There's an article in the Register-Star today celebrating the reactivation, after decades of disuse, of the sprinkler at Promenade Hill: "Cool water returns to Promenade Hill, dry for decades." The article also provides an update on the partially completed mural on the retaining wall behind the sprinkler.
It seems the plan to ask the Common Council to pass a resolution permitting the mural and the Historic Preservation Commission to grant it a certificate of appropriateness has been abandoned. Now the mayor, who allegedly started out by ordering that the wall be pressure-washed, has had another change of heart. He now maintains that all that's required to sanction slapping paint on public property is an OK from the commissioner of public works. According to the Register-Star, he hasn't "reached out" to the commissioner yet but is confident he will "be in favor of the idea."
The commissioner of public works is James Folz, who has served in that position since 2007 but is rarely seen in Hudson. He doesn't live in Hudson, he doesn't work in Hudson, he doesn't attend Common Council Public Works Committee meetings. Folz was appointed in the summer of 2007 by Dick Tracy, after Michael O'Hara, who had been public works commissioner, was forced to resign after declaring his intention to run for mayor. Soon after Folz took the position, Mike Sassi, the well-qualified superintendent of public works who had been hired by O'Hara, resigned, raising a cloud of unanswered questions about what had precipitated his resignation. (To understand what was going on during this period, access the minutes of the Common Council for July 17, 2007. The relevant discussion begins on page 209 and continues to page 219.)
So, it's up to Folz to decide if a mural with "symbols of the different organizations that serve youth in our city, such as Operation Unite, the Youth Department, Promise Neighborhood and Staley B. Keith" should grace the entrance to Hudson's most historic park.
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