Council was called to order on February 19, 1997 at 7:00 p.m. by President of Council Randy Danbury.
The Pledge of Allegiance was recited by the governmental body and those in attendance. The Invocation was given by Mr. Knox.
Roll call was taken by Mr. Knox. Present were Council members Boice, Galster, Manis, McNear, Vanover, Wilson and Danbury.
The minutes of January 15, 1997 were approved with 7 affirmative votes.
The minutes of February 5, 1997 were approved with 7 affirmative votes.
Mayor Webster introduced Police Chief Jim Freland who introduced two new employees.
Chief Freland introduced Aubrey Goodwin from Rantool, Illinois who started last Monday. He previously worked at the Hamilton County Juvenile Detention Center. He is a graduate of Grambling State University with a bachelor's degree in Criminal Justice. He starts at the Butler County Police Academy next Monday. He should graduate in May, go through our field training and be on the street in August.
Leslie Helton is originally from Maryland and worked for the Maryland State Police for thirteen years. Recently she worked for the Village of Glendale as a clerk and she also worked part-time for the Hamilton County Park Rangers. She came most recently from GE Capital. She is a very quick learner but she has found out we're a lot different than Glendale.
Chief Freland said this is the first time we have been up to strength in about four years. We have recently selected an officer to fill the vacant position in Investigations. The juvenile officer position that was given to us last year will be filled in July or August.
COMMITTEE AND OFFICIAL REPORTS
RULES AND LAWS - no report
PUBLIC RELATIONS - Mrs. McNear said I did have conversations with the members after our last meeting and we have decided we are going to forego the Student Government Night this year due to a lack of interest on the part of the school system. Perhaps we'll try again next year.
PUBLIC HEALTH, SAFETY AND WELFARE - no report
PUBLIC WORKS - Mr. Vanover reported the following schedule has been developed for the 1997 asphalt repair resurfacing program and the 1997 crack seal program. We plan to advertise on/about March 5; bid opening and recommendations set for March 19 and we hope to award the contract around April 2. For the 1997 concrete repair program the project schedule is to advertise on February 28, open bids March 14, recommendations to Council on March 19 and award contracts on April 2. We have withdrawn the Rockcrest work from the 1996 street repair program because the contractor was unable to complete the work last fall and bids were open today. We would like to award this contract at the next meeting.
PUBLIC UTILITIES - Mr. Vanover said we had a meeting this afternoon with Warner Cable with some of the ongoing problems that have been brought to our attention. They were very gracious and we were given the grand tour of their new facility. They are working diligently to bring their operations up to scale. We're hoping to get things ironed out. If anybody does have any problems or concerns please let us know. With your approval, Mr. President, there was a letter sent in referencing this topic.
Mr. Knox read the letter from Ray George, 12070 Crossings Drive dated February 12.
Dear Members of Council: It is important I believe, to advise Council that Warner Cable is telling Springdale subscribers who are concerned about a recent change in programming, that the change is due to Springdale's City Council's desire for more public access channels. I was told to take the matter up with Council. This happened Saturday, February 8. What I had noticed is that Warner had removed its preview channel from Channel 24 and replaced it with public access programming from Waycross Community Television. I searched through the channels to see if it had been moved to another location. It hadn't and I telephoned Warner to ask about the change. After waiting 31 minutes for a service representative, Karen answered and advised me that the change was the responsibility of Council and other civic leaders, not Warner Cable. The other civic leaders were not identified. Instead I was told to call ICRC for those names. I telephoned Mr. Knox to verify that Council was aware of the change. He said that I said we were not and to our knowledge Council wasn't either. He suggested I write to Council. I don't know the rationale behind this move, although it has become more than inconvenience to me now. I suspect this programming change is more an attempt by Warner to sell its new on-line preview service now that it has upgraded the City to fiber, or to sell subscriptions to their Channel Guide, and not in response to a need for more access channels. As a citizen of Springdale I find it highly unprofessional that Warner subscribers were not advised in advance of the change and that I was given blatantly inaccurate information. Thank you for your time. Sincerely, Ray George
Mr. Knox stated I might comment, Mr. President, that Pat Havlick, now Pat Stern from the ICRC, told me a week prior to receiving this letter, that they had warned Warner Cable about this; that they had been doing this over a period of time and they had asked them to stop. This letter shows that they have not stopped saying all these things are the fault of this Council.
Mr. Vanover said that was one of the topics that was brought up. The committee will be provided with copies of the script that the telephone people are using and we are working to reach a more agreeable and truthful answer for these questions. That is one of the things we hope to have finalized coming out of that meeting today.
CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS - Mr. Wilson reported the Community Center HVAC replacement bids were opened today, February 19, and we would like to award this contract at the next meeting. Carmen Creek improvements survey work is completed and the project is now under design. We anticipate submitting the plans to the Corps of Engineers in early April with approval by the end of April. The project schedule will then be advertised and we will open bids in May 1997; contract for the work, June 1997; have construction in June/July/August timeframe. The final environmental document is ready to submit to ODOT on the State Route 747 CSX grade separation as soon as we receive comments from OEPA on the sole source aquifer screening report which was submitted in January. We anticipate this project will be approved to begin the detail design work by mid 1997.
FINANCE COMMITTEE - no report
PLANNING COMMISSION - Mr. Galster stated they met February 11. Douglas and Arlene Eades requested preliminary plan approval of the Charing Crossing Phase I revised. They have approval right now for three buildings that would house two units in each building and they are presenting a modification that would have three buildings that would have four units in each building. The commission was not comfortable with the changes. As a matter of fact, the applicant was making changes on the number of cars, garages, etc., while we were close to making a motion so that was tabled until our March meeting. The preliminary plan approval of the proposed Dave and Buster's was approved 6-0 with one abstention. Dave and Buster's is looking to locate at Tri-County Commons next to Roberds Furniture. There were a couple of items that were stipulated: the two eastern most parking fields of the four surrounding lots be developed in the parking area at this time. They had parking all the way around the rest of the building and we have narrowed that down to only what they need so we don't encourage further retail development at that location. The second item was that a 60 foot pylon sign be combined with North American Properties, which was previously approved by Planning and there would be no more pole signs allowed for this property. Item 3 is that they reduce the height of the monument sign at Kemper Road that was in combination with the existing Roberds sign and there were additional staff concerns. That should be coming to Council because it will be a change to the PUD. That will be advertised for public hearing March 19. GTE, 111 Tri County parkway requested final plan approval of the new office building. That was approved 7-0.
BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS - Mrs. McNear gave the January report. She said the meeting was held on Tuesday, January 21 at 7:30 p.m. Four members out of seven were in attendance and a majority of three people was required to have approval for any requested variances for the evening. Mr. Mitchell, the chairperson, explained that to the applicants in the event they would like to table their requests until a full complement of members could be present at the next meeting. Jake Sweeney Chevrolet Geo, 33 W. Kemper Road, requested a variance for additional signage. They are currently under a variance and they wanted 736 square feet of signage. There had been some changes since we had tabled the issue from the meeting prior. We had some questions that couldn't be answered by the architect. They said Geo would be dropped from the line so they had to eliminate that from the facia of the building. There is also the question of the Geo pole sign which is on Princeton Pike. Since they will be eliminating that from the dealership they wanted to keep the pole sign there until they could do away with the line and have one more year on the variance so that people who needed service would know they are still servicing that equipment. Part of our variance was that they would be removing the sign by October 1, 1999. That was passed 4-0.
Mr. David Kauffman, 11081 Springfield Pike, requested a variance to allow for a rear yard setback of five feet. This is located next to Springdale Family Medicine at Sharon and Springfield Pike. The two doctors' offices traded a piece of property that would allow the Family Medical Practice to have additional parking spaces and it also allowed the veterinarian's office to have a social area for the animals outside of the office. It was mutually agreeable to both businesses and it was granted 4-0.
Duke Realty Investments requested a variance to allow three leasing signs at 134 Merchant Street. Real estate ground signs must not exceed seven feet in height. The three signs were installed by the agent even after discussing the ordinance with the City Building Department. The sides were 9 feet, 6 inches high. We did discuss the possibility of having them cut the signs down so that they would be in compliance. They didn't want to make new signs because they said they would have to go to extra expense. Considering the fact that these signs could be up as long as three years, we felt it necessary that they make new signs. Their request was denied 1-3.
Tri County Shell, 11595 Princeton Pike, requested a variance to add an additional 16 square feet to their pole sign. Mr. Okum called it the totem pole and I think that's a pretty good representation of what we have there. The pole sign should not exceed 50 square feet. They are already on a variance for 160 square feet. The request was denied 0-4.
Sterling House, 11320 Springfield Pike requested a variance to allow 31 parking spaces and to have a waste container in the side yard. Eighty-nine spaces are required for the size of the building they are putting there but the residents who live there don't drive. There are normally 4 or 5 people who drive. The average age of the residents is 89 years old. Holiday traffic doesn't affect this at all either, because normally the family members pick up the residents and take them elsewhere for the holidays. This was granted 4-0.
Mrs. Boice reported BZA met last evening at 7:30 p.m. There were six members in attendance. Mr. Roy Funderburg, 908 Cedarhill Drive, requested a variance to allow his satellite dish to be positioned 21' high on a pole next to the main building. After some discussion the applicant decided to withdraw that request and is going to possibly look at a smaller dish or see if there is some other arrangement that could be made whereby he would not need a variance at all.
Kemba Credit Union at 211 Northland Boulevard requested a variance to allow the installation of a ground sign on the right of way. They said their customers are having trouble finding the driveway where they are to turn in. I found that rather puzzling. That has been an established business for ten years but apparently they have a great deal of new customers coming who seem to be having trouble finding where to turn in. That variance was granted 5-0.
A.G. Hauck Co. requested a variance to allow 112 parking spaces for the Fitness Store at 11336 Princeton Pike. That item was tabled at the request of the applicant. It is our understanding they will be back on the agenda in March.
Edward and Rita Bramkamp requested a variance to allow the transfer of property which would result in a 66 foot lot width. This deals with the Springdale Family Medicine property. It's really a minor thing and that variance was granted 6-0.
Springdale Pony Keg, 369 West Kemper Road, requested a variance to allow painted and aluminum signs in the window. We are expecting to see a lot of these coming in. From what I observed last night we are going to hold a very hard line on these. That variance was denied 6-0.
Skyline Chili, 85 East Kemper Road, requested a variance to allow a neon window sign. That was denied 6-0.
Mr. and Mrs. Mark Riesenberg, 11892 Ventura Court, requested a variance to allow their deck to be located 12 feet from the rear property line. This is one of these odd shaped lots, very difficult to work with. The way they have arranged it, I think it will work out very nicely. With any of these type things, all the surrounding neighbors are notified and do sign that they are aware a variance is being considered. That was granted 6-0.
GTE, 111 Tri-County Parkway, requested a variance to allow some warehouse use and parking beyond 250 feet. There was a lot of discussion on this. I think they have really laid that development out well. As far as warehousing is concerned I felt it was very minimal. I felt many people on the board did agree with that. Mrs. McNear chose to remove herself from the discussion and from the area because of a possible conflict. That was granted 5-0.
In discussion with my peers that the Mayor had suggested that we might come in line with all the other boards and meet at 7:00 p.m. in the evening and knowing how we want to work with everybody, we will now be meeting at 7:00 p.m.
Mrs. Boice said the Tax Review Board met last evening. When a tax payer
feels he/she has not been treated fairly, or has a question, etc., he/she files a report requesting a review. That report is dropped into my file. I immediately check with the Tax Commissioner, Rhonda Ridge. I contact the other two members and we concur on a date. The meeting usually takes place at 6:30 p.m. We send a letter registered mail to the applicant advising the person when the meeting is held and explaining to them that we would want the applicant to be in attendance but that a decision would be made whether the applicant is present or not. In the last three meetings we have not had a single applicant attend that meeting. I just want to say to any of you out there watching this, if you do request a tax review board hearing, I would encourage you to come. I could not imagine why you would not want to come and state what your concerns are. The report that is given to me usually has two or three sentences, very cryptic and sometimes hostile. If that person is not there we have no opportunity to hear his/her side of the story. Was there a special reason? Were you out of town? Was there illness in the family? What was the reason for your being late? I just find it strange that we are going through all this at the request of a taxpayer and he/she chooses not to come. For what it's worth, please do come. That's what we are there for.
BOARD OF HEALTH - Mr. Vanover said we have hired a part-time nurse. Her name is Dru Hester and she is very qualified. We are very much impressed with her. She will be in attendance at the next board meeting and hopefully we can introduce her to Council. I will pass out a copy of the nuisance animal control figures. Last year we trapped 236 critters. The biggest offenders were the raccoons and the second biggest were the squirrels that decided to move inside.
CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION - Mr. Coleman said on December 4, 1996, Debbie Dunfee, Administrative Secretary, was assigned to the Civil Service Commission as a secretary. This was a direct result of the City of a recommendation by the City's labor attorney, primarily because we have been overwhelmed with a lot of work in the last twelve month period. The Civil Service Commission is very happy that Debbie has been made available to assist us and we welcome her in that newly assigned position. The Civil Service Commission did meet on January 30. At this meeting the Civil Service Commission declined to entertain an appeal for a hearing for a candidate for the firefighter's position and we authorized the City's labor attorney to fully communicate this position to the candidate's attorney. Also at this meeting we amended the rules of the Civil Service Commission to allow candidates within the top ten list of qualified applicants to be considered for more than two certifications. Hopefully, this will help us be more expedient in the selection process as well as to make sure we give everyone an opportunity. We also modified the Civil Service Commission rules to eliminate the use of the independent panel as a part of the selection criteria for public safety positions. This was a tremendous scheduling effort. It involved bringing in individuals from other municipalities. It was very time consuming. We think we have done a very good job of identifying applicants for positions in the City and as a result we don't see a need to string out the selection process. This change will not become effective until the next selection process.
Mr. Galster asked when someone takes the Civil Service exam does that expire after a certain amount of time? I know we want to keep them so you don't have to keep getting a new ten people on the list but is there a point where they have to retake the test?
Mr. Coleman replied we have been keeping those for a twelve month period.
Mr. Osborn stated the maximum term they may exist is two years. After one year the appointing authority may request that the list be replaced if it has been significantly depleted.
Ms. Manis asked what does two certifications mean? If there are three openings, regardless of being in one year, you would have to re-test or re-advertise?
Mr. Coleman replied previously, after a person had been certified twice which means they were looked at initially and then looked at again, then they came off the list and would have to be tested again if it was outside of the one year period and up to the two year period. After the two year period they would have to be tested again. With the new certification change we can now look at a person an additional time without going through the process again.
Mr. Osborn said the reason we recommended that change to the Civil Service Commission is that we previously had the opportunity to see the three highest candidates on a list and the rule that went along with that was that after the candidate had been seen twice, he/she was passed over for a third certification off the list. The state changed the law to allow the top ten candidates to be submitted to the appointing authority and at the same time the state changed its law to say after a person had been certified four times the appointing authority could request that he/she be removed. It wasn't mandatory; it was an option and it was after four certifications, and again because the number of people being seen increased from three to ten. Our rules were changed to allow that certification of ten names but we failed to pick up the State's certification of four times. We are getting closer to the current State law. We are saying three times and adjusting to the change that was made last year where ten names were certified instead of three.
Ms. Manis said so we look at ten people. Before we could only do that twice and then we had to throw them all out.
Mr. Osborn stated if you have ten people and select one, then you get nine names back for a second certification plus one new name. You select somebody again and now eight of those people who have had two interviews are thrown off the list arbitrarily. We want to avoid that and have asked that it be three times minimum and then optional, not mandatory.
O-K-I - Mayor Webster reported that O-K-I met last Thursday, February 13. The big news from there is to alert everyone to beat the jam. The orange barrels will be rolling out March 3. They'd like to remind everybody to find alternate routes, car pooling, avoid peak travel times, take the bus if possible, anything you can do to spread the word for people to stay off I-71 during peak hours. There are also a number of other construction projects and O-K-I would be more than happy to send a representative out to talk to us about that if we like or send us brochures to help our residents get through this.
Ms. Manis asked if they mentioned the light rail again.
Mayor Webster responded I did not receive any information on that.
Mr. Danbury asked Mayor Webster if he knew what sections of I-71 they will be working on and the Mayor replied no.
MAYOR'S REPORT - As a follow up to Mrs. Boice's report regarding Skyline Chili and their signs, they were on the court docket today and at the last minute it was for dismissal because between last night's rejection of a variance and the court convening today they complied with the sign ordinance. So I'd like to commend the BZA for holding tight and I'd also like to compliment Skyline for doing what they were asked to do, sign-wise. The sign had been there for some time the applicant contended but that is totally resolved.
I'd like to bring Council up to date on our local Chamber of Commerce. As most of you know, we have been working with some business leaders for the best part of a year, trying to get our Chamber in place. I am pleased to report that we do have a director. He is a volunteer. He's a retired executive who lives at Maple Knoll. He stepped forward at the last meeting and said he'd be more than happy to serve as the director. Cory Van Buskirk, plant manager at Avon, is chairman. Other community business leaders have stepped forward to assume the leadership of this committee. Mr. Osborn and I are doing less and less. The group has really taken the ball and run with it. I'd like to commend all those people for that. The next meeting is February 28 at 8:00 a.m. here in these Chambers. If any business people would like to attend we'd be more than happy to have you. We have lots of volunteers for the subcommittees. There's still room for more so if you are interested in getting involved please let us know or show up on February 28. Very shortly there will be a City wide membership drive.
Just yesterday we received a draft of the survey. Copies will be made available starting tomorrow. They'll probably be available to Council next week. We've given the survey folks the green light to have those copies printed. It's a very voluminous report. There is a summary that is about a third of that size. I'll be very interesting to hear Council's comments on that. I'd also like to ask, Mr. President, and this is Council's choosing, if you would like to have Kim Downing from the Policy Research Institute come out to our March 5 meeting.
CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR'S REPORT - Mr. Knox said if Council will remember at the last meeting I was talking about the possibility of filing a complaint with the Federal Communications Commission about the Time Warner rate structure. That's the reason I called the ICRC, to find out if there are any good words we can use in that respect. Mrs. Stern recommended that we not take any action. There appears on the surface to be no violation so if we file a complaint it won't fly. Secondly, it will dilute the current effort going on. ICRC in combination with 14 other communities is attempting to get the FCC to change or desist with this social contract they have with the cable companies. They feel after a long and hard study that that's the real problem and an effort needs to be made in that area. If we file a complaint it will just dilute the effort. They recommend that we take no action at this time and after reviewing the data I would concur with their recommendation. It is up to Council as to how you would like to go about this. I will await your decision on that.
ADMINISTRATOR'S REPORT - Mr. Osborn said the bid opening for the HVAC service contract for the Fire Station, Police Department and Community Center was held on February 7. We received four bids. The low bid was Applied Mechanical Services which is the City's current vendor for those three buildings. The renewal rate is $875 a month. If we look back at the expiring two year agreement at a monthly rate of $850 we're seeing a percentage increase of just under 3%. The term of agreement will be 23 months so we can get this contract in sync with the one we have on this facility we're in tonight. We've had two separate contracts because this building was under warranty for some time and then we extended an agreement with the existing vendor to continue that maintenance . Now, however, we've gone with Spears for this building and at the end of this 23 month period we will bring both of these under one contract.
I'd also like to bring your attention to the scope of services for the East Kemper Road traffic analysis which I included in the packet that was submitted to you last week. The scope of services would be looking at traffic conditions on East Kemper Road. The four elements of the scope would be to do a baseline count and evaluation of existing traffic, project future traffic demands from future growth in the area, evaluate the impact of that future growth on existing signalized intersections and then evaluate alternative scenarios to mitigate the traffic concentration. I expect to see a proposal from the Engineer's Office by February 26 and I would like to bring a recommendation and legislation before you on March 5. I think it's important that we cause this to get underway as soon as possible. It's going to take up to three months to generate the report. If we can get it done in a three month period it would be to our advantage. We are seeing more and more interest in that part of the corridor. We are talking to a major developer right now for another tract of land on that corridor and frankly, it would really be helpful if we had a more comprehensive study in place to be able to judge the impact of the growth that's undoubtedly going to try to occur on that corridor. We will be bringing a recommendation to you at the next meeting on that issue.
Similarly, if you look at the 1997 budget, there were three projects which were scheduled for design in 1997 and construction in 1998. Of those three projects the one we feel has the highest priority is storm sewer improvements on Kemper Road. If you'll recall, we had attempted to obtain funding for a more expansive project that involved bike lanes as well as enclosing the drainage ditches and installing storm sewers. We have been unable to get funding. In order to stage this project we are looking to do a storm sewer improvement on that part of West Kemper Road from a point just west of Greenlawn eastward to the creek channel by the Presbyterian Church. This will, in our opinion, be able to divert the water that now flows under Kemper Road at Greenlawn and down along Greenlawn through the residential subdivision and causes a substantial amount of property damage on a regular basis. We would expect to be able to complete the planning and design on this work in 1997 and we would then begin to acquire the necessary easements, both temporary and permanent to do the work. That's why we wanted to get started this year and plan for construction in 1998. At the next meeting I would anticipate bringing legislation before you requesting an authorization for the engineering services for that project.
I want to report on a presentation the Department Directors, the Mayor and I made to Cincom Systems, Inc., on February 13. We had an opportunity to meet the executive staff of Cincom including their Chief Executive Officer, Thomas Nees. It was a good, very informal type of presentation. We had a nice dialogue, good mix before and afterwards so that we got to meet people on an individual basis and develop a working relationship. We were able to truly show them a welcome to the community and I think they have a good appreciation for the services that they can expect and how to go about obtaining them if they feel they need assistance.
Finally, I want to remind Council we are going to have the Employee Appreciation Dinner on March 1 at 6:00 p.m. at the Maple Knoll Senior Center. We would certainly encourage you all to attend. It's an enjoyable evening and it's growing in popularity every year and I think this year will be even better than last.
Ms. Manis asked if we had ever done a traffic study in that area before.
Mr. Osborn replied we did that in part. KZF did a study for us in that area many years ago when a company that was looking at the Kroger property wanted to develop it with a shopping center back in the early 80s. There was a traffic study then.
LAW DIRECTOR'S REPORT -- no report
ENGINEER'S REPORT - Mr. Shuler stated earlier Mr. Vanover reported we were completing the plans for the street program and that we will be ready to go out for bid around March 1. As part of our process we submit to all the utilities the work we are planning to do so we can encourage them to get their repairs done before we do our resurfacing. In particular this year, we wanted Water Works to fix the constant leak we have been dealing with for some years on Kemper Road right in front of Sweeney. You may have noticed that wet spot from time to time. Late last week we finally heard back from Water Works. They have looked at that area and have determined that they will not be fixing the leak. They want to replace the entire main from S.R. 747 to S.R. 4 and this is scheduled in 1999. We have asked them to consider that in their capital budget for 1998; however, that replacement is scheduled for 1999. With that in mind we do not believe it would be prudent to proceed with a resurfacing because of the comments that we always get. We finish our street project and the first thing that happens is that the utilities come through and cut a trench through there. We recommend that we postpone the resurfacing on Kemper Road in that section this year. If you remember, a good part of the street program budget this year was to resurface Kemper Road from Lawnview to S. R. 747. In lieu of that we would like to add that area to our crack sealing project because we do want to keep the structural integrity of that street intact until we can do the resurfacing work. We would like to remove that street from the resurfacing to the crack sealing portion of our program. We had budgeted about $160,000 for the repair and resurfacing of that area because of the length and width of that street. We have not estimated the change that would add to the crack sealing portion of our program. Mr. Sears would also like to do the same crack sealing on Northland which we had not had in the program before. The bottom line is by adding the two or three items of crack sealing, maybe some additional curb work we didn't budget for and eliminating the resurfacing, the program will probably be about $100,000 less than we had originally reported to Council this year. We are proceeding on that basis unless somebody has an objection and we're going to try to stick as close to our time schedule as we had reported to Council before.
COMMUNICATIONS - none
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
ORDINANCE NO. 8-1997
Mr. Knox asked that it be tabled until the second meeting in May. At the second meeting in May we will have complete figures as to the impact of allowing County taxes to be equated with Municipal taxes. In a short survey we found the possibility that the revenue loss may be as great as $45,000. We thought that Council would need to take a better look at that. Although a short survey may have skewed the figures, we're not sure so we recommend that we wait until the end of the tax year and we have all the figures. Then Council can proceed accordingly. At that time the ordinance would still read to take effect on January 1 this year so it really would make no difference to the residents but it would give Council a better group of data to work with.
Mrs. Boice made a motion to table the ordinance until the second meeting in May. Mr. Wilson seconded.
The motion to table passed with 7 affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 9-1997 "AN ORDINANCE ESTABLISHING AN URBAN RENEWAL AREA AND AUTHORIZING THE PREPARATION OF AN URBAN RENEWAL PLAN"
Mrs. McNear made a motion to adopt and Mr. Vanover seconded.
Ms. Manis said regarding Section 3, will anything have to come back to us before it's done to the area over there?
Mr. Osborn replied yes. This evening we are declaring the area an urban renewal area and authorizing a study. Once the study is completed it will be brought back to City Council and certainly no action can be taken without the authority and approval of City Council. All you are doing is making the designation and authorizing the study.
Ms. Manis said by declaring it this type of area is it similar to declaring it a PUD?
Mr. Osborn responded a PUD would have regulations relating to density, setback, land use, etc. This is designating the area as being important to the City for economic growth. It's recognized as having become stagnated. There is a deterioration of property. Property ownership is too diverse to encourage development. The infrastructure is inadequate to encourage development. Essentially we are bringing attention to the area, putting a spotlight on it. We will come up with a plan that hopefully will encourage the private sector to take the initiative to make improvements. I might add that we sent out a letter to the property owners. We heard from three of the four. Two seemed interested in trying to do something with us. The third had contact with the Law Director and that individual felt there might be some tax advantage to him should that occur. We think it will generate some interest in the private sector to partner up with us to cause a renewal in the area.
Ms. Manis said if we do away with roads can we make our own setbacks or do they go by the current code?
Mr. Osborn said we can do that much like we did the corridor. The Springfield Pike corridor has a separate setback requirement, sign regulation. All that is unique to the corridor. Let's take the property adjacent to the property we just purchased. That owner indicated some interest in partnering up with us but he said he would like to see the building on the street and the parking behind it, and I would agree. I think we are going to work with the people on things like that. I think our planner will help us.
Mayor Webster said this could be designated as a PUD if there is an interest there.
Ordinance 9-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 10-1997 "AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO EXECUTE AN AGREEMENT WITH THE VILLAGE OF GLENDALE TO PROVIDE PRISONER CONFINEMENT"
Mr. Vanover made a motion to adopt and Mr. Galster seconded.
Ordinance 10-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 11-1997 "AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH CINCINNATI GAS AND ELECTRIC COMPANY FOR THE INSTALLATION OF ADDITIONAL STREET LIGHTING IN GLENVIEW SUBDIVISION AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY"
Mr. Wilson made a motion to adopt and Mr. Galster seconded.
Mr. Galster said we covered the assessment with the Glenview property owners in Resolution No. 4. Does that need to be noted in the ordinance?
Mr. Osborn responded no, they are companion legislation but they don't need to be cross referenced.
Mr. Wilson said I think we had the consent of everybody in the subdivision that they wanted these lights.
Mr. Osborn stated the Homeowners' Association circulated petitions until they had a clear majority and then they stopped circulating petitions because of all the people they approached, they only had one rejection so they just didn't bother going to every door in the subdivision because this had been discussed at a Homeowners' Association meeting in April 1996. We made a presentation along with CG&E and I think it has been a matter of discussion among the homeowners from that time on. When the petition was circulated it received virtually unanimous support.
Mr. Wilson said so we are not going to have repercussions, that is, people coming before Council in mass numbers?
Mr. Osborn said the majority will want it. If there is no appeal there won't be a need for an equalization board but should you receive an appeal the next step would be for Council to appoint an equalization board to hear those appeals.
Ms. Manis said it would still be handled that way even though they have their subdivision committee.
Mr. Osborn replied this is a City project using City regulations and authority to assess so the appeal would come to a City appointed assessment board. I asked that the agreement be distributed so you see what it looks like.
Ordinance 11-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 12-1997 "AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH TRI-STATE FORD TRUCKS FOR THE PURCHASE OF A 1997 15,000 GVW DUMP TRUCK WITH SALT SPREADER AND SNOW PLOW AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY"
Mr. Vanover made a motion to adopt and Mrs. McNear seconded.
Ordinance 12-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 13-1997 "AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH TRI-STATE FORD TRUCKS FOR THE PURCHASE OF A 1997 31,000 GVW DUMP TRUCK WITH SALT SPREADER AND SNOW PLOW AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY"
Mr. Galster made a motion to adopt and Mr. Vanover seconded.
Ordinance 13-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
Ms. Manis asked if we know the delivery date on these.
Mayor Webster replied it would be within 120 to 220 days.
Ordinance 13-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 14-1997 "AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH PFLUM, KLAUSMEIER & GEHRUM CONSULTANTS, INC. FOR PLANNING AND ZONING CONSULTING SERVICES AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY"
Mrs. McNear made a motion to adopt and Mr. Galster seconded.
Mr. Osborn said the rate schedule that is attached is different from the one I had previously tended to you as part of the legislative packet two weeks ago. That was a combination of the consultant's error and my error. Apparently her secretary had sent us the wrong fee schedule and I, without making a proper check of it, had just attached it. Then we discovered the error. We have now corrected that. Secondly, this refers to attaching the agreement but all we are really doing is changing the fee schedule. The document itself is remaining unchanged.
Mr. Danbury said I see there is almost a 6% increase from 1996 to 1997. Do you think it might be advantageous to do a multi-year and see if we can hold the line?
Mr. Osborn replied you have to keep in mind that we were engaging them well before January 1996 and they had a fee schedule in place. I really have not looked back at how far we had that fee schedule in place but they did increase the fee schedule corporately in April 1996 but we held them to the existing one all the way through to this point. I think that this adjustment is to get them in synch with us and reflect where they wanted to be in a relationship with us. From this point forward I think we would treat them as we do the Law Director and City Engineer and look at increases on a cost of living basis pretty close to what we are doing with the employees.
Mr. Danbury said this just jumps out. Mr. Shuler hasn't come in with anything that exorbitant.
Mr. Osborn said another factor we ought to consider as well is the volume of work. We provide the City Engineer's Office with contracts that are substantially bigger in terms of dollars on an annual basis. I think that's why we can negotiate a little tougher with the City Engineer's Office because there is more at stake. Frankly, I don't think what we are proposing to pay here for the planner is out of line with the market. We have a very good consultant. I think this is a situation where you have to have trust and confidence in the person that you are employing. I think we could get people for less money than this but I don't know that we would have that same rapport and confidence in the firm we are hoping to engage.
Mr. Galster stated in general most of the contracts we do with them we bid out anyway. We can go out and get competitive bids and make sure they are in line in any major work. A lot of these costs are passed on to the applicants. I know from Planning Commission if somebody is coming in and we need to have our planner review it, then the applicant ends up paying a lot of the hourly charges.
Ms. Manis said I know you said Mr. Shuler's firm gets a lot of the big work, a lot of money work, but Pflum, Klausmeier does a lot of work for Planning and what I would call tough work because it is looking at the plans and telling us what to do with the developers. Sorry Mr. Shuler, but it's not making a driveway.
Mr. Osborn said I think Mr. Shuler would disagree with you. He has to go out in the field and talk to an irate property owner.
Ms. Manis replied they are there listening to us, not that you aren't either, but they are very good and Ms. McBride gives us lots of great input and I enjoyed working with her on Planning when I was there. It is a lot of money but they are well worth it.
Mrs. Boice stated I would certainly agree that they are well worth it. I would not agree with the comments that the Engineer has the easy work. In my eight years on Planning I found I spent as much time talking to the Engineer as anybody. Planners are wonderful but when we get to the nitty gritty I wouldn't want to be without that Engineer.
Ordinance 14-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 15-1997 "AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO AN AGREEMENT WITH ROZZI'S FAMOUS FIREWORKS, INC. TO PROVIDE A FIREWORKS DISPLAY DURING THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE'S FOURTH OF JULY FESTIVITIES"
Mr. Galster asked if it is the same amount as last year and Mr. Osborn said yes.
RESOLUTION NO. 4-1997 "DECLARING THE NECESSITY OF INSTALLING DECORATIVE LIGHTING IN THE GLENVIEW SUBDIVISION, DETERMINING TO ACCESS COSTS"
Mr. Galster made a motion to adopt and Mr. Wilson seconded.
Mr. Osborn said in Section V it refers to the City issuing bonds in anticipation of collection. We are actually going to finance this out of our Capital Improvements budget so this is standard form language that would not apply in this situation. Secondly, under Section VI, in terms of the City Engineer's cost estimate, since we have a hard number in hand from CG&E, that won't be necessary. We have a cost of $228.49 per unit based on 89 lots and the cost that has been established by CG&E. Exhibit A shows you where the specific locations of light fixtures will be and Exhibit B lists the current homeowners or property owners in the Glenview Subdivision. Following the adoption of this resolution, the Clerk's Office will send by registered letter a notice that contains information on the cost for the installation and the appeal rights that the property owner has should he/she object to the assessment.
Ms. Manis asked if Zaring carries the lots until they sell the property.
Mr. Osborn replied the cost will be assessed against the property and Zaring will probably pass that along to the buyer as part of the cost of the property.
Ms. Manis stated it says you have 21 days to appeal. If there is a sale of the home later, will the new homeowner have a chance to appeal?
Mr. Osborn responded it depends on what stage they are in. If they were obligated to do due diligence and this occurred prior to closing, then we would not forgive it. But if this occurred after closing it should have been something they negotiated with the property owner and it should have been put on the table in terms of assessments against the property. We have tried to work with people in the past on issues like that to try to treat it on a case by case basis.
Ms. Manis said this probably wouldn't be as bad as if we tried to do a driveway over two years.
Resolution R4-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
Ms. Manis said I had the opportunity to meet the driveway apron man this weekend. The new letter did have the disclaimer on the bottom. He was very friendly but he did ask me a question. I'm sure we will be hit with an assessment. It's a necessity that we get a new driveway apron but we are also looking at a whole new driveway. He said in some cities when you have a new driveway and apron and they replace the sidewalk portion also, the city will reimburse some of that money. Do we have a policy on that?
Mr. Osborn said we do not reimburse or allow you to assess improvements on private property. That would be something between you and the contractor, whether that's the City's contractor where you make a side deal, or with your own contractor to get a better price by replacing your driveway at the same time, but the assessment of the cost over time would only be for those improvements in the public right of way.
Ms. Manis said the portion of the sidewalk that is there, does the City give any credit for having that done?
Mr. Osborn replied if it is in need of replacement we will replace it at our expense.
Ms. Manis said if we were having the whole thing done, can we contact our engineer and say we are going to do it?
Mr. Shuler said we were talking about this project with Mr. Sears the other day, and we intend to look at both curb and sidewalk on those areas where aprons are being replaced, knowing that it's more efficient and less troublesome for the resident to do it all at one time. We have not, to my knowledge, reimbursed anyone where they have, on their own, replaced sidewalk when they are doing driveways. That question hasn't come up before to my knowledge.
Mr. Osborn stated we do have money in the budget to do exactly what you are talking about. When our contractor is out there replacing an apron we anticipate there will be situations where we will have to replace the driveway apron or curb at the same time. In those cases we are going to have one contractor do the whole thing. Give us some time to look at that issue you just raised and we'll get back to you.
Ms. Manis asked do we have any idea when we'll be coming out with a cost?
Mr. Osborn replied we expect to have a recommendation to you by the second meeting in March in terms of the criteria. Council will pick the criteria based upon the inventory we've done. At that point we'll be able to have the City Engineer give us a cost per square foot estimate. I suggested the other day that we bid the project out at the same time we bring in the resolution of necessity because that way we would be able to give them a firm number.
Mr. Shuler said we're also going to look at some costs so when Council does discuss this March 19 you have an idea of the magnitude of the dollars.
Mr. Osborn said beyond that, before we go to a resolution of necessity we intend to bid the project so we can do just like we did this evening and work off a hard number from the contract.
Ms. Manis said I'm sure a lot of people who have gotten this want to know which is the better price.
Mr. Osborn said we can't tell yet. We are putting an article in the newsletter explaining the apron program and the process that will be followed. Hopefully after they see that information they will be able to call us and raise questions like you have. We have had other contact from folks who have received the same solicitation.
Mrs. Boice said when you are considering that issue of the sidewalks, is this going to be retroactive because there are a lot of people who have put in driveways with no consideration for that and have done their own sidewalks.
Mr. Osborn responded we will have to come up with a way to coordinate the program. Right now we have intentions of having the possibility of having two contracts out at the same time; one for the City wide concrete repair and one for the apron repair. Now one contractor could get both projects but on the chance that they don't we're putting additional money into the apron project so that in those situations where a sidewalk or curb needs to be replaced at the location where an apron's being repaired or replace, we would have that single contractor doing it.
Mrs. Boice stated I am talking an entire new driveway.
Mr. Osborn said what Ms. Manis is talking about is when replacing the sidewalk or curb we need to coordinate with the private contractor who is doing that in a location where we know we have to replace sidewalk or curb. Those folks will have to come in and get a permit from us. Our inspectors can go out and look at the condition of the sidewalk and see if we have marked it or the curb for replacement and coordinate from there. We just need to work up the mechanics of coordinating so we can replace the sidewalk at the same time the apron is out so we don't have a person out of his/her driveway twice, once for the apron and once for the sidewalk. That reminds me of something we did eight years ago. We may be replacing half of the curb across a person's driveway apron and they are replacing their apron. They may want to depress their driveway apron at the same time. We give them credit for the curb we would be replacing and they pay for the remainder of the curb across their apron and depress it. If you have a rolled curb and you want to depress your apron and we have a situation where we would have been replacing some curb anyhow, we will only require the property owner to reimburse us for that portion of the curb we would not have had to replace otherwise.
Mrs. Boice said getting back to the question of sidewalks. I know many people, myself included, who have replaced driveways and the sidewalk went in as part of that. Is this going to be retroactive?
Mr. Osborn replied no, we have to come up with a system to coordinate with private contractors who will be replacing aprons in locations where we may be coming along later.
Mrs. Boice said I understand that. What I'm saying is before when this thought has never been given, that a person replaced the driveway, the sidewalk was bad and he/she went ahead and did it. Are we going to grandfather all these people?
Mr. Osborn replied if anyone does it on his/her own I'm not suggesting we give him/her credit. What I'm suggesting is that we'll get in there, try to coordinate so that we do the work at the same time.
Ms. Manis said the man told us he could replace our driveway and apron and leave the sidewalk because it's not our duty to replace the sidewalk even if it's falling apart. The City has to pay that. He said usually people want it all the same so he would do the whole thing and would we get a credit from the City from the portion of the sidewalk?
Mr. Osborn replied no, I don't think we would do that. I was looking at trying not to inconvenience the resident by doing two projects instead of one project.
Ms. Manis said if our sidewalk was crumbling and you were going to replace it, yes, but just because we had it done, no.
Mr. Danbury said let's say the sidewalk on your whole street is bad and you have the lone one that is nice. You want something uniform where everything is the same. If the City is going to replace it, why don't they just give you credit for what you are doing if you replace it? On the other hand, I think you need to have the whole community replace it at one time.
Mr. Osborn said I think if you look at our sidewalks you'll see that we routinely replace just sections of it. We may only replace a 4 foot, 5 foot block.
Mayor Webster said Ms. Manis, you were asking about a schedule on this. On Christmas Eve Mr. Osborn put out a memorandum that proposed some dates for the 1997 apron replacement and it indicates the inspections should be complete by mid March barring any significant weather delays, finalize criteria at the March 19 meeting, resolution of necessity on April 2, ordinance to proceed on June 4, award contract on June 4 and an ordinance levying assessments on September 3, 1997.
Ms. Manis asked when would we know how much it would be. Mayor Webster replied June 4.
Mr. Osborn said I think we are going to change that and move the bid date up a little so we'll know that amount sooner.
Mr. Galster said I just want to make the Administration aware that on the weekends we are getting landominiums for sale signs on City property right down at the curb line on all the corners. It seems it has been out every weekend for the past three or four weekends. I want to know what I can do to try to halt that.
Mayor Webster said we'll make sure that gets taken care of. There is a limitation on the number of signs too and I'm sure they are in violation on the numbers as well as where they are placing them.
Mr. Danbury said I spoke with a resident and he asked me if there is anything we have that is a little more than the neighborhood watch program where an adult can get involved; something where the Police Department can come in and say these are the signs you look for, this is a safe house, if this happens these are the procedures that you do, who you call, etc. He wants to see if there is anything we can do with the community.
Mr. Osborn replied right now we do not have a program like that. The closest thing we would have is the DARE program. Obviously, if that person is interested we could certainly try to give him some information along those lines. I'm not sure whether we would want to pursue it but I know there are other jurisdictions that have a civilian academy where they bring interested residents in and give them more detailed training and exposure to police procedures just so that there is a better awareness in the community as to the role and responsibility of the Police Department. We've never discussed doing that but it would probably be a step beyond the DARE program.
Ms. Manis asked do you remember when we were growing up there were those signs you put in the windows? I'm sure the City doesn't want to get into that because how do you check out the people nowadays.
Mr. Danbury said the gentleman was looking at that and also the tell-tale signs of a drug dealer in the neighborhood. I know there are certain things a police officer would look for. He's interested in what happens. He would like to get a police scanner and know what the codes mean. There are a lot of people interested in the Fire Department. I think it is something to investigate and if there is a program out there, we'll throw it out there.
MEETINGS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
Mr. Galster said last Saturday night I went to the Roberts' residents on Greencastle for a going away party for J. T. Roberts who was recently signed by the New England Revolution of the Major League Soccer Franchise. There was also an article that came out in today's Tri-County Press. I just wanted to take a minute to congratulate J. T. on his accomplishments. J. T. was one of the first players I ever had as a coach, not that I'm trying to toot my own horn. I see he's third at NKU on their all-time scoring list. When he played for me I played him half the game at goalie. Congratulations to J. T. Roberts and his family.
Mr. Vanover said I just want to point out we have a young man in attendance tonight who is from Boy Scout Troop 164. He is working on one of his merit badges and I guess we can brag a little bit as we had the pleasure of spending this last weekend together on a Klondike camp-out. It was cold out and we qualified for the Polar Bear Club. I saw the young man in action and there are a lot of good guys in that group. It really speaks well for their leadership and membership.
Mr. Wilson reported District 1 will be having a meeting March 3 at 7:00 p.m. in these chambers.
Board of Zoning Appeals will meet March 18 at 7:00 p.m.
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
UPDATE ON LEGISLATION STILL IN DEVELOPMENT
Item 1 was dealt with tonight.
Item 2 still open.
Item 3 was done tonight.
Systems operations for traffic signals - we'll get something at our next meeting.
Item 9 - fireworks - had first reading tonight.
Items 10, 11 and 12 at next meeting.
Items 14 and 15 dealing with CDS for storm sewer improvements on West Kemper Road and traffic analysis.
RECAP OF LEGISLATIVE ITEMS REQUESTED FOR NEXT COUNCIL MEETING.
Mr. Danbury said Mr. Osborn, I heard you mention three items and they were covered in this packet right here.
Council adjourned at 8:52 p.m.
Edward F. Knox
Clerk of Council/Finance Director
Randy Danbury, President of Council