City Council considers budget, State Ave. land development

The Ames City Council's first meeting in March Tuesday comes a week earlier than the normal schedule for the other 11 months of the year.  Mayor John Haila says the meeting is pushed up to accomodate a final public hearing and passage of the city's annual budget before submission for state certification.  He says he doesn't expect any changes to the spending plan. Haila says the council will also get a staff report on residential development options for city-owned land at 321 State Ave. An initial agreement with a private developer to build out the land fell apart earlier this year. He says there are a number of balancing acts at work in the former Ames Middle School property--incuding how much, if any, of the land should be used for rental versus owner-occupied housing.  Tuesday night's meeting in City Hall starts at six.