April 3, 2013

The Update Desk: 4/3/2013

A couple of updates for you on some recent posts.

First, I now know a lot more about the umbrella factory that's being proposed for my neighborhood.

You'll recall I was hoping it would either be those little cocktail umbrellas, or else the big patio umbrellas - both of which I'd be willing to QC.  Turns out that it's actually going to be artistic umbrellas, if it gets approved. And I stand corrected: even though the postcard from the Zoning Board of Appeals seemed to be directing me to stop by and visit them, to see the proposal, I was able to find it online. You can check out things that might be happening in your neighborhood here.

The homeowner is an artist specializing in inspirational designs, and will take care of printing the umbrella fabric with his designs.  The 'factory' aspect comes in because there will be one employee, working one day a week, turning the stamped fabric into umbrellas.  The end products will be sold online, of course, but also at at religious conferences and to churches. 

My neighbor even went so far as to engage a couple of law students from SU to help with the application. Overall it seemed like a pretty good package. Minutes from the meeting haven't been posted yet, so I'm not sure if the proposal was approved.  

Next, you all know how unimpressed I was with the suggestion by Common Councilor Jake Barrett that Syracuse might want to offer an amnesty program for parking ticket scofflaws, before ramping up booting efforts.  The boot locks the car and won't get removed until the tickets are cleared. 

Not surprisingly, I was not the only one who thought that was a dumb idea - especially after the Post-Standard published the list of the top 55 illegal parkers.  Number one on the list owed close to $8,000 for his tickets, which were collected between 1997 and 2011.  Another person, according to the article, was paying off her debt - over $4,100 - at the rate of $25 per month. At least she's trying. And of course, there's an elected official on the list, because it wouldn't be nearly as much fun without one.

The best part, other than the amnesty idea being dead on arrival, was that this past Monday, the Common Council approved the contract with PayLock, the company that currently provides the boots, so we're going to start collecting some much-needed cash for the city coffers. The three-year deal with PayLock also means that we won't be paying Syracuse's Finest to handle the booting, which was logically a low priority.

Can you say win, win, win?

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