A2Council Meeting Summaries

Tag: Marijuana

Ann Arbor City Council: August 21, 2023

This Ann Arbor City Council meeting was held in person at City Hall. Members of the public can participate in public hearings and public comment either in person or via phone.

CM Song was absent

A2Council Update Video

Ann Arbor City Council Meeting Summary

APPROVED: $6,200,000 will be transferred from the Ann Arbor Housing Commission to the City’s General Fund, to purchase the City-owned property at 350 S. Fifth (the “Y Lot”). The City paid $5.2 million for this property in 2018. Staff confirmed that approximately $5 million is needed to relieve debt attached to it and the additional funds (~$1 million) from the Housing Commission would be used for “other initiatives.” (Legistar)

APPROVED: Eleven annexed parcels are added to the zoning map of the City of Ann Arbor. The parcels are located on Newport Road, Bird Road, and Victoria Circle and will be rezoned from TWP (Township) to R1D (Single-Family Dwelling district). City staff recommended R1A zoning, but Mayoral appointees on the Planning Commission recommended R1D. The R1D zoning is distinct from the surrounding R1A zoning but will allow increased opportunity for the properties to be divided for additional housing. (Legistar)

  • The distinction between R1A and R1D is explained in the Unified Development Code: “Application of the R1D and R1E district may require a greater degree of services than the less dense Single-Family Zoning Districts. To assure health, safety and welfare, any future R1D and R1E zoning areas should be contingent upon the availability or provision of adequate public services to serve the higher densities permitted by that district, in addition to other pertinent planning considerations.”
  • The minimum lot size for R1A is 20,000 sq. ft; the minimum lot size for R1D is 5,000 sq. ft.
  • The minimum front setback for R1A is 40 feet; the minimum front setback for R1D is 25 feet.
  • A chart with these and other differences between the two zoning districts (e.g. setbacks, lot width, etc) can be found in section 5.17.3 on page 80 of the “Unified Development Code Eighth Edition (February 26, 2023)” at this link: https://www.a2gov.org/departments/planning/Pages/Unified%20Development%20Code.aspx

APPROVED: The developer of 2060 Stadium is granted a PILOT (payment in lieu of taxes) for a project that includes 164 affordable housing units priced at or below 60% AMI. In lieu of taxes, the property owner will be assessed an annual service charge of $1 per housing unit for so long as the project maintains eligibility and the federally-aided mortgage loan remains unpaid. (Legistar)

APPROVED: An agreement between Ann Arbor and the City of Dearborn will allow the fire departments to borrow and lease vehicles between the municipalities. The agreement includes a plan for Ann Arbor to lease an ambulance from the City of Dearborn. (Legistar)

APPROVED: A resolution directs the City Administrator to ask for changes in the CLEMIS data management system. CLEMIS stands for Courts and Law Enforcement Management Information System. The system originated in Oakland County and is now used by other local law enforcement departments. CLEMIS is used for police reports, including explanation of how and why officers initiate contact with people. The resolution asks the City Administrator to request changes to the system, allowing officers to include more information. (Legistar)

APPROVED: The City will participate in prescription opioid litigation settlements with Walgreens. Ann Arbor is expected to receive an estimated $194,068.33. (Legistar)

APPROVED: By resolution, City Council urges the Michigan Legislature to outlaw flavored tobacco products and repeal current laws that restrict local units of government from regulating the sale and licensure of tobacco products for distribution. (Legistar)

APPROVED (first reading, due to substitution): A new ordinance will require sellers of certain residential housing units to disclose a “Home Energy Audit” prior to sale. Requirements do not apply to multi-story/multi-family housing, accessory dwelling units, mobile homes, or commercial buildings. Sellers will provide a Home Energy Score Report completed by a Home Energy Assessor (certified by the US Department of Energy). Included in an audit will be estimates of annual and monthly energy use and cost by fuel type, as well as comparative Home energy scores for similar dwellings. These seller disclosure requirements may be waived at the “sole discretion” of the Director of the Sustainability and Innovations department (Dr. Missy Stults). (Legistar)

  • The Office of Sustainability and Innovations (OSI) has explained “plans to hire a full-time home energy assessor to do free home energy assessments for residents” and that other firms “could be put under contract to offer additional help during high demand periods and [they are] working with those firms to hire additional capacity” with the “goal to get all homes in Ann Arbor scored using the Home Energy Score.”
  • This ordinance initially passed at “first reading” on August 7, 2023. At the suggestion of OSI staff, Council approved a substitute ordinance with a few changes:
    • “Listing Service” is now defined in the ordinance as the database tool used by realtors
    • Home Energy Score must be disclosed in “at least one” rather than all Real Estate Listings
    • Disclosure requirements that refer to “Real Estate Listing” and “Public Listing” no longer include a sign display
    • Noncompliance is determined at time of sale
    • Fines for noncompliance no longer compound daily
  • This substitution returned the ordinance to “first reading”. Another public hearing and vote for final approval at “second reading” is scheduled for September 5, 2023. A motion to postpone “first reading” to October 2, 2023 was defeated
  • https://www.mlive.com/news/ann-arbor/2023/08/realtors-oppose-new-ann-arbor-law-to-disclose-home-energy-ratings.html
  • https://www.mlive.com/news/ann-arbor/2023/08/as-realtors-push-back-ann-arbor-agrees-to-tweak-home-energy-disclosure-law.html

APPROVED (first reading): Two parcels at 2670 and 2690 Ann Arbor-Saline Road are proposed to be rezoned from Single-Family Dwelling district (R1C) to Office District (O). The house at 2670 was previously a rental home and is currently an office. The house at 2690 is currently nonconforming in its use as a personal storage unit. (Legistar)

APPROVED (first reading): An ordinance amendment will create a new class of “micro-business” under city regulation of Marijuana facilities. Currently, one category of micro-business is defined as a facility cultivating up to 150 plants and processing/packaging/selling them to individuals over the age of 21. The amendment will establish a second category of micro-business (“Class A”) that allows a facility to cultivate up to 300 plants, package marijuana, purchase marijuana concentrate or infused products from a processor, and sell them to individuals over the age of 21. The new Class A micro business will not be permitted to process marijuana. (Legistar)

  • The amendment also includes an expansion of allowable hours of operation. Currently, marijuana facilities may not operate after 9 p.m. or before 7 a.m. The amendment will permit operation until to 12 a.m. (midnight).
  • City staff response to agenda questions explains that “there has been interest among marijuana business owners to allow extended hours of operation.” Additional staff explanation refers to “discussions among Council Members.”
  • Factors that were considered include discussions among Council Members regarding the disparity between the closing hours of establishments in which liquor can be purchased or consumed (2:00 am) and marijuana dispensaries and consumption establishments (9:00 pm).”
  • Staff explained further: “AAPD had concerns about a potential 2:00 am closing time because of the amount of cash kept at dispensaries. AAPD recommended allowing marijuana establishments to remain open until 12:00 am for a trial period to see if there might be an uptick in crime during the extended hours, and to allow a later closing time if there are no issues with the 12:00 am closing time.
  • Link to Council Agenda Response Memo (8/17/23): https://a2gov.legistar.com/View.ashx?M=F&ID=12232317&GUID=DA3A6F00-BC22-48A1-A3A9-159A0C12B15F

A2ELNEL Voting Chart

Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for August 21, 2023 Part 1
Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for August 21, 2023 Part 2
Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for August 21, 2023 Part 3

Ann Arbor City Council: July 6, 2023

This Ann Arbor City Council meeting was held in person at City Hall. Members of the public can participate in public hearings and public comment either in person or via phone.

CM Disch was absent

A2Council Update Video

Ann Arbor City Council Meeting Summary

APPROVED: An Ordinance amendment to add Chapter 124 (Initiation of Traffic Stops) of Title IX (Police Regulations) of the Code of the City of Ann Arbor (Legistar)

APPROVED: The City ordinance for Solid Waste management will add a category – “Household Items” – that may be placed on the curb (public right of way) for up to 48 hours for the purpose of donation or re-use. (Legistar)

  • The ordinance cites examples of “Household Items” in good condition (suitable for re-use) that may be placed in the public right-of-way. Toxic, hazardous, construction, commercial, and demolition waste are specifically prohibited. The City reserves the right to remove any item that’s an interference to use or maintenance of the public right-of-way, a safety hazard, or otherwise not in compliance with the definitions for “Household Items.” In order to prevent illegal street parking or blockage of bike lanes, residents and property owners consent to the use of their driveways by anyone interested in viewing or taking an item. Within ten feet of a crosswalk or sidewalk/road intersection, household items may not exceed three feet in height.
  • https://www.mlive.com/news/ann-arbor/2023/06/putting-household-items-at-curb-for-others-to-take-no-longer-illegal-in-ann-arbor.html

APPROVED: An agreement to transfer all FY24 marijuana excise tax rebate funds – $1,375,000 – to the Ann Arbor Housing Commission and the Ann Arbor Housing Development Corporation. (Legistar)

  • On March 15, 2021, City Council unanimously approved a resolution directing that these Marijuana Excise Tax Funds be used for:
  • The agreement with the Ann Arbor Housing Commission/Ann Arbor Housing Development Corporation directs that these funds be used for:
    • $150,000 for planning, organizational development and design of the non-residential community space at 121 Catherine Street.
    • $325,000 for build out, furnishings, and equipment at 121 Catherine Street
    • $250,000 for eviction prevention
    • $250,000 for low-income youth services
    • $400,000 for case-management at tenant-based voucher households with a member involved in the carceral system

APPROVED: $4,613,300 construction contract with Cadillac Asphalt for street resurfacing, sidewalk gap filling, crosswalk improvements, storm inlet replacements, three mini-roundabouts, and widening to accommodate protected bike lanes at Earhart Road. (Legistar)

APPROVED: $150,000 Professional Services contract with Live Zero Waste ($75,000 per year for two years) for “various efforts” to promote the circular economy. This item includes Council authorization for administrative one-year extension. (Legistar)

APPROVED: $135,000 Professional Services contract with VegMichigan ($45,000 per year for 3 years) for “various efforts” to promote plant-forward diets. This item includes Council authorization for 2 one-year administrative extensions. (Legistar)

APPROVED: $225,000 Professional Services contract with Community Action Network ($75,000 per year for three years) to “support and advance” the Bryant Neighborhood Decarbonization Project. This item includes Council authorization for 2 one-year administrative extensions. (Legistar)

  • Sustained community engagement education
  • Identification of strategies for scaling Bryant work to other neighborhoods
  • Support initiating decarbonization efforts in other neighborhoods
  • Storytelling support
  • On demand support to continue growing the work in Bryant and beyond

APPROVED: $225,000 Professional Services contract with 2030 District ($75,000 per year for three years) to develop programs to support commercial decarbonization. This item includes Council authorization for 2 one-year administrative extensions. (Legistar)

  • Energy benchmarking assistance
  • Commercial energy saving assistance
  • Conduct energy education and engagement with commercial entities
  • Reporting and accountability
  • On demand support related to commercial decarbonization

APPROVED: A cost-sharing agreement with the Downtown Development Authority to conduct a Downtown Area Circulation Study. The total cost of the study is $577,613. The City contribution is $209,674. (Legistar)

APPROVED: $4,750,000 is allocated toward speed management, quick builds, and near-miss evaluation to advance the City’s Vision Zero transportation safety initiatives. Funding comes from a federal grant of $3,800,000 through the Federal Highway Administration’s Safe Streets and Roads for All (SS4A) program. The City will provide matching funds of $950,000 out of proceeds from the Climate Action Millage. The grant requires that work happen in the next four years. (Legistar)

APPROVED: $800,000 will purchase a new custom pumper fire truck with idle reduction technology and up to three hours of operation from lithium-ion batteries. The City’s oldest pumper fire truck (from 2005) will be sold at auction. (Legistar)

A2ELNEL Voting Chart

Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for July 6, 2023 Part 1
Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for July 6, 2023 Part 2
Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for July 6, 2023 Part 3

Ann Arbor City Planning Commission: September 20, 2022

This meeting was held in person at City Hall.

Commissioner Abrons was absent.
Commissioner Hammerschmidt was absent.

APPROVED: Special Exception Use petition for Religious Assembly use at 529 Detroit, which includes 525 and 521 Detroit Street. Petitioners were granted a Landscape Modification for relief from the conflicting land use buffer requirement along the northeast property line.

APPROVED: Special Exception Use and Site Plan (Designated Marijuana Consumption Facility) for 3860 Research Park Drive.

APPROVED: Recommendation that City Council approved annexation of parcels at 1855 N Maple Road, 1875 N Maple Road, and 1921 Calvin Street and zoning of a PUD for construction of a 79-unit apartment community with a single-story clubhouse.

Legistar and Video Links

Legistar: https://a2gov.legistar.com/MeetingDetail.aspx?ID=954620&GUID=1EFE12E6-D5EF-4ABE-9AE3-190887C73991

YouTube: https://youtu.be/gOaRE4HLg8U

CTN Video: https://ctnvideo.a2gov.org/CablecastPublicSite/show/7438

Meeting Length: 2h 37m

Ann Arbor City Council: August 15, 2022

This Ann Arbor City Council meeting was held in person at City Hall. Members of the public can participate in public hearings and public comment either in person or via phone.

Ann Arbor City Council Meeting Summary

APPROVED: Three amendments to the Uniform Development Code (UDC): (Legistar)

  • A limitation on the number of State marijuana licenses per lot is removed, so that several licenses can be ‘stacked’ on the same parcel. Other restrictions – zoning district permitted use regulations, physical separation distances, and the maximum cap for provisioning center/retailers and designated consumption facilities – remain in effect. Added at the 7/18/22 Council meeting: an amendment to the requirement that all activities occur indoors will allow curbside service at marijuana provisioning centers, retailers, and microbusinesses.
  • New site plans include requirements and procedures for installing street trees in the right-of-way. Changes to linear frontage calculation will prevent overcrowding of trees. Escrow deposit and refund related to these tree plantings are eliminated.
  • For site plans, modification to landscape requirements is permitted under certain conditions. This amendment adds an eligibility requirement and re-organizes modification conditions, standards of approval, and approval procedures.
  • The Planning Commission approved these changes at the March 15, 2022 meeting: https://a2council.com/ann-arbor-city-planning-commission-march-15-2022

APPROVED: Amendments to the UDC changing parking requirements. Parking requirements are eliminated for residential dwellings, adult day care centers, child care centers, and outdoor residential recreation facilities. Eliminated: requirements for off-street parking spaces for residential units located more than 300 feet from a bus stop and in areas with limited street parking. Also eliminated: any requirements for a “Parking Plan” of proposed off-street parking and an analysis of public parking and transit facilities in the vicinity. Parking maximums are established for the Transit Corridor (TC-1) zoning district. Requirements for Electric Vehicle (EV) ready and installed parking are amended to only apply to newly constructed parking. (Legistar)

APPROVED: $4,577,354.95 contract for application of cape sealing pavement preservation treatment on 10 major streets and 38 minor/local streets. citywide crack sealing of approximately 10 miles of major streets and 25 miles of minor/local streets. (Legistar)

APPROVED: $639,726 construction contract (with $64,000 contingency) for filling sidewalk gaps on Ellsworth Road between State and Stone School. (Legistar)

APPROVED: A total of $2,045,700 in construction contracts for the resurfacing Scio Church Road between South Maple Road and South Seventh Street, filling sidewalk gaps on the north side of the road, installing three (3) new crosswalks, converting on-street parking into bike lanes, and adding stormwater infiltration. (Legistar)

APPROVED: $698,808.92 construction contract for pavement marking maintenance and A2 Vision Zero Quick Build Projects. (Legistar)

APPROVED: $121,978 contract for redesign of the City’s website. (Legistar)

APPROVED: $853,211 contract with the Ecology Center to provide Resource Recovery Education, Outreach, Engagement, and Marketing for five years. (Legistar)

APPROVED: For the purpose of running a gas line, the City will grant two easements to DTE Gas Company: 1) across the north end of Siller Terrace (south of Virginia Park) and 2) on the south side of Dexter Avenue near the intersection at N. Maple (northwest corner of Veterans Park). (Legistar)

APPROVED: The City Administrator is authorized to execute a letter to the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) in support of noise abatement and an environmental impact study of noise on M-14 from Maple Road to Main Street. (Legistar)

APPROVED: The annual meeting between the City Council and members of the Downtown Development Authority will be cancelled for 2022. Cancellation of this meeting is a deviation from the parking agreement that requires these annual meetings. (Legistar)

APPROVED: The City will pay $24,500 to Deborah Gordon-Gurfinkel and Elihau Gurfinkel. This payment will settle a claim related to injuries caused by a trip and fall on a pothole on Sunset Road. The injury occurred in August 2020 when Sunset Road was designated as a “Healthy Street.” (Legistar)

TABLED: A resolution from the Renters Commission urges City Council to adopt an ordinance creating a Right to Renew for renters in Ann Arbor. This resolution was tabled at the request of the City Attorney’s office. A draft ordinance (attached to the resolution) grants tenants a Right to Renew a lease, subject to specific exceptions (“just cause” for eviction). Landlords would adhere to a timeline for communicating terms of renewal (or explanation of non-renewal) consistent with the Early Leasing Ordinance: tenants will receive a good faith offer to renew (or notice of non-renewal with explanation) no later than 180 days before the end of the current lease period. A tenant will have thirty days (up to 150 days before the end of the current lease) to accept/reject terms of renewal. A landlord’s failure to comply will result in payment of relocation assistance to the tenant. (Legistar)

A2ELNEL Voting Chart

Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for August 15, 2022 Part 1
Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for August 15, 2022 Part 2
Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for August 15, 2022 Part 3
Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for August 15, 2022 Part 4

Ann Arbor City Council: March 15, 2021

This was the twenty fourth regular Ann Arbor City Council meeting since Governor Whitmer declared a state of emergency and stay-at-home order due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This meeting was held online via the Zoom application.

APPROVED: Beginning April 1 (through August 30), downtown street closures will be permitted so that restaurants and retail businesses adjacent or near to the closed streets are able to use the street for seating and sales. It will happen on the weekends (4 PM Thursday through 6 AM Monday) at the locations below: (Legistar)

APPROVED: Contract for $65,800 for OHM Advisors, Inc. to perform pavement condition rating services. Every two years, the city’s paved street system is assessed and rated with statistical reports. This contract will run through 2025. (Legistar)

APPROVED: Contract for $1,393,088.95 with Bailey Excavating to replace water mains at Dunmore, Waverly, Weldon, and Hartford. (Legistar)

  • NOTE: This agenda item was a substitute for the staff-recommended contract with DiPonio Contracting for the same job at a cost of $1,311,467. (Legistar)

APPROVED: A site plan for construction of a one-story 24,529-square foot retail building with 81 parking spaces at 300 South Maple (where The Quarter was previously located). Lewis Jewelers will be one of multiple tenants. The development includes construction of a pedestrian connection (sidewalk) to Westgate Shopping Center. (Legistar)

APPROVED: March 31 will be recognized on an annual basis as Transgender Day of Visibility by flying a transgender pride flag at City Hall, evaluating non-discrimination laws and policies, and reaffirming support and commitment to a diverse, equitable and welcoming community. (Legistar)

APPROVED: A “Fair Chance” ordinance was approved at “first reading.” The ordinance will prohibit landlords from using criminal history as a determining factor in access to rental housing. An application for rental housing shall not require an applicant to disclose criminal history or authorize release of criminal history. (Legistar)

APPROVED: The city administrator will receive and track revenue from Marijuana Excise Tax so that those funds can be directed in a way that “intentionally reinvests in our community, acknowledges the past harm of criminalization, and supports populations disproportionately and negatively impacted by the ‘War on Drugs’.” (Legistar)

A2ELNEL Voting Chart

Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for March 15, 2021 Part 1
Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for March 15, 2021 Part 2
Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for March 15, 2021 Part 3
Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for March 15, 2021 Part 4

Ann Arbor City Council: October 7, 2019

This Ann Arbor City Council meeting was held in person at City Hall.

Ann Arbor City Council Meeting Summary

APPROVED: City permits for recreational marijuana businesses (Legistar)

APPROVED: Regulation of recreational marijuana facilities (Legistar)

APPROVED: PUD changes to height, parking for “The Glen” (201, 213, 215, 271 Glen Ave & 1025 E Ann St) (Legistar) + site plan approved (Legistar)

  • ​162-room hotel, 24 apartments, a restaurant, and 5,181 square feet of retail

DEFEATED: Rezone R1E to PUD 2857 Packard Road (Legistar) + site plan (Legistar)

APPROVED: $259,086 to purchase Police Vehicles from Signature Ford (Legistar)

  • ​$18,690.00 from Sustainability & Innovations budget to subsidize the purchase of six hybrid vehicles for use by the Ann Arbor Police Department

APPROVED: $130,000 for proposed Fuller Court and Nixon/Traver Sidewalk Gap Project (Legistar)

APPROVED:  $53,900 for ramp and sidewalk repair for vaulted or displaced joints in sidewalks (Legistar)

APPROVED Review of City Transportation Planning and Operations Management and Related Staffing (Legistar)

A2ELNEL: Elections Have Consequences

A2ELNEL Voting Chart

Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for October 7, 2019 Part 1
Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for October 7, 2019 Part 2
Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for October 7, 2019 Part 3
Ann Arbor City Council Voting Chart for October 7, 2019 Part 4

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My name is Elizabeth Nelson, and I believe that your local government should be accessible and transparent. Since 2018 , I have sent out a newsletter before every Council meeting with my summary of agenda items coming before City Council, plus news and events of interest to Ann Arbor residents.

After each Council meeting, I create and post voting charts so that you can easily see how Council voted, and update this website with meeting summaries that include links to the City’s Legistar website, CTN’s YouTube video, and articles published on MLive.