What To Watch At This Week's Charlotte City Council Meeting

Oct 13, 2019

Affordable housing, the Brooklyn Village redevelopment, honors for a late civil rights activist — the Charlotte City Council sure has a lot on its plate this week! Here's what WFAE reporters will be keeping an eye on during City Council's particularly busy meeting Monday night.

Dwayne L. Collins Day Proclamation

The City Council is expected to declare Monday "Dwayne L. Collins Day," after the influential political activist who died this year.

Collins was a fierce advocate for Charlotte's black residents in the 1990s and 2000s, pushing for police accountability following deadly police shootings, and fighting to preserve court-ordered busing in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, The Charlotte Observer reported.

He also led Charlotte's Black Political Caucus from 2006 to 2009 and was active in local politics up until his death in August. He died at age 51 from a type of blood cancer, according to his son.

10-Year Extension For Brooklyn Village

In uptown's Second Ward, Marshall Park is due to be bulldozed and transformed into a huge redevelopment called Brooklyn Village, named for the African American community that used to reside in that area, but was bulldozed, itself, in the name of urban development.

The city gave the land to Mecklenburg County in 2007 with a provision that if it wasn't sold to a developer by the end of 2019, the city could take it back at no cost. The county does have plans to sell it to a developer called BK Partners, but no deal has been finalized yet.

So, City Council is considering giving the county a 10-year extension. Council members have also said they want low-cost, affordable units included in the development, which the developer has been open to.

City Council was scheduled to vote on the extension last month, but then delayed it to give council members time to think things over.
 

Funding For Two Affordable Housing Complexes

The Charlotte Housing Authority wants to build two new apartment complexes (one for families, the other for seniors) and offer them at affordable prices. They would be built at 330 Archdale Drive in south Charlotte, not far from the Mountclaire South neighborhood, and be named the Archdale Flats.

In order to fund construction, the housing authority needs about $31.8 million (that's $21.1 million for the 202-unit family complex, and $10.7 million for the 131-unit senior complex.) Where to get the money? Housing bonds, of course! The city council will decide if it wants to issue the bonds — and take on $31.8 million in debt — to fund the construction.

For the affordable housing wonks out there: Both complexes would serve people making between 30% and 80% of the area's median income.

Miscellany

Some other smaller items to watch — council members are expected to declare October "Charlotte Fire Prevention Month," "Domestic Violence Awareness Month" and "Dyslexia Awareness Month." They're also expected to declare Oct. 14 "Indigenous Peoples' Day." 

The council is also scheduled to vote on raising fines for people who violate the housing code — from an initial $100 fine plus $10 every day thereafter to $100 per day.

Also, if you have a pressing issue to tell City Council about that isn't on the agenda, you can sign up to speak at this week's public forum. Write "public forum" in the "item number" box on the online form. Speakers are limited to three minutes.

Monday's meeting starts at 6:30 p.m. at the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Government Center.