It is once again almost time for the City Council to go on a “retreat.” This year, two meetings are scheduled for 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Jan. 31 and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Feb. 1.
Retreats, technically special City Council meetings, are an opportunity for informal, back-and-forth discussion between councilmembers and pertinent staff members regarding city service levels and issues affecting various pieces of the City budget. There will be no individual agenda items for Council to take any action on. However, some of the discussion can give staff an indication of which issues or projects need attention.
The retreat will also be an opportunity for new Councilmember Karen Watts and rejoining Councilmember Leslie McClendon to get up to date on factors and conditions affecting the City.
The retreat is in Yuma this year (a couple times in previous years, it was held in conjunction with Legislative Day at the Arizona Capitol in Phoenix).
However: It’s at the Sonoran Pueblo club on Marine Corps Air Station Yuma, which requires some facilitation for access.
While members of the public may attend this meeting, doing so will require some advance planning and prompt action.
Members of the general public who wish to attend either or both days of the Council retreat should provide your full name, date of birth and driver’s license number, which will be used to place attendees on the master access required in order to be allowed through the main gate of MCAS Yuma. Prospective attendees can email firstname.lastname@example.org or call the City Administration office at 373-5011 and ask to be put on the list. Either way, the City would need this information by the end of business on Jan. 17.
The City would collect this information solely for the purpose of base access for this event and turn that information over to MCAS Yuma Provost Marshal’s Office. It will not be kept or maintained in any permanent database.
“These are Homeland Security protocols,” said Dave Nash, public affairs coordinator with the City. “If you arrive at the main gate without having provided us this info, you will be diverted to a separate area until someone from staff can leave the event, meet you and escort you to the retreat. There would be a significant delay in getting to you, and you may miss the entire discussion on the subject or issue you had intended to see.”
While the City realizes not everyone may know if their schedule will be cleared on the 31st and 1st the City recommends that if you have interest in attending the retreat, please provide the information to us by the Jan. 17 deadline.
The City expects members of the local media to cover the retreat, as has been done in previous years. Additionally, issues covered in the retreat often later are discussed in future worksessions or meetings of the Yuma City Council; those would then be televised on City 73 TV or online for nonsubscribers of cable TV.