Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Monday, September 29, 2008
Saturday, September 27, 2008
In today's story, Mr. Prinkle is quoted as saying, "it cost us (SME) millions and millions of dollars because of that delay".
I have a few questions:
1. How much of the city's money went down the tubes over this loss?
2. Did SME report this "millions and millions dollars of loss" to its members, which includes the city? If so, when did they divulge it?
3. And if this loss was reported, did the executive director of ECP, Coleen Balzarini, report it to the ECP board? Oops, that's right. She wouldn't have, because I'm sure SME classified this as being confidential information. And we certainly have learned who controls the flow of information.
It comes as no surprise that Gregori's rhetoric continues. In today's article, he says "that SME is close to securing financing for the first phase of Highwood Generating Station and we continue to make good progress on total project financing".
Of course, he wouldn't say who is dumb enough to back such a loss cause. That's confidential, don't ya know.
Friday, September 26, 2008
Thursday, September 25, 2008
When: 7:00pm tonight
Where: Missouri room at the Civic Center
Quick facts about the Arterial (taken from the GF Tribune):
The South Arterial is expected to feature:
* At-grade intersections at Fox Farm Road, Upper River Road, 13th Street South, and 26th Street South.
* Use of Gibson Flats Road alignment east of 13th Street South.
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Monday, September 22, 2008
by: John Keats
Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
The chair of Council 4, Sandra Guynn, extends a special invitation to everyone to hear the presentation about gangs in Great Falls. The program will be the first item of business.
Thursday, September 18, 2008
According to this article in the Tribune, the city will still lose money ($19,500) even if the fees are increased. Here are the numbers:
Currently - .25/hour (since 1981)
Proposed increase - .50/hour
Fiscal impact: An additional $168,000 which would go into the city parking program
Currently: $3.00 (since 1987)
Proposed increase: $5.00
Fiscal impact: An additional $40,300 which would go into the city's general fund to help cover core costs, such as police, fire and public works.
What do think? Will increasing the fees be a detriment to downtown? Share your ideas/thoughts and vote in my very unofficial poll.
Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Friends;I just bought a bag of groceries at Everyday IGA (7th street and 1st Ave. North). The store is clean and well stocked, and everyone there is friendly. Please go show your support and shop there today!Yours,Aaron
She said that according to one current member of the board and at least one city staffer, the board was initially established to help the city in its endeavors to fund its 25% share of the coal plant. She indicated that the board has never discussed what is best for Great Falls and is sorry the city ever got involved with [Tim] Gregori.
She reminded everyone that the ECP board is advisory only and that it is up to the Commission to set electric rates.
While the other commissioners didn't go so far as to agree with disbandment, they did say there should be a review of the board's structure, sometime in the future, with input from the current as well as just seated members.
What I found interesting was that of the three recommendations given by the ECP board, only one was considered by the commission, that of John Gilbert.
Am I being too optimistic to think that maybe this means the Commission is starting to break out of the "rubber stamp" mode they have been in for years?
No matter how much we argue about the details of its meaning today, in the opinion of many, the Constitution signed in Philadelphia on September 17, 1787 represents the greatest expression of statesmanship and compromise ever written. In just four hand-written pages, the Constitution gives us no less than the owners' manual to the greatest form of government the world has ever known.
To learn more about the Constitution and Bill of Rights, visit here.
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Thanks to Aaron Weissman, chair of NC#7 for sharing this information:
Please find attached a memorandum from our City Manager and from FWP regarding nuisance animals in the city limits. The position of the city and FWP is clear; neither will assist Great Falls residents in dealing with small nuisance animals, both predatory and non-predatory. However, FWP will assist in removing large predatory animals such as lion and bear.
Monday, September 15, 2008
Saturday, September 13, 2008
Lee Ebeling (application received too late)
John R. Gilbert
Keith Thomas Melhus
Gale E. Rand
Olaf M. Stimac, Jr.
Michael M. Witsoe
The ECP board recommends:
Friday, September 12, 2008
GREAT FALLS CITIZENS COUNCIL
Council of Councils Meeting
When: Wednesday, September 17, 2008
Where: Commission Chambers—Civic Center—7:00 p.m.
Please note: The Great Falls Citizens Council agenda format allows citizens to speak on each issue prior to Council discussion. We encourage your participation. In the interest that all parties can be heard, please limit your comments.
CALL TO ORDER—Chairperson Phyllis Hemstad—Neighborhood Council #2
1. Approval of minutes from the last meeting
2. Park letter to Commissioners
3. Vehicle/RV/Trailer parking on city streets
1. Public Safety presentations—Fire Chief McCamley & Police Chief Grove
1. Council information sharing
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
According to a CCE supporter present at last night's meeting, here is a quick and dirty (no pun intended) update:
- Names were discussed for the City Commission to consider for the ECP board replacements.
- CCE will apparently not get their information request on the Highwood cost spreadsheet. They call it 'coal', but SME calls it wind/gas estimates.
- Tribune reporter, Karl Puckett, didn't stay for the entire meeting so CCE will fill in the gaps. (They have taped it).
According to an article in today's Tribune, SME is planning to break ground this fall. They purchased the property in late August and according to Tim Gregori, "you can't build on property you don't own. We own the site, and we intend to build on that site."
What I enjoyed reading was Tim Gregori's acknowledgement that Highwood faces "significant challenges". Unless my memory has failed me or I missed some articles, I don't ever remember Gregori admitting this project has been anything but a done deal.
Monday, September 8, 2008
If anyone is going to attend this meeting, feel free to e-mail me with the details to post.
Electric City Power, Incorporated. Regular Meeting of the Board of Directors September 8, 2008, 5:30 p.m. Commission Chambers - Great Falls Civic Center
BOARD MEMBER REPORTS
NEXT BOARD MEETING
Saturday, September 6, 2008
Monday, September 8, 2008
Longfellow School library
Please note: This agenda format allows citizens to speak on each issue prior to Council discussion. We encourage your participation. In the interest that all parties can be heard, please limit your comments.
CALL TO ORDER
Northside Neighborhood Watch
Approval of August minutes
Downtown Grocery Store
Gibson Park Lighting
Weed and Seed Project
2nd Avenue North construction update
Other Old Business
Disorderly Premise Ordiance
Wild Animal Control
Police Advisory Board
Council of Councils meeting—Wednesday, September 17 at 7:00 p.m. in the Commission Chambers
Next meeting October 13, 2008—Community Rec Center, 801 2nd Avenue North
Friday, September 5, 2008
Gregg has good posts here and here about the latest stunt pulled by certain folks at the city to try to get out of doing their jobs and denying citizens their rights.
The city's risk manager has written a letter to the Montana Municipal Insurance Authority asking for "guidance and suggestions" on how to handle the requests for public information.
File uploaded by Gregg Smith
The letter mentions that instead of the issues of ECP and SME dying down, they are turning into an "inferno". You've got to be kidding. There's no way they can honestly be surprised by this.
Given the ongoing attitude of the city, I'm not surprised that someone thought a letter of this magnitude was necessary. My real concern is if the city manager was aware of this letter before it was sent (assuming it was), and if so, did he approve it. The letter is dated August 19, 2008 and according to the date stamp, his office received it on that date.
The first annual Crime Prevention Day is scheduled for October 4th from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Family Living Center located in the Montana ExpoPark (Fairgrounds).
Informational booths will also be available. Seating is limited so guarantee your seat by calling Mac at 454-6987 to get your advance ticket.
Here is the agenda:
10 a.m. Gang Brief from GFPD
NOON - Lunch of sloppy joes and other fixings
1 p.m. Drug Awareness Brief from GFPD
Don "Mac" McGiboney
Citizen Corps Volunteer Coordinator
PO Box 2486
Great Falls, MT 59403-2486
Thursday, September 4, 2008
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
But he did leave out an important decision the commissioners made.
They decided to rescind the Animal Shelter Committee ordinance.
To recap, this committee was to be comprised of two members recommended by the Animal Foundation, two recommended by the Humane Society and three from sitting Neighborhood Council members. On June 6, Commissioner Bronson was very much in favor of getting this committee up and running:
"My concern is that if we wait too long to get the Committee up and running, we may lose some time in getting the entire animal control/enforcement/shelter operations issues resolved".
Well, it didn't happen. In fact, for two months we heard nothing. It wasn't until about August 8 that a concerned citizen brought it up again.
Now, a month later, we have the Animal Foundation, albeit in a nice way (there was humor in their presentation), putting the city in the hot seat. According to conversations they had with former city manager, John Lawton, the city was always going to be in partnership with them with regard to the shelter. (No monies were set aside in the 2008-2009 budget for this, simply because there is no $1.5 million, which evidently is the amount the Foundation was told it would receive from the city). They indicated last night that partial funding is not an option, because expenses keep increasing.
Commissioner Rosenbaum suggested a "construction" committee be appointed to get going on this deal. He just kind of appointed himself and a few others who were mentioned in the Trib's article. (I guess these types of decisions don't require a vote, because none was taken. In fact, I don't recall that he asked for anybody else's opinion about who should sit on this committee). He also "predicted the committee could finish its work in less than a month".
I can hardly wait.
Monday, September 1, 2008
Bob James of the Animal Foundation will be giving an update on that organization and City Manger, Greg Doyon, will be giving a virtual tour of the animal shelters in Bozeman, Billings and Missoula.
I wonder if we'll hear more about what the future will be for the Animal Shelter Committee?