Monroe Park lease moves forward with no recommendation
Councilwoman Robertson has misgivings and Councilman Agelasto has amendments.
The city council committee forwarded the leasing of Monroe Park for $1 a year for the next 30 years to full city council without making a recommendation. A last minute submission by Mo Karnage, local anarchist, threw a wrench into what previously looked like a done deal for the Monroe Park Conservancy.
Both Councilman Parker C. Agelasto, 5th District, and Councilwoman Ellen F. Robertson, 6th District, have expressed misgivings about turning full authority over to the Conservancy and Agelasto was drafting amendments to the lease. Those Amendments will have to walk a tight line, because it’s been stated that the lease can’t be substantially changed without going back out for the public advertisement process.
On Wednesday, council analysts recommended awarding the lease to the Monroe Park Conservancy as planned. The council’s land use, housing and transportation committee concurred with that choice, but the committee forwarded the matter to the full council with no recommendation after several members voiced unease about the lease terms.
Activist Mo Karnage has fought the city’s plan to lease the city’s oldest park to the nonprofit conservancy. The lease idea has been introduced as a way to bring about a $6 million renovation of the park with an equal mix of public and private money. But the plan has drawn criticism from those concerned about the city giving up some control of a high-profile public space.
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