LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – Members of the Lansing City Council say they were surprised to learn of the city’s plans to open a warming center for children and families later this month.
“We didn’t have any of the details other than Letts Community Center and then we read your article on WLNS and that’s the first that we heard about it,” says Ryan Kost, the First Ward City Council Member.
He says the city failed to ‘fill them in’ on the plans. While they knew the location, key details such as funding and timing were never discussed in a formal meeting.
“We didn’t know – again — what group that was going to do it,” he says. “We didn’t know how many days it was going to be open. We didn’t know the hours. We knew none of the details.”
Kost tells 6 News council was in the dark as to how the shelter would paid for. Monday evening Mayor Andy Schor’s office released a statement showing the shelter would be financed with $250,000 Council approved, as well as another $800,000.
The $800,000 would come from money appropriated by the state in the last budget signed into law.
“City Council has not appropriated or received the funds from the state yet, and, from what I understand, we are looking at December or possibly the beginning of the new year before we even see that money.”
City officials say the funding topic was set to be discussed at an Oct. 16 meeting of the Council, but the meeting ended abruptly. Officials said the $800,000 from the state would be available in January.
“We’ve got to start working together, stop hiding stuff,” Kost says. “We have all one goal it’s serving the citizens. All citizens.”