It appears to be official that the Greensboro City Council will have a work session on Thursday, Sept. 29 beginning at 2 p.m. in the Katie Dorsett Council Chamber in city hall.
An email announcing the work session was sent out on Friday, Sept. 23, and the work session is currently listed on the City Council Meetings page of the City of Greensboro website. The announcement notes that one or more councilmembers may be participating remotely. Those who would like to view the work session without going to city hall may do so at https://www.greensboro-nc.gov/government/city-council-meetings .
Before the COVID-19 restrictions changed everything, City Council work sessions were held in the Plaza Level Conference Room and had to be viewed in person. Audio recordings of the meetings were available after the meeting, but it was often difficult to determine who was speaking or what action was taken from the recording. Formal votes are rarely taken at work sessions, but the City Council does make decisions based on a consensus. The “votes” indicating a consensus were usually taken by a show of hands, which is not something that can be determined from an audio recording.
Post COVID restrictions the work sessions are held in the Katie Dorsett Council Chamber, broadcast live and the video is available for viewing after the meeting.
While the Sept. 29 meeting has been officially announced, there is some doubt about what will be discussed at the work session ,since no agenda for the meeting has been released.
At the City Council meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 20, City Manager Tai Jaiyeoba told the City Council that the Sept. 29 work session would be on housing.
However, an earlier sent to city councilmembers dated Sept. 6 states that the topics of the Sept. 29 work session will be “(a) Downtown Parking Plan (b) Strategic Energy Plan.”
That email lists “Housing Program Updates” as the topic for the Thursday, Oct. 27 City Council work session.
There was some controversy about the downtown parking plan. Before he was elected to the City Council on July 26, Downtown Greensboro Inc. (DGI) President Zack Matheny complained about DGI not being included in meetings about the downtown parking plan.
Now that Matheny is a member of the City Council, it will be more difficult to leave the organization with its focus on downtown business and development out of discussions of a comprehensive downtown parking plan.