Wednesday, September 5, 2018

What happened at the 8/4/18 Council meeting: In addition to MLS stadium-fairground giveaway passing, Edgehill conservation overlay approved, Bordeaux waste facility approved and bills to address TIF financing study and more.





This meeting s four and half hours long. The most important issue of the meeting is the future of the MLS stadium and the giveaway of ten acres of fairground property. By now anyone who care about this issue knows that the MLS stadium and fairground property giveaway passed. For more on this see Council approves fairground giveaway. 

Below is a summary of other meeting highlights. Parts of the meeting I watched in real time and parts of it watched at double speed and I skipped parts of the meeting looking for the good parts.  To follow the meeting you may want to access the meeting agenda, staff analysis and my commentary on the agenda which you can find at this link. If you do not want to watch the meeting but find out what happened to a specific piece of legislation, you may want to refer to the meeting minutes. They are not yet posted by should be posted by tomorrow or the day after. You can find the minutes at this link.

The invocation is offered by Councilman Robert Swope. A message from the mayor urges the council to approve the MLS stadium. It is rare the mayor offers such a message. No surprise, all mayoral appointments to boards and commission are confirmed unanimously. Bills on Public Hearing are zoning matters which I did not find any of much importance and none proved very controversial. As is the norm all bills on first reading pass by a single vote.

Resolutions: Most are mundane things and are approved on the consent agenda. These are the ones of interest:

Resolution RS2018-1328 is one of the fairground MLS stadium resolutions. It is moved out of order to follows the bills related to this issue.

Resolution RS2018-1373 calls for a county-wide referendum election to ascertain the will of the people regarding the issuance of general obligation bonds by Metro for the construction of a new Major League Soccer Stadium at the Fairgrounds. Senator Cooper makes a good speech advocating passage to no avail. Councilman Glover makes a good speech. It failed by a vote of 12 in favor and 25 opposed. To see the discussion got to timestamp 28:47 in the video. Action on the bill is concluded on this at timestamp at 1:05:05.

Resolution RS2018-1385 by Councilman Blalock  is a resolution calling on grocery store operators within Davidson County to take effective measures to reduce the use and/or impact of single-use plastic carryout bags and report the measures being undertaken in this effort, and encouraging the use of reusable bags by residents and businesses within Davidson County. In a previous council meeting Blalock had sponsored legislation that failed to ban plastic bags. That effort failed. This resolution is deferred.

Resolution RS2018-1386 says that if we do build a MLS stadium that the practice field be located in District 1. It passes.
Bills on Second Reading: 
Bill BL2018-1293 approves a privilege tax on the sale of tickets to events at the new Major League Soccer stadium.  Bill 1289 also imposes the privilege tax. This one is one withdrawn.

Bill BL2018-1314 establishes a Blue Ribbon Commission to identify government inefficiencies. This is a positive development. It passes.

Bill BL2018-1315   creates a Tax Increment Financing Study and Formulating Committee. This is another positive development. Despite Nashville's massive growth, Metro is short of money. A lot of that is because the development was financed by Tax Increment Financing and the tax revenue does not flow into city coffers but goes to MDHA to repay TIF. This passes.
Bills on Third Reading:
 Second Substitute Bill BL2016-414   is a rezoning bill disapproved by the Planning Commission.  It changes from R6 to SP zoning for various properties along Elvira Avenue, Maynor Avenue, and Keeling Avenue, approximately 600 feet west of Anderson Place (4.86 acres), to permit a maximum of 180 residential units. I have no opinion on the merits of this bill and am simply calling attention to it because it is a disapproved bill and  required 27 positive votes to pass.There was quite a bid of discussion on this. It  passed. If you care about this, go to timestamp 1:22:36 to watch the deliberation.

Bill BL2018-1245 is the controversial proposal to apply a Neighborhood Conservation Overlay District to the Edgehill community. This is approved by the Planning Commission so it can pass with a simple majority and I expect it to pass. It only passed on one vote when before the Planning Commission and when on Council public hearing, a lot of people spoke on this bill both pro and con. The bill is substituted to take out a couple properties.  To see the discussion on the bill see timestamp 1:47:10.- 2:00:36. It passes on a voice vote.
  
Bill BL2018-1280  approves the plans for a non-hazardous liquid waste processing facility to be located at 2832 Whites Creek Pike. This was controversial on public hearing and passed on Second reading by a vote of 21 to 12 to 3. I have no opinion on the merits of the issue. However, to be honest, if I were Black and lived in Bordeaux I would probably feel I was being dumped on also. Bordeaux has been the home to a landfill, the mulch recycling facility and the State prison. I can understand the resident's resentment to another waste facility even if it is state of the art and sanitary. To see the discussion see timestamp 2:021:09- 2:24:27.  It passes by a vote of 31-7-1.
At this point I am discontinuing an item by item report. Most of the rest of this meeting is taken up by the MLS-fairground giveaway issue. If you are concerned at all you already know the outcome. To see the remainder of the meeting and the debates on the bills related to this topic start at timestamp 2:24:23.
Bill BL2018-1289 approves the demolition of certain buildings and structures necessary for the construction of a new Major League Soccer Stadium at the Fairgrounds Nashville, and amending Title 5 of the Metropolitan Code to impose a privilege tax on the sale of tickets to events at the new Major League Soccer stadium. Approved. 

 Bill BL2018-1291 on Third Reading declares the ten acres to be given away as surplus property and approves a ground lease for the property. Approved.

Bill BL2018-1293 approves a privilege tax on the sale of tickets to events at the new Major League Soccer stadium. Withdrawn. Same issue addressed in
Bill BL2018-1289.

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