Ann Arbor City Council confirms new appointments to DDA and expanded transit authority board
The Ann Arbor City Council unanimously confirmed the appointment of Underground Printing co-owner Rishi Narayan to the Downtown Development Authority board.
Narayan replaces Leah Gunn, who had served on the DDA board for many years until stepping down recently.
Narayan will serve a three-year term through Aug. 18, 2016.
Ryan J. Stanton | AnnArbor.com
There still are two vacant seats on the DDA board. Hieftje said Monday night he's nominating Al McWilliams, president of Quack!Media on Main Street, to replace Newcombe Clark.
"He's on Main Street. I heard good reviews of him down there," Hieftje said. "He's also another entrepreneur and someone who has a cutting-edge business. He wants to make downtown a place that can attract the talented people he needs to run his business."
Hieftje said when he became mayor over a decade ago, there were developers on the DDA board and he has made a point of replacing them with small business owners.
As with most boards and commissions in Ann Arbor, the mayor nominates prospective appointees. It takes at least six votes from council to confirm the appointments.
Council Members Stephen Kunselman and Christopher Taylor, both 3rd Ward Democrats, were absent Monday night, so the vote was 9-0.
The council also voted 9-0 to appoint Ann Arbor resident Jack Bernard to a vacant seat on the newly expanded Ann Arbor Area Transportation Authority board.
The makeup of the transit authority recently changed to include Ypsilanti. The board was expanded from seven to nine members, giving Ypsilanti one seat and Ann Arbor one more seat.
The city of Ypsilanti already appointed Gillian Ream as its representative, and Bernard now will fill the additional Ann Arbor seat.
Bernard is an attorney for the University of Michigan and a lecturer. Legally blind, he is chairman of the U-M Council for Disability Concerns.
"He's very highly regarded," Hieftje said. "And he has a disability himself. He's a bus rider. He depends on the bus and doesn't drive."
Ryan J. Stanton covers government and politics for AnnArbor.com. Reach him at email@example.com or 734-623-2529. You also can follow him on Twitter or subscribe to AnnArbor.com's email newsletters.