Wednesday, March 22, 2017

What Else Happened Last Night

The big news from last night's Common Council meeting was passing the resolution declaring Hudson to be a "welcoming and inclusive city," which essentially directs the Hudson Police Department to continue, in the current political climate, their established practice of not inquiring into the immigration status of crime victims, witnesses, or people who call or approach the police seeking assistance and not stopping, questioning, or detaining people solely on their actual or suspected immigration status. After the applause died down, and the people who had crowded into City Hall began filing out of the Council Chamber, the aldermen turned to the other business before them.

Of interest among the other issues was the resolution authorizing "the conveyance of real property and two utility easements to the Hudson City School District." The real property in question is 1.277 acres adjacent to Montgomery C. Smith Intermediate School, and the need for the property and the utility easements is related to the proposed addition to the building. According to the resolution, "the fair market value of the property has been determined to be $7,094.00," and the resolution authorizes giving the land to HCSD, and in exchange "the School District shall credit the City of Hudson the sum of $7,094.00, to be utilized to offset the present and future charges related to the City of Hudson Department of Youth's use of School District facilities."

Kelley Drahusuk of Spotty Dog
talking with HCSD students
earlier this month
The resolution passed, but with opposition from both Third Ward aldermen: John Friedman and Henry Haddad. Friedman said of the exchange, "They are stealing from us." Haddad similarly declared the transaction "real estate theft." Before casting their nay votes, both alderman made reference to their active support of HCSD. Both volunteer their time to the Hudson Reads Power Lunch program, and Friedman conceived of and continues to manage the Creative Approaches to Work luncheon, which gives HCSD high school students access to members of the community who have found successful careers through paths that vary from a "traditional collegiate trajectory."

Although the revised local law creating a lodging tax in Hudson was only placed on the aldermen's desks at the informal meeting on March 13, and Andy Howard, counsel to the Council, had advised that the law would have to "ripen" for ten days before the Council could vote to enact it, last night, the Council voted on it anyway, after only eight days. Mayor Tiffany Martin Hamilton has scheduled a public hearing on the law, before signing or vetoing it, for Tuesday, April 4, at 4:00 p.m. at City Hall.

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