2nd ward news – October 2016

2nd ward news – October 2016

I spot the hills
With yellow balls in autumn.
I light the prairie cornfields
Orange and tawny gold clusters
And I am called pumpkins.
On the last of October
When dusk is fallen
Children join hands
And circle round me
Singing ghost songs
And love to the harvest moon;
I am a jack-o’-lantern
With terrible teeth
And the children know
I am fooling.

  • Carl Sandburg, “Theme in Yellow”


Happy Halloween! If you were in downtown Ithaca over the weekend, you might have noticed some, err, odd things happening. Wizard duels, quidditch matches, and lots of creative costumes. We take our festivals pretty seriously here in Ithaca, and Wizarding Weekend is one of the best. Hope everyone had a great time. Now on to non-Harry Potter news:

Election 2016

If you’re like me, you’re probably thinking that November 8th cannot come fast enough. The Presidential race is getting most of the attention, but there are some critical local races to watch out for too. Here’s a great overview of all the races you can vote for in the general election in Tompkins County. You can check the Board of Elections website for polling times and locations. Don’t forget to vote!

The Budget

October is always a busy time for Common Council because it’s the month we review the city budget for the following year. Compared to a few years ago, the 2017 budget is relatively drama-free, a sign that the city’s overall financial health is improving. You can find information about the Mayor’s proposed 2017 budget on this webpage, including a reader-friendly overview of the highlights. If you have any questions about the budget, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Maguire TMPUD application

As I’m sure everyone is aware by now, Maguire, the local car company, wants to build a car dealership at Carpenter Business Park (off 3rd street near the Farmer’s Market, Community Gardens, and Wastewater Treatment plant.)

Earlier this year the Common Council passed legislation that would require any proposed development in the waterfront to get approval from Common Council for a period of 18 months while the City works on new zoning for the area. Developers must submit an application that is reviewed by Council before they can proceed with the project.

Maguire is going through that process right now. (You can find their application here). Earlier this month, they came to the Planning Committee of Common Council, which voted to reject their current proposal. Now that recommendation advances to the full Common Council: our next Council meeting is on Wednesday, November 2nd at 6pm in Common Council chambers. Here’s the agenda. If you have any thoughts on the Maguire project, please get in touch!

Water Bills

Several people have asked me whether they can be reimbursed for increases in their water bills due to excessive flushing that happened as a result of discolored water situation over the summer. Good news: the Board of Public Works has developed a reimbursement plan for eligible customers. More here.

Odd/Even Parking

Heads up Ithaca! It’s that time of year again. Odd/even parking regulations go into effect November 1st. More info here.

New Jim Crow Community Read

The Multicultural Resource Center is hosting a community read of Michelle Alexander’s groundbreaking book the New Jim Crow. So far, community events have been really well attended. Here’s more info about upcoming events and book clubs.

Old Library Project

This has been a process, to put it mildly. The County has selected their preferred developer for the Old Library site, Travis/Hyde, and the developers are proposing a new building that would include market-rate housing for seniors and professional office space. The project is in the Dewitt Park historic district, so it needs to get approval from the Ithaca Landmarks Preservation Commission. The ILPC’s review has been quite lengthy and they have pushed to make the building smaller. Here’s a write up from the Ithaca Times. This project will be coming back to the ILPC in the next month or two.

That’s about it for October folks. See you next month!