SUISUN CITY — City Council members authorized the city manager Tuesday to execute an application for a $163,00 Priority Development Area grant, but not all council members agreed.
“This is a great opportunity for the city,” April Wooden, the city’s community development director, told the council.
Council members Jane Day and Mike Hudson begged to differ, and voted not to submit the application.
“It’s another step in controlling a city. I have a great fear of that,” Day said, citing the key program goals of the grant, which include increasing jobs and housing in the planning area, increasing land use intensity, increasing modes of transportation and locating services and retail within the planning area.
Hudson echoed Day’s concerns and said it would be nice to get the grant but not with the provisions stipulated.
“There are lots of good things we could do with this money,” he said. “I’m not convinced this is one of them.”
He referred to the grant as “chump change to redesign our neighborhoods.”
Councilman Mike Segala said applying for the grant is the next step in a process that’s already begun.
“This money will go somewhere else,” he said. “Why shouldn’t we look at it?”
A handful of citizens spoke against applying for the money.
“Turn down the grant, I’ll bet you they double it,” said Michael Waranke.
Mayor Pete Sanchez said he wasn’t crazy about the idea of another study. He said there have been at least three other studies he’s aware of paid for by grants, studies that are now collecting dust.
However, as an accountant, he said there was no way he could turn down $163,000 from Uncle Sam. And, if Suisun City didn’t apply, some other city would and get the money, quite possibly a city with fluoride in the water, he said in jest.
Prior to the council meeting, the Suisun Solano Water Authority met in the council chambers. Six people spoke up on the issue of adding fluoride to Suisun City’s water. Sanchez sits on the Suisun Solano Water Authority and is behind the push to add fluoride to the city’s water.
Some residents also spoke on the fluoride issue during the council meeting during public comments.
“If people want fluoride they can get it off the shelves,” said Lawrence Woods. “If you vote for this, our children will pay for it.”
“It’s nothing but a neurotoxin,” said Matt DeMatile, the father of three children.
The council took no action on the fluoride issue. This is the third time in two decades the topic has been before the council.
Reach Amy Maginnis-Honey at 427-6957 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter at www.twitter.com/amaginnisdr.