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REGULAR MEETING OF THE NOVI CITY COUNCIL
Mayor Clark called the meeting to order at 7:34 PM.
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
ROLL CALL:Mayor Clark, Mayor ProTem Bononi, Council Members Capello-absent excused, Csordas, DeRoche-absent excused, Landry and Lorenzo-absent excused.
APPROVAL OF AGENDA
CM-02-12-390 Moved by Bononi, seconded by Csordas; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve the agenda as presented.
Vote on CM-02-12-390 Yeas: Clark, Bononi, Csordas, Landry
Absent: Capello, DeRoche, Lorenzo
AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION - None
Thomas Swope, Historical Commission
Mr. Swope said he serves on the Historical Commission and they had plans to do more developing at the Fuerst Farm and had painted the Old Town Hall.
Enjoys the Historical Commission
Felt the Fuerst Farm house would be adaptable to be a museum
They had done work at some of the cemeteries,
Seen a couple of houses they would like to put on the State register
Budgeted study has been put together that would be available at the library and through the schools as a research tool.
Gerald Bauer, Zoning Board of Appeals
Mr. Bauer noted he had been on the ZBA for 28 years and an officer for 18 of those years. He advocated attending workshops and seminars because times were changing.
The ZBA is doing an excellent job.
He had no problems with the Planning Commission or City Council.
Every member knew what a hardship meant and applicants think they have hardships but sometimes they do not meet the requirements. It is difficult to turn people down but the ZBA has to stay within their limits.
The denials made by the ZBA are not out of the realm with what they are charged with and the approvals are well justified with the hardship definition.
Felt strongly about workshops and seminars and most are in State. He enjoyed the legal atmosphere of them because that knowledge would be needed more and more.
They are receiving enough legal direction.
Sarah Gray, Zoning Board of Appeals
Ms. Gray noted the ZBAs role would become critical over the next several years as the smaller pockets are developed. She anticipated they would see more and more of the small hard to develop parcels coming before them for variances. Ms. Gray said she does her homework and would like to be re-appointed to a full seat.
She does her homework, comes prepared and works well with other board members.
Her resources have been the Zoning Ordinances and maps. She has attended one or two on site training sessions but the bulk of her training had been from coming to ZBA meetings for many years on north end issues and the practical experience she had. Also, communication with senior members but there had been no mentoring. She felt there could be more training.
She felt an infill ordinance to deal with the requirements of isolated parcels and difficult to develop parcels would be an excellent idea.
Thomas Lindberg, Housing & Community Development Committee
Mr. Lindberg noted he was reapplying for the HCD Committee. He was appointed three years ago, a resident for 12 years and associated with the City for the past 17 years. He is employed with the Police Department. The HCD Committee has improved greatly over the last three years from the administration to communication to the way dollars are distributed. The increase in the funds allocated for minor home repairs is probably the most important part of HCD. He felt there was consensus between Council and the ZBA in where they are going and he would like to continue that and stay involved.
Administrative fees were approved with OLSHA and they have a network in place to get the word out that there is money available to people who really need it. There is also a county network that Mr. Klaver and Ms. Neumaier communicate with that brings in more and more applications. The media coverage has also helped and setting tables up at the different functions throughout the City has helped. There is more of a system in place now.
He appreciated Council support and approval of the HCD budget.
They have paid the administration fee through OLSHA and the applications for minor home repair goes into them and it helps weed out those that are trying to work the system. HCD has funds to help with needs the homeowner might have but also, the company brings in with them funding for weatherization. This all goes through Mr. Klaver and the HCD Committee and in a lot of cases those funds do not come out of the HCD funds and yet the person in need receives help to satisfy their needs.
He did not see many flaws in the system as there is a system in place that efficiently checks applicants and there are residents on the Committee who have valuable information regarding these target areas.
He had been involved in helping with applications for block grants, distributing the grant money and making purchases.
He thought the HCD Committee evolved when they began taking minutes, brought in guest speakers and people who could educate them and tell them exactly what the rules and regulations were was advantageous in making educated decisions to forward to Council for approval.
He has some expertise with grant writing and there is some opportunity for grants.
He would like to see the HCD funding increase. He thought Council could possibly afford more budgeting for the senior transit, which would free up more money for minor home repairs.
Lee BeGole, Board of Review
Mr. BeGole said he has been on the Board of Review for many years and is now serving as Chairman. He believed in treating those who come before the board as he would like to be treated. The Board of Review has to listen without preconceived notions and also listen to the Assessor.
The greatest challenge to the board is the growth of the community and the fact that the Assessing Department had lost one of their best men who made his Level 4 and took a position in Royal Oak. His loss, combined with the economic situation, would increase poverty cases. This would be a challenge until he was replaced.
David Staudt, Parks, Recreation & Forestry Commission
Mr. Staudt said he had spent a considerable part of his career serving on various State and National Boards and Commissions. He is an eight-year resident of Novi and a 13-year resident of Michigan. He is the Vice President of Operations of Allied Printing Co. in Ferndale that employees 75 people. He is a Board Member on the Development Authority of Ferndale and on the Board of Directors on the Woodward Avenue Action Association, which is made up of the seven Mayors along Woodward Ave. in Oakland County and seven business representatives from those communities. For eight years he has served on the National Clean Voting Campaign, is a Board Member of the Marine Environmental Educational Foundation based in Washington DC and has been the Chairman for the past two years. This is his first attempt at a local position. He has wide expertise in putting together strategic plans. He has written hundreds of Federal and State grants, has worked with the EPA, the National Park Service, the U. S. Coast Guard and many State and local organizations. He has a background in accounting and a Masters Degree in organizational development.
He has been very active in working in Washington with lobbyists in the Marine industry.
His background was boating and he felt comfortable working in that environment. Natural resources needed to be taken care of or there would be nothing there in the future and that is why he has been strongly involved.
He would prefer the Parks, Recreation and Forestry Commission but if Council wanted to use his skills in other areas he would not turn away.
Education is a very important part of recreation. There is a place for cultural recreation and athletics and room for everyone in recreation. He has a strong interest in forestry.
Richard Vahlbusch, Parks, Recreation & Forestry, Housing & Community
Development Committee, Zoning Board of Appeals
Mr. Vahlbusch has been a resident for 7 years and recently retired after 45 years. Most of his
time had been spent in the facilities end of the business such as buildings, structures,
maintenance and housekeeping. He would bring a lot of technical experience and experience
in working with teams and groups and with limited budgets and people. He worked with the
Warren Paint the Town Group, which used volunteer teams to go into the community to paint
the exterior of houses for those who could not do it themselves financially or physically. He
was also involved in hosting the Annual Juvenile Diabetes Foundation Walk in September. He
also holds an elected position on the Board of Directors at his time-share resort in Traverse
Thought the Parks and Recreation program was excellent. The City is growing so fast and managing the parks and recreation activity and all the other development properly is very important to generations to come.
Team effort required an environment where everyone on the team felt free to present their ideas. It is important to negotiate and compromise in order to have a successful team.
Would be willing to serve on any of the above mentioned committees.
Chris Reed, Zoning Board of Appeals
Mr. Reed has been a resident of Novi for three years and he is an engineer and was a mechanical engineer for Nissan in Farmington Hills. He built his own home in Novi from the bottom up and is now a builder with five employees. He is a board member of the Rotary Club and Chairman of the Christmas Party and the Raffle Party. This position matches his interests in building and development.
If ZBA is not available he thought he would enjoy the Planning Commission.
He respected anyone on the Zoning Board, Planning Commission or Building Department for being fair and following through with rules and regulations to make a good development and a City that is well thought out.
Mark Evarian, Parks, Recreation & Forestry Commission No application forwarded to
Council at next meeting
Mr. Evarian said he is interested in Parks, Recreation & Forestry but would consider other options if the need was elsewhere. His other interests lie in zoning or the Election Commission. He is a 12.5 year resident of Novi. Prior to Novi he lived in Dearborn Heights where he was a Police Officer, Detective-Sergeant, until his retirement. He wanted to give back to the community. He has been a coach for many years for Parks and Recreation in the softball league. He is Chairman of the Board of Trustees for his church and has been a board member for four years. He is familiar with working as a team both as a leader and as a follower and would like to do what he can to help.
Regarding the Parks and Recreation Department, he found the personnel friendly, helpful and has enjoyed coaching in the softball program. The programs are well run and have a good varied background for the youth of the community.
Would like to help the Parks and Recreation Department continue in the direction they are going.
References were provided by two of his fellow police officers.
Would like the exploration of the Aquatic Center completed so a decision could be made.
Would like to see the age limit raised so the children he coached would not have to go to a travel league or to facilities outside of the City.
AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION - None
There being no further business to come before Council, the meeting was adjourned at
Richard J. Clark, Mayor Mary Ann Cabadas, Executive Secretary
Transcribed by: _________________________
Charlene Mc Lean
Date approved: December 16, 2002