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Friday, February 29, 2008

A couple of things.....

Fejervary Zoo, Here is what we as a council saw in terms of budget decisions, which is where it was presented. Current annual cost $146,000, attendance 23,000+, annual intake approx. $30,000, final cost $116,000 to keep it running as is. The question was put to us do we hire a full time curator at an additional $35,000(I believe). Now I have taken my kids there and they enjoyed it in the past, personally I felt that it could be done better. Where is our niche? Are exotic animals a niche when Niabi has more and is still fairly close? I feel that we can concentrate our efforts on a different niche, revitalize that area, and bring more people in without having alter the character of Mother Goose land. Some thoughts that were tossed out were a better petting zoo, a dog park area, an environmental learning center, and more. How do we get the most for our money? 2101 Main St. / Henry Duetsch House There has been a lot of discussion on this topic and I just want to express my thought process. Here is an old building that may or may not be historic depending on who you ask. The owner doesn't want it. The HPC won't let them tear it down. The one thing I don't want to see is demoliton by neglect. There is too much of that now. It should not matter who is proposing what and past history when it comes to make the decision. The council has made the decision to permit demoltion after a stay of 60 days to allow Ald. Boom to work with St. Paul's to try and find an alternative to demolition. It is my hope that Ald. Boom is able to find a benefactor willing to pony up the cash to move and restore the house. What if the city took the house and moved it? Would you as taxpayers want the city to save this house? I hope a couple of things happen. If the building cannot be saved, that the church works with the HPC to salvage as much from the building to be used in restoring other houses. That the council looks at the HPC and tries to see if there is a better way to work with owners of historic homes in helping them to restore old homes to avoid demolition by neglect and or machine. Right now it feels that (and maybe I am wrong, correct me please if so) the HPC just passes judgement and lets the owner try and make the lemonade out of lemons. I understand their charge of preservation, but I feel the city should be taking a more active role. Finally, the budget, we are taking at least half a dozen opportunities (which I believe is three times more than last year) to discuss various issues and the thing I like to see the most is the amount of questions being asked. I feel the council as a whole has no problem with asking the tough questions and making sure we are getting our moneys worth in decisions being made.


Anonymous said...

Nate - shame on you for voting to demo that historic house. We have rules, you need to follow them. You are all a great disappointment. Grow a backbone and a brain.

Anonymous said...

Dear Alderman Brown,

How much money was wasted buying
extra salt and transporting it at
exorbadent prices.

How many first ward streets went
unplowed because of this lack of
foresight and preparedness.

Why sould the city administrator
or public works director get a
bonus or raise in pay, let a lone
keep their jobs for this kind of
mistake. A mistake that was made
10 or 15 years ago by the same
public works director that almost
got her fired from what I have
been told.

The animals at the Zoo are not
exotic they are native to this
area. The cats are already here
and the wolves are in illinios.

I value the Zoo more than a
$1,000,000 skate park.

2% of the 40% of the capital
improvement money from the 1 cent
sales tax would pay for the Zoo.

half of 1% would pay for a full
time curator.



The first requisite of a good citizen in this republic of ours is that he shall be able and willing to pull his weight - Theodore Roosevelt