Keene city councilors suspended the rules for two proposals at their meeting Thursday night, to skip the normal process and instead act on both measures the same night.
Typically, proposals introduced to the City Council are referred to one of three standing committees, where councilors do most of their work and the public can provide input. After the committee offers its recommendation, measures return to the council for a final vote.
But with the Fourth of July holiday and summer recess around the corner, the full council won’t meet again until Aug. 1, and on Thursday night, everyone agreed that would be too late for the two proposals on the floor.
Pho Keene Great, a French-Vietnamese restaurant that opened in the space adjacent to City Hall in April, submitted an application for a sidewalk cafe and requested permission to serve alcohol outdoors. Councilors approved the request unanimously.
City Engineer Donald P. Lussier asked councilors to move $78,000 appropriated for one project — the stormwater spot repair program — to cover unanticipated costs for the recent drainage work on Winchester and Ralston streets.
During that construction, he said, crews discovered about 170 feet of water main that will need to be pulled out and re-laid to accommodate the drainage trunk.
Councilor Philip M. Jones asked if GPS is used to locate water mains. Lussier explained that the software helps locate parts of it, but the piping can bend and curve in unseen ways between points on the map.
The council approved the request with no dissenters.