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BLOG RECAP: New Judge and Prosecutor Sworn in at Richmond Heights Council Meeting

The Richmond Heights City Council also approved several ordinances related to the Cheshire Lodge renovation Monday.

The Richmond Heights City Council is meeting Monday to vote on several issues related to the Cheshire Lodge hotel renovation project. This is an overview of comments made during the discussion.

7:54 P.M.: The council has approved a petition to establish the Cheshire Community Improvement District. It also approved an ordinance tied to the Dale Avenue Great Street project. The meeting has moved into close session.

7:51 P.M.: The council is considering whether to designate the tract of land on which the Cheshire Lodge sits as a blighted area and to approve a development agreement with the development company. District 2 Councilman Mike Jones was the only dissenting vote on the ordinance. "I can't believe any of their figures," he said of the development company's plans to keep sales-tax revenues in the city. He said he's concerned about the city's financial security based on the developers previous statements. He has .

7:46 P.M.: Thomson has asked that city staff evaluate how much it would cost the city to increase its pension program for non-uniformed personnel. He would like to see those employees have the opportunity to reap a retirement benefit. He also said he would like to see some of the utility tax that residents pay given back to those residents. Criteria would be that at least one resident of the household be 65 years old or older and that the residents have been there in the city in the preceding year. He said he would like to see those residents given about $100, and Hamilton agreed to have staff evaluate that possibility.

7:41 P.M.: City Manager Amy Hamilton is giving her report. The council has approved moving forward with putting a for-sale sign on 4.5 acres of city land at the corner of Hanley Road and Dale Avenue. The council also has given its approval to a conditional-use permit for the Cheshire Lodge project.

7:40 P.M.: Stephen O'Brien has been sworn in as the city's new judge. The city's new prosecutor, John Lally, also has been sworn in. Look for photos on Clayton-Richmond Heights Patch on Tuesday.

7:36 P.M.: District 2 Councilman Jim Thomson said the next District 2 meeting happens at 10 a.m. April 16 at The Heights.

7:34 P.M.: Library Week runs April 10-16. Now Beck is reading a proclamation in honor of Arbor Day. This weekend, the city planted five trees at the parkway in front of , he said.

7:31 P.M.: Mayor James Beck is commenting on the screening of the , a house for homeless teens in the Maplewood Richmond Heights School District. "The documentary is excellent," Beck said. He said another showing is planned at 2 p.m. Sunday. He is reading a proclamation in honor of National Library Week 2011.

7:30 P.M.: The meeting is coming to order.

7:26 P.M.: The meeting is set to begin at 7:30 p.m.

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