Dear People: The agenda is pretty packed tomorrow night (Mon 4/20), but it's a lot of stuff that actually strikes at the core of my values: energy usage, human rights for all (especially focused on LGBTQ people) and questions about first amendment rights related to the banners on the poles downtown, employee blogging, and our policies regarding the Bryan Center. The meeting is at 7 pm in the Bryan Center; please come!
LEGISLATION: We have an ORDINANCE with some small changes to the budget to discuss; and then 5 RESOLUTIONS that would, if passed:
- Establish an Energy Task Force--This task force would have as its goals: reducing our usage, developing an energy conservation program; investigating opportunities for renewable energy generation and businesses related to energy, research funding opportunities (esp. TARP) and develop a plan for adequate base power.
- Release Maintenance Bond--Birch III
- Enter into a cooperative paving plan with Greene County
- Authorize the village manager to complete paperwork for engineering at the CBE (the Antioch-McGregor lot)
- Allow a a tap-in, outside village limits, of two water lines to the Kahoe property south of town (on Hyde Road), per the request of the current owner. This would not cost us anything, and the owner is concerned about the capacity of the current well on that property; they suggest that some wells in the area have ground water contamination. The village solicitor warns that there's no evidence of environmental contamination, so this would be against current policy and strongly recommends against our so doing.
- OLD BUSINESS: An analysis of Bryan Center guidelines with regard to religious services and non-profit status: can we honor the spirit of the original Bryan family deed, which requested that no worship services be performed on the premises, and still provide fair access to the space as a public forum? And, how do we make sure we treat all organizations equally?
- New: Domestic partnership registry: Mr. Chambers has drafted an ordinance whereby YS would allow same-sex or opposite-sex couples to register as partners. This can be helpful for couples in ensuring that they can visit one another in hospital or attain partner benefits from their employers.
- Updated language regarding 1) unlawful discrimination and 2) crimes of "intimidation" (i.e., "hate crimes"): these updated statutes would emphasize that all entities providing public accommodation--restaurants, apartments for rent, etc.--in YS cannot discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, in addition to sex, race, color, religion, disability, national origin, etc., and making it unlawful to commit a crime against persons based on those characteristics, or perceived characteristics.
- Banner policy: We've received a complaint about the "Superman Obama" banner on a village-owned lamp-post on short street. What should be our policy with regard to art that may have political content?
- NEW BUSINESS: Village employee blogging policy: Someone purporting to be a village employee is reported to be anonymously posting on a social-network site "questionable and possibly obscene content." The solicitor has provided suggested language for a blogging policy. I am concerned that we protect free speech rights of employees--and make sure they understand their "whistleblower" rights.
After standing reports from the Commission reps, we'll adjourn to EXECUTIVE SESSION where we'll be discussing:
- The situation at the village property currently leased to Stutzman's Gardening
- The Antioch Chiller agreement.