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Tue, Nov. 19

Downtown upgrades to be considered by council work group

WILLIAMS, Ariz. — The Williams City of Council convened for a short meeting Sept. 26 and introduced new city manager Chase Waggoner.

Waggoner has been on the job for three weeks and presented the council with a short report.

Mayor John Moore said he was interested in sitting down with the Waggoner, the city council and city staff to discuss the direction of the city.

The council began the meeting with Moore presenting an idea of supporting Coconino Community College in bringing a hospitality program to Williams.

Moore said he had been in contact with the college and said he believed the college could offer more for the community of Williams.

“I talked to them about training in hotel and restaurant management,” he said.

Moore said he would like to work with other hotels and restaurants to bring something together for the community.

“Funding is an issue, but they said they could possibly use the old Coconino Community College building near the high school,” he said.

Moore said told the college he would approach the city council to see if the city could financially assist in getting them in starting a program.

“They believe that some of the hotels and restaurants could help fund it too,” he said.

Councilmembers Dawn Trapp and Lee Payne said they would like hear from the college directly on what they could offer. Payne said he is aware that they struggled to have a presence here before, and he would like to see what they could do differently.

The council tabled the discussion for a future meeting.

The city was informed that up to 3,000 could be participating in the opening of the Kadampa Buddhist Temple. The Williams Fire Department and Williams Police Department were given an emergency plan to assist with any problems.

Moore said he hoped to start a discussion with the business community on what kind of improvements can be made into the downtown area.

He said he would like to also get members from the city council and city manager involved with the discussion.

“I would like to see what is needed and discuss how we could fund the ideas,” he said. “It’s easy to say we need city restrooms, but we need to find a way to do that. That could be a discussion of a tax district, parking meters or other ways to fund it.”

Councilmember Don Dent said he just returned from a trip to the northeast and said paid parking was the norm in most of the communities.

“Paid parking is what most of these communities are doing, and some of them have beautiful facilities because of it,” Dent said.

Dent said he would like to include the idea in the discussion with Williams business owners.

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