|REGULAR MEETING OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF NOVI
MONDAY, JULY 20, 1998 AT 7:30 P.M.
COUNCIL CHAMBERS - NOVI CIVIC CENTER - 45175 W. TEN MILE ROAD
Mayor McLallen called the meeting to order at 7:40 p.m.
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
ROLL CALL: Mayor McLallen, Mayor ProTem Crawford, Council Members DeRoche, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch, Schmid
APPROVAL OF AGENDA
Councilwoman Lorenzo requested they add Hazardous Waste Day as Item 2 and Status of Application for Storm Water Master Permit as Item 3 under Mayor and Council Issues.
Mayor McLallen requested they add Request to Hold Interviews for the Parks & Recreation Commission and the Library Board as Item 4 under Mayor and Council Issues.
Mr. Kriewall advised that the Police Department requested that Council remove Item 2, Local Law Enforcement Block Grant for 1998 under Public Hearing and Item 2, Request for Approval of Local Law Enforcement Block Grant for 1998 under Matters for Council Action - Part I.
Councilwoman Mutch requested that they add Ordinance Review Committee Replacement as Item 5 under Mayor and Council Issues.
CM-98-07-224: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Lorenzo, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve Agenda as amended
Vote on CM-98-07-224: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, DeRoche, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch, Schmid
A. COMMUNITY SERVICE PLAQUE
1. Andrew Mutch - Library Board of Trustees
2. Philip Koneda - Parks & Recreation Commission (Absent)
3. Robert Pheiffer - Parks & Recreation Commission (Absent)
4. Michelle Bononi - Planning Commission
5. Peter Hoadley - Planning Commission (Absent)
Mayor McLallen stated it is her privilege to thank those volunteers who have served the community. She personally thanked Andrew Mutch and Michelle Bononi for their service. She then added that Andrew will now serve on the Planning Commission and that Michelle advised she is taking a hiatus to work on her professional career. Mayor McLallen read the sentiment and presented the plaques to Andrew and Michelle in recognition of their volunteer service.
Mayor McLallen publicly thanked the other volunteers who were unable to attend tonight’s meeting. She noted that Phil Koneda will serve on the Planning Commission.
1. Michigan 50's Festival
Mayor McLallen presented a Proclamation to Bob McCann and Jane Thomas on behalf of the city for the eleventh anniversary of the Michigan 50's Festival and proclaimed the week of July 22, 1998 as Michigan 50's Festival Week.
Bob McCann advised that they expect more than 300,000 people for the festival beginning Wednesday night with the Mayor’s reception.
S.A.D. 148 - Salow’s Walnut Hill Sanitary Sewer
Mayor McLallen advised this is Public Hearing #7 and is the final approval of the roll and noted that a majority of the land owners have agreed to the improvement. She further noted that the residents asked that the cost improvement be amortized over thirty years.
No public comment was given.
2. Local Law Enforcement Block Grant for 1998 - REMOVED
Jean Jacks - Thornbury Drive, advised that they raised the subject about the paving of Dinser and Delmont at a recent homeowner’s association meeting for the Pebble Creek subdivision. She explained that most residents were under the impression that Wixom Road, as it ran in 1990, was to be paved with 1990 road bond funds and instead, the city ended up straightening the road. Consequently, the sentiment of the homeowners paying for the paving of Dinser and Delmont is low. Ms. Jacks reported that Dinser and Delmont is in constant need of attention because it does not drain properly. Further, she advised that traffic from the recently developed subdivision travels through their subdivision to avoid traveling on the dirt roads and she believes the increased traffic puts their children at risk unnecessarily. Ms. Jacks also reported that these streets have a substantial amount of commercial and retail vehicles using it to access Dinser’s Greenhouse. On behalf of Pebble Ridge Estates, Ms. Jacks asked that the city consider paving Dinser and Delmont Drives using funding from the upcoming road bond proposal.
Mayor McLallen noted Item 5 includes discussion of road bond issues.
Mary Muller - 45460 Addington Lane, is before Council to discuss the issue of erecting stop signs in Addington Park. Ms. Muller reminded Council when residents approached the city to request stop signs that Council asked the residents to provide further research. Ms. Muller then noted that the resident’s central concern is for children’s safety in the neighborhood. She reported that Addington Lane gets a significant amount of traffic because it connects to other subdivisions and exits onto Taft Road are used as a cut through. Further, she advised that they have observed motorists traveling at high speeds.
Ms. Muller reported that she visited the subdivision in West Bloomfield where a child was recently killed and noted that the configuration of this subdivision is identical to Addington Park. She then provided a police diagram that she received from the West Bloomfield Police Department showing how the accident occurred and described the similarities between the two subdivisions. She noted that a yield sign is at the intersection where the accident occurred and believes the reason the child was killed is because a yield sign does not require traffic to stop or slow down. Further, Ms. Muller reported that the residents in Spring Meadows Subdivision advised that they have observed several near misses and that they also believe a stop sign could have avoided this tragic accident. Ms. Muller advised that the residents of Addington Park share this contention and that yield signs hurt more than they help. Ms. Muller added that the two yield signs are placed in the Spring Meadow Subdivision where the accident occurred in the same manner as the two yield signs are placed at Devonshire and Addington in Addington Park Subdivision.
As suggested by Councilwoman Lorenzo, Ms. Muller advised they have also interviewed Galway residents and advised they believe that the stop signs on Galway do decrease speed. Ms. Muller acknowledged the information in the manuals Craig Smith used to make his recommendation, but in reality and regardless of what the statistics show, the people that live along streets with stop signs believe that motorists do slow down if stop signs are erected at intersections. She added that they also spoke with residents who live on corners and they advised there is no excess noise. Ms. Muller added that she spoke with Jean Nichols (wife of Sheriff Nichols) who lives at a three-way stop and Ms. Nichols believes that the stop signs do help reduce speed. Ms. Muller also spoke with Sheriff Nichols and although he agreed that stop signs reduce speed, he believes enforcement is also necessary.
Mayor McLallen advised that the city will continue to analyze this matter.
Unidentified Speaker - understands that the city encourages the connection of subdivisions. However, she believes that the city also bears the responsibility of creating a safe environment for the children in regard to crossing streets. The speaker advised that she moved into Addington Park because of the great number of children and reported that as of February 1997 there were 147 homes with 194 children. As a responsible parent, the speaker advised that she enrolled her child in the national Safety Town program which emphasizes the importance of crossing at a stop light or stop sign. She stated if there is no stop sign, they would then create a situation which could potentially endanger a child.
Keith Salo - 48804 Pebble Lane, supports the earlier comments made by Ms. Jacks about the paving of Dinser and Delmont. Mr. Salo added that Pebble Creek residents had hoped that the Harvest Lake project approval would have included the paving as part of that roadway in order to accommodate the nine hundred homes in that development. Unfortunately, Mr. Salo reported they did not include the paving of the road. He added that they also initiated a SAD petition, but it was postponed when the Harvest Lake project came forward. Mr. Salo asked when would the residents know whether they would include these two roads in the bond issue?
Mayor McLallen replied that tonight’s discussion is about whether the city should proceed with a bond issue for this year’s November ballot. She continued by stating if Council agrees, a list of roads would go before the voters this November. She noted there is a listing of the proposed roads and they will be a part of their discussion. In response to Mr. Salo’s question, Mayor McLallen advised that even if the bond were passed in November, the improvements would not take place until the year 2000.
In response to the question about whether Dinser and Delmont Drives could be paved as a part of a requirement for another development area, Mayor McLallen advised that Michigan law does not permit off site improvements if a road does not directly border a development.
Jean Lang - 45523 Addington Lane, in response to instituting a Neighborhood Speed Watch Program, Ms. Lang reported that according to Page 12 of the Speed Control Residential Area Handbook it states: "Neighborhood Speed Watch Programs have little or no effect on through traffic problems." Ms. Lang advised they believe that a majority of the speeders are from residents of adjoining subdivisions and that installing stop signs at the intersections on Addington Lane will greatly reduce cut-through speeding traffic. Ms. Lang noted she has unsuccessfully tried to institute an informal speed watch program. Further, she advised they have contacted the police to make them aware of the program and the Police Department advised if an officer does not witness a traffic violation, they cannot do anything about it. Ms. Lang added they do appreciate the outstanding job that the Police Department has done in patrolling their subdivision recently. However, she believes the bottom line is that they need stop signs to reduce the speed of the cut-through traffic.
Unidentified Speaker - lives near one of the intersections in Addington and assured Council that the residents will not return in a couple of months to ask that the stop signs be removed because of noise. He noted that he is one of the 80% that agree with the erection of the stop signs. The speaker added that although he agrees with the statements made by Council members who believe that 70% of the motorists will roll through the intersection if stop signs are constructed, he also believes that percentage is better than 100% driving through at thirty five miles per hour.
The speaker noted that the yield signs were placed in the wrong direction. He explained they are erected in a way that only makes certain that the vehicles coming into Addington do not get hit and he believes that is not the purpose of the signs.
George Riegel - 23974 Elizabeth Lane, advised that he lives at the corner of Addington and Elizabeth and is before Council to report that 80% of the residents on Addington support the stop sign proposal. He added that nearly 100% of the residents they contacted are willing to sign the petition, but they have not been able to get signatures because of summer vacations and so forth. Further, Mr. Riegel believes the numbers from the counters will be skewed because they were placed on the road on a summer weekend. Mr. Riegel added that he has also not yet received the Joslyn Road report from Mr. Smith that he requested three weeks ago.
Unidentified Speaker - stated his biggest concern is for his daughter who is hearing impaired. He added that he does not understand why it is taking so long for this issue to be resolved when there is such a large amount of community support for the erection of stop signs in Addington Park. The speaker also believes that the counters are placed in an odd location and that they would provide more accurate counts if they were placed on Addington Lane either north or south of Westmont Village Drive.
Mayor McLallen asked the City Manager to facilitate a meeting with the Addington Park homeowners, Mr. Smith and the traffic consultants. The Mayor then assured the homeowner’s that this is not a unique situation in the community and that the city must develop a city wide standard.
Councilman DeRoche understood that Mr. Smith was going to report back to Council regarding the effectiveness of the yield signs within thirty days and then provide a recommendation about stop signs at that time. Councilman DeRoche assured the residents that this issue would either be addressed administratively or be a part of Council’s agenda at that point.
Councilwoman Mutch believes the residents have raised several intriguing questions (i.e., placement of counters). Consequently, she supports a meeting with the residents so that Mr. Smith can consider their issues when he makes his recommendation.
Councilwoman Lorenzo asked the city’s administration and attorney to look closely at the information provided by West Bloomfield as to liability and the similarities of the two subdivisions.
Lisa Riegel - 23974 Elizabeth Lane, reminded Council that she was the resident to first bring this issue before Council and noted that it is now day twenty six of the thirty days. Ms. Riegel referred to the Michigan Compiled Laws, Sections 256.1-257.7-14, Section 257.606, Local Authorities, Police Powers for Control of Traffic Impounding Vehicles which states: "The provisions of this chapter shall not be considered to prevent local authorities with respect to streets or highways under the jurisdiction of the local authority and within the reasonable exercise of the police power from designating any highway as a through highway and requiring that all vehicles stop before entering or crossing the through highway designating any intersection as a stop intersection and requiring all vehicles to stop at one or more entrances to these intersections." Ms. Riegel advised the Michigan Manual of Uniform Traffic Devices is a guide and is not a law, and is subject to interpretation. Ms. Riegel explained there are human issues that should also be taken into account and although she understands that the city wants to have a consistent policy, there are several subdivisions that do have stop signs (i.e., Dunbarton Pines, Roma Ridge, Willowbrook I, Orchard Hills, Barclay Estates, Deerbrook, Chase Farms and Mockingbird). Ms. Riegel added that Mr. Smith advised her that if it were up to him that he would erect the stop signs. However, he further advised her that he must abide by the guidelines and that the final decision lies with Council. Further, Mr. Smith advised her that he would be grandfathering in the stop signs in these other subdivisions, but that new subdivisions would not be afforded stop signs under these same applications. Ms. Riegel believes this is ludicrous.
Andrea Mohr - Taft Road - Lot 10, is not certain about how the cost for S.A.D. 148, Salow’s Walnut Hill Sanitary Sewer will be divided among the residents. She then asked whether it is feasible to make the $13,200.00 cost firm? Mayor McLallen replied that is the point of tonight’s resolution. However, she added that when the project goes out to bid, that the cost could change somewhat.
Ms. Mohr asked whether it was decided that the project be divided per lot or by frontage? Mayor McLallen understands there are twenty one affected properties and she is uncertain about how the cost is distributed.
Ms. Mohr understands Lots 13, 14 and 15 each have 94.54 feet of frontage with only two sidwell numbers. Therefore, she further understands that the owner is only being assessed for two lots rather than three. Mayor McLallen advised that they will clarify Ms. Mohr’s issue when that matter is before Council tonight.
CONSENT AGENDA (Approval/Removals)
Councilwoman Lorenzo requested that they remove Items H and R.
Mayor McLallen noted that H should be changed from Rod Arroyo to Birchler/Arroyo Associates, Inc.
CM-98-07-225: Moved by Lorenzo, Seconded by Mutch, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve Consent Agenda as amended:
A. Approve Minutes of:
1. Regular City Council Meeting of July 6, 1998
B. Schedule Executive Sessions for:
1. July 20, 1998, immediately following the Regular Council Meeting for the purpose of discussing Property Acquisition and Pending Litigation.
C. Approve revised Agreement between RRRASOC and City of Novi for Regional Recycling Drop-Off Center in Novi.
D. Appointment of Mayor McLallen as MML Voting Delegate and Mayor ProTem Crawford as MML Alternate for the Annual MML Conference in Traverse City, September 9-11, 1998.
E. Acceptance of Streets and Utilities in the Bristol Corners West Subdivision
F. Approval of Drainage Easement and Temporary Construction Easement for property owned by Daniel & Tina Mahlmeister for the Nine Mile Road/Novi Road Intersection Improvements Project.
G. Re-approval of Offer to Purchase Dinser Property for Fire Station #4 in the amount of $115,000.00
I. Approval to purchase millwork for the Council Chamber and Clerk’s Office from Benchmark Cabinetworks in the amount of $4,762.00.
J. Approval to purchase Automatic Gate Openers for the Municipal Garage from AM-POL Doors and Gates Systems in the amount of $4,269.00.
K. Award bid for Vehicles (DPW) through the State of Michigan Joint Purchasing Program from Signature Ford in the amount of $40, 343.00.
L. Award bid for Soft K Copper to Etna Supply in the amount of $18,000.00.
M. Award bid for Tournament Vendor/Sporting Goods to McNish Sporting Goods based on 50% commission based on gross sales.
N. Approval to purchase protective equipment for the Fire Department through Tri-County Joint Purchasing from Appollo Fire Equipment in the amount of $3,029.
O. Rescind Easement between Detroit Edison and City of Novi, Ice Arena Property (Action of 4-06-98)
P. Approval of water main oversizing credit for Bristol Corners West Subdivision in the amount of $53,472.80.
Q. Award of the Nine Mile and Beck Road Intersection Improvements Projects to the low bidder, South Hill Construction Company, in the amount of $384,312.48.
S. Approval of Traffic Control Orders:
1. P98-01: Stop Sign at Turnberry Boulevard, southbound at Eight Mile Road.
2. P98-02: Stop Sign at Brickscape Drive, southbound at Eight Mile Road.
3. P98-03: Stop Sign at Bridge Street, westbound at Meadowbrook Road.
4. P98-04: Stop Sign at Algonquin Drive, eastbound at Novi Road.
5. 98-45: Stop Sign on westbound Endwell at East Lake Drive.
6. 98-46: Stop Sign at Duana Avenue, northbound at East Lake Drive.
7. 98-47: Stop Sign at Duana Avenue, eastbound at East Lake Drive.
8. 98-48: Stop Sign at East Lake Drive, southbound at Thirteen Mile Road.
9. 98-49: Stop Sign at South Lake Court, westbound at West Road.
10. 98-50: Stop Sign at Samuel Linden Court, southbound at Twelve Mile Road.
11. 98-52: Stop Sign at Gardenbrook, eastbound at Meadowbrook Road.
12. 98-53: Stop Sign at Whipple, southbound at Eleven Mile Road.
13. 98-54: Stop Sign at Creek Crossing, northbound at Eleven Mile Road.
14. 98-55: Stop Sign at Sixth Gate, Northbound at Grand River Avenue.
15. 98-57: Stop Sign at Police Station Drive, northbound at Ten Mile Road.
16. 98-58: Stop Sign at Darcy Court, southbound at Nine Mile Road.
17. 98-59: Stop Sign at Amberlund Court, southbound at Nine Mile Road.
18. 98-60: Stop Sign at Anna Maria Court, northbound at Nine Mile Road.
19. 98-61: Stop Sign at Princeton Drive, eastbound at Taft Road.
20. 98-62: Stop Sign at Galway Drive, eastbound at Taft Road.
21. 98-63: Stop Sign at Vero Court, eastbound at Novi Road.
T. Approval of Claims and Accounts - Warrant No. 522
H. Approval of Contract appointing
R. Award of the Taft Road Extension Bridge, Sanitary Sewer, Water Main, and Wetland Mitigation Project to the low bidder, Waterland Trucking Service, Inc., in the amount of $9,393,794.25 and authorization for the Finance Director to transfer $134,100 for the woodlands permit from the Road Funds, and Water & Sewer Fund.
Vote on CM-98-07-225: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, DeRoche, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch, Schmid
MATTERS FOR COUNCIL ACTION - Part I
1. Request for adoption of Resolution # 7 and Confirmation of the Assessment Roll - S.A.D. 148 Salow’s Walnut Hill Sanitary Sewer, project located on Taft Road between Ten and Eleven Mile Roads
Mayor McLallen asked the city attorney to clarify how they apportion the cost of the assessment to the property owners (i.e., frontage, sidwell). Mr. Fried replied benefit determines the cost and the assessor will determine what the benefit is. He explained that the assessor will then come back before Council for approval of the assessment roll.
Mayor McLallen noted that the roll is before them tonight.
Mr. Jerome advised the cost is based upon a tax parcel.
Mayor McLallen reminded Mr. Jerome that an issue about the ownership of three lots configured under two sidwell numbers was raised tonight. Mr. Jerome understands that the resident’s home is situated on one platted lot and the garage is situated on the other and that these two lots are combined under one legal description. Therefore, in order to build on those lots, the owner would have to split the parcel. However, Mr. Jerome noted that they only considered the lots as they exist today for this special assessment district.
Mayor McLallen understands that the approximate $13,320.00 projected cost is amortized over thirty years with annual tax payments of $440.00 for twenty one landowners. Mr. Jerome understands there are twenty two parcels.
Mayor McLallen advised 69% favor the project, 16% are opposed and 14% did not respond; Mr. Jerome agreed.
Councilwoman Mutch understands when a special assessment is based upon benefit that there is only one connection point and if a land owner would like more than one connection, they would have to petition to have two points of access somehow. In order to build two structures on one parcel number, Mr. Jerome advised that the land owner must petition the city assessor to split the property.
At this point, Councilwoman Mutch understands that despite the fact that a landowner would have more than one lot, that they do not really have any greater benefit. However, she further understands that if the landowner would like to build another home that they would have to split the property and petition the assessor for the additional connection. Mr. Jerome disagreed and advised that the benefit is based upon property use today. He explained they spread the cost among the twenty two landowners. However, he further explained that the ordinance does provide to amend a special assessment district later if a property were split.
Councilwoman Mutch asked whether Mr. Jerome can assure Council that someone cannot avoid paying their fair share by having combined lots and that if a land owner wants a future benefit that they must pay for that benefit at some point. Mr. Jerome understands that assurance would occur in a land owner’s petition to split the parcel and that they could amend the special assessment district later.
Historically, Mr. Kriewall advised they assess land owners another unit benefit if they have two or three vacant lots adjacent to the lot on which their home is built; Mr. Fried agreed.
Councilwoman Mutch advised that is not the question. In this case, she understands there is a vacant lot and then two adjacent lots which the owner is using, but is listed with a single sidwell number. Therefore, Councilwoman Mutch understands that the issue raised is that the owner of the three lots is deriving additional benefit by only being considered as two units of the assessment district. Councilwoman Mutch restated that she is trying to get some assurance for the other participants that this owner is not deriving any additional benefits and that he will not pay less than his fair share for the benefit he will derive. In addition, Councilwoman Mutch would like to assure the other land owners that if this land owner would like to derive future benefits, he would then have to petition for a lot split and pay for additional benefits. Mr. Kriewall advised that they are not able to amend the special assessment roll for future benefits.
Councilwoman Mutch asked how can they resolve this issue. It is Mr. Kriewall’s opinion that if those lots can be sold and comply with the zoning ordinance, they must be considered as a separate unit entity for this special assessment district at this point. Mr. Fried agreed and added that the unit must also be a buildable lot.
Mayor McLallen asked whether this issue has been raised during the meetings with the land owners? Mr. Jerome replied this issue was not specifically addressed. He continued by stating that Section 30-27 of the Ordinance provides a provision for divisions of parcels after a special assessment district is created. Mr. Fried advised when a parcel is divided in that manner, the assessment of the parcel is divided by one half and that is unfair.
Based upon the questions raised tonight, Mr. Kriewall recommended that they refer this matter to the assessor and that it be brought back before Council at their next meeting.
Mayor McLallen is concerned that this issue was raised by the homeowner at this point and asked that the owner of the three lots step forward for comment.
Mr. Adams advised he purchased Lots 12, 13 and 14 in 1974; the house and garage were constructed on two of the lots, and there was a vacant lot to the north. Mr. Adams reported that the detached garage is twenty four feet wide and covers almost half the second lot.
Based upon the city’s past policy, Mr. Kriewall believes they should assess the land owner two unit benefits; one for the vacant lot and one for the two lots with the house and the garage.
Because the issue was raised by an affected land owner this evening, Councilwoman Mutch believes it would worth exploring in a limited way. However, Councilwoman Mutch advised she is prepared to support the assessor’s recommendation because of the further explanation provided tonight because she believes it is unlikely that the lot will be split in the future.
Councilman Kramer would support postponing this matter so they can take the time to address this issue adequately.
Councilman Schmid is uncertain whether there is an issue because the land owner is being assessed two units in accordance with the city’s past policy regarding special assessment districts. He added if the lot were split and they built another home, that person must still pay the connection fee. Mr. Kriewall agreed and added that the mitigating factor is that the garage exists on the extra lot as a part of the basic residence and therefore, they should treat it as one unit.
Councilman DeRoche is mainly concerned about the process. He explained that an S.A.D. is initiated by the citizens for their benefit and the city’s role is to help facilitate that benefit. He believes the city should be better informed so that Council can better identify valid issues. Councilman DeRoche is questioning why Council should have to postpone this decision when 69% of the land owner’s have supported the special assessment district. He further questions why should Council be involved in a dispute among neighbors. Councilman DeRoche does not believe Council is fulfilling their purpose if they approve this special assessment under these circumstances. Although he does not want this to happen in the future, Councilman DeRoche will make a motion to postpone consideration of this matter until there is a resolution regarding the issue brought before Council this evening.
CM-98-07-226: Moved by DeRoche, Seconded by Crawford, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To postpone request for adoption of Resolution #7 and Confirmation of the Assessment Roll for S.A.D. 148, Salow’s Walnut Hill Sanitary Sewer project located on Taft Road between Ten and Eleven Mile Roads until August 10, 1998
Councilwoman Lorenzo will support the motion, but agrees this is more of a policy issue. She explained the issue is about how the city defines a benefit unit. Councilwoman Lorenzo believes although a land owner may be using two lots as one, that the owner can remove the garage from the one lot and construct a home. Therefore, she finds merit in the question raised this evening.
Councilman Schmid would like clarification from the city’s attorney. Mr. Fried will discuss this matter with the city’s administration and agreed there is not significant information for Council to make a decision at this point.
Councilwoman Mutch understands there are two sidwell numbers and therefore, the question is whether there are two buildable lots. She further understands the issue for a lot splitting in the future is a separate issue and has nothing to do with the issue before them tonight.
Roll Call Vote on CM-98-07-226: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, DeRoche, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch, Schmid
2. Request for Approval of Local Law Enforcement Block Grant for 1998 - REMOVED
3. Request Adoption of Resolution and approval of Amended Good Faith Offer to Purchase pertaining to property to be acquired from Adell Childrens Trust Fund, et. al., for the Crescent Boulevard Extension Project and the I-96 Sanitary Sewer Crossing Project
CM-98-07-227: Moved by Schmid, Seconded by Kramer, CARRIED: To adopt Resolution and approval of amended Good Faith Offer to Purchase pertaining to property to be acquired from Adell Childrens Trust Fund, et. Al., for the Crescent boulevard Extension Project and the I-96 Sanitary Sewer Crossing Project
Vote on CM-98-07-227: Yeas: McLallen, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch, Schmid
Nays: Crawford, DeRoche
AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION - None
BREAK - From 9:05 p.m. until 9:28 p.m.
MATTERS FOR COUNCIL ACTION - Part II
4. Request for approval of Ordinance Amendment 98.100.22 - amendment to the Sign Ordinance - II Reading
Councilman Schmid asked whether the proposed changes affect the existing sign ordinance for districts other than the TC District? Mr. Wahl advised that the changes primarily address the TC District. However, he believes technical and terminology changes were made in the entire sign ordinance.
Khanh Pham interjected that there were no changes made in the intent or the substance of the sign ordinance.
Councilman Kramer noted there was one change made for the subdivision entrance sign that allows two half signs to be counted as one sign. Mr. Pham noted that the sign size remained the same.
Mr. Fried interjected that they have changed the term of "ground pole" to "ground sign."
Councilman Schmid referred to Item 3 on Page 6, of the comparison draft which reads; "RA Districts may have a business category sign (ground sign or wall sign only be permitted.)" Mr. Fried advised that they changed the language so that it should read: "RA Districts may have a business sign (only ground sign or wall sign shall be permitted)."
Councilman Schmid asked under what circumstances would a ground or wall sign be erected in a residential area? Mr. Pham replied signs are used in RA under Special Land Use (i.e., churches, antique barn on Eight Mile Road).
Mr. Pham referred to Item 2 on Page 6 and advised that it should read; "sign or wall sign" instead of "sign and wall sign"
Councilman Schmid asked if the language under Item 1 on Page 8 is referring to the TC-1 District; Mr. Pham agreed.
Councilman Schmid asked whether one hundred square foot for a ground sign is correct? Mr. Pham advised that is the existing language.
Councilman Schmid referred to Page 9, a. and asked if they are referring to signs for each business? Mr. Pham advised Page 9 refers to districts other than TC-1 and added that the text for TC-1 begins on Page 11.
Councilman Schmid understands they added two more stories for buildings in the TC-1 District; Mr. Pham agreed.
Councilman Schmid asked for clarification for the width of projecting signs under b. on the bottom of Page 14. Mr. Necci replied that they can only be three feet wide and must be located between eight and one half, and twelve foot from the sidewalk. Mr. Necci added that the signs can be ten square feet in area.
Part of the confusion for Councilwoman Lorenzo was that the ordinance called similar things by different names. She explained a kiosk is really a directory sign except that it is a free standing pedestal instead of on an entry wall or on a window; Mr. Necci agreed.
Councilwoman Lorenzo asked what is the difference between a ground sign and a directory sign? Mr. Pham advised a ground sign provides the name of a business or the business center. He added that a business center sign can be a wall sign or a ground sign and noted ground signs are just different types of signs (i.e., projection, wall, kiosk).
Councilwoman Lorenzo asked if a ground sign would name a mall, its tenants or both? Mr. Pham replied that it could be both. Councilwoman Lorenzo understands that they have three definitions of the same thing in different forms.
Councilwoman Lorenzo added they also have various square footages that are allowed for each of the signs; Mr. Pham agreed.
Councilwoman Lorenzo asked why are there different sizes? Mr. Pham replied that the intent was to permit sign variations in the TC District. He explained if a tenant had a wall sign and a second level projection sign, then the tenant could deduct that from the total quota of square footage of signs available. In addition, Mr. Pham added they believe it also looks better aesthetically.
In regard to the placement of a kiosk pedestal sign on Page 13, Councilwoman Lorenzo understands that the minimum clearance for handicap access is five feet on all sides; Mr. Necci agreed. He added he believes it reinforces the idea of the kiosk being a free standing element and that it must be five feet away from any obstructions. Mr. Fried believes the language is clear.
Councilwoman Lorenzo would like to know the height and square footage of the Arbor Drug kiosk in Northville? Although they measured the kiosks in Northville, Mr. Necci does not recall that height. Councilwoman Lorenzo would appreciate having that information.
Mr. Necci reported there is a photo board in the Planning Department that includes "sticky notes" describing the square footage. However, he is uncertain whether those notes are still on the board. He added that they did not do that for the pedestal type signs and that it only includes wall signs.
Councilwoman Lorenzo understands they only permit kiosk signs in TC and TC-1 Districts, and they are subject to the approval of the newly established Design Review Committee; Mr. Necci agreed.
Councilwoman Lorenzo is concerned with a body other than Council approving how many signs can be in a certain location because she believes Council is accountable to the citizenry for signs in the community. Mr. Pham advised that the Design Review Committee was established to review design issues. However, he noted that the number of signs are already limited in the ordinance and they will only use the Design Manual as a guideline for review. Councilwoman Lorenzo asked whether they specify that in the language; Mr. Fried advised they specify it on Page 19, e. Mr. Necci added that the size and spacing of the signs is found in the text of the ordinance, whereas the manual simply addresses design oriented issues.
Councilwoman Lorenzo is concerned about how many signs will be constructed in a certain area. Mr. Pham referred to Item 4 on Page 13 of the comparison draft and read; "Placement and number of kiosk signs shall only be permitted in TC and TC-1, and are subject to approval of the Design Review Committee." In terms of the placement and number, Mr. Pham advised that is the one area that the Design Review Committee has authorization. That is Councilwoman Lorenzo’s concern; she explained the Design Review Committee has the discretion to the placement and number of kiosks allowed in any development in the TC and TC-1 Districts and restated she believes that decision should be made by Council.
Councilwoman Lorenzo moved to approve Ordinance Amendment 98.100.22 subject to amending the ordinance to provide language that would provide Council with the authority to approve the placement and the number of kiosk signs in TC-1 and TC Districts.
Councilwoman Mutch asked whether the intention of the motion is that the city does not establish a Design Review Committee; Councilwoman Lorenzo advised her intent is that the committee makes a recommendation to Council and that Council makes the final decision.
Mayor McLallen advised that the motion died due to lack of support.
Councilwoman Mutch supports Councilwoman Lorenzo’s comments about the confusion regarding different terminology for signs that describe function and structure.
CM-98-07-228: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Mutch, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve request for the approval of Ordinance Amendment 998.100.22 - Amendment to the Sign Ordinance - II Reading
Councilwoman Lorenzo will reluctantly support the motion.
Mayor McLallen noted that Council can continue to refine this ordinance.
Vote on CM-98-07-228: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, DeRoche, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch, Schmid
5. Consideration of 1998 Roadway Bond Program and Potential Projects List
Mr. Kriewall reported that the city’s road needs have always been very obvious. He reminded Council that they have had three major road bonding issues over the years in addition to a one mil road initiative in the 70's. Further, Mr. Kriewall believes they have done a lot as a community to foster road improvements and noted Novi did not have a mile of paved city road in the community when it was first incorporated. He added that Meadowbrook Road from Nine to Ten Mile Road was the first road to be paved in 1973 as a result of a citizen’s road improvement committee. Mr. Kriewall advised that Novi’s road needs were discussed during the past budget sessions and that resulted in the recommendation that the city seek a road bonding program in the near future. Mr. Kriewall discussed the difficulties they are having under the current road program and consequently since March, they are less comfortable today with bringing a road program forward this November because they have not really expended the monies that were already voted by the community.
Mr. Kriewall continued by stating that although they agree the needs are still there, that those needs should be met by increased state and county participation. He explained if they get too far ahead of the flow of federal and state funding as the county parcels it out, a larger burden shifts to the local taxpayers for road improvements. Mr. Kriewall added that Novi is on the verge of additional road funding because of the onset of development on Twelve Mile Road (i.e., Husky Corporation). Further, the Haggerty Road corridor development may also provide additional funding because of some potential development that may occur in that area. Consequently, Mr. Kriewall suggested that a road improvement bond program be proposed in special election in the spring or in the fall election of 1999.
Mayor McLallen asked when must they provide the language for the proposed bond for the November election? Ms. Bartholomew advised that they must submit approved language to the County Clerk’s office by August 11, 1998.
Councilman Schmid advised his position has not changed and that he believes Novi should move forward so they can stay ahead of road improvements. Councilman Schmid believes Novi’s roads are the single most critical issue. Further, Councilman Schmid does not anticipate a great influx of federal or state monies coming to the city other than that which is already designated or in the process of being designated. Councilman Schmid asked that they seriously consider placing a bond issue on the November ballot.
Councilman Schmid asked whether it is a good idea to have matching funds for grants? Mr. Kriewall replied that most of the projects are in a long que. He explained the process to request funds for improvements for the major county roads can take as long as five to six years because they must initiate the engineering, the right-of-way acquisition, and finally the construction phasing and funding of those projects. Mr. Kriewall noted Novi is already in the que for Novi Road and Twelve Mile, and they already know that they do not need the funding for another two to three years because it is coming through so slowly at the county level. He added although they qualify for funding, the real problem is that there is inadequate state and county funding for roads. Mr. Kriewall further added that they can use the One Mil Road Fund or current road fund for the smaller grants that they have received (i.e., Nine Mile and Novi Road intersection). However, he noted they are unable to acquire the large amounts of money required to improve a mile road. Mr. Kriewall does not believe they are missing any opportunities at this time.
Councilman Schmid asked whether Mr. Kriewall is suggesting that Novi will not need additional road money in the next two to four years? Mr. Kriewall replied he is saying that they will need to move forward with a road bond issue some time in 1999 because they will have expended or at least committed most of the funding from the current road bonding program by that time.
Councilman Schmid understands that the present bond funds have been appropriated for specific roads; Mr. Kriewall agreed.
Councilman Schmid asked how much money is still available? Mr. Nowicki has not done a cost accounting for the entire program, but advised he can provide a status summary on the entire 1996 Road Bond Program. He reported they are recommending that the award for the Taft Road Extension be awarded tonight; Nine Mile and Beck passed on tonight’s Consent Agenda; Nine Mile and Novi Road is a state project because of the Category A Grant (August bid - late fall/early winter construction); Meadowbrook Road is underway (preconstruction meeting scheduled in the next week or two); Crescent Boulevard has been delayed because of property negotiations and acquisition; and Eleven Mile and Beck Road is going to be tied with the Wixom Road and Eleven Mile Road Sewer Project (permission to seek bids in August). Mr. Nowicki continued by stating they included $2.5M in the 1996 Road Bond Program for the subdivision road improvements and most of it should be spent by this year. Further, the Concrete Program is almost complete and all that is left is the final phase of the Bituminous Program which is currently delayed because of some insurance requirements of the contractor.
Councilman Schmid understands the city has spent all of the money. Mr. Nowicki advised that they will spend all of the bond program proceeds by the end of 1999.
CM-98-07-229: Moved by Schmid, Seconded by DeRoche, FAILED: To place a bond issue for road improvements on the November 1998 ballot
Councilman DeRoche understands that the process for road improvements is long and therefore, he believes it would be a mistake to pass up an opportunity to put them a year ahead of schedule for future road improvements. Further, Councilman DeRoche believes the citizens will want the opportunity to vote this November if the city can structure projects that will improve traffic conditions in Novi.
Councilman Kramer agrees that the city needs to address Novi’s traffic issues. However, as he looks at the information before him, he does not believe they are ready to move forward. He explained that the reports from DPW, JCK & Associates and Birchler/Arroyo do not coincide, and added that the projects are not prioritized. Councilman Kramer’s priorities with the next road bond would be to first resolve public traffic problems. Secondly, he would recommend that they repair safety problems (i.e., grade crossings). And finally, he would suggest that they provide projects to support development. Councilman Kramer added he believes the smaller projects (i.e., intersection improvements) in the Birchler/Arroyo proposal may have more impact than some of the larger projects. Councilman Kramer restated that he would like to take the time to prioritize the projects and he does not see that happening before August 11, 1998.
Councilwoman Mutch asked what projects are unlikely to receive outside funding. Mr. Nowicki responded with the following:
Beck Rd. - Possible Federal Funding
Crescent Blvd. Extension - Possible Category A Grant
Main Street West - Possible Economic Development Grant
Delmont Dr. & Dinser Dr. - Local Funding
Garfield Rd. - Local Funding
Grand River Ave. - Possible Grant Funding
Meadowbrook Rd. - Possible Grant Funding
Nine Mile Rd. - Local Funding
Eleven/Twelve Mile Rd. (crossings) - Grant
Councilwoman Mutch believes there are certain projects that the community must still fund locally whether they do them now or later. She believes they should know what they are so they can present them to the voters. She further believes any proposed road program will be dependent upon the voters in those particular areas to persuade the rest of the community to support the funding by virtue of their vote in an election.
Councilwoman Mutch asked Mr. Nowicki to provide a brief history of the Dinser/Delmont area for the benefit of the residents still in the audience. Mr. Nowicki reported that they originally designed the paving of Wixom Road to go run straight through and they never intended for it to jog through what is now Dinser and Delmont or that it be a part of the 1990 Road Bond Program. However, Mr. Nowicki continued by stating that they did have Dinser and Delmont as part of their list for the 1996 Road Bond Program, but there was not support from the area and was subsequently removed from consideration.
Councilwoman Mutch also recalled that the residents were opposed to the paving in 1990 because they did not want the additional traffic that will now travel on Wixom Road. However, she added that she also believes that positions change and now this is the next phase of the cycle.
Councilwoman Mutch advised that she strongly supported a road bond for the November ballot during budget discussions and added that she also strongly believes that the city should take advantage when outside money is available because of the outrageous costs involved. Consequently, when the bond is on the ballot, Councilwoman Mutch would like to see that it is successful and to be successful, she believes they need more time to educate the public, identify the specific projects and establish priorities. Therefore, Councilwoman Mutch would support placing this issue on a spring ballot.
Mayor McLallen shares the concerns raised tonight. She explained that the roads will never be finished and that the costs will continue to escalate. Further, she would also like to make certain that they maximize locally generated dollars. She added that she is equally concerned about going to the voters in November without first delivering some of the current outstanding projects and therefore, she would support placing this on the ballot in the spring.
Mayor McLallen also supports the suggestion that they prioritize the locally used projects (i.e., Beck Road) and that it is outrageous to suggest that the cost should be assumed solely by the residents of Novi. She further stated that she would have difficulty asking the residents to widen Grand River to the west when the Oakland County recently widened it. Therefore, she believes they need more time to thoroughly review the different projects before bringing them before the voters.
Councilman Schmid agrees that they should look at the road needs in terms of where improvements will directly benefit the citizens. Further, Councilman Schmid will not support a bond issue in the spring because of the low voter turnout.
Because everyone has a vested interest in road issues, Councilwoman Mutch believes there will be a large turnout in the spring.
Councilwoman Mutch asked whether they will include the specific projects on the ballot? Mr. Kriewall advised that they do not identify specific projects; they just list a specific dollar amount. However, Mr. Kriewall noted they do prepare an approved priority list of projects set by Council in order to price the bond issue.
Councilwoman Mutch understands that the pricing is based upon the money that they know they can get and not based on the money they might get. Mr. Kriewall agreed and added that the county funding process is currently slow because of the lack of funding. Consequently, they can almost wait to qualify the project and quote on it two years later without compromising the funding.
Councilwoman Mutch does not want to be so far ahead of the funding process by proposing projects that they would end up funding entirely themselves.
Councilman DeRoche would propose that they take a dollar amount and maximize it the best as they can to resolve some of the traffic issues in Novi. Therefore, Councilman DeRoche completely endorses using the road bond funding mechanism to support easing traffic concerns.
Roll Call Vote on CM-98-07-229: Yeas: DeRoche, Schmid
Nays: Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo,
CM-98-07-230: Moved by Kramer, Seconded by Crawford, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To schedule Council Work Sessions after Administration has prepared a report to prepare the 1999 Road Bond proposal for a possible Special Election in the Spring of 1999
Vote on CM-98-07-230: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, DeRoche, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch, Schmid
6. Consideration of Police Station Bonding Proposal
Mayor McLallen understands that this is essentially the same proposal that failed the last time; Mr. Klaver agreed.
Mayor McLallen understands the estimated bond proposal is approximately $3.3M to bring the police station in conformance with ADA requirements, for capital improvement repairs and for alterations to the existing building. She added according to information in the packet that the cost to reconstruct the entire police station would amount to approximately $8.0M.
Councilman Kramer believes the tour of the police station was very educational. He explained although the building looks well kept and modern from the outside, the reality is that the building needs much work. Councilman Kramer believes the improvements will provide improved efficiency in operation of the department because there are many areas in the building that are not particularly functional at this time. In addition, Councilman Kramer stated the equipment in the building is not new and it appeared to him to be well used. Councilman Kramer believes they must inform the voters about what is needed to improve the building and he asked if they are prepared to do that. He added if they are prepared to move on that, then he is prepared to support a motion to put this issue before the voters this fall.
Councilwoman Mutch understood the improvement costs would be closer to $4.0M because of the delays. Mr. Klaver advised this is essentially the same program brought forward by the citizen’s committee and noted that they have updated the costs to reflect inflation. Further, Mr. Klaver noted that in some cases minor items have continued to deteriorate and therefore, they have been added to the program since they developed the original program four years ago.
Councilwoman Mutch understands the $3.3M is an updated figure; Mr. Klaver agreed and reminded Council that the original amount was $2.5M.
Councilwoman Mutch asked at what point would the city be faced with the possibility of constructing a new building? Mr. Klaver understands that Chief Shaeffer is proposing to restore the structural integrity of the building for occupation through 2030. Mr. Klaver noted that the building is almost twenty years old at this time and he does not believe a fifty year building is unrealistic unless they do not properly address some of the problems they are currently experiencing.
Councilwoman Mutch understands they would have to reconstruct the building in thirty years because of deterioration and not because they have outgrown the building; Mr. Klaver believes that is difficult to say at this time.
Councilwoman Mutch agrees there is a need to address the needed repairs if the police station is to function properly.
Mayor ProTem Crawford believes when they designed and constructed the building twenty years ago there was no consideration given for the American Disability Act. Further, there was no consideration given to the possibility of hiring female officers in terms of locker rooms, restrooms and so forth. Mayor ProTem Crawford believes the design of the police building would be entirely different if it were to be designed today. Mayor ProTem Crawford added that he believes they must repair the structure immediately because it may be beyond repair in five years and therefore, he would support putting this issue on the November ballot.
Councilwoman Lorenzo agreed with comments made in support of putting this issue before the voters. Further, she reminded Council that during budget discussions they realized that the building is also violating Novi’s own fire codes.
CM-98-07-231: Moved by Lorenzo, Seconded by Crawford, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To place the $3.3M Police Station Bonding Proposal on the November 1998 ballot
Councilman Schmid will support the motion, but disagrees with some of the comments made about the design of the current building. Councilman Schmid explained that the building was built twenty years ago by some of the best engineers in the area. Although he agrees the building may now be outdated, he believes it is not because of bad choices made by the Council when it was originally constructed.
Councilwoman Mutch clarified that she believes that the building was poorly designed for how it functions today and not for how it functioned then. Councilwoman Mutch also wanted to comment on the inadequacy of the holding cells because of the problems the city is currently experiencing that they were not experiencing at the time they constructed the building (i.e., separating juveniles from more serious offenders).
Mayor ProTem Crawford understands that the bonding language will come back before Council for approval; Mr. Kriewall agreed and noted it will come before Council at their first meeting in August.
Mayor ProTem Crawford understands that the cost estimate may not be $3.3M; Mr. Kriewall advised they will also take another look at the cost and added that the city’s bonding attorney will review the language.
Mayor ProTem Crawford asked if they will list the specific improvements in the language? Mr. Kriewall understands that the language will be general, but added that they will provide information about the specific road improvements to the voters.
Although the police station is nicely painted and clean, Mayor McLallen believes they could have avoided some of the improvements if the city had regularly maintained the building. Further, the Mayor is concerned about including parking signs and hardware in a bonding proposal. She explained she is uncertain about whether that is the proper place to address those kinds of repairs. Mayor McLallen believes that Council should consider a policy for maintenance bonds for all of the city’s municipal buildings to avoid these types of bond requests in the future.
Mayor McLallen asked where did the $160 per square foot figure for new construction come from; she understands commercial construction in Novi is currently at $100 per square foot.
Vote on CM-98-07-231: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, DeRoche, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch, Schmid
CONSENT AGENDA REMOVALS FOR COUNCIL ACTION: (Items listed on the Consent Agenda which have been removed for discussion and/or action)
H. Approval of Contract appointing
Councilwoman Lorenzo asked whether Mr. Arroyo planned to hire a certified traffic engineer? Mr. Arroyo replied they are currently in the process of adding a certified traffic engineer to their staff. He reported they made an offer to one out of state candidate who decided not to relocate. He continued by stating that they will continue to keep Council informed of their efforts and that they hope to hire someone in the near future.
CM-98-07-232: Moved by Lorenzo, Seconded by DeRoche, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve contract appointing Birchler/Arroyo Associates, Inc. as the City of Novi’s Planning Consultants
Vote on CM-98-07-232: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, DeRoche, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch, Schmid
R. Award of the Taft Road Extension Bridge, Sanitary Sewer, Water Main, and Wetland Mitigation Project to the low bidder, Waterland Trucking Service, Inc., in the amount of $9,393,794.25 and authorization for the Finance Director to transfer $134,100 for the woodlands permit from the Road Funds, and Water & Sewer Fund
Councilwoman Lorenzo asked whether Waterland Trucking Service, Inc. is going to construct and design themselves or subcontract the mitigation project? Dave Potter of JCK & Associates understands that Waterland Trucking intends to construct the wetland mitigation themselves. He explained they have been previously involved in similar wetland construction projects (i.e., wetland mitigation on Garfield Road).
Councilwoman Lorenzo understands that the DEQ usually has a list of potential subcontractors for this type of work; Mr. Potter agreed and added that the DEQ has compiled a list of wetland specialists or consultants that can be contracted to design or construct a wetland. Mr. Potter advised that in this case the wetlands were designed by JCK, and accepted by the State through the MDQ permit process. Mr. Potter advised that they believe Waterland Trucking Service is capable of constructing this wetland project.
Councilwoman Lorenzo understands that JCK designed the mitigation and Waterland Trucking Service is going to construct it; Mr. Potter agreed.
Councilwoman Lorenzo asked how much experience does Waterland Trucking Service have in constructing wetland mitigation? She explained that she would like to know what kind of track record they have because she believes wetland mitigation is part science and part art, and if an inexperienced firm does this type of work they could end up with a ballfield instead of a wetland. Mr. Potter agreed and added they recommended a two year maintenance period instead of a one year period because of the proposed bridge and wetland mitigation. Mr. Potter explained once a project is completed, the city will hold a two year maintenance bond that the contractor submits so that if a problem arises, the contractor must correct the problem.
Councilwoman Lorenzo asked whether they should also have a monitoring process in place? Mr. Potter advised the MDQ requires that the city comply with a five year monitoring period.
Councilwoman Lorenzo asked whether the contractor has any other experience other than the Garfield Road site? Mr. Potter does not know of another specific site, but added that JCK did make several inquiries and they are satisfied that Waterland Trucking can construct the wetland mitigation.
CM-98-07-233: Moved by Lorenzo, Seconded by Crawford, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve the award of the Taft Road Extension, Bridge, Sanitary Sewer, Water Main, and Wetland Mitigation Project to the low bidder, Waterland Trucking Service, Inc., in the amount of $9,393,794.25 and authorize the Finance Director to transfer $134,100 for the woodland’s permit from the Road Funds, and Water & Sewer Fund
Vote on CM-98-07-233: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, DeRoche, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch, Schmid
COMMITTEE REPORTS - None
MAYOR AND COUNCIL ISSUES
1. Novi Township Sanitary Sewer Update - Kriewall
Mr. Kriewall reported a meeting is scheduled for Wednesday morning (August 22, 1998) and noted that he will report back to Council after the meeting
Mayor McLallen requested that the Clerk’s office advertise for candidates due to resignations by members of those boards.
CM-98-07-234: Moved by Mutch, Seconded by Lorenzo, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve direct City Clerk to advertise for candidates to appoint to the Parks & Recreation Commission and the Library Board
Vote on CM-98-07-234: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, DeRoche, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch, Schmid
2. Hazardous Waste Day - Lorenzo
As part of their budget approval, Councilwoman Lorenzo recalled that Council approved a Hazardous Waste Day for the City of Novi and she asked whether they have given any thought about how the city will facilitate this event? Mr. Kriewall advised that the DPW Superintendent has been meeting with the waste company and they have established September 12, 1998 as a tentative date for Hazardous Waste Day.
Mr. Nowicki added they have also been working with the Public Information Director to develop a video for cable television and a P.R. campaign for the appropriate newspapers.
Because the city has less than six months to assemble their application, Councilwoman Lorenzo asked what is the current status of the program? Mr. Nowicki reported that the application is still in progress and advised that they have until November 1998 to submit the application. He noted that the application is voluntary and that it is not the NPDES application, but that it is just the voluntary coverage for storm water.
Mr. Nowicki then advised that there are several provisions. He explained the first is a Public Information Program in terms of education. He advised they received a grant for that from the RPO and noted that they also received the signed contracts a couple of weeks ago. Mr. Nowicki continued by stating that he developed the RFP for that program and they will bring that matter before Council for approval to solicit proposals. Mr. Nowicki advised that the Illicit Storm Water Connection Program is another component and he reported they have submitted a grant application for that. Mr. Nowicki understands they will be awarded that grant so they may also proceed with that program.
Councilwoman Lorenzo asked when can they anticipate that announcement? Mr. Nowicki believes they will receive notification very soon.
Councilwoman Lorenzo asked when will the money be awarded? Mr. Nowicki understands that it sometimes takes a year.
Mr. Nowicki continued by stating that although they have the Storm Water Master Plan, they are updating it at this time and noted that they are proceeding fairly well with it. Mr. Nowicki reported that a Storm Water Pollution Demonstration Program is the last component and reported that they have received a grant to do that. He concluded by stating they are well on track.
5. Ordinance Review Committee Replacement - Mutch
Although Councilwoman Mutch found this a worthwhile committee to be involved with, she has recently found that she has been unable to attend the meetings regularly. She added that she would be willing to serve as an alternate instead of serving as a member of this committee.
Councilwoman Lorenzo volunteered to serve as a member and Mayor ProTem Crawford offered to serve as the committee’s alternate member.
Mr. Kriewall reported that the Building Authority met today with the architects, the contractor, and the city’s architectural support representatives regarding the ice arena and they were able to come to an agreement about how to correct the walls that have been moving inward. Mr. Kriewall reported they decided to pour some footings approximately thirty feet out from the walls, put steel rods through the ground, through the wall and attach tension bolts. He noted they would then remove the back fill from the wall to crank the wall back into its original position. He continued by stating they will cast the metal rods in concrete for long term durability, waterproof the building where the bores were made for the iron rods and then back fill the walls with appropriate material (i.e., sand or a granular material).
Mr. Kriewall reported the problem with the walls were attributed to a minimal design that met the design criteria for what it was suppose to do, but when they back filled the walls, the heavy soils created an undo pressure on the building wall and consequently, moved the walls in approximately two inches to the point where they were actually resting against the steel structure. He noted that the wall is strictly a retaining wall and the steel structure has no real physical connection with the wall itself.
Mr. Kriewall understands that the entire building must be backfilled again. He explained all of the backfill around the entire building on three sides must be removed and replaced with a granular backfill. He continued by stating that the north and south walls may not be a problem because they have only deflected approximately one quarter of an inch. However, he noted the westerly wall, which is the deep wall, must be moved back as much as two inches. Mr. Kriewall reported that the builder is prepared to begin this work within the next four to five days, and they believe they can still meet the August 23, 1998 opening date. Mr. Kriewall added that a representative from the hockey association attended today’s proceedings.
Mr. Kriewall advised Council that there are several things that still must be done. He explained the city is requesting that there be at least an independent structural engineer review so that they can make certain that whatever they propose will be a permanent fix. Further, Mr. Kriewall reported there was discussion today about asking for an extended warranty on the walls. Mr. Kriewall noted that the city’s attorney also attended today’s meeting.
Councilman Schmid asked who is paying for the additional costs? Mr. Kriewall believes that issue is debatable at this point. He understands it is the builder’s position that as long as they do not exceed the guaranteed maximum price for the building, that these costs may be attributable to the project. He noted that the city’s attorney has been directed to review the project from the city’s view point and provide an interpretation. Mr. Kriewall believes the goal is to move forward in the right direction on the agreed upon fix and then determine who is responsible for the additional costs once they have resolved the problem.
Councilman Schmid asked whether they have paid everyone? Mr. Kriewall advised there is still approximately $1.5M outstanding on this project and added that there are several other costs that they are also disputing at this time.
Mr. Kriewall reported that Mr. Arroyo advised today that the Novi Development Review Guide Book received the honor of winning the top MSPO planning award for 1998. He added that there will be a ceremony held at the Grand Hotel to which Council is invited to attend and receive the award.
In response to the Midas Muffler tree removal issue, Mr. Kriewall advised that Council received a report from Mr. Pargoff in regard to what took place at that site. He noted Administration is still investigating that particular issue and added although the city is dissatisfied with the tree removal, Mr. Pargoff has reported that not only were the trees diseased, they were also included in the Detroit Edison cutting program. Further, Mr. Kriewall reported that Mr. Pargoff is currently working with Midas to recover some of the screening in that area and that the city also plans to involve the city attorney in this issue. He added that they will provide further information to Council at their next meeting.
In regard to the earlier discussion about the proposed S.A.D on tonight’s agenda, Mr. Kriewall advised that during tonight’s break Mr. Jerome reported that he discussed doing a front footage assessment with the affected homeowners during the informal meetings and the homeowners ruled out that option. Consequently, they ended up with the unit benefit approach as proposed by the city’s assessor and within that there is an anomaly as to whether a lot should be assessed dually or singularly. Mr. Kriewall believes this was a healthy discussion because it is strictly a policy issue and added that the assessor is doing the best that he can when determining how S.A.D.’s should be assessed. Further, Mr. Kriewall reported that he will direct the city’s attorney to prepare an overview to meet with the assessor. Mr. Kriewall predicted that this will probably come back to Council as being a policy decision on Council’s part in terms of whether they should address this situation as a double or singular benefit. Mr. Kriewall reminded Council one purpose of a public hearing is for the public to bring forth some of their issues.
Councilwoman Mutch asked whether there is a problem that these comments were made during Audience Participation and after the actual Public Hearing. Mr. Kriewall believes that will not pose a problem; Mr. Fried agreed.
Councilwoman Mutch asked why was a sidewalk only constructed on the Ten Mile Road side of the MetroCell site? Mr. Arroyo will have to look into that issue, but added that he recalled that there may have been a problem with having an appropriate amount of right-of-way on Novi Road.
Mayor McLallen noted that same situation has developed at Nine Mile Road and Meadowbrook with the construction of the new homes. Mr. Arroyo recalled that they have constructed those homes on parcels that would not be part of a subdivision and he believes they may not be required to construct sidewalks. He noted it is possible that one of them has voluntarily constructed the sidewalks. Mayor McLallen disagreed and reported that the owner has contacted the city to ask why they require her to construct sidewalks when her neighbors are not. Mayor McLallen asked Administration to look into this matter.
Councilman Schmid does not understand why they would require the owner to construct a sidewalk and that it would be a sidewalk to nowhere.
Councilman Kramer understands that the Mayor indicated that the city should be considering building maintenance bonds and wondered if they could add that to the Building Authority’s Charter? Mr. Kriewall reported that the city cannot levy additional millage for that and that they are generally used as a financing vehicle where revenue is involved (i.e., ice arena).
Councilwoman Mutch asked for further explanation about the use of asphalt for the driveways in the Bristol Corners project. Mr. Kriewall stated that is normally a builder or homeowner’s option; the city has never regulated driveways.
ATTORNEY’S REPORTS - None
1. Letter from NLC, Re: National Municipal Policy and Separate Resolutions.
2. Letter from Fried, Watson & Bugbee to Kathleen Mutch, Re: Planning Commission Appointments.
3. Letter from Andrew Mutch, Re: Resignation from Library Board.
4. Letter from Sarah Gray, Re: Andris Re-Zoning (Leudtke Affidavit attached)
5. Letter from James Korte to City Council, Re: Parkland Acquisition
6. Letter from James Korte to Matthew Quinn, Re: Clients
7. Letter from Sarah Gray to City Council, Re: Arnold Fisher Gift Property & Ivy Leaf Walk
8. Letter from City of Ferndale to Federal Communications Commission, Re: Paxson Communications Corporation - Petition for Special Relief.
9. Meeting Notification Novi Chamber of Commerce, Re: Grand River Widening.
There being no further business before City Council, the meeting was adjourned at 11:32 p.m.
Mayor City Clerk
Date Approved: August 10, 1998