped the meet-and-greet and went to the house. It was not in great condition, and the deed was fraudulent. Calloway is saying there is a problem with Black women being evicted in the city. Every time she goes out, she runs into people going through eviction,
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#7. Another tenant is experiencing retaliation. Received an eviction notice after an inspection found there was lead contamination. After this, the landlord filed for eviction. The tenant has only been in the house for 30 days.
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The tenant worked to resolve the issue with the landlord, who did not cooperate. 36th district court would not help her. Sheffield advised the tenant to connect with staff while she's here.
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#8. Mr. Foster thanked the council for their work on the budget.
Went to the coffee hour with Member Calloway.
Happy to hear about investments in housing and noting that residents are coming to the council to report on housing issues.
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Now onto virtual comments.
#9. Transit/ disability advocate speaking about the budget process. Talking about the low-income bus fare program that may not have been funded at all.
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#10. Steven Harwing
Said the previous calling was speaking gibberish.
Regarding the low-income fare program, there are so many other important issues. Is glad the council didn't consider it.
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#11. Tahira Ahmad thanked the council for asking about resolutions on property tax justice.
Why are we paying taxes we don't owe? We are still being illegally overtaxed.
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metrotimes.com/news/detroit-c…
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Tahira Ahmad, saying the bike lanes are dangerous, doesn't see any cyclists on them.
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#12. Tim
Family has been around in the city since his grandfather's generation. Operated a pizza business downtown for 35 years. Advocated for community benefit agreements.
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Recently, I lost a contract for media services, doing press conferences. They have all the equipment; the city came out to check, but after the contract was awarded to someone else. They could do a lot more if they had support. The city needs more Black Owned media.
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#13. William Davis.
Speaking about the problem of missing black women and children. Also, manipulation of crime statistics. People may not report crime to police.
Thinks that city vehicles are getting more wear and tear leaving the city...
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Too many police officers live outside of the city.
Not many of our dollars are staying and turning over in the city. That is not happening to the extent that it can.
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#14. Betty Varner
Ditto to everything Mr. Foster said. Appreciated the council and was with them last night. First time going through the entire budget process. The council was there until midnight. Noticed there wasn't anything in there for community orgs and parks.
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Asking the council to come up with programs for community members who are taking care of parks with their own funds and time. Said make it easer, no 501c3 status just give them some easy money for their work. Saying her neighborhood needs help with some playground equipment.
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#15 Karen Winston
Wants to speak on administrative rules and procedures.
Residents need to know the process and procedures so they can reference and document.
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... finished by commenting on the overtaxation. It shouldn't happen.
#16. Virginia Park Community, saying we should have a participatory budget. Spoke about various budget priorities and also talked about homes the community was trying to purchase from the Detroit Land Bank.
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Homes should be given to the community. Appreciates the council, but doesn't feel they are managing residents' money properly.
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#17 Marguerite Maddox
Talking about women and children needing shelter.
Here's more on Marguerite from @media_outlier
outliermedia.org/marguerite-mad…
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Marguerite Maddox continued... Concerned about citizens and drivers, need to figure out a way to make it easier for the citizens...
Please help for everyone to get around
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#18
On Black media, we need it, we've been left out long enough.
On East Davidson, between Justine and Phelan, the traffic light doesn't work and needs to be changed, you can't get through.
On the issue of fireworks at 3am, it's unacceptable.
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Seniors and children need to be taken care of.
Appreciates the process, but black people in Detroit are left out of a lot of things.
Trying to get trees cut down and alley worked on.
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#19 Karen Hammer
Thanked council for budget efforts.
We need a participatory budget process, which is a future priority. Detroit needs a climate plan.
Inflation Reduction Act allows tax credits, creates jobs, saves lives, and saves the average Michigander $11,000 per year...
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Detroiters are affected by high utility bills.
Asking council to consult with the Michigan Environmental Council and Climate Action Network.
Member Coleman Young has joined.
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#20. Meeko Williams
Has a question for Protem Tate, in regards to the NFL Draft and businesses, non-profit involvement during the draft. The draft should be participatory for residents.
Asking residents to pay water bills and sign up for the lifeline plan.
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Water activists have worked hard to ensure residents' water is not cut off.
detroitmi.gov/departments/wa…
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#21. L. Williams
Woke up to homicide detectives and a crime scene unit outside of his house in District 3.
Speaking about applicants for the solar program, today was a bold reminder of why their application should be considered.
A deceased person was found on his block today.
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#22.
Talking about a proposal for a "no mow May" to encourage pollinators, other communities like Ferndale are doing it.
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Here's a piece about No Mow May published last year in @PlanetDetroit
planetdetroit.org/2023/05/what-t…
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#23 Bobbi Johnson
Speaking to various contracts on the agenda, asking why the city would spend $272,000 on a single building.
There's a whole lot of emergency demolitions, why?
We need a database to track whether these women and girls are being found.
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"Need oversight on the oversight."
#24 ADOS Detroit
and 16.2 Pilot programs, wants to know who pays for various services
how about the contaminated sites that Young believes she should look up.
Spoke to various resolutions under Budget Finance and Audit Standing
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#25. Speaking about an event on the 23rd at Source Booksellers related to the climate crisis and the environmental catastrophe we're facing. Asking council to attend.
facebook.com/sourcebooksell…
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#26 May Mayberry
Parking in downtown Detroit should be made accessible for seniors. Most of the parking in the area around the Municipal Center is too expensive.
Asking about a flag that could be flown for MLK Day and Juneteenth...
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Also, attending the Reparations Task Force, it's not helping. People need direct compensation.
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#27
Asking Siri to define incompetence. Calls in frequently with concerns and to criticize personally specific council members.
He is upset that his public comment is cut off frequently.
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#28. Cunningham
Passes out bus tickets east to west and north to south. There's a great need in the city. People are speaking against free fare or ticket assistance because they don't care to encounter or be in a community with people who need those services.
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He pays for these things out of his own pocket. He's very poor and needs his car services; he doesn't have luck with mechanics, asking for prayer.
More on Michael Cunningham:
bridgedetroit.com/meet-detroits-…
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That concludes public comment.
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Durhal asked for approval, resolution approved.
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Durhal asking for approval.
The resolution is approved.
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Requests a waiver for 16.1 and 16.2, action taken.
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Item 16.3
Calloway is a no. No discussion.
Resolution approved.
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Durhal moves for approval of line item 16.4
Resolution approved.
Durhal requests waiver. Johnson rejects, motion fails.
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Durhal asks for discussion, it has already been passed, removed from the agenda
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Resolution for an EZ Certificate at 9797 Dundee in Nardin Park.
Resolution approved.
Durhal requests waiver, accepted.
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Calloway will read a statement. Will read the actual resolution regarding payday loans.
Follow along here:
pub-detroitmi.escribemeetings.com/filestream.ash…
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Here's a photo of the Resolution In Support Of Michigan Senate Bill 632 Of 2023 Concerning Payday Loans as Council member Calloway reads it out loud.
pub-detroitmi.escribemeetings.com/filestream.ash…
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Calloway moves to approve line item 16.7
Resolution approved.
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Now onto Internal Operations Standing Committee. Sheffield walked on the Detroit City Council calendar with some closures happening around the NFL Draft. Downtown will be inundated with traffic. The building authority will close the Coleman A. Young municipal center.
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Asking that the council cancel activity on Monday and Tuesday during the draft.
The buildings department wants the building closed because of NFL Draft traffic.
They can't close the building when public meetings are scheduled because of the Open Meetings Act.
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It would take quite a lot to move these meetings.
Detroit Mayor Duggan will also be shutting down city services during the draft.
The law department is on board with these closures.
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Benson is sharing some misgivings. We just gave 2 million dollars to the library, what about their auditorium? Open to more conversations.
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The amended calendar is approved. I'm not sure what that means for public meetings during the draft.
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Approved:
Appointing William Marquez to the Historic District Commission effective immediately and expiring on February 14, 2027.
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Line items 17.2 through 17.4
Calloway will be a no vote on 17.2, has expressed concern already.
All 3 resolutions approved.
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Johnson asking for approval around settlements and legal representation and indemnification.
Tate had objections. All approved.
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Approved: Appointing Adrian Keith Bennett to the Detroit City Planning Commission as the At-Large Representative nominated by Council Member Coleman A. Young, II
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17.1, 17.3 17.4 Johnson asking for waivers, approved.
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Line Item 18.1 approved.
100% Major Street Funding – To Provide Irrigation Systems Repair and Maintenance. – Contractor: American Sprinkler & Landscape, Inc. – Location: 34567 Glendale, Detroit, MI 48150
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Planning and Economic Development Standing Committee.
and 19.2
Contract No. 6005583 - 70% ARPA & 30 CDBG% Funding – To Provide a Data Management & Incentive Solution Portal for the Housing and Revitalization Department.
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Contract No. 6006051 -Β  100% ESG Funding – To Support HUD’s Required Coordinated Entry System known as CAM to Assess Households for Housing Services such as Rapid Rehousing. – Contractor: Wayne Metropolitan Community Action Agency
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Calloway is no because the contractor is based in Atlanta.
and 19.2 approved.
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Approved
Reprogramming Amendment to the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Annual Action Plans for Multiple Fiscal Years.
Tate requests waiver, action taken.
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Tate moves to refer 19.5 to committee, action taken.
is approved.
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through 20.5
Emergency demolitions, upgrades/helicopter maintenance for the Police department, underground utility marking, and staking services.
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Calloway has questions about the helicopters. Asking how many helicopters DPD has in operation.
Sheffield will postpone these items until someone from DPD can come speak to the council about it.
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Additional 3 resolutions approved.
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Line Item 20.6 approved; waiver attached.
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Council member Waters has stepped away. Benson motions to move to end of agenda, action taken.
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Line item 21.1 The Transit Center be named in honor of Jason Hargrove, a beloved Detroit Department of Transportation bus driver who passed away from COVID-19 in April of 2020.
Calloway asked to join Benson in supporting this resolution.
Resolution approved with waiver attached.
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Member Waters, establishing July as Senior Citizen Month.
Benson joins in support.
Resolution passed.
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and 21.3 are approved with a waiver attached.
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through 21.9 are all contracts. They may approve them all at once, unless there is objection from council members.
Here is 21.4 through 21.17
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Discussion of Line item 21.9
Valarie Massey is joining, they want to make sure they are approving the right amount for increase of funds for bus tires, it's a contract increase. It might be the wrong description...
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Sheffield requested that the information be emailed to all council members.
Calloway is saying services remain the same, why is the city eating the cost of the increase?
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Answer: The contracted provided proof that the manufacturingcosts went up from the manufactures.They need additional funds because they are putting additional buses on the road.
Calloway is a no on 21.9
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I believe 21.4 through 21.9 are approved.
Some waivers were attached.
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Item 21.10 and 21.11 approved.
Extension for the Piston's Basketball court renovation project and game room equipment for Detroit Recreation Centers.
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21.12 approved Transfer of jurisdiction of a portion of 5710 Russell Street, Detroit, Michigan 48211 from Department of Public Works (DPW) to Detroit Parks and Recreation.
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21.13 Member Waters
Resolution Relative To The Michigan Public Service Commission rejecting the DTE Rate Increase Request.
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Here's the resolution:
Calloway joins in support. No objections.
Resolution passed with waiver attached.
pub-detroitmi.escribemeetings.com/filestream.ash…
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Sheffield has stepped away and ProTem Tate is
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Deputy chief Tiffany Stewart is online with Tony Stuart Limit.
Calloway asking how many helicopters DPD has in its fleet?
Answer 2.
Asking if they are trying to get the ready for the NFL Draft.
Answer: yes, which is why they are asking for an extension to the contract.
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The helicopters will be used for the draft and upgrades will be made after.
and 20.4 are approved.
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The clerk is asking for an item to be walked on from Sheffield. Durhal, Benson, and Tate will join on. The item is walked on.
The resolution is for Mark Gates? I had trouble hearing the resolution.
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The clerk is bringing up an issue with 21.9
Sheffield wanted a completion of the language, council has received the contract previously according to member Johnson.
No additional issues from the clerk.
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3 reports refered to the budget finance and audit standing committee.
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Reports are being referred to various committees quickly.
Johnson said 19.4 should be referred to the proper committee, internal operations.
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Now onto member reports
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Member Durhal is announcing upcoming District 7 events.
detroitmi.gov/events/distric…
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Member Johnson sharing that tonight at 6pm, the Great Lakes Water Authority is attending a community meeting on a proposed pumping station.
At 6pm, 490 Conner Street at Emmual Grace Church.
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No reports from Young or Tate.
Member Waters: a workshop 17950 Vandyke, this Saturday April 13th, noon until 2pm.
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Calloway announcing District 2 events.
Emergency protest in Palmer Park, seniors without access to an elevator or heat, Friday 10:30 to 11:30 at 17437 Third Avenue.
detroitmi.gov/government/cit…
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Communications from the Clerk approved.
Young motions to approve 32.1 and 32.2, and action is taken.
Tate ended the adjourned the meeting at 12:45 PM.
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That concludes my Detroit City Council Formal Session coverage for Tuesday, April 9th.
For more reporting, visit
detroit.documenters.org

Agency Information

Detroit City Council

www.detroitmi.gov

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The Detroit City Council is the legislative body of Detroit, Michigan, United States. The Council is responsible for the creation of local lawsβ€”called ordinances. Additionally they pass resolutions, motions, and the proposed city budget. The full-time council is required to meet every business day for at least 10 months of the year, with at least eight of these meetings occurring at a location besides city hall. The council may convene for special meetings at the call of the mayor or at least four members of council. Areas of responsibility for the Budget, Finance and Audit Committee include, Budget, Finance and the Auditor General.

City Council members are elected on the same cycle as the Mayor and will be elected in 2021. Seven members represent the seven council districts, while two members are elected at-large.

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