President of Council Marjorie Harlow called Council to order on
February 17, 2010, at 7:00 p.m.
The governmental body and those in attendance recited the pledge of allegiance. Mrs. McNear gave the invocation.
Mrs. McNear took roll call. Present were Council members Diehl, Emerson, Galster, Hawkins, Squires, Vanover and Harlow.
The minutes of February 3, 2010 were approved with seven affirmative votes.
COMMITTEE AND OFFICIAL REPORTS
Civil Service Commission Mr. Thamann reported they elected officers. Mr. Potts will remain as chairman; Tom Goines, vice-chair and Robert Coleman, secretary. They did a final review of the recent fire captain promotional process. Today we interviewed three individuals on the certified list. The last item of business was the approval of a request from Administration for an internal posting in lieu of a public testing for the administrative assistant position in Parks and Recreation Department.
Rules and Laws Mr. Hawkins stated they are still in the process of sifting through eight different municipalities Rules of Council.
Finance Committee Mr. Diehl said they met to review some personnel matters.
Planning Commission -rescheduled 2/23/10
Board of Zoning Appeals Mr. Hawkins said Springdale Ice Cream Beverage at 11801 Chesterdale Road was granted a variance to allow two signs, one on I-275 and the monument sign at the front of the business. Also, they were granted a variance to have their signage exceed the total square footage requirement. There was a request for a variance to eliminate a garage at 867 Castro Lane. That was passed 4-2 allowing them to eliminate the garage as long as they got the overhead door working.
Board of Health Mr. Squires said the Board of Health would like to remind the citizens that there is a city-wide blood drive through February. There was discussion of guidelines for indigent burial. I think the Board of Health deserves a commendation for what theyve done with H1N1. There were 2,322 doses administered. I understand we can have a spike in H1N1 in March and CDC is advising everyone to get vaccinated. The Hamilton County Developmental Disability event will be here March 6. The Childrens Health Fair will be May 6 and Healthy Women, Healthy Lives will be here June 12.
O-K-I - no report
Mayors Report Mayor Webster said our Police and Fire get a lot of kudos for their work and they do great work and deserve all the kudos they get. At times like this my hats off to the men at the Street Maintenance Department. In reviewing the three big storms we had on February 5, 9, and 15, it was an extraordinary effort where these guys were out for thirty-six hours, twelve on, twelve off and twelve back on. Overall, we spent $37,500 in salaries, some of that is overtime. Weve gone through 1,200 tons of salt, 2,000 gallons of calcium. We have used no sand up to this point. The total storm cost for January/February was $98,515.89. Last week we took delivery on 300 tons of salt. We can get more if necessary. We embarked upon the mandatory furlough for employees and also a concentrated effort to reduce overtime. We have asked the non-union employees to sign a waiver to take comp time instead of overtime. All but one employee have signed on to that. That was voluntary. The cap on comp time is 68 hours before going into overtime. We have folks who are in overtime and we are not going to ask Council to move that cap. Those guys deserve that and my hats off to the effort that they have given up to this point, getting called out at 3:00 or 4:00 in the morning and not seeing your family, on for twelve hours , off for twelve and back on for twelve hours. They deserve whatever overtime they earned.
Mr. Vanover said I was out the other day and one of the guys was doing our cul del sac. He was diligent in trying not to bury our driveways. It also helped that we had most of the cars off the street.
Mayor Webster said I have not gotten a single call from residents complaining about the streets other than people on cul de sacs where the plow has to make a ninety degree turn and the snow is in somebodys driveway. I feel sorry for those people but the snow has to go somewhere. The poor guy driving the truck doesnt have a whole lot of options so I just ask people out there please be patient and tolerant.
Clerk of Council/Finance Director Mrs. McNear said the annual audit begins next month.
Administrators Report Mr. Parham stated I want to share some information with Council as well as the general public relative to snow emergencies. This has been an unusual winter event with the number of snow storms we experienced. As the Mayor indicated, we have had a couple of call outs of our personnel that have lasted as much as thirty-six hours of continuous snow removal and some a little less than twenty-four hours. As he indicated, they have done an outstanding job coming out and addressing that while most of us are still at home or at our place of employment. When we speak about snow emergencies, there are three levels of snow emergencies.
The first level of a snow emergency is more of a snow advisory that indicates the roadways are hazardous with blowing and drifting snow, and that our snow equipment is out at work. We are trying to clear the streets. There is no mandate at that point about removing vehicles from the roads. It is strongly encouraged that you remove your vehicles because it will make for an easier process in removing the snow from the streets. If you can imagine during the multiple day snows we encountered this time, typically in the beginning of that snow period our folks are simply out plowing. They are not dropping much of the material because if you continue to drop material you just waste it because there was so much snow coming down. There were a couple of instances where we heard we were receiving between five and eight inches of snow over these last snow storms. As we get close to the projected time of the conclusion of that snow storm, then we begin to drop the salt and calcium and work towards clearing the streets. If you were out there today, the streets are very clean and very passable. I actually go out and drive some of the streets and only on one occasion did I feel we needed to get the guys back out. In a Level One snow advisory we prefer that you remove your cars but its not a mandate. Ordinance 35-1988 gives the Mayor the authority to declare a snow emergency for the community.
Mr. Parham said when we get to a Level Two snow emergency, it says the roadways are hazardous with blowing and drifting snow but it then goes on to say that only those who feel it is necessary to drive should be out on the roadways. It encourages you to contact your employer to see if you actually should report to work. At this point, there is no parking on the snow emergency routes. We have a map that shows the designated snow emergencies. Not every street is designated as a snow emergency route. But on those streets delegated as snow emergency routes, when we go into a Level Two as we did on the storm of the 9th and the storm of the 15th, it is mandatory for you to remove your vehicle from the street. If you do not remove it within a certain period of time, which I think is three hours after the snow emergency has been declared, if between the hours of 6 a.m. and 8 p.m., then we may have to begin towing and citing those vehicles. If it is after hours then it is after 9 a.m. that you have to remove your vehicle. For the February 9th and 15th snow storms we did use our Code Red system. Everyone should be signed up. If not, feel free to go to our website and you can scroll down. There is an indication where you can fill in your contact number. You can list your cell phone number, your home phone and work phone number. I was just on the phone with the folks from Code Red this week. You even have the ability to receive the message via text as well as through an e-mail. We strongly encourage everyone to sign up for the program. We did institute a Level One snow emergency on February 9th at 8:53 a.m. and about two hours following that we issued a Level Two. We will sort of mirror the City of Cincinnati to see if they go under a snow emergency, but not all the time, because as you can see, there may be a storm south of us in Cincinnati and our roads just arent that bad, so we do not issue one at that point. However, we will still function as if there is one, not to the extent that we require you to remove your cars but we are encouraging you to remove them if our plows are out there working. For the February 15th storm we really didnt have time to go into a Level One. We went directly into a Level Two. By that time the City of Cincinnati as well as Hamilton County had issued a Level Two snow emergency. That happened about 10:30 a.m. on the 15th. Level Three snow emergency is far stricter. Level Three indicates that all municipal township, county and state route roadways are closed to non-emergency personnel. No one should be out during these conditions unless it is absolutely necessary to travel. Those traveling on the roadways may subject themselves to arrest. The Level Three snow emergency is authorized and declared by the Sheriff of Hamilton County in the State of Ohio. Whether we are in Level Two or Three, those are mandates for you to remove your vehicles if you are home and if you are in one of the designated snow emergency routes. There should be signage posted on your street that indicates whether or not your route is a snow emergency. On some streets there may be no parking on one side. On the other side you are generally able to park; however, during a mandated snow emergency, if there is a posted sign there, you are required to remove your vehicle. You are not allowed to park on the street. The last thing we want to do is get in the position of towing vehicles. As you drive throughout the community, you will notice that a number of our residents have two-car garages, but for some reason they have chosen to leave that vehicle on the street, but we want to plead with you tonight that if indeed you fit that occasion, that you remove your vehicle from the street. It would make for a much easier process for our folks to get through at a more rapid pace, clear the roads and make it more passable when its such a time for individuals to get back on the road. We talked about the driveways. One of the biggest complaints we do receive is that were blocking your drives, but I think as the Mayor and Mr. Vanover stated, the snow has to go somewhere. Our responsibility is to clear that pathway. If we dont clear the roads, it doesnt matter if you clear your driveway. You have nowhere to go. Its very similar when we focus on the primary streets. We clear those first, then we go to the secondary and get those streets cleared. That gives you the opportunity to leave and transverse to wherever you need to go.
Mr. Parham stated Ordinance 6-2010 is on the agenda tonight. We opened bids for the Northland Boulevard repair and resurfacing project on February 10th. There were six bidders in total. We have on the agenda tonight legislation to authorize a contract with Adleta Construction with an emergency clause. If you recall, we are receiving funding under the stimulus program of $950,000. As you see in my pending legislation report, the base bid for Adleta came in at $797,044.04. The Alternate 1 bid came in at $37,452.50. The Alternate 1 part of this project is a total replacement of a section of existing concrete based asphalt surface pavement on Northland Boulevard near the intersection of Northland and Kemper. We are planning to remove the concrete base and asphalt, and then replace that with a total concrete section. It gets wear and tear from a lot of the buses. As part of the recommendation from the City Engineer, I encourage Council to approve that legislation tonight so we can spend the $950,000. In my legislation report I think I indicated to you our understanding that ODOT is going to institute a ten percent contingency amount but that still keeps us under the $950,000. With $32,000 remaining, our hope is that we can use those dollars towards anything that happens to arise on the construction project, but if not, perhaps we would be able to use that for the construction engineering part of the project.
Mr. Parham said the third item is an update as to where we are with the Springdale Hotel situation. We anticipate forwarding citations using the State Fire Marshalls process against Shubh Hotels as well as Anupt Pillai, who represents Shubh Hotels in the Pittsburgh area. Atul Basaria is the owner of Shubh Hotels and he is in Boca Raton. We plan to send the citations first thing tomorrow. According to the Fire Chief, they have to be delivered to the post office to be delivered. Once we file the citations, the owner has thirty days to respond. If after those thirty days they have not responded, the City will then go before the Ohio Board of Building Appeals in Columbus to begin the process of forcing this property to sell. I think we have communicated before that there is a thought that the City could have taken control of the hotel. That is not proper. The process is one that through the Fire Marshalls Office, can force the sale
of the property and then the proceeds go to pay off the debt, or perhaps to make improvements to the property itself. We have received contact again from the attorneys representing the bank who have requested a copy of our reports. We are still finalizing reports but once we finalize those we will forward a copy to the attorney for the bank. We would encourage the bank to come in if the actual owner doesnt, but we want someone to make the improvements to that hotel to get it back into an operational status.
Mr. Parham continued I was contacted this week by Princeton School District. They would like to have a representative at the March 17meeting of Council. They are not sure if it will be the superintendent or one of the board members but they asked to be placed on that agenda.
Mrs. Harlow asked would you let them know we would be happy to have them on our agenda for the 17th.
Law Directors Report - no report
Engineers Report Mr. Shvegzda said the plans are in to ODOT for the SR 4 southbound lane addition. Unfortunately, quite a few of their personnel act as snow plow drivers so they are behind on getting that out to us. We are hopeful to get that bid out this month. As Mr. Parham had mentioned, we had the bid opening for Northland Boulevard and that legislation is before Council tonight. The Beaver Run Creek riparian restoration project field work is completed. The plans are underway and we do anticipate getting our permit yet this month with the final plans and specifications to be complete in early March. The Merchant Street repair and resurfacing is scheduled for plans and specifications to be completed this month. Ross Park vehicular bridge replacement plans from 2001 are being revised to reflect the current field conditions and those are expected to be completed by mid March. SR 4 repair and resurfacing between Sharon and Cameron is a project we had ODOT urban paving commitment on. That had been delayed because of funding issues and was postponed until 2013. With the most recent request for projects to be submitted for the potential stimulus funds (Jobs for Main Street Act) we submitted that project and it was selected for what they call the under ninety day projects. The project was selected for that category and we have a meeting tomorrow with ODOT to review the process and the scope. The tentative award on that project is $401,500. With minor modifications and passage of the bill that could be under construction this summer.
Mrs. McNear said I have an opportunity from the Ohio Municipal League, a seminar for newly elected Council members. The closest one geographically to Springdale is Kings Island Resort in Mason on Saturday, March 6. For newly elected officials, if you are interested see me after the meeting and Ill give you a copy of this information.
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONS
ORDINANCE NO. 6 -2010 ACCEPTING A BID AND AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH ADLETA CONSTRUCTION FOR THE NORTHLAND BOULEVARD REPAIR AND RESURFACING PROJECT AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY
Mr. Vanover made a motion to adopt and Mr. Squires seconded.
Ordinance 6-2010 passed with seven affirmative votes.
Mr. Parham said at the last two meetings there were questions relative to lighting at the Kenn Road overpass. Mr. Shvegzda checked with ODOT and they have indicated that they do intend to place seven luminaries in the area. I believe a couple of the fixtures are up now and I expect in the spring they will be back to energize those.
Mr. Vanover stated I would like to introduce Teresa Pardiecks name for Charter Revision. She lives on Castro and is a lifelong resident.
A resolution will be brought forth at the next Council meeting.
Mrs. Harlow said once we get that taken care of, I will talk with Mr. Bush and ask him to set up a meeting with the existing members and two new members.
MEETINGS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
Rules and Laws - February 23
Planning Commission - February 23
Board of Health - March 11
Board of Zoning Appeals - March 16
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
UPDATE ON LEGISLATION STILL IN DEVELOPMENT
Electronic Sign ordinance - March 3
Resolution for Martha Zimmerer - March 3
Mr. Diehl announced he would be absent March 3.
RECAP OF LEGISLATIVE ITEMS REQUESTED
Appointing Teresa Pardieck to Charter Revision - March 3
Mr. Parham said Princeton School representative would like to come in March 3rd, not the 17th.
Council adjourned at 7:40 p.m.
Clerk of Council/Finance Director
Marjorie Harlow, President of Council