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Developers will pay for any council study sessions

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POSTED July 28, 2009 1:08 a.m.

LATHROP – During the real estate boom as recently as the beginning of Y2K, Lathrop City Council study sessions were held practically every other week to facilitate developments that were on the pipelines.

With the recent reversal of fortunes in the economy resulting in budget deficits across every level of government in the country, everyone is looking for ways to save money. The City of Lathrop is no exception.

The proposal currently on the table is for the council to meet for study sessions “once every two months.”

One of the topics scheduled for discussion in tonight’s special council meeting touches on the city’s money woes and how it relates to the frequency of these study sessions. In the item regarding the laying of ground rules for these study sessions, it states that due to the budget crunch, “It is understood that the study sessions shall not create additional work for staff unless authorized and funded.”

As a result, a set of rules are proposed with respect to the preparation and presentation of staff reports and handouts, and that developers must first set up and pre-fund billing accounts when they present referral items to the city for study session discussion. Furthermore, work assignments resulting from the study session will only begin after a billing account is set up and pre-funded.

Since the first-term election of Mayor Kristy Sayles, members of the development community and other concerned citizens have clamored for the return of the study sessions to promote better understanding of various projects being proposed thereby giving concerned individuals an opportunity to make comments and provide input on those proposed projects. It was also pointed out by concerned individuals in the community that study sessions foster better working relationships between the city and the development community.

Other items on the agenda in tonight’s meeting include discussions on the city’s wastewater capacity, updates on infrastructure projects, and discussion and possible action on funding sources.

The special meeting and study session is open to the public and will begin at 5 p.m. in the Council Chambers at City Hall, 390 Towne Centre Drive at Mossdale Landing.

To contact Rose Albano Risso, e-mail  HYPERLINK “” or call (209) 249-3536.

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