On March 24, 2014, the City Council passed Resolution 2014-3 establishing the University City Advisory Board on Washington University. The Resolution called for each member of the Council to appoint up to two University City residents or property owners to the committee. The Board was citizen led and directed. Members first met in July of 2014 and monthly or as needed, thereafter. Those meetings were open to the public.
The charge to the committee was to examine Washington University’s tax-exempt property in University City and make recommendations to the City Council on how best to deal with the revenue shortfall from tax-exempt property, particlarly with increased demand for city services and infrastructure. The final report was approved by a majority of the Advisory Board on Washington University by a vote of 9:1. The report has been sent to the Council, and will be formally presented at a City Council meeting in September.
In the final transmission of the report to the members of the Advisory Board, Chair Gary Nelling wrote, “We hope that this report will be one of the guiding lights among others, such as the Upcoming University City Comprehensive Plan, to help our City Council achieve city-nonprofit-profit collaboration, attract private investment, spur economic growth and city financial stability.”
As one of the Council Liaisons to the Advisory Board on Washington University, I want to thank these board members for a job well done. The target is a moving target and the task a gargantuan one. After many months of research and collaborative, back-and-forth discussion, the Advisory board members understood their roles and tasks and produced a very credible report. It has been a pleasure to watch the evolution of this Board’s work. I am grateful that this group of citizens undertook this task in such a professional manner, and that I had the opportunity to serve as one of the Council Liaisons to this Advisory Board.
I believe information informs conversation, and conversation enriches understanding. I hope you will read this report in its entirety and share it with others. Let’s talk about it.
University City • Washington University Advisory Committee
Report to City Council
Tax-Exempt Property Owned by Washington University - Findings, Facts and Recommendations
July 30, 2015