4/5 and 4/19 meetings summaries, re-election kickoff
It’s been a minute since I wrote a summary of our City Council meetings. Below are some updates:
1. We approved a contract with IKE Smart City for installation of kiosks downtown. If you’ve traveled to other cities recently, you’ve probably seen these, or similar, kiosks in operation. If not, you can check them out here. Initially, 15-20 kiosks will be installed within city right-of-way in select areas downtown to help residents and visitors navigate businesses, attractions, and transit. When not in use, they will display local artwork and advertisements, which produce revenue for the Downtown Raleigh Alliance.
2. We approved an immediate, 2% cost of living raise for all full-time city staff to help with rising costs due to inflation. Our fiscal year begins July 1, and typically raises are determined in the new budget. Staff is still working through the proposed FY23 budget, which we will vote upon before June 30, but in the meantime, these 2% raises were added immediately. Additional employee compensation issues will be addressed in the FY23 budget.
3. Along with Wake County, Knightdale, and Morrisville, we entered into an agreement with Campbell Law School to assist in resolving claims of individuals who believe a business or organization has discriminated against them in violation of the Nondiscrimination Ordinance we enacted late last year. I was honored to speak at the event and sign the ordinance for Raleigh.
4. Last week, I attended the intercity visit to Salt Lake City with 160 other elected officials, community and business leaders from Raleigh and Wake County. I absorbed a lot of good information, particularly about transportation and transit, which is an area where Salt Lake City is really excelling. I look forward to continuing to increase protected bike facilities and bus shelters and benches in Raleigh, while we also work to implement the Wake County Transit plan, including Bus Rapid Transit and more frequency on our existing bus routes. We must also make commuter rail a priority: https://www.readyforrailnc.com/
5. The committee I chair, Economic Development and Innovation, will have two meetings this month (May 10 and May 24) to discuss two very important and exciting issues: social districts and accessory commercial units (ACUs). We will address ACUs first, on May 10 and then turn to social districts on May 24.
Our next City Council meetings are today at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m.
It’s also BIKE MONTH! To celebrate, please join me at my re-election kickoff event tomorrow, May 4, 5:30-7 p.m. at Trophy. This kickoff event is focused on reducing car-dependency and highlighting multimodal transportation. If you can, we encourage you to join by way of walking, bike, scooter, or bus, though we understand this isn’t an option for everyone!