The Manhattan City Commission took action on multiple agenda items during their Tuesday meeting.
The board unanimously approved and authorized City Staff to amend the current Economic Development Agreement with the Manhattan Area Chamber of Commerce to include $250,000 for the Elevate Fund, a revolving loan program intended to assist locally owned businesses obtain early access to capital.
Commissioner Wynn Butler said he had doubts when the request was presented in March, but with the current agreement requiring a yearly, in-depth report on forecasted revenues and expenditures before renewing the fund in 2024 and 2025, he felt comfortable authorizing the amendment.
The board also approved, in a 4-0 vote, executing an amendment and resolution for the construction and financing of the Aggieville Pedestrian Walkway between Rally House and Goodscents.
The alley design also includes a dumpster enclosure north of Goodscents. Deputy City Manager Jason Hilgers said this enclosure is the first step in addressing significant trash problems in the district.
Commissioners also unanimously approved the first reading of an ordinance rezoning an approximately 79-acre tract of land west of the Manhattan Regional Airport for industrial and commercial use.
Residents of the Random Woods neighborhood, which sits immediately west of the tract, cited concerns regarding regulation of the developments, the sandy soil currently being dug up and the development’s impact on septic systems.
Olsson Engineer Mark Bachamp provided reassurance that these complications are unlikely to occur.
Commissioners agreed the impact appears to be minimal and the development is an appropriate expansion for the city and airport.
Commissioners also expressed interest, with further details to be discussed closer to budget preparations, in fulfilling a funding request from the Manhattan Area Technical College for their new Advanced Technology Center.