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Modesto City Council Watch

The Modesto City Council on Tuesday is scheduled to vote on:

— Releasing $3.2 million in redevelopment funds to advance a 150-unit affordable housing project on Ninth Street. The Modesto Redevelopment Agency has set aside $6.7 million for the project, which is being built by EAH, a San Rafael nonprofit. There is a sense of urgency to pass this measure because it will help EAH apply for a tax credit by a June 9 deadline.

— Rejecting a scheduled increase in the cost of building permits that was intended to reflect the price of inflation. The price of a building permit for a single-family home would rise to $23,187 from $21,670 if the council chooses to adopt the increase. City employees are recommending Modesto forgo the increase because of the city's depressed building environment.

— Requiring top-level managers and attorneys to take 96 hours of furlough time in the coming budget year, which starts July 1. This group of about 40 employees would be prohibited from cashing out management leave at the end of this year. Typically, managers are allowed to cash out a portion of that benefit every December. The city can impose these changes on this group of employees, but it would have to bargain for these concessions if it wants them from its unions.

— Rejecting bids for repairs to a traffic operations building on Elm Street. The building has leaks and ventilation problems. Repairs would cost about $240,000. The city is considering delaying the project to use the money in other ways, such as in street repairs.

In other action, the council is scheduled to meet in closed session to discuss labor negotiations with its unions.

-- Adam Ashton

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