DDA Minutes August 25, 2020

Minutes – August 25, 2020

MEMBERS: Mr. Brian Barnard, Chair; Mr. Jonathan Eady, Ms. Danielle Miller, Mr. Art Vinson, Mr. Ray Wilson, and Mr. Mike Ready.

STAFF: Matthew Pepper, City Manager and DDA Secretary/Treasurer; Melissa Pratt, Associate Clerk.

GUESTS: Ms. Barbara Cole.

OPENING: At 7:04 PM, Mr. Barnard called the meeting to order.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES: Upon motion of Mr. Eady, seconded by Mr. Vinson, the minutes for the meeting on July 28, 2020 were approved. The vote was 6 – 0.

LANDSCAPE MAINTENANCE ON THE E. CLARK STREET LOTS: The DDA discussed the request by the Mayor and City Council that they implement a long-term landscape maintenance plan for the two lots located along E. Clark Street. The DDA owns both lots. To maintain the lots, the DDA discussed the possibility of either entering into an intergovernmental agreement with the city or hiring a third-party landscape service. The DDA decided to solicit bids for landscape maintenance services for the care of the two lots.

THE YARBROUGH HOUSE PROPERTY: The DDA discussed that the potential uses of the Yarbrough House Property (107 W. Clark Street) depend on both the long- and short-term goals for the town center development. In the context of the town center development, the DDA discussed that the existing house could either be moved to another location, removed, or incorporated into the overall development. In addition, the DDA agreed that any future conversations regarding the use of the existing house should take into consideration the amount of funds the city is willing and able to invest. The DDA further discussed that the level of financial investment needed to renovate the house for public use would exceed the value it would provide to the community.

In addition, the DDA expressed concerns with renovating the existing house for public use given its location and design. They also stated that the proper use would largely be determined on how the house is incorporated into the overall town center development. Since the city has implemented tight budget restrictions and development on the town center has stalled, the DDA agreed that the house can remain unused for 1-2 years without enduring significant deterioration. As development resumes on the town center, the DDA will develop ideas on how to best incorporate the property. The DDA will prepare a formal recommendation to the Mayor and City Council expressing these views.  

THE FARMER’S MARKET: During the discussion, the DDA recommended that the city consider installing a sign and small fence as a low-cost option to help create a space for the market. The DDA concluded that the sign and fencing could contribute to creating a vibrant farmer’s market. As the market grows, it will also help create a sense of place in the town center.

In addition, the DDA stated that the existing draft policies might be too restrictive in attracting vendors. Ms. Pratt explained that the draft policy was adapted from another market with the thought that the policies could be loosened to meet the needs of the city’s market. Ms. Pratt further explained that the city’s current ordinance regarding non-licensed sales also influenced some of the sections of the draft policy. The DDA recommended that the city consider allowing vendors to sell hand-crafted items in addition to home-grown produce.

OTHER BUSINESS: The DDA did not discuss any items related to other business.  

ADJOURNMENT: Upon motion by Mr. Vinson, seconded by Mr. Ready, the meeting was adjourned at 8:21 PM. The vote was 6 – 0.

Submitted by:

Matthew Pepper, Secretary/Treasurer