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Civic Matters: Library Lot Lawsuit, 'A Voice At The Table,' And More


Ann Arbor and the surrounding communities have been busy with such matters as a lawsuit involving the Library Lot and upcoming school board elections.  These are just a few of topics discussed in this week's "Civic Matters" with WEMU's Patrick Campion and the CivCity Initiative's Mary Morgan.

Mary Morgan
Mary Morgan, executive director of the CivCity Initiative in Ann Arbor

Mary Morgan brings a wealth of experience to the airwaves.  While heading up the CivCity Initiative now, Mary was previously co-founder and publisher of the Ann Arbor Chronicle.  Prior to that, she served as a reporter and editor for the Ann Arbor News when  it was a daily, print edition newspaper. 

This Week's Topics:

  • The lawsuit filed against the City of Ann Arbor by Ann Arbor City Council members Anne Bannister and Sumi Kailasapathy adds yet another twist to the controversy of what to do with the city-owned Library Lot.  The suit alleges that the purchase agreement for the Library Lot – a city-owned site next to the downtown library – violated the city charter because it wasn’t presented to council for approval.  It asks the court to for an injunction to prevent the city from moving forward on the sale to Core Spaces, which wants to build a 17-floor building there.

  • A new activist group has formed called the Ann Arbor Citizens for Mental Health and Public Safety.  The group is led by former Ann Arbor Public Schools trustee Glenn Nelson and others who are advocating for how the City of Ann Arbor should spend funds from the countywide mental health and public safety millage that voters approved last year.  City council voted to spend the funds from that millage on affordable housing, bicycle/pedestrian safety and the city's climate action plan.

  • The Ann Arbor Advisory Task Force Regarding the Community Policing Commission (yes, that's the name) is tackling a major initiative for the city: Developing recommendations to create a new commission focused on police-community relations.  This month, they've started discussing details of a draft police commission ordinance.  Their next meeting is on Thursday, June 28 and will focus on Articles 3 and 4 of the draft document.  The meeting starts at 7 p.m. at CTN studios, 2805 S. Industrial.


Credit League of Women Voters in the Ann Arbor Area
League of Women Voters Intro

• All of these issues might be topics in this week's candidate forums hosted by the local League of Women Voters. Candidates for Ann Arbor mayor, city council and state representative will be on deck, with forums held next month for candidates for county commissioner and state Senate.  Check out the lineup here


Credit Mary Morgan
Ann Arbor District Library June 18 Meeting

• On Tuesday, June 26, the Ann Arbor District Library staff is holding a session for people interested in running for AADL trustee in November.  This year, three nonpartisan seats will be on the Nov. 6 ballot for 4-year terms starting on Jan. 1, 2019.  Tuesday's session starts at 6:30 p.m. at the downtown library, 343 S. Fifth Ave.  Click here for details.

  • Later in the week, the Ann Arbor Public Schools is holding a similar session for prospective school board candidates.  It takes place on Thursday, June 28 at 6 p.m. at the Balas Administration Building, 2555 S. StateClick here for more info.

  • It's also worth giving a shout-out to two upcoming Ypsilanti candidate forums on June 28 and 29.  Called "A Voice at the Table," these are organized and led by youth, and only people under the age of 22 can ask questions.  The focus is on Ypsi-area candidates for Washtenaw County Commissioner and the state Legislature.  Details here.


Credit Mary Morgan
Nixon Road Roundabouts

• In non-election news, the City of Ann Arbor is planning significant changes to the Nixon Road corridor, including several roundabouts between Huron Parkway and the M-14 overpass.  You can provide feedback about this project via an online survey posted on A2 Open City Hall.  The deadline to respond is 3 p.m. on Friday, June 29.

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— Patrick Campion is the WEMU Program Director.  You can contact Patrick at734.487.3363, on twitter @WEMUPC, or email him at pcampion@emich.edu

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