The Gazette covers City Hall, now a flood-damaged icon on May's Island in the Cedar River

Twenty finalists now become 24 for nine-member Local-Option Sales Tax Oversight Committee; neighborhood assn. v.p. drops out

In City Hall, Floods on March 20, 2009 at 11:03 am

The City Council pared the list of 71 applicants for the nine-member Local-Option Sales Tax Oversight Committee down to 20 last week, and on Monday, the council increase the list of finalists to 24.

Added to the list were Markell Kuper, Jerry Gillon, Patrick DePalma, Nick Cappussi and Joseph Michalec Sr., while Jon Galvin, vice president for the Northwest Neighbors Association, withdrew his name from the list.

Each council member reviewed the 71 applications and each ranked applicants one through 20, and then those rankings were thrown together to come up with the finalists.

Each of the 24 will have a 7-minute interview with council members on Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday. The nine members will be in place by April 1, when the local-option sales tax is collected.

Those named previously are Jeffery Beer, Stephen Hammes; Gary Ficken; James Powers; Elizabeth Hladky; James Sattler; Patrick Courtney; Sandra Skelton; Robert Untiedt; B. Larry Johnson; Heather Schoonover; Don Boland; Richard McArtor; Jeff Palmer; Marvin Dale Hedgecoth; Oran Teat; Jon Galvin; John Gruca; W. Scott Jamieson; and Charles Watkins.

Council members picked the finalists, in part, with an eye to those who could bring expertise in accounting, finance, construction and disaster recovery.

Council members also said they were looking for representation from those affected by the flood.

The heads of neighborhood associations have pushed to get representatives from their groups on the oversight committee. Northwest Neighbors’ Galvin, though, has now dropped out of consideration.

Council members have emphasized that the Oversight Committee’s role is to check and see that the council has spent local-option sales tax revenue as the council said it would prior to the March 3 vote approving the tax.

Ninety percent of the revenue is to go to housing-related flood relief and 10 percent to property-tax relief.

The tax is expected to bring in $17 million to $18 million a year for five years and three months.

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