|REGULAR MEETING OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF NOVI
MONDAY, MARCH 4, 1996 AT 7:30 PM
COUNCIL CHAMBERS - NOVI CIVIC CENTER - 45175 TEN MILE ROAD
The meeting was called to order at 7:30 p, by Mayor McLallen.
ROLL CALL: Mayor McLallen, (present), Mayor Pro Tem Crawford (present),
Council Members Cassis (present), Clark (present), Mitzel (present),
Mutch (present), Schmid (absent/excused).
ALSO PRESENT: Edward Kriewall-City Manager, Craig Klaver-Assistant City Manager,
David Fried-City Attorney, Brandon Rogers-City Planning Consultant, Rod Arroyo-Traffic Consultant, Greg Capote and Steve Cohen- Community Development, Don Saven-Building Department, Tony
Nowicki-Department of Public Services, Dan Davis-Parks and Recreation,
Douglas Shaeffer-Novi Police Chief and Nancy Ruetter-Deputy Clerk.
1. Plaque Presentation to Father Leslie Harding, Police Chaplain
Chief Schaeffer paid tribute to Father Harding for 26 years of dedicated service and presented the plaque.
Father Harding stated that he had recommended Pastor Elfner of the First Baptist Church to succeed him and he had accepted. Father Harding said he was tremendously happy tonight knowing that the program would continue and thanked the Mayor and Council for the opportunity to serve.
2. Proclamation, Re: Michigan Severe Weather Awareness Week, March 24-30, 1996
Mayor McLallen read the proclamation and advised citizens that there were pamphlets regarding this available at the civic center and in the library.
3. Introductions of Ordinance Enforcement Officers Jeannie Niland and Cindy Uglow.
Don Saven introduced the two new Ordinance Enforcement Officers
4. Michigan Recreation and Park Association Awards
Dan Davis, Parks and Recreation Department, stated that as a staff they had an opportunity in February to attend the Michigan Recreation and Park Association conference held in Grand Rapids. The MRPA is a State organization that oversees all of the Parks and Recreation Departments within the State. Mr. Davis welcomed to the meeting the President of the MRPA, Vic Chassen., to re-present awards that were awarded to the staff for specific programs and overall quality programming.
Vic Chassen, stated he was not the President of MRPA but was the Assistant Professor of Recreation Park Management at Eastern Michigan University, and as a result worked in the field for 20 years before he came to Eastern Michigan University to teach. Now, he gets to overview to see what departments were doing and assured the Council that Novi had the most decorated department in the State of Michigan for the year 1995. Mr. Chassen gave the following awards:
Community Service Reward Mike Cervanic, Providence Hospital Mission Health Corporation
Pacific Rim Senior Program Kathy Crawford
Park Resource Award Marilyn Troshak accepted on behalf of Jack Lewis and staff.
Lou Wendt Award of Excellence Dan Davis
APPROVAL OF AGENDA
Mr. Kriewall requested that property acquisition be added to Item #10 and to add an Item #13 to schedule a special meeting on Saturday, March 16th to look at a recreational concept.
Mr. Klaver requested Council schedule a special meeting for Thursday, March 21 at 6:30 pm to discuss critical personnel matters.
Mr. Fried requested litigation be added to Item #10 as well as property acquisition.
Mayor McLallen advised Council that the applicant for Item #2 requested this item be moved to the bottom of the agenda if he were late as he was at another council meeting in Westland.
CM-96-03-080: Moved by Crawford, seconded by Clark, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: That the agenda be approved as amended.
John Beech, representing Willowbrook Community Association, requested to delay his comments until Item #3.
Mayor McLallen stated that council had put in a place of policy that there be no delays and that everyone speak at this time. Their comments would be considered at the time of discussion on Item #3.
Mr. Beech stated their opposition to the approval of the Willowbrook Farms Subdivision Plat. Their concerns were in regard to the safety and welfare of the community, the identity of Border Hill, identity of the Willowbrook Association and Willowbrook Subdivision. Also, possibly waiting until the further land could be used for development before this subdivision could be built, legal questions regarding the use of the exiting lot and the destruction of the quality of life of the people along Border Hill and Joseph Streets. Also noted were the substandard street radius that still exist in the proposed plan.
Ruth Hamilton, 1245 East Lake Dr., Secretary of the SE Shawood Homeowners Association, read into the record a resolution regarding the PD-1 Option, as attached to the original minutes, and asked councils acceptance of same. This was in opposition to the elimination of the PD-1 Option.
Warren Jocz, President of the Willowbrook Community Association read a letter he submitted to the Planning Commission at the last meeting in January regarding the Willowbrook Farms Subdivision Plat.
Joyce Stickley, Leslie Park Subdivision, read her letter in opposition to the Willowbrook Farm Subdivision Plat. She asked that their concerns be taken into consideration prior to the resubmission of the Tentative Preliminary Plat approval for Willowbrook Farms Subdivision.
John Wauk, 24841 Joseph Dr., stated his opposition to Willowbrook Farms Subdivision, Item #3. He felt the project was premature and was concerned about the traffic problems this would cause and the flooding issues that would stem from additional water dumped into Bishop Creek.
Vicki Watkins, resident on Mill Stream which bridges into Border Hill, stated her opposition to the Singh Development because of the same concerns expressed.
Glenn Noe, Joseph Dr., stated his opposition to Willowbrook Farms Subdivision, because of all the obvious public safety reasons.
Mr. Galvin stated he was opposed to the deletion of the PD-1 Option on Mr. Solomons property. He said none of the planning reasons for the creation of the option had changed. He asked that if council decided to delete the PD-1 Option that Mr. Solomons property be excluded from the deletion. Mr. Galvin stated they had prepared a protest petition under the statute and asked that the property not be rezoned.
CM-96-03-081: Motion Crawford, seconded by Clark, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve the Consent Agenda as submitted.
1. Approval of letter of understanding between the City and Plante & Moran regarding
expert witness services to be provided by Gerald Hepp.
2. Approval to seek Proposals - Grand River Avenue Corridor Improvements Projects.
MATTERS FOR COUNCIL ACTION - PART I
1. Ordinance 95-18.530 - Ordinance Amendment to delete PD-1 Option text from
the Novi Zoning Ordinance.
Mayor McLallen stated there were two recommendations from the Master Plan and Zoning Committee that came forward to the February 19th meeting of the Planning Commission. The first alternative was that the PD-1 Option be modified to provide certain environmental protections and that the PD-1 Option subsequently sunset and be eliminated within six months. The second alternative that was recommended was that the PD-1 Option provisions be eliminated from the Zoning Ordinance and that RM-1 Zoning District provisions be amended to include and stipulate environmental protections similar to those provided for single family zoning classifications and that this matter be referred to the Implementation Committee for further action. The Planning Commission recommendation was that the PD-1 be eliminated from the zoning and had chosen Alternate 2.
Councilwoman Mutch said she had the opportunity to participate in this in past Planning Commission meetings and as a councilperson and had had to adjust her thinking on it somewhat looking at it from a planning perspective and now from a council perspective. She said the alternative to drop the PD-1 Option was one she found unsupportable as it stood. The modification with the sunset she felt opened up other problems that they were not prepared to deal with either. She proposed that council consider for discussion that the PD-1 Option be eliminated but not until such time as they had been able to take the most recent recommendations from the Planning Commission to modify the multiple zoning so that there can be for multiple the same preservation options that single family had. She felt this got to the heart of the environmental problems and concerns and at the same time protected the investments of all concerned.
CM-96-03-082: Motion by Mutch, seconded by Mitzel, MOTION DEFEATED; To recommend the removal of the PD-1 Option but not until such time as the RM-1 Zoning Classification can be amended to include the environmental protections similar to those provided for single family districts.
Councilman Mitzel said what council would be doing would be postponing action on the proposed amendment until such time it could be done concurrently with proposed RM-1 ordinance amendment. He asked Mr. Fried if that would be the basis result of the motion.
Mr. Fried said it was really a motion to postpone to a certain time.
Councilman Mitzel suggested that they put in a date certain. He felt the information they had received was a very good start to making an amendment to the RM-1 Ordinance District that would accomplish the goals that Member Mutch stated and provide for the preservation and flexibility within the RM-1 Option that was currently in the single family options.
CM-96-03-082.1: Motion by Mitzel, seconded by Mutch, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: That the main motion be amended to include a specific date certain that this would be brought back to council which would be within 90 days.
Councilwoman Cassis wanted to add that the idea was to send this back one more time and get environmental protection associated more definitely with the RM-1 and R-2 zoning and bring this back to a date certain which would be 3 months. She asked what happened if there are already woodland and wetlands ordinances in the city that apply irregardless of whatever zoning might be in place? Is there not already environmental protection under the woodlands and wetlands ordinances? She asked Mr. Fried to answer.
Mr. Fried said certainly, they are still and would be effective no matter what the property was zoned. He said those ordinances are not part of this debate and they are effective.
Councilwoman Cassis asked Mr. Rogers, Planning Consultant, to explain how when a project did come in, regardless of the zoning, how we take a look at and review for woodlands and wetlands?
Mr. Rogers said without being place specific, the project comes in, regardless of the zoning. It usually came in asking for a building permit and if they met the zoning standards set backs Mr. Savens office would issue a building permit. However, they also have to file an affidavit which must be notarized because that site plan that came in would have to be reviewed by the planning department. That affidavit would say there are no woodlands on the site and we would go out and verify that. There would also be a notarized affidavit submitted with the site plan packet saying there were no regulated wetlands, city or DNR and DEQ on the property and JCK would go out and check that; no rezoning it is just a development proposal for industry, multiple or single family subdivision. If there are found to be regulated woodlands and/or wetlands or wet woodlands in any combination concurrent with a preliminary site plan that came in would be a woodlands and wetlands permit review. Those three reviews, preliminary site plan, wetlands permit review and woodlands permit review are reviewed simultaneously by the planning commission at the same meeting to coordinate things. So, all three tests have to be passed before proceeding to a final site plan. There may be some waivers or variances that would have to proceed to the ZBA before getting to the final site plan. The woodlands/wetlands ordinances are good ordinances and would provide control whether the land was covered in the Master Plan by PD-1 bug on the map or RM-2, RM-1 or whatever. Mr. Rogers said we are not giving away the shop by further study. We are controlled and have been under these ordinances for more than ten years.
Councilwoman Cassis asked if calling the PD-1 an option in terms of a planning tool did it allow some flexibility especially in terms of negotiating around environmental protection and preservation?
Mr. Rogers replied absolutely. The property could be used as it was presently zoned, whatever it might be, or if it is shown on the Master Plan with a PD-1 bug that option if you want to come in and request flexibility in site planning you also give up something. You enter into a contract that you will build exactly what is seen. Whereas, in a customary rezoning after the rezoning there is an infinite number of site plans that could be developed that met the ordinance. Mr. Rogers stated he liked that flexibility and frankly liked the PUD Ordinance which was rescinded. He thought the PD-1, PD-2, PD-3 and PD-4 have worked well. It had provided review by council, it provides for a public hearing. He agreed that improvements in those ordinances were needed and said council should delete allowing regulated wetlands to be used for density credits in the PD-1. We might want to allow something more than a two story building height in an RM-1 if by going to 3 or 4 stories you could reduce the footprint and pull the buildings away from the sensitive lands and may be have inside parking. So, there are a few flexible standards.
Vote on CM-96-03-082.1: CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY
Councilwoman Mutch said Mr. Rogers pointed out that there are existing ordinances that have been effectively in place and had been working to protect the city and city interests in the areas of environmental concerns. The problem with the PD-1 Option is that it provided a lot of incentive for developers to consider developing those area that had been identified as problem areas for development. The primary problem is that the way it was written there was no trade off. In other communities that have a similar option that provides the flexibility there are trade offs from the developer not from the city. The problem with the PD-1 Option as it exists is the benefit is all for the developer and not for the city. Member Mutch didnít have a problem seeing PD go but would like to see some of the planning tools other cities had that we could have in a Preservation Option that we already have in other residential districts. She would like to see that in a multiple as well and felt this was an opportunity to eliminate one, provide for the other and at the same time take into consideration the concerns of the property owners in the area. To remove it without something in its place to provide those planning tools would be arbitrary and she would be opposed to it.
Councilman Clark asked if Mr. Rogers could indicate how many parcels on the City Master Plan would qualify for the PD-1?
Mr. Rogers said there were three PD-1 areas on the Master Plan. One in Section 10, about 100 acres, on the west side of Novi Road north of 12 Mile Road. A smaller parcel of 14 acres is where the condominiums are located east of Twelve Oaks Mall. The third is the pending plan for the Singh Development Company for the Crescent Oaks Continuum Care Facility east of Twelve Oaks Mall and south of Twelve Mile Road of approximately 13 or 14 acres. It came in for a PD-1 and a rezoning to allow slightly higher density of living units than the conventional RM-1 would of accommodated. Both those other two PD-1, actually is about a 5 acre parcel of PD-1 in RM-1 zoning easterly of the continuum care facility that Mr. Taubman controls and wished to use for some other purpose. Mr. Rogers thought that the boundaries should be straightened up to eliminate the anomaly there which is landlocked.
Councilman Clark said two of the three parcels that council was talking about already had development on them?
Mr. Rogers said that was correct.
Councilman Clark said the only one, for example, were council to act tonight to eliminate the PD-1 Option would be the parcel that the Solomon Group was involved with.
Mr. Rogers said that and a comparable parcel to the west that was owned in part by the Dobeck Estate, Arthur Neil, Ronald Arnold and Mrs. Bundoff, just south of Sassoons parcel. Looking at the map you might say it was about 50/50. Mr. Sassoon has submitted a site specific project called Society Hill Higher End Apartments, 3 to 4 1/2 stories in height. There is also a pending proposal for the lower southwest segment of the PD-1 by Highland Development which went beyond the PD-1 into the single family and the office proposed areas down to Twelve Mile for another rental three story development. They have changed their petition, and itís pending for public hearing on March 20th, to rezone the Dobeck property from RA zoning to RM-2.
Councilman Clark said he remembered the parcel from before the planning commission initially. At that time, there was a concern expressed about attempting to go from a low rise to a high rise density beyond Novi Road and Twelve Mile Road. He also recalled when the Sheraton proposed a high rise addition which did not receive a receptive hearing from the planning commission or council and it was dropped. He was also aware that this would increase density, would also increase traffic but was also aware that hopefully there would be some improvements to Novi Road. We are seeing improvements to Twelve Mile Road. An argument had been made that it had to be developed as multiple because given this site and the development around it in terms of commercial that residential single family homes would not work. That had not been a heavy consideration in his mind because he looked to areas such as along Telegraph, Eight Mile Road and sees some rather expensive single family homes in the Chase Farms Subdivision that did not seem to be frightened away by the fact that Eight Mile Road, which is heavily traveled, going right by. However, he was mindful that this particular site was one of only three and he was aware of the history of this particular parcel with the Solomon Group. He thought that he could support the elimination of PD-1 Option with the understanding that given the history of this particular site that the elimination not involve this parcel and in essence it would be grandfathered in but with an additional provision that any development on that site could not exceed three stories. With that he could support the elimination of the PD-1 Option and at the same time that would give the planning commission ample opportunity to review both the RM-1 and RM-2 Districts with a view to providing additional environmental protections in light of the concerns that had developed over the last several years with PD-1 parcels.
Councilwoman Cassis said the question boiled down to one very fundamental principle of Master Planning. The Master Plan is a guide for future development but itís only through the Zoning Ordinances that the Master Plan was implemented. So, in deleting a text of the zoning ordinance, PD-1, you may be creating a practical hardship, a rezoning on the property. There is a fundamental principle in planning that relates to fairness and reasonableness. In fact, it is the reason why people move here in the first place after looking at a Master Plan that there would be some reasonable comfort in the expectation of what was going to happen. The same reason why business people move here that they can have some expectation as to what the design of the city was going to be. That also goes for developers. She asked what necessitates a change now? She saw no threat to health, safety and welfare and saw no documentation offered by the consultants. She was concerned about the potential for lawsuits on this site and those adjoining it. She thought there was ample protection of the environment and the option would allow for some flexibility. Member Cassis would not support the motion to delete the PD-1 Option.
Councilman Crawford said he concurred completely with Councilwoman Cassis.
Mayor McLallen said Mr. Rogers said that the PD-1 Option essentially represented a development contract?
Mr. Fried said there would be a contract if there was development in the PD-1 between the developer and the City.
Mayor McLallen asked if the contract would be specific to the terms that were met by the developer in that particular presentation?
Mr. Fried said no, it would be in accordance with the terms of the ordinance itself. There would be no extra agreements that would be made that were not contained in the ordinance.
Mayor McLallen asked if there could be less than what was contained in the ordinance?
Mr. Fried said unless the developer would agree. You canít force the developer to agree to it.
Mayor McLallen said she agreed with Members Crawford and Cassis. Mayor McLallen said there was a proposal in process that was submitted under the existing PD-1 Ordinance but did not incorporate Section A3 which is commercial and did not anywhere come close to permitted density and has, as she understood, come close to what was expected in the existing ordinance for set backs, etc. That was why she asked if that particular proposal actually formed a contract under PD-1. She asked if that could move forward and not be jeopardized?
Mr. Fried said he did not understand where the position of the site specific was in the planning process. Mayor McLallen said the project had been submitted for review and not for decision. Mr. Fried asked if that project met the terms of the PD-1 Option?
Mayor McLallen said it had not been publicly reviewed and she could not answer that question.
Mr. Fried said that was the problem with addressing the question she asked. He didnít know what that meant until he saw what the project was and discussed it with Mr. Rogers to see if it met the PD-1, if it needed a variance or if additional controls were requested that the developer would agree to. Until he had those answers he could not address this.
Mayor McLallen asked if all the above could be addressed in a contractual arrangement and could be entered into under this option?
Mr. Fried said if the developer agreed to it. If it complied with the PD-1 Option and all the terms of it the developer didnít have to agree with it but if it went beyond that the developer would have to agree to it.
Councilman Mitzel said he saw no mention of contract in the PD-1 Option of the Zoning Ordinance.
Mr. Rogers said the word contract you wouldnít find but when the council approves the final site plan for this project that is conditioned that they would provide the landscaping, set backs, agree to the building heights, etc.
Councilman Mitzel said just like any site plan in any zoning district.
Mr. Rogers said that was correct and that compliance with the approval of the final site plan runs continuously. In fact, on the landscape plan they have to put in language that you shall maintain the landscaping down the road.
Councilman Mitzel said it is not a contract it is just a site plan approval just like any other within the city. He said as it currently exists there was an option on the books that could only be used in a certain limited area as designated on the Master Plan for multiple family and is no way linked to any performance standards for environmental preservation or other types of performances. It states it provides flexibility to have higher density, commercial, to change set backs and such but in no way provides for other protections to link with these additions. Most of the areas that this area is Master Planned for happen to be in an area that is already high density in the city. It seemed logical that we could provide flexibility for the multiple family zoning districts like there was for the single family zoning districts in the preservation option and the cluster option and the open space option. All those donít change the underlying density of the project but they did provide for the flexibility to implement the woodlands ordinance and the wetlands ordinance by allowing footprint changes, lot size changes, road configuration changes, etc. He thought the goal to work for was to have that same flexibility in the multiple family districts which PD-1 provided but was not linked to the performance standard. To just say council should revise the PD-1 Option then would limit that flexibility to only those areas of multiple family that were designated on the Master Plan. Whereas if council were to implement those performance based flexibility standards in the multiple family zoning districts they could be used city wide to implement the woodlands and wetlands ordinances. He thought that would be a win win for everyone because council would be providing tools in the multiple family districts that would allow the developers to comply with the intent of the woodlands and wetlands ordinances and implement those ordinances. We would not be limited to a certain area of the city that was only designated on the Master Plan and in the meantime we would get rid of an option that got rid of a much higher density and commercial developments with no performance based standards with environmental protection or other issues that council might find important. Member Mitzel said if the motion fails on alternative #2 he suggested that council strongly consider revising the PD-1 Option but he thought the PD-1 Option should be eliminated and incorporate the performance based flexibilities in the multiple family RM-1 and RM-2. He said he would still support the motion.
Mayor McLallen asked the Deputy to restate the motion.
Deputy Clerk Nancy Reutter repeated the motion. To delete the PD-1 Option concurrent with the adoption of RM-1 zoning provisions to include environmental protection similar to those provided for single family districts.
Councilman Clark said he could support this either way. He had indicated he would like to see it eliminated but this specific parcel excluded since it was only one of the three remaining and felt that the same result could be achieved by the motion. His concern was that he would like to see some limitation on height of development and would ask the maker of the motion if he would consider an amendment that any development not exceed three stories.
Councilwoman Mutch, maker of the motion, said it occurred to her that if some modifications were made that would be the time to look at not just height but other things so she would prefer not to do it.
Councilman Clark said if in the interim the project proposed comes forward and there is not some specific limitation council had no control over height and he was concerned about that.
Cm-96-03-082.2: Motion by Clark, seconded by Mitzel, MOTION DEFEATED; That the motion be amended that any development proposed under the PD-1 Option as presently, construed, will not exceed three stories.
Councilman Mitzel said he believed this amendment amended Sec. 4A of the PD-1 Option concerning height limitations and also if the main motion were to pass the planning commission to work on the multiple family ones.
Mr. Friedís concern with the amendment was that there should be an ordinance in front of council to contain that language before council passed on it. If the present motion was adopted it would not prevent council from directing the planning commission to amend the ordinance to contain restrictions asked for and he thought that would be the proper method to proceed.
Councilwoman Cassis asked if there would also be a problem in terms of notification?
Mr. Fried said it would have to go the planning commission and a public hearing would have to be held and then it would come back to the council for an amendment to the PD-1.
Councilwoman Cassis said then it is just an amendment to be directed back to the planning commission.
Mr. Fried said to move as expeditiously as possible on the amendment.
Councilman Crawford was concerned about putting any more restrictions on the PD-1 at this time because he thought it would eliminate some of the flexibility. In certain situations council may want to go above three stories. He asked if a petitioner complies with what is in the PD-1 Option does that option have to be granted?
Mr. Fried said the reason it is called an option is because it is an option extended to the developer to develop the property in its zoned use or to take the option that the ordinance gives him. It is not an option to negotiate. If he met the requirements of the PD-1 Option then he is entitled to his site plan approval.
Councilman Mitzel said the effect of the amendment would basically be to have the planning commission examine that as a possible amendment. It would not take effect tonight.
Mr. Fried said it would not take effect tonight.
Councilwoman Cassis was concerned that government tends to place more and more restrictions without a clear purpose or clear and present danger to the health, safety and welfare of what is at stake. She saw this as being more restrictive and might not allow for the flexibility of planning that could be done here so she would not support the amendment.
VOTE ON CM-96-04-082.2: Yes: Clark, Mitzel
No: McLallen, Cassis, Crawford, Mutch
Mayor McLallen called for discussion on the main motion to delete the PD Option concurrently
with the adoption of RM-1 zoning provisions to include environmental protection similar to those provided for single family district.
Councilman Mitzel asked if it is a 3-3 vote the motion fails, correct?
Mr. Fried said correct.
Councilman Mitzel said then the prevailing side is the no vote?
Mr. Fried said correct.
Councilman Mitzel said under council rules the prevailing side could request reconsideration at a future council meeting, correct?
Mr. Fried didnít know the exact time limit and did not recall what the rules provided for. Councilman Mitzel said his concern was whether or not that possibility for reconsideration is limited to the prevailing side. Mr. Fried said it was limited.
Councilman Mitzel said he was asking that because with Councilman Schmidís absence, we have the possibility for a tie vote. Mr. Fried reviewed the proposed new rules, which he felt were the same as the old rules and indicated any member can do it.
Councilman Mitzel indicated it would be his intent to request that reconsideration if it happens to be a tie vote that evening.
Vote on CM-96-03-082: Yeas: Mitzel, Mutch
Nays: McLallen, Crawford, Cassis, Clark
Councilman Mitzel said he would make a motion.
CM-96-03-083: Motion by Mitzel, Seconded by Mutch, MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To ask the Planning Commission to look at amending or exploring environmental performance standards in the RM-1 and RM-2 Districts as was recommended by the Planning Commission.
Councilwoman Cassis said in reading over the Commission minutes she thought they were going to continue to work and look at certain aspects of the RM-1 and RM-2 zoning as it relates to environmental protection.
Mayor McLallen felt from the discussion, the discussion wasnít finished. She believed Councilman Mitzel is looking for a specific direction.
Councilman Mitzel said he wanted to be sure by Council taking no action on the PD-1 Option and the recommendation, that we donít give them the impression that we are not interested in the multiple family environmental preservation options, and he wished to make it clear that we are asking the Planning Commission to continue that work and bring it forward.
Councilwoman Mutch said for the Planning Commission to have so strongly recommended the deletion and this Council giving them every prior indication that it was likely to go in that same direction, she felt it would be real easy for the Planning Commission to misread this vote as Councilman Mitzel has indicated they might.
Councilwoman Mutch felt the Council was in agreement that there were concerns not adequately addressed and that the PD-1 Option does have some flaws and if we are to maintain the PD-1 Option as is, then perhaps there are other things that we can look at implementing or incorporation into the multiple, so those multiple family areas would have the same benefits for its future residents as our single family districts do.
Councilwoman Mutch felt the Commission would appreciate having some sense of direction from us.
Councilwoman Cassis wasnít sure where the problem lies. We have recently approved a PD-1 Option on a senior housing care facility. If she had a clear understanding from individuals where they feel there are going to be some problems that our environment will not be adequately protected under the standing woodlands and wetlands ordinances, she would be more favorable to support this.
Councilman Crawford had the same question Councilwoman Cassis has and requested an answer. He asked didnít the same ordinances applying to RM-1 and RM-2 that apply to other things in the City.
Councilman Mitzel said the woodlands and wetlands ordinances apply to all our zoning districts, but we provide tools to allow developers to implement those ordinances in the single family residential districts, such as the open space option, cluster option and preservation option, which are options whereby they provide development flexibility in exchange for further compliance, further implementation, of environmental preservation under the woodlands and wetlands ordinances. He was just saying we should have a similar tool for the multiple family districts, so that way it will help with their goal of implementing the woodlands and wetlands ordinances.
Councilman Mitzel said if the argument is that we donít need it for multiple family districts, then he would expect some people on this Council to start arguing that we donít need it for single family districts, which hasnít been the case and they have been successful options.
Councilman Mitzel said his motion was for both RM-1 and RM-2 and it wasnít to address PD-1 but for the Planning Commission to look at the multiple family districts and bring back possible options.
Councilman Crawford asked wasnít multiple family in itself that option in a way and it was a cluster and by having a multiple family density, it does implement a preservation option.
Mayor McLallen felt part of the issue are the standards for flexibility setback and arrangement of buildings as it currently exists in RM-1 are not flexible enough to save larger percentages of woodlands and wetlands. She said RM-1 and RM-2 are very rigid about orientation of building, number of units in buildings, height, adjacency, etc., so if there are significant woodlands and wetlands on the property, the ability to have any flexibility under the current standards is very minimal.
VOTE ON CM-96-03-083: CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY
APPROVAL OF GENERAL MILLS RESTAURANTS, INC. - TRANSFER OF STOCK - LIQUOR LICENSES (OLIVE GARDEN AND RED LOBSTER)
Mr. Carlin explained that General Mills did a stock dividend and for every share that the public held in General Mills, they issued one share in a new corporation called Darden Restaurants, thereby making Darden Restaurants a public entity. They then took their wholly owned subsidiary which is your licensee and transferred that subsidiary to Darden Restaurants. You have the same entity that has owned the restaurants here, all 52 in Michigan and the 1200 across the country, that did not change. He said what changed was just the stockholder.
Mayor McLallen indicated this has the recommendation from the Planning Department and the Council needs to waive certain Ordinance requirements which seem somewhat burdensome in this case and those ordinance requirements were merely the provision of copies of building and site plans and restaurant menus, which seem not pertinent in this issue and so the Department has asked that we waive those requirements and we grant approval to this transfer.
Councilman Clark said there was a February 12, 1996 letter from the Fire Department indicating that when Mr. Conn conducted an inspection of the property in regards to the transfer, there were 19 items listed on a Notice of Violation and he didnít see anything here tonight indicating those have been addressed.
Mr. Carlin believed he has addressed those concerns and he would check in the morning.
CM-96-03-084: Moved by Clark, Seconded by Cassis, MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve General Mills Restaurant Inc., transfer of Stock-Liquor Licenses for the Olive Garden and Red Lobster after the City Clerk has verification that 19 violation items from the Fire Department have been corrected.
Councilman Mitzel asked Mr. Fried if a separate motion has to be made for the waiver of Section 3-14(j)2, which is #3 on the Planning Departmentís list and that was a Council waiver of the City Ordinance that is required. Mr.Fried said yes it should be separate.
Vote on CM-96-03-084: CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY
CM-96-03-085: Moved by Clark, Seconded by Crawford, MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: That the Ordinance requirement under Code 3-14(j)2 be waived pursuant to the Petitionerís request, given the facts and circumstances of this particular request.
APPROVAL OF WILLOWBROOK FARMS SUBDIVISION, SP95-02C - REVISED TENTATIVE PRELIMINARY PLAT.
Mayor McLallen advised this project was a 13 acre subdivision zoned R-4 that would become a 31 lot subdivision. The Planning Commission had moved to send a negative recommendation to the council for format C and the consultant recommendations and the fire department all recommend positive approval. The Community Development Department also recommended tentative preliminary plat approval for 95-02C.
Mike Kahm said many things had been said and concerns expressed by the local residents regarding safety, aesthetics and quality of life and felt that the applicant was sensitive to those concerns and would like to work with those concerns within the confines of the ordinance and design requirements of the City of Novi.
Mr. Kahm said when they last appeared before council in August, 1995 they presented what they called tonight Plan C. Then it was Plan A which was a boulevard entry and the only changes to that plan, called Plan C tonight, was they changed the configuration of the lane improvements on Ten Mile Road.
Mr. Kahm said they would also present Plan B which was presented for administrative review and did get some negative recommendations. Plan B eliminated the boulevard entry and had an access stub street off of existing Border Hill. They looked at this option in their attempt to be sensitive to some of the concerns expressed by local residents.
Mr. Kahm said the technical issues that had been a concern at the planning commission level and at council last August were essentially four issues: 1) boulevard entry, 2) secondary outlet,
3) Eyebrow at the north end of the subdivision and 4) use of one lot in Willowbrook as a connection for their subdivision which Mr. Kahm felt had been resolved. Mr. Kahm introduced these issues and said Mr. George Norberg would address them and explain the differences of the two plans from an engineering perspective.
George Norberg, Seiber, Keast & Assoc., said the difference between Plan C and Plan A was only the improvements on Ten Mile Road itself. Plan A had a passing lane and now Plan C has a center turn lane which meant approximately 6 feet would be added to either side of the road as well as deceleration and acceleration tapers at the boulevard entrance. This allowed the amount of work within the Ten Mile Road right of way to be minimized which meant not disturbing any of the fencing or trees that exit along the south side of Ten Mile Road. Also, the stacking lane would be extended down to pick up Ripple Creek.
Mr. Norberg said the water main for the site would be connected to the existing water main on Ten Mile Road and taken through the site used for fire protection and domestic service. If the moratorium continued they intended to use individual well systems. He said there was an existing sanitary sewer that is located along this property line. They would connect to that system to provide service for the site.
There were several concerns voiced at both the planning commission and at some of the homeowners association meetings regarding drainage along the property line. Currently, the flow of water generally heads in this direction; by constructing this roadway and the introduction of storm drainage catch basins at every other lot along this section they felt the situation should be approved that existed now. It would take care of the drainage on this site and during the engineering design they would take that into account. That situation would occur at other property lines as well as this one and catch basins would be placed at every other lot so that the drainage would be accommodated.
Mr. Norberg said the detention basin was designed in accordance for the city requirements for a ten year storm and this would outlet into Bishop Creek and the basin would be designed with a permanent water surface which would also provide for trapping sediments. Catch basins located in this area would have deeper sumps and elbows to help stop sediments from going into the drain. They would connect to the culvert at the existing box culvert under Ten Mile Road. Mr. Norberg provided a visual aid showing what had been discussed. It showed the intersection itself with two lanes coming in and out. He showed an extension for the box culvert on the north side of the road and the south side extension would be to accommodate the new construction or the additional six feet along that side. It would be extended beyond what would be required for the radius in order to accommodate the sidewalk and sidewalks would be provided on both sides of the boulvard entrance.
Mr. Norberg said there was discussion regarding connection to the existing city right of way and the fact of the property being landlocked. He provided a visual aid showing other subdivisions dating back to 85-86 that had made connections to internal residential streets within other subdivisions. He pointed out those that had connections at a major thoroughfare or mile road and internal streets. He also indicated those that only made connections through existing subdivision streets such as Pine Hollow, Andover Point and Warrington Manor which went through Greenwood Oaks. The situation at Willowbrook is very similar to other situations that had occurred in the city.
Mr. Norberg provided another visual aid which showed existing eyebrows that were throughout the city. He said there were approximately 50 locations within the visual and each one represented a location where there was an eyebrow, if not the same configuration as they proposed, a very similar configuration. He said recently they had Wintergreen Sub and Windemier Place along Ten Mile and thought they had both received variances from the city for those.
Mr. Norberg said they had looked at the design and construction standards with regard to these particular configurations for eyebrows and couldnít find any place that specifically prohibited them. Under one section on page 728 it did reference, under the cul-de-sac section, it spoke to the length of the cul-de-sac and further spoke to where a corner occured it allowed the eyebrows and actually gave specifications as to radius.
Mr. Norberg said they were present to seek a waiver but was not certain it was absolutely necessary according to the Design and Construction Standards. Mr. Norberg presented Plan B that they had prepared after meeting with the planning commission and the homeowners association. They presented the plan to the homeowners association and later submitted it to the city. The reviews from the consultants and staff were so bad it was withdrawn. Most of the negative comments came from traffic concerns along Ten Mile Road and the existing Border Hill Drive. It was done basically because of the concerns to maintain the existing character within the subdivision. The only differences between this plan and Plan C were the boulevard had been eliminated and all the lane improvements on Ten Mile had been eliminated. There are 32 lots as opposed to 31 and there was slight change in the detention basin configuration. They were still willing to proceed with this plan as well as Plan C.
John Crane, Traffic Engineer, said he was contacted by Singh Development last year regarding this subdivision requesting information on how many new trips would be generated with a 31 lot subdivision. The answer was approximately 168 in and 168 out during a 24 hour period. Since then Mr. Crane worked with Singh extensively to redesign the subdivision to provide the highest level of safety obtainable from a subdivision boulevard street in to Ten Mile Road. He said Plan B, as proposed, has no improvements to the safety or for the access onto Brookside Road; itís simply a stub street dumping the cars into there and then out to Ten Mile Road.
Mr. Crane said while the residents were concerned about the identity of their neighborhood and their street teeing into Ten Mile it was not in the best interest of the city to have a local residential street when there was an opportunity to have two local residential streets intersecting Ten Mile or to have one low volume intersection when there was an opportunity to increase the level of service, capacity and safety. That is what is proposed by the Singh Development project.
Originally proposed was a passing lane and that was all that was required. A paved shoulder along the south side so the cars could stop to make their left turn into Willow Road and pass them. Mr. Crane worked with Mr. Arroyo and came up with a design for a complete separate passing lane. Cars would move into their own distinct lane and the through movements on Ten Mile Road would continue in a separate lane. He said that lane, because itís an offset, had been extended to the tapers to the east so that Ripple Creek Road had the same opportunity. This did two things: )1 It improved capacity and traffic flow along Ten Mile and 2) it eliminated rear end repeat accident history. The intersection was upgraded Willow Road to two lanes in and two lanes out which would eliminate any waiting for vehicles. His analysis at one vehicle every two minutes. Mr. Arroyo looked at the absolute worst case and decided it would be one vehicle every minute. There would be minimum delays and it would run at an A service level during the peak hours.
Mr. Crane said a deceleration area was also provided for cars making right turns so cars in the through lane could pull over into the deceleration taper and then make the right turn. Also, as part of the intersection design the entire intersection was moved easterly away from the box culvert. The box culvert has a 1950's guard rail design on the north side. Itís the current intersection design that provides a site restriction to motorists entering Ten Mile Road. They moved it away, widened it and actually eliminated the need for the guard railing.
Mr. Crane said if he was presenting this as a topics traffic operations program on capacity and safety he thought the road commission or any government agency would welcome the safety improvements. They also did a collision diagram which showed the accident history at Ten Mile in the vicinity of Border Hill and Ripple Creek. They had three years of data, 92 through 94. The 1995 data is just becoming available and he hadnít seen it yet but expected it to be exactly the same or a little more as the traffic volumes increased. There were 11 accidents in three years and only one was a legitimate intersection accident. There were 10 correctable accidents in three years at this location and eight people were personally injured. The redesign with the capacity lane, the separation of the vehicles for left turns would eliminate that accident pattern entirely. He said it was a good interim move until the city moved ahead with the widening to a multi lane cross section whether five lanes or three lanes. He said they were providing a safety improvement off site that he didnít see how council could turn down. Itís a high level of safety, an elimination of an identifiable repeat accident pattern.
Mr. Crane said they had told the Singh people that people donít like gravel roads and would get off the gravel road and use your access. They heard again and again the repeat concerns about folks taking the cut through movement from Brenda Lane and out to Grand River. They went out to Camborne Place and sat for a day and watched the traffic movements between 7 and 9 am and between 4 and 6:30 pm. He said between 7 and 9 am eastbound from the gravel road there were 6 vehicles and from the paved road going to the gravel road and up to Grand River there were 4 vehicles. In the afternoon they found the same thing. There were 14 vehicles between 4 and 6:30 pm coming from the gravel road and into the paved roads and the majority of them were going to homes. The same situation, 13 vehicles, were going from the paved to the gravel road and to their homes. The point was that the volumes were very small, insignificant and of very low consequence. He said they anticipated and expected the very same exact situation when the subdivision went in except, they guessed, that many of the residents on Joseph and Brenda would probably use their intersection because of the safety and improvements as opposed to the existing Camborne Place.
Mr. Crane talked about the friction factor or the impedance to through movements proposed with this design. He said it was a good design and provided an impedance so that the traffic coming down the road does not use it as a driveway. It cuts the speed by imputing a turn, even if it isnít a full turn, by requiring vehicles to slow down and travel through the residential subdivision. He believed it had been used almost 50 times in the city, itís shown in the city design standards, and they believed it was a reasonable design.in the subdivision. He looked at the turning radiusí, sight lines presented by the design and found them all to be acceptable. He said when looking at the site and at the intersection design and what had been proposed he would ask that the 10 repeat rear end accidents be looked at that would be eliminated along Ten Mile Road in the vicinity of Border Hill and Ripple Creek by the proposed reconstruction of the project.
Mayor McLallen reminded council of the three written letters in addition to the comments by Mrs. Stickley, Ann Oberts and Lee McKenna. All of the letter were in opposition to the proposed subdivision as presented. Mayor McLallen summarized the issues residents had brought up as being loss of identity to the community known as Border Hill, potential safety issues with the children and families who used Joseph St. and the cross traffic, the boulevarding on Ten Mile Road, the concern for insurance and liability in the subdivision and the outstanding issue of the turning radius.
Councilman Clark agreed, regarding health and safety, that the re-engineering of the proposed traffic design on Ten Mile Road does eliminate a potential for accidents. However, it didnít address the health and safety issues that were raised by the residents in terms of an internal dirt road that was unpaved and the children who have to use it everyday to get to school where there are no sidewalks in the area. The comment in terms of liability jumped out at him in light of the existing covenants and restrictions in the existing subdivisions. In the documentation that council received there were comments with reference to a possible policy of title insurance providing some protection to the city, although, he noted that Mr. Watson had recommended some additional conditions and it seemed to suggest that those additional concerns could not be addressed in the standard title insurance policy. Therefore, he had some real concerns about that in terms of the city buying into litigation. In addition, he said, the developer had a good track record in the community. However, the developer bought, knowingly, a landlocked parcel knowing that as presently construed he would have a problem if not an impossibility of developing it without some relief in terms of what he had proposed. So he had a problem with that. Finally, there was an issue raised in terms of flooding. He said it seemed that water was a very sensitive issue and understood there was reference made to the use of a storm drain that would deal with a ten year storm. Heíd been in Novi since 1979 and remembered talking about preparing for the proverbial 100 year storm, although, weíve had two of the 100 year storms since he had come to Novi one of which did considerable damage at Ten Mile and Grand River . He had some real concern for health and safety when it came to the idea of water and flooding
and for all of those reasons and in light of the fact that Singh Development had a good track record with reference to this particular proposal for Willowbrook Farms Subdivision he could not support it.
Councilwoman Mutch asked Mr. Fried to address some of the questions that had been asked such as Mr. Joczís question regarding whether or not any developer could acquire property that was part of the platted Willowbrook Subdivision and then use that in configuring the road or access to the rest of their subdivision?
Mr. Fried said Lot 68 in Willowbrook Estates Subdivision provided that it should be used only for single family residential purposes. He said there was case law that said although there were restrictions in the covenants it could be used for street purposes. He said we did not rely on that alone so we insisted that the developer supply the city with a title insurance policy that would be issued after the lot had been utilized for street purposes so that the policy would protect the city against any damages that might occur as a result of the use of that restricted lot for street purposes. If relying on case law alone we would have concluded that Lot 68 could be used for street purposes but we didnít feel that would be sufficient security for the city because it might involve us in litigation. Therefore, we insisted on a title insurance policy that would insure the city that that restriction would not prevent the lot from being used for street purposes.
Councilwoman Mutch said so the question of insurance that she thought was what Member Clark was referring to, the mention of that by Mr. Fried or Mr. Watson with regard to this was only in the case that others might disagree with the interpretation based on case law and decide to hold the city liable or accountable for having gone ahead and allowed a street to be created.
Mr. Fried said that was correct.
Mr. Fried said he thought he raised the question about liability insurance protection for the city and for the use of the streets for vehicle traffic. We have insurance coverage for that and we are protected for that..
Mayor McLallen was not clear for the party that brought that issue up. She said Mr. Fried very clearly indicated that the only liability issue or insurance issue that the city had talked specifically to in this issue was title insurance.
Mr. Fried said that was correct.
Councilman Crawford said no matter what technicalities or legalities were talked about on this project it was his feeling that the developer had bought a landlocked piece of property and thought to develop the property in the way they proposed was both insensitive and disruptive to the people on Border Hill and Joseph and he would not support it.
Councilman Mitzel asked Mr. Fried if the council opted to deny the plat did it have to do so based upon findings of the Subdivision Control Ordinance?
Mr. Fried said absolutely.
Councilman Mitzel said he had a question concerning the subdivision boundary. He said he believed as part of the plat the boundary of the subdivision, a legal description, had to be provided and part of it looked like it overlapped the Lot 68 area of the existing Willowbrook. He questioned how that would be dealt with because it seemed like one area would be platted within two different subdivisions.
Mr. Fried said he would have to look at it to really clarify it but the important element that weíre concerned with as a municipality was that they include Ten Mile Road within their plat and he thought they did that. As to the use of Lot 68 in their plat he would have to discuss it with the engineers as to whether that plat conformed with the Subdivision Control Act by the use of the overlapping plats.
Councilman Mitzel said there seemed to be certain recurring items that keep coming up. One is the eyebrow by Lots 16 and 17 and he thought that evidence had showed that that was a common design feature throughout the City of Novi. He was satisfied that the eyebrow configuration, seen throughout the city, seemed to work and was acceptable to him. The use of Lot 68, the city attorney said could be used based upon current case law, but yet it still seemed like there would be a lot of issues that would be attached if that were to go forward. The boulevard entrance, although there was a lot of safety improvements, he was curious whether or not those same type of safety improvements could be made on Ten Mile Road with a similar configuration if it wasnít a boulevard.
Mr. Arroyo said if the applicant had proposed or if it was a condition of approval that they modify the existing entrance or reconstruct Brookside Dr. as it was proposed to be a non-divided residential street instead of a boulevard then a 28 foot back to back residential roadway would be required which is a standard dimension for residential roadway. In that instance if they were constructing it under Plan C then everything would be the same so he assumed that they would still have the safety improvements on Ten Mile Road that would be part of that component because they were in fact modifying the approach to the roadway. Then that impact would be widening out the approach and modifying it slightly as it existed today. He said what we wouldnít get was two outbound lanes so there was some loss of capacity there so that outbound traffic couldnít separate into separate left and right turn lanes. As you know, left turns could be difficult to make onto Ten Mile Road with the volumes on Ten Mile Road, therefore, all the right turning traffic would have to wait if there was left turning traffic ahead of it if that situation existed. Mr. Arroyo said from an inbound perspective with a boulevard entrance there would be two inbound lanes and actually the way that itís configured and the way that it would be reflected if it were approved as it is. He said people turning into Border Hill and potentially onto Mill Stream, that left turning traffic would be able to separate itself from inbound traffic heading northbound whereas if there were a single entrance that was not divided it would be one lane and therefore if someone was waiting to make that left turn and there was opposing traffic the traffic behind it would have to wait for the left turner to clear. So there are some capacity improvements that are associated with the boulevard entrance that arenít associated with an undivided entrance and youíd get the separation from the left inbound traffic from the outbound traffic when there is a boulevard approach. When there isnít a boulevard approach there isnít that separation.
Councilman Mitzel asked how critical was that capacity in the backup from only having one lane in a subdivision of this size?
Mr. Arroyo said there were about 65 lots to be served by this if the homes on Border Hill, Mill Stream, the homes on the proposed subdivision and those on Brenda and Joseph if they were to come through this subdivision.
Councilman Mitzel asked if there was a level that Mr. Arroyo used as a threshold for justifying having two lanes?
Mr. Arroyo said one of the things that might be helpful was to look at a comparison of level of service of that intersection with and without that improvement. He didnít know what the difference would be. He said it would not be the same as a subdivision with several hundred units with one point of ingress and egress.
Councilman Mitzel said he thought it could be done without a boulevard entrance in the sense that it would be consistent with the whole area of Ten Mile Road. There was no large boulevard entrance and most of them are standard subdivisions and it would be more in keeping with the character. It seemed it would still have the safety improvements that could be done in the area on Ten Mile Road and it could be done with less impact if it wasnít a boulevard entrance. He asked Mr. Fried if that was grounds for denial?
Mr. Fried asked if Member Mitzelís conclusion was that it was not a safe entrance?
Councilman Mitzel said no, that was not his conclusion. He was asking if a preference for one or the other would be grounds for denial?
Mr. Fried said not a preference. It would have to be a conclusion based on safety.
Councilman Mitzel said from what Mr. Arroyo said it appeared that both would be safe.
Councilman Crawford asked what the status was of the lot split referred to in Mr. Rogers letter of January 8th?
Mr. Rogers said he came upon a letter from the Deputy City Assessor and right now the Cagle family, those three parcels go all the way back into this subdivision about half way. He pointed the location of the property out to Member Crawford. He said his understanding was that it had already been sold off. He pointed out the property that was already sold to Singh Development and the property that included Lot 1 of Leslie Park Subdivision that was the proposed site for the new Glendaís Market which had already received Preliminary Site Plan approval. It still needed to be refined in the final site plan. He said this was the split that he was talking about in the letter attached to his letter. He said it was in the process of happening and was one of the check point procedures that was done on all site plans. The other split from the church property had already occurred.
Councilman Crawford asked if the lot split at the north was a proper lot split and would it need a variance or waiver?
Mr. Rogers said yes it was a proper lot split and would not need a variance or waiver. It is zoned NCC, it had met the preliminary site plan review by the planning commission. It is not too different from what happened at Camborne Place where Charles Rousseau sold off his frontage and sold off the balance practically to Ten Mile for the Camborne Place Subdivision.
Councilwoman Cassis asked where Camborne Dr. was and did it connect to any of the present streets?
Mr. Rogers pointed out the proposed Camborne Lane and the Leslie Park Subdivision, Joseph and Brenda. He pointed out Camborne Place Subdivision that came through off of Ten Mile and then the lots with a cul-de-sac. He pointed out the connection at the end of Joseph up to Grand River. Mr. Rogers said the stub that went into Brenda Dr. was probably called Brenda.
Councilwoman Cassis said so it does connect into Camborne?
Mr. Rogers said yes and that has been opened both ways. The other stub was called Camborne Place which exists today and deadends on a direct line with Camborne Place. The gentleman who has the farm has not seen fit to allow the street to cut through, although, that was explored. If he did put it through he could divide off three or four lots on the north side of that road and then the water system and the sewer system could move through. The two stubs would exist but there was a missing gap of approximately 350 feet.
Councilwoman Cassis said Mr. Rogers had pointed out a couple of things: 1) there is a street that is unpaved (Brenda) but it has access to a paved street and the petitionerís description mentioned that traffic did seek paved roads and that was why some traffic was going out Camborne Dr. and 2) the property that belongs to another owner but at some point in time might be sold and developed in that area and provide access over. She asked if Brenda was a shorter distance between the proposed subdivision and Camborne than is Joseph?
Mr. Rogers said Brenda was shorter.
CM-96-03-086: Moved by Crawford, seconded by Clark, MOTION FAILED: To deny
Site Plan 95-02C, Revised Tentative Preliminary Plat, for health, safety and welfare issues concerning disruption to life on Border Hill and Joseph and internal traffic and for concerns on flooding in the Bishop Creek area.
Councilwoman Mutch asked the motion maker or Member Clark to site the reason for denial.
Councilman Crawford said he would need help in stating all the technical reasons. There are a lot of common sense reasons not to do it.
Mr. Fried said the most articulate reason was the traffic flow within the subdivision and the adjoining properties.
Councilman Crawford said that was acceptable to the maker of the motion. He asked what about the disruption of present subdivision and did it have any merit in this motion?
Mr. Fried said Member Crawford could supply any reason he chose but he did not think that that would have merit to it if presented in court.
Councilman Crawford said heíd put it in anyway; the health, safety and welfare of the residents on Border Hill, disrupting their neighborhood and the same with the residents on Joseph.
Councilman Clark said he would accept that and seconded it.
Councilwoman Cassis said this parcel was undeniably a very difficult parcel to develop. Perhaps it would take time for certain conditions to be available to make this a more feasible development especially in terms of access in the internal roadway system. She had some concerns about adverse circumstances to Bishop Creek being located so close. Also, she had always had concerns about unpaved streets being used as part of access by other subdivisions. She thought in time it might resolve itself but it was not ready tonight. She said she would support the motion.
Mr. Fried said when Member Crawford had asked that question it had not crossed his mind but another problem that was articulated by the council was the drainage that would flow into Bishop Creek and there has been nothing offered in that regard. He felt this was a very important issue that needed to be resolved.
Councilman Crawford said he would include that in the motion.
Councilman Clark said he would second the inclusion.
Councilman Mitzel said by the ordinance drainage was not to be addressed until after tentative preliminary plat approval.
Councilman Crawford said if that was a concern of his he could include it in the motion.
Councilman Mitzel said a solution was not required at this point so how could it be denied based upon them not having a solution?
Mr. Fried said council might not require them to have a solution but itís a question the council should address while considering the plat.
Councilman Mitzel asked if the city could ultimately deny all access to the city roads within that area?
Mr. Fried said no. He didnít think the city was denying all access to city roads in that area.
Councilman Mitzel thought the motion stated the connection pattern to Brenda.
Mr. Fried said it was the internal pattern of the streets that the traffic was a concern that he thought was one raised by the council not the external attachment to other subdivisions or to the public streets.
Mayor McLallen said all of these streets are public.
Mr. Fried said it was the internal pattern within the proposed Willowbrook Farms Subdivision.
Councilman Mitzel thought the maker of the motion stated that it was the connections to the existing subdivisions.
Councilman Crawford said that was one of his concerns. The connections to Joseph and Border Hill and the internal roadway system also.
Mr. Fried said he did not think it denied the developer access to the public streets. It said he had a concern the way it was attached to the public streets.
Councilman Mitzel asked if the city could require the developer to obtain more land in order to develop this land?
Mr. Fried said no.
Councilman Mitzel said he concern was that the city not deny ultimate access to the public roads within the area. He said we seem to be in a predicament where every configuration tried fault is found with it one way or the other but yet weíre told they still have the right to access public roads within the area. He didnít see how this could be eventually resolved because the property had certain rights for develop under the zoning ordinance and the city had certain obligations for health and safety. To flat out deny every configuration that is ever proposed I just donít see where this is eventually leading.
Mayor McLallen said this had been a very long and difficult process. It is very tenuous when there is a developer who has a challenged piece of property and yet did manage, with one exception, and the only exception she could see was the radius at the northern end, which there is enormous precedents in this city for doing. An actual comment from our traffic engineer that design and construction standards are looking at incorporating that variance within the standards. That is the only thing this project did not meet according to the ordinance today. Tonight this council had on several occasions talked about equity and fairness. There are a lot of things about how we feel preference, history, we donít like change, it makes us uncomfortable, I want my street to stay the way it is forever. It is not going to stay that way and unfortunately this development has come before us now and we have to deal with it equitably now. The rules are clear, meet the ordinance. According to our consultants and staff the ordinances have been met. She said she could not support the proposal to deny because in her opinion with one exception for the radius this petitioner has met the ordinance.
Councilman Crawford said he didnít think it was within the ordinances for a developer to buy a virtually landlocked piece of property and then access that by disturbing existing neighborhoods such as the Border Hill entrance and Joseph Dr. which is nothing more than a very large gravel driveway.
ROLL CALL VOTE ON CM-96-03-086: Yeas - Crawford, Cassis, Clark
Nays - McLallen, Mitzel, Mutch
Councilwoman Cassis asked Mr Fried to explain what that vote actually represents, and Mr. Fried said it was a vote to deny and a vote to deny does not mean that you have approved it. It is left in limbo. He said the Council is required to take action on this plat, either to approve or to deny, within a certain period of time, and they have 90 days from the time it was originally submitted and 25 days from receipt of the recommendation.
Mr. Kahm said he would be willing to table this matter and come back at a later date and Mayor McLallen said based on what Mr. Fried just said, she didnít think they need to table because in essence it was already tabled.
APPROVAL OF ROYAL CROWN ESTATES NO. 6, SP92-08N - FINAL PLAT.
CM-96-03-087: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Clark, MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To grant Final Plat Approval to Royal Crown Estates No. 6, SP92-08N subject to Staff and Consultantsí recommendations.
APPROVAL OF PAYMENT TO LUDWIG & ASSOCIATES - COMMUNITY SPORTS PARK DESIGN SERVICES
CM-96-03-088: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Clark, MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve payment in the amount of $24,522.00 to Ludwig and Associates for the Community Sports Park Design Services.
Andrew Mutch of 24541 Hampton Court indicated he has researched the PD-1 Option and the other residential options the City has such as the Cluster Option, the Preservation Option and the Open Space Option and also those options in other communities. He came to the conclusion after looking at all of those and doing comparisons, that the PD-1 in its current form is no longer suitable for development in this community today.
Mr. Mutch said regarding comments tonight about loss of flexibility that may occur if the PD-1 was deleted, he would point out that we have several options that do give developers flexibility. He said the PD-1 Option has no standards. He felt it benefits directly the developer at the Cityís expense with no benefits to the City. He said what the Planning Commission proposed was an alternative that would allow the developers to complete their projects but would also benefit the City and he felt the Council by their action that night failed the City in that regard.
MATTERS FOR COUNCIL ACTION - PART II
ADOPT A RESOLUTION, RE: BUDGET AMENDMENT 96-14 - $40,000 - MUNICIPAL GARAGE - CAPITAL OUTLAY
Mayor McLallen explained this stems from action taken on the refurbishment of a municipal garage on Eleven Mile and the project, because of contaminated soils, was over-budget and this is a request to settle the account.
CM-96-03-089: Moved by Clark, Seconded by Cassis, MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve Budget Amendment 96-14 in the amount of $40,000 for the Municipal Garage Capital Outlay.
ADOPT A RESOLUTION, RE: BUDGET AMENDMENT 96-15 - ORDINANCE AND ZONING ENFORCEMENT (SUPPLIES-UNIFORMS)
CM-96-03-090: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Clark, MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve Resolution regarding Budget Amendment 96-15. (Resolution attached)
Councilman Mitzel believed there should be a correction on the Contingency New Balance in the amount of $101,265. He said that was identical to the amount listed on the amendment we just passed and subtracting $4,400, the New Balance would be $96,865.
Councilman Crawford requested the Finance Department to double-check that figure.
SCHEDULE A SPECIAL MEETING OF CITY COUNCIL FOR 7:00 PM ON MARCH 14, 1996 FOR THE PURPOSE OF INTERVIEWING BOARD AND COMMISSION APPLICANTS
Mayor McLallen indicated there were three vacancies on the Library Board now.
Councilman Clark indicated he couldnít make the March 14th date and would suggest a Saturday morning meeting. Councilman Mitzel asked which Boards and Commissions are they supposed to interview.
Mayor McLallen said it was her understanding that we have still after tonightís interviews nearly 20 applicants for Community Clubs and then they have the Cable Access Commission and the Library Board.
Councilman Mitzel asked was March 14th intended specifically for Community Clubs and then March 25th is an hour slot and was that for Community Clubs again or for the other ones and Mayor McLallen indicated it was to pick up Community Clubs.
Councilman Mitzel suggested that the deadline for Community Clubs application would be April 8th for appointments and they could have the interview session for them the week before and by then, all the applications will be in.
Councilman Mitzel then asked what was after the Special Meeting on March 25th and it was stated nothing, and he suggested on March 25th to have their interviews for Boards and Commissions.
CM-96-03-091: Moved by Mitzel, Seconded by Clark, MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To schedule a Special Meeting of the City Council for 6:30 PM on March 25, 1996 for the purpose of interviewing Board and Commission applicants; that the City Clerk post a notice in the local paper for the interviews; and that the deadline for applications is March 22, 1996.
Councilman Mitzel explained his motion was that they all be in by March 22nd and then do the interviews on March 25th. He said if there ends up being 50 Community Clubs, we can give them priority and we may not get to everyone that day.
Mayor McLallen said she would get a count on how many vacancies exist so we can get a corrected ad in the paper this week.
Councilman Mitzel said by having the applications in by the March 22nd and interviews on March 25th, it will allow us flexibility if we decide to have a re-interview of certain selected people.
Mayor McLallen said she would take all this information and work with Mrs. Bartholomew to see if we can get a viable format to present everyone on March 25th.
Councilman Mitzel restated the motion:
To Schedule a Special Meeting of City Council for 6:30 PM on Monday, March 25th for the purpose of interviewing Board and Commission applications; that the City Clerk post a notice in the local paper for the interviews; and that the deadline for applications is March 22nd.
Vote on CM-96-03-091: MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY
SCHEDULE AN EXECUTIVE SESSION TO IMMEDIATELY FOLLOW REGULAR MEETING - UNION NEGOTIATIONS, PROPERTY ACQUISITION, LITIGATION
CM-96-03-092: Moved by Clark, Seconded by Mutch, MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To schedule an Executive Session to immediately follow meeting.
APPROVAL OF DRAFT COUNCIL ORGANIZATION RULES AND ORDER OF BUSINESS (CHANGES MADE AT 12/9/95 SPECIAL COUNCIL MEETING ARE INCLUDED)
CM-96-03-093: Moved by Mitzel, Seconded by Crawford, MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve the Draft Council Organization Rules and Order of Business as presented based on December 9, 1995.
Councilman Clark noted on Page 6 under Audience Participation Rules, 8C, he would insert in the last sentence, "City of Novi commissions, boards, employees and consultants is permissible, but inappropriate profane, vulgar or abusive language will not be tolerated."
Councilman Clark referred to Page 8, bottom of the page and stated the word, "Council" is missing an L.
Councilwoman Cassis said she also had concerns with Audience Participation Rules, 8C, and she had a problem with the word inappropriate and felt it was vague and would like to delete it.
Mr. Fried would suggest the language should read as follows: "While comment upon the actions, inactions or performance of the Council and the City of Novi commission, boards, employees, and consultants is appropriate, profane, vulgar or abusive language will not be tolerated."
Councilwoman Cassis said her other comment is regarding the 3 minute rule for Audience Participation. She indicated she has called other areas who deal with this and the 3 minute rule tends to be little restrictive. She would propose to move that up to 5 minutes and perhaps anyone representing a group or an association up to 8 minutes. She felt people were nervous when speaking and it takes a minute to warm up and then suddenly we are up to 3 minutes and no matter how we tell them their time is up, it is awkward and people are embarrassed.
Councilwoman Cassis said she would encourage us to be flexible here and stay within the concept of why we wanted to have some rules, but make it more comfortable for people to come before us.
Councilman Crawford disagreed because he felt this is a business meeting of the City and in his experience with other cities, Novi is very liberal at Audience Participation. He said several cities would have a request in to the City Clerk on the Wednesday or Thursday before the Monday Council meeting in order to speak at that meeting. He felt they have three Audience Participations which affords anyone ample time to speak.
Councilwoman Cassis said she would like to vote on the entire package of the rules but she would make a motion that we vote separately on the Audience Participation Rules.
Moved by Cassis, NO SECOND: To vote separately on the Audience Participation Rules.
It was stated a motion wasnít needed for this as they were splitting the question and there were no objections.
Councilman Mitzel then referred to Item S - Administrative Questions, bottom of Page 5 and he believed that had been deleted previously, but was left on. They would have to reconfigure T and U to S and T. The Council was agreeable to that.
Councilman Crawford then referred back to Councilwoman Cassisí question of having a motion, and he asked was that a division of a question and it was stated yes and Councilman Crawford indicated that would require a motion and Councilman Mitzel said he would second the earlier motion.
CM-96-03-094: Moved by Cassis, Seconded by Mitzel, TIE VOTE: To vote separately on the Audience Participation rules.
Councilwoman Cassis said her other comment was under G, "Council members will not respond to general Audience Participation...." and she was wondering if they might want to insert, "unless permitted by the Chair." She said there are rare times when there might be an appropriate comment that an individual might make and it could be very uncomfortable to stifle that.
Mayor McLallen commented she knows it has at different times precluded us from offering a knee-jerk reaction that would be difficult. She said the times we want to respond as a group or as an individual, are times when we have been challenged and that rule is there almost to protect us.
Councilwoman Cassis said she was uncomfortable with that and the sections she just discussed, but primarily the opportunity for individuals to speak she would like to see it more flexible.
Mayor McLallen then said Council would vote on the motion.
VOTE ON CM-96-03-094: Yeas: Cassis, Clark, Mitzel
Nays:McLallen, Crawford, Mutch
MOTION FAILED- TIE VOTE
Councilwoman Cassis asked if there was a problem on this Council to allow her to say that she wanted to vote on the body of this and in a positive way. She said she was being forced to vote no against all of these Council rules. She would like Council to allow her the opportunity just to vote on this particular item.
CM-96-03-095: Moved by Mitzel, Seconded by Clark: MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To split the question into Rules and the Audience Participation Rules.
Vote on CM-96-03-095: MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY
Councilman Mitzel referred to Page 3 the second and third paragraphs, where there is a big OR and two choices. He thought they had reached a consensus on the second paragraph below the OR. He said the sentence reads, "The Council will have as a goal to conclude the meetings by 11:30. OR..." We had talked about inserting that language underneath OR, but apparently in the Rules, both sets have stayed. He was thinking that it should just be the second part, "The Council shall conclude meetings by 11:30 pm."
Mayor Mitzel asked if there was a consensus to remove the sentence above the word OR and there was a consensus.
Councilman Crawford said he remembered a lot of discussion on that but didnít remember the end result. He recalled that he didnít want to restrict it and he had said at that time, if they had a goal to conclude by 11:30 and along with starting at 7:30 now and the Agenda preparation, we should be able to reach that goal and not tie us in with something as concrete as that.
Councilman Mitzel said from his standpoint, he remembered supporting the second part - which was the Planning Commission type language and that most of us had favored that one.
CM-96-03-096: Moved by Mitzel, Seconded by Clark: MOTION CARRIED: To strike the sentence, "The Council will have as a goal to conclude the meetings by 11:30." and the word, "OR."
Councilman Crawford said he didnít agree because the goal is sufficient and we are tying our hands unnecessarily and if we get into "shall conclude by 11:30," then we are going to have to vote on it or we are going to have to determine if there are any petitioners out there or if Administration needs a direction, and he felt it was simple enough to have as a goal, to do it by 11:30.
Vote on CM-96-03-096: Yeas: McLallen, Cassis, Clark, Mitzel, Mutch,
Mayor McLallen stated while on Page 3, the sentence, "In addition to the regular meetings above, the Council shall hold a regular meeting on the Monday following the Regular City Election." She felt that was redundant to the Organization Paragraph One and there was a consensus of Council to delete it.
AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION RULES - #8, A-H
CM-96-03-097: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Mitzel, MOTION CARRIED: To adopt Audience Participation Rules as stated with the correction made previously with the insertion of the words in Item C, "is appropriate."
Councilwoman Mutch said F under Audience Participation Rules states, "Video presentations may not be substituted for Audience Participation unless submitted by 5:00 PM the Wednesday prior to the meeting," She asked what do they do in a situation where a video presentation, once viewed by someone, may not be appropriate.
Councilwoman Mutch said she could see allowing the flexibility as part of a presentation, but she didnít know that it should substitute for someone being here. She also asked who determines whether it is appropriate for viewing.
Councilman Clark indicated the way this reads, "Video Presentations may not be substituted for Audience Participation unless submitted by 5:00 PM the Wednesday prior to the meeting." The way he read that was if someone wanted to show a video and was representing a group, that person has 5 minutes and they submit their video. He assumed the only thing we would be looking at is to make sure that the material on the video isnít slanderous or libelous in some regard that pertains to the subject that the person is going to speak to. He said he would be representing a group who wants to use a video and he has a total of five minutes and that is all.
Mayor McLallen asked if they would consider all the constraints with ItemC pertain to the video.
Councilman Crawford said he thought the reason we divided this question was to allow Councilwoman Cassis to vote on the main body and not vote on this and not to discuss this because we could have done that via amendments a long time ago. Mayor McLallen said she misunderstood what Councilwoman Cassis meant.
Councilman Crawford said that was the reason why they divided the question and Councilwoman Cassis made the case of not letting her vote on this.
Councilwoman Cassis said and then Councilwoman Mutch pointed out there might be room for some changes to come forward by voice of a motion to see if that would gain approval by the majority of Council.
Councilwoman Cassis said it has been split, so could she make any motions relative to any of these. Councilman Crawford said no, the reason for the split was to vote no on that and not make amendments to it. He then asked Mr. Fried.
Mr. Fried said he misunderstood the split question and he thought Councilwoman Cassis voted yes on everything except this and then said we will discuss Item #8 Audience Participation at a separate time and then she can do whatever she wants at that particular time, and she didnít commit herself to voting no on anything and that is what he thought the split question was about.
Councilwoman Mutch said she still had the concern about the video and they need to know what is going out there because she thought it could be a problem.
Councilwoman Mutch discussed the 3 minutes and felt if they change it to any other number, they still have the problem. Her suggestion would be to find some other way to help them keep track of the time and the Mayor has tried to find a way to do that in the least disruptive way possible, which is to indicate you still have some time left.
Councilman Mitzel then asked if the changes they had so far were regarding Item #C, a typo correction and then for Item F they added the following words, "and subject to the constraints in sub-paragraph C above," and there was a consensus of Council.
Councilwoman Cassis then made the following motion to amend:
MOTION BY CASSIS, NO SECOND, MOTION DIED: To adopt the following language to Section F: "Unless the Chair grants additional time, each speaker may address the meeting for a period of time not to exceed 5 minutes, provided that the Chair shall allow a speaker to complete their thoughts. Persons representing an association or a group with a voted position, may speak for a period not to exceed 8 minutes.
Councilwoman Cassis then said she would make another motion to amend:
CM-96-03-097.1: Moved by Cassis, Seconded by Clark, MOTION FAILED: For Section G - Council Members will not respond to Audience Participation unless permitted by the Chair. Matters will be referred to the Administration, who will provide reports as to action taken or placed on a current or future Agenda for discussion.
Councilman Crawford said he would not support the amendment but he agreed with Councilwoman Cassis that on a very rare occasion, it is convenient to make a response, but he concurred more with the Mayor that he felt they were protecting themselves by not getting into a debate. He could foresee occasions where the Chair would not grant that approval and you are going to have a Council member get upset with the Chair because approval wasnít granted. He felt it is better to leave it the way it is.
Councilwoman Mutch said in regard to placing a matter on the Agenda, we can do that now and maybe not as a direct result, and not as an immediate response. She felt they do have the ability to do that now and to add after and you can add it to either the same Agenda or bring it up later.
Councilwoman Cassis said it was her idea that any member of Council at that point, and that is what she means about allowing to respond - one Council Member may say it is an important enough matter to be put on tonightís Agenda.
Vote on CM-96-03-097.1: (4) - Nays - McLallen, Crawford, Mitzel, Mutch,
(2) - Yeas - Cassis, Clark
Mayor McLallen said then there is a motion to adopt the Rules with the changes that were agreed upon which is, "is appropriate," and C, the subject constraints of C and F.
Councilwoman Mutch said on Item E under Audience Participation, it states, "There shall be no Audience comment by voice, etc.," and she felt they need to insert something like "not allowed, or not tolerated." She said they had indicated under C, that profane, vulgar, and abusive language would not be tolerated. Councilman Mitzel felt it was just a carry-over from the current language and it shouldnít be a problem.
Councilman Crawford said they had already discussed that possibility of who or how are you going to enforce it, and we realize it is probably unenforceable, but that it was a good idea to have there.
Councilman Crawford said when the Rules are redone, he would have a suggestion. He said under Item F, all those sentences are very important but are buried into that one item. He said under Item F, after discussing time and groups, there is another item they discuss which is important, "Time may not be deferred to other speakers or to other portions of the meeting." He felt that warrants being Item G, and then the Video Presentations discussion could be Item H and then move all the other items down. Everyone supported Councilman Crawford.
Councilwoman Cassis said she would like it noted that she agreed with a, B, C, D, E, and H, but her vote would reflect her disagreement with Sections F and G.
Vote on CM-96-03-097: (5) - Yeas
(1) - Nay - Cassis
Councilman Mitzel said when they did this back in December, he thought they had only worked through to Item #10 and he wondered if they would have the willpower to work through the rest of it sometime in the future. He wasnít suggesting this month or next month but maybe after budget, we may want to consider cleaning up the language on the committees and such.
Mr. Fried said regarding enforcing these rules in regard to Audience Participation, they might want to think about a provision in here that if any member of the audience violates the rules, they will be asked to leave the meeting and if they donít, there is an ordinance that makes them trespassers.
Mayor McLallen asked if Council wanted to put it in here and Mr.Fried said if they donít put it in there, then they would have difficulty enforcing the rules.
Councilwoman Cassis said people who come before us are of good will and they have problems and concerns but they are addressing their elected officials and she would hate to have that in here and Mr. Fried agreed. He said that was a method of enforcing it if they want to do that. Councilman Mitzel felt if it becomes a problem, they could address it then. Mayor McLallen indicated the Council was comfortable the way it is.
CLAIMS AND ACCOUNTS - WARRANT NUMBER 458.
CM-96-03-098: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Clark, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve the Warrant in the amount of $331,930.61.
SCHEDULE SPECIAL MEETING - MARCH 16, 1996
CM-96-03-099: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Clark, MOTION CARRIED: To schedule a Special Meeting on Saturday, March 16, 1996 at 10:00 AM to tour a recreational facility out of town.
VOTE ON CM-96-03-099: Yeas - Crawford, Cassis, Clark, Mitzel, Mutch
Nay - McLallen
SCHEDULE EXECUTIVE SESSION - MARCH 21, 1996
CM-96-03-100: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Clark, MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To schedule an Executive Session to discuss personnel matters and pending litigation on Thursday, March 21, 1996 at 6:30 PM.
Debbie Bundoff said she had three separate issues. First, she had made a suggestion previously that they might think about placing the Audience Participation at the end of all their Committee Reports and she wondered if they had considered that option. Secondly, she had brought up an issue before about the flooding of a drain a little less than 700 feet north of 12 Mile Road on Novi Road. In the last few weeks, that level has increased to the point where you can no longer find that lane. It used to be 3 feet from the water to be covered and now you canít find it. There is a problem with that drain being blocked and it goes under Novi Road, out somewhere in the cemetery.
Ms. Bundoff indicated the third issue regarded their action taken that night on issue #1 for the PD Option. Thank you for making a decision and hopefully the Planning commission will take into account their comments and relook at what they thought was important to allow preservation into the RM-1's. She hoped that all of them would in turn read the PD Option and what it says. She felt the comments about preserving wetland areas is more than sufficient to allow a 100 foot setback that cannot be touched. Basically that is a better choice than an RM choice which allows you to encroach closer to the waterways so she was glad with their decision.
Mayor McLallen asked Mr. Kriewall to have JCK look into the drainage issue.
Councilman Mitzel said Ordinance Review met a few weeks ago and they will be forwarding some Ordinance Amendments that were finalized that night.
MAYOR AND COUNCIL ISSUES - None
Councilman Mitzel said he knows there have been requests for information on the Methodist Church and the status, and he believed Councilman Crawford had requested it and he was just wondering if it would be appropriate and he has asked that we have that as a discussion item at their next meeting. Mayor McLallen said that the Methodist Church background information needs to be on the next Agenda.
MANAGERíS REPORTS - None.
Mr. Fried explained we have reached a settlement in regard to the Brainer case in the amount of $175,000 plus amounts as required by the Statue, which include interest, cost, and Attorney fees and that is pursuant to the discussion he had with Council in the Executive Session and Mr. Fuller who was the Court Appraiser on this matter, came to the conclusion that the take involved $175,000. He said the court recalls that our appraisal came in at $67,600 and the defendants appraisal came in for $792,000 and Mr. Fuller came in with $176,000, so that is the settlement subject to the approval of Council.
CM-96-03-101: Moved by Clark, Seconded by Cassis, MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To authorize the City Attorney to accept the settlement of $175,000 plus interest, costs and attorney fees in the Brainer Lawsuit.
Mr. Fried said the Mayor had asked him what is the Champagne Weber Case and why are we hiring an expert that has asked to be paid $320.00 per hour and Mr. Fried explained the Champagne Weber case involves claiming by Champagne Weber that the City of Novi breached a contract in the construction of public improvement. He said they are asking damages in excess of a million dollars. He said their claim is that they were delayed in the completion of their contract because certain Detroit Edison poles were not removed timely and caused the immobilization of equipment that exceeds a million dollars.
Mr. Fried said in order to defend that kind of a claim, we need an expert in accounting who deals with construction equipment, construction contracts, and Mr. Heath from Plante Moran is such an expert. We recommend that we be allowed to use him in this case so that he can go in and audit the books of Champagne Weber to see if there is any justification for their claim of a million dollars.
Mayor McLallen asked what was the limit of our ability to retain him and is there a bottom line. Mr. Fried said we can always discharge him any time, he has to submit a monthly bill, but then you are getting into a problem when you do that because once you spend x amount of dollars on him, and then say you will not spend anymore, what good is the x amount of dollars that you have already spent. He said he would be reviewing his bill to see whether he is performing the services he is supposed to perform and whether they are excessive. He added Plante Moran is not a stranger to the City and he had assurance that they will watch his bill too.
There being no further business before the Council, the meeting was adjourned at 12:30 AM.
Mayor City Clerk
Date approved: ____________________
Transcribed by Charlene McLean and Sharon Hendrian