by Karen Mead-Elford, co-editor
Marlene Webster, Shiawassee County Commissioner for District 1, offered an update on the possible construction of a new jail facility to the Owosso City Council during the Monday, March 4 meeting at city hall. Webster shared that a May election has been called for voters to determine the jail construction.
During council comments, council member Janae Fear shared her enthusiasm on the recent successes related to Tarzan, performed by the Owosso Community Players, the Smithsonian Waterways exhibit at the Shiawassee Arts Center and the poetry offered by 8th-grade students, also on exhibit at the arts center. Fear also mentioned the new river guide that is available to the public.
Mayor Chris Eveleth agreed on the poetry exhibit, sharing with the council that he was pleased to have been a judge of the poetry competition and was impressed at the writing level of many 8th-grade students.
Owosso City Manager Nathan Henne offered a project status report, mentioning the rail tail extension into Owosso and ongoing work with MDOT. Eveleth then acknowledged that Owosso Assistant Manager Amy Cyphert is leaving her position in Owosso.
The consent agenda included a number of special assessments for Abrey Street, Allendale Avenue, Monroe Street and North Street, establishing a public hearing for Monday, March 18.
All four items of business were approved by council during the Monday evening meeting, including establishing a water utilities easement along the northern edge of property at 815 Division Street, which is city-owned. Cyphert outlined the Capital Improvement Plan (CIP) to council members, emphasizing that the plan will act like a “road map” to council members and staff. A CIP generally identifies fairly short-term plans related to the infrastructure of a municipality. Council member Lori Bailey had questioned if the council would be limited if the plan needed to be altered, but Cyphert assured the council that the plan “acts like a suggestion” to help focus on coordinating certain projects and the budgeting process. Along with the CIP, the council also approved the adoption of the goals established during an informal workshop on Tuesday, Jan. 29.
Council then moved into a closed session “for the purpose of discussing collective bargaining negotiations” after that had been accepted as an item of business, as well.
The next meeting is planned for Monday, March 18.