President of Council Kathy McNear called Council to order on August 17, 2005, at 7:00 p.m.

 

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

 

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

 

            The minutes of July 20, 2005 were approved with six affirmative votes.

 

            SWEARING IN OF POLICE OFFICERS RITCHIE TUAZON AND RICK GRANTZ

            Mayor Webster swore in Officers Tuazon and Grantz.

 

            Chief Mike Laage said Ritchie Tuazon is from the Chicago area.  He came to Cincinnati in 1992.  His background is finance and he has been the chief finance officer for a number of companies.   Ritchie wanted to do something that was more meaningful to him.  He is now at the Great Oaks Police Academy and I have received very good reports.  Rick Grantz comes from the Hamilton area.  He graduated from Cincinnati Bible College in 2001 with a  Bachelor of Science degree.  He had just completed the Butler Tech Police Officer Training Academy in April 2005. 

 

            POLICE BIKE PROGRAM                                              -           Keenan Riordan

            Keenan Riordan reported the bike patrol program began official Memorial Day Weekend 2004.  The original members of the patrol were Officers Mike Drier, Dale Morris, Mike Schulz and me.  Officers Dreyer and Morris left the patrol in June and four new members have been assigned to the patrol, Fred Romano, Fred Simonton, Amy Campbell and Melissa Abell.   We began the program with two bikes and purchased two more in 2005 using a grant.  A fifth bike has now been purchased.  Officers ride every day but are still expected to take calls for service on their beats.  When not riding, the bikes are carried on bike racks mounted to the patrol cars.  Some of the advantages to police bike patrol are citizen contact, physical fitness, maneuverability in places cars cannot get, and stealth capacity. 

 

            Chief Laage said I accepted a large trophy at a Hamilton County Police Association meeting on behalf of Keenan.  He participated, along with Mike Schulz, in a police competition training event at Great Oaks Police Academy.  Keenan came in first.

 

            NEIGHBORHOOD BLOCK WATCH                                 -           Dave Buschmann

            Chief Laage said Dave Buschmann and Al Maupin team up in the community service office.  Both of them have worked very hard with individual programs that they have spearheaded. 

 

            Dave Buschmann stated there are 52 neighborhood watch signs throughout the City.  We currently have three active neighborhood watch groups; Beacon/Oxford Hills, Heritage Hill, and The Terrace.  We have had inquiries from The Colony and The Willows.  Typically a neighborhood watch group forms when a group of neighbors gets together and decides to form a group.  The meetings are an informal avenue for people to let us know about problems in the area.   The key to any successful neighborhood watch group is communication.  I would encourage any resident who wants to get involved in a neighborhood watch program to get in touch with Officer Maupin or me.   

 

            COMMITTEE AND OFFICIAL REPORTS

            Civil Service Commission – Mr. Strange said they heard several appeals from candidates who were being removed from the firefighters’ list.  They are going to remain off the list.  We acknowledged the appointment of two firefighters and two patrol officers.  The eligibility list for patrol officers has expired so testing will start again in the fall.  Three police officers have made it through the probationary period.

 

Rules and Laws                                                                     -                no report

Public Relations                                                                    -                no report

Public Health, Safety & Welfare                                              -                no report

 

Public Works – Mr. Wilson said the 2005 street program has been awarded to Brock and Sons Construction.  Completion is scheduled for late October.                                           

 

Public Utilities                                                                       -                no report

 

Capital Improvements – Mr. Danbury said bridge construction is underway for the CSX grade separation.  Completion of the bridge and switching the railroad tracks to a permanent alignment over the bridge should be done by the end of October.  Both bridge abutments are in place.  Project completion should be late summer next year.  Bansell Construction was low bidder for the Springfield Pike Streetscape Phase II at $619,860.  This should be completed by May 2006.  There is no change at SR 4 at Crescentville.  The Municipal Building roof project was awarded to Zero Breeze Construction.  This should be completed mid September.  Trend Construction was awarded the contract for the Chamberlin Park gabion wall reconstruction.         

 

Finance Committee                                                               -                no report

                                                                                           

Planning Commission – Mr. Gall stated the exterior fašade alterations for the Bing’s property was removed.  No one was in attendance.  Kemper Square landscaping and sign plan, 107-139 West Kemper Road was tabled.  Glenmary Home Missioners wants to construct a private drive from their parking facility to connect to Yorkhaven Road.  Because the driveway doesn’t go to a residence this will require a conditional use permit; therefore, it requires a public hearing.  We thought it was better to tie the road into Ray Norrish Drive.  The Kemper Pond landscape plan at 1311 Kemper Road was granted.  Exterior changes at Crazy Buffet, 380 Glensprings Drive, were approved.

                                                                                           

Board of Zoning Appeals – Mr. Squires reported a variance to approve 13 additional parking spaces at 171 Container Place was requested.  The spaces would be right up to the property line as that was the only place they could go.  The applicant agreed to plant a row of shrubs with two or three trees in front of their building.  The variance was granted.

                                                                                           

Board of Health                                                                     -                no report

                                                                                           

Veteran’s Memorial Committee – Mr. Wilson said they met with Katherine Raybee to discuss her assistance in helping us with fund raising activities.    We are in the process of drafting a letter of understanding between the committee and Mrs. Raybee.

 

O-K-I                                                                                    -                no report

                                                                                           

Mayor’s Report – Mayor Webster said there is an organization meeting scheduled for next Thursday with Mrs. Raybee to discuss fund raising.

                                                                                           

Clerk of Council/Finance Director                                            -                no report

 

Administrator’s Report – Mr. Osborn stated there was a bid opening for rock salt.  The lowest and best bid was by Cargill Inc., our current vendor.  The numbers are up about $5.03 a ton, an increase of about $7,000 for the budget.  We are going to fill the salt bin under the existing contract which will put our salt budget over the line item for this year.  We had significant use last year.

 

Mr. Osborn said my second request is for Council to consider legislation to amend Section 155.060 of the Springdale Code of Ordinances.  The heading of that section is keeping down noxious weeds.  Over the past few months we have had a number of issues come up related to areas that we need to take a better look at regulating.  We had a resident who chose to plant corn in the front yard.  There is nothing in the code that says they couldn’t do that.   The Mayor talked to the resident and got him to cut the corn down.  I want to thank the resident, and Mayor Webster for getting involved.  We want to incorporate where farm crops can be raised, particularly we don’t want them in the front yard.

 

Mr. Osborn said we have seen more and more frequently where houses are foreclosed on and maintenance doesn’t occur, or there may be residents in the house, but the landscaping around the house just isn’t taken care of.  Mayor Webster passed around some photos.  Some of these are exceptional.  We believe that we can lawfully regulate those types of conditions.  I’m not talking about the guy who needs to trim his hedges a little bit.  Our feeling is that the City has the ability to regulate this type of environment because it is a threat to public health.  It fosters the growth of noxious weeds and also creates a blighted condition for that property and can affect the enjoyment of their neighbors on their property.  It can also lead to damage or destruction to the property itself by the shrubbery growing too big too close to the house.  Finally, if you see some of these pictures, the trees and shrubbery have totally overgrown the windows.  If there were a firefighting situation at that residence, that landscaping would be a critical problem.   The Building Department code mandates that a certain amount of outside light be allowed into the structure.  If the windows are totally overgrown, then we’ve lost that.  We will have this before you at the next meeting for your consideration. 

 

Mayor Webster said the photos you see are what some of the problems are that exist in our neighborhoods.  This affects every house on the street, every house in the subdivision.  The problems you see in these pictures are not something that we have not tried to correct by citing those people to court.  This legislation Mr. Osborn alluded to will be a new section dealing with overgrown shrubs and weeds and vegetable crops.  At the same time we will be looking at the code.  Our code now says if you have a broken window you have to secure it.  One of the ways you can secure that is to board it up until such time that you can replace the glass.  One of these houses has had the windows boarded up for probably ten years.  The only maintenance that individual who owns the house does is when the City writes him a letter saying you’re in non-compliance.  He has no desire to sell the property, no desire to fix it up and rent it.  He is satisfied to leave the property sitting there deteriorating.  We’ve got to draw a line and pull together the harshest and most severe building code that we can get our hands on.  If this requires more inspectors I will be requesting that through the budgetary process.  Whatever we have to do we’re going to do it.  We’ve had Mr. Schneider to thoroughly review the code.  We’ve recommended some changes and he will be working very closely with Mr. McErlane to add new sections to the code.  One of the biggest problems is vacant houses.  We have a section on vacant houses but I think that’s the one that has to be embellished more than any other section.  I’m sure all of our neighborhoods are plagued with the same type problem.  We will be coming back to you for additional legislation.  We welcome any solutions or suggestions you might have as we go through the process here.  I think the problem is severe enough that we don’t want to wait and redo the whole code.  I think that would be a six to nine month process.  I think as we identify things that are really negatively affecting the neighborhood, and we can implement a section of the code to cure that, we’re going to do that. 

 

Mr. Squires asked Mr. Schneider, if we enact this can we enforce it on these places in the pictures?

 

Mr. Schneider replied yes, we can.  It is a determination of a present violation that we would be enforcing it on.  We’re looking at the shrubbery issue and we are looking at alternatives to achieve what the Mayor is seeking here.  We’ll be get back to Council within the next thirty days and try to have a plan to put into place.

 

Mr. Squires asked what kind of fines are we talking about?

 

Mayor Webster replied we have not gotten to that stage.

 

Mr. Danbury said I hope people who are cited don’t think the City is picking on them.  Just recently I had to take action against the commercial vehicles that were being parked on the street or in people’s yards.  The City extends itself very extensively to the residents.   We are doing everything we can to help the homeowner make theirs homes nicer.

Law Director’s Report                                                             -                no report

Engineer’s Report                                                                  -                no report

 

            COMMUNICATIONS

 

            COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE -     none

 

ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONS

 

Mr. Osborn said we’re in a very unique situation here.  The City is a party to this project.  When Mr. Webster was elected mayor, he identified for me his priorities for the City’s administration.  The first thing he put on the table was the revitalization of the Springfield Pike corridor, the redevelopment of our old business district.  We started undertaking projects up and down the Pike, the most long-term has been the redevelopment of that part on the east side of Springfield Pike down to Peach Street.  It began through purchases of opportunity as commercial real estate along Springfield Pike became available.  Once we had completed the United Dairy Farmer site, the acquisition of the Burns property and the redevelopment of that block, we moved into the real effort to redevelop that five acre area I just defined for you.  The City has acquired all the property bordered on the north by Kemper, on the West by Springfield Pike, the south by Peach and on the east by Walnut.  In order to bring about this development we went in search of a preferred developer.  We wanted to use our leverage as the property owner to obtain through our control, the best project we could get on this site.  The Mayor and I personally contacted probably a half dozen developers over a two-year period looking for a specific type of plan, where we would have parking in the rear and the retail out along the street.  We were able to find no one to undertake that project.  We then had our Economic Development Director put together an RFP for proposals by developers for the site.  The best proposal we received was from a group now known as Springdale Town Center LLC.  That is a partnership of Meyers Y Cooper and the Bergman Group.  They have worked with us over one and a half years developing concepts for this site.  We’ve been trying to develop it in such a way that it will be oriented toward our residential community, not the big box community of Tri-County Mall.  We have tried to absorb three or four of the existing tenants into the proposed center.  The City is certainly very concerned about a number of things.  We wanted to make sure that there is good buffering from the residential area, that there are traffic controls, that the architectural style of this center is of high quality and would set the mark for future development.  I think all of those things have been accomplished.  I’d like to turn this over to Jeff Tulloch, our Economic Development Director.  Randy Cooper is here this evening.  Randy Cooper has been the lead for them through the entire process.   He is trustworthy.  I’ve grown to appreciate his directness and honesty.  We have developed a good working relationship and believe we have an excellent partnership with Springdale Town Center LLC.  We think Mr. Cooper and his organization is probably the best situation we could come up with.  A lot of development occurs just for the turnover of the real estate.  Myers Y Cooper has a track record of buying and holding properties.  The builder will think more about how he builds that building if he knows he will have to maintain it for thirty years.  I think that is evident in some of their other sites.

 

Jeff Tulloch, Economic Development Director, said there has been a very close working relationship between City staff, CDS, Wood & Lamping, Building Department, Planning and Zoning.  We haven’t always agreed but we’re getting things resolved.  Urban renewal projects are intensely complicated.  The community and developer partnership is very important because the City has certain capacities and capabilities to allow it to be able to deal with a lot of those complications that the developer might want to shy away from.  Yet the developer has the expertise of construction, finance, etc.  When you bring them together you can end up with a good project after a lot of effort.  We had some environmental issues that had to be dealt with.  Tenants complicate things. You want to deal responsibly with the tenants.  Many of the tenants who occupy the property want to be in the project.  The urban renewal projects are inherently more complicated but they are extremely important to communities.  We do own all eighteen pieces of property.  We will be working with CDS to combine all the property into one.  With Council’s approval we will be submitting plans for final plan approval in September.

 

ORDINANCE NO. 35-2005 ”AMENDING THE ZONING CODE AND ZONING MAP OF THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE, OHIO, TO PROVIDE FOR THE REZONING OF APPROXIMATELY 5.335 ACRES LOCATED AT THE SOUTHEAST CORNER OF SPRINGFIELD PIKE AND WEST KEMPER ROAD FROM 3.049 ACRES OF GENERAL BUSINESS (GB), AND 2.286 ACRES OF RESIDENTIAL SINGLE-HOUSEHOLD HIGH DENSITY (RSH-H) TO PLANNED UNIT DEVELOPMENT (PUD) (SPRINGDALE TOWN CENTER)”

 

First reading.

 

Randy Cooper, Meyers Y Cooper Company, said we have 45,000 square feet of retail space.  There are currently eighteen curb cuts.  That will be reduced to five.  Part of the City’s objective in this project is to maintain the residential character of the homes that will remain.  In many respects we will be enhancing the residential features of the homes that remain.  The main entrance on Springfield Pike has a boulevard feel to it with a median on each side of the entranceway that runs the depth of the parking lot.  Significant landscaping occurs on both sides of the boulevard as well as a pedestrian walkway.  You will see a significant amount of landscaping along the back of the property as well as a solid masonry wall.  There will be an entrance for the residents to walk into the shopping center.  The center is residential in design and material.

 

Mr. Kevin Kock, 331 Peach Street, asked what will it be like to get into and out of the subdivision?  I heard some of the streets would be closed off.

 

Mr. Tulloch replied the only area cut off is at the end of Walnut.  You will have full access to Peach.  Plum and Cherry will be closed from Springfield Pike to Walnut.   It might be an improvement in reducing commercial traffic off of Walnut.

 

Mr. Osborn said our objectives are to maintain access for the residents but make it difficult for commercial traffic.  This is the best compromise we could come up with.

 

Mr. Danbury asked about dumpster service.

 

Mr. Tulloch responded there will be no dumpster or delivery service prior to 7:00 a.m. or after 9:00 p.m.

 

ORDINANCE NO. 36-2005 “APPROVING THE PRELIMINARY DEVELOPMENT PLAN (PUD) OF APPROXIMATELY 5.335 ACRES LOCATED AT THE SOUTHEAST CORNER OF SPRINGFIELD PIKE AND WEST KEMPER ROAD (SPRINGDALE TOWN CENTER)”

 

First reading.

 

Ed, Hickory Street, asked does the plan envision this as it, or is more commercial development planned for the area?

 

Mr. Osborn replied we don’t have any more plans for development going east towards the residential area.  If it does grow anymore we would like to see it grow to the south along Springfield Pike where there is still some older retail development.  We would oppose any commercial growth on the residential side of Walnut Street.  On Kemper Road there is a dentist office being developed.  That would be about the only other thing I could think of.   

 

 

 

ORDINANCE NO. 38-2005 “ACCEPTING A BID AND AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH TREND CONSTRUCTION FOR THE CHAMBERLIN PARK GABION WALL REPLACEMENT PROGRAM AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY”

 

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

 

Mr. Osborn reported this project was unplanned and not budgeted.  It’s the result of a wall failure on Beaver Run Creek.  This retaining wall protects residential properties in the Heritage Hill subdivision.  We have done extensive improvements along that creek but this piece is part of the oldest work we have done.  It is critical that we do the restoration.  We are very happy with the bid as it is less expensive than we had expected.  We are also pleased with the relatively low cost of alternates one and two.  These two alternates combined will cause vegetative growth on the gabion walls.  We recommend Council’s consideration of this ordinance.

 

Ordinance 38-2005 passed with six affirmative votes.

 

RESOLUTION R14-2005 “AUTHORIZING THE CITY ADMINISTRATOR TO FILE AN APPLICATION WITH THE OHIO PUBLIC WORKS COMMISSION FOR LOCAL TRANSPORTATION IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM FUNDS AND/OR STATE CAPITAL IMPROVEMENT PROGRAM (SCIP) FUNDS, AND AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO EXECUTE ALL CONTRACTS AND OTHER DOCUMENTS”

 

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

 

Mr. Osborn said we are proposing two projects for funding in the 2006 cycle.  Both are on our long-range capital improvements plan.  The first one is on SR 747 in the area of the I-275 interchange.  It is in probably the worst condition of any street in our City.  It may look okay on the surface because we keep adding asphalt to the top.  The original concrete street is down to just gravel.  The grooves in the road are a safety factor.  The proposal is for 20% Municipal Road Fund, 40% SCIP and 40% local funds.  Our estimate for this construction is $850,000 and our share would be $340,000.  The second project is Northland Boulevard repair and resurface.  We are at the point where we have to address it.  We put it on here on the off chance that we might get funding.  If this doesn’t happen under LTIP or SCIP, then we’ll probably have to absorb it into our street program in the next year or two.  The estimated cost for this project is $612,000.  The local construction cost would be $244,800.  This project will probably not score as well as the first project. 

  

Ms. Pollitt asked on the SR 747 project, does that go from the last traffic light north to the railroad track and then come south the same way?  Will ODOT be doing any repair on the ramps?

 

Mr. Osborn said we would like to encourage ODOT to incorporate the ramp into the I-275 project that is coming up in 2007 to 2008.  In addition to that, they are already doing an interchange modification study to allow for the construction of a double left turn movement from northbound SR 747 to westbound I-275.  We have to convince the State that by making this change it won’t overrun the expressway.  If you make the ramps too efficient the State will object to it because it allows too many vehicles on the expressway too quickly.  We have to prove to them that it is helping our situation but not hurting theirs. 

 

Mr. Danbury asked are the estimates based on today’s cost of blacktop?  With the cost of gasoline we could certainly be looking at a higher cost. 

 

Mr. Shuler replied these costs are based on when we expect the project to be funded and constructed. If it doesn’t get approved in this cycle then the cost will go up.

 

Mr.  Danbury asked is it possible to put a pad of concrete at a traffic light?  If you look south on SR 747 right as you’re going to Kemper Road, when it’s really hot out and semis are there, it just sinks. 

 

Mr. Shuler answered no, not in specific areas, especially going concrete to asphalt.  It creates problems for maintenance in that they act differently.  We are now putting a stiffener in the final course of asphalt so that they do not heat up and groove as they have before.

 

Mayor Webster said to start putting concrete streets in would be a step backwards. 

 

Resolution R14-2005 passed with six affirmative votes.

 

OLD BUSINESS                                                            -           none

 

            NEW BUSINESS

 

            Mr. Danbury asked if the City had classes on composting.  That would be something we could do at the Community Center.

 

            Mr. Osborn said we could certainly do that but to shortcut that, we could have the Public Works Department meet with him.  We have literature on how to compost.  During that period it was illegal to put yard waste in with your trash we tried to educate the people on how to compost.

 

            Mayor Webster said I have been notified by our magistrate, Terry Gaines, that he will not be renewing his contract as of December 1 so I will be interviewing for another magistrate.   Mr. Gaines has served the City well for the past ten years and I’ve never gotten a single complaint on how people were treated or how justice was meted out.

 

            Mrs. McNear said we have a name change for a liquor license.  It’s changing from JMB Restaurant Management LLC doing business as Su Casa Restaurant, 11711 Princeton Pike to Amigo’s Restaurant doing business at the same location.  There were no objections.

 

            Mrs. McNear said she has a letter addressed to Mayor Webster from Steve Chabot, Member of Congress:  “I’m happy to hear that Springdale’s commitment to the environment has been recognized with this prestigious award as a Tree City.  The City of Springdale has taken extraordinary steps to help maintain and improve the healthy environment and beauty of its community.  Your dedication to these forestry projects is a great asset to the City.   Once again, congratulations and I wish you the best in all your future endeavors.  If I can ever be of any assistance please do not hesitate to contact me.”

 

            Mr. Osborn said the accolades should go to the Public Works Department.  Dave Butsch is a certified arborist.  We have another employee who is a certified arborist.  And, more fundamentally, City Council for the last twenty years have been very supportive of the Urban Forestry Program.  This is our fourteenth year in a row that we have been identified as a “Tree City USA.” 

 

            PLANNING FOR BICENTENNIAL CELEBRATION

 

            Mr. Osborn said we have a plaque that is delayed so we will probably not have the dedication of the clock until the first or second week of September.  We’ll keep you informed. 

 

            Mayor Webster said we asked for any suggestions anyone would like to see incorporated into this celebration for next year. 

 

            MEETINGS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

            Board of Zoning Appeals                                     -           September 20

           

COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE       -           none

 

UPDATE ON LEGISLATION STILL IN DEVELOPMENT

 

Ordinance 35                                                                 -           September 7

Ordinance 36                                                                 -           September 7

 

RECAP OF LEGISLATIVE ITEMS REQUESTED

 

Legislation amending code                                              -           September 7

Purchase of rock salt                                                     -           September 7

Resolution for swim team                                                            -           September 7

 

Council adjourned at 9:14 p.m.

 

                                                                        Respectfully submitted,

 

 

 

 

                                                                        Edward  F. Knox

                                                                        Clerk of Council/Finance Director

 

Minutes Approved:

 

Kathy McNear, President of Council

 

 

 

__________________________, 2005