The best part of the Tuesday, May 2 Greensboro City Council meeting was what didn’t happen.
The first meeting of the month is usually reserved for the monthly “public forum,” also called speakers from the floor on non-agenda items, and not much else. However, the May 2 meeting had a packed agenda.
Two highly controversial items on the agenda were the resolution opposing the civil services review board bill currently before the state Senate and the short term rental ordinance to regulate Airbnb and VBRO type rentals.
As it turned out there was another controversial item on the agenda – funding an affordable housing project.
At about 7:20 p.m., the City Council had been meeting for nearly two hours and had not gotten to the resolution opposing the civil services board, the short term rental ordinance or the public forum.
Mayor Nancy Vaughan said that the City Council was taking a 10 minute break, noted that 77 people had signed up to speak and asked those who were there to speak about the short term rental ordinance to get together and decide if they wanted the item to be heard at that meeting or postponed.
Vaughan said that the fourth Tuesday of every month was reserved for special meetings and if those concerned about the proposed short term rental ordinance chose to have the item continued, it could be heard at the May 23 meeting and would be the only item on the agenda.
The City Council came back into session at 7:43 p.m. and passed a motion to continue the short term rental ordinance until Tuesday, May 23.
After that announcement the Katie Dorsett Council Chamber went from being just about full to not very full.
The Tuesday, May 23 meeting will be held in the Council Chamber beginning at 5:30 p.m. and the short term rental ordinance is supposed to be the only item on the agenda.
Even with the short term rental ordinance off the agenda, the City Council meeting didn’t adjourn until 9:42 p.m. and that was without a councilmember comment period, which rarely lasts less than 30 minutes and at times drags on for an hour.
Mandate Mayor and her staff can’t even set an agenda properly how does anyone expect any business to be done in a professional manner? Just another example of how business unfriendly our local government is. “Who wants to wait?” ” Who wants to come back?” Is ridiculous and unacceptable. How about set realistic agendas that don’t include things like sour grapes over being ignorant of NC legislative doings despite having a dedicated highly paid staff and in particular one staff member whose entire position is to monitor things in Raleigh? How about Mandate Mayor knows what she is doing and intentionally is trying to dissuade public comment, that is part of her playbook as well, to alter when items are discussed at the last minute, limiting speakers time allotted, incomplete agenda information being available, and so forth.
Also how about letting citizens do what they want with their property legally without additional government taxes, fees, and ever-changing rules? Oh yeah, because Mandate Mayors donors don’t want renters in their fancy neighborhoods….. elite bull crap as always.