February Community Update: Stay In The Loop

By: Brett Raffish on Feb 06, 2017 in ASI Student Government

Article Revised: Feb 06, 2017 16:04 PM

January was an eventful, action-packed month for the San Luis Obispo City Council. As students returned to school from winter break, ASI and students hit the ground running by voicing their opinions, concerns, and desires over several key issues to SLO City Council and within the community.

On Monday, January 9, the City of San Luis Obispo held a Community Budget Goal Setting Forum. Over 400 community members of all ages attended to voice their opinions on how the City’s budget should be distributed and spent over the next two years. Interests ranged from  increasing lighting to improving accommodations for cyclists.

Lighting was a very bright spot of hope for the students present at the Forum. Through San Luis Obispo’s system of dot-ocracy, the student push for lighting qualified to be featured on SLO City’s online voting platform for budget allocation, open to all community members for voting. Student and resident opinions pushed lighting to be the number one area for budget allocation.

Over the course of one week, the student-proposed lighting initiative accumulated over twice as many votes as any other proposed budget priority and gathered over 800 votes for the City of SLO to allocate money for lighting in the upcoming year. Although the budget will be finalized in June, the collective drive and preliminary student support for lighting is looking to brighten the future of Mustangs to come. 

On Tuesday, January 17, students again unleashed their powerful voices to the community at the SLO City Council meeting. Two issues were presented which would directly impact the student population in San Luis Obispo—a proposed amendment to the current Safety Enhancement Zone Ordinance, as well as, a study session for a potential SLO City operated party registration program.

San Luis Obispo Police Department proposed to add an additional 17–21 double fine days to the Safety Enhancement Zone blanketing the St. Patrick’s Day holiday. Several students spoke during public comment and members from the ASI Board of Directors presented a formal resolution opposing the increased fine days. The amendment did not pass with a 4–1 vote by the SLO City Council.

A potential party registration program was also presented to the SLO City council by the San Luis Obispo Police Department. SLOPD and the City are considering the voluntary party registration pilot program, in which residents would be able to register their private party or event in advance with the City of San Luis Obispo. If the event were to receive a noise complaint, SLOPD would call the host with a specified time as to when the party must end and if the host is compliant, a citation would not be issued. The program is anticipated to reduce the number of noise violations and assist SLOPD resources based upon it’s implementation in cities, such as, Boulder,CO, Clemson, SC, and Amherst, MA. The pilot program will be further explored and potentially implemented within the upcoming months.

Community Update will continue to present monthly reports on these community highlights and more. For more information and to get involved, visit the San Luis Obispo City Council or attend this month’s meetings on February 7 and February 21, 4:00–6:00 p.m. at the San Luis Obispo City Hall, 990 Palm Street, San Luis Obispo. To have your voice heard in local elections, register to vote at calpoly.turbovote.org.

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