Controversy seems endemic in Hudson. When I moved here in 1993, Judy Meyer, who was, early on, my mentor in civic involvement, explained it as "something in the water."
Last night, a friend forwarded to me a letter that been sent to Warren Street business owners. Today, it was posted on at least two Facebook community pages. The letter begins: "It has recently been brought to our attention that the city's tourism board again wants to push a plan to have Warren Street shut down to all traffic and parking one weekend a month." The letter goes on to present all the reasons why this is a bad idea and concludes with a call to action:
This is of great urgency as we have just found out that they plan to vote on this at Monday's 6 p.m. meeting.
Unless they hear from a great many of us who make our opposition known, the Tourism Board may very well get this pushed through at Monday's meeting.
I strongly urge you to contact the mayor, all Council members, and the Council President immediately to make your feelings known.
Needless to say, I found the letter confusing and somewhat alarming. I had attended the meeting of the new Common Council Tourism & Events Committee on March 30 (the Tourism Board has been abolished) and posted about it. The big issue before the committee, and the one I posted about, was whether or not the concrete blocks were going to be brought back to allow restaurants to offer outdoor seating in the parking spaces in front of their establishments. If the committee decided to propose to the full Council that Warren Street be closed to traffic one weekend a month, I had either missed it, or it had been hashed out somewhere other than in a public meeting. Because Monday's meeting is the Council's informal meeting, at which nothing is or legally can be voted on, there is no likelihood that, even if there were truth to this information, any resolution regarding this would be voted on tomorrow night.
Wanting to confirm my own memory of the meeting and my understanding of the situation, I contacted Councilmember Ryan Wallace (Third Ward), who chairs the Tourism & Events Committee. He reminded me that someone at the meeting had mentioned there was a suggestion from community members that Warren Street might be closed down one or two days a month, but there had been no decision to pursue that suggestion, and nothing has been proposed to the full Common Council. It's probably just as well if people are contacting the councilmembers to express their opposition to shutting down the street. Regarding Warren Street Seasonal Usage (WSSU), Wallace told me, "Everything is on the table for consideration as alternatives to the concrete blocks, which many people have reached out to voice opinions on."