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City Council (View All)

Study Session

Minutes
Monday, July 20, 2009

MINUTES FOR CITY COUNCIL STUDY SESSION

Monday, July 20, 2009

Siskiyou Room, 51 Winburn Way

 

 

Mayor Stromberg called the meeting to order at 5:31 p.m.

 

Councilor Jackson, Silbiger, Navickas, Voisin, Chapman and Lemhouse were present.   

 

1.     Look Ahead Review

City Administrator Martha Bennett reviewed the items on the Council Look Ahead and noted the September Council meetings had moved to September 8 and the 22nd.

 

2.    Does Council have any changes to the draft ballot measure for the Food and  Beverage Tax?

Management Analyst Ann Seltzer provided the staff report.  City Administrator Martha Bennett explained the wording on page 3 of the ordinance under 4.34.020 Tax Imposed D. was not limited to wastewater projects and could include capital projects determined by Council during the budget process. 

 

To address Restaurant Association concerns regarding major single events, staff proposed a $400 cap on a single event food service for events over $8,000.  Ms. Seltzer distributed a counter proposal from the Restaurant Association removing the cap and exempting single food service events serving more than 150 customers or exceeding $5,000.  A single food serving was described as a wedding or the meals served during conferences.

 

Council and staff discussed what sections of Southern Oregon University’s food service might be taxable and whether the tax applied to facilities like Mountain Meadows or food stands at the Growers Market.  Staff will research and provide an update to Council. 

 

3.     What direction does Council wish to provide about Staff’s suggestions for kicking off the Economic Development Strategy development for the City of Ashland? 

City Administrator Martha Bennett and Project Manager Adam Hanks provided the staff report. The vision statement would be the starting point for the economic development strategy with existing City policies like the Comprehensive Plan feeding into it.  

 

Councilor Silbiger commented it was important to start with the vision and quickly narrow down agreements, then assess Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) noting the more difficult part would be the reality of the opportunities and the threats to the economy.  

 

Council discussed having more of a presence on the Governance Group and made suggestions on individuals and industry representatives in the community they might invite to participate in the Governance and Focus groups.

 

Mayor Stromberg noted groups in the community, with expertise in business and economic strategy, who do not currently run businesses.  He solicited feedback from audience member Tom Bradley who suggested coffee klatches as a way to gather and assimilate information.  Mr. Bradley also suggested using a website to collect information and sending questions to certain elements of the community to generate ideas on how to proceed.   

Ms. Bennett asked Council to provide staff with additional interests, groups and individuals with specific expertise to invite to participate by September 8, 2009 for the September 22, 2009 meeting.  

 

Meeting adjourned at 6:48 p.m.

 

 

Respectfully submitted,

Dana Smith

Assistant to the City Recorder

 

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