Council was called to order on June 18, 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.
Minutes of June 4 - Mrs. McNear said on page 5777, first paragraph, fifth line, first word is have. I believe it should be half. The minutes were approved with 7 affirmative votes.
COMMITTEE AND OFFICIAL REPORTS
RULES AND LAWS - no report
PUBLIC RELATIONS - no report
PUBLIC HEALTH, SAFETY & WELFARE - no report
PUBLIC WORKS - Mr. Vanover reported the work is underway, on schedule on the 1997 street program and should be completed in September. The driveway apron work is scheduled to begin this week and should be completed in August. All construction work at Northwest Business Center is completed and ready for Council's acceptance.
PUBLIC UTILITIES - no report
CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS - Mr. Wilson stated the Community Center HVAC replacement equipment is on order and the work will be performed in July and August. Carmen Creek improvements at Heritage Hills School plans are completed and the permit has been filed with the EPA. We hope to advertise bids in July. St. Rt. 747 CSX grade separation final environmental document has been submitted to ODOT for review. We anticipate this project to be approved by ODOT to begin the detail design work by mid 1997. The Community Center pool repair and improvements project is out for bid and due June 27. The bid summary and recommendation will be presented to Council July 2. Construction is scheduled from the end of August through November. Community Center field wiring replacement work is underway as weather and field conditions allow. Kemper Road traffic signals at McGillard and Lawnview - ODOT has sold the project and awarded the contract to Wagner Smith Company. Construction will take place this summer. West Kemper Road storm sewer preliminary plans are complete and will be reviewed with Springdale and Forest Park this month. Final plans are to be completed by the end of August. The Sharon Road resurfacing and bikeway field survey work is underway and design will follow as soon as the field work is complete. We plan on completing design in November. Bid and contract for construction work next February 1998 and have the project under construction from April through October 1998.
FINANCE COMMITTEE - Ms. Manis reported they will meet Wednesday, June 25 at 4:30 to review the 1998 tax budget.
PLANNING COMMISSION - Mr. Galster said they met June 10 and all members were present. Judith Muehlenhard of Pine Garden Landominium requested approval for screened in porch decks under development at Princewood Court. They wanted to do it on all sixteen units. We did approve the inner most facing units only to where the decks came into the development as opposed to protruding back closer to the property lines of the existing residences on Lawnview Avenue. We approved units 9, 10, 11 with a 7-0 vote. Rebecca Crow and Jason W. Paul requested the transfer of a variance to allow partial conversion of a garage at 478 Maple Circle Drive. This was tabled from our May meeting. They are the new owners of a piece of property that has had its two car garage converted into a one car garage with living space in the other half. That was granted in 1980, 1981 and 1982 through BZA. It came to Planning Commission for a permanent variance to allow the old owner to continue to use that with the Homeowners' Association's approval at that time with the understanding that she would take it out when she sold it. These are the new owners. They requested to keep it and we told them they couldn't unless their Homeowners' Board agreed to do so and at the meeting in May they said they couldn't. They must have been pretty persuasive because they did convince them to grandfather it in. We did approve it based on their Homeowners' Association approving it 7-0.
There was a concept discussion of a proposed new ShowCase Cinemas at 12064 Springfield Pike. It is a two phase project that involves constructing a new twenty screen cinema on the existing lot. It would be shifted a little differently. They would build ten cinemas first; then they would tear down the old cinema and then build the other ten cinemas. It would be a continuous project. It looked really nice and I think it will be a major asset to the community and it's a major improvement to that particular site. Concept discussion went well and we would expect to have them back in the near future. The next item was preliminary plan approval of a proposed hotel at 12037 Sheraton Lane. That was approved 7-0. This is the old Pizza Hut location. The applicant has been in several times over the past 4 or 5 months and has made numerous modifications to his original plan. It was three stories and now it's down to two stories. It meets all the covenants of the PUD in that area and it was approved and will be set for public hearing.
The proposed Target Store to be located at Century Boulevard and East Kemper Road was tabled 7-0. Calvary Pentecostal Church and School at 11970 Kenn Road was tabled 7-0.
BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS - Mrs. Boice reported they met last evening with six members in attendance. Brisben Development Inc. for Hunter's Glen Apartments requested a variance to allow a 192 square foot ground sign, 22 feet high and 14 feet from the I-275 right of way. This has been tabled at the previous meeting and was on the agenda last night. That sign is presently under a variance for both height and square footage. That variance was subsequently denied 5-1. Advanced Cellular, 11439 Princeton Road, requested a variance to allow a 150 square foot wall sign. That is over what is allowed there but in that particular development it does not look out of line. The panel is there and if you measure the whole panel you will be over. If you are blocking out the ends that need to be there for the print on it, it is certainly not out of line and that variance was granted with 5 votes and one abstention. One member had a conflict and did not participate in that discussion.
James Squires, 151 Ruskin Drive, requested a variance to allow a privacy fence 30 feet from the property line. The variance is requested from Section 153.038 to be set back properly. That variance was granted 6-0. Tri County Pontiac, 150 Northland Boulevard, requested a variance to allow a 250.5 square foot painted window sign. Unfortunately, there was no one in attendance at that meeting and it is our policy to table to allow for representation. This is a bit troublesome as it is a painted sign, not a permanent sign. Once we table no enforcement can take place for thirty days.
Bob Volarius, 740 Cloverdale Avenue, requested a variance to allow his front porch to project more than six feet into his front yard. That was granted 6-0. Mark Audretch, 562 Grandin Avenue, requested a variance to allow the partial conversion of his garage into living space. That variance was granted with 5 votes and 1 abstention. One member felt there was a conflict and needed to withdraw from that.
Vineyard Community Church, 1391 E. Crescentville Road, requested a 60 day extension of a variance granted to allow the placement of a temporary office trailer on their property. That was requested under Temporary Structures that may be permitted. It was granted 4-2.
BOARD OF HEALTH - Mr. Vanover stated they met last Thursday evening. We unrolled the new cholesterol checking machine. There was discussion as to how and where we would apply it.
CIVIL SERVICE COMMISSION - Mr. Coleman said they met Thursday, June 12. We made the official entries into the records of those letters of acknowledgment involving probationary and permanent appointments to the positions of patrol officer, fire officer and violations bureau clerk. We anticipate testing in late July for patrol officer position and we are waiting confirmation of the dates.
O-K-I - Mayor Webster stated they meet tomorrow. There has been no meeting since the last Council meeting. I do have a conflict and will be unable to attend.
MAYOR'S REPORT -
Proclamation - Recognizing the benefits of Parks and Recreation.
Whereas, parks and recreation activities enhance the physical health and mental well-being of individuals, workforces and communities, and
Whereas, participation in recreation programs builds self-esteem and provides positive and constructive alternatives to anti-social behavior, and
Whereas, parks and recreation opportunities and open space enhance the desirability of communities as locations for business, industry and residential housing, and,
Whereas, parks and recreation stimulates tourism, revenues, and the economic development of communities and,
Whereas, parks and recreation and open space are vital to the appearance and livability of communities, protect our air and water, balance the eco systems, and
Whereas, it is the right of everyone regardless of age, race, color, religion, gender, national origin or ability to participate in Parks and recreation programs and activities to enjoy parks and open space.
Therefore, I, Doyle H. Webster, Mayor of the City of Springdale, do hereby proclaim the month of July as "Parks and Recreation Month" in the City of Springdale and urge our citizens to join with citizens of other communities throughout this great state in recognizing that parks and recreation services are essential to the quality of life, not only in July during "Parks and Recreation Month" but throughout the year as well.
Mayor Webster presented the proclamation to Jim Burton and said we appreciate all the efforts. I'm sure it will get better after we go forward this evening. As Item 8b of the agenda, Mr. Burton and his staff and Mr. Phil Partridge from CDS will be presenting Vision 2000. I'm looking forward to sharing that with Council.
We just had one of our officers graduate from the Basic Police Academy and I would like to read you a letter I received from our Police Chief, Mr. Freland.
On Thursday evening, June 12, I attended the graduation of Officer Aubrey Goodwin from the Butler County Sheriff's Basic Training Academy. The ceremonies were held in the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 38 in Fairfield. Officer Goodwin received the award for academic excellence for graduating Class 97-035. Officer Goodwin obtained the highest score on the state certification exam by correctly answering 96 of 100 questions. After the ceremony I had the opportunity to speak to the academy commander and instructors. They all had very positive comments about Officer Goodwin. Officer Goodwin formally began his field training in uniform and on patrol on Sunday, June 8.
Mr. Coleman, we appreciate your commission's contribution. I think we have a winner here. Congratulations, Officer Goodwin.
I'm sure you've all seen the City's trucks parked in driveways throughout the City. We had 47 requests last month. We've already had 24 this month. Year to date we have had 131 people take advantage of the debris removal program. If someone has missed that, all you need to do is call the City Maintenance Department and they'll be more than happy to arrange the time and place to park a truck in your driveway so you can clean out the attic, garage, side yard, front yard, etc.
Our festival is coming up July 3 and 4 from 5 p.m. to midnight both evenings. The parade is at 6 p.m. on July 4 with fireworks around 9:45 p.m. Lots of fun, lots of food, rides for the kids, entertainment for the adults. We urge everyone to come out. Last year we had 10,000 to 15,000 for the fireworks and we expect just as big a crowd this year.
The landscaping awards will be presented on July 16. We'll start the judging on June 23 and that will last through July 6.
I would like to make the public aware that there is an Ohio Energy Credit Program for some of our disabled and senior citizens, especially for those with annual incomes of $9,000 or less. There is a program that you may qualify for and we have the applications here at City Hall at the front desk. It can mean up to 30% credit off your heating bill for the months of November through March.
As a follow up to Mr. Vanover's report we are going to show you the cholesterol testing screening. Mr. Vanover has volunteered to be tested.
CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR - Mr. Knox said he had received a letter from the Ohio Municipal Finance Officers' Association concerning a government agency known as the General Accounting Standards Board. They are issuing a draft recommendation for yet another financial statement that would be required of state and local governments. This has been reviewed by a CPA in the state, whose name is Pete Rose, and some of his conclusions were that the reporting model is based on a flow of economic resources which is inconsistent with the manner in which resources are raised and spent. As proposed, this report would provide no useful information for decision making, nor would it provide any information for citizens to evaluate how we raise and use resources. It would also provide no useful information beyond the statements already prepared and can, in fact, produce misleading operating results, and last but not least, the cost far outweighs any benefits that are derived from this. I propose to take a copy of the report and give it to each member of Council and I'd like to see if we could have a resolution at the next meeting about this if Council agrees. After reading it myself I passed it on to Mrs. Burton and she reviewed it and concurs that it looks like another federal mandate that nobody really needs.
ADMINISTRATOR'S REPORT - Mr. Parham said outside of having comments on a number of items that are on the agenda, I have no report.
ENGINEER'S REPORT - Mr. Shuler reported over the last few weeks we have been reevaluating the City traffic signals to determine which of those may be added to the list of signals that are on flash overnight. We started with a list of twelve that we felt were possible candidates. After looking at the signals in more detail, three of those were eliminated because of site distance problems. Those would be the intersections of St. Rt. 747 and Tri-County Parkway; West Kemper and Lawnview; and East Kemper and Kemper Commons. Two other signals we have not put on flash at this time that we had considered were St. Rt. 747 and Francis; and St. Rt. 4 and Glensprings. The reason is after discussing those with the Chief, he felt there was sufficient activity late at night that if we were going to put those on flash, he requested that they be put on flash only between the hours of 2 to 5 in the morning. We determined that if we were going to shorten it to that length, we'd rather not have them on flash. We thought that would be confusing to the motorists for such a short time. There are seven additional signals that we are going to put on flash overnight which should help for movement around town and not create any safety or liability problems.
COMMUNICATIONS - none
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
SCREENING FOR CHOLESTEROL - David Winfough, Health Commissioner
Mr. Winfough said we would like to offer this cholesterol checking system to both our employees and residents as a means to identify those at risk for heart disease and diabetes. I was informed about this system a few months ago by Donna Laake, the Health Commissioner of the City of Norwood, who was seriously considering getting it herself at the time. It's called the Cholestech LDX system and it's very compact and cost efficient. It costs about $11 per cassette per test which is the major expense. We can do a complete lipid profile including total cholesterol, HDL, LDL, triglycerides and glucose. The cost for the entire system including 50 cassettes was $2300. We also checked on its accuracy. Miami Valley Hospital near Dayton is using this system for its employee wellness program and they tested it themselves on 30 cardiac patients. They compared the results with their own laboratory results and it was within no worse than 10 points, most of the times within 4 points difference. The accuracy is excellent. We intend to begin offering the test to employees next Friday. We will be having monthly clinics the first Friday of each month from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. We had 43 of the full-time employees sign up right away. I think we will have great response to this and will have to buy more cassettes right away. After we begin the program we intend to offer it to the citizens of the community. Dru Hester is our part-time nurse. She has been with us for four months and has been doing an excellent job. Her medical technology background is a definite asset.
The machine consists of the printer for the labels, lancettes to take the blood from the finger and micro-pipettes to draw a tiny bit of blood. It comes with its own optics check. We can check each time we use it to assure there is nothing wrong before we take the test.
Ms. Hester showed the test kit. The reagents are contained at the top where the black strip is. There is a color change with the chemical reaction. A capillary with a plunger is the blood collection system. The sharp point on the lancette retracts back in after you puncture the patient. Ms. Hester did a cholesterol check on Tom Vanover.
Ms. Hester explained how she did the test. This instrument does not have any parts we have to replace. It doesn't have any parts that we would have to troubleshoot ourselves by taking it apart. If we run into any problems, if we need new optics, we can call the company and they will send us another set. If the control levels are bad, we call the company and they send us a new set of control levels. If after those two options we still can't get it to run, we send it back and they send us a whole new system.
Mr. Winfough said the salesperson lives in Forest Park four minutes from this building. Dr. Webb, our medical director, okayed our policy and procedure manual which Ms. Hester wrote this last week. Liability-wise we have a release form that the patient signs that Ken Schneider drew up for us.
Mayor Webster said we are offering this to our employees cost-free. It's a fringe benefit of working for the City of Springdale. Once we're ready to take the program city-wide it's the Board of Health's recommendation that we only charge for the material - $10 for the cassette. The City has already purchased the equipment and we don't see us adding staff. We do recommend at least at the outset that we recover the cost of materials and run a pilot program for 3-6 months and see what kind of response we get. Maybe we would want to waive or lower the fee.
Mr. Winfough said there are a variety of cassettes. We can just do total cholesterol or we can do HDL/LDL or triglycerides or glucose. The more you add to it the more expensive the cassette is. The total lipid profile is $10.95 and that is the most expensive.
Ms. Hester said Dr. Webb suggested that doing a partial profile would not be a medical benefit for screening. Just doing a cholesterol would not benefit him on how to medically evaluate the patient.
Mr. Winfough stated we notify the physician of anybody whose results show he/she may be at risk.
Mr. Galster said I was probably in 7th or 8th grade when Princeton would have the lipid center. The building is still there and they would do blood tests. They took three test tubes at least 6 inches long to do the same thing. This is pretty amazing to me.
Mr. Winfough said my own physician five years ago had a machine as big as this podium.
Mrs. McNear said normally when you would have this battery of tests at your doctor's office, it would require 12 hours fasting. Is that a requirement for this test as well.
Mr. Winfough replied primarily for the triglycerides and glucose. It's not that important with the cholesterol.
Mr. Parham said Dru, you indicated one of the tapes will last for a year. Is there a limited number of tests you can run on one of those cassettes?
Ms. Hester replied the optics test tests the wave length that passes through the cassette. Depending on the color density for a particular test, that test will give you a number. This optics check is good for a year. The test cassettes themselves have varying shelf lives. This one is good until September 1997. Others we have are good until October 1997. In our case, when we order cassettes we would ask for the longest shelf life possible since we are not sure at this point how long we would have to keep them refrigerated.
Mr. Danbury said I want to thank both of you for showing up. I think it's just another one of the nice benefits we offer our residents. If people would realize all the things your department provides for them they would be shocked. You do a good job.
Mr. Vanover said that battery of tests from a lab excluding the glucose would probably set you back $45 to $65. We can offer this for about a quarter of the cost.
Mr. Winfough said whether you decide to charge or not I think it will be real popular with the residents.
PRESENTATION FROM PARKS AND RECREATION
Mr. Jim Burton said we are honored to come before you this evening and make this presentation, possibly a very historic one. In 1969 or 1970 the same things were talked about so we are very excited about that. In Mr. Knox's opening prayer he talked about serving the community with imagination and courage and wisdom. We are certainly here tonight with imagination and courage. I guess when we're through you'll be able to dictate how much wisdom we have added to this procedure. I did place in your mail bins yesterday this packet. After my opening remarks Mr. Karle will be talking about the equipped exercise room and the game room. Ms. Casselman will be talking about the locker rooms, offices and lobby. Mr. Thompson will address the issues of the gymnasium and Mr. Partridge will address the overall building concept and dollars. I would hope you have some questions and would encourage you to jot them down so we can discuss them when we're finished. I want to thank assistant directors Greg Karle, Gary Thompson and Sharon Casselman; and Phil Partridge of CDS Associates for their work on this project. It has been time consuming, very interesting, thought provoking and each of them has contributed a lot. What you will hear and see is what the staff feels we require to stay current with the trends and leisure services fields and the needs of our patrons. They realize the magnitude of what they bring before you this evening is very lofty. They realize that that has to meld into other issues that the City is going to have to address over the next four or five years. They come to you very aware of that. It would be easy for them to stand pat. Everyone has been there quite a while. I think that speaks to their dedication and professionalism that they are not satisfied to do that. The things they are seeking are things they really think they can do better jobs with and serve the people of the community.
We need to expand and renovate our current facility. We have a plan to show you to renovate 6,000 of the 22,000 square feet we have and add an additional 16,000 square feet. The concept plan and floor plan you have in your packet are the areas we will be expanding. We have put together a proposal to start this project in the year 2000 and finish approximately 14 months later. That price tag, to the best of our abilities, would be 4 to 4 1/2 million dollars.
Mr. Burton showed slides of what other communities have done. Each one did what they did based on the needs of their community. I think you can pick three key areas out of this document that indicate what we are trying to do. Evendale's facility was built in 1960; Sharonville in 1969; Blue Ash in 1979 and our facility in 1972. Evendale's community center was enlarged in 1991 and Sharonville's is currently under renovation. That is thirty years and 28 years out into their initial building. The staffs of those two facilities will tell you that that was too long. They could no longer meet the needs of their patrons and the building was starting to eat them up with maintenance costs. Evendale's initial square footage and their addition are totaling 50,000 square feet. Sharonville is in the 50,000 to 51,000 square feet. Blue Ash is 60,000 square feet. You'll notice we currently have 22,500 square feet and are looking at an additional 16,000 square feet. If you look at the dollar amounts that have been and are being spent I think you will see that what we propose certainly falls within the range of the norm.
I think it's fair to point out as we go along that this is a bigger version but we have addressed the needs as we have gone through the years and just this evening Mr. Wilson touched on HVAC, field wiring, pool. Certainly we've been able to show those needs and have those addressed over the years. Obviously this is a bigger version of it but it needs to be done. If you look at the $500,000 Mr. Wilson spoke of earlier, a patron will probably be able to walk in and see approximately $200,000 of those. That would be in the pool amenities. That tells you that time and the infrastructure need those additional improvements.
There was an expansion plan. In 1996 when we put together the five year budget we had proposed an expansion and had plugged in roughly $2.1 million. At that time the staff suggested to me that we were not addressing all the needs. The initial expansion plan with the original building has a gymnasium, weight room and additional meeting rooms. The expansion we proposed a few years ago included an additional gymnasium with some offices in-between. The staff said look at the pool, pool locker rooms, equipped exercise area, game room. This is one of the reasons we put together a more detailed package. If you look at the amenities and things we are doing with the pool this year, it does address all the factors and age groups that come to the pool. I think as you go through this you'll see that we tried to do the same thing. Where does our justification come from? We host twice the amount of special events that we did six years ago. Approximately 175,000 people utilize the facility during the course of a year. Last year we had 1054 memberships up 4% from the year before. As of yesterday we have 1112 memberships and they are coming daily as the pool weather improves. I would hope that memberships would increase due to the enhancements we plan in the pool this fall. Youth basketball is up 60% over the last five years. Youth volleyball is up 29% over the same time frame. That's having the least amount of gym time for winter sports. Boys varsity volleyball is just taking off in all the high schools in the area so we would want to promote that sport rather than strangle it but we're just not able to with the gym time we have. Our meeting rooms are used an average of 700 times a year. We would certainly be able to be more flexible with an additional meeting room and an additional gymnasium. Right now we get a lot of requests for meetings for 75-125 people which is a little too big for the three rooms and too small for the gymnasium. We have had requests for Blue and Gold scout banquets, retirement dinners, etc. and we just don't have a venue for that middle of the road activity. We can take care of the soccer party and the wedding reception but we're really missing being able to take care of that particular venue.
I think I would be remiss if I didn't refer to the recent survey completed. Of those who responded 71% of them felt some sort of expansion needed to take place at the community center. A few weeks ago you took part in a visioning process and I read with interest some of your comments that green space and recreation were paramount in your minds as well as a sense of community. Not to pat ourselves on the back but I think we would be hard pressed to maintain a sense of community if it wasn't for the community center. We are taking some measures to get us by over the next few years. We are working with GEEAA. Mr. Thompson has secured time in the elementary schools for this coming winter so we can have more practice times and hopefully open up the facility a little bit. I don't think this is the way we want to go long term. I think the community center should remain the hub where people come together. I think you'll see that specifically pointed out in Ms. Casselman's address and some of the things we want to do with the lobby. I have a real fear that if we do this over a long period of time we're going to cater to the 5-12 year old set and we're going to let the vine die at both ends. As these people become young adults we're not going to have things for them to do. We need to be very creative with the 5 and under set as well.
There are several ways you can look at this. We can look at it as when we were here a few weeks ago and Mr. Danbury indicated the pool issues. Whether we like it or not it is a cost of doing business. We are in competition with other facilities. Based on what you hear and see this evening I'm confident you will agree with our assessments or hope you will so we can look at it as a pay me now or pay me later. It's certainly going to be more expensive 7-10 years down the road.
I think a better way to look at it is as an investment in the community. If you want to know what kind of return that investment is going to pay I would suggest we look around this room. Mr. Knox uses the facilities, Mr. Wilson's children. Mrs. Boice's children have, Mrs. McNear. Mr. Danbury indicated he was the first person in the pool. Mr. Galster, Ms. Manis and Mr. Vanover. Mr. and Mrs. Webster were coaching when I came to the city 21 years ago, people in the audience. That's a more positive way to look at as an investment in the next 25 years in the community.
Mr. Karle said I've been asked to address you on the game room and the exercise facility. The game room was part of the community center when it was built in 1972. It's always been popular, particularly with young adults and children. Through the years we just had a ping pong table, pool table, foosball table. There really wasn't a lot in the game room but it still was heavily used. It could be reserved. Equipment could be checked out. That worked fine for a number of years but this fall we looked at a new policy and decided to change. We wanted to eliminate room reservations to provide a more open atmosphere. The equipment stays in the room. People come and go as they please. It eliminates congestion in the lobby. We have a small lobby now and by diverting people to the open area of the game room it allows the secretary to conduct business and for people to more easily move through the building. It also gets more people into this room to use it. We've seen a lot heavier use. The increased number of people in the room has helped us deter vandalism and misbehavior. When we made these changes it became obvious there was a need for more game activities in the room. To try to address that we contracted with a vendor of arcade equipment and have placed four video arcade games in the room. They have been enjoyed by the patrons and the City receives 40% of the revenue from the machines. The proposed expanded game room includes a ping pong table and small couch. We have the arcade games. The expanded facility would double in size to 2400 square feet extending out to the sidewalk in front of the building. A couple of the features we would like to see is increased visibility, abundance of windows to aid us in supervision of the room and hopefully to increase the use of the area. I look at this as a prominent meeting place particularly for young adults and kids at the community center. We do have a teen group which I work closely with. We provide a lot of organized fun activities but they also like meeting informally with their friends. In the recent survey one of the primary concerns of the citizens was increased activities in the teenage group. I think this would address their needs. Although it wouldn't be for their exclusive use I think it would provide a lot of wholesome recreation for them. I can see us adding things like air hockey, a foosball table, additional arcade games and a seating area.
The equipped exercise facility has been a huge success. Our request for an increase in that facility is out of that success. Currently we have a 750 square foot exercise room which was constructed in 1991 along with the racquetball courts. In this time we have had over 60,000 visits to this feature of the community center. Most evenings and early mornings you will find this room used to its full potential. Through the years we've added additional equipment. We've added a stairclimber and treadmill. Those items were added at the request of our patrons. You'll find them in constant use. We've replaced both of the stationary bikes because they wore out from use. The room is used to the maximum potential. We really couldn't add any additional equipment comfortably within that room. We do hear complaints of patrons not being able to get on the cardiovascular equipment. You need to be on that equipment for 12-15 minutes for a workout. It's not uncommon to find yourself waiting 45 minutes to use the treadmill. Someone comes in with good intentions to start an exercise program and then they walk away frustrated because they can't get on the equipment. When considering expanding the facility we felt it needed to be in a prominent location. The current facility is located down a card key corridor. There aren't any windows and it's a location you wouldn't go to unless you were going to play racquetball or specifically going to the fitness room. In the new facility we would like to see a lot of open space, windows, areas you could look in and out of. It would be adjacent to the front desk in the new facility. Everybody coming in would walk past the fitness room and be able to observe people exercising. The staff would be close by to assist anyone who had difficulty and also to monitor for safety and other problems. The proposed addition would be approximately 1800 square feet so we would have ample room for additional cardiovascular equipment and also some additional weight training equipment as well.
I would like to conclude the presentation by showing some slides. Our facility wouldn't be as large as the Blue Ash facility but we're trying to gain the concept of open windows, natural lighting. They do have an abundance of cardiovascular equipment. This slide is our room as it exists now. We are using all the floor space we have. We tried to create the illusion of size and openness with mirrors but we're pretty well there. A large segment of the population who uses this room are senior citizens. When we developed this room I didn't realize that would happen. I think it's great. We also serve competitive runners and athletes.
Ms. Casselman said my first slide is the floor plan. I will be addressing the offices, the front desk and administrative assistant's area and the lobby. We are suggesting pool locker rooms and the family pool locker. In 1972 when the building first opened we had a full time staff of four. We had one recreation director, one assistant director and two park maintenance workers. Five months after that it was realized that a second assistant recreation director was needed. The sports programs consisted of soccer, basketball, baseball and softball. All of those teams were organized by volunteer residents. Special events and interest activities included yoga, ceramics, tiny tot gym and karate. In 1973 a full time secretary was hired and shared the 11' x 18' office space with the two assistant directors. Six years later it became clear that the shared office space was not adequate for three full time staff members. The existing secretary's office as you see it now is a result of that knowledge. Since the opening of the building the department has doubled its full time staff to ten. We have one director, three assistant directors, an administrative assistant, a custodian and four park maintenance workers. The responsibilities and workload of the staff has obviously increased. Currently all sports programs are organized by the staff. Special events and activities have more than tripled and memberships have increased by over 61%. The office space that was determined inadequate in 1979 is again being shared by three full time staff members; now it's three assistant recreation directors. The secretary's office as it is now doesn't provide much work space for patrons to fill out room rental forms, write checks, complete membership applications or sport sign up forms. Patrons have to actually enter the office to have their membership ID card pictures taken. The counters that surround this office are about 1 1/2 to 2 feet wide. Most of those counters are taken up with office equipment. The machine in the right hand corner is for taking membership pictures. Whoever is working in that office has to climb up onto that counter space, lean back, try to focus and take the picture of the patron. When entering the building a lot of patrons are confused as to where to go. We believe that Debbie and our part time secretaries are the front line people. Anybody who enters that building needs to know where he/she can get immediate help. As it is now that is not real clear. In the Blue Ash building there is no access to the administrative assistant or secretary's office other than by key entry or push button. All transactions take place without the individual coming into the office. That is the idea we are trying to achieve with redesigning our offices. The actual square footage of the current office space for the director, three assistants, administrative assistant and the part time secretaries is 550 square feet. That also includes a storage closet that is located in our office. The general rule of thumb for office and work space is 100 square feet per person. The assistant directors' office is 11' x 18' - 198 square feet. Office equipment consumes all but 5' x 3' for individual work space. The administrative assistant's office is a 10' x 10' office but the actual work space is about 4 square feet. The counter that goes around the entire office is 1 1/2 to 2 feet wide but most of it is taken up by office equipment. The expansion we propose will increase office space by 450 square feet for a total of 1,000 square feet. With the new offices and front desk area, the increase in efficiency and productivity of the entire staff would be inevitable.
The nature of our business and one of the goals we try to meet is to provide the residents with a gathering place, somewhere where they can feel a sense of belonging, a sense of togetherness and a true sense of community. With a larger lobby we believe we could better accomplish this goal. As it is now, when you enter the lobby you are pretty much funneled down to the meeting rooms, into the gymnasium or to the racquetball and exercise area. By redesigning the lobby parents can come in, comfortably sit on couches or chairs, wait for their children's activity to end. They could read a magazine or socialize with neighbors and friends and it would also provide a rest area for those finishing a workout, practice or racquetball match. Many people would enjoy the availability of an area to just sit and relax. As it is now there is no place to do that. With our proposal the lobby would increase by 800 square feet. We would remove what is currently Debbie's office and combine that with the additional footage that would be gained by redesigning the entrance. The total lobby space would then increase to 1400 square feet.
The current locker rooms were designed 25 years ago to accommodate the swimming pool. Over the years they have deteriorated to the point where we cannot continue to do patchwork. The flooring in the women's shower room has deteriorated pretty badly. We've had to do some tile work in the men's room and the tile really doesn't match. Last year we had to bring in a professional sand blaster in the men's locker room because those walls just wouldn't take any more paint. Since the addition of the exercise area and racquetball courts these locker rooms are now serving a dual purpose. Adults who have finished a racquetball match or workout and would like to shower and change afterwards are doing so in locker rooms that do not have heat or air conditioning. In the summer time the doors leading from the locker rooms to the building are kept locked for monitoring purposes. All pool patrons are required to enter and exit through the pool gate. When an individual wishes to use the locker rooms he/she has to request a key from the secretary to get into the area. When they are finished we ask that they relock those doors. When it doesn't get done that creates another set of problems. Ninety-five percent of the pool patrons come to the pool already dressed in bathing suits. Thus, these locker rooms are not being used by pool patrons to change clothes. The majority of the pool patrons are using these facilities for the restroom facilities. The showers are typically used by children for horseplay during adult breaks. The proposed plan would include refurbishing these locker rooms and adding heat and air conditioning. These locker rooms would become more adult oriented and serve the members using the indoor facilities. In the women's outdoor locker room there would be two showers, two toilets, two wash basins, two changing areas and a small number of lockers. In the men's locker room we would include two wash basins, one urinal, two toilets, two showers, two changing areas and a small number of lockers. These new pool locker rooms would be accessible from the pool side only. They would be utilized strictly in the summer months. We are proposing a family locker on the pool side. This will be created by taking a section in the women's shower area. It will be a small area, enough to accommodate a father with a young daughter or a mother with a young son, somewhere where the two of them can go and use the facilities. It would also provide an area for a handicapped individual to go in private with his/her caregiver and use the facility. With this proposal the locker room would increase by 1,000 square feet bringing the total square footage of the locker rooms to 3,000 square feet.
In closing I'd like to revisit the Council meeting where Jim and I came before you with the plans for the pool project. Mr. Danbury made the very accurate statement that like it or not, we are in competition with these other places. It is our hope that you will continue to support our ability to remain competitive within our business.
Mr. Thompson said my part will be to show you why we need an additional gymnasium. An additional gym has been a topic of conversation at the community center for several years. Most of you here sitting on Council have or have had children who have participated in our winter sports programs of basketball or volleyball and are aware of the programming that goes with scheduling volleyball and basketball practices and games. These two activities alone consume most of the weekday evenings and the entire days on the weekend for practices or games. To make a similar comparison could you imagine us trying to schedule all our baseball and softball games and practices on one field. That is what we do for our winter sports. We schedules all those practices and games on one basketball court.
Each of you will find a complete report attached to your Vision 2000 information. I encourage you to read the information enclosed and would be happy to answer any questions you might have regarding our program or scheduling the gymnasium. It's been a long standing concern for patrons who regularly use the gymnasium for basketball about limited open gym time during the period from late October to mid March. This timeframe is always occupied by youth basketball, volleyball practices and games. Open gym time for the general public is very minimal. I can remember Mr. Wilson's sons coming in several times this past winter and finding they just couldn't come in and shoot around due to basketball practices or games going on in the gym. As Mr. Burton said, the last five years we have seen a 60% increase in youth basketball teams. The largest increase occurred last year as a result of allowing third graders to play in a league. Allowing them to play was the result of coaches complaining that our Springdale girls were far behind the other communities who start their boys and girls at the second and third grade level. This past season we had one girls' team and three boys' teams at the third grade level. I can foresee this trend happening every year thus compounding our gym time problems. To provide some temporary relief for the anticipated increase and needed gym practice times for the 1997-1998 winter season we have combined our men's Thursday night basketball and women's Wednesday night volleyball into GEEAA with their respective leagues. In addition, I've made arrangements with Springdale Elementary School to allow us to practice two hours per week at each school for a total of four more additional hours of practice time. Using the school gyms for practice is something we did many years ago and I would think that everyone here would agree that this is something we only need to do temporarily. We hope our programs will continue to grow and the facilities need to grow with them. Evendale, Blue Ash and Sharonville have all seen the need for expansion and have taken to task what we at Springdale need to move forward on in the immediate near future. Our facilities are becoming outdated and overcrowded for the amount of patrons who now use the facilities and the workload we currently handle. I think we all realize that being a community center we cannot restrict our programs to strictly youth and adult team sports. We need to offer alternate forms of recreational activities for the general public. Not everyone is interested or capable of participating in a team sport. Jazzercise is one of the activities we offer here. An additional gym would provide flexibility and continue to provide this program and other programs we have not been able to offer due to a lack of gym space. I'm sure you are well aware that we have purchased and put into place an indoor batting cage. This cage currently occupies the far half of our gymnasium. Due to the support structure of the cage, once the support wires for the netting is in place, we do not want to take the cage down until the end of June at which time baseball and softball seasons for our youth are complete. At present we are unable to erect a batting cage until the volleyball and basketball seasons are completed. Both of these seasons are usually finished by mid March. If we had an additional gym we could put the cage up in February when the teams could get more use during inclimate weather. In March I think they would prefer to get out on the fields as soon as weather permits and use the cage on rainy or cold days.
Like Mr. Burton said, we have had numerous requests for the various Springdale organizations such as the Boy Scout and Girl Scout troops to hold a few of their yearly functions in our gym. Due to heavy gym scheduling we have been unable to accommodate these types of requests. With an additional gym we would have the flexibility to host these events. One last point I would like to bring up is that our summer outdoor concert series has begun. They are on Wednesday evenings. With threatening weather conditions and these being held outdoors we have to make the decision to have it indoors or outdoors and sometimes that has to be made at the last minute. The problem is when we have to move that indoors at the last minute, the gym is already committed. We have Jazzercise in there every Monday and Wednesday evenings. We also have the batting cage up with the possibility of someone having that scheduled after Jazzercise is done in there. An additional gym would give us additional flexibility and not make the patrons upset that the band has to come in and set up in a corner while Jazzercise is going on.
In summary, even though you might say an additional gym is needed only six months a year, that's when we need it the most. Right now we are at a saturation point for gym usage from October to April and if we are to continue to grow in programming the facility needs to grow with the demand.
Mr. Burton said on that one night the facility was potentially being used for four different activities: open gym earlier, batting cage up, Jazzercise and we did get prepared for the concert but we didn't have to have it inside.
Mr. Phil Partridge of CDS said I want to summarize about the building. As Mr. Thompson was just talking about the gymnasium, we're proposing that the new gymnasium would be behind the existing one and in-between we would have a gallery for viewing into both gymnasiums and at the west end of the gallery we would have a lot of glass. The gallery would allow you to see into the building from Lawnview and also give an additional feeling of openness. We would possibly have skylights. The club rooms would be extended out north. Surprisingly there is a lot of space there to add both the gallery and the gymnasium and still have 80 or 90 feet of greenspace which includes the service drive to the extreme north. Right now other than the entrance and the window in the game room, the rest of the entrance as you approach the building you really don't know what's happening on interior activities. We are hoping to change that. We want to plan the proposed expansion with the existing building. That's why you see a lot of the materials we currently have. We're showing the gray block. Right now you have sloped sills going back to recessed windows. We would want to do those kinds of motifs and also pick up a contrast between sloped roofs and the flat roofs we have right now on the community center. As we're planning this expansion on the front we want it to blend with the current building. Because we're adding to a couple of different locations, the back of the gym, front entrance area, there would have to be some phasing done. For instance, when we were doing work on the front we would have to work out a temporary entrance. We would do the expansion work and still operate. We didn't feel a need to add parking and the reason we didn't is that right now the greatest use of parking is during the summer festival time and baseball. We see the additional activities being accommodated with the current parking. The way we've set up the plans you may wonder why the club room at the bottom section doesn't extend any farther out and why is the gym configured as it is. We wanted to comply with the City's zoning setbacks and also we have accounted for sprinklering in the entire building. In 1991 when we added the racquetball and exercise room we were able to do some firewalls and things this way to avoid the major cost of sprinklering.
Mr. Burton asked us to look at the overall cost, not only hard cost but also soil testing, professional design fees, the whole package. We saw for 1998 construction to be at $4.1 million and construction in 2000 at $4,450,000.
Mr. Burton said that concludes our presentation. In April 1996 we put together the 1997 annual budget and five year report. We had a figure of $2.1. It seemed like a long time away but it no longer seems that way. We know there's a lot of information to digest but there's a place to start and hopefully we've done that this evening.
Mayor Webster said I'd like to take this opportunity to thank the Parks and Recreation Commission for their contribution. I think they served as a sounding board for Jim and his staff at times. We had Tony Potts and Carmen Daniels with us this evening. Our chairman, Gene Burt, would have been here but he's out of town on vacation. I think one thing that drew my attention right away was the cost per square foot. Mr. Partridge, could you give them the Reader's Digest version of why the cost per square foot is considerably higher than what you are going to see in material than what Sharonville and Blue Ash spent.
Mr. Partridge stated the cost per square foot is fairly high. One of the things is that we are going to be adding in several different areas. When you add not all in one section it drives the cost per square foot up as opposed to if we were adding all in one section. The phasing is also going to make the cost per square foot higher because the contractor knows he's going to have to make sure that the noise and dust is dealt with so that the community center can continue to operate. If it were just a case of adding on in the back and taking down a wall in-between that would be less expensive.
Mr. Danbury said the dollar amount was quoted at $4.5 million. Is that in today's dollars?
Mr. Partridge replied that is in the year 2000. The $4.1 is for construction in 1998.
Mr. Danbury asked if that would not include any additional money we would need for exercise equipment?
Mr. Partridge replied no, it does not include additional exercise equipment. It does include the gym, bleachers, scoreboards and all fixed equipment for the gymnasium.
Mr. Danbury said it doesn't appear we are going to be adding any more heads. Mr. Burton, do you feel with a structure this size we can handle it with your staff as it is?
Mr. Burton replied first of all, you talked about equipment. We've talked about that in various meetings and we felt if this project were to be given the green light, that we could pick up any additional equipment through our annual capital project. No, we don't need any more heads to operate this facility. We feel the building is designed to accommodate the patrons and staff and security. If you have been into our facility recently, we do have a camera system on board now. It has six zones on it and we have the capability of adding ten more zones to that. When Ms. Casselman was talking about the staff earlier, we last added to the park maintenance staff in 1978 or 1979. We had three full time people at that time. Tom Meeks, who is current crew leader, was a general service person. We have not added to that staff since then. The Mayor has graciously allowed us to pick up some additional summer hires. We're requiring some additional secretarial hours during the day and we need manpower now. Hopefully, we will be addressing that this fall. Will this building require extra people in there? No, we don't feel it will at all.
Mr. Danbury said after the proposed expansion I see that the exercise equipment room would be 1800 square feet and the game room would be 2400 square feet. I'm thinking that in the future that may flip flop. I think maybe in the future we may need more exercise room and we're landlocked the way it is set up right now. Could these two be switched over with little or no commotion.
Mr. Partridge said we wanted to keep the exercise equipment where it was because we really didn't want to have the game room right next to the office. We wanted the office to be able to observe what was happening in the game room with the windows we have but we saw that activity as something we didn't want to have right next to us. As I was working with the staff I heard them say they want to be able to observe what's happening but there are certain times that they need to get work done and they need to be able to shut doors and not have people just stop by and interrupt.
Mr. Burton said structurally there is no reason why we couldn't do that. Mr. Partridge said I don't see it as a factor for the equipped exercise area to be oddly shaped.
Mr. Burton said it can be done. We did have that discussion. Blue Ash's facility is 3000 square feet and Sharonville is 2200. If this was to come to fruition and we started talking about it, that could be done.
Mr. Danbury said the reason I am asking that and my next question is that the City couldn't expand the old municipal building. We were told at the time that we could but we couldn't. I'm looking at possible expansion 20-25 years down the road. If there were a need, could we put a running track between the two gymnasiums that would interconnect them.
Mr. Burton said we looked at that. No, it is not possible. In the current gymnasium the HVAC is in the southeast corner. Blue Ash expanded, talked about it and didn't do it. Sharonville has done it. Blue Ash really wishes they had. Once that track is put in place it doesn't go away. It doesn't perpetuate cost. Equipment does. We looked at it real hard but couldn't sneak it in there.
Mr. Partridge said we only have 20 feet clear and we need to have 23 feet clear to have a running track. We also decided that to do it just over the proposed gym was going to be too short of a distance.
Mr. Danbury said Mr. Burton, you made the comment a few times that Sharonville is doing it and Blue Ash is doing it. I hope people don't get the impression that we have to do it just because they are. I think any of us who have been up there know we have to do something. It needs to be updated.
Mr. Burton said in talking with my cohorts over there, they saw the same needs we are seeing now. They worked very long and hard to see their projects come to fruition. I think if you go to each of those facilities we have, as the Mayor and Recreation Commission has, they have done things to accommodate their citizens, not to one-up the next community.
Mr. Vanover said on page 2 it says the cost to add the new emergency generator system is not included. Do we have a ballpark on what that will be?
Mr. Partridge said there really wasn't a need to have an emergency generator cover the new gym as the generator covers the front of the building and the Red Cross could be accommodated in the front part of the building. Mr. Burton said we don't plan on updating that at all. As Mr. Partridge said, the Red Cross is basically 24 hour in and out and we could accommodate that in the current gymnasium and club rooms that we have. That unit will run that facility up to three days.
Mr. Vanover said I know the focus is basically on the building itself but what else are we looking at in the future?
Mr. Burton replied the only other major capital venture I see in the next two years is to relamp the two fields.
Mr. Vanover asked if there are any plans to improve or upgrade drainage situations? What about redressing the fields?
Mr. Burton responded those are in-house things. With the tremendous amount of wind play we get down redressing the fields is an annual process.
Ms. Manis asked is the ceiling in the new gym proposed to be higher or can it be?
Mr. Partridge replied it will be 23 feet instead of 20 feet. Mr. Burton said we were going to let you bring baskets in from a different direction.
Ms. Manis said I use the pool and locker room a lot. I guess you get used to but looking at those slides you don't realize how bad it is until you see that shower pole standing there. I know you all need offices but I like being able to interrupt. I hope we don't lose the openness that is there. I think the game room is a good idea. I like what you are doing now with leaving the stuff in there. I think that's a big improvement. We talked about it in terms of teens and young adults but I can see getting a TV in there and there's a ballgame on even the adults go in there and watch. After we played volleyball we used to come out and sit on the floor and talk to people. I think redoing the lobby with chairs is a wonderful idea. And I like being able to bring the adult sports we kicked out of the Rec Center to GE back. You got to see a lot of people. I think being at GE a lot of teams will drop out and you won't get to see them. Do we increase storage space, do we need more storage space?
Mr. Partridge pointed out storage areas on the slides.
Ms. Manis said if we are going to spend $4-$5 million, is there anything we can do now to make it ready for the next thing that would be cheaper in the long run.
Mr. Partridge said when we started this out we had that same discussion in 1990. Do you build a storage room that has all the dimensions of a racquetball court, length, height, width, so that in the future it does become a racquetball court? Mr. Burton said no, two racquetball courts would be enough. I see what you are saying about doing some things now so that renovation in the future will be easier.
Ms. Manis said I'd like to see a room for the batting cage instead of using gym space.
Mr. Danbury said that's the same concept we did with this building here. This building originally did not have a basement. It does now.
Mr. Burton said we're certainly landlocked here. We have a lot of time between now and construction time to pick brains. Rec Commission was very helpful. It is for the community, not the staff, so I think the more brains we pick the better off we'll be.
Ms. Manis asked does your staff do all the grass cutting and maintenance of the parks?
Mr. Burton replied yes. We share duties around this building with Mr. Sears and his staff. He does a beautiful job on the shrubs and flowering. We cut the grass.
Mayor Webster said we have 6 summertime helpers also.
Mr. Galster said I agree the community center is in need of expansion but I don't think we've done anything that is an overkill. I look at every area we are looking at expanding. I look at the gym and right now we're using the schools. That doesn't make a lot of sense to me. We need to be looking ahead and making sure we can alleviate that situation. The locker rooms, no heat and air-conditioning for weight room, racquetball, for any of that. That's going back a number of years as far as it being dated. The exercise equipment facility. What's the use of getting your blood pressure up if you can't continue on your program. In particular to me is the game area. We spend a lot of time worry about our Police Department and staffing to deal with teens. I think it's as important, if not more important, to get these kids involved in activities to keep them out of trouble in the first place. I think if you create an environment that is inviting to them, it's a lot easier to deal with a mass group of people at the community center than a mass of people spread out through the community. I think that's the key. I think you have done an excellent job of addressing the needs that this community has now and in the foreseeable future.
Mr. Burton said we appreciate that and I don't think it's a mystery to people up here. We have noticed a migration to some of our younger families away from the City to the north. I don't know if running out of recreational facilities may have a part in that but if we can do something to hold them here. We have a very captive audience from 5 to 12 but when they come 18, 21, 22, hopefully there will be something to make them gravitate back here. I think if you look at a lot of facilities now in the leisure services field it's a cradle to the grave type thing, toddler programs to senior programs. We really are pleased with their participation in the equipped exercise area. Hopefully we've done something here for everybody.
Mr. Danbury said it isn't overkill. As Mr. Burton said it is a community center. When you look at this project as it is, we can try to accommodate as many people with so many diverse types of activity. It's not just a basketball court. You can have Jazzercise, racquetball, weightlifting and volleyball the same night.
Mr. Galster said if we look at this as strictly a sports complex that's one thing. Being a community center it's the center of the community. It's the hub of activity, not just a sports complex. I don't know what happens next, how we go about making a decision, if this is something we are looking at spending 1998 dollars on, 2000 dollars on?
Mr. Danbury asked what are you looking for tonight? Is this just a presentation?
Mayor Webster said I think we wanted to bring Council up to speed as to where we stood in this process. I think the next step would probably be to get it on the Capital Improvement priority list, try to get Finance Committee involved, just see if we can create the funds to do this in the year 2000 and somewhere along the way turn the engineers and architects loose to get ready for whatever year we want to try to bring this to fruition assuming it's the desire of Council to go forward with it. There's still a lot of work to do.
Mr. Galster said I guess when I start looking at the year 2000 I think 3 years down the road. I know the financial aspect has to be more fine tuned and evaluated but I see a need for it now. My personal opinion is if we wait five years we are going to go through a lot of suffering between now and then.
Mr. Danbury said due to the fact that we have an election this year it is obvious we are not going to happen real soon. I say that I hope whoever is sitting up here allows public discussion because we are talking about $4.5 million. I'd like to get some public input, not a public hearing. That's a lot of money.
Ms. Manis said I have talked to a lot of the public and I'm sure everyone who uses it is saying we need a gym now. They're saying other communities' teams beat us every year because they practice five nights a week. Our guys are begging for half an hour twice a week. I think as soon as we can get something going we should. I'm not up for election this year.
Mr. Danbury said I run around with those type of people because I play sports as well. I'm hearing the same thing but we're just being around one segment of the community.
Ms. Manis said the senior citizens use the exercise equipment. They're all out there and they're all screaming for it.
Mr. Danbury said I'm just making the comment that it is a big expense and we should at least get input. The survey definitely pointed to that.
Mayor Webster said I think we all agree that we wish we had started this process some time ago so we could see the fruits of our efforts today or next year. Unfortunately, that didn't happen. We have to take a look at the priorities in this community and right now you've dispatched the engineer to do a comprehensive traffic survey in the business part of our community on East Kemper Road. I think we need to see the results of that. We need to attach some costs. There are other items on Capital Improvements agenda and I think this needs to be plugged in there. We've given you some parameters, next year $4.1; the year 2000 $4.5. I think for us to decide we need to rush out and do it next year because we need it would be a very imprudent thing to do. I think it needs to work its way through the process and if that comes to fruition in 1999, fine. If it's 2000 or 2001 so be it. I just don't think we have $4.1 million laying around in the Capital Improvements fund today and even if we did, I don't think it would be prudent to rush out and do that and say to heck with all the other projects that are on that list that I think are very important.
Mrs. Boice said there is no question we need to do some enlargement at the Recreation Center. I know you younger people are more active at the Rec Center and hear input more than I do. I would only add this because it is a project near and dear to me, I do hope that this moves faster than the printing of the history of this City has moved because I get daily and weekly calls on that also; and I'm not talking $4.1 million. We need to move on it and I think we have gotten off to a good start. I enjoyed the presentation. You and your assistants do a super job and have everything before us and are prepared to answer any questions we have. We're lucky to have you. I do think we do need some discussion, find out where the money is coming from and get going. Planning takes a while. If we delay we're going to be past the year 2000 and I don't think that would be wise at all.
Council recessed from 9:15 to 9:30 p.m.
ORDINANCE NO. 43-1997 "AMENDING THE ZONING CODE OF THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE, SECTION 153.044(C) PARKING AND STORAGE OF VEHICLES AND BOATS REGULATED"
Mr. Knox said I should comment that the exhibit is dated June 3. There was a letter that came out from Mr. Osborn on this.
Ralph Nadaud, 11756 Neuss Avenue said I have been a Springdale resident for 34 years. I was just made aware of this amendment to this code a few days ago. As I understand it they are changing the language from two 9' x 20' parking spaces to read just spaces for two vehicles and the RV/boat vehicle. In lieu of the fact that our Mayor and Administration have established some goals and achievements to create more pride and beauty within our community, I am surprised that Planning or Council would consider amending this code to a relaxed definition which would allow more RV and boat vehicles to be parked in front of residential properties when our goals are to achieve a better looking neighborhood. This has been a great concern of mine for a long time. I have had RVs since 1966 and I've always felt strongly about parking them on the street. I've paid enormous storage fees over the years to keep these vehicles in compliance. I checked with some of the other neighboring communities which do not permit RVs or boats to be stored in the front yard on a permanent basis. I don't know why the City of Springdale would consider lowering its standards to meet this amendment.
Ms. Manis said Mr. Nadaud, this was presented to us as not actually lowering the standards but we had a letter read to us or someone had mentioned to the Mayor, that their cars would not fit into the spaces but they could park the RV in the grass on the side yard. By changing the footage requirement it allowed the people to park the RV and two cars which was the intent of the ordinance. Where do you think this is relaxing it?
Mr. Nadaud said the ordinance is written right now to allow two 9' x 20' spaces which means you have to have a 40' long driveway. There aren't many residential properties in our city that would meet that requirement. By eliminating that factor and saying you can put two vehicles and an RV/boat in the driveway is relaxing it to the point that if you only have 30' or 35' you can still meet that requirement.
Ms. Manis said in the Terrace those driveways are 35'.
Mr. Nadaud said in my estimate that ordinance was enacted to protect the property values of this city by eliminating the RVs/boats in the driveway. I've called some of our neighboring communities and they have ordinances/codes that do prohibit parking of boats and RVs in front of their property If we enact this amendment we are lowering our standards.
Mayor Webster said I am not going to argue that but believe me, the intent is to make the ordinance more fair. We have seen so many cases, where the way the ordinance was written, a person had an RV or boat and double car driveway, but they did not have 20' per parking place and they got cited even though they could park two cars and the RV/boat in the driveway and not hang out over the sidewalk. As Ms. Manis said, the intent was to make sure that if you put an RV in your driveway, you could still accommodate two cars. If you had a one car driveway and you put an RV on there, you could still accommodate one car. I think the slight change we made here allows you to do that without getting cited to court because you don't have 20'. A lot of time you don't need 20' to park two cars.
Mr. Nadaud said Mr. Webster, I've walked a lot in our community. I have to walk out in the street a lot of the times, around the aprons of driveways because of cars just overlapping the sidewalks. This used to be a violation but it's not treated as such any more. It's ignored. If you allow a boat and two cars in the driveway the problem is only going to get worse. If we're going to effect an amendment to the code, why not eliminate RV vehicles and boats period? That way it would be fair to everyone. If you are going to let someone with a double driveway park his RV out front, why not let everyone do that?
Mayor Webster said there was a citizens' committee formed when the RV ordinance was finally passed after many years of discussion. I'm not sure whether you were part of that committee or not. It goes back a number of years ago. I think if we as a city government would even think about passing an ordinance prohibiting any RV parked in a driveway I think we would have these Council chambers filled with people.
Mr. Nadaud said other cities have done it. Have you thought about Sharonville or Blue Ash? They've done it.
Mayor Webster I can honestly say I can't sit here and advocate that position. Believe me, it's not our intent to pollute the neighborhood with more RVs or to cause cars to hang over the driveway.
Mr. Nadaud said I have lived here a long time. I have a lot of time invested in my home. I do not want to see those property values decrease by allowing somebody's beat up old bus in front of the house. I would resist that with all my might.
Mayor Webster replied so would we and believe me, that's not the intent of this ordinance.
Richard Macke, 11763 Neuss, said I really can't add a whole lot to what Mr. Nadaud said except if this Council wants to do something, outlaw all RVs and boats in the side yards and driveways. Instead of decreasing the value of the property it might increase it.
Bill Roberts, 104 Harter Avenue, said I'm a new resident. I've only been in Springdale eight years. I heard about this and what concerned me the most is that you have a lot of single family homes with very short driveways. If you take a single family with a small driveway and consider putting in an RV or boat, with the amount of parking spaces available it makes it very tough. We all try to keep our yards and property up the best we can. I think if we allow an ordinance without proper attainment to keeping something up, what concerns me, is where do you stop with the concrete driveways. Can somebody have half their yard? Can you have a place for your car, RV, boat to park in your front yard? What limitations are there?
Mayor Webster said I want to make sure the record indicates whether you want RVs or don't want RVs to be allowed to be parked in driveways in front of your house is a separate issue from this. This does not authorize the parking of RVs over and above what was already allowed in previous legislation. All this does is make it a lot easier on the enforcement of the existing ordinance and also we think it is more fair to the people. It is not authorizing RVs to be parked someplace where they weren't previously authorized. We have two issues here. I may agree with you as far as not allowing any of them but if we are going to allow them, all I'm saying is this legislation needs to be amended to be more fair to the people.
Mr. Wilson said, gentlemen, what I think we are hearing from you is that assuming we pass this ordinance, more and more people will be buying RVs to put in their front yards or they'll take them out of storage to put them in their front yards.
Mr. Nadaud said people who have RVs now who aren't permitted to park them in their front yards, maybe they will if this changes.
Mr. Wilson said I believe we have an ordinance now that says you are permitted to keep your RV parked in your front yard for 72 hours to load and off-load. So they can't keep them permanently anyhow.
Mr. Nadaud replied if they have two 9' x 20' spaces they can.
Mayor Webster said that's all we're changing. We are substituting two parking places for the 9' x 20' spaces. They can keep them in the driveway longer than 72 hours if they can accommodate the parking.
Mr. Wilson said so you are thinking we will have trailers that look like mobile homes parked in someone's front yard twelve months out of the year.
Mr. Nadaud said an RV or boat can be parked permanently in the driveway if the person can get two other cars in the driveway.
Mr. Galster said I think what the residents are simply stating is that when you take the 20' depth of space requirement out you will have more people who can meet the code; therefore, more people who have RVs will be able to park them in their driveways. I think that's pretty simple. Whether or not it's fair or proper we need to decide. To think we are not going to have more RVs parked in driveways is wrong. I think we will have more RVs and boats parked in driveways because the length requirement will be such that two cars will be able to fit in 30 feet. Put a Geo and a Chevy Celebrity in there and you can park them in 22 feet.
Mr. Nadaud said I know of one instance where the boat was parked in the garage so they could put two cars in the driveway.
Mr. Galster said I understand your concern and I do see the change increasing the number of RVs that will be parked in driveways.
Mr. Danbury said I do want to remind Council that we have discussion after we have a motion and a second.
Mrs. McNear said in December 1996 the City contracted with the University of Cincinnati to do a survey. I'm going from memory but I think I am correct in this that one of the questions was how did the City feel about the RV and boat ordinance that we had and I believe they wanted to keep it the way we had it. It seems to work for most people.
Mr. Galster made a motion to adopt and Ms. Manis seconded.
Ms. Manis said I appreciate you coming here because a lot of times we are told something about an ordinance that seems to make sense and we've never looked at it from your point. Maybe there was a reason to keep it that long such as to keep the cars off of there or make it hard to meet the ordinance. I don't know what I'm going to do as far as voting. It seemed to be just a house cleaning matter when it was first brought up but now I'm wondering. I agree that it's definitely not a for or against RV thing. Didn't we discuss getting another committee when all the people were being cited to court on the Springdale beautification project.
Mayor Webster said I had talked with Mr. Danbury on that issue and we really didn't want to have another 24 month committee and we looked at what is the problem with the existing ordinance and why are most of the people getting citations and this was our fix for it.
Ms. Manis said it is a tough question now that we've heard another side and I'm sorry we have to vote tonight. I appreciate you coming and enlightening me.
Mr. Vanover said when we say two vehicles the question becomes whose two vehicles. I think we're adding a source of ambiguity with eliminating this defined thing. I'm sympathetic to the short driveways. I have one myself. I also know what it's like to have a neighbor who has an RV and to walk out your front door and have that be the first thing you see. I have a tough time with leaving this to two vehicles. I definitely cannot stand behind or tolerate any invasion into the sidewalk and Mr. Nadaud is right. We have in our area one driveway with a van and a station wagon and the back end of the station wagon is invading into the sidewalk.
Mr. Wilson said I apologize for the side conversation with Mr. Knox but we were trying to interpret this. On Exhibit A, C1, it says "any recreational vehicles, boats on trailers and trailers may be parked on driveways for periods which do not include a total cumulative time of 72 hours during any calendar month for the limited purposes of loading, unloading, cleaning or effecting minor repairs or maintenance." Item 2 says "one recreational vehicle, one boat on a trailer or one trailer may be stored in an unenclosed area in the front, rear or side yard but not closer than five feet to the nearest lot line or right of way. However, such recreational vehicle or boat on a trailer or a trailer shall not exceed 30 feet in length or in feet in height measured as is. Storage of such vehicle permitted by this subparagraph need not be on an improved surface if it is stored on a side or rear yard." I got the impression from reading this that you can only keep it in a front yard for 72 hours. Then you have to move it.
Mr. Danbury said that's the way it is right now. The issue at hand is the space requirement behind the RVs.
Mr. Schneider said the limitation would be for someone who does not meet the requirements for storage of the vehicle in length, etc. Anybody can park there for a limited period of time for loading, unloading, etc., but someone who is going to store it has to meet these requirements for storage.
Mr. Wilson asked your concern is that the recreational vehicle would be there twelve months out of the year?
Mr. Nadaud said some residents don't have available space behind or beside their houses to store the vehicles so they are looking for a spot to keep it on the driveway. Our code says you can do that if you can park two cars there that have a space of 9' x 20' each. If you put those two spaces end to end you would have to have a 40 foot driveway to meet that requirement.
Mayor Webster stated Mr. Parham pointed out something else to me that I don't think comes through on your exhibits because we're looking at faxes and copies of faxes. If I could direct your attention to Exhibit A, Section C.2.B, that section starts out "if a recreational vehicle, boat on a trailer, or a trailer is stored in the front yard" it used to read "it must be on an improved surface". Now we are incorporating "or the side yard on a side street of corner lots". We had a lady who said I can't comply with your two
9' x20' spaces but I can park my boat in my side yard and you can't touch me. We said yes we can, so we looked at the code and she is absolutely right. She can't park it in the front yard on an unimproved surface but she can park it in the side yard on an unimproved surface and we can't do a thing about it. This is another element that is in here so I would beg you that if you have problems and you want to leave the two 9' x 20' in there, please, please, don't allow this loophole to exist in here. I still would like to see it enacted the way it is presented to you but if you have trouble with the two 9' x 20's, please look at them separately.
Mr. Knox said in the change C.2. B, partially it says "it must be placed on an improved surface". Yet the very last sentence of C.2 says "it need not be on an improved surface". I would suggest that that last sentence in 2 be struck. The two of them can't exist together the way I read it.
Mr. Schneider said the change we are making in Section 2 is "side yards on a side street of corner lots". It's just referring to the side lots when you have a corner lot. I think that's what Mayor Webster was referring to. When you have that situation you must have an improved surface. If you could picture a corner lot, the side lot also faces the front of that side street. In that case we are trying to regulate it specifically to require that there be an improved surface. That's a subparagraph under 2. In all other situations it does not have to have an improved surface; the exception being a corner lot when in fact, you have two front yards, a front yard on the side street and a front yard on the front street where the address is. That's the purpose of this and it meets that requirement and I also urge what the Mayor has urged. If you are inclined to have a motion to delete the 9' x 20' requirement, that you at least consider leaving in that other change.
Mr. Galster said I would like to make a motion to amend to remove the deletion of that sentence removing the 9' x 20' parking space requirement.
The motion passed with 7 affirmative votes.
Mr. Vanover said for clarification the storage would have to be on an improved surface if it is a side street corner lot and the 9' x 20' regulation would still stand as it currently exists today.
Mr. Danbury said thank you gentlemen; especially you, Mr. Nadaud, an RV owner. I think that says a lot. We had situations last year where people only had one car and wondered why they couldn't keep an RV there. Some people don't have as large cars as in the past, but I think all of you gentlemen hit it on the head, that no matter what we do this would increase the number of RVs we're going to see. Once we put it on the books it's going to be hard to go back and take it off.
Ordinance 43-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 46-1997 "AMENDING THE CODE OF ORDINANCES OF THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE, SECTION 93.03 APPLICATION AND CASH DEPOSIT"
Mrs. McNear made a motion to adopt and Mr. Vanover seconded.
Ordinance 46-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
Mayor Webster said I would like to excuse myself from Council chambers and from any discussion on this ordinance as I do own a piece of property that enjoins the one in question and I will not be signing or vetoing the legislation.
ORDINANCE NO. 47-1997 "APPROVING THE REVISED SITE DEVELOPMENT PLAN OF THE TRANSITION OVERLAY DISTRICT FOR PROPERTY LOCATED AT 11675 AND 11685 SPRINGFIELD PIKE (DOUGLAS G. AND ARLENE S. EADES, BERNICE O. BIDDLE)"
Jeff Stawicki, architect for Mr. Eades, said I prepared the documents you have in your possession for references.
Mrs. Boice asked does anyone recall when the last public hearing was?
Mr. Danbury replied August, September or October of 1995.
Mrs. Boice said I know this has been a long time on the burner. Before you go into a full presentation, as I understand it, this is not the development of the entire piece of property. They are doing this in sections.
Mr. Galster said when the package was originally brought before Planning Commission and Council two years ago, the idea was that it would be done in phases. This piece of property Mr. Eades owned was going to be done first as Phase I. The property on the corner of Springfield Pike and Cloverdale which belongs to Mrs. Biddle would be Phase II. Mrs. Biddle did not want this to happen until she has lived out the balance of her life in her home that she wants to continue to stay in. Whether or not that will happen, there are no guarantees. I can't tell you for sure that if Phase I happens that Phase II will ever happen. There are covenants in place that allows it to happen.
Mrs. Boice said so we could have half a development.
Mr. Stawicki said as you know from the ordinance that was reviewed almost two years ago this was an application by Mr. Eades for his property that he does own and future property that is under consideration for development for a multi-family housing project. He is interested in developing this property specifically targeted towards senior citizens so that they may purchase and live in a developed community. The maximum development would involve six buildings previously approved by Planning and Council. We are proposing this evening what was proposed at Planning May 13, essentially the same footprint repeated a total of six times, only now we are looking to increase the density of each of those units to three families per building. The objective this evening is to seek Council's approval for that rezone. The aesthetics of the building are similar to what was originally approved. We have a transitional style of architecture, a combination of brick, wood siding and wood trim. We have a series of front porches in addition to garage units that face the private drive. There would be a total of six of these buildings. The rear elevation and side elevation are similar to what was proposed before. The footprint for this is effectively 50' x 120' or 6,000 square feet. We also have the floor plan that is typical for each of these buildings and we are looking at approximately 2,000 to 2,500 square feet per unit, the majority of space on the first floor. I have a second floor plan as well. We are required to have a two car garage for each unit. There is a generous amount of space on the first floor. This is typical of empty nester type housing. On the second floor we are offering an additional two bedrooms, bath and optional area for a secondary rec room or living room. Parking aprons in front of each of the garages will provide additional parking on site for guests. In Phase II we are also providing additional parking which was requested. We are making an attempt with various plantings of trees that are part of the landscaping to screen the property from Springfield Pike with white pines. In the second phase we are proposing to leave a number of the large trees and augment those with additional plantings to create an enclave that is separated from Springfield Pike and opens up inside the development.
Ms. Manis made a motion to adopt and Mr. Galster seconded.
Mr. Galster went to the drawing to show the differences in what was approved before and what they are asking for now. He said there used to be an access road that came off of Smiley. Now they are proposing coming off of Cloverdale. Originally we had a bridge that connected to the dead end of Smiley.
Mr. Danbury said that was contingent upon our final approval. That was the original proposal. We had two options. That's not an issue here.
Mr. Galster said when we approved it we approved the Smiley entrance and not the Cloverdale entrance. The applicant may have been discussing that and throwing it around in his own mind but that's not what was presented to this board at that time.
Ms. Manis said we weren't approving final plans. There was always the option that if they wanted to change it they could come back to us. It is difficult to approve the whole thing having a Phase I and Phase II, knowing that the front part may never happen. Maybe if we had another plan that shows what's there now and how it might look with Phase I. What's going to be done first? Are you going to have this entrance way here or is it just going to be one straight driveway? Ms. Manis looked at the plans and said we have the one cut out and it dead ends into the grass. Where does the traffic flow go?
Mr. Stawicki said the traffic flow comes in. We don't have the cul-de-sac per se at the end of the private drive but there is an enlarged area.
Ms. Manis said it would be like three of those buildings off of Rose behind the Knolls.
Mr. Parham asked does Phase II include Mrs. Biddle's property? Mr. Stawicki replied yes. Mr. Parham said considering it has been roughly two years since the documents were signed, are those signatures still valid on that document?
Mr. Stawicki replied yes, as far as I know.
Mr. Danbury asked Mr. Schneider, what if we approved this tonight and find out that those signatures aren't valid?
Mr. Schneider asked if easements have been presented to Planning Commission? If easements have been conveyed that's conveyance of ownership. There is no time factor at all.
Mr. Galster said to the best of my recollection there is an easement to allow the road to come in. There is no commitment to the fact that she is doing anything in Phase II but there is an access easement that has been agreed to by Mrs. Biddle to get to the Eades' property.
Mr. Stawicki stated we have the documents in place with the correct signatures for the presentation of Phase I. We don't have documentation at this point because Phase II is contingent upon a lot of things. We don't have a full conveyance of that property.
Mr. Schneider asked are you representing both Eades and Biddle in this matter?
Mr. Stawicki responded we are representing the Eades in development of Phase I.
Mr. Schneider said this plan encompasses this entire tract of land. The Planning Commission approved it that way so there has to be an application that includes Mrs. Biddle as well as the Eades because the entire land is locked and that's the only way it's going to be developed. Normally Mr. McErlane and the Planning Commission would check there so there must be an application somewhere of the owners of both properties. That's one issue. The easement issue is another. It does state the easement as conveyed on the plans. Clearly there is an easement but, if for some reason, we don't believe Mrs. Biddle is in agreement with this, is there a concern about that?
Mr. Stawicki replied no, it's just a question. This was approved by Planning for a different density, is that correct?
Mr. Galster responded Mrs. Biddle has agreed to allow the complete development as the Eades/Biddle property. My statement that there is no guarantee that it goes forward is, there is no guarantee that the rest of that has to be developed. They may have the right to develop it but there it is no guarantee that it would be developed.
Mr. Schneider stated they have no right to develop it any other way once this is approved as long as her property is part of this development. It could be fallow land forever if she chooses. If there is any feeling that Mrs. Biddle is not in agreement at this point then somebody had better touch base with her.
Mr. Vanover said it appears that the detention pond is part of the Phase I development but it doesn't look like that's completely adequate or increased for the additional development. Is that adequate? We're talking a 4 foot depth.
Mr. Shuler replied since that detention basin is shown as part of the overall plan, I'm assuming that the basin was designed for the whole project. They are going ahead and building the entire required detention facility as it is laid out on the master plan for the whole development as part of Phase I. It also looks to me as I look at this grading plan, that there will be the same natural overland flow across the front of the Biddle property which then runs into that detention basin going north along Route 4 and west along Cloverdale. A natural swale is at the end of that detention basin before it goes under the new drive and into the new channel behind. I'll certainly confirm all of that with Mr. Shvegzda tomorrow.
Mrs. McNear said Ms. Manis, you mentioned the Hamlet on Rose Lane. It's not set up exactly like that. My mom lives there. They do have a main entranceway, then you turn right into the complexes. They each have their own driveway. You can back up out of there into the main road. At the end of the road I can make a complete turn in the last driveway. You can park on that road as well and still have access for people to come in and out of that driveway.
Ms. Manis said about the entrance, where does it line up with Valley View. It's a little jagged, isn't it? If you were coming straight across Valley View it would come on the other side of the creek. Would there be a 4 way stop?
Mr. Danbury said it appears that you would have a street on both sides of the creek dead ending onto Cloverdale. Valley View would come down on the westbound side and this would be the eastbound side.
Ms. Manis said it would be off center. There is some concern that coming down the hill from Cloverdale you can build up pretty good speed pretty fast so the stop sign is there now. The residents who live there are concerned about the increased traffic in that entrance and the line of sight.
Mr. Danbury said I have spoken with some of the residents on Smiley and they are concerned about that.
Ms. Manis said nobody wants it there but I would say there is more traffic coming down Cloverdale through this intersection than back on the dead end part of Smiley.
Mr. Danbury said it looks like a beautiful complex. I think it's a little too dense for the property. Originally it appeared there was a little more green space with just two units per building and I believe the first one was a ranch style. If you say you are trying to cater to senior citizens with a two story, it's not going to work. Your market is not going to be there. This might be an investment for some people who might purchase it and rent it out. There's nothing wrong with that and we can't control it, but I think that's what's going to happen. For the development you want right now I think it's too aggressive for the parcel of land and I personally like the first one that was presented to us.
Mr. Stawicki said let me respond to the density issue. We have the same identical footprint so we are preserving as much green space with this as was previously presented.
Mr. Danbury said you have more units so that means more parking spaces, more people coming in.
Ordinance 47-1997 failed, not getting the significant amount of votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 48-1997 "CONFIRMING MODIFICATION OF COMPENSATION FOR THE VIOLATIONS BUREAU CLERKS AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY"
Mr. Galster made a motion to adopt and Mrs. McNear seconded.
Mr. Parham said as you recall, around October 1995 we received notice from the violations bureau clerks in the Police Department that they had formed a bargaining unit. We bargained with them for well over a year. In 1996, to cover 1997, Council passed legislation to authorize the annual pay increase for all employees. Included at that time was the Violations Bureau Clerks. In the past we've always removed that. In this case we simply froze the increase for those employees. We're seeking at this point to activate that and make it retroactive back to the same time as all other employees. We've held up on providing them any type of compensation primarily because we've been in the negotiation process and also because even after they had filed for their decertification, until it was finalized and we received the final notice from SERB (State Employment Relations Board) and also the appeal process expired, we did not want to move on this legislation. That has now occurred so we are bringing forth legislation.
Ordinance 48-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 49-1997 "AUTHORIZING CDS ASSOCIATES, INC. TO PROCEED WITH THE SURVEYING, ENGINEERING AND PLANNING WORK NECESSARY FOR THE STATE ROUTE 4 SOUTH IMPROVEMENTS AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY"
Mr. Wilson made a motion to adopt and Mrs. Boice seconded.
Ordinance 49-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 50-1997 "AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH CINCINNATI GAS & ELECTRIC COMPANY FOR THE INSTALLATION OF GAS MAINS IN THE PUBLIC RIGHT-OF-WAY AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY"
Mr. Vanover made a motion to adopt and Mrs. Boice seconded.
Mr. Parham stated earlier this evening I distributed a memo to you giving an update on where we stand with the gas main project. Before proceeding, move down to the second paragraph, as I'd like to correct the numbers. It should read on the other section of Greencastle, CG&E wants to install 400 linear feet of gas main; however, the project will only be assessed for "130 linear feet" and then "270". I don't think 150 and 350 adds to 400. As I pointed out, number one on the exhibit there is the amount in the first section that speaks to $151,000. That number is not the proper number; however, that number is increased from what was reported to you at the last Council meeting. The increase is spelled out in the memo and is roughly $5,544. In the previous presentation Mr. Osborn made at the June 4 Council meeting the total we gave you for gas main length was 10,125 linear feet for a total of $141,750. Having a possible total of 189 taps, at that time we thought we needed 102 to break even and on that date we had a total of 60. To look at the updated numbers, two things occurred to make the numbers increase. On your copy of the exhibit, on page 8 that shows Greencastle Drive, it is our understanding that part of the reason for this increase is that part of the gas main was increased, perhaps at the end of the cul-de-sac, to reach those surrounding properties on the end. Part two for the reason for the increase is that some of the numbers we provided you on Mr. Osborn's June 4 memo as to the length of the gas main were accurate numbers we received from CG&E. Others were part of the engineer going out and taking estimates and measurements so we did not have the exact numbers. The exact numbers for each one of these streets are now incorporated into the document. The total for the gas main length is 10,521 linear feet as opposed to 10,125 bringing about a cost of $147,294. That's the amount that needs to be plugged into Exhibit A. We still have a total of 189 possible taps and the number we need to break even has changed from 102 to 106. We now have, as of today's date, 76 commitments on the part of the residents leaving us needing 30 additional taps. We still have 113 residents to pool to make this program move forward. I've also provided very similar information that Mr. Osborn had in his June 4 memo relative to McClellans Lane and am willing to answer any questions.
Mr. Danbury said I don't know who contacted CG&E. Did they contact us on this issue?
Mayor Webster replied Mr. Sears got a flier and brought to our attention that they were having this program. We contacted them and put it together.
Mr. Danbury said I want to thank whoever put it together from our end. Whether you take advantage of it or not, just to be able to have it there will make your house more valuable to either yourself or someone else in the future.
Mayor Webster said when we first looked at it, it was $160,000 and looked like something we wouldn't be able to put together, but thanks to the efforts of Mr. Osborn, Mr. Parham, and Mr. Sears, we worked on it until we got it down to where it will pay for itself.
Mr. Danbury said I think the article in the paper helped.
Mr. Parham said I know Mr. Osborn has received a number of telephone calls relative to individuals wondering about the process and the cost. Right now if you tap into the program or make use of the service, the $800 will be waived and CG&E will install the balance of the line from your right of way to your home at a cost of $4 a linear foot. If you do not do it at this time and choose to connect at a later date, then it will cost you $800 and then $5 per linear foot.
Ordinance 50-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 51-1997 "AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH WALNUT GROVE, INC. FOR THE PURCHASE AND INSTALLATION OF THE ROSS PARK PLAYGROUND EQUIPMENT AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY"
Mr. Galster made a motion to adopt and Mr. Vanover seconded.
Ordinance 51-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 52-1997 "AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO AN AGREEMENT RELATIVE TO THE IMPROVEMENT OF E. CRESCENTVILLE ROAD BETWEEN THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE AND THE BOARD OF BUTLER COUNTY COMMISSIONERS"
Mr. Galster made a motion to read by title only and ask for a simple layman's explanation from Mr. Shuler. Ms. Manis seconded.
The motion to read by title only passed 4-3.
Ms. Manis said obviously this is the agreement for the Crescentville Road improvement. I have a question about the money. Under our agreement final construction plans for the improvement which is $125,000, what is that money for? I know we're paying for the engineering. Is that our Issue 2 money?
Mr. Shuler said the $125,000 is Springdale's share of the total engineering cost. That was broken down between Butler County, Springdale and Sharonville based upon front footage of the project. Butler County is paying half of the engineering cost. Springdale and Sharonville are splitting the other half, with Springdale paying 37.5 and Sharonville 12.5%.
Ms. Manis asked if the plans we have seen are in place and that's what will happen.
Mr. Shuler replied the preliminary plans were represented to the residents, but the Butler County Engineer has hired another firm to do the detailed plans so we will be watching them and I'm sure that there will be some elements that will be designed slightly differently than what was represented in the preliminary plans because we didn't have all the details at that time. But at the same time, anything that is changed we will see here before it moves forward. At some point I would hope they would bring a presentation to Council to let everybody know what's happening. As far as we know the concept has not changed. There were some discussions about modifications to that but the City held firm and said no, if we are going to do this, these are the things that are important to us and so, hopefully, the only thing we would see any different in the final design are some slight details that just couldn't be worked out.
Ms. Manis said for clarification, they are doing the whole project at once now.
Mr. Danbury said Mr. Schneider, if you look at the agreement itself and it's an agreement between the City of Springdale, City of Sharonville and Butler County, but Sharonville is not reflected anywhere except on page 2 in Section 1. Is there a reason why Sharonville is not in the title or anywhere else on the first page?
Mr. Schneider replied that is a fair criticism and we could add them to the title.
Mr. Danbury said we will consider this at our next meeting July 2.
RESOLUTION NO. R9-1997 "APPOINTING AN ASSESSMENT EQUALIZATION BOARD TO HEAR OBJECTIONS TO ESTIMATED ASSESSMENTS WITH RESPECT TO IMPROVEMENT OF DRIVEWAY APRONS IN THE PUBLIC RIGHT-OF-WAY"
Mrs. McNear made a motion to adopt and Mr. Wilson seconded.
Mr. Danbury said I have spoken with all three gentlemen for this board and we have set July 7 at 7 p.m. for them to meet.
Mrs. McNear said I thought when we discussed this at the last meeting that Mr. Turek was going to be named as an alternate.
Mr. Danbury responded he was going to be an alternate. Mr. Schneider and Mr. Kenworthy looked it up and found that there are statutory considerations that prohibit an alternate being on a board like this.
Resolution R9-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
Mr. Danbury said we had an official tabling of an issue last week and I think we have to have some type of closure. This is the issue of trees.
Ms. Manis made a motion that it be tabled again. Mr. Sears has not been in the office and we want to discuss some things with him. Mr. Wilson seconded.
Mrs. Boice asked what's the big discussion we have to have with Mr. Sears?
Ms. Manis responded we could get into a big discussion tonight but I don't think we want to and she's not here. I think she was going to come back.
Mrs. Boice said I will say in advance so I won't have to say it when it does come back up for discussion, I would certainly hope we are not going to spend another hour and ten minutes. We did not lose a child or a husband, or nephew or niece. We lost a tree. When I watched the replay of that meeting I don't know where the heck our priorities are but to waste an hour and ten minutes on that. We have had some wonderful people who have recently passed away in this City and what have we spent - thirty seconds extending our sympathy and we spend an hour and ten minutes on a tree. I would certainly hope we are not going to get into that again.
The motion to table passed with 6 affirmative votes. Mr. Danbury voted no.
NEW BUSINESS - None
MEETINGS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
We found out after the last meeting that Mr. Marty Kenworthy is no longer with Wood and Lamping. I wish I had known that at that time. It was his last meeting. He has left and gone to Florida.
Mr. Schneider said that was my error not communicating to Council that situation. Mr. Kenworthy has a position with a law firm in Tampa, Florida. He's joining them next Monday. He left our firm officially last Friday. He gave us adequate notice and it looks like a real good opportunity. It's a place where he and his wife wanted to go. They have no children and a good deal of flexibility. They came all the way from Iowa together. They went to junior college together, then on to college and then came to Cincinnati. He was with a major construction company building the nuclear power plant. He's an engineer also in addition to being an attorney. He has an opportunity with a firm that does a lot of construction type litigation and handling contract matters in Tampa and that is where they will be settling. I'm sorry I didn't have the opportunity to apprise Council ahead of time and certainly before Mr. Kenworthy covered for me at the meeting. I will certainly convey to him your good wishes.
Mr. Danbury said just tell him thank you for the work he had done.
Mr. Parham said the Springdale Chamber of Commerce is scheduled to meet at 8 a.m. this Friday in the Municipal Building.
UPDATE ON LEGISLATION STILL IN DEVELOPMENT
Item 3 dealing with the engineering for CSX grade separation
Public hearing for tax budget
RECAP OF LEGISLATIVE ITEMS REQUESTED FOR NEXT COUNCIL MEETING
Mr. Knox said he wants a resolution on the federal mandate to fill out another form that absolutely does nothing.
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
Council adjourned at 11:00 p.m.
Edward F. Knox
Clerk of Council/Finance Director
Randy Danbury, President of Council