Thursday night marked the final round of departmental budget hearings for Bloomington’s city council.
Mayor John Hamilton was present in person to hear calls from several councilmembers to add security enhancements to the city council chambers.
That would likely mean adding money to the proposed 2024 budget for the facilities maintenance division of the public works department.
Responding to councilmember questions after his presentation on the facilities budget, public works director Adam Wason indicated that there were no security improvements for the council chambers in the 2024 spending plan.
The topic of hardening the council chambers got some public discussion at a budget advance meeting last year. But based on comments from councilmembers on Thursday, concerns about security for the council’s meeting space have a years-long history.
So it has become a sore point.
Asked about the topic by the B Square after Thursday’s meeting, Hamilton said the administration is always focused on public safety, for everyone, including city councilmembers.
As for what specifically the administration has done to add to the security of council chambers, Hamilton indicated that the administration does not publicize specific security measures, “We’ve been talking about it, and we’ve taken steps, and we don’t talk about those steps.”
As far as adding physical infrastructure in the council chambers, Hamilton said that between now and when the budget is finalized, “there’s room for discussion.” Continue reading “Bloomington city council wants its meeting space ‘hardened’ against safety threats”