Crescent City Considers Grant Writing Services and School Property Acquisition

The Crescent City Commission meeting focused on two primary concerns—the selection of grant writing services to aid in securing funding for city projects and the potential acquisition of a historic middle school property from the school board. The discussion on grant writing services centered around whether to continue with the city’s current grant writer, Fred Fox, who operates on a success-fee structure, or to explore hiring one of the various firms that responded to the city’s request for proposal. The commission is evaluating the top three firms and will discuss the selection at a future meeting.

In addition to the grant writing deliberations, the commission discussed the acquisition of a middle school property. The commissioners emphasized the importance of expertise in commercial real estate and the need for a committee to assist with the negotiation process. This committee would ideally include individuals with legal and real estate knowledge and aim to involve the community and potential partners in the decision-making process. The city manager highlighted the necessity for a planned approach to the acquisition, with considerations of potential uses for the property, community involvement, and financial implications.

During public comments, a resident recommended that the city should seek out Florida-based grant writers and network with local entities for advice, while another stressed the importance of a collaborative approach with the school district in regards to the property purchase. The resident urged the formation of a qualified committee to ensure the property’s preservation and repurposing benefits the community.

The commission also discussed the formation of a Blue Ribbon committee to oversee the potential property purchase and development. This committee would consist of members with expertise in real estate, planning, business, financial appraisal, and historic preservation. The commission debated the urgency of the project, fund allocation, and the potential involvement of the school district in the decision-making process.

The meeting also addressed the scheduling of a workshop to present the master plan, with commissioners coordinating their availability for the event. There was a brief mention of public comments and the procedural consideration of whether to turn off the microphone during this section of future meetings.

Note: This meeting summary was generated by AI, which can occasionally misspell names, misattribute actions, and state inaccuracies. This summary is intended to be a starting point and you should review the meeting record linked above before acting on anything you read. If we got something wrong, let us know. We’re working every day to improve our process in pursuit of universal local government transparency.
Michele Myers
City Council Officials:
H. Harry Banks, Lisa Kane DeVitto, Cynthia Burton, William “B.J.” Laurie, Charles Rudd (City Manager), Robert Pickens (City Attorney)

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