Due to the Coronavirus Pandemic, the regular meeting of the City Council was held at 12:00 p.m., via Zoom video communications. Mayor Johnson recognized Alderwoman Linda Wilder-Bryan to offer the invocation.


PRESENT:  Mayor Van R. Johnson, II, Presiding

Alderwoman Kesha Gibson-Carter, At-Large, Post 1, Chairman

Alderwoman Alicia Miller Blakely, At-Large, Post 2

Alderwoman Bernetta B. Lanier, District 1

Alderman Detric Leggett, District  2

Alderwoman Linda Wilder-Bryan, District 3

Alderman Nick Palumbo, District 4, Vice-Chairman

Alderwoman Dr. Estella Edwards Shabazz, District 5, Mayor Pro-Tem

Alderman Kurtis Purtee, District 6


City Manager Joseph A. Melder

City Attorney Bates Lovett

Clerk of Council Mark Massey

Workshop Agenda Items
1. Fairgrounds Development Project Update
Exhibit 1: Fairgrounds Workshop FINAL.pdf

Mayor Johnson thanked prior Acting City Managers Patrick Monahan, Michael Brown and Heath Lloyd for the diligent work on the Fairgounds Development Project and thanked City Manager Melder in advance for continuing the work on the Fairgrounds Development Project to its completion.  He indicated there will be a decision within the next couple of weeks based on a variety of factors which City Manager Jay Melder will go into detail and discuss.  Mayor Johnson introduced Mr. Melder.

City Manager Melder presented a PowerPoint presentation giving detailed information on updates to the Fairgrounds Development Project.  He anticipates a recommendation will be ready for Council at the next regular Council Meeting, October 28, 2021.  Mr. Melder will send copies of the presentation to Council Members and Clerk of Council.

Mayor Johnson thanked City Manager Melder for the informational presentation.  Following the presentation there was a question and discussion session from Council Members.

  • Of the three (3) final proposals, will the City Manager give final recommendations for Council's decision (Alderwoman Wilder-Bryan). 
  • When was the property zoned for wetlands and conservatory purposes.  Before or after the purchase (Alderwoman Miller Blakely).
  • Thank you for the presentation.  Council is ready to move forward with the Project (Mayor Pro-Tem Dr. Shabazz).
  • Thank you for being the last City Manager to work on the Project.  Congratulations to the 5th District and the surrounding communities who will benefit from the Project.  Thank you for reaching out to the 5th District Coalition and listening to their opinions (Alderwoman Gibson-Carter).
  • This proposal was a hybrid and different than the traditional, taking into consideration the community benefit approach.  With respects to the 'RFP" parameters, how will the community benefit and community input portions weigh-in the final proposal recommendation (Alderwoman Lanier).

Mayor Johnson reiterated Council's commitment in early January 2020 to complete this project.  Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, the project will be completed as Council wanted.  He thanked City Manager Melder, Patrick Monahan, Michael Brown and Heath Lloyd for working with Council and staff to bring the project to completion.


Mayor Johnson adjourned the Workshop at 12:30 p.m.


A video recording of the workshop can be found by copying and inserting the link below in your url:





Mark Massey, Clerk of Council

Date Minutes Approved:   October 28, 2021


Signature:  mm

Agenda Plus