MONDAY, APRIL 29, 1996 - 7:00 P.M.



Mayor McLallen called the meeting to order at 7:20 P.M.





ROLL CALL: Mayor McLallen, Mayor Pro Tem Crawford, Council Members Cassis, Clark, Mitzel, Mutch, Schmid



ALSO PRESENT: City Manager Edward Kriewall, Assistant City Manager Craig Klaver, Director of Finance Les Gibson, Systems Analyst Dean Miller, Parks & Recreation Director Dan Davis, Deputy City Clerk Nancy Reutter






CM-96-04- : Moved by Clark, Seconded by Crawford, MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve agenda as submitted.


Mayor McLallen reported the purpose of this meeting is as stated in the 1996-97 Budget.








1. Finance - Data Processing (1.0 hour)


Mayor McLallen advised this item is about the proposed new department. Mayor McLallen said the proposed budget for this line item is $199,000 and includes the addition of one personnel. She said what they are proposing is an entirely new department. She advised what Council is here to discuss and what is presented are two entirely different things. She advised Council has not discussed, researched, or authorized research and discussion on the formulation of a new department. She said before the presentation begins, they should be aware that this discussion has not been made with this decision making body.


Mr. Marino gave his presentation and reviewed accomplishments over the past year. He stated there was an addition of one personnel and they are really looking at three people because of transition. Further, they are asking to have Mr. Millerís replacement moved up six months.


Mayor McLallen said as Mr. Marino just pointed out, the budget that Council has before them shows a bottom line figure of $199,153. Of that amount, the supervisorís salary is $55,000, permanent salaries of $35,971, and part-time salaries of $12,500. The cost for all the personnel is $132,653. Mayor McLallen reported there were two categories in Supplies, Consulting and Equipment, Conferences and Workshops and Capital Outlay for Equipment.





Councilman Mitzel said the sum of the line items is $214,153 and not $199,153. Mayor McLallen believed the $15,000 discrepancy could be that they did not include the supply line item.


Councilman Mitzel said what they are really talking about is bringing in Mr. Millerís replacement this year and then he discussed Mr. Millerís salary.


Councilman Schmid asked how much has been spent so far on computers and Mr. Gibson replied $400,000. Councilman Schmid asked what is being proposed for this year and Mr. Gibson replied $2M.


Mr. Toth explained the bulk of expense so far has been to replace the computers and wiring, etc.


Councilman Schmid said he would like to know the payback of the cost of the computer investment. He had concerns about an investment in equipment that would become obsolete in two years and he would like to see some return on their investment.


Mr. Toth said the City Clerkís office maintains a listing of businesses and the assessing office has another file. He explained these are existing different files in different departments and they are attempting to make this one prompt on the network that everyone will access and have common prompts to decrease the work load. He further stated these are the things they have discussed with each department.


Mayor McLallen asked Mr. Gibson to clarify that the cost in the budget is $214,000. He replied except for the personnel cost for the new individual, personnel are actually just being repositioned somewhere else in the budget. Mayor McLallen asked if it included the roughly $40,000 for office equipment, operating supplies and data processing or is that a new $40,000?


Councilman Mitzel asked to direct Administration to do a study and not the committee. He said he would support having a new person on board early, but suggested hiring at a lower pay like they did with the Clerk and then raise that person to a manager level after Dean leaves.


Councilwoman Cassis discussed bringing in the replacement at half year.

Councilman Clark said he did not want to see them get into a situation where theyíre adding another layer of bureaucracy in government. He saw one technician recommended for each fifty users. He added that because the City of Detroit police cars have computers, it is assumed that they do some things faster, but he hasnít seen more police on the street.

Councilman Clark said if Novi is going to get this, theyíre going to get more experience, but he didnít think theyíre necessarily going to get the benefit and he would like to see some benefit. He felt that the City must come into the twenty-first century and it will take computers to do this. However, he said how much and how fast is what Council needs to take a hard look at in terms of what their actual needs are. He reminded Council that they are not the City of Detroit, nor are they a large metropolitan city with numerous offices spread throughout the city.


Councilwoman Mutch feels that managing the information is important because all of the departments will be drawing from the same information.


Mr. Marino said what they are really asking for is to have Mr. Millerís replacement moved up.


Councilwoman Mutch said a one-person department is the one who is going to control the flow of information to all city departments and all of the city departments are drawing the same information and the security of that data base, the access of the data base and the way the departments relate to each other.


Mr. Toth suggested talking with Mr. Miller about how much time he is putting in, because he is putting in some ungodly hours.


Mayor McLallen then thanked Committee members because they volunteer an extraordinary amount of hours. She said the City has so many financial challenges and as Councilman Schmid said, they need to prove the efficiency of every dollar which passes through. Mayor McLallen agreed that everything that they have pointed out has merit. However, the question is whether it is going to fit in this year or next yearís budget. She said the Committee has done more than their job by showing Council what is needed to come into the computer age in a responsible way.


Councilman Schmid suggested that they consider the same equipment, but less of it.


Councilwoman Cassis asked about Mr. Millerís background.






2. Parks & Recreation (1.0 hour)


A. General

B. Parks Capital Fund

C. Building and Grounds


Mayor McLallen asked Mr. Davis to begin with his request for $1.7M which is slightly more than last yearís budget.


Mr. Davis said this past year was a very successful year for the department. He said the department acquired approximately 750 acres. He added that they also started park development process. Mr. Davis reported they would like to continue the progress they have already started and their request is basically a maintenance request. He also said they have presented a detailed analysis for park maintenance. He asked Council to look at all of their existing park land needs and how they maintain them.


Mr. Davis reported the proposed budget reflects how they plan to deal with the newly acquired land. He further reported they will address this by hiring seasonal staff during the peak periods from April through October to minimize their needs to hire full time staff. He said the only staff change they have discussed is elevating a supervisory position to an administrative role and he indicated that was in the process.


Mayor McLallen said this is an excellent program. Further, Parks and Recreation is a department that is civically minded. She said the directive before them is to approve the General Parks and Recreation Budget for $1.7M. This yearís budget reflects a slight increase for citizenís programs and the maintenance of the physical land, which has increased considerably this year.


Mayor McLallen asked if the budget reflects overriding Headlee and they stated no.


Councilwoman Mutch asked what are the Deputy Directorís duties? Mr. Davis said basically she will supervise the clerical staff and work directly with the Parks Commission. He indicated it would be day-to-day administrative duties and she will not abandon all of her functions.


Councilwoman Cassis discussed going back to the voters for more millage.


Mayor ProTem Crawford asked if they choose to go above the budgeted amount, is there some capacity above the appropriation? Mr. Davis replied there is nothing available above the appropriated amount.


Mayor McLallen said they will move on to the Parks and Recreation Capital Fund.

Mr. Gibson advised this is a separate, freestanding fund that had to be established to account for the proceeds of the $9.9M.


Mayor McLallen said they will move on to Building and Grounds. Mr. Gibson said this is one activity within the General Fund. Mr. Davis explained this fund handles all of the costs for the full time facilities supervisor and the part time positions that supervise the building at night. He added capital outlay for the building is needed because although the building is wearing well, it is ten years old and they need some improvements.


Mayor McLallen said the actual bottom line then is slightly less than the estimated bottom line for this year. Mr. Davis said that figure reflects the personal services area.


Mayor McLallen stated in previous budget conversations they talked about the demands on Mr. Davis as Department Head and that they should move Marilyn Troshak to a Deputyís position. She added the demands of Building and Grounds is enormous and although the party that is supervising it is an individual in the department, they may be approaching the time when they need to review this because not only do they have this building and the grounds, the City also has fourteen buildings.


The Mayor asked if there is an economy in having an individual oversee all of those buildings instead of each department head who is working under restrictive time conditions because of commitments to his particular department. Mayor McLallen indicated she is concerned about the serious capital improvements for the building that they do not reflect in the next yearís budget. Mayor McLallen said Council has specifically talked about setting aside small portions of money every year to address those needs instead of waiting until the repair requires significant money. She continued that the costs that will come up from the Building and Ground rehabilitation also need to be addressed.


Mayor ProTem Crawford said there seemed to be a considerable amount of funds left unexpended in the capital outlay area as of February 29 and he asked what they anticipate for those funds. Mr. Davis replied much of that has already been processed.


Mayor McLallen said they need to discuss setting aside money every year in a small portion to address those needs rather than waiting until the third year.


Councilman Mitzel asked how many dollars they would need to finance the parks? Mr. Davis replied they will need $600,000 to $700,000.


Mayor McLallen said this is probably the Cityís most significant department from a citizenís standpoint because it is part of the residentís quality of life and is why they like to live in Novi. She said it is a very ambitious program and Council appreciates the departmentís effort.

Mayor McLallen suggested the resolution for the Tim Pope Memorial should include that the Committee will determine a type of memorial, a funding plan, and a time table.


Mayor ProTem Crawford discussed the time frame of getting a report back and felt they should get a report back by July 1, 1996. He also recommended that they forget the volunteer committee. He said that they should get input and have open meetings, but to establish a committee by interviewing will take a lot of time. He added the committee should consist of a Commission representative, an administrative representative, a Council Member, representation from the Pope family, and then also invite community input.


Councilman Clark indicated he supported the resolution, but he would like to see something done this year.


Mayor McLallen believed Council would like a deadline of sixty days and this will be placed on the Monday meeting agenda.



3. Administrative Wages (0.25 hour)


Mayor McLallen asked if this item is concurrent with the memo they received over the weekend. Mr. Kriewall replied it was and was a 3% increase across the board. Mr. Kriewall said they also discussed the merit plan last week. He said they are recommending decreasing the total number from last yearís $42,000 to $20,000.


Councilman Mitzel expressed concerns about the $20,000. Mayor McLallen said she felt Councilman Mitzelís concern is that the previous Council philosophy behind this current $20,000 was that it was a pool that could be awarded and everyone got some portion of the percentage increase. Then there is a specific pool where the top employees or the bottom employees, if their performance has been outstanding, would get a portion. However, it would be used to award those employees who had outstanding performance.

Councilman Mitzel said he was surprised that everyone gets the same percentage.


Mayor ProTem Crawford said everyoneís salary is within mid-range. Further, salaries in this range are increased by 3%, as is the minimum and then the $20,000 is added on top of that amount to certain people. That would then become their new pay scale within that range.


Mayor ProTem Crawford asked why they do not include the City Manager and Assistant City Manager? Mr. Klaver replied they have never included them.


Councilwoman Mutch discussed the Deputy Director position in the Parks & Recreation Department. She said that position will be given the authority to speak in Mr. Davisí absence and yet it is in the bottom quarter of the pay scale.


Mayor McLallen agreed that putting the Deputy Director position in the bottom quarter of the pay scale doesnít make sense. She said it tells someone they are going to have a certain job and status, yet they create this job based on a defined activity and responsibility and they then pay that person just so much. She feels they have to make the alignment for the position and establish it more equitably. Council then discussed this matter further.



4. Funds (0.25 hour)


Mr. Gibson reported these were all freestanding bonds.


Mayor McLallen reported the new Budget appears to be $15, 580.00 and $760,000 would be a half mil.



5. Transfers to Other Funds (0.25 hour)


6. Contingencies (0.25 hour)


7. Budget Wrap-up (1.0 hour)


Mayor McLallen said the $15,583,047 includes all of the bottom line items that are to be presented to Council. Mayor McLallen advised there were many presentations that were valid for increases in personnel. As they were talking earlier, Mayor McLallen said they have not yet even begun to talk about what to do with all the different committees and the dollars attached to them.


Mayor McLallen asked Council where they would like to go from here and if there are any things that are not addressed in the $15M that Council feels strongly committed to? Mayor McLallen also asked if there are some things in the Budget that they can move further or should they accept the recommendation?


Mr. Kriewall stated he would give Council a rough cost on the Fire Ordinance. He mentioned no new fire protection officers.


Mayor McLallen asked if there were any further comments on the Budget process? Since there were none, she said they would wrap up and make a final decision on May 29. She said the Public Hearing for adoption will be held on May 13, 1996.









There being no further business before City Council, the meeting was adjourned at 10:45 P.M..








Mayor Deputy City Clerk



Date Approved: October 7, 1996




Transcribed by: Barbara Holmes

Sharon Hendrian