President of Council Kathy McNear called Council to order on April 2, 2003, at 7:00 p.m.
The governmental body and those in attendance recited the pledge of allegiance.
Mr. Knox took roll call. Present were Council members Pollitt, Squires, Vanover, Wilson and McNear. Mr. Danbury was absent. Mr. Galster arrived at 7:03 p.m.
The minutes of March 19, 2003 were approved with five affirmative votes.
Mr. Knox read part of a letter from the State Public Utilities Commission of Ohio.
Concerning CG&Eís request for a rate hike. "As a result the staff has determined that the calculation for the AMRP as reflected in the updated application is just and reasonable and recommends the approval of the 2003 AMRP rider rates of $1.84 for residential service and $9.84 for general service and transportation, and a $.02 per 1,000 cf rise to a to be implemented in the first billing cycle of May 2003 or the first billing cycle of the month following the Commissionís decision."
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
PRESENTATION Ė HOMELAND SECURITY Ė Don Macarone, Hamilton County
Emergency Management Agency
Mr. Osborn said at the last Council meeting, Council made inquiries as to our preparedness to deal with terrorist events related to homeland security. We certainly have an emergency plan to deal with specific threats but our principal role would be to serve as the first responders, identify the magnitude of the problem, try to establish perimeters and call for help. Chief Laage felt he couldnít add anything to what I had said. The Mayor suggested I contact Don Macarone and ask him if he would be willing to come in. He is the Director of the Hamilton County Emergency Management Agency and the key person in the county in coordinating disaster response. Heís the first person we turn to for direction and assistance. Heís going to discuss what type of resources are available through his office as well as some guidance on how a resident might prepare himself in case of an event that might be threatening to him.
Don Macarone stated I have had the privilege of working with your police and fire chiefs, administrator and assistant administrator for years. They represent the City well. Cecil and Derrick were instrumental in putting together committees in a process to enhance emergency planning in Hamilton County. Hamilton County started receiving grants in 1998 to allow first responders within our area to begin to access federal dollars to enhance local response capabilities specific to potential acts of terrorism. We didnít start doing a lot of our work post September 11. We were very fortunate that Hamilton County was accessing equipment grants as well as the City of Cincinnati, and some other grants that bring some unique resources into our region. All this equipment is all available to any jurisdiction in Hamilton County through mutual aid. We also have access to state resources. Resources that have specialized weapons of mass destruction capabilities are housed with the Ohio National Guard. We also have a specialized team organized under the Hamilton County Fire Chief. Itís an urban search and rescue task force. Weíre very lucky to have these unique resources that are available to us and being able to help enhance the readiness of any jurisdiction within Hamilton County. Have I addressed the concerns you had regarding the resource capability?
Mr. Osborn yes, the only one I can think of that is pretty prominent on our planning is the medical emergency response teams that would come into a disaster area.
Mr. Macarone stated there are a couple of teams that have a medical orientation. I was saving the City of Cincinnati has a separate issue. There is already a team available through the American Red Cross Office in Hamilton County. The City of Cincinnati has received a grant for a contract to help develop a metropolitan medical response system. That basically is bringing in additional medical response capabilities with additional training. The whole aspect and potential impact in our area is making everyone think a lot more out of the box and take a regional approach. We will need state and federal resources.
Mr. Macarone said there are a number of issues we need to work together on to get the general public better informed and educated. We are behind the curve on that and there are new resources being developed as we speak. We need to look at how we get information to every household in Hamilton County. There is information out there. There is a section called Public Emergency Information and Emergency Action Procedures in the Cincinnati Bell White Pages. We are working with the Red Cross, HazMat Unit, Cincinnati Alliance for Medical Safety. The information was developed prior to September 11th. There has been a creation of a homeland security advisory system. The federal government has created a Homeland Security Department. The federal government has created the five-tier, color-coded system. A very good resource available right now is through the Red Cross website. I will leave with you a list of websites that I suggest we get to the general public. Additionally, thereís the Federal Emergency Management Agency website and a document called "Are You Ready?"
Mr. Osborn said we could create a page on our Springdale website and link it to those websites. Maybe we can get something in our newsletter if itís not too late to stop the presses. After last meeting when you asked me this, Chief Laage reminded me that we have successfully applied for a grant for homeland security. Some of the money went for a 4í x 8í color map of the City. Itís so beneficial for table top exercises and emergency planning. Part of the money went to acquire additional intelligence equipment. We will take advantage of any grants we can.
PRESENTATION Ė BOND LEVY Ė PRINCETON SCHOOL BOARD
Mayor Webster said I was contacted by Catherine Raabe spearheading the drive to get the bond levy passed next month asking if some representatives from the School Board could come and let us know whatís going on and what to expect in the next five weeks.
Don Darby, Superintendent of Princeton Schools gave a power point presentation on building new or renovated elementary schools in the Princeton School District. Mr. Darby introduced school board members Jenny Pansing and Tawana Keels, both past presidents.
Mayor Webster asked what kind of roll out schedule do you have?
Mr. Darby replied one year from passage we will be breaking ground in some locations. Eighteen to 24 months from groundbreaking we can expect occupancy. We should have a full build out in five years.
Ms. Pollitt asked whatís your marketing plan?
Mr. Darby answered itís underway already. We are using meetings with groups, signs, bumper stickers.
Ms. Pollitt asked are you doing anymore community sessions like we had a month ago?
Mr. Darby responded we are not planning anymore at this time but we can go anywhere anytime.
Ms. Pollitt said I heard people expected more presentation. The architects and planners were there. It would be nice to see it promoted by the school board. I will support the levy but I came away from that session not feeling good about what I heard about the junior high and high school.
Ms. Pansing said the plan we decided on wasnít from the architects or planners.
Mr. Knox said the schools need to be rebuilt. Letís make sure we get the biggest bang for our buck. What is the cost of renovation for Glendale?
Mr. Darby replied we know what a new building would cost but we donít know about renovation. Until those numbers are in a decision canít be made. The number of students would be in the 280-300 range. I donít know how many live in Glendale. It has never been a school for Glendale only. All our education lines are not drawn around community lines.
Mr. Knox said I heard there are less than 50 children from Glendale.
Mr. Darby stated we could do this with four buildings. The communities donít want this. They value community schools.
Ms. Pansing said if we donít build a school in each community how do we choose who gets one? Once we remove a school from a community it would never go back.
Mr. Galster asked what is the bond maturity retirement date?
Mr. Darby replied 27 years.
Mr. Galster asked how long until the junior high and high school go through the same process?
Mr. Darby answered we plan to revisit that in the future but it has to do with how the bonds can be leveraged. The best time would be when we could ask the residents to restore the original level with no new money.
Mr. Osborn stated our charter prevents me from endorsing any campaign. I can say on a factual basis that I did have an opportunity to serve on the Strategic Planning Team. I was also on the Facilities Team. We toured every piece of property owned by the district. They have done an excellent job of prolonging the life of those buildings. There are some very deplorable conditions, despite their best efforts, that really do suggest that these buildings are well beyond their life expectancy. Itís probably very expensive for the District to maintain them in their current conditions. The School District has put together a proposal that addresses some very critical issues and I believe there certainly ought to be further observations as to what options they may have at a later date.
Mayor Webster said Iíd like to go back to the Glendale situation. I wholeheartedly support the concept of any schools and I think Glendale deserves a community school as much as the other five entities. My comments are not directed towards eliminating the building or the Glendale School. However, given the small number of students you donít have any choice but to come to Springdale, Sharonville, Woodlawn and bus kids in there to beef up the numbers enough to support an elementary school. I have a real problem with that especially since we are going to have a brand new school here. We have kids in the Colony and in Glenview who are taken to Glendale instead of being brought to Springdale where they belong.
Mr. Darby replied that has been one of the most debated issues of the process. The board considered all the feedback that it got and this is the plan that was decided upon. Itís a history of this school that schools from other municipalities attend this school.
Mr. Wilson queried would you consider a smaller school to accommodate Glendale?
Mr. Darby stated itís not just for students in Glendale.
Ms. Pansing stated that a portion of Sharonville students have attended Evendale schools since it was built. If you told those folks that with the new school they have to transfer to Sharonville because thatís their neighborhood community, they would not feel that way. They are residents of Sharonville but they want to be a part of Evendale.
Mr. Vanover said Iíve had several questions from people in our neighborhood asking when will we cut the Butler County section out?
Mr. Darby responded that is beyond our power. That area is part of Princeton School District. We draw from four villages, four townships and three counties. It would only happen with mutual agreement between school districts.
Mr. Galster said I would be happy to put a campaign sign in my yard.
Mayor Webster said in response to your comment about Evendale and Sharonville, we have a subdivision that goes to Heritage Hill. Itís not the same situation we have in Springdale. The Colony and Glenview kids are sent to Glendale because they donít have enough kids to justify a school. We annexed the Glenview Subdivision from Springfield Township and were able to get an upper class neighborhood in that area. We sold them on Springdale Elementary School and Springdale services. They get all the services but the school bus takes them to little tiny Glendale who doesnít have enough kids to afford their own schools and I object to making that contribution to Glendale.
Mr. Darby replied they donít do districting along municipal lines. The board is on record saying any child attending a Glendale elementary school will be on par with any other new school in the district.
Mr. Knox asked will we be voting on the plan as its written?
Mr. Darby replied the language for the bond was to construct eight new and/or renovated school buildings, property acquisition, transition costs, demolition, etc.
PRESENTATION Ė OCMA INTERGOVERNMENTAL COOPERATION AWARD
TO THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE Ė Robert Harrison, City
Manager, City of Wyoming
Mr. Osborn said we were very proud to learn that Springdale, along with the City of Montgomery as well as the Center for Local Government, was nominated for consideration for an award from the Ohio City Management Association. Derrick and I were out of town this winter when the awards were presented, but typically they also like to make the presentation to the individual community through a representative of OCMA at a Council meeting. Present tonight is Mr. Robert Harrison, City Manager of the City of Wyoming representing OCMA.
Mr. Harrison said I am here on behalf of the Ohio City Managers Association, which is part of the International City Managers Association, to acknowledge individuals who have developed creations and successful programs promoting excellence in local governments and to recognize the quality leadership your staff makes to the community. They developed five different categories and had over forty applicants for awards. Springdale, Montgomery and the Center for Local Governments received the Inter-Governmental Cooperation Award for the Disaster Preparedness Training Program they developed. . After the 1999 tornado several jurisdictions committed to updating the emergency disaster plan to more effectively respond to such disasters in the future. The Center for Local Government coordinated an effort led by the cities of Springdale and Montgomery to design a model emergency operations plan and develop a five-part disaster assistance plan to assist other jurisdictions in emergency planning. Thirty-seven jurisdictions in Hamilton County participated in the training session. We would like to recognize nationally the model that Mr. Osborn and his staff put together. It will be submitted for international recognition.
Mr. Osborn said on behalf of our staff we feel very fortunate to be part of a very dedicated group of communities around the county that have come together to address this critical issue. There was a high degree of feedback on establishing the model. We felt that if we had EOP plans that were consistent in make-up; then we were in a position to better come to the assistance of other jurisdictions during an emergency. We have never had in place a mutual aid agreement for managers that would allow us to come to one anotherís relief during a major disaster. We learned from the Montgomery experience that it is a necessity. The idea grew out of that event. As you have heard, there was an overwhelming response from other local jurisdictions in the county. I accept this award on behalf of the City of Springdale. I thank the Mayor and City Council for allowing us to be involved in this type of planning.
Mayor Webster said I would like to take this opportunity to send appreciation to Mr. Osborn and is entire staff.
Mr. Galster said it is a pleasure to work with someone of Cecilís caliber.
ORDINANCE NO. 13-2003"VACATING McCLELLANíS LANE ON THE NORTHERLY SIDE OF KEMPER ROAD AND AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO EXECUTE ANY AND ALL DOCUMENTS NECESSARY FOR SAID VACATION"
Mr. Vanover made a motion to adopt and Mr. Wilson seconded.
Ordinance 13-2003 passed with six affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 14-2003"AMENDING THE ZONING CODE TO PROVIDE AS PRINCIPAL PERMITTED USE FACILITIES PROVIDING POST SECONDARY EDUCATION IN FIELDS OF STUDY RELATED TO ANY PRINCIPALLY PERMITTED USES IN THE FOLLOWING SECTIONS OF THE ZONING CODE: 153.201; 153.216; 153.231; 153.246; AND 153.261"
ORDINANCE NO. 15-2003 "AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO RENEW THE CONTRACT WITH NEXT STEP NETWORKING TO PROVIDE NETWORK AND LAN ADMINISTRATIVE SERVICES FOR THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE LOCAL AREA NETWORK AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY"
Mr. Galster made a motion to adopt and Mr. Squires seconded.
Mrs. McNear said I work for a competitor and will excuse myself from this issue.
Mr. Galster made a motion to take out of Section 2 the words "billed quarterly". Ms. Pollitt seconded. The motion passed with five affirmative votes.
Ordinance 15-2003 passed with five affirmative votes.
Mr. Osborn said back to disaster planning and preparedness, some time ago I asked if Council would mind going to the Community Center and having your pictures taken for a City identification card. We have only had three or four responses to date. If we have a major disaster and have to quarantine parts of the City, we would then be able to get you through the lines without having to come out and identify you.
Mr. Knox said the audit letter for each elected official has arrived. I will see that it gets into your mail bins.
Mr. Osborn said I received an e-mail from the Municipal League concerning cuts in local government funds. The leadership of the House outlined its intention to reduce local government funds, local government assisted funds and local government liability support funds from $2.46 billion to $1 billion. They are making a very substantial cut and the Municipal League is asking for immediate assistance. There are only eight days left for budget consideration in the House.
Mr. Squires asked how much to this city?
Mr. Knox replied it is coming in from three different sources and we donít know how bad they have hit us. I will have to look at it tomorrow.
Mayor Webster said you can never get your arms around this thing. They failed to reduce staff. In fact, they have added to their staff. That government has chosen to make sure the municipalities suffer. Columbus is going to be left intact.
Mr. Osborn stated we have an opportunity to apply for funding under the Transportation Enhancement Program used to fund the first phase of the Streetscape Program. We have had Phase II in mind for some time which would extend that same appearance south to Cameron and north to Glensprings. Weíd like City Council to consider a resolution at the next meeting authorizing an application for funding to support Phase II. Weíre not going to spend significant funding on the front of this unless we get funding for this. We will also apply at the lowest local participation level we can. The rough number on Phase II is another $1 million. The City would have to provide $200,000 but to get a return of $800,000 for that $200,000, t is reasonable to evaluate the option of borrowing if necessary to get the 80/20 funds. There is no obligation in making application. We can decline if we find ourselves in financial difficulty. We are not anticipating engineering until 2004 with construction in 2005.
Mayor Webster read a letter of resignation from the Health Commissioner.
Mayor Webster read a proclamation declaring this "Donate Life Month."
Mr. Squires said we received in our packets very nice pictures of the Veteranís Memorial concept.
Mr. Wilson said we have applied for 501c3 which allows us to take tax deductible donations for the Veteranís Memorial.
Mr. Galster said the renderings are to get Council up-to-date. We do have a blueprint for where weíd like to see it go. We had a meeting today with a gentleman who provided a lot of insight. We look forward to getting it up shortly but we need to make sure we have all the proper documentation in place first.
Mr. Squires asked do we know when we get the trees for the corridor?
Mayor Webster said the trees are in the City. Itís just a matter of getting them scheduled in.
Mr. Knox said we have another change in a liquor license. It appears to be a transfer of ownership of Vintage Wine and Coffee. Council had no objections.
Mr. Parham said on March 28 I received information on health insurance renewal rates. The health insurance rates received are for May 1 through April 30. The last two years have been the most costly years in the program, $743,000 last year and $851,710 this year. In the 2003 budget process we found it necessary to have additional appropriations of $400,000 to handle claims for the 2002 year. The specific deductible per individual is $30,000. For a number of years we were at $20,000, then $25, 000. A few years ago we moved to $30,000 per individual. The rate increase we are seeing is 43% increase in our re-insurance rates for a specific level. The aggregate amount for re-insurance attachment point is the total amount of the deductible where presented with options of moving to $35,000 and $40,000. If you raise the limit then you will not see those lower limits again. They will continue to increase rates whether we increase our risks or not. The aggregate attachment point for this contract year was $810,000. To date we have expended $880,000 so we will receive reimbursements back. The increase in the attachment point has gone from $810,000 this year to over $1 million. Our recommendation is to remain at the $30,000 specific rate, not to move to the $35,000 or $40,000 limit. There was a slight increase in administrative costs for the third party administrator. I recommend that we accept the renewal rates.
Mr. Osborn said last year when we saw this significant jump, we broke the number down per contract and did a little research. I was very pleased to see that even at that increase we were better off than many jurisdictions sampled. Even with a big increase this year we are still better off than many jurisdictions were last year. While this seems like a significant increase, if we were in the commercial market, weíd be seeing far greater numbers than these. Itís still paying for itself. The benefit is that as losses go down so will our costs. This looks like relatively simple stuff but it represents a great deal of effort on Derrickís part, to shop our options, put out specifications, get proposals, etc..
Mr. Knox stated I independently compared the Cityís rate with private corporations. The Cityís rate was quite favorable. I thank Mr. Parham for his continued good work in this area.
Mayor Webster said Council needs to decide its summer schedule. Council decided to have one meeting in July and August. The dates are July 16 and August 20
MEETINGS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
Arbor Day - April 25
Board of Zoning Appeals - April 15
Board of Health - April 10
Planning Commission - April 8
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
UPDATE ON LEGISLATION STILL IN DEVELOPMENT
Code of Ordinances Regarding Solicitation - open
Ordinance 12 - May 2
Ordinance 14 - May 2
RECAP OF LEGISLATIVE ITEMS REQUESTED
Resolution for Phase II Streetscape - April 19
Stop Loss Insurance - April 19
Agreement with UMR - April 19
Council adjourned at 9:00 p.m.
Edward F. Knox
Clerk of Council/Finance Director
Kathy McNear, President of Council