Notes From The Council Chambers

Release Date: 

City Council Meeting notes from January 2, 2018

City Committee Appointments

At the January 2 City Council meeting, the Council made appointments to fill expired positions on the numerous City advisory committees.

Federal Lobby/Grant Consultants

The Council received an update from CFM Strategic Communication Services.  This is a consulting firm that assists us in obtaining federal grants.  They were hired in March of 2017 on an experimental basis.  They suggested we might realize a significant return on our investment of $50,000/year, their annual fee.  To date, we have received $0 after submitting for four grants totaling $2.4M.  Follow up conversations they had with the federal agencies responsible for award these grants suggested ways to strengthen the application for resubmission in the coming year.  We were also told having been denied once and re-applying further strengthens our applications.

Additionally, CFM has been valuable in messaging our congressman and senators on a number of issues such as preservation of federal funding for the Essential Air Service subsidy that allows us to attract Boutique Air and funding for the air traffic control tower which are annually threatened to be eliminated.  The loss of these would not only diminish the airport asset but the UAS test range as well.

I expect this contract to be extended for another year.

EOCI Resolution

Council approved an updated resolution allowing inmates from Eastern Oregon Correctional Institute and/or other state prison facilities to work inside the City limits.  This was originally approved over a year ago with the stipulation that it would be revisited after one year to see if there were any issues or concerns that needed Council consideration.  Since its original approval, the Oregon Department of Corrections has been unable to identify enough personnel within EOCI to meet the minimum requirements to allow them outside in the community.  However, crews have been brought to Pendleton from Two Rivers prison in Umatilla.  These crews have provided a number of benefits to the community and the Council unanimously approved the continuation of this program.

Council President

Another annual item is the election of a Council President who serves in the Mayor's absence in running meetings or at a number of public events that the Mayor is asked to attend around the community.  Councilor Neil Brown was elected to serve another year.

Bond Refinance

The last item the Council approved was to refinance three loans made by the City which takes advantage of more favorable borrowing terms saving the City over $700,000.