Entertainment

Committee summary: West Homewood Entertainment District, city manager discussed Monday night

West Homewood may soon have an entertainment district.

The Homewood City Public Safety Committee met Monday night to discuss the possibility of creating an entertainment district in the area following the creation of an entertainment district in downtown Homewood last year. Attempts to bring the area to Edgewood earlier this year were unsuccessful. The city still has the right to create another borough, but it needs the approval of the state legislature to create new ones.

The entertainment district allows patrons to consume alcohol on the street within the district, and allows restaurants to sell alcohol off-premise within the designated area.

Councilor Andrew Wolverton, who represents part of West Homewood, said he has heard from many residents and businesses in favor of creating a neighborhood in West Homewood. The district will include, in part, the area including Little London, Seeds Coffee, Pizzeria GM and Ash.

Resident Chad Stogner raised concerns about the area, arguing that it includes parts of church property — the map did include part of church property across from the GM Pizzeria, but the committee is reviewing it — and will mostly serve as an open container law. While others feel the same way, Stogner said, they are uncomfortable performing because of other bands’ support and advice.

Stogner asked the committee to consider advising businesses to apply for a special license from the State Liquor Control Board that would allow them to serve alcohol on sidewalks or in seating areas outside of their restaurant without creating a larger neighborhood. Advisor Melanie Gere also suggested this as a possible alternative.

Stogner also expressed concern about the existence of an entertainment district in the area where children walk to school. Councilor Barry Smith said the council has the power to control the county’s hours of operation. Working hours in the city center after school hours.

Although not required by law, Council President Alex Wyatt decided to hold a public hearing on the matter. The city council will vote on June 13 to set a date for that hearing, with Wyatt telling The Homewood Star that it will likely take place at the next council meeting on June 27.

Councilor Carlos Alemán, who also represents the West Homewood neighborhood, said the neighborhood promotes walkability.

With regard to other cases, the committee received an update on the traffic calming measures that are underway and awaiting the delivery of items needed to complete the work.

Finance Committee

At the finance committee, Wyatt announced the members of a special committee formed to explore the possibility of bringing a city manager or city administrator to Homewood.

Committee members are Wyatt, Aleman, Homewood Fire Chief Nick Hill, Homewood Chamber of Commerce Director Meredith Drennen, resident Andrea Snyder, and resident Kent Haynes.

Wyatt said the committee plans to meet in the near future to develop a plan for how to study the impact of hiring a professional to run the day-to-day business of the city and report back to the finance committee as they come. there are updates. He said it could take “a year or so” to develop his findings and submit a recommendation.

Any changes to the city’s form of government must be approved by public vote.

The committee also voted to recommend changes to the City’s vacation policy for employees on probation. Probationary workers in their first year in the city were previously not eligible to take leave during their first year of employment, even though they received one sick day and one vacation day per month during that time. However, the Jefferson County Human Resources Board now allows cities to revise their policies if they notify the board. City Clerk Melody Salter said the committee’s recommendation is for employees to take increased sick leave and leave after 90 days of continuous work during their first year of service. The entire council will have to approve the changes.

The committee also approved budget amendments, declaring dump trucks as surplus, conducted a city audit review, and heard an update on 18th Street construction, which is still ongoing.

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