Comments on: Ann Arbor Budget: Formal Commencement it's like being there Tue, 16 Sep 2014 04:56:38 +0000 hourly 1 By: Chuck Warpehoski Chuck Warpehoski Wed, 28 Apr 2010 14:55:17 +0000 “Community services recommendations include a $260,000 reduction in funding to nonprofits.”

Is there any sense what nonprofits and services would be affected by this?

By: Alice Ralph Alice Ralph Mon, 26 Apr 2010 21:58:43 +0000 @”In the clerk’s office, costs would be reduced by publishing legal notices in the Washtenaw Legal News, for a savings of $24,000.” Could I just protest this again? I subscribed to WLN (it’s extremely affordable) only to find that the printed copy is MAILED on publication. That means that I would receive the print version on Tuesday following the Thursday publication. Although an associated account will give you access to the online version immediately upon publication, I find this arrangement lacking. We have to find a better way. A large digital display attached to the City Hall? Or, more realistically, just use a2gov delivery for this purpose, too, with feeds to screens in public library locations.

By: Pete Richards Pete Richards Thu, 22 Apr 2010 03:08:23 +0000 Your top photo is destined to be a collector’s item.

By: Dave Askins Dave Askins Wed, 21 Apr 2010 20:07:24 +0000 Re: [2] “1. Revenue projected by staff for adding ALL of the meters they recommended was $380,000. Not $450,000. Even so, the $380K was viewed with a lot of skepticism by the DDA, Mayor and Council, and rightly so.”

Tom, bear in mind that the $380,000 figure was based on a gradual installation of the meters through FY 2010 — the city could not have installed them all instantly even if they’d gone forward with the plan. So that lower estimate was based on the idea that there would be only partial revenues through FY 2010 with the full benefit seen in FY 2011.

It’s worth noting, I think, that the overly optimistic estimates for revenues from those parking meters were built into the two-year financial plan. Not so with the estimated extra revenues that would come from the new fine schedule, which was postponed at Monday’s meeting. Crawford’s comments at the council meeting actually cleared up some misunderstanding from the Sunday night caucus, where councilmembers were clearly under the impression that the estimated extra $635K was a part of the budget plan. Crawford was unambiguous on Monday in stating that the $635K was not assumed in the revenues for the FY 2011 budget, but would just be extra revenue if it did materialize.

By: Tom Whitaker Tom Whitaker Wed, 21 Apr 2010 19:56:47 +0000 “The plan for installing new parking meters in near downtown neighborhoods, which was included in the FY 2010 budget but not implemented, will also not be part of the FY 2011 budget, for a projected revenue loss of around $450,000.”

WHOA!! This is a completely inaccurate statement.

1. Revenue projected by staff for adding ALL of the meters they recommended was $380,000. Not $450,000. Even so, the $380K was viewed with a lot of skepticism by the DDA, Mayor and Council, and rightly so.

2. SOME of the proposed meters were installed in certain locations with existing commercial activity and are currently generating revenue, at least in theory. Probably not as much as the “dubious” projections put on these meters by staff, but they are there.

3. The $180,000 in revenues from the DDA lots at 5th and William and 415 W. Washington were redirected to the general fund as a partial trade-off worked out by Councilmember Smith. The intent was to keep meters out of neighborhoods and to keep the City from expanding its own parking operations, which would be out of the DDA’s control. Smith expressed a preference for the DDA to be able to maintain holistic management of the downtown parking system.

So, the net effect of the decision to not install ALL of the parking meters is $380,000, minus $180,000, minus the revenue from the meters that WERE installed, minus the cost of the meters and signage NOT installed, minus an adjustment to the original revenue projection which was clearly inflated in the first place.

As evidence, drive up South Division between Packard and William during the day and see how many of those new meters on the west side of the street have cars parked at them. I don’t think these were installed as part of this neighborhood meter plan, but it gives very clear evidence of how little neighborhood meters are used. People who park in the neighborhoods either live there or, in the case of neighborhoods without a resident parking permit program, are working downtown (or going to classes) and parking their cars all day for free.

We need to expand the residential parking permit program. This will generate additional revenue to the City without installing ugly, unproductive meters in residential areas. It will also serve to push the freeloaders back into the downtown parking system, or even better, into public transportation. No need to buy, maintain or empty meters, or pay for the coins to be processed.

As currently enforced, the permit areas allow up to two hours of free parking for non-residents, so it doesn’t completely eliminate parking opportunities, it just limits the commuter cars or those that are simply being stored on the street long-term.

By: Alan Goldsmith Alan Goldsmith Wed, 21 Apr 2010 18:43:04 +0000 “They’d also asked a private property owner at Stadium & Prescott, who ordinarily rents out the space for football day parking, if they could rent the area for their demonstration. The property owner had agreed, Sanders said, but the city’s planning department had pointed out that the area is zoned residential, which prevented its use for a demonstration.”

Then the city’s ‘planning department’ better get out a copy of the Constituion and quit pretending they are living in some third world dictatorship. Why hasn’t council stood up against this outrage? Guess we are headed to yet another lawsuit against the city. Explain to me again how this was wrong when Bush/Cheney were in power and it’s morally correct NOW? Except for Sabra Briere the council is, once again, quiet as church mice. Explain to me again how this reflects the values of the Democratic Party?