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Dunedin charter amendments head to ballot
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DUNEDIN – Five proposed city charter amendments are expected to be placed on the ballot Nov. 7.

The City Commission’s adoption of the ordinances to place the items on the ballot of first reading stem from recommendations from the Charter Review Commission.

The ordinances are:

• Ordinance 17-23, proposing to amend the charter to state the selection of the vice mayor be done annually at the first regular meeting of the City Commission in December.

The current language states that the election of the vice mayor be conducted annually the first regular meeting of the City Commission following the regular election date prescribed by ordinance whether or not an election is held.

• Ordinance 17-24, proposing to amend the charter to state a special election be held within 180 days to fill a vacancy for the mayor or a commissioner if a regular election is not to be conducted within 360 days from the date of the vacancy.

The current language requires that the election will be held within 90 days of the date of the vacancy.

• Ordinance 17-25, proposing to amend the charter to provide that no less than 48 hours’ notice be given for special meetings.

The current language requires no less than 12 hours’ notice.

• Ordinance 17-26, proposing to rename a section to “Electors.”

The current title is “Elections.”

• Ordinance 17-27, proposing to provide a requirement for the City Commission to establish a code of ethics.

The current language says the City Commission may establish a code of ethics.

Commissioners to discuss parking plan

DUNEDIN – City commissioners tentatively plan to have their quarterly review of the city’s downtown pilot parking plan Thursday, Aug. 10.

The plan was implemented in October to offset the current costs of leased lots that the city pays for and to raise funds for a potential parking garage in the future.

Since then, commissioners have revised the plan after getting comments and complaints from residents and downtown merchants.

Commissioners are expected to decide in September whether they plan to continue the parking program.

Mayor, commission support renewable energy initiative

DUNEDIN – Mayor Julie Ward Bujalski on July 11 endorsed a goal of powering the city of Dunedin entirely with clean and renewable energy.

The Dunedin City Commission unanimously supported the mayor’s endorsement.

Bujalski joins a growing coalition of mayors for 100 percent clean energy who have similarly announced support for a goal of powering their communities with 100 percent renewable energy such as wind and solar.

“I am proud to support a vision of 100 percent clean and renewable energy for Dunedin,” said Bujalski in a news release. “This transition will protect the health of our residents from pollution, create new jobs in the growing clean energy industry, and lower the burden of high energy costs placed on businesses and consumers.”

Mayors for 100% Clean Energy, an initiative of the Sierra Club’s Ready for 100 Campaign, represents a growing number of mayors from across the country that have endorsed a community-wide goal of transitioning entirely to renewable energy.

“Cities can help lead the transition away from dirty fuels to renewable energy, but it will require boldness and ambition to get it done. I’m proud to stand with my fellow Mayors for 100% Clean Energy to call for a transition to 100 percent clean and renewable energy in my community,” Bujalski said.

Mayoral endorsements of 100 percent renewable energy have led to ambitious action in municipalities across the United States. The mayors of St. Petersburg and Abita Springs, Louisiana, issued proclamations endorsing a goal of transitioning to 100 percent clean and renewable energy, followed by the formal adoption of a city-wide goal establishing 100 percent clean energy as the target for city energy planning.

More than 25 U.S. cities have committed to transition entirely to clean and renewable energy.

For the full list of mayors for 100% Clean Energy and more information on the initiative, visit Mayor­s4Cle­anEne­rgy.o­rg.

Financial assistance available to organizations

DUNEDIN – Dunedin city commissioners will consider limited financial assistance for private organizations in the city’s upcoming fiscal year 2018 budget. To be eligible, organizations seeking funding must submit to the city of Dunedin Finance Department a letter fully describing:

• The amount of funding being requested and the reason(s) that level of funding is needed.

• The specific areas of community need addressed by the organization’s programs.

• The specific programming for and how exactly the funding is intended to be used (e.g. personnel, operating or capital costs).

• The performance criteria that will be measured and reported on to gauge the resulting value to the community.

• Organizations that received funding in fiscal year 2017 should note that documentation illustrating the degree to which the organization’s fiscal year 2017 public benefits and performance measures were achieved must be included as part of the application materials submitted.

A subcommittee established by the City Commission will review and rank the submissions received according to the type of service provided, the perceived economic or social benefit of the organization’s programs to Dunedin, the nature, cause and magnitude of the financial hardships the organization is contending with and the longevity and mutual benefit of any existing financial and partner relationships between your organization and the city.

If based on the final ranking the subcommittee recommends providing funding to an organization, its representatives will be asked to attend a commission work session Thursday, Aug. 22, to make a brief presentation – three minutes maximum – related to its funding request, and responding to questions the commission may have.
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