President of Council Kathy McNear called Council to order on May 2, 2001, 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 Danbury, Galster, Pollitt, Squires, Vanover, Wilson and McNear.
The minutes of April 18, 2001 were approved with seven affirmative votes.
COMMUNICATIONS - none
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
ORDINANCE NO. 18-2001 "AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH THE STATE OF OHIO AND CSX TRANSPORTATION, INC. REGARDING CONSTRUCTION OF THE GRADE SEPARATION STRUCTURE CARRYING THE CSX RAILROAD OVER STATE ROUTE 747 IN THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE"
ORDINANCE NO. 31-2001 "AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO AN INTERIM CONTRACT TO PERMIT THE INSTALLATION OF TELECOMMUNICATION FACILITIES WITHIN THE RIGHTS-OF-WAY OF THIS MUNICIPALITY AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY"
The ordinance was corrected to read House Bill 286 in Section 2.
Mr. Squires made a motion to adopt and Mr. Vanover seconded.
Mr. Osborn said the title of the ordinance refers to an interim contract when what we are talking about is an interim agreement. Is it appropriate to leave "contract" in there or should it be "agreement"?
Mr. Galster made a motion to amend the title of Ordinance 31-2001 to change "contract" to agreement". Mr. Vanover seconded. The motion passed with six affirmative votes. Mr. Danbury abstained.
Mr. Osborn said as I explained in the legislative update, this is a stop-gap measure on our part to respond to a request from a private utility to install a telecommunications system in the public right-of-way. In this particular case it is City Signal. They are proposing to put a fiber optic backbone down SR 747. This would be part of a bigger system that would be distributed throughout Hamilton County and some of Butler County. The reason we are in this position is that the federal government de-regulated this market several years ago. More recently the State of Ohio adopted House Bill 285 that has caused even more confusion and lack of understanding of what the complete authority of a local jurisdiction is in terms of regulating its public right-of-way. Bob Malloy, an attorney with Wood and Lamping has been working on this with Dave Butsch and me for about six months. The problem arises now as we have been formally approached by Cincinnati Signal Company to do this installation, and by the State statute we have to respond within 45 days. Although we donít have our regulation complete, Bob Malloy has prepared a model ordinance for use on an interim basis and he is proposing that we enter into an interim agreement with this vendor. If you read the interim agreement itself you will notice that it incorporates the draft regulations by reference and the applicant needs to comply with the draft regulations. It indicates that the City is free to make future amendments to the draft regulations that the applicant is obliged to comply with as long as these changes are consistent with State law. The interim agreement also states that any fees the applicant would otherwise pay would be be deferred until the City adopts its regulations regarding right-of-way. Under the circumstances we felt this was the best response we could do. It does provide the City with protection. It gives us an opportunity to work with the applicant and do oversight review of plans and documents related to what they propose. I hate to bring this to Council on such short notice but the problem has been brought upon us by these changes in the law. While we did have a work in progress trying to come up with something, we were not ready when this applicant came forward. We would ask Council to approve Ordinance 31 which would authorize the City to use an interim agreement until such time as we adopt the final regulations.
Mr. Galster said this is just a telecommunications agreement. Does it cover underground lines, wireless telecommunications?
Mr. Osborn replied it would cover utilities attached to poles. It would cover underground, anything that would disrupt the public right-of-way. I have also had contact with three or four other companies that have inquired about our regulations because they have expressed an interest in coming into this market. Most of them have been fiber optic based. One has been wireless but they have not moved forward. They were supposed to attach to a grid of utility poles.
Mr. Galster asked what if they need to put a tower in the right away. Do we have language in here similar to our wireless cell tower ordinance?
Mr. Osborn responded this provides for the installation of new poles. I canít tell you that Iím aware of the details and regulations to respond to a cell tower. We have other regulations to deal with those. These regulations are specifically intended to protect the public right-of-way from having people come in and willy-nilly put new underground lines in place, new poles in place without any regard to driveway locations, fire hydrant locations, or other underground utility locations. The best we can do under these circumstances is attempt to regulate where they go. Secondly, we can attempt to recoup some of our costs in managing this issue. If you look at the fee structure under the draft ordinance you can see that there is a formula that may give us the ability to charge for such things as disruption of traffic. If a company comes in to do work in the right-of-way we can encourage them to do it off-peak because the hourly cost to disrupt traffic is going to be inverse to the traffic volume. Without this in place we have nothing to control the utility from coming in and running a line through the City of Springdale. Under de-regulation and under the State code and PUCO decisions, they now have the right to install the utility in the City.
Mr. Galster said so if somebody comes in to install poles, then this ordinance regulates them. What if a second one comes in? Does the fact that the tower ordinance is already there require them to try to relocate on the same poles or can they go where they want?
Mr. Osborn replied we will encourage them to use existing pole lines. I think they will want to, as it will be cheaper for them to do that. When you read into the document a little further, you will see that they will be responsible for obtaining all their pole attachment permits from Cincinnati Bell and Cinergy and thatís what we encourage them to do. In some cases they may want to put up new poles. If itís an underground area you canít put up new poles. Thatís why we need this ordinance, to give us the opportunity to impose these standards.
Mr. Danbury said this is a right-of-way issue, but due to the nature of the type of businesses that may be coming in, I will be abstaining due to the fact that I work for AOL-Time Warner.
Mrs. McNear stated I will also be abstaining since I am in the communications industry.
Mr. Osborn has suggested that instead of the blank spaces in Section 1 that we insert the words "any company".
Mr. Galster made a motion to amend Ordinance 31 to remove the blank spaces and insert "any company". Ms. Pollitt seconded. The motion passed with six affirmative votes.
Mr. Osborn said I just want to express a word of apology for the roughness of this ordinance. It was prepared by Mr. Malloy on Friday afternoon. He has been out of town since then so he had to get it out Friday afternoon. I know heís a detail oriented guy and would have cringed at some of these things. Nevertheless, I think he did a good job getting something together for us on short notice.
Mr. Galster asked do we know if this agreement has been used in other places or is it totally from scratch?
Mr. Osborn answered Iím not aware that itís been used any place else. I know that the draft legislation is a model ordinance that he has acquired from some source. He and David have attended a couple of seminars put on by telecommunications experts. The interim agreement itself I canít respond to.
Mr. Galster asked is it your intention that we will have this interim agreement and then weíll come up with a modified one?
Mr. Osborn replied this agreement would be specific to every applicant. We would use this interim agreement until we have the permanent ordinance in place. Mayor Webster asked if we would repeal this one. I doubt that we would because we will have issued some agreements under this.
Mr. Schneider stated we would not repeal this one. We would have new ordinances with the specific agreement with that companyís name.
Mr. Galster said so right now this agreement is a boilerplate and we are not even inserting the name of the person who has approached us. When that happens we will have another ordinance asking to add their name to the interim agreement.
Mr. Osborn said we will have inserts on the agreement itself. We would like to use this ordinance as a boilerplate so we donít have to come back to you every time with this interim thing. Then we would be coming back to you with legislation each time with the specific agreement identified.
In response to Mr. Galster, Mr. Osborn said this is a binding agreement on both parties. There are certain things that we conceded to. One of those is that the party will not have to pay any fees until we adopt our ordinance. They have conceded that they will comply with the draft ordinance and any changes we make to the draft ordinance as long as we are consistent with State law.
Mr. Schneider said this will set up the guidelines and will give the Administration the authority to enter into these interim agreements.
Ordinance 31-2001 passed with five affirmative votes. Mr. Danbury and Mrs. McNear abstained.
ORDINANCE NO. 32-2001 "ACCEPTING A BID AND AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH TREND CONSTRUCTION FOR THE WALNUT AND PEAR STREET IMPROVEMENTS PROJECT AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY"
Mr. Galster made a motion to adopt and Mr. Wilson seconded.
Ordinance 32-2001 passed with seven affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 33-2001 "ACCEPTING DEDICATION OF RIGHT-OF-WAY ALONG PARTS OF WALNUT AND PEAR STREETS AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY"
Mr. Galster made a motion to adopt and Mr. Vanover seconded.
Mr. Osborn stated this right-of-way is associated with the project for which you just awarded the contract. There is a plat dedication attached to the ordinance. There are two properties involved here. The first is Springdale Elementary School. There is a narrow sliver along the east side of Walnut Street that we will be acquiring from the school district. They have made a donation of that right-of-way. Thatís a little over .08 of an acre. On the west side we required right-of-way from Development Options which is the owner of the group home. That was about .054 acre and again, the right-of-way was donated to the City. We do need to move this along as we do want to have access of this property for the upcoming project.
Ordinance 33-2001 passed with seven affirmative votes.
Mr. Danbury said we had an incident this past weekend with the Creative Kids Care facility. Itís my understanding that the Mayor got a call from a resident stating that despite our continued concerns, children were playing out there after hours. Itís my understanding that we had some people out there on Sunday. Mr. Osborn, Mayor, do you want to expand on this?
Mayor Webster replied not really. We do have some things going on as I speak and I really would rather wait until those get in place and give Council and the residents an update at the next Council meeting.
Mr. Vanover said Mayor Webster, Mr. Squires and I were in attendance at a Crime Watch meeting in Heritage Hill a week or so ago. Some residents brought up some very vocal concerns about junk cars parked in the driveway and on the streets. I would ask that we pull up our junk car ordinance and refer it to Rules and Laws for another look. Evidently some of these vehicles are sitting in driveways and they have not moved for years. To be honest I donít know how they could be licensed but they say that they are and there are tags there.
Mr. Vanover continued Mr. Okum called about the tire store at Tri-County Mall. He was very concerned about the subdued red border that is going around that building out there. He called in to see if that was approved on the color pallet. The concern is that we want to do something and the feedback we are getting from the Building Department is that we donít have any teeth in the regulations that we can hold their feet to the fire on this. Any of us who have been on Planning or BZA know that we require color pallets when they come in. I find it hard to believe that we donít, so I think we need to look at formulating some legislation or re-tuning what we have because it puts us in a non-defensible position and makes life tough for all of us.
Mr. Osborn said we have budgeted for one of the inspectorís cars in the Building Department. We are looking to replace a 1989 Chevrolet Celebrity. Mr. McErlane has selected a Ford Taurus off a State Purchase Contract. The amount of that purchase would total $16,681 when you throw in the delivery charges, manuals, etc. The budgeted amount we had is $16,000 so weíre pretty much on budget. We would request legislation at your next meeting authorizing the replacement of that vehicle.
Mr. Osborn continued I would like to underscore the upcoming bike safety program that the City is putting on. This is primarily a Police Department effort supported by the Recreation Department. In some cases the Recreation Department is more involved. The first event will be Saturday, May 12 from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Springdale Community Center. This is an opportunity for everyone in the community to bring their bicycles to the Community Center. The bicycles will be inspected and minor maintenance can be performed by some of the technicians who will be available. Everyone who brings his/her bike in and has it registered with the Police Department will be eligible to get a free bike helmet and bike lock. Wal-Mart has donated two ten speed bikes to the City and these will be given away at the bike safety program on May 12. We will have repeats of this event throughout the summer. We hope to have eight events and we have purchased 400 helmets and bike locks for distribution. Some of the other dates include June 10 at Hunterís Glen, June 13 at Beacon Hills Park prior to a concert, June 27 in Chamberlain Park prior to a concert (subject to being rescheduled because the work by MSD is not complete), July 25 at Ross Park with a concert. Other locations on the list include the Glen View subdivision, Mallard Lake, PTO carnival at Heritage Hill and additional locations.
Mr. Wilson said you mentioned the vehicle being purchased. Are we trading in the 1989 Corsica?
Mr. Osborn replied we will hold that and sell it as part of our auction. We found that we can typically get more money by going through the auction than we can through a trade-in.
MEETINGS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
Planning Commission - May 8
Board of Health - May 10
Board of Zoning Appeals - May 15
Dedication of Community Center - May 20, 2 p.m.
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
UPDATE ON LEGISLATION STILL IN DEVELOPMENT
RECAP OF LEGISLATIVE ITEMS REQUESTED
Ordinance to buy Building Department car - June 6, 2001
Mr. Danbury made a motion that Council go into executive session as a committee of the whole to discuss possible real estate matters. Mr. Vanover seconded. The motion passed with seven affirmative votes.
Council went into executive session at 7:47 p.m. and reconvened at 8:27 p.m.
Council adjourned at 8:28 p.m.
Edward F. Knox
Clerk of Council/Finance Director
Kathy McNear, President of Council