View Agenda for this meeting

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 27, 2004 AT 7:00 P.M.

Mayor Csordas called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.


ROLL CALL: Mayor Csordas, Mayor Pro Tem Landry,

Council Members Capello, Gatt, Lorenzo, Nagy and Paul


ALSO PRESENT: Rick Helwig Ė City Manager

Craig Klaver Ė Chief Operating Officer

Clay Pearson Ė Assistant City Manager

Gerald Fisher Ė City Attorney

Kathy Smith-Roy Ė Finance Director

Doug Shaeffer Ė Chief of Police

Barbara McBeth Ė Planning Director


Member Lorenzo added under Attorney Reports, "Clarification of information received in packet on martini bar liquor license request" and under Consent Agenda, Approval of Executive Session, added "communication regarding Wilshire Abbey Subdivision final plat approval". Member Nagy added under Mayor and Council Issues, "John Richards" and "South Lake". Member Paul added under Mayor and Council Issues "5013c Parks Foundation" and "Ken Nelsonís letter to Council and response from Cindy Uglow". Member Gatt added under Mayor and Council Issues "signage in the City directing travelers to and from mall areas".

Mayor Pro Tem Landry suggested Council change order of events in lieu of what appeared to be a number of citizens in attendance who were probably interested in Item No. 2, the Old Dutch Farms and Item No. 1 which was "Discussion of Draft Master Plan for Land Use". Mayor Pro Tem Landry recommended Council move Item No. 1 to the end.

CM-04-09-360 Moved by Landry, seconded by Lorenzo, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY; To move Item No. 1, Discussion of Draft Master Plan for Land Use, to follow Item No. 4, Consideration of the request from Lucky Strike Novi, Inc. for an Arcade License, and to move Item No. 2, Approval of settlement agreement to resolve pending Circuit Court litigation initiated by the City against the owners of the Old Dutch Farms Mobile Home Park, to Item No. 1.

Voice Vote on CM-04-09-360 CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY

Mr. Helwig wanted Council to know that individuals associated with Item No. 3 had been told to be there at about 8:30 p.m. He apologized for that but, after working with them for 20 years, didnít want them to have to wait a long time.

Mayor Csordas stated that Council would accommodate them when they came in.

CM-04-09-361 Moved by Nagy, seconded by Lorenzo; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY; To approve the agenda as amended.

Voice Vote on CM-04-09-361 CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY


1. Proclamation for National Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October

Mayor Csordas read the Proclamation.




Mr. Helwig announced positive news that the City had reached an agreement with the Police Officers Association, the Police Sergeants effective January 2, 2005, will be converted to 12-hour shifts. He said that this had been a prerequisite to implement the City Council budget decision that we could promote and fill two additional sergeantsí positions at the beginning of the year upon successful negotiation of the 12-hour shift conversion for the sergeants. He wanted to thank everyone involved in this process; it gave the City plenty of time to do the conversion smoothly.

Mr. Helwig said there were several operational positives to have the police sergeants on the same 12-hour shifts as the individuals that they supervised. There would be a more effective relationship of the same people, the same supervisor; communication performance should be enhanced as a part of adding two additional sergeants.

Member Paul asked if there was a break of a certain number of hours between shifts if the police sergeants did a second 12-hour shift.

Chief Shaeffer answered that it was determined by what was causing the overtime, of course. If it was simply that there wasnít a supervisor available for the immediately following shift, there would not generally be a break. That would mean that the supervisor would work his entire 12-hour shift, plus six hours of the next personís shift.

Member Paul asked if there were so many hours between the next time that same sergeant could work after working 18 hours.

Chief Shaeffer answered no.

Member Paul asked if they could literally go home for an hour, rest, and go back to work another 12 to 18 hours.

Chief Shaeffer answered yes, theoretically, but he didnít think they would let that happen. He couldnít ever recall that happening; that would be frowned upon. But, in terms of contractual language, that was not there.

Member Paul said that she just wanted to make sure that officers and the public were safe; with no sleep, that didnít always work well.

Chief Shaeffer stated that the City shared her concern.


4. ATTORNEY - None

Mayor Csordas stated that Member Lorenzo had requested a report on the martini bar.

Mr. Fisher stated that the martini barís request for a new Class C liquor license and in the past in connection with a transfer of license, he had recommended that the Council make sure that an affirmative motion was on the record in connection with the transfer in order to clarify to the LCC and to the world the reasons for the denial. In this matter, the martini bar was a new license and the motion did not include the reasons. The question was did he recommend that Council reconsider this and include the reasons for the denial.

Mr. Fisher stated that, as indicated in a brief note, there was a different standard that applied in connection with the issuance of a new license as compared to dealing with an old license. He said that the fundamental reason was that if somebody already had a license and Council was transferring it or trying to revoke it, that entity or person had a property interest, namely a property interest in the liquor license itself. The license was something that they owned that the City would be taking away or interfering with, as far as the licensee was concerned. Once you have a property interest, it triggered a very important thing under the law; namely, the due process clause. The due process clause said that you may not interfere with peopleís property without due process. Someone asking for a new Class C liquor license that the City owned or held, not the property owner, was not really within the due process clause because the person did not have property interests. Therefore, the standard of burden of proof if somebody wanted to challenge the Cityís action was monumentally higher if they were challenging the Cityís denial of a new license.

Mr. Fisher stated that the question was would he recommend that Council reconsider this. He answered that he would always say, for fairness purposes to the applicant if nothing else, that Council provide reasons. Sometimes reasons didnít come out just on the basis of the way the motion would come down, if a motion to approve, for example, failed. Mr. Fisher said that he would always recommend for any number of reasons if Council saw fit to do a reconsideration to put that on the record in terms of reasons. He said that once a motion for reconsideration was made, it could always go the other way. That was always a factor to consider.

Member Nagy asked if it were true that a liquor license couldnít transfer from one county to another.

Mr. Fisher answered that he thought it used to be true but didnít think that it was true any longer. He was not positive, but was quite sure it was true. It used to be true.

Member Nagy asked the City Clerk if she knew that to be true.

Ms. Cornelius answered that she thought about two years ago the City transferred one from Up North.

Mayor Csordas thanked Mr. Fisher for his information on that.


Charmaine Jones of 534 Eckschtay Street, Novi, MI 48374. She stated that she was the President of Old Dutch Farms Homeowners Association. She reiterated what she had stated at the City Council meeting of September 13th and asked that Council not sign the settlement offer by Uniprop until all items listed in the lawsuits were in compliance and addressed in the settlement offer. She also asked Council to look into the matter of the quality of the water pertaining to Old Dutch Farms. She stated that she had prepared a letter to each of the Council Members which went into more detail. She stated that they should not have to live like that, the park owners should not be allowed to take matters into their own hands and do whatever they pleased whenever they wanted and not be accounted for their actions without being issued penalties or fines. She said that the City had documents that the park was in noncompliance and was still in noncompliance; it had ignored orders from the MDEQ, failed to complete state audits. She said that the City had the right to assert fines and fees for the negligence. She asked Council to also consider that before Council settled on the lawsuit and penalized park owners for their arrogance. She said that because they lived in such an upscale community in Oakland County, it was a shame that residents had to endure the quality of living that the residents of Old Dutch Farms have had to live on a daily basis for a number of years now. She believed that it was their only chance of retrieving any help on the matter before Council now. She asked that Council remember one thing: Was this the kind of community that Council would want your families to reside in.

Mayor Csordas stated that Council had a letter in the packet regarding the water and that it was really not an issue. The Department of Environmental Quality had tested that and had expressed no problem with that. He stated that it was specifically a sanitary sewer issue.

George Phillips of 1454 Nardeer stated his residence was the one that had the open sewer line underneath it. He said that where the sewer bubbled up underneath the trailer the foundation had washed out so that the trailer had shifted. He had several photos of damage due to that: a cracked roof, none of windows and doors opened or closed properly. During the spring thaw he couldnít use his front yard because of the flooding, so he and his wife had to do their own type of landscaping to try to help the drainage of it into the street. He placed a penny next to the cracks in the roof to show size of the cracks; he said that he had repaired the cracks three times in the last two years and had to do a couple more repairs since winter.

Mr. Phillips stated that earlier this year he had a heated conversation with the manager of the trailer park because he had been telling them about this for at least five years. He had about a five foot hole washed out underneath the trailer and finally threatened with his attorney. He said that two weeks later, they had someone was out there repairing the damage. He said what had happened was the sewer line was never capped at the end of the sewer. He had an eight to ten inch pipe underneath his trailer that was completely wide open. It washed out his trailer, sewage bubbled up underneath the trailer and the whole underside of his trailer had been molded. He had to replace all the insulation underneath the trailer. He said he felt that not only was it a problem with the management but also with the City because that should have been inspected and caught when it was done.

Mayor Csordas stated that Council members had a memo in their packets that stated that City had no purview over mobile home parks; that was under state guidance and the City was very limited in its ability to do anything with that but Council would continue to support the residentsí requests to the best of its ability.

Former Mayor Clark stated that he was before Council because, after watching the last Council meeting he felt compelled to address Council relative to the way that the City Manager was treated at the last Council meeting relative to a raise and his related compensation package. Mayor Clark stated that he wanted to begin by saying that neither the members of this Council nor the members of last Council was qualified to manage a city the size of Novi. Each Council member brought individual talents and came here by way of a public trust to serve the best interest of this entire community. He stated what he saw at the last Council meeting was a display of egos and an attitude that we will because we can, the public interest be darned. The job that Mr. Helwig was asked to perform in a growing community such as ours had been handled professionally, with integrity, dedication and total commitment to the best interests of this community. Yet the reward he was given was to deny him a raise commensurate with his talents, skills and accomplishments. He wanted to know how many of Council members or spouses with job responsibilities equal to Mr. Helwig and performing in the fashion that he had performed would expect to be treated in the fashion that he was treated. He said that leadership and public trust was not about egos; it was not about gender battles; nor was it about power trips or agendas, although it would appear to some that may be the case. He stated that what was being rumored in this community was that there was an agenda to have Mr. Helwig leave, to have Mr. Klaver leave, to have our Assistant City Manager leave, and he didnít know who else. He stated that it was not in the best interests of the community in terms of what he saw.

Mayor Clark stated that six months after Council members had left, most people wouldnít remember any of them. That was as it should be. If some good had been done; it would be remembered for the good it had done, and that was its own reward. However, what would be remembered was the harm that it may have caused the community if it let egos, attitudes, power trips and agendas cloud good judgment. He said that Council knew what the right thing to do was; he hoped that one or more of them had the courage to do that. He said that the citizens of this community were pretty patient group of people, but even they had a limit to their patience. He said that he had been hearing other things in this community that he would prefer not to hear. He said that any member could make a motion at any time to do the right thing. He strongly urged Council members to do that.

Jim Korte of Shawood Lake stated he would talk about South Lake. There was a South Lake task force that both Mr. Helwig and Mr. Pearson were part of; they were told certain things wouldnít work but they didnít believe the old-time residents. He said that the sewer system that is there held water constantly. He said you couldnít put a sewer system on flat land around the lake. The major problem was at the 1100 block; they were told that was a major problem. He wanted to know if the City had responsible people running the boat how South Lake went in so badly. Traffic calming was Mr. Pearsonís only claim to fame; there wasnít much traffic on South Lake because the whole end of the world was shut off. He said everyone was told that South Lake traffic calming would happen when the Beck Road interchange went in; thatís what happening now. He said we had a road that fit no standard.

Mr. Korte stated that Walled Lake fire ambulances were wider than ours; they took two of the yellow lines in the center because they couldnít get through. And someone recommended that someone deserved a raise when that road went in so badly with regard to no state, county or federal recommendation. He wanted to know if Council would allow the next builder that came here to put his streets in at 10-feet wide. He said it was an interesting point that we have a four-foot walkway in many places that is contiguous to the road. He wanted to know if you ever looked at the funny little man on a bicycle; the arrows point east but did that mean he couldnít go west. The whole thing was a joke. He said that now the DPW was putting in drainage and wanted to know what happened when that drainage failed.

Jamie Thomas of 1105 South Lake Drive stated that she was here to address once again the flooding problem in her home caused by the poor engineering of South Lake Drive. She said that she had been trying to resolve this since 1996, and the road was redone this summer and the damage was worse than it ever had been. She had been working with Benny McCusker and Craig Klaver and just wanted to come today to make it part of the official record. She said it was her understanding that they were finally going to put drainage in front of her house. She said that Council has just been given a packet for its review, of some of the correspondence that she had over the years with people in the City.

Ms. Thomas stated that, among other things, she had to replace all of her heat ducts, have mold restoration done, repair extensive cracks in walls and ceilings, replace all sub floors, carpet and vinyl, and put in yet another sump pump. She had also put tons of gravel in her driveway to try to divert the water from going underneath her house. She stated that her true concerns regarding serious health hazards resulting from the constant flooding that has resulted in a large mold and bacteria problem under her home; the odor would tell that it certainly did exist there. She stated that in the late 90ís she was told by Don Saven that the problems would be addressed. She said that she attended the Storm Water Committee. Soon after, she had meetings with Joe Kapelczak at JCK, Tony Nowicki and Bruce Jerome. They all said that the problem would be addressed and resolved. The Walled Lake Sector Study was also involved in this. She stated now that the road had been raised another eight inches, her problems still existed and were worse than ever. She strongly suggested that the problem be addressed and resolved once and for all.

Mayor Csordas asked Mr. Helwig for the status on the project.

Mr. Helwig answered that construction had been completed, the final pay with the contractor scheduled to come before Council within the next month. He said that there had been several representations that were quite interesting. He stated that when the City started this project after about 10 years of talk, and the City had the Task Force to bring sides together, it heard a lot of advice and a lot of polarized positions. One thing was clear that whenever the City finally took the lead to improve that corridor, which had been talked about for about 10 years and meanwhile the road was crumbling and people were at risk because of speeding and the condition of circumstances out there, it was clear that a 100 year old former "cottage setting" was going to go through some agony and adjustment. First of all, with the City utilizing its public right-of-way which had been over time usurped by the residents, had to be resolved. He also stated that there were a number of drainage issues because there was a lake there and Shawood Lake was to the rear of this development. Mr. Helwig said that what we were seeing was a lot of piling on by individuals who offered nothing in that process, except swearing, belligerence toward any City officials and any neighbors who disagreed with them. Mr. Helwig stated that he had to referee that.

Mr. Helwig stated that the project now was being utilized safety with narrow roads, as it should be. No one had been hurt since the design was implemented. The bike path was being used in each direction, and families were going to the park and an improved control and filtering of runoff with the swirl concentrators that the City never had out there. He said it was an investment that the City was very proud of and was being utilized fully by the community. There were more than 1,100 people on our website that the City had kept in contact with during this process. He hoped some of that could be put in perspective to what the City was hearing. He said that there were drainage issues that the City was going the extra mile on, just as it did all over town; this was no different in terms of the Public Works folks doing their darnedest to resolve situations that went back many years.

Mayor Csordas thanked Mr. Helwig for his leadership on finally getting that started after years of nothing but talk and hot air and getting it done. He said that he had been up there to inspect that project, and it was an excellent project; nothing was ever perfect but the Cityís working that out and he thanked Mr. Helwig and his team for bringing forward an excellent project.

Andrew Mutch, 24740 Taft Road, stated that he would like to address the proposed settlement for the Paragon lawsuit. He said that it was ironic that Council was going to review the Master Plan on the same evening that it was considering a settlement for a lawsuit which proposed something so wholly inconsistent with the goals of our Master Plan. He said that in the Master Plan Council would review tonight, there was a set of surveys of Novi residents. In those surveys, 55 percent of Novi residents donít think that the services that were provided were adequate for the tax dollars paid. Fifty-seven percent felt that the public services had not kept pace with the rate of growth. He said they were not just public perceptions but accurate reflections of a city tax base, especially in a nonresidential area that had been eroded by a series of decisions that the City had made over the past several years.

Mr. Mutch said that the proposal was probably the worst plan he had ever seen come forward to the City, having almost no benefit to the City and at considerable cost to the City taxpayers. Mr. Mutch said that according to the Cityís Master Plan, conversion of nonresidential tax base to residential tax base costs the City roughly $4,000 per acre, or for this site roughly $300,000 in revenues a year. He stated that in the short term, City water and sewer services would be overburdened and additional capacity improvements to accommodate. In the long term, he stated that the City would be extending residential development into an area which would negatively impact the development of nonresidential property to the east, so not only would the City give up nonresidential tax base but create a scenario which would make it more difficult for the land to the east to be developed as nonresidential property.

Mr. Mutch stated that the big push to settle this was that no one wanted to be involved in litigation. He wanted to make it clear that this was not a Sandstone case; this was a case which the City had appealed twice and won both times, including an appeal to the Michigan Supreme Court. He said that it was a case where the City was defending an important principle: the ability of a City to do long-range planning, to zone property to accommodate those plans, and to allow the City to develop in a way that was economical and good for the residents of the City, nor for the developers. Mr. Mutch asked the Council to stop settling for the sake of settling and start standing up and defending what was right for the City.

CONSENT AGENDA (Approval/Removals)

CM-04-09-362 Moved by Capello, seconded by Landry; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY; To approve the consent agenda.

Voice Vote on CM-04-09-362 CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY

CONSENT AGENDA: (Background information for Consent Agenda items is available for review at the City Clerkís Office)


Discussion of the Master Plan, Item #1, was moved to Item #4.

1. Approval of settlement agreement to resolve pending Circuit Court litigation initiated by the City against the owners of the Old Dutch Farms Mobile Home Park to: (1) Require a decommissioning of the current sewage treatment plant and lagoon system; and (2) Compel connection of the Park to the public sanitary sewer system.

Mr. Fisher stated that this matter involved regulations applicable to a mobile home park within the City and as a result, as the Mayor pointed out earlier this evening, the City was preempted in many respects from regulating and administering regulations applicable within that area. He said that the good news was that the state had initiated notice that it intended to be involved in a number of areas to assist in rectifying problems that existed in this particular mobile home park. That was the good news. Obviously, the citizens were not fully confident that the state was going to carry these things out in the manner that they wished. He said what the City was dealing with in the settlement before Council was a matter involving the sanitary sewer system which, of course, had health ramifications of major proportion. The City initiated a lawsuit. The state had taken the view that this sanitary sewer connection to the public system ought to occur, and the City filed its complaint. He stated for the record that there was no assurance that the City would prevail in that case if itís tried to completion and appeal and all of those things. He said that these cases were not open and shut clear kinds of things. Whenever you were in a lawsuit, particularly a lawsuit like this, the property owner had the ability to come forward and present alternatives that they will say and they will have lots of experts will not jeopardize public health. So, the court would have to make a decision whether it was going to compel this property owner to take out the system that they had been using for many years and connect to the City system and pay a lot of money for that purpose, or are we living in a capitalistic society.

Mr. Fisher stated that the fact was that the City was in a situation in a lawsuit that it had no assurance of winning, but the property owner in the case said it would consent to the relief the City was asking for. The City was not going to spend a lot of money on attorney fees, it would get assurance of a victory, and it was not giving anything up because it was not saying that all the other things it was asking for was going away. He said that the City was saying it had selected this issue as the most important issue out there and it understood it was the most important issue to the residents, as well. So the City focused on the issue, had negotiated hard with them, and they were willing to consent to it and to go along with the issue which would provide the most important element here, that is certainty, of getting the relief sought.

Mr. Fisher stated that was the critical aspect of the judgment that the City strongly recommended Council to approve this evening. He said that between September 13th and this evening, there was another issue that arose that had to be clarified in the modification. That was having to do with the procedures involving a monitoring agreement that the City was entering into that related to how the connection charges were going to be made for that park. He said that basically was this: When the agreement was initially negotiated, the City negotiators as well as the property owner were under the assumption that the monitoring agreement entered into with the mobile home park to the immediate south was based upon the use of the sanitary sewer system, as opposed to the water system. He said what the City found out in the interim period was that it was not the case; so the City agreed to give that mobile home park comparable treatment as the mobile home park to the south in the manner in which the monitoring agreement was to be set up. He said that it had nothing to do with how the rates would be paid; the rates would be charged based upon the actual usage of the sanitary sewer system. He said that it was merely just a matter of how the City would set up the monitoring system. He said that modification appeared in the text as well, but the City had clarified that it was not giving up any claims that it was not addressing now, and that the City was reserving all the claims that related to past, present and future matters that might come up. The City was not prohibited from raising any of them.

Mr. Fisher recommended that the City get the sanitary sewer connection behind it, allow the state to pursue its issues, and monitor that and see where the City needed to go, if anywhere, after that.

Mayor Csordas thanked Mr. Fisher and stated that it was the City Attorneyís recommendation, and the recommendation of the administration, to approve the agreement with any final minor adjustments to language, as recommended by the City Attorney.

Mr. Fisher answered that was correct.

Mr. Helwig echoed the fact that it was the overriding priority. Once it was entered at the court and work was started, it would hopefully be a 10-week period and the community would be connected to sanitary sewer. The City could then work with Ms. Jones and other residents on the next issues. He stated there was nothing that said there was anything off the table, and perhaps even water, while the state had blessed it thus far, in Home Town Chateau Novi where a well degraded, the City went in there and with City Council leadership, it was resolved. He said the City would take the same zeal on those issues.

Mayor Csordas stated that he was sure it would. He noted that the MDEQ had made the statement there was no basis to require the park to connect to City water at the present time, but the City would continue to take a look at that.


Member Paul wanted clarification about the capacity for the sewer and which pumping station it would go to, if there was indeed a pumping station for the sewer.

Mr. McCusker answered that there was public station that existed in the corner of Island Lake and Novi Meadows, which was the mobile home park to the south of it currently. He said the DPW anticipated going through the Novi Meadows easements along the front or down Napier Road and going into an old station that was in front so the flows could be separated from both mobile home parks to find out which one was contributing X-amount of flows to the sewers. The pump station it would go to would be the Island Lake/Novi Meadows corner on Napier Road at the end of the mobile home park currently there.

Member Paul asked if it had capacity.

Mr. McCusker answered that it currently had capacity.

Member Paul wanted to know the cost to update the system.

Mr. McCusker answered that, depending on what the agreement said, the DPW would be monitoring and would know the exact costs were when it was decided on what kind of meter was to go in, and then the cost of getting to the sewer itself.

Member Paul asked if that cost was to the developer making the improvements.

Mr. McCusker answered that it would be borne by the mobile home park.

Member Paul wanted some attention given to the one resident who had the open sanitary sewer pipe; she stated that of all the peoplesí water to be checked, that one with the open sanitary sewer for several years and with the shifting of the land would be the one to check.

Mayor Pro Tem Landry stated that the residents were looking at the lawsuit as half a loaf and he didnít blame them. However, what he heard tonight from the City administration was that this was the first step. He said that the residents came to the City asking for help and the City had at least solved one problem. He understood their frustration with the State of Michigan saying it would do this and what that probably meant Ė nothing. He said he was looking at the letter from Ms. Jones, and if the information were true, that was ridiculous. If people were being evicted because they were exercising their governmental right; that was a civil rights violation and it was absolutely ridiculous. He said that he wanted to ask the residents to listen to Council when it said it was the first step; the City didnít have complete jurisdiction over this, but what he heard tonight was that the Cityís administration was committed to work with the residents to stay on top of this and do what it could at the moment. He said that the wording of the consent judgment stated that the City of Novi expressly reserved the right to pursue any and all available enforcement measures and/or remedies, including but not limited to civil and/or criminal proceedings regarding any past, present or future acts, omissions or conditions that in any way violated any law, ordinance or rule. He said with that wording, he would be happy to support the motion.

Member Lorenzo asked Mr. Fisher if the City had some jurisdiction over some of the items it was allowing the state to address.

Mr. Fisher answered that the City might have jurisdiction over some of them.

Member Lorenzo asked Mr. Fisher what a reasonable time period to wait before the City contemplated getting involved.

Mr. Fisher said that he was hesitant to give a number of hours, days, etc., because he did not know exactly what its process was. It seemed to him that the City would know whether or not it was diligently proceeding.

Member Lorenzo said she wanted to know who would be tracking on the administration side if the 30 days, 60 days, 90 days, 120 days, five months, and six months passed, when it would come back to Council for further direction as to initiating any further action.

Mr. Helwig answered that the City had driven both lawsuits very effectively, and what the City intended to do once it got entered into court so we knew it was a fait accompli and certainly monitor the implementation to the public sanitary sewer. He said as early as next week he would be meeting with Ms. Jones to get further information, go out on site with City Building people, the same process the City went through in Chateau Novi, tour the facility now focusing on those issues, then have a meeting with the state, Mr. Fiero or whomever on water and other issues, and explore just how it was monitoring that, and he would apprise Council of the status of those meetings, certainly on a monthly basis. He said that it would be a very hard-hitting process; there was nothing more important than the health, safety, wellbeing of our residents in our neighborhood setting. He stated that these had been pockets of neighborhoods in our community that had not benefited from everything that the City could muster, and the City was making up for some lost time, with a lot of help from the residents. He said the same zeal that has brought both of lawsuits to fruition would be applied to the other follow-up with Mr. Saven, the fire chief, the water issues, wherever it would take the City. The administration would drive that and would pull in the City Attorneys when it finds something that warrants that.

Member Lorenzo asked Mr. Helwig if Council could expect 30 day reports. She also wanted to know if Ms. Jones could be given that information for dissemination to the rest of the residents.

Mr. Helwig answered that the City would go back to regular meetings with them now that the lawsuit had been resolved. He said that Ms. Jones had been fantastic with emails and phone calls.

Ms. Jones responded that since the filing of the Cityís lawsuit with Uniprop, they had had 117 evictions in the park. She said that she was afraid that they wouldnít have anyone left; it was looking pretty abandoned. She also had an eviction that she was facing scheduled for pretrial on September 30th. She was concerned about the residents and where they would go. She said she had two small children, was living on a fixed income and had nowhere to go. She said she agreed with the consent judgment but did not want the City to forget about them. She said that a lot of them could not afford a good defense attorney to help them with their evictions, which were being done out of sole retaliation. She said the onsite mangers there were horrible, and residents wonít even go out of their homes anymore. She agreed that signing the settlement was a step in the right direction but she was afraid the DEQ would not do what they were supposed to be doing because they had allowed time and time again for Uniprop to be pushed on the backburner or had given them a 30-day extension and then never go back. She said it should have been fixed now.

Member Capello echoed Mayor Pro Tem Landryís comments. Unfortunately, the City would not be able to help with your evictions, but there was information on how to apply for legal aide with the State Bar at the counter at court and recommended taking advantage of that.

Member Capello asked Mr. Fisher why the City entered into a monitoring agreement with the other mobile home park that it had settled with. He said he could understand if there was a unique use, like the Expo Center, but this was a residential development. He believed that the City had a set tap-in fee that each type of residential unit paid, whether it was an apartment, a condo or a single family residence, and it wasnít monitored. He said he did not want to be in the position where every time a developer came in, he would ask for a monitoring agreement.

Mr. Fisher answered that the monitoring agreement he was comparing it to was not the other lawsuit the City had, but was with Novi Meadows immediately south, which was the direct competitor of Old Dutch; so it was very difficult to treat Old Dutch any differently in this context than Novi Meadows.

Member Capello asked what got the City into a position where it entered into a monitoring agreement.

Mr. Fisher answered that he did not have that history.

Member Capello stated that he hoped that wherever it came from, the City wouldnít be making a practice of it. He said that in reading page three of the consent judgment, he understood that they provide water and he assumed that since there were meters that the mobile home park had its own private meters and sold water to the individual mobile homes.

Mr. Fisher answered that they had a community well and either sold the water or it was part of the rent.

Member Capello asked if there was a meter on each of the mobile homes.

Ms. Jones answered yes.

Member Capello asked if there would be a meter coming off the well head.

Mr. Fisher answered yes.

Member Capello stated that there wasnít a problem with their meters not functioning properly.

Mr. Fisher answered that was exactly right; that was part of the negotiation, that was what the Cityís concern had been.

Member Capello asked if the pump station referred to by Island Lake was a pump station or a lift station.

Mr. McCusker answered that Island Lake had a lift station.

Member Nagy echoed all the concerns that all the other Council Members had; she thought it was such a tremendous issue with regard to peopleís health, safety and welfare and wanted them to know that she would do everything in her capacity as a Council Member to support them. She appreciated the amount of work Mr. Helwig had done. Member Nagy asked Mr. McCusker if the pump station currently had capacity but Island Lake was continuing to build, would there be enough capacity with growth.

Mr. McCusker said that it took a small section of the Napier Road side of Island Lake and it was always in that area. They purchased the property that it sat on from Novi Meadows. They upgraded it at the time and we took into consideration when they were upgrading the size of pumps and the size of lift they needed to move both Novi Meadows at the time because they actually had been requesting to come onto the system for a number of years. So when the pump station went in through Island Lake, all of those things were taken into consideration.

CM-04-09-363 Moved by Paul, seconded by Lorenzo; To approve the settlement agreement to resolve pending Circuit Court litigation initiated by the City against the owners of the Old Dutch Farms Mobile Home Park to: (1) Require a decommissioning of the current sewage treatment plant and lagoon system; and (2) Compel connection of the Park to the public sanitary sewer system; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY.

Roll Call Vote on CM-04-09-363 Yeas: Csordas, Landry, Capello, Gatt,

Lorenzo, Nagy, Paul

Nays: None

2. Approval of the request of Paragon (by SR Jacobson/Grand Sakwa, LLC.) for approval of the Final Site Plan (which includes a wetland permit) for Knightsbridge Gate, a single-family residential development, at the southeast corner of Twelve Mile and Napier Roads. The subject property is 74.52 acres and subject to a consent judgment. The applicant is proposing 348 (reduced from the authorized 353) single-family detached units.


Chris Cordon stated that they had been working with the City Attorney and the City Manager over the last six months. He said that they had meetings with the engineers to get some preliminary comments what their goals and objectives were. He stated that it had been a model of cooperation over the last several months, and he was pleased to present a set of plans that carried with it the recommendation and approval of the Cityís engineers and consultants.

Mr. Fisher stated that this was a rejoining of this matter after action of the Council in April. In April the Council had before it the text of a consent judgment and a proposed conceptual site plan, and the text of the judgment provided many regulations and a lot of guidance in terms of the rights and responsibilities of the parties. The plan was only conceptual and the Council didnít want to approve a conceptual plan, and the property owner was of a mind not to approve a conceptual plan with the view of being locked into the consent judgment, not knowing what the plan would hold. So there was a mutuality on both sides to come back before the Council, having approved the text of the consent judgment, approve the conceptual plan, all subject to the property owner coming back with a final site plan for this Council to approve. He said that in the interim, landscaping, architecture and environmental entered into a memorandum of understanding with regard to how the review would be handled from the standpoint of staff and of how the recommendations would be made to Council.

Mr. Fisher said that the plans had been submitted, the recommendation of staff was now completed, so this matter was now before Council solely on the final site plan. If Council approved the final site plan, that plan along with all the exhibits would be attached to the consent judgment and entered with the court.

Mayor Csordas asked Mr. Fisher if that changed in any way the one sentence in his summary that the applicant should submit the plans for revised site plan for review, which could be handled administratively. He asked Mr. Fisher if that meant it had already been handled.

Mr. Fisher answered no, that anything that would be like a revised plan would only occur under certain circumstances and particularly where other agencies required a change in the plan. He said that he didnít know that that was going to happen; the other agencies might think that this was just ducky and approve them. In the event that other agencies made changes, then there would be an administrative review.


Member Lorenzo stated that she would support this project, albeit somewhat reluctantly. She said that she totally agreed basically with everything Mr. Mutch said here tonight. She said that it was totally against the concept of the previous Master Plan: It would add a lot more traffic than anticipated, a lot more demand on City services than anticipated, and probably a lot less tax base than anticipated with an office district. She said, in her view, it really boiled down to whether the City Council wanted to continue to gamble in terms of the potential cost of the General Fund for a judgment on this case, no one could predict what judges or Courts of Appeal would do. She said in her view she would rather have this project in its current form than gamble on what the City could be losing in General Fund expenditures for sure.

She asked what the impact was on wetlands. She stated that overall she thought it was a very sensitive plan to the wetlands, the large wetland complex was basically intact. She wanted to know whether the buffer impacts were temporary or permanent.

Barbara McBeth stated that she did not have the answer to that but that Dr. Tilton was expected to arrive at 8:30 p.m.

Member Lorenzo stated that while she had just said the City didnít have monetary costs of the General Fund for this project, she totally agreed with Mr. Mutch that the City did have a lot of other associated costs, namely the City will be paying approximately $450,000 worth of sewer tax out of our Water and Sewer Fund. Also with regard to density, she wanted to know what the maximum was that the City allowed.

Ms. McBeth answered that it depended upon which zoning district. . .

Member Lorenzo said the highest classification the City had, R-4.

Ms. McBeth answered that she didnít have the ordinance before her but it was somewhere in the neighborhood of 3.5 per acre.

Member Lorenzo asked Ms. McBeth how many this would be.

Ms. McBeth answered that it would approximately 5.4 dwelling units to the acre, excluding the regulated wetlands on the site.

Member Lorenzo stated that obviously the City would be allowing many, many substantially more homes than it would under the most dense classification for homes in this community.

Ms. McBeth stated that was correct. She said the City noted that the mobile home park to the south was Master Planned for eight units to the acre, so it was somewhat less than the mobile home park to the south.

Member Lorenzo said that it was somewhat less than the mobile home park, but in single-family classification, it was quite substantially an increase in what the City would normally allow.

Ms. McBeth answered that it was higher.

Mr. Fisher stated that to bring everything into perspective, it was a mobile home park in the litigation that they were seeking that had the higher density and the disproportionately low tax contribution.

Member Lorenzo said that he was absolutely right and she was glad he brought that up, because the alternative in terms of less of a tax base or more homes could have been a lot greater; that was accurate. What she had referred to earlier was that the City had envisioned it as office, which was a high tax generator with a low demand on City services. That was the point that she wanted to make that this was a far cry from what the City had anticipated in terms of tax base and land use.

Member Lorenzo asked Mr. Fisher, with regard to improvements for infrastructure, water and sewer, would the applicant pay for all costs associated with that, other than the tap fees that the City included.

Mr. Fisher answered yes, the judgment provided that the property owner at its expense would spend the money.

Member Lorenzo also asked if there was a problem with the entranceway off Twelve Mile, with regard to the positioning of where it was located.

Ms. McBeth said that it had not been addressed in the plans before Council; it was noted in the traffic engineer review letter. She said that he was expected around 8:30 p.m. as well. She said it would either need to be adjusted and moved to a location that would comply with the standards or City Council would need to approve a waiver of the driveway spacing standards as it related to the driveway on the north side.

Rick Hofsess with Zymet Wozniak answered that they could shift the entrance to the east and provide enough separation with the driveway across the street and they were prepared to do that if Council so desired.

Member Lorenzo asked if there was a way to line them up.

Mr. Hofsess answered that it would not line up as well as it would shift to the east. That appeared to be a much better solution.

Member Lorenzo stated that one of the issues that came to Council during initial discussions of this was that the City would be warranting the availability of right-of-way for the installation of sewer and water extensions, and she assumed the City was doing that in the consent judgment.

Mr. Fisher answered that yes.

Member Lorenzo asked if the City had those available to it.

Mr. Fisher answered that the City had asked Ms. McClain to make a special examination and trip out there to confirm that, which she did.

Member Lorenzo asked if there was any documentation of that.

Mr. Fisher said he did not believe so.

Member Lorenzo suggested that someone go out there between the time that it was entered in court and tonight to make sure that it was verified. She said she would always prefer that everything was documented and double and triple-checked when talking particularly about right-of-way situations.

Mr. Fisher stated that he had asked for that documentation and ran out of time.

Member Lorenzo asked Mr. Pearson why Mr. Fisher hadnít received the documentation.

Mr. Pearson answered that it could be provided.

Member Lorenzo stated as long as it wasnít an open issue before it got to the courthouse. With regard to storm water impacts, she received the update with regard to 10-year, 100-year storm which stated the 10-year storm "should" be adequate and asked if there was something more confirming.

Mr. Croy answered that determining adequacy was a difficult question. There was the old standard, which was the 10-year storm and, over time, determined that the 100-year storm was something that was necessary to design to alleviate downstream flooding in areas all over. In many cases and without an elaborate study, 10-year storms might be sufficient in certain areas, probably in the lower development areas maybe 10-year storm design detention could be sufficient, but definitely in the higher development areas it had been found that the 100-year storm was necessary.

Member Lorenzo stated that this was a high development area with the manufactured home community and now with many homes in this development. She asked if the City had the downstream capacity to withstand the 100-year flows without causing adverse impacts.

Mr. Croy answered that Tilton and Associates did a study on the effect of the trees, the wooded wetland that you were concerned with.

Member Lorenzo said that she was looking for an engineering answer with regard to capacity and flooding. She didnít want to approve a project that would create flooding downstream and then the City would have to address those issues further down the line.

Mr. Croy answered that beyond the wetland that was accepting the runoff from the site, the City hadnít done any study downstream in the Lyon Township area.

Member Lorenzo asked if studies typically had to be included in subdivision plans.

Mr. Croy answered that in some areas it was requested, but typically if they were going to release at the ordinance requirements, the release rate was the key factor in eliminating downstream problems. He said that City ordinance requirements require a release rate at .15 cfs per acre of contributing area; the old standard was .2. Mr. Croy said that the County still held to the .2 standard, and that was what this project was designed to.

Member Lorenzo asked what the impact would be because of that.

Mr. Croy answered that the City had not done an in-depth study to determine the difference between those two release rates. He believed that it was a fairly large wetland system; typically, when it entered a wetland system, it could absorb a majority or 100 percent of that runoff.

Member Lorenzo asked what was downstream of that area, what properties.

Mr. Croy answered that it just entered that wetland system, crossed Napier Road and went to Lyon Township. He didnít know what development was down there.

Member Lorenzo said that she was just concerned about potential flooding situations downstream.

Rick Hofsess answered that the receiving waters were the Novi Lyon Drain. They had done a 100-year flood study on that, that in court when they did the study on the drain, they put this project in as developed property, so that there was not a significant effect on the Novi Lyon Drain, which was downstream of us. He said that the lake in between the drain and their project acted as a damper. In fact that was what was allowing them to lower the 100-year FEMA flood elevation on the site. He stated that if there was going to be any adverse impact on downstream, it would be immediately downstream of Napier Road after it crosses. He said that they were building their retention system outside of the wetlands and releasing into the wetlands at .2 cfs, which was the County standard, a little bit higher than the City standard, but still the accepted County standard. The wetlands themselves would act as a second in-line retention pond. He stated that he knew it wasnít what Council wanted to hear but that was what the reality was. He said it would then be restricted by the pipes underneath Napier Road. He said they did not anticipate any problems downstream of Napier Road right now.

Member Lorenzo said she only had a couple of questions for Dr. Tilton when he arrived.

Member Nagy asked if there were sidewalks in the project.

Mr. Cordon answered yes there were.

Member Nagy asked, on page 30 of Exhibit A, Bylaws for the future site, about erosion control. She asked if each individual co-owner was to monitor soil erosion.

Mr. Cordon explained that if the association adopted a plan to implement soil erosion prevention measures, the individual homeowners had to honor the plan. If they did not comply, they would be subject to action under the condominium association.

Member Nagy stated that she would be supporting this. She said that she had always professed that she was very much in favor of controlling density; however, in this case, you had to outweigh the good with the bad and look at the future costs and the costs of the City ultimately on the taxpayer would be great if the City continued with litigation. She thought this was the best that the City could probably do.

Mayor Pro Tem Landry asked Mr. Fisher how old the lawsuit was.

Mr. Fisher answered that it was 19 years old.

Mayor Pro Tem Landry asked if this passed, would it put an end to this.

Mr. Fisher answered yes.

Member Paul stated that she had a density/sewer question. She asked if the City lost electricity and water pressure like a year ago, what pumping station capacity the City would have.

Mr. McCusker stated that the pumping station would probably go the same way. They had hoped, at the same time the Lannyís Road sewer went in, to split that top district along with it so it cleaned up areas that were not deficient but close to capacities, because the densities in those areas had more than doubled. It could handle it going to Island Lake; they would probably have to do an upgrade in the station with the size of the units going in, the number of units going in. He said when they put Lannyís Road together, they took all the critical numbers that they could into consideration, but the density had changed a little bit. They thought it would handle it. The Lannyís Road sewer with the relief sewer in the future would clean up everything on that west end of town. He said with the pump station there was not a generator hooked up with it but it still might be part of the scenario, was to make sure it had a backup generator at the pump station.

Member Paul asked Mr. Cordon if they could attach a backup generator to this pumping station, because the City was absorbing a large amount of costs for the sewer taps; the backup generator was not a large item but was an item that would be very helpful. A year ago, the City had no water pressure and no electricity, and sewers were an issue. She hoped they could do a backup generator with the sewer main.

Mr. Hofsess answered that he was the engineer and stated it certainly could be done; it was a financial question that needed to be answered by the developer.

Scott Jacobson answered that it was certainly something they would take a look at; he didnít know the cost implication right now, but it was something they would take a look at for Council.

Member Paul stated that she was thrilled that the lawsuit had come to an end but, with the amount of $450,000 into sewer taps, she guessed that it would be a lot less than what a generator would be and was looking for some help in that regard.

Scott Jacobson said they would give Council a definitive answer; weíll do it.

Member Paul asked if the roads were public or private.

Mr. Cordon answered that the roads were private.

Member Paul asked if they were being built to City standards.

Mr. Cordon answered as far as he knew, they were.

Member Paul stated that she wanted to make sure they were up to standards. She asked Dr.Tilton, off the main entrance between pond A to pond B underneath the road, she asked the soil type and the depth of the peat bog in that area and would this road substantiate the water drainage between the two ponds.

Dr. Tilton answered that their investigations which were related to just determining the delineation of the wetlands went to 36 inches in depth. The peat there was only 12 inches or so. He said that his experience was that when a wetland needed to be crossed in that area, it could be done on geotextile fabric with a proper stone base and that it could be done to support the road so that the road didnít buckle. If you traveled north on Orchard Lake Road north of Walnut Lake, it sort of dips down there before it goes to the high school, thatís a huge wetland crossing, peat must have been 8 feet deep in there. The first time they did it 12-15 years ago, it did start to buckle, and then they came back with this new technology. He said that the short answer was that it was definitely feasible to cross that area.

Dr. Tilton stated that, in terms of the hydrology of the two systems, they were not connected through the groundwater. The wetland area north of the drive was actually separated hydrologically from the wetland to the south, so the plan was to feed both systems with storm water so they are sustained. The big wetland to the south of the drive was fed more extensively by drainage to the east of the project that comes into the site, burgles up in that particular area and then drained down through a wetland and into the bigger system.

Member Paul stated that the stream that fed into Pond C had a lot of buffer areas and there were some lots right on that buffer. She asked Dr. Tilton if he was concerned about the depth of the peat that maybe this house would have foundation problems or water in the basement.

Dr. Tilton answered that the question of the basements in this subdivision was one that the Engineering and Building Departments could reference and talk to. He said that the stream actually flowed through an upland area and the peat was not as well established there as it was around the big forested wetland, so he hadnít really looked at the water table in those particular areas and that was why he passed the answer to them whether the basements would be wet or not.

Member Paul stated that there were seven lots that had either wetland buffer or wetland problems at least attached to it.

Dr. Tilton stated that the there was no peat up in the eastern part of the site, that wetland was sitting on a silty clay; it was the peat along Twelve Mile, those wetlands were sitting on wetland or organic soil.

Member Paul asked if the 1.8 acres of the main wetland buffer was temporary or permanent disturbance.

Dr. Tilton answered that it was a combination of both. He said that most of the 25 foot buffer was protected around the best of the wetlands. He said that the houses were set back really far on Wetlands A and B. He said they did need to encroach a little bit when they did some of the storm water work, but that would only be a temporary encroachment.

Member Paul asked if that would be restored when the site was complete.

Dr. Tilton answered yes.

Member Paul asked Mr. Croy where the electrical lines were coming in for this site.

Mr. Croy could not answer that question.

Mr. Hofsess answered that Edison had a large power line on the north end of the project, and they were anticipating that was where they would feed it from. They had not submitted their plans to Edison for any final electrical design, but he couldnít imagine that it would come from anywhere other than the Twelve Mile Road end. He said that they were relocating a few poles and said that in some of their preliminary discussions, Edison talked about dropping the power off at those poles. Mr. Hofsess said they were parallel with Twelve Mile Road about 38 feet south of the center line of Twelve Mile.

Member Paul stated that she wanted to ask Mr. Helwig and Mr. Fisher about burying electrical lines. She said that one of the biggest mistakes the City made with Island Lakes was running it down Wixom Road. She wanted to avoid that on Napier Road because eventually this would be built out; she hoped they could be buried somewhere on site.

Mr. Helwig stated that the cost defied explanation; it was in the millions of dollars.

Member Paul stated that she was not asking to bury the lines; what she was saying was bury them in the trees, move them off direct line of vision.

Member Paul asked about water pressure being between 40 and 60 psi in the consent judgment and wanted to know if Mr. Helwig had any concerns.

Mr. Helwig answered that the Cityís concern had been greatly alleviated as of last week when the second, much-anticipated water line crossing of I-96 was implemented. He said there would be a booster station coming for Council approval at West Park and Twelve Mile to go with that, but that added redundancy and pressure that the western and southwestern part of Novi did not know.

Member Paul stated that she just wanted to make sure the City could meet that recommendation.

Mr. Helwig stated that it had been a critical given the City had to produce for this development.

Member Lorenzo asked Dr. Tilton whether he anticipated any impacts to the forest and wetlands due to the 100-year flows.

Dr. Tilton answered no impacts due to that and no impacts due to sort of a misunderstanding of how much water could go in there because they had looked at the outlets, we understand that this was where water was flowing and when we discharge storm water we are going to make sure that the culverts will allow that water to pass out so that we donít end up with a flooded forest and wetland like we have so many times in so many communities.

Member Capello asked what the size of homes and price ranges would be.

Mr. Jacobson answered from 1,400 square feet to 2,500 square feet and high $200ís and low $300ís was what they anticipated.

Member Capello stated that in his 10 years involved in approving plans, this was the worst plan that he had ever seen, just layout wise; he thought Council understood and acknowledged that. He thought it was worth approving a plan of this low a quality to settle the lawsuit to bring in some affordable new construction into the City.

Mayor Csordas stated that Mr. Fisher and Member Lorenzo brought up a good point of return on investment; there would be considerable investment here as far as the City. He asked what the City tax would be typically of a mobile home unit.

Mr. Fisher answered that the tax structure for mobile homes was entirely unique as compared to any other land use in existence. Essentially, what the Legislature has done for mobile home parks was to tax the underlying real estate at commercial rates but as far as everything above the horizontal-developed pad and so forth, it was roughly $36 a year.

Mayor Csordas stated single family homes of stated-equalized value of $100,000- $125,000 taxed at 10.541 would generate much more revenue to the City. He said the City was moving in a very good direction.

CM-04-09-364 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Paul; To approve the request of Paragon (by SR Jacobson/Grand Sakwa, LLC.) for approval of the Final Site Plan (which includes a wetland permit) for Knightsbridge Gate, a single-family residential development, at the southeast corner of Twelve Mile and Napier Roads. The subject property is 74.52 acres and subject to a consent judgment. The applicant is proposing 348 (reduced from the authorized 353) single-family detached units; to place driveway to east; To confirm the availability of right-of-way for utilities and to allow the revised plan with a driveway move, a backup generator, subject to administrative review; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY.

Voice Vote on CM-04-09-364 Yeas: Landry, Capello, Gatt,

Lorenzo, Nagy, Paul,


Nays: None

3. Consideration of the request from Lucky Strike Novi, Inc. for an Arcade License with 113 machines to be located at 44325 Twelve Mile Road (conditioned upon opening the second floor bowling lanes of the facility within one year of granting the Arcade License).

Scott Edwards stated that he represented Lucky Strike and apologized for not

properly submitting the references required by the ordinances; that fault rested

with them, not the applicant. He stated that it was also raised by Member

Capello that we would make this condition upon the construction of the second

floor being completed within one year and Lucky Strike has agreed to do that.

He stated that there was also an issue raised by Member Paul regarding the

status of the building permit. A full building permit had been issued for the entire

structure that has all been pulled on one permit. All of the references for both

Steven Foster and for Mr. Bourke who will be the general manager of the facility

had been submitted. The investigation had been completed by Detective Lauria.

He said everything else had been submitted.


Member Capello asked Mr. Fisher what would occur if they didnít open the bowling alley in 12 months.

Mr. Fisher answered that was a question to ask the applicant, what they offered to do.

Mr. Edwards stated that there was a letter sent to Nancy Reutter on September 20th that they would agree to open the second floor bowling lanes if within one year of the granting of the license.

Member Capello asked if they didnít open the bowling alley and have it operable within one year, if the license would be suspended until the construction was completed.

Member Lorenzo stated on the record that she would not be supporting the motion because of the nature of the unsupervised young people at this place of business.

CM-04-09-365 Moved by Landry, seconded by Capello; To approve request from Lucky Strike Novi, Inc. for an Arcade License with 113 machines to be located at 44325 Twelve Mile Road (conditioned upon opening the second floor bowling lanes of the facility within one year of granting the Arcade License); MOTION CARRIED.

Roll Call Vote on CM-04-09-365 Yeas: Capello, Gatt, Nagy,

Paul, Csordas, Landry

Nays: Lorenzo

Mayor Csordas stated that Council had the Master Plan which would be lengthy so he wanted to have the Second Audience Participation.


Jim Korte of Shawood Lake stated that when he heard some of the rhetoric on South Lake, generally speaking to the east of the park was 50 feet, the Waldrup property was awful; he was sure in actuality we only owned 10 feet where the road had been for years, and that was solved. To the west of the park it was 35 feet, with regard to the Senior Citizen complex they gave 60 feet and beyond the houses it was 120. He asked where the right-of-way problems were. When the took the fences, they put the fences up right back in the road right-of-way. There were several fire hydrants there that the fences curve around. He said he was not saying that was wrong, but donít tell him the City had right-of-way problems. In front of Jamie Thomas, 1105, the pavement was 23 feet, as it existed with a three-foot shoulder and a two-foot shoulder. Now, in front of her house, she had 24 foot paved and her mail box was moved three feet closer or three feet farther away from her house. He said when the City had 35 feet there was no reason that someone was arguing road right-of-way; the City could have taken without any problem whatsoever. He asked Council Members to drive by Meg Bellerís house to find out why the Cityís digging up her lawn and those three houses there, because theyíre flooding. He said they never flooded before. He stated that the road was crumbling but now the City had a road that looked lovely but didnít function. He said that was his major point. He stated that administration didnít want people to know that Maudlin and LeMay now drain and flood onto Eubank because no one took that into consideration. He wanted to know what it cost to have it bored under Meg Bellerís driveway. The 1100 block was the biggest joke on the earth. He wanted to know how it got put in so poorly when everyone was told how simple it would be. He said to talk to the DPW to find out what kind of problems the City had on East Lake; there were very few because the water generally sheeted. He said everybody was told that was the way to do this. The 1105 property had major problems because no one listened to any of the people who understood how the water flowed.

Mayor Csordas recessed the meeting at 8:57 PM

Mayor Csordas called the meeting back to order at 9:14 PM

1. Discussion of Draft Master Plan for Land Use

Mr. Helwig stated that Barbara McBeth, Director of Planning, and Darcy Smith, Planner Extraordinaire through numerous citizen planning commission meetings were prepared to take Council through the major segments to give an overview and to gather whatever input Council would like them to carry to the Planning Commission and to try to do that in some kind of consensus input.

Mayor Csordas agreed and stated that even in draft form itís a huge document with incredible information in it; it was another example of the excellence of the work product done here.

Ms. McBeth stated that they were pleased to be before Council to present the Master Plan for Land Use and to receive comments from City Council that could be taken back to the Planning Commission for its consideration. She said she was happy to have planning department staff members who worked diligently on the plan, including planning extraordinaire, Darcy Schmitt, who was the project manager and who had been overseeing all aspects of this project. Tim Schmitt was the project manager for the buildout analysis; that was presented in chapter five. She also wanted to thank Rod Arroyo for his assistance in the thoroughfare plan and former City engineer Nancy McClain for her assistance with the utility information. She wanted to also thank the Master Plan and Zoning Committee which spent many long hours over a one-year period and was responsible for much of what was in the Plan in front of Council. She wanted to recognize the former Planning Director, David Evancoe, for his hard work in overseeing this project.

Ms. McBeth noted that an important component of the Plan was the citizen participation that was accomplished through both public meetings, through surveys and through personal contact with the Planning Department; tonight City Council input would be another important component of the citizen and state call to participation. She said she was hoping Council would provide additional comment and that a consensus could be reached on various items discussed so that when the Plan was presented to the Planning Commission for the required public hearing information could be taken into consideration and really worked with.

Ms. McBeth stated that the State Legislature required coordination of the review of the Plan by the adjacent communities and utility companies; this had already been accomplished and the County Reviewing Board recommended that the Plan was consistent with the surrounding communities.

Ms. McBeth said that there were several items in the Plan important for Councilís consideration. On page 115 of the booklet (Attachment C) which provided highlights from the 1999 Plan and the differences between that and the 2004 update. She said that the residential density patterns, which appeared on the back of the Plan, helped guide the density requirements throughout the City, on page 114 in the booklet. Ms. McBeth stated that another important element in the Plan were the goals, objectives and implementation section, page 116. She asked Council to review that and provide any input on that section, as the implementation of those goals and objectives were seen as policy-setting section of the Plan. She said an interesting aspect of the Plan was the build-out analysis prepared with data from SEMCOG from Oakland County as well as from City records, which starts on page 84 of the booklet. She stated the projected total buildout when totally developed would be 72,616 people, which was approximately 7,000 people fewer than SEMCOG analysis of approximately 79,200. It was essentially derived from a close look at the development potential of individual parcels, as opposed to SEMCOGís analysis which tended to be more of a macro analysis which was less detailed than the Cityís analysis.

Ms. McBeth said that the fiscal analysis was another important component of the Plan, specifically of the growth management part of the Plan. She said the fiscal analysis was still being completed with the assistance of an accounting firm approved several months ago by Council and it was hoped that the analysis would be ready for Cityís goals session in November. Ms. McBeth thanked Council for the opportunity to collect its input and forward it to the Planning Commission.


Member Nagy stated that she had served on the Master Plan and Zoning Committee in 2002 and 2003 as Chair, and she wanted to thank Darcy Schmitt and the department for the tremendous amount of work done. She wanted to highlight a couple of things that she wanted the Planning Commission to reconsider, #18 which was Twelve Mile and Meadowbrook, quasi-public to single family, now the Tollgate. She thought the Twelve Mile corridor was coming along nicely and preferred to see it OST. She realized that it backed up to Tollgate, but that corridor when traveling from Haggerty going west to Summit Drive. The southwest corner there was a project going in there.

Ms. McBeth said there was a Meadowbrook office building.

Member Nagy said on the southeast corner Trinity was coming in.

Ms. McBeth said they did control that property; she wasnít sure if they had seen anything for that yet.

Member Nagy stated that the farther you go, there are office buildings, the mall, the medical center before the mall, then traveling up to Novi Road and crossing it, there was more OST there except for Sandstone. She would rather see it OST than residential land use, even thought he density wasnít high.

Member Nagy stated that #17 the apple orchard at Ten Mile and Novi Road would stay light industrial; she thought that was a good choice.

Member Lorenzo agreed with the previous speaker on #18 for the same reasons. Since Council this evening approved Paragon, increasing density in an area that the City had envisioned as nonresidential, she thought the City needed to make up for that loss wherever possible in terms of the balance between residential and nonresidential. She wanted to see nonresidential tax base so homeowners didnít have to bear all the burden for improvements and services in the City.

She wanted to see "11, the "west side of the tracks," remain light industrial; she thought it made sense to break it off at the tracks. She asked if the City had decided on a downtown west as opposed to Town Center or Gateway or other types of categories that were utilized.

Ms. McBeth answered that it was something that they would have to get into further, more of a cultural event-type situation in that area of the community to feed into the core districts.

Member Lorenzo said that her concern was from an aesthetic standpoint with railroad tracks and also from an industry standpoint, because industry liked to locate near railroad tracks. She stated light industrial, where appropriate, was a good tax base. She wanted to hear more about downtown west designation before she would be more comfortable with that. She thought the City needed to look at that area to see possibly what alternatives it had.

She commended the staff and the Planning Commission for a great job done with this Plan. Anywhere residential property could be turned over into nonresidential property where it was appropriate would be her focus.

Member Lorenzo also agreed with the previous speaker with regard to the area on #16 and #17.

Member Capello stated that he had envisioned that there would be a new type of entertainment zoning, perhaps "west downtown", from Wixom Road to Novi Road on Grand River on both sides of the road, that the City would come up with something more creative than merely light industrial or office. The City had the Novi Expo Center going in there that would generate some interesting type of businesses. He liked #11, which he thought would flow smoothly all the way to Taft Road where the Novi Expo Center would begin, which would satisfy his concerns on north side of Grand River. He wanted to see something different done on the south side of the road, whether it was called "west downtown" or "Gateway", something that would include entertainment along with just office or light industrial. Novi Road from Grand River to Ten Mile also had a lot of potential, especially since the City would be widening Novi Road in that area and building a bridge over the railroad tracks and might lead into a nice merger into our Main Street. He wanted to see something more entertaining, maybe like another Gateway type of entrance entering into our main intersection at Grand River and Novi Road.

Member Capello viewed #5, south of Target with an 11-acre residential piece and then Profile Steel was there. It looked like both areas were categorized to residential. He said that the resident that lived in the house next to Target constantly came forward to let Council know that residential would not work. He stated that he couldnít understand why the City would try to Master Plan an area where Council had been told by residents who lived there that it wasnít good for residential and second of all have that light industrial piece abutting parkland and school lands.

Ms. McBeth stated that Mr. Wizinsky did appear before the Master Plan and Zoning Committee with a joint request with Profile Steel which requested possible use on the property for duplexes for two-family attached units.

Member Capello stated that he found that odd that he would ask someone else to live there with all the problems he had experienced.

Member Capello asked with regard to #14, office to park land use, by the post office, if the City would ever turn it into a park.

Ms. McBeth responded that there was a likely possibility to use it as part of a greenway plan connectivity through the wetland area to the neighborhoods so the neighborhoods could be connected up to Novi Road. It had actually been discussed in their environmental committee and the greenway study would be the next project that they would be working on. It would be somewhat of a park, even though a linear park.

Member Capello said he thought it was a good idea. On #17, he didnít see why there should be light industrial uses on Ten Mile Road between Meadowbrook and Novi Road; the City had residential and commercial. On #16, to change the intersection at Ten Mile and Novi Road to office use did not make sense to him; he thought the City always envisioned wrapping commercial around it.

Member Capello stated on #21 there was a lot of growth at M-5 and Fourteen Mile Road, especially on the Commerce Township side, and he would envision that commercial growth would continue to the Cityís side of the street, as opposed to try to put some office use up in the area at that major an intersection.

Mayor Pro Tem Landry echoed the comments of Member Capello and the comments of Member Lorenzo. He also commended everyone who worked on the Plan. He worked with master plans all the time when he defended municipalities; they can be very powerful documents. If they were drafted correctly, a city could protect its ordinances and decisions. He said the Master Plan was very well drafted. Years were put into this; he thought it was a nice touch to list not only the current members of the Planning Commission but also the former members as well as David Evancoe.

Member Paul wanted to hear more about #5a from the Planning Department. If the Department thought duplexes there with a higher berm would be sufficient and a good land use, she thought it was something Council should visit. She said when the City talked about taking light industrial away, the City had just taken light industrial away at the Paragon Knightsbridge Gate, at Sandstone to Liberty Park and at Twelve and One-half Mile went from RA to R4. She wanted to know the ideas for Wixom Road; maybe that would be a good land use serving Catholic Central. The City had a lot of high end homes; maybe middle homes would be more affordable to other people. She was concerned that when the City offset that area, when Council looked at #18 quasi-public single family, that was a very large portion of property. She stated that residential didnít seem to flow directly on Twelve Mile. She wanted to continue the flow of office service technology, which was the Cityís highest tax base, from Farmington headed westward on this area of Twelve Mile because we also had some other office service technology in this area. She wanted to see how the City could make up for tax revenue it would be losing in some other areas.

Member Paul stated that in the area of office to parkland use for #14 and hitting into Churchill Crossing and making it a nice little green space to get to the post office and Main Street was very smart in regard to taking traffic from Ten Mile.

Member Paul wanted to hear on #11, west downtown land use, what the proposal was. When Mayor Pro Tem Landry and Member Capello spoke of the Expo Center and the changing of this document, she really believed that the document had to be changed according to whatís going in.

Member Paul spoke to #16 and #17 and stated that she didnít think the City could put a whole lot more commercial in that area: across the street on the northwest corner of Novi Road and Ten Mile, there were so many problems with that site keeping different commercial site in that space. She said she would like to see the traffic flow continue in that area, especially since construction was hitting them so heavily, a lot of businesses were struggling to stay in business. She wanted to see it stay light industrial in that area.

Mayor Csordas requested that the map be placed it the front of the packet. On #18, quasi-public to single family, he asked why the City would consider doing that.

Ms. McBeth answered that quasi-public didnít protect the City. The Master Plan and Zoning Committee In changing that to residential felt that it would give the City a little more protection in determining what went into the site until the City knew. Michigan State may be there for years to come but Michigan State could get out of its lease and sell the property quasi-public. That was the thought in changing that.

Mayor Csordas stated that it made sense. He said the only other issue he had was 5a also. Mayor Csordas wanted to know if that lawsuit was still going on.

Mr. Fisher answered that it was still going on, that he was in the process of preparing the last motion which he hoped would dismiss the balance of the case. He said that a nice decision had come down from the appellate courts of Michigan that supported the Cityís case.

Mayor Csordas stated that a couple members of Council asked your opinion of that but hadnít heard anything other than two entities came there to petition that to be changed.

Ms. McBeth answered that it was an interesting land use for that location because there was the shopping center to the north, a park to the south, and multiple or attached single family duplexes are typically a transitional land use. She said it might be appropriate with the park buffering it on the south side, a little bit of buffering might be possible with the duplexes that wouldnít be allowed with single family development. The Planning Committee was also reviewing a plan currently for Providence Hospital with a ring road proposed for the Hospital to circle their campus over there. She said that might be more appropriate than industrial use that was currently there.

Mayor Csordas thanked Council for the manner of handling this tonight; it was very succinct and the questions were very good. It was a matter of a masterfully planned Master document. He thanked Mr. Fisher and his administration for doing this.





1. John Richards Ė Member Nagy

Member Nagy thanked Mr. Klaver for his memo regarding the soil erosion complaints on White Pines; she wanted the residents in that area to know that there was a bond that the City could apply for the soil erosion bond money to use to vacuum the system if necessary. She wanted to know when there would be an inspection.

Mr. Klaver answered that the system was inspected in an ongoing basis quarterly; he would check it.

Member Nagy asked if the City could attach the bond to the Cof O with the address.

Mr. Klaver answered that the bond was specifically posted for soil erosion, so it would have to stand on its own merits.

Member Nagy asked Mr. Fisher if that was the only way Council could do that.

Mr. Fisher answered yes.

2. South Lake Drive Ė Member Nagy

Member Nagy received a call from some of the residents and went to check it out. She saw some people from court digging ditches and she assumed that it was not a major labor force.

Mr. McCusker answered that there were five separate gas services or piping in the direct area that had to be done over the weekend; because there was a lot of hand digging, the DPW used some of its own people and some of the WAM people to help dig.

Member Nagy stated that Mr. Korte indicated in his diatribe that the pipes were floating in water.

Mr. McCusker answered that the storm system was a charged system; it was a surcharge system, so the piping was in the lake level. He said the way the system was designed, the water stayed in the system until the surcharged out and the pipes at the end of the system were offset so it was almost like a sump and it forced the water out under pressure. The piping was designed to hold the water and keep it below ground, rather than floating on the surface or in open ditches.

Member Nagy asked if she were using her sump pump, wouldnít there be back pressure.

Mr. McCusker answered that it was possible depending on what kind of rainstorm, but most of it was designed with the flows to have the system surcharge and push out.

Member Nagy asked Mr. McCusker if the DPW was putting in ditches in Buffington, Henning, Eubank, these side streets.

Mr. McCusker answered that the DPW was putting in drains.

Member Nagy asked if there were supposed to be drains according to this design.

Mr. McCusker said that there were originally open ditches there. The open ditches were gone and everything was put below ground; all the DPW was doing was chasing the water in the areas that were no longer captured and putting them underground.

Member Nagy asked Mr. McCusker if he thought that was going to alleviate the problem.

Mr. McCusker answered that the DPW believed it would. The DPW was taking it off the surface and putting it underground and moving it away from the homes and the areas it might flood.

Member Lorenzo asked Mr. Helwig if the original design of South Lake take into consideration all the drainage issues that seemed to be popping up.

Mr. Helwig answered that he was not an engineer but he didnít think it did. Certainly in the park he knew that it didnít. The City had to do things there to correct drainage in Lake Shore Park; he thought it could be said also for some of the those residential areas. He stated that it could be documented by an engineer.

Member Lorenzo asked Mr. Fisher if the City should back to Giffels-Webster and say it had given the City a faulty design.

Mr. Fisher answered that if Council wished, it could be looked into.

Member Lorenzo stated that the City was paying good money after bad and she thought the City should be recouping some of this from the designer of the project.

Member Nagy thought Giffels did take into account the water and the drainage; if the City could recoup anything, that would be great.

3. 5013c Park Foundation Ė Member Paul

Member Paul stated that the 5013c Park Foundation received all of its paperwork. It was now up and running for today; she wanted to make Council aware of that and hopefully Council could be successful with that endeavor. It was trying to seek money for park approval instead of always coming to Council for money.

4. Ken Nelsonís Letter to Council and also from Cindy Uglowís response Ė Member Paul

Member Paul stated that on May 19th they determined the removal of dead elm and ash trees which were allowed per the woodlands ordinance. She said it looked like there were a lot of issues back and forth between the two neighbors. In the final paragraph, it was stated that they were working towards resolution since May. She stated that it was a fairly long time ago and asked if there was a period of time for them to complete the project.

Mr. Helwig responded that he didnít have an answer but could report back on Mayor and Council Issues following.

5. Signage in the City Ė Member Gatt

Member Gatt stated that the editor of had brought everyoneís attention on how hard it was to find Twelve Oaks Mall. He said that he patrolled that street for 27 years, so decided to check for himself. He stated that he passed the entrance to the Mall before he even knew it. He wondered if the City could take a look and probably the other malls in the area. He knew the City had a very restrictive sign ordinance but anything that could be done should be done, especially as the holiday season approached.

Member Capello asked if ZBA approved the 15 foot sign at the corner of Grand River and Beck for the Hospice charity event in October.

Mr. Klaver answered that it fell under the community event waiver sign; the City gave a temporary. It was just going to be up there for a short period of time.

Mr. Pearson answered Member Gattís comment. He knew there was a larger issue about trailblazing signs and trying to get people through, but particular to Twelve Oaks Mall there was another sign that was going to be reinstalled. It had been moved with the Twelve Mile widening. He said it was strictly in Twelve Oaksí court for reinstalling that sign; weíve signed off on that, so there would be one more monument sign at the entrance to help designate that entrance that he talked about.


Mark Adler stated that he lived in Novi across the street and had issues regarding SWOCC and the cable access committee. He sent a letter a couple of weeks ago and believed tomorrow the Mayor and the Chief Operating Office would vote to possibly dissolve the cable access committee. He thought that would be a bad thing; he said the cable access committee did oversight by the public, by the people that actually used the facilities. He said it had been operating for a good long time and had done a great deal of things over the years. He said that there had been things that had been systematically removed from its purview over time, which made it ineffective at times. He stated that now an active cable access committee going there. He believed that tomorrow it would be removed from the multijurisdiction agreement, which he believed would leave it no teeth. It was suggested that another citizens committee be drawn up somewhere separately, perhaps a nonprofit group; but he thought that it needed to be in a multijurisdictional agreement and he implored Mayor Csordas and Mr. Klaver to vote no, to let it live.

Jim Korte, Shawood Lake, commented on chip seal. The backend of Shawood Lake Walled Lake Heights would be chip sealed within the next couple of days. He said that Austin would get a thin coat over the top. He said that it took him one year of complaints to have the City raise the water main manhole covers so that when it happened again they wouldnít be below the chip seal. The City had raised the manhole covers at the other end of the subdivision.

He said that today he found out that the sewer system manhole covers were still not being raised. Mr. Korte stated that every time Oakland County had to get into the sewer system, it chipped up the road. So the City would be doing it again and it still would not be a finished product because the manholes were going to be below ground again. He was told that the City was in touch with Oakland County and that the City was not happy with Oakland County because the County wanted the City to take out permits to work in their own streets. Mr. Korte said that the City would be doing chip seal and the sanitary sewer manholes would be covered. He wanted to know if Austin would ever be finished.

He stated that today the City ran an inch and one-half of asphalt over the top which would be blended in. He said the water didnít sheet after the chip seal was done the first time, and now the City was raising it again. He wanted to know what the City was going to do, not put another $30,000 into his parking areas.

He mentioned that north of him was a storm sewer. The first catch basin served one property; at least it saved that one property. The next one was totally useless, served no good, not even to the house that was in front of it. It was a weed mess. Where Iva Street and the Vet Clinic went into Shawood Lake, the State of Michigan Vet Clinic and City of Novi that did that drainage system. He said it only worked partially; the old Iva base had to be dumped on because it puddled. He stated that 20 feet away was the drain, and the City couldnít get the water to the drain. Now that an inch and one-half of asphalt over the top, it was an even bigger hole on the other side. He was told today that the City was going to run pipes underneath. Mr. Korte stated that the City had one year to correct it; the asphalt was down again and was being chip sealed tomorrow and it still wasnít right. He only wanted the best for Austin and the north end.

Larry Czekaj at 24383 Nantucket Drive wanted to make a request. He was speaking to Meadowbrook Commons; he had been historically been involved with the building authority and had an intimate knowledge of the project. He said he was there tonight to query the condition of the landscaping that presently existed at the Meadowbrook Commons property and asked if the City could look into the management company. He spoke as a resident who had a family member living there, the landscaping was not up to the general standards that residents expected in the City.

He understood that the project was close to 100 percent occupied. He stated that there was a lot of money generated on a monthly basis. In order to keep that, especially around the ranch units which averaged about $1,000 a month per resident, he wanted to make sure that the landscaping that the City paid for was maintained. For example, the City paid for sod to be placed around all the ranch units and, given the condition of the sod today three-four years after the project was built, there was rye seed grass, crabgrass that was growing there which had very little remnants of what the original sod looked like. He said that the same held true for the landscaping and the mulch work.

He saw it from both what was designed when the City first went into it. As Council may remember, there was some trepidation as to whether or not the project would be received from the standpoint of vacancies versus occupancy. He said that the City had done a very good job and it was important that we do so to keep that economic engine very viable. He also thought it was a good standard for the Novi-owned properties, since the City had placed a high emphasis on the developers to make sure that not only did they put a certain landscaping in to a very high degree of quality that the City had here. He understood that there were steps to go back and review those plans to make sure the developers and owners maintained and actually had done what they said they would do. He said it would probably be a good idea if the City of Novi stepped forward to show its own projects in high esteem and as an example to the rest of the community.

He could tell Council from his own mother living there, the staff seemed to do a very good job addressing most of the legitimate needs of the residents in both the building itself and the ranches. He said most of the people in the ranches were relatively independent and there was a certain sense that they were somewhat isolated from the big building. He asked that Council take a look.

Mayor Csordas thanked Mr. Czekaj for the time he put in on the committee to bring that project to fruition. Mr. Helwig certainly would take a look at that.

Member Capello stated that he had been over there with his daughters for dance things and it seemed like the landscaping was getting shoddy.

Member Paul said she had been there on Saturday for breakfast and, although the building and the structure was lovely, what Mr. Czekaj shared was accurate. Some of the areas were irrigated; some were not. She talked to the head person in management and she thought it was Tristate Management that actually did the management of the grounds. She stated that it really didnít look like sod any longer; it looked like it was seeded with lots of weeds. She said the City should continue to upgrade the facility because it was a lovely place and she didnít want to see it go downhill.

Member Nagy agreed with the former speaker, especially in light of the fact that one of the residents complained that the rent had been raised. She thought their grounds should look better if the rent had been raised.


There being no further business to come before Council, Mayor Csordas adjourned the meeting at 10:10 p.m.


________________________ ____________________________

Lou Csordas, Mayor Maryanne Cornelius, City Clerk



Transcribed by Sue Troutman


Date approved: October 18, 2004