A proposed music festival geared toward adults and put before the Greenfield Village Council at a previous meeting died in silence at Wednesday’s council meeting.
At council’s last meeting, Catch 22 owner Mark Clyburn requested the use of Mitchell Park for a music festival in August, an event with not only music, but alcohol. He said he would provide his own security, contain the area where drinking would be allowed, and do whatever else council wanted him to do.
Clyburn said he wanted to use Mitchell Park because of not only the space for parking, but the space for the event.
He renewed his willingness at Wednesday’s meeting to do council’s bidding on the matter should members approve his use of the public property.
The discussion began with council chair Betty Jackman saying that alcohol might be an issue. “It’s one of the first rules posted out there,” she said, speaking of a list of prohibited items at the park.
Law director Brian Zets said the matter was council’s decision, but he advised that council keep in mind what allowing alcohol at Mitchell Park could lead to in the future insofar as other requests for the use of public property.
Zets said that according to the advice of a long-time village solicitor he knew, “You have to be careful of the exceptions you carve out because exceptions eventually become rules.”
“That being said, it’s your decision,” Zets said to council members that were present, as Bob Bergstrom was absent from Wednesday’s meeting.
Council member Chris Borreson wondered how it would play out should council allow not only the event, but alcohol. He said it’s on public property and the open container and public intoxication laws “would make it risky.”
Council member Bill Redenbaugh echoed those thoughts.
Borreson spoke of the beer gardens of the annual Oktoberfest and the Greene Countrie Towne Festival. While the events, as a whole, are held on public property, the alcohol and those partaking in its consumption are strictly held to private property, he said.
“Alcohol, that’s the kicker,” Borreson said.
The matter was quashed when Jackman made a motion to allow Clyburn’s request and no other council member seconded the motion, which is required before a vote is taken.
In other business, city manager Ron Coffey, in his report to council, observed that on Wednesday morning two former public servants were laid to rest.
It was, he said, “a sad day.”
John Baal, Greenfield’s last elected mayor, and Terry Hanson, who served as assistant chief at the Greenfield Fire Department, each recently passed away, and their respective services were held Wednesday.
Coffey also reported that work on Greenfield’s railroad improvement project continues, and that recently ties have been distributed for installation along the line.
“Despite heavy rainfall … that seems to be an ongoing trend, the work continues to go smoothly,” he said.
Also on railroad project matters, Coffey said that currently all of the different grant funds are listed as separate line items within the budget, but the different grants need to be created as their own funds and tracked in that manner, according to requirements by grant administrators.
To do so will require council action. A special meeting was set for Monday for council to address legislation on the matter.
Also in his report, Coffey noted the improved ISO rating for Paint Creek Joint EMS/Fire District, which was recently announced as 3, versus the previous rating of 5.
Redenbaugh, who is a Paint Creek fire board member, also spoke of the improved rating calling the 3 “outstanding.”
“The ISO rating in Greenfield, to my knowledge, has never been higher than 5,” he said.
He said it would take time for homeowners to see any positive reflections of the new rating on their homeowners insurance.
“My compliments … go out to all the fellas in the district,” he said, for their hard work toward the achievement.
Reach Angela Shepherd at 937-393-3456, ext. 1681, or on Twitter @wordyshepherd.