City Council actions
Emergency medical fee: The Council voted 13-0 to allow the Fire Department to charge $400 per patient for emergency medical care provided at personal injury accidents.
Towing: The Council voted 11-2 to enter into new towing contracts and increase the impound lot towing fee from $128 to $133 and increase the storage fee from $15 to $18 daily. Barbara Johnson (4th Ward) and Dean Zimmermann (6th Ward) voted no.
NRP: The Council voted 13-0 to guarantee a future funding source for the Neighborhood Revitalization Program (NRP) Phase II. It will come from excess money in the Common Project, a pool of tax-increment money from city-backed development projects, estimated to generate $89 million for NRP through 2009.
Development subsidies: The Council voted 12-1 to borrow money from the Hilton Legacy Fund -- netting $3.6 million a year through 2009 -- to give the city money to leverage development projects. It will repay the interest-free Hilton loan from an unrelated loan to Brookfield Properties, due in 2009. Dan Niziolek (10th Ward) voted no.
Domestic partners: The Council voted 13-0 to change the civil rights ordinance to 1) give local effect to domestic partner registrations from other jurisdictions, 2) to prohibit discrimination against domestic partners, compared to persons with spouses, in the areas of real estate, public accommodations, public services and professional organizations, and 3) to amend the housing code to include domestic partners in the definition of family.
Loring bikeway: The Council approved 13-0 the city's negotiation with private property owners to acquire easements for the bikeway.
J.J.'s Dry Dock: The Council voted 12-0 to grant an on-sale liquor license with Sunday Sales to J.J.'s Dry Dock Caf, 401 N. 3rd St. Scott Benson (11th Ward) abstained.
Eat Street Caf: The Council voted 11-0 to grant an on-sale wine and strong beer license to East Street Caf, 1410 Nicollet Ave. S. Benson abstained.
Dunwoody: The Council voted 13-0 to vacate part of Laurel Avenue, Aldrich Avenue North to I-394 as part of the Dunwoody College of Technology expansion project.
Upper Falls hydropower: The Council approved 11-0 City Attorney's comments to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on the draft environmental assessment, part of the process to renew Xcel's license for the St. Anthony Falls Hydroelectric Project. It said more could be done to improve the aesthetic, recreational and historic interpretive opportunities. Absent: Don Samuels (3rd Ward) and Natalie Johnson Lee (5th Ward).
Lower Falls hydropower: The Council approved 11-0 staff comments to the developer of a proposed new 59-million-kilowatt-hour hydroelectric plant at Lower St. Anthony Falls. Staff raised several concerns, including potential visual blight of power lines and impact on the historic district. Absent: Samuels, Johnson Lee.
Skyway: The Council voted 13-0 to negotiate easements for the new Public Safety Facility and Government Center Ramp skyway connection.