Ranier Mayor Dennis Wagner reminded residents Tuesday that personal conflicts need to be left out of city council meetings.
For that reason, Barry “Woody” Woods was interrupted by Wagner and other residents during the council’s committee meeting while reading a letter from resident Sharon Ball, who was not in attendance.
“I don’t want to bring personal business into council business,” Wagner said. “I understand everybody has a right to say what they want to say and do what they want to do... I’m going to make sure everybody tries to respect everybody’s opinion...I have the right to gavel people and keep this civil for the good of everybody here.”
What Woods was able to read of the letter said Ball felt victimized by resident Sue Swendsen over opinions of city growth and development, including the possible construction of a dock known as the safe harbor/ transient dock. The potential project would accommodate boats longer than 26 feet and is aimed at increasing public access for boat recreation.
Wagner said he understood Ball’s position on the project, as well as others that may differ from hers.
“We’re trying to do city business here, (Ball’s) opinion is valued as anyone else’s,” he said. “The city encompasses many different personalities and ideas, and it may not fit your cup of tea, if it’s for the good of the city, that’s what we’re entrusted here to do... It may not always be what you want and when you want it... we’re trying to do the best for the majority of the people.”
In related business, the council will also take into consideration resident’s opinions and ideas when it addresses parking issues on Spruce Street, the city’s main roadway.
With the construction of new businesses in Ranier, parking can get congested, making it hard for some residents in the area to park in front of their homes. Some homeowners have requested signs that would reserve parking in front of their residences.
Wagner said while the idea will be considered, the council has to remain fair; if it reserves parking for one household, it may have to do it for others.
Future public meetings will be held to inform residences of the potential to implement diagonal parking and what associated costs would be.
“There’s a lot of considerations,” Wagner said. “It’s not just getting a couple parking lanes... you have to get a design right that satisfies most of the wants, if not all of them... It’s not just a quick decision.”
The council also Tuesday tabled appointments to the city’s planning and zoning commission until Wagner can review applications.
“I’m really thankful we have eight applicants for these positions,” Wagner said of the four expired terms.
The mayor will nominate four members which will need final council approval.