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Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Newsletter about the City Council meeting of November 5, 2013

I began recording the City Council late last year, because of my desire that the City do it on their own as any modern 21st century community began doing long ago. I had people tell me that they couldn't make it to the meetings, but they would like to see what is going on. I was also told by some council members that my summaries did not truly reflect the record, so having a video/audio recording cannot be misinterpreted.

So below is the City Council meeting. Beside each agenda item, you will see the minute:second. Now you can click on that minute link and it will take you to that specific point in the meeting. You can drag the marker on the video display to the point in the broadcast that you are interested in seeing.

Agenda about the City Council meeting of November 5, 2013

Highlighted Links below take you straight to that point in the video.

Invocation by Rev. Paul Birkedal, Chaplain, Catawba Valley Regional Hospice

Alderman Meisner not present.

Special Presentations
Mayor Wright recognized St. Stephens High School Civic Students and asked them to  introduce themselves.

A. Presentation of Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week Proclamation 

Persons Requesting to be Heard
Former Mayor Bill McDonald commented that this was the first time that he had the opportunity to be back in Council Chambers in two decades. He shared a story with the young people that were attending the Council meeting. When he was Mayor the Scouts would come to Council meetings working on their civic merit badge. He asked one of the scouts after a Council meeting if he enjoyed the meeting, and was it educational. The scout replied he would rather be doing his homework.

Mr. McDonald stated a number of weeks ago, he and his wife Susan had come to visit her mother. He read the Hickory Daily Record one morning, and on the front page of the newspaper were two articles challenging two members of Council, Alderwoman Patton and Alderwoman Fox, on some impropriety; which turned out to be absolutely false. In the article on Alderwoman Fox, there were mentioned some of the activities that she had been involved in. Mr. McDonald stated 20 years of service, to anything, is unbelievable. Twenty years of service without absenteeism is even more phenomenal. He stated that he had served with Alderwoman Fox. He was told when he was elected Mayor that the first order of business of any Mayor is that he or she should be building consensus among Council. That they could agree to disagree in a sane civilized manner. He commented that came from some very wise people that had served our city for a number of years. He and Alderwoman Fox, over twenty years, did not agree on everything that she brought to the table, but she was very committed and did her homework before she brought something to Council. The citizens of our city need to know the many wonderful things that Alderwoman Fox did bring to the Council table that were adopted, that made this a better place to live. He personally thanked Alderwoman Fox, and he commented that he hoped that the news media would pick up on the fact that 20 years of service is significant, and all of the contributions that she brought to the table. What a wonderful town this is because of people like Alderwoman Fox who are committed to the betterment of our Community. The audience gave a standing ovation for Alderwoman Fox.

Mayor Wright commented that he was very proud that Bill and Susan had chosen to come back to Hickory, and that he is pleased that they have been appointed to a key committee of our citizens.

Mr. Cliff Moone, 
Hickory stated that for the past several years he had approached City Council at the request of the Human Rights Coalition of North Carolina, to request that a proclamation be issued by Council to commemorate Bill of Rights Day on December 15. Mayor Wright and Council have been gracious enough to do that proclamation every year for the last few years and it is greatly appreciated. This year in addition to asking Council to issue the proclamation for Bill of Rights Day, he encouraged Council and requested that they issue a proclamation honoring Human Rights Week, December 10-16, 2013. Last year the Governor and the Mayors of Asheville, Black Mountain, Cary, Charlotte, Durham, Forest City, Garner, Greensboro, Hillsborough, Knightdale, Lewisburg, Marion, Raleigh, Reidsville, Selma and Zebulon also did so. Mr. Moone distributed a copy of the articles of the Universal Declaration ofHuman Rights to Council, and stated that it was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly and supported there by the United States on December 10, 1948. The declaration arose directly from the experience of World War II, and represents the first global expression of rights to which all people were inherently entitled. He requested the declaration of the 30 articles contained within the document he had distributed.

Mr. Moone respectfully requested that, if appropriate, that this years proclamation for Bill of Rights Day, be issued in honor of retiring Alderwoman Sally Fox, in recognition of her years of active civic involvement and faithful service to our community, and for her many contributions to the betterment of Hickory as Ward 5 representative on City Council. 

Consent Agenda: Unanimously approved

New Business - Public Hearings
1. Voluntary Contiguous Annexation of Property Located at 1879 Startown Road, Hickory, Containing .83 Acres. Cal Overby Presentation. Council unanimous Consent.

New Business - Departmental Reports:
1. Acceptance of Offers to Purchase and Contract for Properties Located at 1742, 1743, and 1746 Whitewater Court, in the Waterford Hills Subdivision.

Matter not on the Agenda: 
Paperwork Process for Assistance from FEMA for the damage caused by the flood damage in Hickory that occurred on July 27, 2013. Damage in Hickory is estimated to be $2.8 million. 75% would be paid for by FEMA and 25% by the State. Contact person for FEMA will be Chuck Hanson, the city's chief engineer.

General Comments 

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