Merced Council considers election change, business incentives
At its Tuesday meeting the Merced City Council will consider changing elections to even years and two measures that would assist local businesses.
The Council normally meets on the first and third Mondays of the month, but is meeting on Tuesday because of the Presidents Day holiday. The meeting will be available on Comcast Channel 96 and also streamed live with a link on the City’s website.
Council is being asked to consider switching from holding elections in odd years to even years to reduce election costs. Most other agencies have switched to even election years, leaving the City to bear most election costs.
In 2009 when the City shared election costs with other agencies the municipal election cost $18,454.98. In 2011 the cost of the general election was $113,120.29.
Council is being asked by Council Member Mike Murphy to consider a business incentive program like the one adopted by the city of Turlock. The Turlock program gives new businesses $1,000 if they locate in the City. In exchange they must have a business plan, meet zoning requirements and meet with City officials quarterly.
Council also is being asked to consider a resolution in support of enterprise zone regulations for the City to assist local businesses. Due to the use of enterprise zones in Merced County, 655 new jobs were created and 3,114 jobs were retained in 2012.
The Council will meet in an adjourned study session at 5:30 p.m. in the Council Chambers to interview candidates for the two vacancies on the Planning Commission.
The Council agenda is posted online at www.cityofmerced.org and is available outside the chambers prior to the meeting. Request to Speak cards are available at the meeting or can be downloaded from the City's website. Cards must be turned in to the City Clerk in order for a person to be recognized by the Council.
City Council meetings are now being streamed live on the Internet. A link to the live meeting is on the City’s home page at www.cityofmerced.org. The City will also add the Council video the following business day to YouTube for people that were unable to watch it live. These new services are in addition to the live broadcast of the meeting on the Comcast’s Government Channel 96.