President of Council Marjorie Harlow called Council to order on December 5, 2007, at 7:00 p.m.

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

    Steve Galster was sworn in by Law Director Ken Schneider. Mrs. Harlow stated that Mayor Webster, Clerk of Council Kathy McNear and Councilpersons Jim Squires and Bob Diehl were sworn in on December 1.

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

    The minutes of November 21, 2007 were approved with seven affirmative votes.

    COMMUNICATIONS

    Mrs. McNear read a letter from the Government Finance Officers Association:
“We are pleased to notify you that your comprehensive annual financial report for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2006 qualifies for a Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting. The Certificate of Achievement is the highest form of recognition in government accounting and financial reporting, and its attainment represents a significant accomplishment by a government and its management.” The letter said the Certificate of Achievement plaque would be sent to Jeff Williams.

    Mrs. McNear read another leader from Duke Energy stating that Duke Energy Ohio will file an application for an increase in rates with the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio in 2008. The application will propose an increase in rates of approximately $8.4 million for Rider AMRP (Accelerated Main Replacement program Rider for DE-Ohio’s gas distribution service to be effective in May 2008. The increase will result in an additional charge of $1.15 per month for residential customers and represents an increase in DE-Ohio’s gas rates of approximately 1.4%.

    Mayor Webster read a letter: “Dear Mr. Webster: I should say Doyle because my other name is Stikeletter and we both really know each other. I’ve always voted for you and you performed my marriage to Jerry Shepherd in 2001. I wanted to say I am moving back into the best city, Springdale, only because it is run by experienced people who care about the residents in the City. All the people are profession and keep the City clean, non-blight, uphold the laws with great police work. City Council all have a great outlook and is a wonderful asset to the community. They provide accurate information in a businesslike manner and meeting ready without many pauses and paper shuffling like some other Council meetings. Thank you for the whole Springdale source for making all the beautiful improvements. Sincerely, Doris Shepherd, 435 Grandin Avenue”

    COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE

    Julie Matheny, Executive Director Springdale Chamber of Commerce said I would like to express my accolades to the City for their foresight in constructing a Veteran’s Memorial site for the City. We are a very well rounded community which is blessed to have almost a third of our population as seniors. Many of these people have lived here all their lives, as well as their parents and grandparents. A lot of these people have a history of veterans in their families who have dedicated their lives to the many rights we all enjoy today. There is not a day that goes by that I do not thank those people for fighting for our country and making my life so easy today. As most of you know, the Chamber of Commerce is a non-profit organization, as is the Veteran’s Memorial but we try to help out whenever we can. We recently held our annual gift basket raffle which consisted of $1,000 worth of products and services, all donated by our Chamber members. We decided in June that part of the proceeds would be donated to the Veteran’s Memorial Fund. It’s our belief that it doesn’t take a village to raise a child, it just takes a veteran to make a village. It’s with great pride that I present this check to the Springdale Veteran’s Memorial Fund in the amount of $500.

    Mr. Wilson said on behalf of the Veteran’s Memorial I thank you. It’s donations like this that inspire us to do what we do as veterans. This just makes it that much closer to being a completed project.

    PRESENTATION BY GARDEN CLUB

    Joan Knox, Springdale Garden Club stated on September 29 we had a plant sale and swap in front of the Community Center. We dug up plants from our gardens and plats from the Community Center, and Public Works donated some day lilies. We raised over $400. Our Garden Club decided to increase that to $500 to go to the Veteran’s Memorial Fund. Mrs. Knox introduced Sally Bicket, Echo Shaver, Joan Ross and Ruth Honor from the Springdale Garden Club.   

    ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONS

RESOLUTION R21-2007 “COMMENDING WILLIAM SEYFERT FOR HIS DEDICATION AND SERVICE TO THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE IN HIS TENURE AS A MEMBER AND CHAIRMAN OF THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE PLANNING COMMISSION”

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

Resolution R21-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.

Mayor Webster said I am sincere in saying Bill is a real trooper. He began serving in January 1971. Not everyone who appeared before Planning Commission agreed with the decision that was made but not a single one said that he was not treated fairly. A lot of important decisions have come before that commission and the City has realized tremendous growth. Bill and his Planning Commission have certainly been a part of that and Bill will be missed.

Mr. Vanover, Mr. Wilson Mr. Diehl and Mr. Danbury expressed their gratitude to Mr. Syfert.

Mr. Galster said I served on Planning Commission for thirteen years under the direction of Mr. Syfert. Through his excellent leadership every member was given the opportunity to become comfortable. He was encouraging to all the members as we had change-overs from time to time. He kept us all in line. It was his ability to harness the talents of everybody on the dais that led to be what I consider to be one of the best boards in the City. We were allowed to make the applicant feel very comfortable. Thank you for allowing me to learn.

RESOLUTION R22-2007 “COMMENDING EDWARD F. KNOX FOR HIS LONG AND DISTINGUISHED SERVICE TO THE CITIZEN OF THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE”

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

Mr. Wilson said Edward and I are both from Philadelphia and we are both veterans. I’m going to miss that friendship that we’ve had over the years. He was a very good Clerk of Council and did his job well.

Mrs. McNear said I would like to thank Mr. Knox for his years of service. All of us in public service try to leave a positive mark when we leave office and I think Mr. Knox has left a tremendous mark on the City. He has moved the dial and has always been prepared for his assignments. He’s volunteered and done some of the things that some of us would not like to do. I have tremendous shoes to fill and I hope to be able to depend on Mr. Knox when I need advice. Thank you and also Mrs. Knox because it is a family commitment.

Mr. Vanover, Mr. Squires, Mr. Galster, Mrs. Harlow and Mr. Danbury all said Mr. Knox has done a great service for the City and conducted meetings with dignity and charm. We wish you the best.

Mayor Webster stated after serving twenty-four years I couldn’t think of anyone I’d be more happy to have succeed me as Clerk of Council/Finance Director. You raised the level of performance to an all time high. I envy you in some of the things you have been able to achieve there. We have lost a good public servant and friend.

Resolution R22-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.

Mr. Knox said the City is run the way a city should be run. A lot of people can take credit for that. For the last twelve years the City has come out ahead because we’ve had nine honest people sitting on the dais. I’m sure it will continue.

ORDINANCE NO. 64-2007 “ACCEPTING A BID AND AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH PREMIER MECHANICAL SERVICES FOR SERVICING HVAC, HOT WATER AND CONTROL SYSTEMS AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY”

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

Mr. Osborn stated Premier is the company that holds the contract currently in place. It is a two year agreement with one option year that is expiring. The service they have provided has been excellent. Mechanical equipment companies only come to your attention when something is going wrong. They have really not had that experience here with the City. They are very responsive. We’ve never had a dispute over billing. It has been a real pleasure working with them and we encourage Council to enter into an agreement with them.

Ordinance 64-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.

ORDINANCE NO. 65-2007 “AUTHORIZING THE CITY LAW DIRECTOR TO FILE A PETITION FOR APPROPRIATION OF PROPERTY NECESSARY FOR THE S.R. 4 AND CRESCENTVILLE ROAD IMPROVEMENT PROJECT, DETERMINING PUBLIC EXIGENCY, AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY (GUASTELLO PROPERTY)

Mr. Osborn said Exhibit A is the legal description you saw at the last meeting. Exhibit B sets out our appraisal value. As I read this it calls for us to describe the value we place on the property.

Mr. Schneider responded that is correct. There should be an Exhibit B which is the value the appraiser gave us. I do not have that with me if you want to defer until the next meeting.

Mr. Osborn replied we have to have control of the property by December 14.

Mr. Schneider said I will attempt to get that before we conclude tonight. You could pass it subject to it being attended to and being the appraised value we got, you could go ahead on that basis.

Mr. Galster asked would it be fair to assume that the price per square foot is similar to the surrounding areas that we have already come to a conclusion on and had appraisals on?

Mr. Schneider stated I think that’s a fair conclusion. There may be some adjustment as to location but it would be based on the same comparables in the area.
Mayor Webster asked that we move this ordinance to later in the evening and try to find the attachment since it’s going to court.

Mr. Galster made a motion to continue the item until later in the meeting after Resolution R27-2007. Mr. Danbury seconded. The motion passed with seven affirmative votes.

RESOLUTION R18-2007 “CONFIRMING THE MAYOR’S APPOINTMENT OF TONY BUTRUM AS A MEMBER OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION”

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

Mayor Webster said Mr. Butrum joined Planning Commission three years ago. He has distinguished himself as an outstanding member.

Resolution R18-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.

RESOLUTION R19-2007 “CONFIRMING THE MAYOR’S APPOINTMENT OF LAWRENCE HAWKINS, III, AS A MEMBER OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION”

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

Mayor Webster stated Mr. Hawkins has been with us about eight years. He doesn’t talk a lot but when he speaks he’s done his homework. I think he’s been a real contributor to the board.

Resolution R19-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.

RESOLUTION R20-2007 “CONFIRMING THE MAYOR’S APPOINTMENT OF CAROLYN GHANTOUS AS A MEMBER OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION”

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

Mayor Webster said Mrs. Ghantous lives at 11806 Neuss Avenue. She and her husband have lived in Springdale since relocating back here in 1986. She attended Marshall University and is a broker for Coldwell Banker. She has an outstanding record in the business community and is active in SOS. She is committed to the City.

Resolution R20-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.

Mr. Galster nominated David Okum and Mr. Vanover seconded.

Mr. Diehl nominated Richard Bauer and Mr. Danbury seconded. Mr. Diehl then withdrew the nomination.
Mayor Webster said you have a person nominated and seconded. What if you have three or four people? Are they all going to contend for the second spot? Mrs. McNear, do you remember how we’ve done this in the past?

Mrs. McNear replied we have done them separately in the past.

Mayor Webster asked shouldn’t you get all the names of the people you are going to nominate on the floor and then get it down to the two people you are going to appoint?

Mr. Schneider stated I believe we did take nominations for one position and this is one position. If someone has other nominations they can put them up for this one as well as the second one.

    Mr. Galster said considering the fact that Mr. Okum is presently on the board can we consider Resolution R23-2007 as his position that would be vacated December 1 and if someone wants to nominate someone else let them come forth.

Mr. Danbury withdrew his second of the nomination of Richard Bauer.

    Mr. Okum was nominated with seven affirmative votes.

RESOLUTION R23-2007 “APPOINTING DAVID OKUM AS A MEMBER OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION”

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

Resolution R23-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.

Mr. Diehl nominated Richard Bauer as a member of Planning Commission. Mr. Bauer is a project manager for Turner Construction. He was previously project manager at UC overseeing the sports complex. Mr. Bauer is very active in the community. Mr. Danbury seconded the nomination.

Mr. Bauer was nominated by acclamation.

RESOLUTION R24-2007 “APPOINTING RICHARD BAUER AS A MEMBER OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION”

Mr. Vanover made a motion to adopt and Mr. Wilson seconded.

Resolution R24-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.

Mr. Squires nominated Bob Weidlich as a member of the Board of Zoning Appeals. Mr. Vanover seconded.

Mr. Weidlich was nominated by acclamation.

RESOLUTION R25-2007 “APPOINTING BOB WEIDLICH AS A MEMBER OF THE BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS”

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

Resolution R25-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.

Mr. Galster nominated Thomas Goines for Civil Service Commission. Mr. Vanover seconded.

Mr. Goines was nominated by acclamation.

RESOLUTION R26-2007 “APPOINTING THOMAS GOINES AS A MEMBER OF THE CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION”

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

Resolution R26-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.

Mr. Galster stated I have not been able to talk with Mr. Miller whose term is expiring on Charter Revision so I’m not sure if he’s interested in continuing or not.

Mrs. Harlow said we have been exchanging phone messages and we have not been able to talk either.

Mr. Danbury said whomever we get I hope will be active. This board has not met for some time. We need to have people who really want to get involved.

Mrs. McNear stated Charter did meet in November and they have a meeting scheduled for January as well. There have been some changes to the board with regard to the responsibility of the chairpersonship. We do expect this board to become very active. There are some issues on the table for them to research.

Mr. Galster made a motion to table Resolution R27-2007 and Mr. Vanover seconded. The motion passed with seven affirmative votes.

Mr. Vanover nominated Steve Galster to be renewed on Planning Commission.

Mr. Diehl stated I previously served on Planning Commission which I enjoyed very much but I would not to want to take the place of Steve Galster so I second the nomination of Mr. Galster.

Mr. Galster was appointed by seven affirmative votes.

ORDINANCE 65-2007 continued.

Mr. Schneider said we did search tonight and did not find the appraisal. We have every reason to believe it will be the same basis of comparables as the other properties in that area. If you would like to move forward tonight with that assumption we can send you a copy of the appraisal by tomorrow.

Mr. Galster made a motion to adopt Ordinance 65-2007 with the understanding that Attachment B will be brought forward and will show that the value of the property is in line with the other properties that have been acquired on this project. Mr. Danbury seconded.

Ordinance 65-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.

Mrs. Harlow resigned from Board of Zoning Appeals.

Mr. Vanover nominated Bob Diehl to Board of Zoning Appeals as the Council Representative At-large. Mr. Galster seconded.

Mr. Vanover nominated Randy Danbury as the District Council representative. Mr. Vanover then withdrew his nomination.

Mr. Diehl was approved by seven affirmative votes.

Mr. Vanover nominated Randy Danbury as the District Council Representative. Mr. Squires seconded.

Mr. Danbury was nominated with seven affirmative votes.

Mayor Webster stated I have reappointed Jane Huber and Robert Emerson to the Board of Zoning Appeals.

Mrs. Harlow stated I have asked Mr. Wilson to be chairman of the Finance Committee with Mr. Squires as a member. I have asked Jim Squires to serve on Board of Health; Mr. Wilson to chair the Veteran’s Memorial Committee with Mr. Galster as a member; Mr. Diehl to serve on Tax Review Committee; Mr. Vanover to chair the Civil Service Review Board with Mr. Danbury as a member. For the Volunteer Fire Committee I’ve asked Mr. Danbury to chair with Mr. Wilson as a member; Mr. Squires to chair Rules and Laws with Mr. Vanover as a committee member.

Mrs. Harlow said I wanted to have a discussion about removing from the agenda Public Relations; Public Utilities; Health, Safety & Welfare and Capital Improvements. In the interim I am appointing Tom Vanover for Public Relations; Public Health, Safety and Welfare and Public Utilities. We’ve never had any reports on those committees in my ten years on Council. I’d like to see them either turned over to Rules and Laws for a decision to see if we can do away with them, or ask Council’s permission tonight to do away with them.

Mr. Galster asked Mr. Schneider, is there anything in the Charter that says we can’t eliminate these boards by Council action?

Mr. Schneider said some things are created in the Charter. Council has the right to create and eliminate whatever committees it wishes.

Mayor Webster said the only one spelled out in Charter are Planning Commission and Board of Zoning Appeals, and Civil Service Review. Some of these may have had a significance in the past.

Mr. Wilson said we spoke a few days ago about Public Works and Capital Improvements and we suggested putting these under the Engineer’s Report. Mr. Shvegzda could e-mail the report to the Council members on Monday and if they wanted to look at the streets, properties, etc., they could discuss it with him, and he could give the report at Council.

Mrs. Harlow said we will discuss that next. I’d like to stay with Public Relations, Public Utilities and Public Health, Safety and Welfare.

Mr. Vanover said the primary function of Public Relations was the newsletter and that has been given to Administration, and the last activity with Public Utilities was during the time when the cable contracts were being negotiated. We could resurrect them at any point in time.

Mayor Webster said twelve years ago Council and Administration agreed we wanted to spruce up the newsletter and make it more professional. We also agreed that we would eliminate articles from any elected official. I constantly get great feedback with what the editor does. The newsletter is comprised of articles about projects that are going on.

Mr. Schneider stated the three you are mentioning seem to be at the option of Council. Article II, Section B.5 “The Council shall create such commissions, departments, boards and offices in addition to those established by this Charter as it deems necessary, may determine the powers and duties and may abolish, reorganize and consolidate them. Those established by Charter are Planning Commission, Board of Zoning Appeals, Park and Recreation, Volunteer Firemen’s Dependent Board and the Board of Health. Those are the required commissions that must be retained unless we change the Charter.”

Mr. Galster made a motion to remove Public Health, Safety and Welfare; Public Utilities; and Public Relations from active status. Mr. Vanover seconded. The motion passed with seven affirmative votes.

Mrs. Harlow said I’d like to ask the City Engineer to give the Public Works and Capital Improvements reports. I think you are better suited to answer any questions about those reports.

Mr. Shvegzda asked would Council like me to e-mail the reports on Monday? Council replied yes, that would be good.

Mr. Wilson said I think it is good for Council to have the reports on Monday so if there are questions they can be addressed prior to the meeting.

Mrs. Harlow stated I would hate to see all seven members of Council bombard the Engineer’s department with questions.

Mr. Wilson said I don’t think we would have that much.

Mrs. Harlow said we need an OKI representative. Mrs. McNear said we have to notify them by January 10.

Mr. Galster asked what happens if we don’t send anybody? It has to be an elected official. I know we have a vote in the main assembly. Could we appoint a member who doesn’t have to go to every meeting?

Mr. Osborn responded over the years that’s how it was dealt with but I can say that having someone there who is a presence, who is identified as representing the City of Springdale, gives us a little edge in pursuing funding. I think if Mr. Knox were here he would also say there is an ongoing contest between Hamilton County and Butler County as to who gets appointed to the executive committee, etc. He was very active in the politics of the organization trying to make sure that Hamilton County has fair representative, which it currently does not. The world’s not going to come to an end if we don’t have somebody at every meeting but it was sure nice when we had Ed there at every meeting.

Mrs. McNear said I could contact Mr. Knox and ask him the level of commitment, how much time it does take. I think they always hold these downtown. There are two levels of support.

Mr. Osborn said they are held at OKI headquarters on Pete Rose Way just east of the ballpark. The meetings are one and a half or two hour meetings.

Mr. Diehl asked could it be by committee?

Mr. Osborn replied no, I think there has to be a person appointed. Maybe there could be a person and an alternate.

Mr. Galster asked does the alternative have to be an elected official.

Mrs. Harlow said I remember Mr. Knox indicating that you could be a representative for another community but you could not vote.

Mr. Squires said I believe the representative from the City of Springdale actually becomes a trustee of OKI.

Mr. Vanover made a motion to continue the discussion at the next meeting. Council agreed.

    OLD BUSINESS                     -     none

    NEW BUSINESS

    Mayor Webster said I would like to give Council a report on how the Police Department and SOS are doing in fulfilling the needs of the needy families. I have a note from Officer Bemis informing me that four families have already had canned goods delivered. All of the SOS families will be getting small food baskets from the Police Department. Fourteen kids will be participating in the Shop with a Cop on December 8; six kids have already received new coats. Two families on the list have moved out of town but they have already been invited to the Shop with a Cop. The next canned food delivery will take place December 14. They have helped out thirty-seven of the forty-three families on the list and they still have donations coming in from local sponsors and we have gift cards we are in the process of assigning. I would like to make a plea that anyone out there watching this. The Police Department is still accepting food even if you have not received a citation. If you would like to make a cash donation to SOS or buy gifts for a needy family please contact us at 346-5725. I think all of our families have been accounted for but we can always use the money for gift cards. Several on the dais have participated in the activity and I want to thank you very much for your donations and support.

    Mr. Danbury said I would like to forward to Council a law that the State of Oklahoma enacted in April 2007 that went into effect November 1. It deals with stricter penalties in dealing with illegal aliens. The new law says it is illegal to knowingly harbor or I would think rent to known illegals as well as illegal employment. They also receive no state aid except for emergency medical issues; no college tuitions. Perhaps there is something we can pass on to the State Legislature such as a resolution to encourage them to try to save money that shouldn’t go out to the people who shouldn’t be here. I don’t think anybody here is against aliens as long as they are legal. We do have laws here and we hope they follow the laws.

    Mayor Webster said that is a great idea. I suggest before we draft something that we touch base with our local House representative just to see if there is anything going on at the State level. I think that is really where that issue has to be addressed.

    Mrs. McNear said each year there is a document that has to be signed for the State of Ohio Department of Commerce Division of State Fire Marshall for the Volunteer Firefighters’ Dependent Fund. It’s an annual election of its board members and Marty Holden has requested a form for the 2007 version.

    Mr. Danbury and I discussed that and he will contact the committee members and take care of the necessary signatures when it comes in.

    Mr. Vanover said on Mr. Danbury’s comments, there are several interest groups that are active and monitoring amnesty programs shoved through Congress. We need to stay on top of that.

    Mrs. Harlow said I need to go back to Boards and Commissions. I would like to form a new committee that was brought to my attention by a couple of Council members. We need a housing committee. That’s one of the concerns some of our candidates heard while campaigning. We want to make sure that our maintenance codes are up to par and that they are being enforced. We want to keep a good quality of housing in Springdale so that we are a viable community. I am asking Mr. Galster to chair that with Mr. Squires and Mr. Diehl as members. I think we have needed this for some time and this committee will lay some groundwork as to what we need to do in the future, whether it will remain a committee or become a board.

    MEETINGS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS

    Planning Commission                     -     December 11
    Board of Health                     -     December 13
    Board of Zoning Appeals                 -     December 18

COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE    -     none

Mr. Danbury made a motion that Council go into executive session as a committee of the whole to discuss personnel issues. Mr. Vanover seconded. The motion passed with seven affirmative votes.

Council went into executive session at 8:57 p.m.

Council reconvened at 9:08 p.m.

Council adjourned at 9:10 p.m.

                        Respectfully submitted,




                        Kathy McNear
                        Clerk of Council/Finance Director

Minutes Approved:

Marjorie Harlow, President of Council



__________________________, 2007



       

City of Springdale Council


    December 5, 2007    2007