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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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For the most part, it would be a typical week of choreographed boosterism cartwheels as the middle-aged glee club of commissioners gathered for its first May quorum. There are historic houses that have been upgraded just in time for hurricane season! Postal workers want to “stamp out hunger,” because every starving person loves a pun! We love to travel, so we’d better proclaim it to be Travel and Tourism Week while squinting at passing airplanes. But, beneath the veneer, something terrible was lurking. Or at least that would be the perception, and that’s all that matters.

The city proposes ordinance No. 2013-26, relating to sex offenders.
Translation: Fearing that Orlando is becoming a premium destination for sex offenders (because there’s nothing better to worry about than the 475 listed folk residing in the city), the city’s attorneys are looking to expand the limitations on just where alleged perverts are allowed to live. Under state law, registered sex offenders are required to live outside a 1,000-feet perimeter from schools, parks, playgrounds and day-cares. This ordinance would push that up to 1,500 feet, but only for those with newer offenses. Existing registrants will be grandfathered in and not required to move. It should be noted that in places like Miami, these stricter laws have forced people into living under bridges, so that’s awesome.

The city approves an agreement between the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts and Howe Engineers Inc. to provide a special inspector for smoke-control services to DPAC.
Translation: You can’t scream “fire” in a theater, especially if said theater has yet to exist. Still, the city is moving forward with a $144,483 contract with Howe Engineers – which will be working with current project contractor Milan Engineering – to ensure that things don’t get overheated when the smoke machines malfunction during Cats.

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