The Wetumpka City Council voted Monday to approve the Planning Commission’s recommendation to contract with The Walker Collaborative to create a limited project plan for the downtown area.
The effort is funded by a $49,500 Community Development Block Grant. Goodwyn, Mills and Cawood was also considered for the project.
During the pre-meeting work session, Mayor Jerry Willis asked council members to consider the proximity of the competing firms.
“I just want to throw this out there – I have some concern that The Walker Collaborative is out of Nashville,” he said. “Goodwyn, Mills and Cawood is already working on part of our downtown project. It seems like it would be a long way for someone to come from Nashville if we need advice.”
Councilman Percy Gill (D2), who serves on the Planning Commission, encouraged council members to follow the board’s recommendation.
“It was a decisive vote,” he said. “I think we have to be careful about overturning something the commission recommends. I believe it would set a negative precedent.”
The council approved retaining The Walker Collaborative unanimously.
In other business:
•The council approved funding up to $5,000 to the Wetumpka Water Works and Sewer Board for water line improvements on Queen Ann Road.
•Revisions to the 2012-13 budget were approved. The total revenues and expenditures were not affected – all changes were to line items.
•A contract was approved for Fourth of July fireworks to be provided by Pyrotecnico for $6,000.
•Permission was given to install additional street lights in the parking area near the Old Calaboose.
•Approval was given for the use of Gold Star Park and the riverwalk for July’s River and Blues event.
•The council decided to hold a public hearing June 17 to solicit opinions on a rezoning recommendation made by the Planning Commission.
•Permission was granted to proceed with an FAA grant application for the Wetumpka Municipal Airport.