Raleigh City Council will retreat at home after all

colin.campbell@newsobserver.comJanuary 30, 2014 

— Thanks to snowfall stretching to the coast, supporters of an in-town Raleigh City Council retreat will get their way: City leaders have called off Thursday’s trip to Wilmington.

Instead, the two-day planning retreat will be held just a few blocks from city hall at the Raleigh Convention Center. Officials announced the venue change Wednesday afternoon, citing hazardous road conditions between Raleigh and the coast.

City Manager Ruffin Hall said Raleigh leaders contacted state Department of Transportation and the New Hanover County Emergency Management department and were told a drive to Wilmington would be unwise Thursday morning.

The change is likely to save the city money. About $3,500 of the retreat’s $13,000 cost was expected to go toward hotel rooms and meeting space. At the Raleigh Convention Center, the only cost will be meals, Hall said.

Two council members who had been critical of the retreat plan had cited cost as a reason to stay home.

Hall said he’s not yet sure how the last-minute cancellation at the Hilton Riverside hotel in Wilmington will affect the city’s contract with the facility. “We are going to be working on alternatives to make sure there is not a financial impact,” he said.

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