City Council’s Two-Day Retreat Does Not Evaluate List of Websites

It is sometimes difficult for the public to know what the Greensboro City Council is doing.

The most controversial items on the agenda of a council meeting are often added at the last minute, along with reports that give more information about those items.

But this week, the city council went even further by keeping the public in the dark.

Next week, the city has meetings scheduled for Wednesday, March 23 and Thursday, March 24 in the ACC Hall of Champions conference room at the Greensboro Coliseum Complex on Gate City Boulevard. The March 23 meeting begins at 1 p.m. and the March 24 meeting at 9 a.m.

This is the annual retreat, usually held in January or February, where the city council often discusses budget priorities for the upcoming fiscal year, which begins July 1. This year, the annual retreat is called the “2022 Greensboro City Council Strategy Session.” and entitled “Building on our momentum”.

This will be the first annual retreat with City Manager Tai Jaiyeoba.

Official notice of the meetings was sent to the media and others on the mailing list on March 11.

But as of noon Thursday, March 17, the meetings were not listed on the “Council Meetings” webpage on the City of Greensboro’s website.

Under the “Upcoming Meetings” heading on the “Board Meetings” webpage, it says: “There are no upcoming meetings.”

The meetings are also not listed on the “2022 City Council Meetings Calendar” page.

The city council traditionally meets for about a day and a half at the annual retreat, and in some years major initiatives are set. During the city council’s retreat in 2012, then-mayor Robbie Perkins convinced the council to proceed with construction of the replacement for the old War Memorial Auditorium in the city center rather than at the Colosseum complex like this had been planned. The result of this initial discussion was the $93 million Tanger Center for the Performing Arts – a not-insignificant project.

Since this is an election year, some of those running for city council may wish to attend the retreat, which is open to the public. But if they aren’t on the mailing list and rely on the council meetings webpage to follow city council meetings, they could miss it all together.