Archive for Thursday, August 10, 2006

Council’s newest member takes seat

August 10, 2006, 12:00 a.m.

Updated: 12:00 a.m.

Janette Labbee-Holdeman is the newest member of the Lansing City Council.

Labbee-Holdeman was elected, in a 5-2 vote, to fill Robert Ulin's unexpired term as a Ward 3 council member. The vote came during the council's Aug. 3 meeting.

The longtime Lansing resident, who was sworn in that evening, said she had no expectations going into the council meeting but was looking forward to her participation in meetings to come.

"I really hadn't talked to anyone, so I really didn't know," Labbee-Holdeman said. "I'm pretty excited."

A motion to appoint Ron Jacobson to the seat was defeated 3-4 before the council voted 5-2 to appoint Labbee-Holdeman in a separate motion. Ward 1 Council member Dee Hininger voted in favor of both motions. Council members Andi Pawlowski, Billy Blackwell, Kenneth Ketchum and Harland Russell voted against the motion to appoint Jacobson; Council members Don Studnicka and Dave Trinkle Jr. voted against the motion to appoint Labbee-Holdeman.

Jacobson said he expected council members would be split, but said he also arrived with few expectations.

"I really thought that it would be pretty close, and it was indeed close," he said.

Jacobson said he was glad the seat went to someone worthy.

"I'm not upset that I didn't get it," he said. "I know that a very capable person did get it.

"That's why I'm not as disappointed as I could be."

Several council members expressed their thanks to both Labbee-Holdeman and Jacobson for showing interest in the seat, and expressed hope that Jacobson's name would be on the ballot in April, when the term for the seat expires.

Labbee-Holdeman agreed.

"I think that Ron Jacobson would have been a great candidate too," Labbee-Holdeman said. "Maybe we'll have a runoff in April."

Jacobson couldn't say for sure whether he would run for a seat in the next election, but did say he'd keep his options open.

"You never know what's going to happen," Jacobson said. "You get to be my age and you learn never to say never."

In other action, the council:

¢ Approved, 7-0, minutes from the July 6 regular and July 13 special meetings.

¢ Conducted the 2007 Community Development Block Grant public hearing.

¢ Heard a presentation designating the city's Employee of the Third Quarter, Parks and Recreation Director Jason Crum.

¢ Heard a presentation by Laura Phillippi, who presented a Certificate of Appreciation to Elizabeth Studnicka, a Lansing student at the University of Missouri who donated time this summer to assist with a project at Lansing Historical Museum.

¢ Heard an update on the Main Street System Enhancement project.

¢ Approved, 5-2, with Council members Dee Hininger and Andi Pawlowski, opposed adding $10,000 in funding for St. Vincent Clinic to the Proposed 2007 annual program of services.

¢ Approved, 7-0, the Proposed 2007 Annual Program of Services.

¢ Approved, 7-0, an ordinance allowing the city to increase tax revenues for 2007 budget year.

¢ Approved, 7-0, the Treasurer's Report for the quarter ending June 30.

¢ Approved, 7-0, an ordinance that levies sewer and trash disposal assessments on delinquent account holders.

¢ Approved, 5-2, with Council members Ketchum and Trinkle opposed, designating The Lansing Current as the official city newspaper.

¢ Approved, 6-0, with Council member Dee Hininger abstaining, appointing Hininger to the city's Parks & Recreation Advisory Board.

¢ Approved, 6-0, with Council member Andi Pawlowski abstaining, appointing Pawlowski to the city's Economic Development Committee.

¢ Approved, 7-0, a resolution to create a sewer improvement district for Lot 1, Block 3 Conway Estates.

¢ Approved, 7-0, a resolution authorizing the sale and conveyance of land to Hotel Lansing L.L.C.

¢ Approved, 7-0, a resolution to award a contract to D.F. Freeman and commit city funds to a joint city-state project to reconstruct East Eisenhower Road.

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