Council preview: Lighner Center back, NCSU police could get broader powers

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Read the full agenda below.

The Raleigh City Council’s agenda for next week is a short one, but councilors once again will tackle the ongoing debate over the proposed public safety center for downtown.

Mayor Charles Meeker, the center’s most outspoken proponent on council, has modified the proposal for the $140-million Clarence E. Lightner Public Safety Center. Meeker dropped several other capital projects from the budget recently and modified the proposal to require less of a tax increase.

Council members have been negotiating over the new public safety center since late last year. City Manager Russ Allen and the mayor have been pushing to move ahead with the proposal, while half of the council has said the building costs too much during the recession.

Bonner Gaylord (District E), Russ Stephenson (at-large) and Thomas Crowder (District D) argued strongly at the last meeting to scrap the plan and renovate existing buildings.

Council has not been able to get to a vote on the plans since December.

Honeycutt Park Greenway

City council’s public works committee says the Honeycutt Park Greenway should go ahead as proposed. At its regular meeting last week, the committee heard comments from almost a dozen people unhappy with the proposed route.

The people concerned with the route did not want it going through the Summerfield North neighborhood.

Stephenson and Gaylord voted to approve the route, District B’s John Odom voted against.

The committee did make one change to the plan. Members asked to have a full crosswalk installed at a crossing on Strickland Road instead of just a pedestrian warning light.

From the consent agenda:

Items on the consent agenda can be passed with one motion or pulled for debate and a separate vote.

NCSU cops get more powers

N.C. State University’s police officers could get new powers though an agreement with the Raleigh Police Department up for approval by city council this week.

If approved, NCSU police would have jurisdiction on the streets around campus and some off campus housing. Officers will also be able to make arrests across the city if they see a crime being committed.

Currently, the department can only work off campus when it gets a request from the Raleigh Police Department or the Wake County Sheriff’s Department.

Read the resolution and see a better map below.

Public arts

Members of the Public Art and Design Board want to dedicate $103,000 for art at the new Buffaloe Road Aquatic Center and the Halifax Park and Community Center. This is part of a city program that says new municipal buildings should use a half percent of their budget for public art at the sites.

The funding would come from the 2007 Parks and Recreation Bond. The board proposes giving $71,500 to the Buffalow Road pool and $32,100 for Halifax Park.

In it’s memo to council, the board says it hopes for approval this week so it can hire artists to start working.

City Council Agenda March 2 2010


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