The budget ordinance concerning the International Civil Rights Center and Museum on the April 5 City Council agenda is no longer on the consent agenda.
The ordinance facilitating the transfer of $1 million in the City of Greensboro budget to make the payment to the ICRCM has been moved from the consent agenda to the general business agenda.
In an article on April 1, the Rhino Times noted that the budget ordinance concerning the controversial allocation of $1 million to the ICRCM was on the consent agenda.
According to the script read at the beginning of every meeting by Mayor Nancy Vaughan, the consent agenda is a grouping of “routine and noncontroversial items” all voted on with one vote. In order for a councilmember to vote no on a consent agenda item or discuss it, the item first has to be removed from the consent agenda.
With the item on the budget ordinance moved from the consent agenda to the general business agenda, councilmembers will be able to comment on the ordinance, which transfers the $1 million from the “ABC Profit Distribution” fund to an account for “Contributions to Nongovernmental Entities.”
However, commenting on the resolution at this point is a case of closing the barn door after the horse has bolted. The $1 million was wired to the ICRMC on Wednesday, March 31 after the City Council voted 7-1 during the annual City Council retreat on Wednesday, March 23 to allocate a total of $2 million to the ICRCM.
The lone no vote for the allocation was from Councilmember Nancy Hoffmann, who said she was not opposed to the allocation but needed time to go over the financial documents provided to the City Council, which showed that over five years the ICRCM had a $9 million loss. Hoffmann said that she had received the requested financial documents that day and had not had time to go over them.
Councilmember Justin Outling seemed to be in agreement, noting that not all the financials requested by the City Council had been provided and that the city should not make the allocation first and then request the documents.
The motion made by Councilmember Goldie Wells stated that the $1 million allocation would not be made until City Manager Tai Jaiyeoba received the requested documents and Outling agreed with that process.
The ordinance on the agenda simply makes the adjustments in the budget to account for the $1 million that has already been allocated to the ICRCM.
The additional $1 million will be paid in $250,000 increments over four years.
Jaiyeoba said it was not clear how the $250,000 would be used by the ICRCM.