President of Council Marjorie Harlow called Council to order on June 16, 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 May 19, 2010 and June 2, 2010 were approved with seven affirmative votes.
RESOLUTION R12-2010 COMMENDING DEBBIE CARPENTER FOR HER SERVICE AND DEDICATION TO THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE
Mr. Vanover made a motion to adopt and Mr. Squires seconded.
Mayor Webster offered congratulations to Debbie on her retirement. A lot of times people behind the scenes dont get the recognition they deserve. Debbie has been a great employee for the last quarter of a century. She replaced a lady we all dearly loved and more than filled those shoes. In all the time youve worked here I never had a resident complain about your treatment of them. Your performance has been exemplary since day one.
Mr. Vanover, Mr. Squires, Mr. Hawkins, Mr. Galster, Mr. Diehl and Mrs. Emerson all expressed their thanks to Debbie for her professionalism and friendliness.
Resolution R12-2010 passed with seven affirmative votes.
Greg Karle said this is a happy occasion for us and Debbie but there is some sadness. Debbie was there when the first computer came in and she led us through this new technology. When we added RecTrac software she was very open to change. Debbie began working here in February 1985. During Debbies tenure there have been two major expansions of the center and the addition of programs She has left her mark on our department and the entire City. We thank her for her friendship and loyal service.
Debbie Carpenter addressed Council and said it has been a joy to work here this long. I couldnt have had more fun at any other job. Thank you very much.
COMMITTEE AND OFFICIAL REPORTS
Civil Service Commission Mr. Thamann stated the Commission met June 3. The police sergeants test has been set for August 10. The senior administrative assistant position was posted internally trying to recruit a full-time employee from one of our other departments as a cost savings measure.
Rules and Laws Mr. Hawkins reported they met May 26 and the Rules of Council review committee met on June 10. We began the process of reviewing and revising the current Rules and Procedures of Council.
Finance Committee - no report
Planning Commission Mr. Galster said a wall sign for Hoxworth Blood Center University of Cincinnati at 11812 Springfield Pike was tabled until August. The next item was outdoor seasonal sales at Tri County Mall. Because of the nature of the application, a one year approval was granted. Kerry Ford proposed a paint job and new sign at the elevation that faces Kemper Road to include a quick lane oil change and auto service center. This was tabled by the applicant.
Board of Zoning Appeals Mr. Hawkins stated a variance request from the owner of 1205 Wainwright Drive to store a recreational vehicle on the property was tabled until November. An additional accessory structure (pergola) at 221 Diston Lane was tabled until July.
Board of Health - no report
O-K-I - no report
Mayors Report - no report
Clerk of Council/Finance Director Mrs. McNear reported that the outside audit was completed this week. There were no material items that have been found at this time. There will be more information to come at the next meeting. Also, we have a resolution to adopt the tax budget this evening and wed appreciate your support.
Administrators Report Mr. Parham said Jeff Williams, Jeff Forbes and I were downtown at the County Administration Building for the forfeiture land sale in an attempt to acquire the property located at 11771 Springfield Pike, known to us as the Hinton property. The process is one in which the auctioneer would identify the property in question, identify the amount of the judgment against that property and the judgment is whether property taxes had not been paid or whether there were other assessments such as the Citys demolition of the structures on that piece of property. They would offer the judgment up for auction first and no one ever bids on it. Then they would offer it as an open bid and the first bid is at $5. A number of properties were sold for $5. The highest bid I saw was $23,000. Unfortunately, we were not successful in acquiring the Hinton property. The group called Oak Leaf Realty Company, located out of Cincinnati, purchased the property for $16,000. Any assessments that were on the property prior to 2010 were identified as part of that judgment. Those all go away. However, if there are any assessments on the property in 2010 Oak Leaf will be responsible for making payment for those assessments. I dont know much about Oak Leaf Realty; however, I was able to identify that they also purchased at least two other properties, one in Woodlawn and one in Sharonville.
Mr. Parham shared with the general public that we have received many calls about the chipper program not being on schedule. We are approximately a week behind schedule. The program runs on a four-day basis, Monday through Thursday. We are primarily behind because of the recent rain storms. We are asking people to be patient with us because of the rain storms and the quantity of debris that is being set out at the curb. In addition, our employees are also working to clean out the culverts at SR 4 and Glensprings just north of Perkins. They began working on the culverts yesterday. Because of the steep grade they are unable to get a backhoe in there, so instead they have to clean it by hand. There are a number of dump trucks that were loaded to get rid of the debris. They finally finished cleaning the culverts out today. We hope to be back on schedule with the chipper some time next week.
Mr. Parham stated the Citys finance software package, tax software package as well as our payroll package are all produced by an organization called Creative Microsystems Inc. (CMI) from the Dayton area. A number of jurisdictions in the area use their products. We currently use a DOS based program. CMI has converted to a new, Windows based program. We have been notified by them that they will no longer support our finance and payroll packages after 2010 and the tax package after 2011. Mr. Williams has had a number of discussions with them relative to replacing the packages. We currently have in the 2010 budget, funds in the amount of $17,475 which is fifty percent of the cost for the finance and payroll packages. We were planning to purchase the packages this year and make the payment over a two year period. The total cost for the tax package is $16,000. We are scheduled to purchase that in 2011 and make the payment for that as well over a two year period. The issue came up when we began to discuss with them the maintenance of the new packages. Currently we pay $6,038 a year for the maintenance of those three packages in total. Their proposal for maintenance with the overall purchase price of these three packages at $51,000 was $12,700. I asked Mr. Williams to solicit bids from other vendors. In one instance, another vendor could provide maintenance for $8,200. However, in order to purchase their software, wed also have to purchase additional hardware. With this program we do not have to purchase any new hardware. The price with some of the other vendors was about $80,000. Mr. Williams and I had a discussion with representatives from CMI in an attempt to get them to lower the maintenance costs. We reached an agreement, contingent upon Councils approval of legislation, that we purchase the three packages this year and have all of them installed this year. We would pay for them over a three year period. In addition, they would lower their maintenance fee from $12,700 to $8,200 to match the other vendor. If you look at the costs over the three year period, if we adopt the new proposal, in 2010 we would spend $357 less than what we have budgeted for this year. In 2011 we would spend $8,559 less than what we were proposing to spend in 2011. However, in 2012 we would spend $8,916 more than expected to be budgeted. I would request legislation for the July 21 meeting for the new packages from CMI.
Mayor Webster said I wholeheartedly support the proposal. Normally the maintenance on a piece of software is twelve to fifteen percent. Their initial quote was about twenty-five percent which I think is way out of line. So theyve agreed to reduce the fee for the first year. What about the second and third year, etc.?
Mr. Parham responded I expressed that concern to them and they have agreed that for the three year period we are going to purchase the software, they will hold the maintenance costs at $8,200 each year.
Mr. Diehl asked are there any upgrades that come with this? Do they normally upgrade once a year?
Mr. Parham replied we have had their tax system since 1990. Weve had the finance and payroll systems since 1994. Weve not had many upgrades with the program.
Mr. Diehl commented, Mr. Mayor, in health care where I am, normally maintenance is eighteen to twenty percent.
Law Directors Report - no report
Engineers Report Mr. Shvegzda said there is no change at the SR 4 southbound lane addition at I-275, the Merchant Street repair and resurfacing, the Ross Park vehicular bridge replacement and the SR 4 south (Cameron to Sharon) repair and resurfacing projects. The Northland Boulevard repair and resurfacing project is underway with an August completion date. We have the Corps of Engineers permit for construction for the Beaver Run Creek riparian restoration. We were unsuccessful for the Clean Ohio Conservation Fund. We still have an application in to the OEPA Clean Water Fund and were expecting to hear results of that funding request in October. The Zone A flood zone study for Glensprings and Grandin field verification work and the base map have been completed. The HEC-RAS modeling for the Glensprings segment has been completed and we are finishing the Grandin segment this week. Next week we will have the base flood elevation map and well have a good picture of whats going on at that time. From there well be able to strategize specific means we need to submit to FEMA to relieve the property owners from the flood insurance requirements.
Mr. Vanover asked what is the length of term on the permit from the Corps of Engineers on Beaver Creek?
Mr. Shvegzda replied it is good for five years.
Mr. Vanover stated then if we are unsuccessful in October, if funds are available some place else, we could go through other funding sources.
Mr. Galster said at Northland Boulevard at the SR 4 intersection, if you were traveling east on Northland Boulevard coming toward that intersection, you are guided into the right lane and then just before the intersection they open the center lane for a little bit, which is where everybody is making their left turn. Once you get through that intersection, the right lane is closed and the left lane is open. The people who have been pushed over to the right, in the middle of the intersection have to switch to the left most lane, and they are making an assumption, as I saw at least three cars do today, that everybody to their left is turning left. But thats not the case. People are getting into that center lane that was created and they are trying to go forward straight through the intersection and you have people trying to merge from the right lane to the left lane and its extremely dangerous. In the intersection we have a lane change from the right lane to the left lane without any mechanism to make that happen smoothly without accidents.
Mr. Shvegzda responded it sounds like we need to at least get some additional signage up there, particularly for what has been the middle lane, which is currently being used for the left turn.
Mr. Galster stated that left turn lane is not left turn only. They are getting into that lane and then going straight. That cuts off everybody trying to shift from the right lane to the left lane in the intersection.
Mr. Shvegzda stated it is the intent that it is a left only lane but it needs additional signage up there.
Mayor Webster asked is that just temporary or is that always the way it is?
Mr. Galster replied you used to have three lanes going eastbound so you had two through lanes and a left turn lane. I dont know how long that process is going to take but I assume it has some time left. Its not safe. I was in the turn lane and the person in front of me went straight and the person beside me tried to get into the left lane once they passed through that intersection.
Mrs. McNear said I have a letter addressed to Mayor Doyle Webster. It says Dear Mayor Webster and Council Members of the City of Springdale: On behalf of the Springdale Sailfish Swim Team I would like to express our sincere thanks to you and the City of Springdale for the financial contribution to our team. Your continuous support makes it possible for our swimmers to proudly represent the City of Springdale and the Northern Suburban Swim League. Our swimmers, parents and coaches appreciate your support. Thank you for financial assistance as we prepare for our 2010 swim season. Sincerely, Debbie Stahlgren and Sharon Brooks, Springdale Sailfish Team Parent Board
Another letter addressed to Mayor Webster says: I would like to extend my sincere appreciation to you and SOS, Springdale Building Department and Nazarene Church volunteers, my good neighbor, Ken Randolph and Taylor Back, student at Princeton, and all those who participated in remodeling my little home. One, you Mayor Webster, for helping me through the process; two, the Building Department for making my application a pleasant welcoming experience; three, the Nazarenes volunteers for the painting job; four, my neighbor Ken Randolph for building flower boxes. This has been the work of a lot of time. Fifth is neighbor and Princeton student who spent weekends trimming and applying mulch. It took all of those hands and all of those marvelous people to get us to the final phase. I am so very proud to call this little house my home. I have lived in Springdale since 1958. I love the City and all those who make this such a great place to live. Thank you all. Marge Haferkamp, 517 Smiley Avenue.
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE
Mary Ellen Sullivan, community liaison person for Congressman Driehaus reported the Congressman is coming to your Community Center June 22 at 12:30 p.m. to talk about health care reform to the senior group.
ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONS
ORDINANCE NO. 23 -2010 AMENDING THE CODIFIED ORDINANCES OF THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE, OHIO, TO AMEND VARIOUS SECTIONS OF CHAPTER 153 OF THE SPRINGDALE ZONING CODE
First reading. Public hearing set for July 21.
ORDINANCE NO. 24-2010 AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH CDS ASSOCIATES, INC., TO PROCEED WITH ENGINEERING AND DESIGN SERVICES FOR THE S.R. 747 DOUBLE LEFT-TURN MODIFICATIONS TO THE I-275 RAMP F PROJECT (PID 81629) AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY
Mr. Vanover made a motion to adopt and Mr. Squires seconded.
Mr. Galster asked for the total cost of the project. I know were still making applications for additional funding.
Mr. Parham responded if we work on the basis of where the project is, the engineers estimate is roughly $300,000. The percentage of funding we have received with CMAQ funding is seventy percent with thirty percent being the local share. At that rate the federal funding we will receive is $210,000. That leaves the City of Springdales local share at $90,000. These are construction costs only. The plan is to make application for LTIP funding to assist us with covering that $90,000. There is an opportunity that has been presented to us that we may be able to receive LTIP funding that would cover up to $60,000 of the $90,000. That leaves the Citys share at $30,000 for construction. The engineering design which is before you this evening is for $33,900 and the plan is to apply for MRF funding to perhaps cover 100 percent of that $33,900 on a reimbursement basis. At the same time for the cost for the construction engineering, I understand we can apply to cover either a portion or all of that as well. That is usually ten percent of the construction costs so another $30,000. Hopefully, we will be able to capture that $30,000. If we are not able to capture the $30,000 that is construction engineering, then thats another $30,000 plus the $30,000 we talked about up front for our construction costs.
Mr. Galster said so right now, since we dont know about the other funding sources, we are looking at $90,000 in construction costs, $30,000 in construction management costs and $33,900 for the design costs for a total of $153,900.
Mr. Parham said and another $10,000 for environmental. The total cost we are potentially looking at is $163,900 of which we may be able to get covered all but $40,000.
Mr. Galster asked how long before we know what the result of that request for funding will be?
Mr. Shvegzda replied the LTIP funding request will be submitted in September and the MRF immediately before that in August. We will know by November whether we are successful for that funding. The MRF wouldnt become available to the City until March of next year.
Mr. Galster said so we will know if we are successful for that additional funding before we enter into the contract for the actual construction that puts us the $90,000, $30,000 and the $10,000. Before we commit to the balance of the unknown, we will know what that funding is.
Mr. Shvegzda stated the bid opening date is January 2012.
Ordinance 24, 2010 passed with seven affirmative votes.
RESOLUTION R11-2010 ADOPTING THE TAX BUDGET OF THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE FOR THE YEAR JANUARY 1, 2011 THROUGH DECEMBER 31, 2011
Mr. Vanover made a motion to adopt and Mr. Squires seconded.
Mrs. McNear said the County wants to know if we want to put something on the ballot to raise our tax rate. They just want to make sure that we are solvent and we do not need to change our tax rate.
Resolution R11-2010 passed with seven affirmative votes.
Mr. Parham stated at the previous meeting I distributed photographs of stop signs being combined with street signs. I dont know if youve had an opportunity to observe them, but wondered if there is any feedback. This change will not occur at every intersection throughout the community. It will just be in those areas where we think we can combine the two signs to effectively eliminate some of the poles and signs that are out there. This will not all begin tomorrow, but we will make the changes over time as we get the opportunity.
Mrs. McNear said there is one on Springdale Lake Drive and Ray Norrish. I really like the look of it. It takes a lot of clutter out of the corner. We also have a lot of semis that go up there and get lost without realizing that is a dead end street and they always clip that pole. It will be cost effective because we wont have to replace so many signs.
Mr. Diehl said Ive had positive feedback at some of the neighborhood watch meetings.
Mrs. McNear reported we have a liquor license request from Los Tres Amigos. Its in safe keeping for Huerta Enterprises at 322 Northland Boulevard. It is the same owner for both locations and it is a D5/D6 license. Id like to ask Jeff Tulloch if he has anymore information about this.
Mr. Tulloch said the individual named as CEO of the entity to which it is being transferred is the same individual it is coming from. Los Tres Amigos is dba La Plaza Tapatia and the individual is Bertha Rodriquez so this sounds like an internal transfer.
There was no objection to the transfer.
Mr. Parham said I would like Mr. Tulloch to give you a little information on the CGI video we spoke about once before.
Mr. Tulloch said at the beginning of this year we embarked on a community video program for Springdale with an entity called CGI. We have developed the text of the program, identified video opportunities for them to do some stock video that we will be providing to them, either from our records or Princeton School District records. The program produces a six minute video in six different segments. One is a welcome and that will be done by the Mayor. The next one is education which is covering Princeton Schools as well as the University of Cincinnati and some of the other colleges in the neighborhood; then quality of life, real estate relocations. This is a video that will speak to residential in the community and hopefully will be a resource for residential realtors to give to their clients. Community services are the fire, police, public works, community center and finally economic development. It will be a good marketing tool that will go on our web page so people can access it. Also, residential realtors will be able to e-mail it to clients. I will use it for businesses that are not familiar with Springdale, whether retail or office or industrial use to give them a six minute view of what Springdale is all about. The project is not costing us anything. The program is financed by subscribers to the program who have the opportunity to have their logo emblazoned on the initial page that you see. I know we have nine participants which is great compared to others Ive seen. We have Tri-County Mall, Maple Knoll, Jake Sweeney and the dentist on Kemper. The videographer will be in the City all day tomorrow and Friday. They will have the draft video to us in early August and we will have about thirty days to make any modifications, changes and give them the final go ahead. We should have it in September. I want to commend Debbie Dunfee who has done the orchestration of this. It is not all that simple deciding on what you want done, where the video should be taken, scripting, etc. If any businesses in the City would like to participate in this program they can call Debbie Dunfee at the City offices at 346-5700.
Mrs. Harlow said I noticed there is a new sign for Front Room. Can you talk about that?
Mr. Tulloch said I have talked to the owner. The owner of that real estate happens to be the founder of Sofa Express. I understand that he sold that business and that business floundered. This is a new furniture venture by the originators of Sofa Express. Its a higher end furniture store. He owns the building but he was only going to occupy for the Front Room. Now hes going to utilize the entire building. The banner you see up there is just a target for where there sign should be placed. Its not for advertising.
In response to Mrs. Harlow, Mr. Tulloch said my guess is they should be open in short order with an outside date of October because they want to be open before Thanksgiving.
Mrs. Harlow said they have a sister store called Bedrooms First so possibly that could grow into a second store in our area.
Mr. Tulloch said we do have some good movement in the retail market, some things I cant talk about right now.
Mayor Webster said I think this is really great news. This is a vacant piece of property that has been sitting there for years. As you will recall, when we did the revitalization studies, one of the strengths identified is the furniture market in this City. As Mr. Tulloch said, there are other things in the pipeline and we will have more exciting news along that same front very shortly. Retail has a long way to go and I personally have some concerns about the future of retail with the inroads the internet has made on it. At the same time we see some light at the end of the tunnel.
Mrs. Harlow asked could you give us the update on a grocery store.
Mayor Webster said a couple of weeks ago there was an article in the Sunday Enquirer about grocery stores and the dwindling number of grocery stores. It listed practically every community in Hamilton County and the number of grocery stores compared to ten years ago. Sams and Costco were listed even though they are club membership places. I think its just a matter of time until La Plaza Tapatia is recognized. They grab every available space in that plaza as it becomes open. If he continues with the way he is going, it is only a matter of time until that entire plaza becomes one big supermarket. They are getting more and more non-Hispanic shoppers and if you go in there I think you will be surprised at the variety of fruits and vegetables and meats that they have.
Mr. Tulloch stated when we had the supermarket study done, they told us at that time we would have a tough time getting an IGA, Super Value, etc. because these stores had been going out of business. They did make the point that the specialty grocery retailers like La Tapatia were the ones that tended to be growing. Also, at some point there may be an opportunity in the major retail district for a food retailer similar to Full Foods, Fresh Market, perhaps even a Trader Joes specialty markets. Its highly unlikely to get a conventional grocery store is highly unlikely.
MEETINGS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
Rules and Laws - June 18
Rules of Council - July 1
Planning Commission - July 13
Board of Zoning Appeals - July 20
Council - July 21
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
UPDATE ON LEGISLATION STILL IN DEVELOPMENT
Ordinance 23 - July 21
RECAP OF LEGISLATIVE ITEMS REQUESTED
Accepting CWW contract - July 21
CMI purchase agreement - July 21
Council adjourned at 8:21 p.m.
Clerk of Council/Finance Director
Marjorie Harlow, President of Council