View Agenda for this meeting



MONDAY, APRIL 5, 1999, AT 7:30 PM


Mayor McLallen called the meeting to order at 7:31 p.m.




ROLL CALL: Mayor McLallen, Mayor ProTem Crawford, Council Members DeRoche (absent/excused), Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch, Schmid




Mr. Kriewall requested that Council add Scheduling of an Executive Session after Tonight’s Meeting to Discuss Property Acquisition as Item 3 under Matters for Council Action, Part I.


CM-99-03-080: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Lorenzo, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve Agenda as amended


Vote on CM-99-03-080: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch,


Nays: None




1. Council E-mail Update – Lauri Loechli


Ms. Loechli advised e-mail has been available to Council for several months. However, she added those members who have not spoken with her and do not have e-mail available at their homes need to contact her so they can receive their mail at City Hall on the computer located behind the Council Chamber. Ms. Loechli reported the city’s mail currently comes through a company in Auburn Hills and is one of the things they would like to change because the e-mail is considered to be a long distance call.


Councilman Schmid asked what does the long distance cost amount to? Ms. Loechli replied they are submitting bids for the city to contract their own IP provider tomorrow and should reduce the cost by $500 to $700 per month.


Councilman Kramer asked when can they anticipate having their own line? Ms. Loechli understands the city’s Web site should be ready in May and she would be able to move forward sometime in June.


Ms. Loechli added Council can e-mail all their members at one time by calling out "councilmbrs."







Debbie Bundoff – Twelve Mile Road, stated in regard to Item 2 under Matters for Council Action that she would like to make her views very clear. She does not believe enough has been done to resolve the amount of flooding that is occurring in that area. Ms. Bundoff suggested that a basic trench or creek would allow for the flooding to travel back to where it used to be and therefore, may allow the wetlands that have been created over the last couple years to subside so there will not be such a problem at the south end where they need to have the road narrowed.


CONSENT AGENDA (Approval/Removals)


Councilwoman Lorenzo requested that Council remove Items A. 3., Q, and R.


Councilman Schmid requested that Council remove Items C and G.


CM-99-03-081: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Kramer, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve Consent Agenda as amended:


  1. Approve Minutes of:
  2. 1. Special Meeting of March 11, 1999

    2. Regular Meeting of March 15, 1999

    4. Special Joint Meeting, with the Library Board, of March 29, 1999

    5. Special Meeting of March 29, 1999

  3. Approval of Ordinance No. 99-103.8, An Ordinance to amend Section 12-48 of the Novi Code of Ordinances to clarify the requirements for lawn installation – II Reading and Adoption

D. Approval of American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers License Agreement.

E. Approval to solicit construction bids for 1999 Bituminous and Concrete Paving Programs.

F. Approval to solicit construction bids for Taft Road Resurfacing Project – Nine to Ten Mile Road.

H. Approval of a Grading Permit for property purchased by Gary Roberts from John DeMattia via land contract for the Taft Road Extension, Bridge, Sanitary Sewer, Water Main and Wetland Mitigation Project.

I. Award bid for Calcium Chloride to South Huron Industrial, Inc., the low bidder, based on unit cost (DPW).

J. Award bid for Street Sweeping to G & M Enterprises, the low bidder, in the amount of $35,055 per year (DPW).

K. Award bid for Tree Purchasing (Forestry) as follows:

  • 1A to Discount Tree in the amount of $4,500 and to Christensen’s in the amount of $164,319.25.
  • Street Tree Planting 2A to D & J Lawn & Snow, Inc. in the amount of $83,050.
  • Twelve Mile Planting 3A to Davey Commercial Grounds Management in the amount of $44,570.
  • Tree Replanting 5 to Michigan Turf, Inc. in the amount of $9,810.

L. Approval to purchase one (1) John Deere mower through the State of Michigan Joint Purchasing program from Weingartz Supply in the amount of $14,930. (DPW)

M. Award bid for Towing Contract to Keford Collision, the low qualified bidder meeting the specifications, based on unit pricing.

N. Award bid for softballs to Dee’s Sports Shop, in the amount of $7,781.06 as the low bidder (Parks & Recreation)

O. Approval to accept the Woodlands Conservation Easement from Husky Injection Molding Systems, Inc., SP 98-35D

P. Re-approval of COAM Labor Contract

S. Approval of Claims and Accounts – Warrant No 541




A. Approve Minutes of:

3. Special Meeting of March 18, 1999

C. Approval of Zoning Ordinance Text Amendment 18.149, An ordinance to amend the definition of "density" contained in Section 201 of Ordinance No. 97-18, as amended, the City of Novi Zoning Ordinance, to add the definition of "net site area" to Section 201 to amend Section 501 of said Ordinance to include shared elderly housing as a principal permitted use, to amend Section 601 of said Ordinance to include independent and congregate elderly living as a principal permitted use, to amend Section 602, subsections 1101.3 and 2301.3 to update housing terminology as defined in Section 201, to amend the RM-1 Multifamily Residential District designation within the schedule limiting height, bulk, density and area contained within Section 2400 of Ordinance No. 97-18 to provide minimum floor area requirements for an efficiency room in a RM-1 unit, to amend the dwelling unit density regulations found in the Schedule of Regulations contained within Section 2400 of said Ordinance, to amend footnote (d) in Section 2400 to address the unique needs of elderly housing in Multiple Family Districts and to delete Subsection 1903.12 – II Reading and Adoption

G. Approval of ERIM International as the RPO GIS/Public Awareness Project consultant and authorization for the Attorneys to prepare an Agreement reflecting such.

Q. Approval of Administrative Personnel Policy

R. Approval of Downtown Development Authority Resolution for Oakland County


Vote on CM-99-03-081: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch,


Nays: None




1. Request for conceptual understanding and contractual approval of a park/urban space development plan from the Linder Company for the possible development of the Novi Road/Grand River Avenue Intersection.

Matthew Quinn reminded Council they were before them with a proposal for the development of the Novi Plaza on the corner of Grand River and Novi Road, and how that would fit in with the new overall development of the perimeter of the Novi Town Center. Mr. Quinn continued by stating they would like to receive a motion from Council that would say they are endorsing this in concept subject to the final approval by the city attorney of the terms of the proposed contract. Mr. Quinn advised the revision states Linder will build the entire park for the city and will incur all of the costs associated with that development including a water fountain and everything that was submitted in their original proposal. He added Linder will donate any rights-of-way that are necessary to the city. In exchange, Mr. Quinn reminded Council that they are looking for three new pad sites (one on Town Center Drive and two adjacent to the Novi Plaza). He further reminded Council as part of the pads there are two outside seating areas that extend onto city-owned property. Mr. Quinn advised there would be easements in favor of Aetna for the seating areas and there are also two utility easements in the park area that need to be granted (one for sewer and one for water) which run from inside the Town Center perimeter out to Grand River Avenue. Mr. Quinn then introduced Ralph Nunez of Design Team Ltd., the landscape architect.


Mr. Nunez advised they have been working extensively on the plan for the Town Center for approximately one year and then described the overall development of the corner.


Mr. Quinn hopes Council understands the development of this corner will be something beautiful for the four main corners of Novi. Mr. Quinn restated the Linder Company will build and are committed to everything currently before Council. However, he added anything beyond those plans would be the responsibility of the city. Mr. Quinn acknowledged they understand these are concepts and they must first receive Planning Commission and Council approval in addition to a few issues going before the ZBA.


Of the four building pads, Councilwoman Lorenzo understands only one is an approved building pad in the overall plan; Mr. Quinn agreed and noted that pad is located by the NBD Bank.


Councilwoman Lorenzo noticed the agreement speaks to an estimated sum of $50,000 in an escrow account for the development of the open space in the Town Center. Mr. Quinn explained that exact figure is still be researched and suggested Mr. Kriewall comment on that. Mr. Kriewall advised the amount is either $50,000 or $55,000 and explained Council approved setting those funds aside approximately four years ago so as not to require Aetna to complete whatever the landscaping or artwork that was supposed to be put in the park for that amount. He continued by stating the reasoning given to Council at that time was it would be a waste of this money to require them to do the plantings given the fact that this was emerging as a concept. He noted this action was initiated by the acquisition of the Amoco corner.


Councilwoman Lorenzo understands this was an official action and asked that the minutes be brought forward; Mr. Kriewall agreed they would bring forth the minutes.

Councilwoman Lorenzo agrees this is a very attractive concept. However, she noted open space is adjacent to this property and although the open space has not been as attractive as it could be and it has not been utilized to the extent that it could be, she believes there is an opportunity to landscape the open space area so it could be used for community functions. Councilwoman Lorenzo believes open space is invaluable and she is concerned they are trading short-term gratification of beautifying the city open space, but giving up a larger open space in the Town Center area that she could see used for public functions in the future. She explained once it becomes associated with a restaurant and retail store, the area will become a part of the Town Center area in terms of overflow of the restaurants and will no longer serve as a public place.


Councilwoman Lorenzo is also concerned about imperviousness. She referred to an article stating if an acre of property is completely paved and a one-inch rainstorm occurs, they could completely fill three average size offices. Councilwoman Lorenzo is concerned about the amount of additional run-off from what they are proposing as developed properties into a storm drain that the city owns. She noted there is no direct detention basin, the water travels into a ditch along I-96 and then into the Bishop Creek. Further, Councilwoman Lorenzo advised there are no gas and oil separators in that location and she understands there are no water quality controls in place whatsoever.


Councilwoman Lorenzo understands all of the water, oil and gas, and so forth from the parking lot will go into the storm drain; Mr. Potter has not seen what they are proposing as far as their construction plans, but he understands the existing system does discharge into the I-96 right-of-way area and into Bishop Creek without any water quality controls in place.


Councilwoman Lorenzo restated her first concern is giving up open space for instant gratification and her second concern is about the amount of run off leaving the site. Consequently, Councilwoman Lorenzo cannot support the concept.


Mr. Kriewall advised the city has attempted using the open space several times through the Michigan 50’s Festival to conduct some activities in that area of the Town Center and the problem with making the area a strictly an open space area is that the noise in the area is unbearable. Mr. Kriewall explained the diesel trucks accelerating through the intersection drowned the opening ceremonies out. Consequently, Mr. Kriewall believes the concept currently before Council is the only option that makes sense on this corner. Mr. Kriewall added some of the most attractive amenities in other cities are areas developed around restaurants that can take advantage of public spaces. Mr. Kriewall believes the restaurants would be the only thing that would draw people to utilize the park.


Councilman Schmid is very pleased the petitioner is working with the city in the development of this corner, but he is concerned. He recalled when this property was purchased by the city he was supportive because he understood there would be open space located in downtown Novi. However, Councilman Schmid believes the property was never developed properly because of the environmental problems and the Linder Company never improved the area around this site. Councilman Schmid is concerned because he understands neither one of the buildings could be built based upon the original site plan; Mr. Quinn agreed.


Further, Councilman Schmid understands the land was to be set aside for open space. Mr. Quinn agreed.


Councilman Schmid believes the city is allowing Linder to build additional retail stores while at the same time they are giving up a considerable amount of open space. Councilman Schmid questioned whether the City of Novi is receiving sufficient benefits.


Councilman Schmid understands they are proposing one restaurant; Mr. Quinn agreed.


Councilman Schmid asked why are they proposing to develop a seating area for a retail store? Mr. Quinn replied the retail would be a shop (i.e., coffee shop, bagel store) that could be supplemented by an outdoor seating area.


Councilman Schmid asked whether it is important to the project to utilize this city space? Mr. Quinn believes it is because they want to be as close to the center as possible to create a urban downtown atmosphere.


Councilman Schmid advised this concept was brought before the Town Center Steering Committee and the committee was not in favor of crowding this corner. He recalled the committee was in favor of setting the building back with green space between the building and Grand River Avenue.


Mr. Quinn reminded Council when Aetna first came before them they agreed to commit up to $200,000 toward the plaza. However, Mr. Quinn reported the figure invested in the plaza for the city now amounts to approximately $450,000.


Mr. Quinn understands the buildings are close to the road because the Planning Department thought it was a good idea; Mr. Quinn agreed.


Councilman Schmid recalled the petitioner previously discussed improving other areas of the Town Center; Mr. Quinn agreed (i.e. entranceways, landscaping, artwork areas).


Councilman Schmid recalled they had planned to remove some of the mature landscaping. Mr. Quinn advised they had planned to remove some of the mature landscaping where motorists are unable to see around corners. He added criminals can also use mature landscaping to their benefit.


Councilman Schmid believes mature trees are an attractive amenity for cities.


Mr. Nunez advised it is not their intent to remove all of the plant material and they only propose to prune the many mature plantings properly. However, he added they do plan to remove some of the shrubs along Sony Drive because it makes it difficult for traffic to travel in those areas. He added they are working very closely with Linda Lemke and the city forester about addressing this issue.


Councilman Schmid understands the development of this corner comes down to money and he does not want to be committed to Linder or anyone else if they want to make this corner a show place; Mr. Quinn agreed. Mr. Quinn added although Linder is ready to start once they get site plan approval and a building permit (approximately 90 days), they are agreeable to further discussion about a fountain design that can be built within their budget. However, Mr. Quinn added if the city wants something else, Linder will continue to move forward and as long as the city could get materials within Linder’s construction deadline they could make further changes to the design.


Councilman Schmid has concerns from an environmental standpoint about the agreement. He understands if Linder finds something as they begin their construction, they can continue and charge it back from the city or discontinue the project. Mr. Quinn advised they have spent the last couple days working that issue out.


Councilman Schmid noted Linder agreed to maintain the city property, but would charge it back to the city. Mr. Quinn reminded Council the maintenance was set up in this way since their very first meeting and added they would maintain it with the same contractor that maintains the entire Town Center area. Mr. Quinn advised the maintenance cost amounts to approximately $10,000-$11,000 per year and they would invoice the city for reimbursement.


Councilman Schmid asked Mr. Quinn to consider maintaining the area because of the benefits they will be receiving. Mr. Quinn advised Aetna would consider absorbing the maintenance costs on an annual basis.


Councilman Schmid asked if Linder were to sell the project, what would happen with this agreement. Mr. Quinn replied the document will be recorded and therefore, it will flow with the property and the easements.


Councilman Schmid understands the city is providing two sites and asked whether the third site was originally planned to be open space. Mr. Kriewall recalled the site next to the tire store was originally planned as open space. Mr. Quinn agreed it was planned as open space, but added even after using these sites they still meet the minimum requirements for the Town Center’s zoning requirements.


Councilman Schmid is concerned about the location of the construction of the buildings, the bubbler and the landscaping. However, he added he believes they should move forward.


Mr. Quinn recalled the last time they were before Council they had an overall favorable opinion from Council but no recommendation. He continued by stating after leaving their last meeting with Council that the petitioner’s said they cannot go ahead and spend the necessary money from that point forward without a commitment from Council. Consequently, the theory tonight was that they have a basic written agreement drafted subject to some legal modifications. Mr. Quinn restated they need a commitment from Council tonight because he understands there is a different reality check for government timing versus private industry timing. Mr. Quinn explained this project must begin now in the private industry in order to complete the construction of the buildings by next Christmas. Mr. Quinn advised they are asking for a motion that approves the proposal subject to the city attorney’s final approval and then the execution of the documents. Mr. Quinn added the proposed design of the center is their economic commitment.


Councilman Schmid believes there are some things included in the agreement that he does not agree with from an environmental standpoint. Mr. Quinn advised that the city has an indemnification agreement from Amoco for the city’s property and Aetna’s indemnification is going to be limited to whatever indemnification the city has to Amoco. Mr. Quinn does not believe there should be any environmental issues there because the DEQ has signed off on the parcel.


Councilman Kramer asked when was the Town Center development constructed? Mayor McLallen recalled in it was constructed in 1986.


Councilman Kramer recalled the basic Town Center layout did not quite meet the vision they had originally intended and has evolved more explicitly into Main Street. However, Councilman Kramer believes it is still a desirable project and executed well. He continued by stating while there were provisions to allow for open space in the Town Center he believes the concept of the downtown area of which the intersection is an integral part does not require large amounts of open space. He believes open space is a very significant item that they strive for throughout the entire of the city and noted although they are trying to create a downtown ambiance, the proposal is still sensitive to open space, traffic requirements and maintaining the openness of the intersection. Councilman Kramer added over the past twelve years, he has not seen anyone use the park and the reality is that people go to the Town Center to shop. Councilman Kramer believes this proposed development will provide a visual enhancement for the area that will preserve the open space on the corner and will provide an element of public artwork. Councilman Kramer believes they have discovered with their travels to various cities with the National League of Cities that cities feel much friendlier if there are elements of public art in any area. Councilman Kramer is looking forward to this development and would support the proposal while considering improvements because of the issues that were brought forward this evening. Councilman Kramer added he also respects the time frame the petitioner’s must work with and appreciates the improvements made to the plan since they met with them last. Councilman Kramer added he is pleased the petitioner would agree to maintaining the area.


Councilwoman Mutch is also appreciative that Linder would agree to maintaining the site.


Councilwoman Mutch asked whether the sidewalks have been relocated? Mr. Nunez advised the current sidewalk runs on a diagonal from just east of Sony Drive to the corner and realize they will have to modify that area. He continued by stating the plans originally submitted by Beckett & Raeder for the Grand River study had shown the expansion of the right-of-way and roads, and they also proposed a number of improvements along there. Therefore, Mr. Nunez advised the area from the right-of-way to the curb is incomplete at this time because they need to review the Beckett & Raeder study as well as refining it to match the lines.


Councilwoman Mutch understands it makes sense to have a sidewalk at the curb for developments with parking at the cub like Main Street so pedestrians can walk safely to the stores. However, she noted in this case parking is not permitted on Grand River or on Novi Road and she was hoping they were planning to relocate the existing sidewalk so they would not be right at the curb. Mr. Nunez advised one thing they had wanted to do was to allow some of the green lawn areas to extend from the right-of-way bearing in mind future road expansions may eliminate that and force the sidewalks up. He continued by stating he believes the sidewalk configuration will be put in place during the site plan review process and will be dependent upon when road improvements will be made by the city or by the Oakland County Road Commission.


Keeping all of that expansion in mind, Councilwoman Mutch is hopeful that the sidewalks will be proposed to be located in such a way that when the expansion is eventually realized they are not situated at the curb. Mr. Nunez noted the city staff and consultants advised there is a three foot brick back splash from the back of the curb for salt and dirt, and is something that needs to be addressed as well.


Councilwoman Mutch advised there have been some comments made about the original vision people had about developing open space area for public use when the Town Center was first proposed. Although that has not worked out as originally envisioned, Councilwoman Mutch is pleased the initiative has been taken and the petitioner recognizes this intersection is the heart of the retail area. Councilwoman Mutch reminded Council that the type of open space found in this kind of area is not the same kind of open space they would find in other zoning districts. Consequently, she does not view the loss of vacant property in the same way if this were a different kind of development.


Councilwoman Mutch believes the city property would have some of the same problems that private property park had. She explained they have discussed having public events, but the fact remains there is no provision for public parking and when events have been held they have caused a disruption to the retail businesses. Councilwoman Mutch believes it is unfair to plan public events if they cannot provide parking. Consequently, Councilwoman Mutch believes the proposal before them is a nice compromise and mutually beneficial to the developer and city.


In conclusion, Councilwoman Mutch believes having the city’s logo in this area is excessive and believes this area could be distinguished better by displaying public art similar to the artwork already displayed outside the Bavarian Village location. Councilwoman Mutch would also like them to take advantage of looking at improving the other three corners.


Mayor ProTem Crawford likes the project and echoes all the positive comments made by Councilman Kramer. Further, he would like to commend the staff for working with Linder in this design and incorporating amenities that he believes they would like to see in a downtown area.


Mayor McLallen commended the Linder Corporation and Aetna for what is the most significant visual public/private partnership the city has seen. The Mayor hopes this will set a standard that will invite similar collaboration by others because it will not only set a distinction for the center, but for the city that is not shared by any other community.


Mayor McLallen continued by stating these four corners have been emerging over the last twelve years and she believes this proposal will not only enhance this area but raises the benchmark a little bit higher.


Mayor McLallen added she would like to see the fountain constructed with water jets until the issue of what kind of artwork should be added is resolved. Further, Mayor McLallen believes the environmental issues (i.e., water drainage) must be addressed before the actual building should take place.


Mayor McLallen understands the petitioner wants Council to endorse the concept subject to an attorney’s review and the responsibility of maintenance (Item 10) will be removed.


Mr. Watson believes the motion is to approve execution of an agreement with the Aetna Life Insurance Company for the development of the Town Center Plaza subject to the revisions made by the City Attorney.


CM-99-03-082: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Kramer, CARRIED: To approve the execution of an agreement with the Aetna Life Insurance Company for the development of the Town Center Plaza subject to the revisions by the City Attorney




Further, Mr. Watson understands there is a Council consensus to change the fountain and he wants to be certain about the design costs. Mr. Quinn advised there is a sum certain on the proposed estimates for what the fountain would cost and that could be moved to Aetna’s portion of whatever that idea is going to look like.


Mayor McLallen restated she would like the fountain amenity to be constructed without the art feature at this point.


Mr. Kriewall believes they can probably accomplish a different art form with the fountain integrated into it for the same cost.


The Mayor reminded Council they must recognize the petitioner’s time frame.


Councilwoman Mutch would suggest that city representatives meet with the petitioner about the fountain.


Councilman Kramer would propose that they create an ad hoc Town Center fountain committee to work with the Linder Company. Mayor McLallen suggested they make a separate motion for that.


Councilman Schmid agrees the fountain site would be a good spot for displaying a piece of art and he would not want to limit themselves to what it would cost for this fountain.


Vote on CM-99-03-082: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Mutch, Schmid

Nays: Lorenzo


CM-99-03-083: Moved by Kramer, Seconded by Crawford, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To create an ad hoc Town Center Fountain Committee to include not more than three Council members and community members to work with Linder in the development of a mutual agreement for the art element of the design for the fountain proposed for the Town Center




Councilman Schmid stated he would like to serve on the committee.


Councilwoman Mutch would like an effort made to find art and design professionals to serve on this committee. Mr. Quinn advised they have already contacted Novi’s Arts Council.


Councilwoman Mutch expressed her appreciation to the Linder Company for providing this mutually beneficial proposal.


Councilman Kramer and Mayor McLallen agreed to serve on the committee in addition to Councilman Schmid.


The Mayor asked the public to contact them via e-mail if they are interested in serving on this committee.


Vote on CM-99-03-083: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch,


Nays: None

2. Request for a Design and Construction Waiver for Boulevard driveway width from the Carlton Forest Condominiums, SP 98-40A, located in Section 10, between 12 Mile and 12 ˝ Mile Roads, and Novi and Dixon Roads.


Dino Lakas advised he is with JJR, Inc. and has been coordinating the site plan for this project. Mr. Lakas provided a description of the project and advised they are before Council tonight to request a waiver for one of the design and construction standards near the entrance of the boulevard where they are crossing a wetland. Mr. Lakas advised the egress lane is twenty four feet wide and the boulevard is ten feet. He explained they are requesting a waiver for six feet from twenty four feet for the ingress in order to minimize the impact to the wetland.


Mr. Arroyo advised Mr. Schlick’s memo suggested that another alternative would be to go down to the minimum twenty two foot width for the inbound and outbound with an eight foot landscaped island. Mr. Arroyo believes the proposal made by the petitioner is preferable. He explained they would prefer to have the additional width in the outbound drive because of the potential for two lanes of traffic to stack up. Mr. Arroyo believes the inbound lane is not as critical because they are typically going to go down to one lane and eighteen feet is enough width to provide for turning movement. Further, he added if they were to go down to eight feet it would be ineffectual in maintaining landscaping because of the salt splashing. Consequently, Mr. Arroyo supports the petitioner’s proposal currently before Council.


CM-99-03-084: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Lorenzo, CARRIED: To approve request for a Design and Construction Waiver for Boulevard driveway width from the Carlton Forest Condominiums, SP 98-40A, located in Section 10, between 12 Mile and 12 ˝ Mile Roads, and Novi and Dixon Roads




Councilman Schmid understands the standard is a minimum of twenty two feet with a preferred twenty four feet; Mr. Arroyo agreed.


Councilman Schmid believes they set standards for a reason and they should comply with those standards unless a sufficient explanation can be given about why they should not adhere to those set standards. Mr. Arroyo agreed they should comply with the standards and is why they noted in their letter that they would look for concurrence from the wetland’s consultant that there is a positive impact on the wetlands to approve this variance.


Councilman Schmid does not recall seeing the inclusion of the positive impact to the wetlands in the recommendation.


In order to reduce the amount of paperwork, Mr. Pham noted there is a contributing memo from JCK’s wetland consultant (Debbie Thor) stating this variance would alleviate the wetlands impact.


Mr. Lakas advised they are attempting to reduce the wetland impact to the greatest extent possible while also trying to fulfill the intent of the Design and Construction Standards.


Councilman Schmid believes reasons for the recommendations made by the consultants should be stated more clearly.


Councilwoman Mutch referred to the comments made by the wetland consultant in the Planning Commission’s minutes and noted those comments are limited to describing the areas that would experience impact. She continued by stating the consultant did not really say what the impact would be other than there is a small amount of wetland buffer disturbance proposed for the retaining wall.


In terms of numbers, Mr. Lakas reported the impact is probably less than a tenth of an acre and less than one hundred yards of fill. He continued by pointing out that the particular crossing is nine tenths of an acre of wetland impact and he believes both of them amount to four hundred yards which would equal three hundred yards of fill.


Councilwoman Mutch believes the size of the affected area is one thing, but noted a small area may experience a very significant impact and a large area may experience a negligible impact. Councilwoman Mutch believes they need to adhere to the standard because they do not really know what the impacts are.


Councilwoman Mutch asked if they consider school bus movement and so forth when a width is changed on a boulevarded entrance. Mr. Arroyo replied they do consider turning movements when they make these kinds of changes.


Councilwoman Mutch asked whether they also consider the buses turning around and exiting the project? Mr. Arroyo advised they generally try to provide for a turnaround if there is only one point of access. He added there are also opportunities for a vehicle to turnaround in some of the parking areas.


Councilwoman Mutch understands the wetland area had been changed when sewer lines were constructed and asked whether this is contributing to the wetland problem. Mr. Lakas replied the connection which was affected by the sanitary line is a very narrow wetland connection with the major system and he does not believe it affect the wetland.


Mayor McLallen believes they are moving away from the issue before them.


Councilwoman Mutch advised her question is asking whether there is something that has yet to be done relative to previous work that affected the wetland in such a way that it has created a problem for which they need to seek a waiver.


Mr. Potter believes the applicant is proposing to reduce the impacts to the existing wetlands. He understands they have received an MDEQ permit based on this proposal. Mr. Potter continued by stating they did not specifically address how much reduced acreage would be impacted by going to eighteen feet, but he noted it obviously is less. He added from an engineering aspect if they go to a twenty two or twenty four foot width, there will be additional wetland impact.


Mr. Lakas added if this area were restored differently, they would still ask for a waiver.


Councilwoman Mutch stated this was the information she was looking for.


Councilman Kramer believes the proposal on the surface is a sensitive proposal. However, he believes they are missing some definition as to necessity and believes the engineering for the site plan should include water, storm water and surface water management. Councilman Kramer asked whether there is an opportunity during that phase of the project for some innovative thinking that indicates they can improve the drainage and not have to narrow the road.


Mayor McLallen asked who requested the change? Mr. Arroyo replied the applicant proposed the road system on their preliminary site plan, so when it was reviewed it was identified as a deficiency and an approval was given by the Planning Commission contingent upon them coming before Council to address this issue.


Lorne Zalesin advised when they first came up with the plan, they thoroughly reviewed the wetland issue. He explained the wetland areas have been identified on the plan, they have identified the buffers and what the least impact was. Further, he advised they have worked with Mr. Arroyo and they are now at a stage where they have already engineered this site and have submitted a final site plan. He said if it is unnecessary to have a variance, they will be happy to adhere to the city’s standard, but he advised it is not their business to destroy wetlands.


Councilwoman Lorenzo stated given that Mr. Arroyo has advised this is a sound plan from a traffic and safety standpoint, then she would agree that reducing any impact to wetlands while reducing imperviousness and runoff is a win-win situation.


Councilman Schmid wants to make certain that the reduction is justified.


Councilwoman Mutch believes her concerns have been addressed, but she hopes future wetland issues associated with proposed development have the same flexibility in them.


Councilman Kramer reminded Council that the applicant has received preliminary site plan approval subject to Council’s approval on the waiver to change the Design and Construction Standards.


Vote on CM-99-03-084: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Lorenzo, Mutch,

Nays: Kramer, Schmid


3. Scheduling of an Executive Session after Tonight’s Meeting to Discuss Property Acquisition


CM-99-03-085: Moved by Schmid, Seconded by Lorenzo, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To schedule an Executive Session immediately following tonight’s meeting to discuss property acquisition.


Vote on CM-99-03-085: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch,


Nays: None




BREAK at 9:45 p.m. until 9:57






A. Approve Minutes of:

3. Special Meeting of March 18, 1999


Councilwoman Lorenzo referred to fourth sentence of the first paragraph on Page 14 and advised "assessable" should be changed to "accessible."


CM-99-03-086: Moved by Lorenzo, Seconded by Schmid, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve minutes of Special meeting of March 18, 1999 as corrected


Vote on CM-99-03-086: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Schmid

Nays: None

Absent for Vote: Mutch


Q. Approval of Administrative Personnel Policy


Councilwoman Lorenzo is not prepared at this point to approve the adjusted salary ranges and she would like to see some comparable ranges for similar positions in other communities. Further, because they are just beginning their budget sessions and have undetermined and pending legal expenses and judgements looming, she would rather have a better handle on the city’s finances and budget so she can feel comfortable approving adjusted salary ranges. However, Councilwoman Lorenzo added she fully supports the inclusion of the city’s restricted duty policy.


Mr. Kriewall advised this is the same policy they have followed since 1995. He advised Council’s approval of the range adjustment requires no additional expenditures because Council strictly deals with an across the board pay raise consideration during the budget process. He added Council also budgets the appropriate amount for performance adjustments. Consequently, Mr. Kriewall advised Administration would recommend that Council approve this at this time.


Councilwoman Lorenzo would like more information first and would prefer to go through the budget process because she believes she may be more agreeable to the adjustments once they go through the numbers. She restated she would also like to see some comparable ranges from other cities for similar positions and added she would like to see further documentation justifying the increased ranges. She believes if they are increasing salaries potentially, they are increasing what is coming out of the general fund.


Councilman Schmid does not recall raising job classifications from a salary standpoint. He believes the city has traditionally established a value of a job and as each position receives a raise, the value of the job is raised. He added he does not recall ever approving salary adjustments under a Consent Agenda. Further, he agrees this should be discussed during the budget sessions with back-up material as support.


Mr. Klaver advised they increased the ranges for five positions last year and recalled they appeared on the Consent Agenda. He advised they came before Council prior to the budget last year and these positions are identified in the existing policy with a footnote indicating Council adjusted the ranges.


Mr. Klaver believes there is a more fundamental issue. He reminded Council they had indicated they are uncomfortable dealing with individual positions. Consequently, Mr. Klaver explained they have deliberately designed a range system that is based upon Council controlling the amount of the across the board adjustment and then also, limiting the total amount that the City Manager has to allocate for performance adjustments. He continued by stating this is the third control point where they can say they have a position at the top of the range and the possibility for performance adjustment no longer exists and it needs to be adjusted.


Councilman Schmid believes there is no limit to the range they could increase a position to based on what the policy is. Councilman Schmid does not know of any private company that would have the ability to price a job at any price they want to without approval from their board of directors.


Mr. Klaver disagreed and reminded Council they are the body that establishes the range schedule. He advised there is only a fifteen percent spread for department directors so they are obviously limited to that range. Further, when the budget is set for number of employees, the department director is limited to that total adjustment and could not exceed more than five percent for any one position in any given year. Without having Council decide what individual positions merit, Mr. Klaver does not know how they can review individual positions. He believes even if they have comparable ranges, it still comes down to a judgement decision.


Councilman Schmid is not questioning the increases; he is questioning the process because there does not seem to be any limits. Mr. Klaver disagreed and explained there is a limit of five percent above the employees existing salary. Mr. Klaver reminded Council there are forty nine positions in this category and they are requesting to move seven.


Councilman Schmid believes this should come before Council during their budget sessions and restated he believes the process is faulty. He believes there should be some basis for these kinds of recommendations.


CM-99-03-087: Moved by Crawford, Seconded by Kramer, CARRIED: To approve the Administrative Personnel Policy as presented




Councilman Kramer will support the motion from the perspective that he believes Administration should be empowered to recommend the salaries of employees and evaluate them. However, he added he agrees it should be a more direct process rather than on the Consent Agenda and would request that Administration revise their procedure.


Vote on CM-99-03-087: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Mutch

Nays: Lorenzo, Schmid


R. Approval of Downtown Development Authority Resolution for Oakland County


Councilwoman Lorenzo is not in a position to support this request. She advised the fourth WHEREAS indicates that the city recognizes the deterioration and has determined that the creation of a DDA is in the best interest of the public. Councilwoman Lorenzo is not convinced they have adequately made any such determination at this time.


Councilman Schmid believes this letter and resolution would do more damage than good. He believes they are criticizing the very people they need support from and they are taking the wrong approach. Further, if they believe Farmington Hills is getting more, then he suggested they should look at that issue internally to determine why.


Councilman Kramer had the opportunity to sit in on the discussion with the County and at that point he understood their rationale for recommending that Oakland County bow out of the DDA had to do with the timing. He explained they had to decide, subject to correction, within sixty days to assemble all of the facts and make their assessment. Councilman Kramer believes in the interim of when the City of Novi passed their resolution and when the 1999 assessments were determined, he does not believe they had a full analysis of the assessments. He explained it appeared on the surface that the assessments did not support their prior analysis of declining property values in the area.


Councilman Kramer believes the City of Novi agreed they would rebuild the DDA effort based on 1999 assessments, and move forward sometime between now and the time period to have it reconsidered for next year. Councilman Kramer supports Mr. Kriewall’s initiative in proposing this action, but he believes they should have a few more discussions with the County before pursuing this further with them.


Mayor McLallen does not find this letter to be negative and believes it is a statement of a city trying to find all those avenues to help itself based on their concerns about action taken by Finance Committee of the County which would preclude some local activity. Mayor McLallen believes the letter is asking Oakland County to enable Novi to help themselves and not take the position that this opportunity will be lost.


Mayor McLallen understands there is a meeting of this committee before the Board of Commissioners scheduled for April 15 which does not allow them much time for their voice can be heard. The Mayor believes the city wants the county to understand that this Novi has many opportunities that are also beneficial to Oakland County.


Councilman Kramer agreed but added what is missing is the substance of that committee’s recommendation. He explained on the day he participated in the discussions with Oakland County they had expressed the same thoughts expressed tonight and he thought the consensus of the committee was to make a recommendation to the County Commissioners to opt out with some recognition that this was a requirement of the process at this point and that the door was open to return later.


Mr. Pham added the resolution from the Ad hoc Committee to the Finance Committee is planned to be forwarded to the Board of Commissioners. Mr. Pham advised the resolution states they recognize that they are trying to develop an economic tool with a DDA. However, due to the sixty day time constraint, Mr. Pham explained the county is opting out to allow a future rescission of the resolution they are passing on April 15. Mr. Pham further explained the city’s concern is that if they opt out, what is their timeline to opt back. Mr. Pham continued by stating that the state’s statute permits them to forward an intent and within that sixty days, the county has the option to opt out. He explained if they opt out within the sixty days and then advise the city to go ahead to try to get approval from the state and develop a plan that would benefit both the city and the county, the city has to then come forward and invest money to demonstrate that this will benefit everybody when they already know Grand River is a county road. Mr. Pham advised the resolution states that the city understands what the county is trying to do, but asks the county to affirm their position on economic development by disapproving of a negative step forward.


Councilman Schmid asked whether they have attended a meeting at the county since Councilman Kramer’s attendance? Mr. Pham advised they have attended three additional meetings.


Mayor ProTem Crawford moved that they approve the resolution.


The Mayor advised the motion dies for lack of a second.


Councilman Kramer would support a less aggressive resolution that is more in the line of what was stated by Mr. Pham.


C. Approval of Zoning Ordinance Text Amendment 18.149, An ordinance to amend the definition of "density" contained in Section 201 of Ordinance No. 97-18, as amended, the City of Novi Zoning Ordinance, to add the definition of "net site area" to Section 201 to amend Section 501 of said Ordinance to include shared elderly housing as a principal permitted use, to amend Section 601 of said Ordinance to include independent and congregate elderly living as a principal permitted use, to amend Section 602, subsections 1101.3 and 2301.3 to update housing terminology as defined in Section 201, to amend the RM-1 Multifamily Residential District designation within the schedule limiting height, bulk, density and area contained within Section 2400 of Ordinance No. 97-18 to provide minimum floor area requirements for an efficiency room in a RM-1 unit, to amend the dwelling unit density regulations found in the Schedule of Regulations contained within Section 2400 of said Ordinance, to amend footnote (d) in Section 2400 to address the unique needs of elderly housing in Multiple Family Districts and to delete Subsection 1903.12 – II Reading and Adoption


Councilman Schmid advised his concerns have been addressed.


CM-99-03-088: Moved by Schmid, Seconded by Lorenzo, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve Zoning Ordinance Text Amendment 18.149, An ordinance to amend the definition of "density" contained in Section 201 of Ordinance No. 97-18, as amended, the City of Novi Zoning Ordinance, to add the definition of "net site area" to Section 201 to amend Section 501 of said Ordinance to include shared elderly housing as a principal permitted use, to amend Section 601 of said Ordinance to include independent and congregate elderly living as a principal permitted use, to amend Section 602, subsections 1101.3 and 2301.3 to update housing terminology as defined in Section 201, to amend the RM-1 Multifamily Residential District designation within the schedule limiting height, bulk, density and area contained within Section 2400 of Ordinance No. 97-18 to provide minimum floor area requirements for an efficiency room in a RM-1 unit, to amend the dwelling unit density regulations found in the Schedule of Regulations contained within Section 2400 of said Ordinance, to amend footnote (d) in Section 2400 to address the unique needs of elderly housing in Multiple Family Districts and to delete Subsection 1903.12 – II Reading and Adoption


Vote on CM-99-03-088: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch,


Nays: None


G. Approval of ERIM International as the RPO GIS/Public Awareness Project Consultant and Authorization for the Attorneys to prepare an agreement reflecting such


Councilman Schmid spoke with Mr. Nowicki regarding this matter.


CM-99-03-089: Moved by Schmid, Seconded by Lorenzo, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY: To approve ERIM International as the RPO GIS/Public Awareness Project Consultant and Authorization for the Attorneys to prepare an agreement reflecting such


Vote on CM-99-03-089: Yeas: McLallen, Crawford, Kramer, Lorenzo, Mutch,


Nays: None








  1. Presentation of proposed City of Novi 1999-2000 Annual Budget


Mr. Kriewall reported the budget total amounts to $20,491,750 and noted the milage has decreased from 10.7576 mils in 1998-99 to 10.6287 mils for 1999-2000. Mr. Kriewall added this equates to a slight reduction in taxes to Novi’s residents. Mr. Kriewall reported the decreased is partly attributed to the continued healthy growth in the community and is also due to the special revenue census money received from the state this year. Mr. Kriewall explained the reduction amounts to $4.12 for a home valued at $200,000.


Mr. Kriewall continued by stating the key elements in the budget relate to additional personnel and referred to Page XXIII. He explained out of fifteen requested positions, ten are moving forward to Council for inclusion in the budget and they are:



  • Data Technician
  • Building Maintenance Supervisor to assist Ron Valente
  • Grant Coordinator
  • Clerical – Personnel assistant in Central Administration
  • Police Officers (4)
  • Deputy Fire Chief
  • Laborer – Public Works/Forestry


Mr. Kriewall reported they have also included additional capital needs such as the resurfacing of the Civic Center’s parking lot and have a considerable amount of capital earmarked for Parks & Recreation for the development of parkland.


Mr. Kriewall reported the first budget session is scheduled for Thursday, April 8 at 7:30 p.m.


Mr. Kriewall reported a headline in Crains indicates Progressive Tool has been purchased by Fiat.






1. Letter from Mark Adams to Mayor & Council, Re: Resignation from Historic District Study Committee.

2. Public Hearing Notice from the City of Walled Lake, Re: NE Corner of Decker & Fourteen Mile Road Rezoning

3. Letter from the Friends of the Rouge to Tonni Bartholomew, Re: Rouge Rescue

4. Memorandum from JCK to City Council, Re: JCK Plan Review – 1998 – Annual Report

5. Letter from Fried, Watson & Bugbee to Tonni Bartholomew, Re: Council Tracking Form

6. RCOC letter to A.W. Nowicki dated 3/3/99 advising of Novi projects approved for funding under the TIP for 2000-2002.

7. MDOT letter to A.W. Nowicki dated 3/24/99 advising of the I-275 ramp closure detour schedule for the Five Mile Road to I-96 project.




There being no further business before the Council the meeting was adjourned at 10:30 p.m.





Kathleen S. McLallen Tonni L. Bartholomew


Transcribed by:



Barbara Holmes


Approved: April 19, 1999