President of Council Marjorie Harlow called Council to order on February 6, 2008, at 7:00 p.m.

    The governmental body and those in attendance recited the pledge of allegiance.

    Mrs. McNear took roll call. Present were Council members Danbury, Diehl, Galster, Squires, and Vanover. Mrs. Harlow and Mr. Wilson were absent.

    The minutes of January 16, 2008 were approved with four affirmative votes. Mr. Danbury abstained. Mr. Squires said on page 8453 the property on Greencastle should be 12065 and not 12095.

    COMMUNICATIONS                     -         none

    COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE     -         none

    PRINCETON SCHOOL BOARD PRESENTATION
    Sandy Leach, President of the Princeton School Board introduced Ken Donaldson, co-chair of the bond campaign; Mary Jane KamKamerererer, Springdale’s coordinator for the bond campaign; and Donna Reese, coordinator for Heritage Hill. Ms. Hill said the board voted to put on the ballot a middle school and high school plan for $141 million. It’s a mil levy of 5.63 and would cost approximately $14 a month per $100,000 home. It’s a little less than $10 for senior citizens. Mrs. Leach showed a video relating to the bond issue. She said we are hoping to get your support for this on March 4th.

    Mayor Webster said the City is dedicated to protecting the property values of this community. For a lot of us the single biggest asset we have and will have in our lifetime is the value of our homes. I think we need to do everything possible to protect the value of that home. You’ll never make me believe that having a good, sound public education system doesn’t greatly enhance the value of your homes. The more quality educated people we can put on the street, the better off all of us are. I support this effort 100 percent.

    Mr. Galster stated in addition to the property values, the biggest thing for me is security. There are one hundred different ways in and out of the two schools. The students need to be able to leave the building in order to get from class to class. It is a major issue to be able to protect kids in a safe environment. They will be looking for an operating levy in 2009. The simple math to me was if you pass the bond and the operating levy, it would equal the same amount of mils as if the bond didn’t pass. The operating levy would be the same amount of money because they wouldn’t be able to invest the money they make from the bond and create the interest to use towards the operating levy.

    Mr. Danbury said a lot of people will say I’ve already raised my kids; I don’t want to do that. Someone else stepped up to the plate to educate your kids. It is important to provide a good education.

    Mr. Squires stated that the City Administration and Economic Development Director are working overtime to bring in business. One of the things businesses look at is schools.

    Mayor Webster said when we’re looking at tax rates there are thirty-eight taxing entities in Hamilton County and I think there are six with a lower tax rate than Springdale. We’ll still be low even with the school levy. Seventy percent of the property tax is paid by the business community. They have to have money on deposit before they can begin construction. That investment will earn interest to help offset the operating costs.

    Mr. Vanover said some people say why not remodel. It is cheaper to build new than remodel. I still have some issues but I do support this.

    Mr. Diehl said a typical home is looking at fifty cents a day for the levy.

    ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONS

RESOLUTION R6-2008 “COMMENDING MARTHA BRILLHART FOR HER DEDICATION & SERVICE TO THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE”

Mr. Danbury made a motion to adopt and Mr. Galster seconded.

Mr. Danbury said you are the greatest person in the world. I appreciate your hard work and friendship.

Mr. Osborn stated it is really hard to sum up in a resolution how valuable Martha has been to this organization. It’s been a very productive relationship. She has been a very, very competent person to work with. We’d worked together so long she anticipated what I need. She came up with points I overlooked. It’s been a great, great business relationship. I can tell you on a personal level she has been a real pillar of strength to me many times when I needed it. It’s been a true pleasure not only watching her grandchildren start to grow up, but watching her children grow up. I cannot express in words how much I appreciate what you’ve done, Martha.

Mr. Galster said I can sum up her value real easy. All I have to do is look at Mr. Osborn’s performance in the last couple of days. It’s taken a nose dive. Since the first day I walked into this building Martha has been nothing but a true professional, very helpful with anything and everything that has been put on her plate. It’s amazing how dedicated somebody can be to a job for that period of time. Mr. Osborn is very stressed during the budget process and I’m sure he’s not the easiest to work with during that time. It’s been a pleasure.

Mrs. McNear said Martha was the go-to person in the City. She is very friendly and the consummate professional.

Mayor Webster said I appreciate your effort and dedication to this City. I think you’ve always gone out of your way to make people feel very welcome. That’s what makes this a wonderful place for people to work, live and raise a family. From the bottom of my heart we are going to miss you and thank you very much.

Mr. Diehl and Mr. Squires and Mr. Vanover expressed their thanks.

Mr. Parham said Martha was extremely helpful and a very key part of our staff. We had a young lady who had financial troubles who damaged city property and we invoiced her for the damage. Martha was reluctant to invoice the young lady. She did and after a time I found out the young woman had ceased making payments but Martha had made them for her. That says a lot about her as an individual and class person. We’ve had a good friendship and I wish you well.

Resolution R6-2008 passed with five affirmative votes.

Public Hearing
ORDINANCE NO. 4-2008 “AMENDING ZONING CODE SECTION 153.710 OF THE CODIFIED ORDINANCES OF THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE AFFECTING VARIANCES”

Mr. Osborn stated this is the document we asked to have amended. In an effort to determine if a practicality exists that the board may grant some sort of variance, Item #5 under paragraph A on the attachment says “whether the property owner purchases the property with knowledge of the resolution, ordinance, regulation and measures and orders.” It implies that if they failed to have that knowledge when they purchased it, it might be a basis for a variance so I asked Mr. Schneider to put a clarification in there. It now reads “whether the property owner purchased the property with knowledge of the resolution, ordinance, regulations, measures and orders, including the fact that all property owners are presumed to have actual or constructive knowledge of all information, and that the claim by a property owner to have no knowledge of such information, shall not be a reason standing alone to grant a variance.” I want to make it clear that a lack of knowledge is not a basis for a variance. Mr. Schneider recommended that we have an amendment to the ordinance to incorporate the new language.

Mr. Danbury made a motion to amend the attachment and Mr. Squires seconded. The motion passed with five affirmative votes.

Mr. Squires made a motion to adopt and Mr. Danbury seconded.

Mr. Squires stated BZA has long been in an enigma about variances. Many times we have citizens coming before the Board of Zoning Appeals who had no knowledge that we had ordinances and resolutions pertaining to what they had built. We struggled with this. We approached legal counsel about it at one time and they gave us what you see in front of you. If you look at the original Exhibit A, number 5, you can see where the changes have been made. The board can better live with this now. They have something in front of them where they can look at a citizen and say I’m sorry, but lack of knowledge is not a reason to give you a variance.

Mr. Galster said BZA used to have steadfast regulations they were supposed to apply to every variance. By the time you looked at the thirteen different requirements everybody was required to meet, it became quite difficult to evaluate whether each one was met. A lot of this is saying that the Board of Zoning Appeals needed to sufficiently evaluate those circumstances as opposed to make sure they were 100 percent steadfastly adhered to.

Mr. Squires made a motion to adopt and Mr. Danbury seconded.

Ordinance 4-2008 passed with five affirmative votes.

ORDINANCE NO. 6-2008 “AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH STATEWIDE FORD FOR THE PURCHASE OF TWO 2008 FORD POLICE INTERCEPTOR VEHICLES UNDER THE OHIO COOPERATIVE PURCHASING PROGRAM AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY”

Mr. Galster made a motion to adopt and Mr. Squires seconded.

Ordinance 6-2008 passed with five affirmative votes.

ORDINANCE NO. 7 -2008 “AMENDING SECTION 155.073(A) OF THE CODIFIED ORDINANCES OF THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE AFFECTING MAXIMUM OCCUPANCY REGULATIONS AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY”

Mr. Danbury made a motion to adopt and Mr. Galster seconded.

Mr. Osborn said I apologize. Apparently Council did not get the attachment to this ordinance. It is a fairly benign modification to an existing law. In Section 155.073 paragraph A of our Code we currently speak in terms of maximum occupancy regulations and we just refer to size of the property. We’ve changed that word to finished square feet of the property, and in order to document where we officially get that finished square feet of the building, we inserted “as determined by the Hamilton County Auditor and/or municipal records on file with the Springdale Building Department. Consistent with that there is a table and we struck through the words “livable floor area” and inserted the words “finished square feet” and below that we struck through the line that says “in square feet.” I could make copies for you.

Mayor Webster said I think we need those. It’s a sensitive area. When we start citing people you may start getting phone calls from your constituents.

Mr. Vanover asked in a case where a change has been made without a permit, how would that be handled?

Mr. Osborn replied we wouldn’t have any knowledge of that. The only way we would have knowledge of the size of the building would be through the auditor’s records or in the permit taken to modify the structure. They would have to prove that as an affirmative defense against our charge that they are exceeding the occupancy limits. If they could make their expansion legal, but after the fact, taking the proper permit, then we probably would permit it.

Mr. Danbury said someone may have a finished basement but don’t they have to have a certain exit capacity?

Mr. Osborn responded yes, if they don’t have a sufficient exit from the basement external to the house, it would not be a permissible area for occupancy.

Ordinance 7-2008 passed with five affirmative votes.

ORDINANCE NO. 8-2008 “ESTABLISHING THE POSITION IN THE CLASSIFIED SERVICE OF PUBLIC HEALTH SANITARIAN IN THE HEALTH DEPARTMENT, ESTABLISHING COMPENSATION FOR THE PUBLIC HEALTH SANITARIAN, AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR TO FILL SAID POSITION, AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY”

    Mr. Squires made a motion to adopt and Mr. Galster seconded.

    Mayor Webster said this was a budgeted position for 2008. We have toyed with the idea for a number of years. In the past we have had a hard time finding part-time sanitarians. This time it’s because we have gotten into all this emergency response and training that the Health Department has to go through to try to react to different sorts of emergencies. We only have one full-time environmental person in the Health Department and there are more and more meetings she has to be out for and by making one of the part-time sanitarian positions full-time, it will take a load off the Health Commissioner.

    Ordinance 8-2008 passed with five affirmative votes.

    OLD BUSINESS

    Mr. Danbury reported we will have Springdale Night at the Reds on April 19th. The Springdale Chorale will sing the national anthem. The tickets are at the elementary school and also at the Community Center. The Reds said they have never had a community order that many tickets. The Reds will be part of our opening day parade and will send a mascot or a golf cart.

    Mr. Diehl asked is there an update on the property in Oxford Hills?

    Mr. Tulloch replied there have been quite a few phone calls but I don’t have a number of how many packets have been picked up.

    Mr. Galster said I think seven or eight packets have been picked up.

    NEW BUSINESS

    Mr. Osborn said The Tax Incentive Review Council, which is function of the Hamilton County Economic Development Department, convenes once a year to review the Tax Incentive Agreements that have been issued by the County. Each jurisdiction has the ability to send a representative to speak for or against the Tax Incentive Grants that have been awarded in their jurisdictions. We’ve had the Economic Development Director as one of our representatives and also the Finance Director. Mrs. McNear has agreed to be a member.

    Mr. Danbury made a motion to accept the appointees and Mr. Squires seconded. Council approved the appointees with five affirmative votes.

    Mr. Osborn said our renewal fee for membership in the Regional Planning Commission would be $3,617. Our two representatives last year were Mr. Galster and Mr. Okum. We have the option of only having one representative at a cost of $1,809.

    Mr. Danbury asked could we have one and an alternate?

    Mr. Osborn replied I don’t think they have an alternate anymore.

    Mayor Webster asked how often do you meet, Mr. Galster?

    Mr. Galster responded there was a time that we were meeting every two weeks but there hasn’t been a whole lot of activity recently. One of the reasons we originally joined was to be part of the process to make sure we were kept up to date. I recommend we only have one representative.

    Mr. Diehl made a motion to only have one representative. Mr. Squires seconded.

    Mr. Galster said Mr. Okum is on the Hamilton County Planning Commission and I’m not sure that he has a strong desire to be on the Regional Planning Commission. I’d like to have the opportunity to talk to him so that the person who has the desire to be on the board is the one we appoint so maybe we could put the vote off until the next meeting.

    Mr. Osborn stated Mr. Okum may have a seat at the table anyhow by being a member of the Regional Planning Commission.

    Mrs. McNear said why don’t we just agree on whether we want one person or not. Then we can determine who the person is later.

The motion passed with five affirmative votes.

    MEETINGS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS

    Planning Commission                         -     February 12
    Housing Board                         -     February 13
    Board of Health                         -     February 14
    Board of Zoning Appeals                     -     February 19    SYB Horse Races/Monte Carlo                 -     February 23
    Lions Club Pancake Breakfast                 -     March 15

COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE    -     none

Mr. Danbury made a motion that Council go into executive session as a meeting of the whole to discuss possible property acquisition. Mr. Galster seconded. The motion passed with five affirmative votes.

Council went into executive session at 8:32 p.m. and reconvened at 9:05 p.m.

ORDINANCE NO. 9-2008 “CREATING A CAPITAL PROJECTS FUND ENTITLED THE HOUSING REHABILITATION FUND WHICH FUND IS TO BE USED FOR SEGREGATING FUNDS IN A REHABILITATION AND REHABBING EFFORT ON BEHALF OF THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY”

Mr. Galster made a motion to adopt and Mr. Squires seconded.

Mayor Webster asked is there a reason why the word “capital” has to be used in this?

Mr. Schneider replied I’m not positive but the Finance Officer insisted that it be there.

Mr. Osborn said I’m not sure he knew what the fund is going to be used for.

Mr. Schneider said I told him. I discussed it with him today.

Mr. Osborn said I’m not sure Mr. Williams is aware that we are also looking at taking operating costs out of this fund.

Mayor Webster said let’s just pass it as is. If there is a problem with putting operating expenses in there we’ll ask you to amend the title. If we buy a piece of property and we have to maintain it for six months or a year, we want to charge it against this fund.

Ordinance 9-2008 passed with five affirmative votes.

ORDINANCE NO. 10-2008 “AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO UP TO SIX CONTRACTS WITH THE HUD ONE DOLLAR PURCHASE PROGRAM FOR THE PURCHASE OF PROPERTIES WITHIN THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY”

Mr. Galster made a motion to adopt and Mr. Squires seconded.

Ordinance 10-2008 passed with five affirmative votes.

ORDINANCE NO. 11-2008 “AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH HUD IN THE ONE DOLLAR PURCHASE PROGRAM FOR THE PURCHASE 1043 PILGRIM PLACE, SPRINGDALE, OHIO 45246 AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY”

Mr. Galster made a motion to adopt and Mr. Squires seconded.

Ordinance 11-2008 passed with five affirmative votes.

Mayor Webster said this is a new program that we’ve recently become aware of whereby HUD pulls a mortgage on a house. Once it goes through the sheriff’s sale and HUD puts the property on the market for six months and it doesn’t sell, then they are required to offer that to the local government entity for $1. That’s an exclusive right for the local government for ten days. On the eleventh day it goes back on the market. We’ve asked Council to give us the authority to act quickly on these purchases if available. We also created a fund where if we make any profits on any houses we acquire the money would go into a special fund that is earmarked to improve the housing stock in the City of Springdale.

Mr. Galster said if the City does buy a property and then sells it, it would be for owner occupied only, not for investment property and not for rental. That would be a stipulation to the deed.

Mr. Diehl said the reason we are doing this is to maintain property values.

UPDATE ON LEGISLATION STILL IN DEVELOPMENT    -    none

RECAP OF LEGISLATIVE ITEMS REQUESTED        -     none

Council adjourned at 9:17 p.m.

                        Respectfully submitted,




                        Kathy McNear
                        Clerk of Council/Finance Director

Minutes Approved:

Marjorie Harlow, President of Council



__________________________, 2007



       

City of Springdale Council


    February 6     2008