Whitewater’s Community Development Authority met yesterday afternoon, the agenda including both open and closed session discussions (with a return to open session).
The principal topics of the meeting appear below. I’ll address one of particular concern first, and the rest in the order in which they were discussed in public session.
The Waste Digester Proposal.
Following a return from closed session, the CDA passed a unanimous motion to direct the city’s staff to inform the management of Green Energy Holdings that the city was not able to secure additional tax credits for the project site, and that the city is not interested in offering any additional incentives related to the site at this time.
That’s a sound and sensible decision. Our lovely city can do better, and deserves better. The Community Development Authority has acted prudently on behalf of the city. Whitewater would be fortunate to hear nothing more of the proposal.
Their reasons were surely their own; the decision is welcome whatever the basis.
Readers know that I have followed this proposal closely, with both a designated category for the Whitewater proposal and a another, general category about the environmental, municipal-fiscal, economic, and open government aspects of these plants. It’s an understatement to say that I think it’s a mistaken idea.
A thanks to readers for their many messages to me in opposition to this proposal, their shared concern, & their encouragement. I’ve kept up and answered every message directly (that’s my pleasure), but thanks again.
As is true with everyone in the city, one wants the best for Whitewater, as a safe, clean, lovely city.
The Liquor License for the Black Sheep Restaurant.
An increase in our population allows Whitewater to grant (by state law) two additional liquor licenses, and Council recently granted one to the Black Sheep Restaurant near Cravath Lake (210 W. Whitewater St.). That was a good decision, as the issuance of the new license fully complies with Wisconsin law, is good for the restaurant, and ultimately good for other restaurants.
Restaurants are like a flock of birds: there’s health and safety in numbers. Far from undermining each other, a robust group of establishments will help each other, and encourage increased overall patronage.
While Council had issued and assigned the license previously, the CDA followed past practice and awarded a grant for its initial purchase. A past practice that provides modest support to a small restaurant or merchant (rather than a big business) is a reasonable investment.
Best wishes to the chef-restaurateur, Tyler Sailsbery, and his staff.
Land Sale to Trostel
The CDA approved the sale of three acres (within an area of about six acres) to Trostel, in the amount of $35,000 per acre.
Agreement with the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation for a Seed Fund and an Accompanying Seed Capital Fund Policy Manual.
Readers will find online the documents under consideration at the 9.27.12 meeting about the fund and the policy manual. The process is bound by state laws, regulations, and contractual provisions with the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (the successor to the Wisconsin Department of Commerce). Although the WEDC is undergoing a leadership change, Paul Jadin leaving, that change shouldn’t affect the substance of a proposal with Whitewater.