Manhattan’s City Commission gathered Tuesday night at City Hall, and much discussion on a wide variety of topics ensued. First up was the first reading of the 2012 City Budget Ordinance, presented by Director of Finance Bernie Hayen. Hayen laid the basics of the 2012 budget out for the Commissioners, who then asked numerous questions and brainstormed on how to save more money for the City in the future. One idea posited was to move the Manhattan Arts Center’s funding to the Parks and Recreation Department’s budgetary concerns. Director Curt Loupe gave his opinion on the idea, saying that though it may stretch things out a bit more for his department, he’s willing to abide by the will of the Commission. The Commission passed the ordinance on to a second reading by a unanimous vote of five to zero.
Also discussed was the south end redevelopment project, specifically the plans for Lot 9. Commissioners heard presentations from those in favor of Flint Hills Square LLC’s plan to construct two major hotels on the lot, and also from those opposed to the plan, who believe that a reboot is necessary. However, the Commission allowed Flint Hills Square to stick to their original plan.