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††††††††††† President of Council Kathy McNear called Council to order on February 16, 2005, at 7:00 p.m.

 

††††††††††† The governmental body and those in attendance recited the pledge of allegiance.†† Mr. Knox gave the invocation.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Knox took roll call.Present were Council members Danbury, Galster, Pollitt, Squires, Vanover, Wilson and McNear.

 

††††††††††† The minutes of January 19, 2005 were approved with seven affirmative votes after correcting the spelling of Monay Mack.

 

The minutes of February 2, 2005 were approved with six affirmative votes. Ms. Pollitt abstained.

 

††††††††††† COMMITTEE AND OFFICIAL REPORTS

††††††††††† Civil Service Commission††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† -†††††††††† no report

Rules and Laws††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† -†††††††††† no report

Public Relations††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† -†††††††††† no report

Public Health, Safety & Welfare†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† †††† -†††††††††† no report

Public Works††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† -†††††††††† no change

Public Utilities††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† -†††††††††† no report

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Capital Improvements Ė Mr. Danbury reported the final plans were submitted to ODOT on the streetscape project.Construction will begin this summer.

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Finance Committee††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† -†††††††††† no report

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Planning Commission Ė Mr. Galster there was a request for approval for a proposed Sprint PCS antenna on top of the Howard Johnson sign at 400 Glensprings Drive and conditional use permit for access through a residential property.That was approved 7-0.Approval of a driveway that has four connections to the street at 11475 Walnut Street was tabled at the applicantís request.Approval of a proposed sign for National City Bank, 495 East Kemper Road was approved.We had a condition on the building on SR 4 because of the blue band with a green roof.They now have green letters on the sign so we removed that condition.Approval of a proposed Macy sign at 11700 Princeton Pike was approved.

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Board of Zoning Appeals†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† -†††††††††† no report

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Board of Health Ė Ms. Pollitt said the Board of Health meeting was routine.She said the 2004 annual report was in the packet and they did a fantastic job.I would like to commend them for that.

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Mr. Danbury said the cell phone business is really booming.Are there any provisions we have that the cell phone tower owners would take down the existing towers and put up something more aesthetically pleasing if new technology comes out?

 

Mr. Galster replied if the tower becomes unused they have to remove it.That was part of the original agreement.We canít actually prevent them from putting towers up.

 

Veteranís Memorial Committee††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† -†††††††††† no report

 

O-K-I Ė Mr. Knox said they announced that they are going to have public meetings and the public is invited to participate and let the people from OKI and ODOT know what people would like the transportation system to look like thirty years from now.The meeting in Hamilton County will be held at the OKI Regional Council of Governments location on Pete Rose Way on March 9, 7-9 p.m.When I-74 is worked on they are going to put up a system that will include ramp monitors.

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Mayorís Report††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† -†††††††††† no report

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Clerk of Council/Finance Director Ė Mr. Knox announced that the tax forms have been mailed.If someone has not received a form please contact the Tax Department and have them send one to you.Anyone nineteen years of age and older must file a tax form even if you donít pay taxes to the City of Springdale.

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Administratorís Report Ė Mr. Osborn asked Mr. Tulluch to talk about the Old Town project as it relates to the Clean Ohio Grant.

 

Mr. Tulloch said the Clean Ohio Grant is administered by EPA and the Ohio Department of Development.In past years they have funded projects up to $3 million for remediation, infrastructure improvements, demolition and land acquisition for brown field and gray field developments.We met with the Payne Group, an environmental firm, who determined that Old Town would have a very strong opportunity to obtain some of those grant funds.The downside is that we would have to adjust the schedule out and probably not start until 2006.The EPA determined that the amount of funds that could be used for land acquisition would be severely restricted to the extent that it would probably cost us close to the same to obtain the grant from application costs, schedule being put off, etc. that the grant would benefit us.Therefore, we have decided not to proceed with that grant program.Another provision said if the funds were used for land acquisition, you could not sell the land for ten years.That doesnít make a lot of sense since the program is intended to resurrect brown fields, gray fields, and get them back in the private sector for redevelopment.They did withdraw that.The project is not contingent upon it.It just makes it a better economic project for the City and developer so we will look for other sources of funds and we are back to our original schedule of starting this September.

 

Mr. Osborn said the Cincinnati Metropolitan Housing Authorityís senior housing project on SR 4 has gone out for bids.In addition, they are putting together their financing plan for the project.They have the option of going after tax exempt bonds, but another alternative, applying for tax credit increments from the Ohio Housing Authority would probably yield them a better result.†† They can remarket those tax credits and absorb the benefit of the profit into the project.They will be before you at the next Council meeting.There will be a resolution requested by them to endorse their application for the tax credits under the Ohio Housing Financing Agency.

 

Mr. Osborn stated we will have legislation before you at the next meeting regarding the next phase of the contract for the Tri-County Business District Revitalization Plan.We brought in a comprehensive proposal from the consultant and chose only to implement the first part of it.Now we want to tell you why itís time to move forward with the balance of that study.Mr. Tulloch is working with Mr. Ichelbaum on finalizing the details of the proposal and agreement.As soon as they reach a satisfactory conclusion to those negotiations, Mr. Tulloch and possibly Mr. Ichelbaum will be laying that program out before you on March 2.I want to emphasize that I think it is very important that we continue placing a great deal of emphasis on this particular exercise.We cannot just assume that because Tri-County Mall apparently is going to be given some additional investment in physical appearance, that thatís going to stimulate our business district significantly.I think it will have a positive influence but I think we need to build off of that positive influence and take it to other properties.The purpose of this revitalization plan is to come up with a strategic plan on how we can sustain and improve our retail business district.

 

Mr. Osborn continued there is material in your packet from the First Suburbs Consortium of Southwest Ohio requesting we discuss the Greater Ohio legislative agenda.I request that we do that under Old Business.

 

Mr. Osborn said I would like to give you an update on the issue of the sound walls and our discussion with ODOT.After the last Council meeting I was to contact Mr. Jindhal and inquire as to whether the Ohio Department of Transportation would add just that wall on the north side along the Summerfield exposure to the expressway.We both talked to their consultant, LJB, and according to them, an earthen berm is not physically possible at that location.Secondly, itís still possible to put the sound wall there because it has already been designed into the project.Mr. Jindhal said he would verify with the Federal Highway Administration that they would allow us to put in only part of the recommended wall.He was concerned that they would say you have to put in all of it or you have to select not to have any of it.The Federal Highway Administration has a new administrator and when the question was put to him, his conclusion was that there isnít any basis for a local option here.If the residents that are impacted by the federal highway project desire the walls, then the walls will be built.It doesnít go to a decision as to what the local jurisdiction wants.The administrator in Washington made a reference to the environmental laws.If a federally funded project is going through a wetlands area and the local jurisdiction didnít want those wetland federal regulations enforced, the federal highway is not going to waive those.Heís drawing the same conclusion here, that the local jurisdiction has no authority in making this decision.The other understanding in the past is that Ohio is a home-rule state, which grants the right of home-rule to the local jurisdiction.†† Because Ohio is a home-rule state, ODOT always felt that the local jurisdiction would have the authority to make a decision on a matter like this.Federal Highway is saying that is not the case.So, as it stands right now, all the walls will be built.There wonít be any exception.You say that the majority of residents wanted it, but my elected officials are saying that the sample was too small, and there was a very low percentage response from that sample area.I asked does that factor in at all to the conclusion?He replied no, because it was an open sample and everybody had the opportunity to respond.If they chose not to, then they passed on their opportunity to express themselves.He did offer to organize a meeting with Springdale officials and Federal Highway to discuss this issue.I asked him if he thought it would alter the outcome and he said itís very unlikely.I would have to say, right now, the issue has been decided by Federal Highway and that the walls will be built.

 

Mr. Danbury asked how did they determine the affected residents?From my understanding itís just going to spread it out more.

 

Mr. Osborn replied I donít have a good answer for that.We didnít get into those kinds of details.I think you heard as much as I did the night the ODOT people were down here.I donít know how they determine the first 500 feet from the edge of payment as their measurement for the impact area.I donít know what success we would have arguing that the sample area should have been bigger.

 

Mr. Danbury said I wonder how this would affect the signage we have out there.

 

Mr. Osborn responded it wonít happen in commercial areas. The pole signs will be high enough.

 

Mr. Wilson said my concern still revolves around what affect these walls will have on residents over 500 feet away in terms of decibel count.No one has been able to tell us what kind of effect that will have.That should be considered too.

 

Mr. Squires asked is Springdale going to have a choice in the design of the walls?

 

Mr. Osborn replied I think we could still have some say in the texture of the wall.The wall starts in Forest Park and proceeds into Springdale.If we chose pattern separate from what Forest Park does, they may not allow us to do that.

 

Mr. Osborn said Mr. Jindhal is willing to organize a meeting between the Federal Highway agency and some representatives from Springdale.Let Mr. Parham know who wants to go and Mr. Parham will set it up.

 

Mr. Osborn said the spot blight ordinance is in progress.It is intended to address some very critical problem areas that have not been responsive to our normal citations and orders from the Building Department and that have been on-going and chronic.The idea would be to give the City the ability to acquire these properties through condemnation and then remarket them.The process is for the City Administration to identify particular properties, make the recommendation to City Council, give the property owner the opportunity to appear before Council in an administrative hearing format to give their opinion as to why they should not be subject to condemnation.If Council agrees with them or believes that there are other alternatives short of acquisition by the City, you then make that decision.If you decide the only way to resolve this problem is for the City to pursue an acquisition through condemnation, then that would be the course taken.At that point we would go through the regular court process which still gives the property owner his/her rights at trial in the Court of Common Pleas.This is a measure of last resort when there is nothing left to address what we have identified as a critical sight.There are two or three around the City that anybody can think of.In one case we have cited the owner to court approaching twenty times over the last ten years and many other orders beyond that.We will have the first reading of this ordinance on March 2.

 

Mr. Osborn said the next two pieces of legislation deal with an issue that came to our attention last week; that is, the parking of commercial vehicles in residential districts. There was a situation in the Beacon Hills area where a resident has begun parking tow trucks and operating a towing service out of the residence.They may work for another company but they are dispatched from their home.We looked at the situation with the Building Department, Fire Department and Police Department to try to identify what violations we saw there.The only violations of code that we saw were the use of an extension cord from the house to a truck parked on the street, which is a violation of the fire code.There was a tow truck parked in the driveway on private property, which is not allowed.They have been given until tomorrow evening to discontinue that practice.If the vehicle is still parked there Friday morning they will be cited to court.We are hoping that through direct contact with them that it will be better for them to find alternatives rather than contest this issue with the City.We had a representative talk with them today.This has caused us to take a hard look at our regulations and how they address this issue.I think there are things we can do to make our code stronger.We need to improve our Zoning Code as it relates to parking of commercial vehicles on residential property.It was fortunate for us that this vehicle met the definition of commercial tractor.Had it been a big step-van it wouldnít have met that definition and we wouldnít have been able to anything about it.Secondly, there are no limitations on parking commercial vehicles on public streets.There are certain weight limitations and certain width on the street but they typically deal with tractor trailers.We are also proposing that we amend our parking regulations as they relate to parking of commercial vehicles in residential districts.Our proposal is to have the draft Zoning Code reviewed by staff and our Law Directorís office by March 1.It would be before you on March 2.The intent there would be for Council to discuss it and recommend it to Planning Commission for their March 8 meeting.In order to expedite this we would also start the advertising for the public hearing on March 4.I know thatís jumping the gun a little bit but we are just trying to contract the amount of time the process is going to take.The idea would be for a first reading on March 16 with a second reading and public hearing on April 6.Assuming it is adopted on April 6 there is a thirty day period before it goes into effect.We will also be making recommendations on the parking regulations and we want them to become effective just a little bit later than the Zoning Code for legal reasons. The first reading on the parking regulation would be April 20 with a second reading May 4.It would have an emergency clause but we would like the effective date to be May 7, the day after the zoning regulation.

 

Law Directorís Report††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† -†††††††††††††† no report

Engineerís Report††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† -†††††††††††††† no report

 

††††††††††† COMMUNICATIONS

 

††††††††††† Mr. Knox stated each member of Council and the Administration received a certified letter from CMHA.Baldwin Grove is going to go forward.Ninety-five percent of the units would be low income; five percent would be extremely low income.The final paragraph says we have the right to submit to OHFA regarding the projectís impact on the community.ďIf you plan to submit a letter of disapproval or objection you must submit a written statement signed by a majority of voting members, etc.ĒI take it Council will not be sending an objection or letter of disapproval.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Osborn said we probably will be writing a letter of endorsement.In addition to the request for a resolution they have also sent us a request for an endorsement from the Administration.There were no objections from Council members.

 

††††††††††† COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE

 

††††††††††† Richard Goetz, 805 Cedarhill Drive; Tera Hamilton, 812 Cedarhill Drive, Gary Thompson, 804 Edarhill Drive;and Ed Knox, 881 Yorkhaven all expressed concern about the tow truck being parked on Cedarhill Drive that is causing a safety problem.Mr. Goetz thanked Mr. Osborn and Mr. Wilson for their effort on this issue.

 

††††††††††† David Traut, 845 Summerfield Lane, said thank you for your decision on the tow truck.I live on Summerfield and that is a problem.I really came down here for the noise walls.If you have that meeting, are non-members of Council invited and would you be willing to allow me to join you?

 

††††††††††† Mr. Osborn responded if we want to have a frank discussion with ODOT and the Federal Highway I would think it would be among the public officials.This is not intended to be a public forum.Itís intended to be a meeting with the Federal and state officials to see if we can get a better understanding of their opinion and decision.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Traut said if Iím not allowed to attend, take a close look at the zones that are in the ODOT report.Many of the zones that are identified there do not exceed the Federal Highway Administration or EPA noise limits.

 

††††††††††† Mrs. McNear said after we have this meeting, I would think we would have another public meeting to report any of the findings that we have.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Vanover stated I think, after talking with Mr. Osborn and his interpretation, I donít think there is going to be a need for a public hearing after the fact because I think itís a moot point.I think the walls will be there unless we hear otherwise.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Danbury said when we are dealing with an issue such as the commercial trucks, sometimes there is just basic commonsense.Iím not saying this is the case here but a lot of times people just go a little overboard.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Galster said there has been a lot of talk about this location but there are other locations in the City.This is not designed for this one individual.

 

OLD BUSINESS

 

††††††††††† Mr. Osborn said I would like to direct your attention to the Greater Ohio Action Agenda.The First Suburbs Consortium of Southwest Ohio is formed to create and lobby for legislation at the State level that will benefit existing communities as opposed to encouraging green field development.Their very first tenet is a fix it first policy towards Ohio roadways.In order to benefit from work already being done by an independent non-profit group, the Greater Ohio Action Agenda, which is a state-wide organization,reviewed the agenda for that group and identified those tenets that relate to the mission of the First Suburbs Consortium.The elements of this are all consistent with the idea of letís encourage the redevelopment of existing cities; letís put our money into maintaining the infrastructure we have as opposed to building new construction or creating new development and reducing money available to maintain roadway systems, sewer systems, water systems that we currently have in place.We would like to have a motion affirming that Springdale City Council supports the proposed Action Agenda and this motion would go via Mr. Tulloch to the First Suburbs Consortium at their next meeting.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Danbury made a motion affirming Springdaleís support for the First Action Agenda.Mr. Wilson seconded.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Galster said there are actually some situations where green field projects are actually given an encouragement with a higher rating than redevelopment.Itís trying to make them re-think that we need to take care of existing situations but also do not reward green fields and penalize brown fields.

 

††††††††††† Mr. Knox said as a member of OKI I am also a member of the Land Use Planning Commission.The objectives of the Land Use Commission are very similar to whatís in this document.

 

††††††††††† The motion passed with seven affirmative votes.

 

††††††††††† NEW BUSINESS††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† -†††††††††† none

 

††††††††††† MEETINGS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††

††††††††††† Board of Zoning Appeals†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† -†††††††††† March 15

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COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE††††††††††† ††††††††††† - ††††††††† none

 

UPDATE ON LEGISLATION STILL IN DEVELOPMENT

 

Spot blight ordinance††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† -†††††††††† March 2

Tri-County Business District Revitalization††††††††††††††††††††††††††† -†††††††††† March 2

Parking of commercial vehicles in res. Neighborhoods†††††††† -†††††††††† March 2

Resolution of support for CMHA†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† -†††††††††† March 2

 

RECAP OF LEGISLATIVE ITEMS REQUESTED

 

See above

 

Council adjourned at 8:08 p.m.

 

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Respectfully submitted,

 

 

 

 

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† EdwardF. Knox

††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† Clerk of Council/Finance Director

 

Minutes Approved:

 

Kathy McNear, President of Council

 

 

 

__________________________, 2005