Great Streets Creates Skepticism at Manchester's Board of Aldermen Meeting
A moment of silence for the untimely death of a police officer started Monday night's meeting. Budgeting concerns over the Great Streets initiative and police department solar panels were also discussed.
The Manchester Board of Aldermen discussed a number of issues Monday night, but before the meeting started, the board held a moment of silence to honor a Manchester police detective who died May 24. The memorial service for Dave Prouty, 37, was held Monday at Manchester United Methodist Church. Prouty reportedly fell ill and died from the illness. He leaves behind a wife and children. On June 16, Prouty would have served on the Manchester Police Department for 14 years. Check back to Town and Country-Manchester Patch for more on Dave Prouty.
Following are other issues discussed at Monday night's meeting.
The Great Streets Master Plan, which seeks to improve aesthetics and traffic congestion on Manchester Road west of Highway 141, didn’t receive overwhelming support from the Manchester Board of Aldermen Monday. Board members were skeptical about endorsing the project.
The plan’s budget is still uncertain, but it would need at least $5 million-$7 million of federal grant money and $2 million from the City of Manchester.
“We wouldn’t get much out of it, but we’re happy to kick in,” Ward 2 Alderman Marilyn Ottenad said in a joking manner.
The East-West Council of Governments, the organization that introduced the initiative, also needs the commitment of the five cities that share the highway: Manchester, Winchester, Ballwin, Ellisville and Wildwood. So far, only Ballwin and Ellisville have official agreed to cooperate.
Manchester's Director of Planning, Zoning and Economic Development Franz Kraintz told board members that although it is not official, it appears Winchester and Wildwood are on board, and Wildwood is close to making an agreement to endorse the plan.
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Solar Panels at the Manchester Police Facility
Dane Glueck, president of Straight Up Solar, a company that designs solar panels, gave a presentation that explained the environmental benefits of the company’s solar panel system. Glueck was also involved in a solar panel discussion in Town and Country, and his company was the contractor that built a solar panel system for a Town and Country resident.
The installation of the solar panels would cost up to $110,000 after a $50,000 rebate, and net savings would be about $30,000 in 30 years, Glueck said.
Board members have questioned why this wasn't done during the initial construction of the building.
Vote Required to Pass a Resolution
Ward 1 Alderman Hal Roth began a discussion among board members to see if they would be willing to seek outside legal counsel to determine if a board can pass a resolution without the entire board present for the vote. He wants an attorney to clarify whether the entire board must be present to pass a resolution, or whether a resolution can be passed by the majority of the board present for the vote. The issue came to light last year during a vote for the board president. It also sparked a lawsuit filed against the board by then Alderman Bob Tullock. Roth said Monday night that he still felt the board should receive guidance on the issue to resolve it. The board, however, decided not to move forward with pursuing guidance from an outside legal counsel.
Ward 1 Alderman Paul Hamill is concerned with weekend city code enforcement. Hamill said he has received several emails from residents with complaints about trash violations, grass violations and an abundance of retailer business signs. Moreover, he also said it was previously approved in the city budget to hire a part- time person to enforce city code. Board members decided to move forward with hiring a part-time person. The position may be posted as soon as Tuesday.