Council Starts A New Year
Council President Mary Louise Madigan called the December 19, 2011 meeting of Council to order at 7:30 P.M. Her first order of business was to recognize Carol Rothgery, the Division Manager for the Division of Refuse and Recycling, on the accomplishments of her career upon her retirement.
Mrs. Rothgary began working for the City in 1981 as a clerk typist. In 1992 she was promoted to Unit Manager in the Division of Refuse and became Division Manager in 2009. Some of her accomplishments include mastering the complexities of automated refuse pick up, mandatory recycling, navigating the everchanging efficiencies in waste management while at the same time working through extensive workforce reduction.
Council passed a resolution recognizing Mrs. Rothgary’s many accomplishments.
The next item on the agenda was a resolution regarding Lakewood’s Poet Laureate. Last year for the first time Lakewood chose to have a citizen represent the city as its first poet Laureate. The man they chose was Wilber Knittel. Over the last year Mr. Knittel has read his original poems at Lakewood events such as the commemoration of the Firefighters Memorial, Veterans' Day Celebration and Light Up Lakewood. This year, after his gracious participation in so many Lakewood events, the City decided to continue with Mr. Knittle as the Poet Laureate. Council passed a resolution to make it official.
Fire Chief Scott Gilman then asked Council to consider a resolution that would allow the City to accept a $48,419 grant from Cuyahoga County. These funds would be used to purchase a new rescue boat and necessary equipment for safe water rescues. The grant would require a 25% match from the City, totaling $16,140. The boat would replace the current 12-foot inflatable boat that the city has and will allow for safer operations during water rescues.
Council President Madigan adjourned the meeting at 8:23 P.M.
Starting off the New Year, Lakewood City Council met on January 3, 2012 and Council President Mary Louise Madigan called the meeting to order at 7:30 P.M. The first order of business was to excuse the absence of Councilman Tom Bullock (Ward II), which they did.
The next order of business was for Council to choose who would lead them for the next year. Current Council President, Councilwoman Madigan (Ward IV), nominated Councilman Brian Powers (At-Large) for President. All present members of Council agreed and elected Councilman Powers as the new Council President. Councilman Powers abstained from the vote.
Councilman Powers thanked everyone for their support and said he was looking forward to leading them. He then nominated Councilwoman Madigan for the position of Vice-President. She also received unanimous votes from her fellow councilpersons.
Following the elections of the Council officers, Councilwoman Madigan read a report from the Committee of the Whole regarding Council’s discussion on the ordinance that prohibits certain animals in Lakewood. As currently written, at the end of the list of prohibited animals, it gives the Mayor or his designee the right to give exceptions to the prohibitions for “scientific, educational, or commercial or other” purposes. This leaves the ordinance pretty open to interpretation which some members on Council thought were too open. Councilman Powers introduced an amended version of this ordinance at the November 21, 2011 meeting that would eliminate the word ‘other’ from the ordinance, limiting the exceptions the administration could make.
Councilwoman Madigan reported that the Committee of the Whole (which consists of all members of Council) recommended the adoption of Powers amendment but also suggested a few other changes. Those changes included taking out the provision that allowed the mayor to make permanent exceptions and adding one that requires the mayor to make Council aware of any exceptions at least 30 days in advance. Recommendation was approved 5-1.
Before voting on the changes to the ordinance Councilman, Shawn Juris (Ward III) said that he appreciated the attempts to improve the law but believed that there was more work to do and thought they should continue working on it before voting.
Council passed the ordinance 5-1 with Councilman Juris voting against it.
Coming to the end of a very short meeting, the new Council President Powers adjourned the meeting at 7:55 P.M.
Council meetings are held every first and third Monday of the month at 7:30 P.M. in the City Hall Auditorium. The next regularly scheduled council meeting will be held on January 17, 2012. For a copy of the agenda or for any other information regarding the Lakewood City Council, you can find it at onelakewood.com/citygovern_council.html.