Jan 11 2015

Student Report: Council Meeting of January 5, 2015

– Council approved the Recreation Department request to improve East Wing of Piedmont Center for the Arts and a Grand Avenue Conditional Use Permit. –

– Piedmont High School student Bryan Ford’s report on the January 5, 2015 Piedmont City Council Meeting –

 On Monday, January 5th, 2015, the Piedmont City Council met for the first meeting of the year in the City Hall Council Chambers. The Council meets on the first and third Mondays of every month to discuss issues related to the city. Residents of Piedmont are not only welcome to attend these meetings but encouraged to express their opinion on topics regarding Piedmont.

The first major item on the agenda was an application for a conditional use permit at 1375 Grand Avenue by the Stover Foundation. Paul Benoit, the City Administrator, previously reviewed the application and recommended to the Council that they approve. Tim Rood, a City Councilman, started the discussion by pointing out that Piedmont requires a high standard of design. He restated the idea that office buildings must look attractive and appealing in order to be approved. After further review by council members, the application passed unanimously.

The next item on the agenda was the consideration of awarding a contract of $14,725 to Atlas Heating Co. to install a heating system in the East Wing of the Piedmont Center for the Arts. Including the contract, the total construction budget for this project is $20,384. Paul Benoit explained that the budget accounted for unexpected costs as well as other construction not done by Atlas. After Councilwoman Teddy King asked for further clarification of the project, Benoit explained that the East Wing was the only wing in the building to have no existing heat. Sara Lillevand, Recreation Director, described the use of the rooms in the East Wing, such as renting them out for classes or camps for children. After hearing Lillevand’s report on the wing, the Council unanimously voted to pass the contract.

I agree with the Council’s decision on awarding the contract to Atlas Heating Company. Heating the East Wing will help complete the building and make the space more comfortable for anyone inside. This enhancement will make the space attractive to future renters. The Piedmont Center for the Arts, originally an unused space has been transformed into a versatile place. This improvement will further enhance the uses of this building.

In an interview with Paul Benoit, the City Administrator, we discussed the impact that PHS students have on the City Council. As the City Administrator, he plans and organizes many city functions. He enjoys listening to what kids have to say and generally hears beneficial ideas. Benoit told me he liked my idea, moving a stop sign to a more logical location, because it was easy and effective.

Bryan Ford

Editors’ Note:  The opinions expressed are those of the author and not necessarily those of the Piedmont Civic Association.

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