Comments on: Budget Deliberations Focus on Small Items it's like being there Tue, 16 Sep 2014 04:56:38 +0000 hourly 1 By: UMGrad1234 UMGrad1234 Fri, 22 May 2009 15:49:32 +0000 We went to war with Iraq because Saddam had WMD, and Project Grow got defunded because Mike Anglin was absent. Two great myths.

Rapundalo was absent, as well. Oh, and a majority of those on Council voted against refunding Project Grow. So let’s look to Ward 5′s other representative, Carsten Hohnke (who explained his no vote with an absurd vision of “larger-scale community gardening”) and all of the others who refused to find money to fund Project Grow, or to Leigh Greden who is under the megalomaniacal delusion that city services are some kind of citizen entitlement.

I’ve watched Leigh Greden and his colleagues on City Council vote to fritter away $200 million in tax money in less than six months (Court House $90 million over 30 years and parking garage $110 million over 30 years). The DDA just voted to spend almost $1 million dollars on a way finding system for the DDA area. Raise parking rates; spend almost $1 million on extraneous signs.

Project Grow is the least of our worries.

By: Sabra Briere Sabra Briere Thu, 21 May 2009 19:42:04 +0000 Dear Readers,
Please. Don’t pile on Council member Anglin, no matter how unhappy you are.
Council member Anglin came to me (Sabra) a couple of weeks ago, and asked me to co-sponsor the resolution for Project Grow.
Some of you who are close to Council member Anglin may know that his family has been dealing with health issues (not HIS). But if you don’t, it’s been a really rough winter at his house.
He had to travel last week. He knew that, and asked me to carry the ball on Project Grow.
I did that as well as I could. We cannot vote in absentia.
I’m just sorry that I was too naive to realize that I could have guaranteed his name appeared on the resolution. I thought you had to be present to win. I also didn’t think to make his apologies.
Council member Anglin has been the champion of Project Grow all along. I am more sorry that his obligations to his family are heavy at this time.
We will both continue working with Project Grow and giving it our individual support.

By: Jim Blake Jim Blake Thu, 21 May 2009 17:49:44 +0000 It was simple, I called the city Clerk’s office. It takes 6 votes to amend the budget and 7 for the final approval.

Had Council Member Anglin been there to do what he said he supported, Project Grow would have been funded.

By: Dave Askins Dave Askins Thu, 21 May 2009 17:31:50 +0000 Re: [7]

There’s a couple of informational issues identified in this comment.

One is what the actual vote was. Like the previous commenters, I had it scored as 5 for, 4 against. But based on my notes, I was not able to reconcile that tally against the name-by-name tally — thus did not include it in the report.

Part of my thought in not tracking it down was to consciously resist the hard-wired human tendency identified in previous comments to lavish excessive focus on the matter.

Aside from this specific Project Grow vote, though, there are at least two ways to find out what the outcome of an Ann Arbor city council vote was — both of which are in principle accessible from the computer a typical Chronicle reader uses to read this publication. [The fact that I haven't tracked it down, either, I hope suffices to blunt any implicit criticism of others for not doing so.]

(1) The city council online agenda gets updated with a breakdown of any roll call votes.

(2) CTN’s video on demand

For (1), this hasn’t been done for the May 18 meeting. For (2) however, the online streaming video is available.

If someone eventually tracks that down (using either of those sources, or even some other resource), I think it’d be a community benefit to provide information more precise than what I’ve done. So if you use (1), include the direct link to the vote outcome [just paste it into the comment field ... until we add some additional bells and whistles to the comment field, we just link-ify them on our end.] Or if you use (2), note the time code where the vote takes place.

And generally, when folks contribute information via comments — like what campaign contributions a candidate has received and from whom — the public benefit is maximized, I think, when its source is cited. Sure, it adds credibility, but more than that, it might introduce other readers to the fact that the information is actually fairly easy to get if you want it, requiring no real “reporter superpowers.” It’s just a matter of investing some time pointed in the right direction. For the campaign finance information, one public source is the county’s website.

The second informational issue is the 7-vote requirement versus the 6-vote regular requirement. Does the 7-vote majority apply to amendments as well as the vote on the whole budget? This same issue arose at Tuesday’s planning commission meeting (a nine-member body). They needed 6 votes on the adoption of the whole resolution adopting the downtown plan — because it was a recommendation for council — but only 5 votes to pass an amendment to the plan. Maybe that’s not an analogous situation?

In any case, if someone looks that up, kindly cite the source, please.

By: Karen Sidney Karen Sidney Thu, 21 May 2009 16:38:52 +0000 It takes 7 votes to adopt the budget. I thought the resolution for Project Grow funding got 5 votes, so it would need 2 more votes to pass.

By: Tom Whitaker Tom Whitaker Thu, 21 May 2009 13:36:08 +0000 I got an email from another donor, too. Matching my donation and/or announcing it on this site is not as important as supporting Project Grow in any amount, publicly or privately–or by volunteering for that matter.

It’s easy to get caught up in local politics and specific local issues, but there are a lot of good things happening in Ann Arbor, too. It’s programs like Project Grow that help me remember why I’ve stayed put for over 30 years.

By: Jim Blake Jim Blake Thu, 21 May 2009 03:27:20 +0000 Good for you Tom. I accept the challenge.

I supported Project Grow funding too and I was disappointed by the way the vote went down. Mike Anglin told people he was for it, that he was going to introduce the resolution to restore the funding. But then he wasn’t even there. It lost by one vote.

My check won’t be as big as yours but I will send it.

By: Tom Whitaker Tom Whitaker Wed, 20 May 2009 22:09:35 +0000 I just made a $1000 contribution to Project Grow. I challenge six of my fellow regular Chronicle commentators to match this donation to make up for the loss of City of Ann Arbor support. Here’s a link to the Project Grow website.

If you use the online donation service, please add the 4.75% during the checkout process to cover the handling costs.

This donation is in loving memory of my mom, Ruth T. Whitaker, who was a prolific gardener and a dedicated community activist during her 20 years in Ann Arbor.

I hope others will accept this challenge and support community gardens and local, urban food production. There are so many good reasons to do so.


By: Edward Vielmetti Edward Vielmetti Wed, 20 May 2009 19:49:13 +0000 Why are the battles so bitter?
Because the stakes are so low.

By: CDBF CDBF Wed, 20 May 2009 19:13:27 +0000 Stagnation also leads to decay, only faster.