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Council Watch

Council watch

Billy Manes pays attention to city government so you don't have to

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And we're back! After three weeks of silence (and two weeks of relatively nothing going on), the city's gears seemed back in order with a full agenda of questionable purchases. First, though, did you guys know how generous city staffers are? They pulled together $456,160 in this year's Workplace Giving campaign, 14 percent over last year's philanthropy. Things are looking up! Or at least vertical.

The city holds a hearing on its feasibility study and purchase option agreement with SED Development LLC, including 3.3 acres of additional land.
Translation: Late last month, the ever-losing Orlando Magic's development arm, SED Development, pushed the hoop further off the court when it requested a 60-day extension on its supersized plan to convert an Amway Center-adjacent parking garage into a $100 million entertainment complex that would also serve as the company's headquarters. Well, it looks like the Magic just got more magical, because now they want to expand the agreement option to include, wait for it, the downtown headquarters of the Orlando Police Department. What? Though it's already paid the city $100,000 (half of which is a refundable deposit) for the garage parcel, it will double that sum for consideration of the old OPD building, thereby buying another 180 days to consider whether the company wants any of it. But where will the cops go?

The city approves strategic acquisitions of 611 W. Church Street, 22 S. Terry Ave., 630 W. Central Blvd. and 625 W. Pine Street in the Parramore neighborhood.
Translation: Hmm. Citing its "long-range vision for redevelopment in Parramore," the city is apparently considering dropping close to $4 million on four properties located suspiciously close to the Amway Center and the Orlando Police Department. The city's wonderful track record of gentrified development in Parramore – plus the coming clusterfuck of the creative village – make this development not at all suspicious. Unless it's just a new home for the cops, which it probably is.

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