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REGULAR MEETING OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF NOVI
Mayor Csordas called the meeting to order at 7:00 P.M.
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
ROLL CALL: Mayor Csordas, Mayor Pro Tem Landry, Council Members Capello, Gatt, Lorenzo-absent, Nagy-absent, Paul
Member Lorenzo arrived at 7:05 P.M.
Member Nagy arrived at 7:07 P.M.
ALSO PRESENT: Richard Helwig, City Manager
Clay Pearson, Assistant City Manager
Tom Schultz, City Attorney
Cindy Uglow, Neighborhood Services
Sheryl Walsh, Director of Public Relations
Barbara McBeth, Director of Planning
APPROVAL OF AGENDA
Mr. Schultz advised Council, regarding #12 Consideration of Revised Agreement for SAD 170, that he had received an e-mail from the attorney for Tuscany, Mr. Galvin, requesting that the matter be removed from the agenda for tonightís meeting and placed, if possible, on the agenda of September 26.
Mr. Schultz said Consent Agenda Item B, Entry into Executive Session, should say pending litigation and privileged correspondence.
CM-05-09-290 Moved by Capello, seconded by Landry: CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve the agenda as amended.
Mayor Csordas added to Mayor and Council Issues, Retiree Health Benefit Policy change.
Roll call vote on CM-05-09-290 Yeas: Csordas, Landry, Capello, Gatt, Paul
Absent: Lorenzo, Nagy
1. SWOCC Annual Report 2005 and Telecom Act Ė Caren Collins
Caren Collins, Executive Director of SWOCC, was present to address items previously delivered to Council. First, the Plante and Moran annual audit of SWOCC for 2003-2004 received an unqualified clean audit. SWOCC came out $218,000 better than budgeted in 2003-2004, and increased the Fund Balance to $368,000. SWOCCís new budget approved by the SWOCC Board in April of 2005 projects a 2004-2005 Fund Balance of over $400,000 and a projected 2005-2006 Fund Balance of more than $120,000. It is less than the $400,000 because they are looking at some capital expenditures this year.
Ms. Collins said this year they are presenting the report in a fiscal year format rather than a calendar year. The SWOCC Annual Report is on their website, www.swoccstudios.com, if anyone would like to look at it. SWOCC is very involved in regulatory aspects and continues to
serve as the consumer advocate with unresolved cable issues and cable complaints. The rate regulation that SWOCC undertook held Basic rates through December 31, 2004. They also revised the multi jurisdictional agreement and the SWOCC bylaws and also have a new Public Access Promotion committee. This committeeís second meeting is tomorrow night. Regarding revenue, they increased franchise fees or received franchise fees and access grants so the revenue was increased for this period. The second quarter franchise fees for this year are up and results in the highest quarterly franchise fee payment to date, and more than $23,000 over the first quarter. Ms. Collins said they are in the process of a franchise fee review of Bright House franchise payments.
The program budget is also noted in the annual report and access for the fiscal year now parallels each cities contribution so that it is a fair distribution of programming and production from the SWOCC staff. Novi is almost 32% of the government access production and that is in addition to the SWOCC staff, production and work from Sheryl Walsh.
Ms. Collins said government access for this period, 2004-2005 increased 7% over the previous period. Novi is on page 14 of the report and she thought one of the most significant highlights for Novi is the number of awards that Novi programming has received. She said recently they received the results of some 2005 contests. We are the winner of the National Hometown Video Awards for the Santa Call in program, which is a live program in December that the City of Novi did with the City of Farmington and the government profile category for Novi Police Fifty Years of Excellence.
Ms. Collins noted that SWOCC works diligently on community access. Community access production doubled over this period because access volunteers joined in and assisted on programs produced by SWOCC. Therefore, we could better serve the community and the governments programming. Public access is another big project and they continue to see more outside programs coming in submitted by residents. Also, there was an increase in hours and first run programming on the public access channel, which is Info TV 12.
Ms. Collins said looking ahead to the next fiscal year, which has already started, they are expanding their intern and volunteer program. This past summer they had six interns and one of those interns has now progressed and is the co-op student for the City of Novi working with Sheryl Walsh. There is a new Public Access Promotion Committee but one more representative from Novi is needed to make that committee complete.
Ms. Collins said the National Association of Telecommunication Officers and Advisers, NATOA, website is pouring out information on a daily basis, but telephone companies such as Verizon and SBC are pushing Congress to ease regulations so they can quickly deploy high speed internet services such as video, voice and data. She said lawmakers may consider curbing some of the states oversight of the industry, and are likely to consider revamping the program that offers subsidies for telephone service to low income homes and rural areas. The primary goal of the Senate bills introduced is to apply the same rules to services like broadband regardless of the provider. However, lawmakers probably will have to design limited rules to avoid stifling innovation and demands for consumer protections. Right now there are the Ensign and McCain Bills which have been introduced, Senate Bill 1504. This does not protect local government revenue and provides less than adequate capacity for public, education and government TV channels. It eliminates excess channel support and capital support as well as INETís, and turns what little consumer protection it permits over to the FCC for development, and then the States for enforcement. She said this bill poses some problems, and SWOCC Studios and the SWOCC Commission have sent letters. She said they would continue to stay on top of this and keep their three cities appraised of what actions they can take.
Ms. Collins said there are also concerns on the State level. She said they do have Senate Bill 528 and House Bill 4600. The MML opposes any change to the current cable franchising system and any bill that would limit a local government from providing communication services to residents, and any change to the current Metro Act. She said they are in flux and hope to stay on top of it and educate our representatives so they can vote in the best interests of the local regulatory authority.
Ms. Collins said on September 20th SWOCC Studios would hold their annual open house from 4 P.M. to 7 P.M. and hoped Council would come and take a tour.
2. Appreciation plaque to Lowell Sprague for serving on the Planning Commission
Lowell Sprague was present to receive a plaque of appreciation from Mayor Csordas for his dedication to the City and his service on the Planning Commission.
1. Public Hearing on Brooktown Special Development Option (Gateway East Zoning District)
James Bruce, 23780 E. Le Bost, said his property backs up to Bishop Creek and there has been a great deal of flooding and erosion of Bishop Creek over the years. He understood that the new program on Grand River would fill in or control the flow of water that would eventually go into Bishop Creek. He thought the loss of any wetland was a bad thing. He said before the City was in existence Bishop Creek was there and was a stream you could step across. Now, it is a stream that is 15 to 20 feet wide with a good rain with erosion of the stream bank on either side. He thought natural stream beds were the highways of storm water disposal in the City. The City controls the size and direction of the roads built in the City, but Mother Nature has always had the control of these natural stream beds. Since living in Novi there has been one survey made of the stream bed with no resulting action, and there has never been any maintenance of the bed of any kind. Several meetings have been held with the DEQ but nothing ever came of it. Mr. Bruce was opposed to filling in these wetlands, and asked if that happens that the monies that are collected, because of the filling in of the wetlands be used to control the stream banks and stop some of the erosion along Bishop Creek.
Becky Staab, 41887 Cherry Hill Road, said Brooktown would be directly adjacent to her home. On Sunday, June 26th the Detroit News ran an article about Novi taking a tough stand on growth. The recommendation for Brooktown came from the Planning Commission with 22 recommendations for things Council needed to watch. In the article they said Novi had high expectations for quality development. Ms. Staab said this
development of Brooktown is seeking a Section Nine waiver so that the development would not be monotonous. She said that means next to Meadowbrook Glens they are
going to put brick and fake stone but on the primary street of Grand River it will be brick. Also, the fake stone will need to be painted about every ten years. In the report it said in conversation with neighbors, adjacent residents would prefer existing vegetation remain not where the masonry wall is required. She said the masonry wall should be required and according to the report there are ten small wetlands and one will remain when they are done. They are going to remove 73% of the existing regulated woodlands. The report goes on to say that the buffer between Meadowbrook Glens and Brooktown would be enhanced and significant tree plantings would be added. She asked if that meant they were going to replace the 73% and go above or are they just going to replace the 73%. She asked exactly what are they going to do.
Ms. Staab said noise reduction and visual screening between Meadowbrook Glens and Brooktown would be incorporated by leaving woodlands, before or after the 73% comes out, and additional landscaping trees. She said trees are great in the summer, but in the winter they will offer no noise reduction and no visual screening. She said the masonry wall needs to stay.
Ms. Staab said the traffic recommendation said that, in the future, a light would need to be added at Grand River and drive #2 and she thought it would be a little stop and go there and that is before the corner is developed. The people on Cherry Hill do not want a light at Meadowbrook and Cherry Hill. Although, she had asked for information and had received some no one has ever addressed the fact that there was not a public hearing on the stop light nor the fact that it is 775 feet from the Grand River stop light to the stop light at Cherry Hill.
She said the article in the Detroit News said the City also follows the ordinance requirements to the letter to monitor the quality of new projects. The people in Meadowbrook Glens deserve a quality development. She asked Council to hold them to the Gateway Ordinance.
1. SPECIAL/COMMITTEE - None
2. CITY MANAGER - None
3. DEPARTMENTAL - "Fall for Novi" Saturday, September 17, 2005 Ė 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Cindy Uglow, Neighborhood Services, said on behalf of herself and Sheryl Walsh, she wanted to invite Council to the fourth annual Fall for Novi main event. There will be something for everyone and everything is free. The exhibits include all City departments, community groups, area schools and a variety of local service. She said organizations will be hosting educational booths in the atrium.
Ms. Uglow said there will be great activities for kids of all ages. There will be a moonwalk to bounce on, fire instructions in the safety trailer, pictures taken with Sparky, miniature golf, police department child ID kit, face painting and a variety of fun games. She said there would also be health and nutritional information from Providence Hospital who will be offering free health screenings including bone density, blood pressure and an Ask the Doctor booth.
Also, Household Hazardous Waste will be located by Power Park and will include community members from Wixom, Farmington Hills, Lyon Township, South Lyon, Southfield and Walled Lake. Proof of residency will be required. This year community members can bring up to 100 pounds of items such as bank statements, paper products, medical records, tax information and have them shredded. Upon completion of the shredding they will receive a certificate of destruction.
Ms. Uglow said there will be a fall perennial exchange and there will also be Marcus Burgers. She said they started off in the first event with a little under 100 people but last year they exceeded 1,100.
Sheryl Walsh, Director of Public Relations, said the event offers something for everyone. This year two additional pieces will be added to this event. The 911 Memorial dedication will kick off the event at 10 A.M. with a dedication ceremony on the south east lawn. The City was able to secure this 4 foot statue through participation and partnership with a variety of community business members. This statue will be dedicated in honor of Novi Fire Chief Art Lenaghan, Novi Fire Fighters and in honor of all those who lost their life on September 11th. Also new is a display called the Walk of Fame which will celebrate and honor those who have contributed their time, talents, energy and efforts to making Novi what it is today. She say approximately 20 individuals will be honored and it will be a nice way for everyone to get a glimpse of the history of Novi and celebrate our past and the great traditions of Novi.
Member Nagy asked who came up with the names for the Walk of Fame.
Ms. Walsh said they had been gathered by a variety of different community members. People have suggested other people, history books were read, people have been brought up by Council Members at the table, and there are no formal nominations. She said the idea came out of the Pioneer Day, and they thought each year they would continue with the people honored this year and add ten or fifteen names so that the Walk of Fame continues to grow each year as community and business members contribute to the success of the City.
Mayor Csordas said he wanted to mention that the 911 Memorial was initiated by Member Paul. He thanked Member Paul for her efforts in getting that done.
4. ATTORNEY - None
AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION - None
CONSENT AGENDA (Approval/Removals)
Mayor Pro Tem Landry removed Item K.
Member Capello removed Item L.
CM-05-09-291 Moved by Nagy, seconded by Lorenzo: CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve the agenda as amended.
Motion passed by voice vote
A. Approve Minutes of:
B. Enter Executive Session immediately following the regular meeting of September 12, 2005 in the Council Annex for the purpose of discussing pending litigation and privileged correspondence.
C. Approval to award bid to Princeton Studios, the low bidder based on unit pricing. (Provides photographic services for individual and team pictures for youth sports programs).
D. Approval of renewal of Taxi Cab Company License with three (3) cabs for ABC Cab Company, 12853 Levan, Livonia, MI 48150.
E. Approval to award bid to purchase a tree chipper to Bandit Industries, Inc., the low bidder, in the amount of $18,396.08.
F. Approval of Salary increase for City Manager and City Clerk in the amount of 3.75% retroactive to July 1, 2005 and also authorize increase of $4,000 in Cityís contribution to City Managerís ICMA deferred compensation for the calendar year 2005.
G. Approval to renew Arcade Business License requested by Soccer Zone, Inc., 41550 Grand River, with nine (9) machines.
H. Approval of License Agreement with Richard Beal for the placement of brick pavers as a drive approach within the right-of-way of 41678 Sycamore.
I. Approval to dedicate right-of-way for two City-owned parcels along Novi Road to the Road Commission for Oakland County in conjunction with the Novi Road Widening Project.
J. Approval of the 2005-2006 Winter Maintenance Agreement between the City of Novi and the Road Commission for Oakland County for snow and ice removal operations on certain County-owned roads within Noviís jurisdiction.
M. Approval of Claims and Accounts Ė Warrant No. 704
MATTERS FOR COUNCIL ACTION Ė Part I
1. Consideration of tentative approval of the request of ADCO Group, LLC for
a proposed Special Development Option Concept Plan. The subject
property is located in Section 23, south of Grand River Avenue and west of
Meadowbrook Road in the GE (Gateway East) District. The subject property
is approximately 26.54 acres. The applicant is proposing a 225 unit
multiple-family residential development with some retail/office, restaurant
and live/work buildings.
Matt Quinn, representing ADCO Group, LLC, stated that it was a $55-million project at build-out which would bring a significant tax dollar to the City. He stated that it complied with not only zoning, it was rezoned this May by Council, and it complied with the Master Plan, under the Gateway East Rezoning. He stated that the idea of Gateway East was to provide a transition between the outskirts of town and the Main Street area after going westbound on Meadowbrook Road. He stated that the idea behind the Gateway East ordinance was to bring in mixed-use developments with residential use, commercial, office use or any mixture thereof; also, there was a special development option. If the applicant, as they did, wanted to bring in a mixed-use development, the special development option offered a couple benefits: One was an extra story high, from two-story to three-stories, but it had significant limitations because it also required a written contract to be entered into after tonight. He stated that after a concept plan was approved, the City Attorney would then, with Councilís assistance, agree on the written contract. The written contract would then set the tone of the development from there forward.
Mr. Quinn stated that the next step would be to bring in a preliminary site plan and go through the process, but that preliminary site plan was then based upon the written contract, so that both the City and he had the assurances that what was approved in concept and the exhibits that would be attached to the written agreement were, in fact, what the City would end up with as a resulting project.
Mr. Quinn stated that it was the old NCC District, which was a zoning district along Grand River; its intent was to act as a holding district to keep out strip malls and things like that. He stated that it did a great job; not only did it keep out strip malls, but it kept out all development. He stated that Council and the Planning Commission determined that the Gateway East District was the way to move that corridor forward.
Mr. Quinn stated that ADCO took seven parcels of property which encompassed about 26.5 acres. He stated that the proposal, as outlined, would end up with 225 condominiums, all with two-car garages. He stated they would be similar in price to Gateway Village at around $200,000. The retail would be just under 25,000 square feet and front on Grand River, there would be about 5,000 sq. ft. of additional retail and restaurant, and there would be just under 41,000 square feet of office in the area.
Mr. Quinn stated that what was unique to Novi was for the first time there would be condominiums that are live/work, which are catching on in many places. He stated there would be buildings on each side of the main entry road, and there would be nine units on the first floor. If a person were, for example, an architect or hairdresser, that person could have an office or shop and live upstairs. He stated that Walled Lake just introduced live/work on West Maple Road, and they were sold out before construction was finished.
Mr. Quinn stated that Brooktown flowed from three-story buildings on Grand River. Grand River would be first-floor retail and then offices above, and going south to Meadowbrook Glens, which abutted on the south side to the two-story residential buildings, so there was the height where it should be at Grand River and the two-stories which are not much taller than the two-story colonial homes along that street, right on the buffer south of the project. He stated the live/work was at the first two main buildings on the entryway; they have on-street parking in front of them, so there was easy access similar to Main Street, where it acted as the first buffer of parking with the retail. He said the first level of parking, right along Grand River, was between the right-of-way line and the retail office buildings. There was one row of parking all along the front which mirrored exactly what was on the other side of the street at Gateway Village. He stated that the purpose of the parking was very important; it took the place of the main street parking, which was convenience parking for the grouping of the retail, office and restaurant. He stated that the balance of the parking for the retail, office and restaurant was located to the rear of those buildings.
Mr. Quinn stated that all the residential components had two-car garages, and they all had additional parking on the driveway; there were periodic places throughout where there was additional on-street parking for that purpose. In the center, the focal point is a clubhouse with a swimming pool and a green space area for recreation and picnicking.
Mr. Quinn said the project, with the 225 residential units, was about eight units an acre and Gateway Village is 13 units per acre. He stated they were at about half of what they could have at the location and all of the residential buildings could be three stories, but they chose not to do that. It was too much for the site, so ADCO had agreed that the 225-unit mix was a good number to build and to sell. He commented that there are a lot of amenities in the development. There are two miles of sidewalk so it is very pedestrian oriented and would be open to the public, which was unique. The walkway system goes all the way through to the end, and if the City desired, they would hook that into Cherry Hill. He said that way, people from Cherry Hill or from the Senior Center could walk to Grand River through the project getting to the retail or restaurant easily, and then cross the street to get to Gateway Village if a pedestrian traffic signal is put there.
Mr. Quinn stated the people who lived to the south would have access to Trillium Park, the benches and sitting areas throughout the green space that was being left. He stated there would be a water feature in the detention pond and a place to sit. He stated the architecture in the development was of a timeless nature and would be real brick throughout. They were asking to use hardy plank rather than aluminum or vinyl siding, and would use cultured stone, which was as hard as any stone.
Mr. Quinn commented that he would not argue all of the variances, because they were obvious. He stated the front-yard parking equated to the setback along Grand River. He thought they were all very necessary in the proposal. He stated that the Cityís Grand River Corridor Study recommended front-yard parking, just as they had; the ordinance referenced the Grand River Corridor Study, so the City had asked for that front-yard parking for the last 10-15 years since that Grand River Corridor Study was there. He stated that their traffic expert referenced the national standard for shared parking, since it was mixed use development, and stated that they had sufficient number of shared parking to satisfy that. He stated that they were doing a little mitigation off-site; they just couldnít fit it in. He stated that they had two wetlands that they were keeping. He stated that they were looking at the City park; they had a proposal that had been reviewed by Randy Auler, Director of Parks, Recreation & Forestry. There were wetlands at the Napier Park; there was some upland that the City was not using and there was a thought that they might implement some additional wetland and assist the City with its recreational educational program by assisting Parks, Recreation & Forestry by a monetary donation to put in some walkways there, or they could possibly take care of that also.
Mr. Quinn stated that it was a beautiful project and fit in exactly what the Gateway district had asked. He stated that it was actually less than what the Gateway district asked for. He said it was better than what was across the street; it was newer and would be more of a benefit not only to the residents inside of the development but those on its perimeter who wanted to take part in the benefits of it; the City would ultimately win by having a design that would be there forever and by having a significant input into its tax base. Mr. Quinn stated that all of their consultants were present to answer any questions.
Member Lorenzo stated that, generally, she liked the concept; she would have preferred an increased percentage of office versus more residential, but it was not necessarily her biggest issue with that. She stated that she would try to run down some of the variance requests in order of her concerns. Her biggest concern about the project was the wetland mitigation and wetland loss. She would be opposed, if at all possible, to mitigating offsite, because one of the biggest benefits of the wetlands was that they acted as a sponge, whether they held water or they absorbed it. When you lost the wetland areas, the sponge function was lost; the water had to go somewhere, which generally meant that there would be an increased volume of water and an increased speed of water downstream. She stated that was what caused a lot of the erosion problems, sedimentation problems, as well as issues with the ecological stream bank.
Member Lorenzo stated that the wetland consultant indicated that there appeared to be an area onsite; he believed that the wetland mitigation was feasible onsite near the southwest corner of the property, east of the woodland, in an upland area labeled as "brush" on the plan. She stated that was where she would be in favor of the wetland mitigation, if it were feasible. She also wanted to know whether it was only the half-acre
of wetland that they were filling that was proposed to mitigate or all of the wetland loss on the site, because even though there were small pockets of wetlands, in terms of functionality, held, stored and absorbed water. She wanted to see mitigation that
included all of the loss, not just the half-acre wetland. She asked if someone could respond to that question.
Woody Held from King, MacGregor Environmental, wetland consultant, stated that the total wetland loss was .52 acres and the additional nonessential wetland loss was .04. He stated that the additional mitigation would not be difficult to accommodate.
Member Lorenzo asked what the mitigation ratio was.
Mr. Held answered that they were mitigating no less than.
Member Lorenzo asked if that meant they would be willing to increase that mitigation, say two to one.
Mr. Held answered yes.
Member Lorenzo asked if he had explored the area that the Cityís wetland consultant suggested in the "brush" area.
Mr. Held answered that he had not been able to define what specific area he talked about; having just received the letter; he needed to get more information.
Member Lorenzo stated that her number one concern was that it was mitigated and mitigated in an area that was going to compensate the particular Bishop Creek watershed; she did not want to lose the functionality of the wetlands in that area.
Member Lorenzo stated that her next concern was the number of replacement trees; she would not support any less than was required by the Cityís ordinance. She stated that street trees, parking lot trees, if they wanted to use evergreen trees and different types of trees in the parking lot, if it was not a site issue, that was fine, but the City needed all the trees that could be mustered in the City. She expected the applicant to comply with the ordinance in that sense; there would be no room for any variance, in her opinion, on that issue. She stated that it was a big issue in the City with residents; she thought their constituents would expect Council to do no less than what the ordinance required.
Member Lorenzo stated that the next concern she had was the noise and screening for the homeowners on Cherry Hill. She did not know if they had conducted any noise studies, tests or anything of that nature. She said many years ago when she served on the Planning Commission, experts came in and basically told them that it was not so much the trees and the vegetation that supplied the sound-deadening effect but actually the berming that would do that. She stated that the City wanted to protect and preserve the natural trees in that area, but she was also looking for protection from noise and to make sure that if the City was going to maintain the natural screening that the natural screening had the opacity that the ordinance required; she thought that was 90 percent in summer and 80 percent in winter. She asked if there was someone who could speak to that issue of screening.
Mr. Quinn stated that the changes that were made from the earlier plans; this used to be a fourplex building, the one closest to Meadowbrook Glen, and had now been reduced to a two-plex building and had been shifted. There had been already some adjustments; they had maintained the 75-foot setback that was required; originally they were encroaching, but they had met the ordinance requirements in that area.
Member Lorenzo asked if they were still encroaching into those 75 feet with some parking lot area and some pathways.
Mr. Quinn answered that the buildings were not within the 75 feet.
Member Lorenzo stated that if there were any way of removing those parking lots and revamping them and relocating them to other areas; she would certainly like to see that explored strongly. She would like to see a full 75 feet of nothing in there, if at all possible.
Courtney Petrowski of Russell Design, the landscape architects on the project, stated that currently they were proposing to replace all required woodland trees, many of which were located on the plan and the remainder of those trees would be located within the existing woodland areas to supplement and to meet that required 80/90 percent opacity.
Member Lorenzo asked if they were going to mix it up; were there going to be evergreens in there also, because, obviously, deciduous trees lose leaves and you could see everything. She asked what they were going to do to address that.
Ms. Petrowski stated that they were proposing a mixture of trees, working with the City forester to meet onsite to field locate those trees within that 75 foot buffer, meander the walkway through that and meet that opacity with those required woodland trees in the woodland, as the ordinance required. She stated that was the goal and the numbers that would be replaced; the goal was to include native species in the woodland areas and meet all of those goals of that screening.
Member Lorenzo recapped that they would be enhancing the natural buffer area with additional plantings to meet the ordinance requirements of the opacity of 90 percent in summer and 80 percent in winter, and they were going to utilize both deciduous and evergreens in order to do that.
Ms. Petrowski answered that was the goal.
Member Lorenzo stated that with regard to the pathway, she wanted to be totally honest with them, and stated that she was concerned that the pathway was too close to the residents on Cherry Hill. She knew that pathways could be a wonderful thing, but they also could be an attractive nuisance and places where people could loiter, places where people could do things that they shouldnít be doing, etc., and very easily spill over to Cherry Hill. She stated that it would be her preference to remove all of the pathways in the wooded area behind the homes on Cherry Hill. She stated that all the other walkways were great; to be honest, in terms of connecting to Cherry Hill, she wanted to hear from Cherry Hill and the homeowners of Meadowbrook Glens in terms of finalizing that as to whether they would like a connection or not.
Mr. Quinn corrected a statement about the rear-yard setback at the Cherry Hill residents, under the Gateway East, it was only 30 feet; where the 75 feet came in was from the RM-2 ordinance, which really didnít apply specifically. He stated that everything was well out of the 30-foot Gateway East setback area.
Member Lorenzo stated that she appreciated that, but she believed that there was a lot of discretion in the ordinance for the Council to strongly suggest that 75 feet be maintained for natural area of woodlands. She stated that was her specific request.
Member Lorenzo stated that the row of front parking was not a big concern to her, the reason being that the City had been so inconsistent in town. Right across the street, Gateway Village, had a row of parking along the frontage. If you go to the west, City Center where Panera is had front-row parking. She knew Council had said it did not want front-row parking, she did not think it worked on a stand-alone site as well as it worked on Main Street. She said that Main Street was an animal of its own; it worked very well there. On stand-alone sites, such as Gateway Village or such as this, she did not see why the City could not have front-row parking. She stated that it was not that big a deal to her; she was not going to feel strongly about it and say they could not have that waiver. She frequented Main Street Village area a lot and thought, in terms of balance, if they would consider a similar treatment to that, like the wrought iron fence with plantings, so that there was consistency and symmetry when driving down Grand River. She thought that sometimes what was missing with those projects was consistency, particularly in terms of the aesthetics; they needed some kind of a theme.
Member Lorenzo stated that she agreed with the Department that there needed to be further study in regard to the shared parking. She stated that the City needed to make sure there was enough parking; they had been over the issue before in terms of land banking it instead of actually paving it over. She thought if the residential was not included in the shared parking study, that certainly needed to be done; Council needed better information on that before they confirmed that one way or another.
Member Lorenzo stated that she did not have a problem with what they proposed for the faÁade waiver; she actually had cultured stone on her house and it had held up very well. She stated that she had already addressed the mix; she would have liked to see a little bit more office, but it would not make or break her support of the project. She stated that some of the things were conditions that were necessary, like assurance that the work business area was going to be used as intended; obviously, if there was going to be an agreement, that was going to be needed in there. She said that the dumpsters and locations were extremely important; sanitary conditions. They did not want a mess out there.
Member Lorenzo stated that the sidewalks were supposed to be five feet back from the curb; in this instance, it was supposed to be a more urban development. As long as it was not a safety issue, the sidewalk adjacent to the curb was all right with her. She stated that she had addressed just about every issue and thanked them for attending tonight.
Member Nagy stated that her only real concern was, obviously, the wetlands and the trees; she did have a concern about Bishop Creek.
Barb McBeth, Planning Director, stated that the storm water would be discharged at a controlled rate, so that it would not rush into the ditch.
Member Nagy stated that she liked the site plan and the way they had the wall in the front.; across the street, they already had a wall with a fence, which she thought was unattractive and too concrete looking. She thought the landscape design was much more attractive. With regard to the pathway in the back of the property adjacent to Cherry Hill, she thought it was something the City required and she thought that could be a discussion that could be had. She stated that she was not concerned about any encroachment or the parking lot. One of the things she found interesting was that people mentioned noise; she was not sure what noise they were talking about. There were two residential units next to each other; there would be normal residential noise. She was sure there were concerns by the residents about lights, but from the site plan, they were not having big overhead lights. She liked the idea and wanted to enforce the idea that they met the tree requirements and that the variety be put back there for the opacity. She stated that, again, it was a residential unit next to a residential unit, and with all the mixture of trees and evergreens, she thought that it would be a nice buffer for both areas. She liked the way the front parking was; she wouldnít think about moving anything closer to Grand River. She stated that there had to be a flow; there was nothing like that along Grand River east of Novi Road all the way to Haggerty. She thought the faÁade was attractive and that the color of brick was nice; she had hoped that it would not be the dark brick that looked like an old schoolhouse. She stated that if people owned condos, there would not be a high degree of maintenance that the association dues would be paying for. With regard to the five feet back from the sidewalk, she agreed with the previous speaker; she didnít think it needed to be there. She read some of the comments and people were talking about exceptional; she usually agreed with the comments from Planning Commissioners and Planning Departments and really gave it a lot of thought, especially since it was called Gateway East. With all due respect, some of the things that had already been built in Gateway East she didnítí think were so innovative, namely something on the northeast corner was not innovative nor exceptional. She said she could not expect the project to be any more exceptional than it actually was, because it was taking into consideration to what was across the street and what was kitty-corner from it, taking the existing architecture and blending it in. In her mind, it was a higher quality than what existed at the present time. Her concern was the trees, which they already agreed that they would put in; she wanted to make sure that the flow was going to be controlled at Bishop Creek.
Ms. McBeth answered that was what was said in the engineering review letter.
Member Nagy stated that she had participated in River Day several times and had never seen anything about Bishop Creek being done, and there was something that needed to be done. She knew that some of the access to Bishop Creek would be on
private property, but she was sure the City could work that out with the owners. She thought it was the creek that when she was first on Planning Commission had a study done on it; the fish and things in it were high quality, and she would like to see some of the monies go to Bishop Creek restoration or cleanup.
CM-05-09-292 Moved by Nagy, seconded by Landry; CARRIED
UNANIMOUSLY: To approve the request of ADCO Group, LLC
for a proposed Special Development Option Concept Plan,
with the following: that the natural features of the buffer area
be enhanced to meet the opacity requirements of the City
ordinance, that the sidewalks do not have to be five feet back
from the curb, that the pathway on the buffer area adjacent to
Cherry Hill Road be removed, that mitigation of the wetlands be two to one ratio and on site, and whatever cannot
be mitigated on site, the money would be used for Bishop
Creek enhancement and improvements. The subject property
is located in Section 23, south of Grand River Avenue and
west of Meadowbrook Road in the GE (Gateway East) District.
The subject property is approximately 26.54 acres. The
applicant is proposing a 225 unit multiple-family residential
development with some retail/office, restaurant and live/work
buildings. Regarding the compliance with the intent of the
special development option that the project assemble several
small, long, narrow lots, that the proposal provide shared
parking, local commercial and residential uses provide a
mutually supportive transition to Main Street and Town Center,
that the proposed development include a residential
component, the development provides mixed uses, the
development incorporates live/work buildings and innovative
planning technique, that the development is generally
compatible with the neighboring properties, the revised
concept plan adequately considers adjacent land uses,
external traffic flow and access management. He also suggested by way of a friendly amendment that the proposal provide a public facility that was a pathway along Grand River Avenue. With respect to the eligibility of the concept plan, he would propose that it was generally compatible with the neighboring properties, that the proposed use would not place any substantial burdens upon the City utilities or services that would not occur using a standard development, and he believed they had a fiscal impact statement provided with the materials, that any redevelopment of this site for permitted use or uses permitted with an SDO plan would result in a material enhancement of the area, that the proposal would not have an adverse impact on the Master Plan, since it did call for mixed uses in this area, that the plan exceeds the minimum requirements for open space, which it does; that the site is proposed to be developed by one developer as a condominium, he believed that was the fact; relating to site
design standards, 225 residential units was an acceptable density, the mix of use and live/works buildings is innovative, the relationship of proposed uses to adjacent uses is acceptable, the applicant is considered the
users of the product in his design elements, the proposed development is less intense and of less mass than Main Street or Town Center area, and the limited amount of local commercial and office uses should provide goods and services to a smaller market area than is served by Main Street
or Town Center, the concept design generally coordinates with all adjacent property, the proposed setbacks from residential uses, including the 75-foot setback along the south property line are adequate, to waive the requirement for a six-foot berm along the south property line if the existing vegetation is proposed and saved and meets the opacity requirements, that all proposed utilities are proposed to be underground, and finally the nonresidential uses are not adjacent to neighboring residential uses. Add comments and additions of the staff and
consultant review letter; that Council incorporate the
variances as part of the contract documents, put 20 trees in
front and put 20 into the south side by Cherry Hill.
Member Gatt stated that he agreed almost totally with the previous two speakers and
congratulated Mr. Quinn on bringing forward a very exciting project for the City a
second time in the last few weeks. His law enforcement background told him that the
paths by Cherry Hill were not a good thing; they should be taken out to remove
temptation from anyoneís mind. He also agreed with the people who participated at
Audience Participation who lived on Cherry Hill who had lived there for such a long time;
he would hate to see a new development disturb their peace and hoped the builder
would work the homeownerís association there and mitigate any noise or any other
obstructions that they might have concerns with. Other than that, one of the
recommendations was that the City Council determine that the Final Plan meet the
pedestrian and vehicle safety standards of the City; that went without saying. With a
few little tweaks, it would get his full support.
Mayor Pro Tem Landry stated that the intent of the Gateway ordinance was for
someone to assemble the long, bowling alley-shaped parcels along Grand River, that
was why Council enacted it. For someone to assemble those and come up with a large,
Mixed-use project, that was pedestrian compatible was the first thing he looked at when
looking at any project coming forth under Gateway, especially under special
development. He said that the ordinance pushed anyone into the special development
option; it was really kind of difficult to develop under the principal permitted uses in
Gateway. He thought they had done a nice job there. Density was below what they
could have; that really impressed him, because as he looked at it, they were only seven
percent retail and eight percent office. To qualify as a true "mixed use", you had to have
10 percent of each one of those; if you had 10 percent of each one of those, density
could be 423 units. By being just a little under on each of those, density could be 233;
they were even under that at 225. He stated that Council constantly talked about
density and the strain on the infrastructure; for a project of that size to come in below
the allowed density was exactly what he was looking for. On open space, 25 percent
was required and they provided 29 percent. He said it did not look to him like they were
trying to shoehorn units into the project.
He agreed wholeheartedly with Member Lorenzo on the front-yard parking; it did not
bother him. It made sense to him that with the businesses, they were generally going
to be in and out, service type businesses; people wanted to know that in the rain, they
could park out front and run in and run out. He said along Grand River, as you
proceeded west to east, there was Main Street with front-yard parking, the complex with
Belle Tire with front-yard parking, Marty Feldman clearly had front-yard parking; he said
if you went the other way, OíBrien Funeral Home had front-yard parking. He did not see
any reason for that little island of nonfront-yard parking.
Mayor Pro Tem Landry stated that with respect to the facades, if you asked seven
people, there would be seven different answers on it. He thought they had met the
intent of the ordinance; personally, he would not want it to be all brick. He thought that
would look like an institution, so he liked the fact that they had broken it up. The
hardy board was okay with him. He personally liked the wall along the front; if bushes
were put along the front, half died and half lived, and it really hid some of the parking.
He talked to Member Paul about wetland mitigation, and it was his understanding that
she would propose, rather than an onsite wetland mitigation, that money be donated to
improve Bishop Creek rather than the developer actually doing the work. He asked if
that would constitute offsite mitigation if they just donated money in order for the Bishop
Creek to be repaired.
Mr. Schultz answered that it was an optional development, so if the developer agreed to
certain improvements, consistent that the Council dealt with the wetland permit
issue by basically removing the onsite mitigation requirement, it would be permitted. He
stated that it would have to be part of the agreement that it was going to happen, and
there would have to be some basis for the amount of payment in lieu of doing a wetland
Mayor Pro Tem Landry stated that if it was possible and Member Paul still proposed
that, he would be in favor of it; it would certainly kill two birds with one stone. He
thought it would help the people along Bishop Creek if the City would give them some
relief through private dollars there. He could certainly support getting rid of the
pedestrian connection behind to the south. He stated that the parking did not really
bother him; parking was deficient for two hours per weekday for one month out of the
year. He would rather see less impervious surface, rather than building another parking
lot for two hours one month out of the year. He would also be in support of some sort of
compliance for the live/work, probably in the condominium documents, so that the
association could really govern that. He thought it was a great idea, but there had to
be some way of ensuring compliance to that.
Mayor Pro Tem Landry stated that basically he agreed with everything in the motion,
except the mitigation onsite, which he would be eager to hear some more on in the
discussion. With that said, he wanted to add one thing. Because it was a special
development option, he believed they had to put some findings in the motion with
respect to compliance with the intent of the SDO district and demonstrative benefits.
Mr. Schultz stated that was true; it was one of those optional forms of development; you
didnít know what would happen, even though the motion was in favor of approval. In
terms of a sustainable development, this ordinance in particular talks very specifically
about Council making findings. He noticed that attached to the packet there were
findings that had been prepared as a suggestion through the Planning Department;
those ought to be looked at by the maker of the motion. The only other thing that he
thought the motion maker might consider was a specific reference to the fact that there
was a contract and that the contract would come back to Council and have in it a
description of all the waivers and deviations from the ordinance so that Council could
see it one more time clearly as to what was not being met. Administration would
propose, he believed it was done in the Hummer Agreement, a specific section of that
contract that said those particular provisions were being deviated for those particular
reasons right in the SDO agreement.
Mayor Pro Tem Landry stated that, in that case, he would like to ask for a friendly
amendment to the motion to include a number of things, first of all, that the contract did
indeed come back to City Council and list very specifically all of the variances so City
Council could look at that to make sure it complied; he would also suggest that the
following findings be added to the motion: First of all regarding the compliance with the
intent of the special development option that the project assemble several small, long,
narrow lots, that the proposal provide shared parking, local commercial and residential
uses provide a mutually supportive transition to Main Street and Town Center, that the
proposed development include a residential component, the development provides
mixed uses, the development incorporates live/work buildings and innovative planning
technique, that the development is generally compatible with the neighboring properties,
the revised concept plan adequately considers adjacent land uses, external traffic flow
and access management. He also suggested by way of a friendly amendment that the
proposal provide a public facility that was a pathway along Grand River Avenue. With
respect to the eligibility of the concept plan, he would propose that it was generally
compatible with the neighboring properties, that the proposed use would not place any
substantial burdens upon the City utilities or services that would not occur using a
standard development, and he believed they had a fiscal impact statement provided
with the materials, that any redevelopment of this site for permitted use or uses
permitted with an SDO plan would result in a material enhancement of the area, that the
proposal would not have an adverse impact on the Master Plan, since it did call for
mixed uses in this area, that the plan exceeds the minimum requirements for open
space, which it does; that the site is proposed to be developed by one developer as a
condominium, he believed that was the fact; relating to site design standards, 225
residential units was an acceptable density, the mix of use and live/works buildings is
innovative, the relationship of proposed uses to adjacent uses is acceptable, the
applicant is considered the users of the product in his design elements, the proposed
development is less intense and of less mass than Main Street or Town Center area,
and the limited amount of local commercial and office uses should provide goods and
services to a smaller market area than is served by Main Street or Town Center, the
concept design generally coordinates with all adjacent property, the proposed setbacks
from residential uses, including the 75-foot setback along the south property line are
adequate, to waive the requirement for a six-foot berm along the south property line if
the existing vegetation is proposed and saved and meets the opacity requirements, that
all proposed utilities are proposed to be underground, and finally the nonresidential
uses are not adjacent to neighboring residential uses.
Member Nagy stated that she would accept the friendly amendment.
Member Paul stated that she agreed with a lot of the comments that were just made
and the addendums that were placed. She did not know if there was an addendum to
put the comments and additions of the staff and consultant review letter be added to the
motion; that was the only small item she wanted to make, Item #16 in Concept Plan
Request. She agreed with mixing the pines so there would be some opacity for the
residents; she agreed that the sidewalk could be abutting the curb, and she also agreed
with the parking standards. In front of the north brick wall they had proposed, there was
a line of street trees, she knew that the City required that, and she asked if the street
trees abutting Grand River would be a problem with Oakland County and their road
Mr. Quinn answered that there was the potential that the Road Commission might
object; he stated that the potential for their objection would be lessened if there was a
stipulation that there were not going to be any evergreens because those had the most
deleterious effect on sight distance and also the spacing of those trees in close
proximity to the drive were such that you didnít get that picket fence effect with a line of
things placed in a row. He thought the Road Commission might allow the trees but
might not allow the number and might increase the spacing of them.
Member Paul stated that they were planning on widening Grand River in the very near
future; that was in the right-of-way. She wanted to see those 33 to 40 trees put where
the Cherry Hill residents were, that maybe they could use those on-site but just in a
different fashion; it would help the absorption of the water heading south and she
thought it would help long-term when the City had to actually do the cost of widening
Grand River, they would not be ripping out trees and then putting them in another area.
She proposed to leave the row of trees that would be added in front of the brick wall for
the right-of-way in the very near future when it was widened to five lanes and put them
to the southern portion for absorption purposes and also for the opacity purposes that
the Cherry Hill residents were looking for. She would like to make that as a friendly
Member Nagy stated that, with all due respect, she would not accept the one about the
trees because in asking the City Manager, near future was 10 years minimum.
Member Paul stated that she appreciated Member Nagyís comments and wanted to add
her point to the record and share her thoughts. She stated that they would eventually
have to put the trees in our City somewhere; if 40 trees were on the front of the site with
the very pretty wall, she did not think it would harm the City to put them to the rear of the
site for the residents to the rear and also for the absorption purposes. She said that
was just her thought.
Member Paul stated that Council needed to talk about pathways; she really wanted to
hear from the residents because it sounded like there were some issues, so right now
she thought Council should leave it off the site plan. She thought they should do the
mitigation of the wetland as much as possible on-site, but whatever they could not do on
that site, she thought it should be put into an escrow to levy that money with the Rouge
River to see if they could actually improve the Bishop Creek area where the residents
were. She spoke with Warren Jose, his comments were that they did the boaters in
front on the east side of his property. She said that the creek could literally go from
trickles to overflowing within one hour when there was a storm. She said one of his
comments was that the actual boaters would be moved because of the water flow being
so heavy in that area. He said that when they built the Singh property to the north of
him, the problem was that the water flow did not have the topcoat to go into the storm
drain, therefore, the runoff was going straight down Bishop Creek and the water flow
was intense. She said that he was looking for the enhancements, not to be deepening
the actual creek but actually stabilizing Bishop Creek with natural medium. She said
they might have to look just north of that site possibly where Singh Development was to
see what else they had to do. She thought they had an issue here and she did not want
to spend another $1-million dredging Meadowbrook Lake; that was her long-term
Member Nagy stated that Member Paul asked about funds to enhance Bishop Creek;
she would accept that as an amendment.
Member Paul stated that the hardy plank and the cultured stone did not bother her. She
was appreciative of the density being half of what it could be and would look forward to
having it come into our City.
Member Capello stated that he would not repeat comments that other Council Members
had made; he had one inquiry of Mr. Schultz and Mayor Pro Tem Landry. He listened
to their comments in setting forth the ground why it met the ordinance standard, but
there were several variances that were required that were set forth on pages 6 and 7.
He did not think that Council incorporated those variances into the motion, which
needed to be included in the final contract documents, starting on page 6 of the G
Revised Special Development Option Concept Plan. He said he would ask as a friendly
amendment that Council incorporate those variances as part of the contract documents.
Mayor Csordas asked if, in essence, if Member Capello was asking for approval of all of
Member Capello stated that as an amendment to the motion that Council needed to
include those variances.
Mr. Schultz stated that it was really the reason for suggesting that when it came back to
Council, they would see which ones were included by specific reference and they would
probably work from the very list that Member Capello was talking about. He stated that
to the extent that they were not inconsistent with the motion, they would include them.
Member Lorenzo stated that anything that was not described through the motion would
come back as being approved, then.
Mr. Schultz answered that it would be listed as a variance that was approved unless
there was specific discussion and comment in the motion.
Member Lorenzo stated that she just wanted to go through the ones that she was aware
of that she didnít think Council approved. From the Planning Staffís list, 1 through 22.
Member Capello stated that the one that he incorporated was 1 through 22, he didnít
know where it came from.
Member Lorenzo stated that hers was on page 6.
Member Capello agreed it was on page 6.
Member Lorenzo stated that the ones that were not approved were number 5, to
permit evergreen and ornamental trees to count as parking lot trees. She specifically
said if they wanted to use them, it was fine, but they still needed 110, not 48; number 8,
City Council waiver for lack of street trees throughout development. What Council was
saying was that they had to comply, so no waiver there. The mitigation on-site; the
mitigation was to be done on-site. She clarified the amendment to the motion was
whatever could not be accomplished on-site, the monies would be put to improvements
of Bishop Creek stabilization for the stream bank.
Mayor Csordas stated that he believed they agreed to a two-to-one ratio of on-site
Member Lorenzo stated that it was basically numbers 5, 8 and 22 that were not
Member Capello answered that everything but those was approved.
Member Nagy stated that, as the maker of the motion, she accepted that.
Mr. Schultz wanted to clarify that the format was the applicant proposing to dedicate
the Grand River right-of-way was still needed; he stated that it was silent essentially at
Mr. Quinn stated that it was his understanding that it would be 10 feet; the answer was
yes, it would be donated.
Mr. Schultz stated that it would be included in the agreement.
Member Capello stated that he agreed with all of the positive comments; some he did
not agree with but it was nothing to make a big deal of. He had one question for Mr.
Adorno Piccinini. He asked if the residential renderings, A, 3, 4, 5 and 6, were going to
be beefed up a bit and some of the big rooflines gotten rid of.
Mr. Piccinini answered that rooflines had not been changed; there was additional brick
placed on the buildings to meet the required percentages.
Member Capello stated that he was not talking about the faÁade; he was just talking
about the design of the residential buildings.
Mr. Piccinini answered that gables were put in for two of the units on the front and then
dormers put on there.
Member Capello stated that Council would not see as much of the roof when it came
back to them; that was all.
Mayor Csordas stated that the beautiful thing of going last was that he came with six
questions and they were answered probably four or five times; it looked like a
tremendous project; congratulations.
Member Nagy stated that she understood the concept about the Oakland County Road
Commission and eventually it would be a street that would be widened, but since it was
going to be at least 10 years before that happened and there would be some mature
trees, so maybe instead of putting 40 trees in front, they could put 20 trees in front and
take the next 20 and put them into the south side by Cherry Hill.
Mr. Piccinini answered if it fit, absolutely.
Member Nagy amended her motion to put 20 trees in front and put 20 into the south
side by Cherry Hill.
Mr. Schultz stated that the site plan would come back, if Council wanted to reserve that
Member Lorenzo stated that she would like the Administration to contact the
homeowners of Meadowbrook Glens and get a confirmation on whether or not they
want any sidewalk connection between this project and their subdivision; she was not
talking about behind the homes, because that was gone as far as they were concerned.
She was talking about that other connection that they were possibly putting in.
Mr. Helwig stated, just to be clear, he thought that was part of the pathway and would
Member Lorenzo stated that she thought there was a connection off to the side.
Mr. Helwig answered that was the beginning of the pathway, as he saw it, on the far
Member Lorenzo stated that was fine.
Roll Call Vote on CM-05-09-292 Yeas: Landry, Capello, Gatt, Lorenzo,
Nagy, Paul, Csordas
2. Approval of the request of the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions for an Unlisted Use Determination under Section 2523. The applicant is requesting a determination on the appropriateness of a building with multiple residences, a chapel and offices in the One Family Residential (R-1 through R-4) Zoning Districts.
CM-05-09-293 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Gatt: CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve the request of the Pontifical Institute for Foreign
Missions for an Unlisted Use Determination under Section 2523. The
applicant is requesting a determination on the appropriateness of a
building with multiple residences, a chapel and offices in the One
Family Residential (R-1 through R-4) Zoning Districts.
Roll call vote on CM-05-09-293 Yeas: Capello, Gatt, Lorenzo, Nagy, Paul,
Mayor Pro Tem Landry had one clarification and said the motion was not made subject to rezoning it from R-4 to R-1, correct. Member Lorenzo said all it is is a request of the use determination. Mayor Pro Tem Landry said the zoning stays R-4. Member Lorenzo said that was all they were asked to do tonight.
3. Approval of Zoning Map Amendment 18.653 from Amson-Dembs Development for rezoning of property in Section 9, north of Twelve Mile Road and east of West Park Drive, from General Industrial (I-2) to Light Industrial (I-1). The subject property is 2.3 acres.
CM-05-09-294 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Paul: CARRIED
UNANIMOUSLY: To approve Zoning Map Amendment 18.653
from Amson-Dembs Development for rezoning of property in
Section 9, north of Twelve Mile Road and east of West Park
Drive, from General Industrial (I-2) to Light Industrial (I-1). The
subject property is 2.3 acres. The following conditions will exist: 1) it would be in conformance with the Master Plan, 2) that Light Industrial uses are compatible with the surrounding land uses, 3) adequate infrastructure exists to support the Light Industrial use and 4) that the Light Industrial use is less intense than uses permitted in the existing I-2 General Industrial District.
Mayor Pro Tem Landry stated that the conditions would be that: 1) it would be in conformance with the Master Plan, 2) that Light Industrial uses are compatible with the surrounding land uses, 3) adequate infrastructure exists to support the Light Industrial use and 4) that the Light Industrial use is less intense than uses permitted in the existing I-2 General Industrial District. The maker and the seconder agreed.
Roll call vote on CM-05-09-294 Yeas: Gatt, Lorenzo, Nagy, Paul, Csordas,
4. Consideration to award the Fall 2005 Street Tree Planting bid to Arbor Green Landscaping, the low bidder, in the amount of $237,440.
CM-05-09-295 Moved by Nagy, seconded by Landry: CARRIED
UNANIMOUSLY: To award Fall 2005 Street Tree Planting bid to Arbor
Green Landscaping, the low bidder, in the amount of $237,440.
Member Paul asked why the fall and spring planting wasnít going out for bid at the same time. Mr. Auler said to do them both would require almost 2,400 trees and he was concerned about being able to get that many trees planted before the winter. Also, in the fall there are about 12 species available and in the spring there are 20 to 25. Member Paul repeated her question and asked why a portion couldnít be done now and a portion later. Mr. Auler said that was an option and they could request that Council consider that.
Member Capello said since the money has been allocated for spring and fall and there are subdivisions that want to get their street trees planted, he didnít see why the homeowner couldnít go through Mr. Printz and get the tree approved. Why canít the homeowner put the tree in now and get reimbursed up to a maximum of $250.00 when it comes time to put the trees in their subdivision. He said it is not costing us any money, we may save money and they are getting their trees in now.
Member Lorenzo said she agreed with Member Capello. For instance, if Lochmoor Village is going to receive trees next spring then it would be next spring that they would be reimbursed for what they had planted. She offered a friendly amendment regarding this with a dollar amount up the amount that the City would pay. Member Capello suggested $250.00 and Member Nagy didnít think that was reasonable and thought it should be higher.
Member Lorenzo said the friendly amendment is to further clarify the tree replacement policy by allowing reimbursement to homeowners who chose to front the cost of tree replacement earlier then their scheduled tree replacement and that they will be reimbursed by the City at the scheduled tree replacement time up to the amount of $300.00 with subject to approval by the department. The motion maker accepted the amendment and the seconder accepted it for the purposes of discussion.
Member Capello asked Mr. Helwig if this would be possible. Mr. Helwig said if Council wanted to go in this direction he suggested that the reimbursement amount be the bid amount that the City gets in the spring or whenever they are doing the reimbursement. He said this can be done but could get out of hand pretty fast. It could be a real bear to do all the inspection and they wouldnít have the benefit of the Cityís warranty. If we are talking about under 100 this could be done. Then it is going to get beyond the season coming up and reimbursement could be way down the road and then we have created more ill will than good will. There are a couple of hardship cases and another approach would be to solve the problems of those who have communicated with the City, or we can try to make this work.
Member Capello said by having a prior approval they would have to come to the City and ask what species of tree the City wants in their subdivision and then they have to advise the City who the installer would be and provided a guarantee just like the City would get from an installer. So, if it is not a reputable installer and there is no guarantee the City would not reimburse them for the tree. He suggested giving them a list from the bid list for them to chose an installer since these are the people that the City does business with. He said we are not allocating this money until the spring and people want to do this now. It is more so for the people that arenít going to get their trees until next year and they are loaning the City money, so to speak, right now.
Mr. Helwig asked is this the planting plan Council had before them before deciding the policies. Member Lorenzo said yes. Mr. Helwig said we are talking about those 1,600 locations and said the motion could specify that and he thought this could be done. Member Lorenzo agreed and said her concern was the residents are asking why they canít be reimbursed now. She felt that could really get out of hand because if everyone was reimbursed now we would be encouraging everybody to replant their trees now and then if everyone was reimbursed immediately there wouldnít be any money to replant any other trees. If this can be worked this way it is fair because she was concerned about showing any favoritism. She understood what Mr. Helwig was saying about a few hardships but she didnít want this to turn into the squeaky wheel gets the grease. She said if fair and consistent is those 1,600 trees the City is going to plant between now and next spring that is fine with her and is the motion.
Member Nagy said she hesitated about the reimbursement because she is concerned about it getting out of hand. She believed there were a few residents who sent e-mails and one who sent a letter. She thought those people who planted a tree should be reimbursed. She didnít think this should be a policy and be encouraged. People might want to see their trees planted now but it is more appropriate to plant in the spring because there is more variety and wetness. She commented that some of the residents who have dead trees on their street side is because they were never watered. She really discouraged tree planting by residents and said the City was going to plant an awful lot. It is going to get out of hand, is not fair to the administration and she didnít think that the forester could keep up with it. She thought this would be best done all under one roof. The residents who have contacted us should be reimbursed and at the present time because the trees are planted. This should not be encouraged and it could be a nightmare.
Member Paul said she is in favor of trying to get all these trees in and everyone is anxious. However, there is a multitude of people who have replaced their trees. She said Council had received a letter from a man and he was very angry but after talking to the legal staff about replacing these trees after they have already put them in in the past, and now we are saying we can approve it now for 6 months is really being on gray ground. She asked what the legal staff thought about the people who have replaced their trees in the past 3, 5, or 10 years. Are they going to be looking for money and is this fair.
Mr. Schultz thought this is a separate policy that the Council is considering going forward. There is a requirement in the law to treat people who are in the same situation the same way. He said if Council went in this direction as a policy matter he thought it would be permitted and our position would be that the City is talking about a different set of people with a different set of issues here today as the Councilís moving forward with those issues. He said, obviously, the policy question is the tougher one and the legal question he thought Council could come up with an argument why this Council could go in a different direction moving forward.
Member Paul asked Administration if someone puts in a tree incorrectly would the City have to take it down and replace it. She said if opening up this Pandoraís Box she wanted clarification on the amendment. She understood the time limit being put on it but it did not give her the full comfort to move forward on that. She said Novi has one forester and it would be a lot of "windshield" time going house to house to inspect trees placed by residents. She thought Council was acting a little fast on that portion of it, maybe go forward with this component and then talk about what they want to do. Member Paul wasnít sure she wanted to go to $300 a tree cause some people will put in a smaller tree and take the money.
Member Gatt agreed with Member Paul and this being a Pandoraís Box and thought Council should stay with the motion and proposal proposed by the City.
Member Nagy said if there was a discussion between the resident and our Administration and it was their understanding, in the case of the letter Council received, they would be reimbursed and administration says their understanding is correct, then letís reimburse them. We are going to get in trouble if we keep saying we have a policy to do this and this. The whole thing about the street replacement is the Ash Borer disease and not because three years ago a Maple tree died in front of their house. She felt Member Paul made a great point.
Member Lorenzo asked for clarification because she saw this as very easy and not something that somebody would have to inspect, etc. She saw this as someone decided to replace their street tree before the City schedule to replace it and as their subdivision is scheduled the City would reimburse, with receipts, them up to the amount that the bid for each tree was approved on. Member Lorenzo said for instance, Lochmoor Village, if Lochmoor Village is on the schedule to be replaced next spring then next spring, when the bids are approved, Council would have an amount for each tree and any Lochmoor Village resident, including the resident that contacted Council, would then be reimbursed up to the approved amount, providing they submitted receipts. She said there would be an accounting situation but she didnít see this as a situation about inspections, etc. She just saw this as a reimbursement. She asked if she was being overly simplistic about this. She said they should have a warranty from whoever replaced the tree.
Mr. Helwig said administration would do whatever the Council decides. The end result they are trying to achieve is an alive, healthy, certain size tree of a species that will
survive for a long time. He said that is far more than a reimbursement program. If 1,600 trees are going to be planted in the spring and you are trying to authorize some of those to be planted in the fall for reimbursement in the spring we can figure out how to do that. However, we have to validate the quality of the tree, the size of the tree, the planting of the tree and if something happens to that tree, a car hits it, who will replace it. So there are other issues. He said one reason they landed on the 800 this fall in addition to species and so forth was we would not have to add staff. He said they felt they could digest 800, learn from that and maybe in the spring they could do all 1,600 without adding staff. Mr. Helwig said they thought they would have to add somebody, outside consultant, to do 1,600 in the spring. So it does get more complicated.
Member Lorenzo said with all of this discussion she would withdraw her friendly amendment. She thought it was a nice gesture but felt it could be to complicated. She thought people should be discouraged from planting the trees and inform them that they will not be reimbursed, through every channel available.
Mayor Csordas said he appreciated all the comments and understood the spirit of the motion, it is noble and very well intended but agreed it would be too complicated.
Roll call vote on CM-05-09-295 Yeas: Lorenzo, Nagy, Paul, Csordas,
Landry, Capello, Gatt
5. Approval of Zoning Ordinance Text Amendment 18.199 to amend Ordinance No. 97-18, as amended, the City of Novi Zoning Ordinance, Section 2505 to modify parking standards for shopping centers larger than 1,000,000
square feet. SECOND READING
CM-05-09-296 Moved by Paul, seconded by Nagy: CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve Zoning Ordinance Text Amendment 18.199 to
amend Ordinance No. 97-18, as amended, the City of Novi
Zoning Ordinance, Section 2505 to modify parking standards
for shopping centers larger than 1,000,000
square feet. SECOND READING
Roll call vote on CM-05-09-296 Yeas: Nagy, Paul, Csordas, Landry,
Capello, Gatt, Lorenzo
6. Approval of the revised City of Novi Investment Policy (to update List of Approved Financial Institutions) and the Statement of Investment Policy, Objectives and Guidelines of the City of Novi Retiree Health Care Fund.
CM-05-09-297 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Nagy; CARRIED
UNANIMOUSLY: To approve the revised City of Novi
Investment Policy (to update List of Approved Financial
Institutions) and the Statement of Investment Policy,
Objectives and Guidelines of the City of Novi Retiree Health
Roll call vote on CM-05-09-297 Yeas: Paul, Csordas, Landry, Capello, Gatt,
7. Approval of Resolution for Budget Amendment 2006-2.
CM-05-09-298 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Nagy; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve Resolution for Budget Amendment 2006-2.
Roll call vote on CM-05-09-298 Yeas: Csordas, Landry, Capello, Gatt, Lorenzo,
AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION - None
Council recessed at 9:05 P.M.
Council reconvened at 9:20 P.M.
MATTERS FOR COUNCIL ACTION Ė Part II
8. Approval of the Agreement between the City of Novi and Oakland County for Delineation of Relationship and Responsibilities for the 800 MHz Radio System for Courts and Law Enforcement Management Information System (CLEMIS).
CM-05-09-299 Moved by Landry, seconded by Nagy; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve the Agreement between the City of Novi and Oakland
County for Delineation of Relationship and Responsibilities for the
800 MHz Radio System for Courts and Law Enforcement
Management Information System (CLEMIS).
Roll call vote on CM-05-09-299 Yeas: Landry, Capello, Gatt, Nagy, Csordas
Absent: Lorenzo, Paul
9. Continued Discussion of use for Federal Forfeiture Funds Ė Approval of
Second Round Expenditure Recommendations.
Mr. Helwig said Acting Chief Molloy and other top commanders are present. He said Council had been provided several reports since the August 1st discussion, which have emphasized the growth of the work load in the Police Department, the calls for service, the more challenging nature of providing for our more urban environment. He said they
have brought Council more than preliminary information about the firearms range. Mr. Helwig said he and Chief Shaeffer spent time walking the grounds on that issue before his passing. Acting Chief Molloy has spent time with an architectural firm just gathering more information. He was requesting more information from Council regarding that.
Mr. Helwig said they had provided Council with information about a couple critical needs, one of which Council had just approved as part of Item 8. This allows them to proceed now that Oakland County is on a fast track with implementing the 800 MHZ
trunk system. He said Acting Chief Molloy would highlight for Council this Edge laptop technology replacement that is a small amount of money. Then, we also have this item of paying off the Police Department building debt where Ms. Smith-Roy has communicated with the Federal officials and since the money was used for bricks and
mortar that is another item Council can consider in terms of a benefit to the General Fund. Also included is Chief Shaefferís memo of August 2nd indicating what is expected in terms of additional funds. Mr. Helwig said in talking with Mayor Pro Tem Landry last week this matter came up, and he asked that they double check on the time line for when more funds would be coming in. Acting Chief Molloy has done that and they have heard six to twelve months. This next total of $2.4 million that we are expecting the clock couldnít start on that until the simultaneous raids had been conducted and they could affix names to the forfeitures.
Acting Chief Molloy said the only thing he would highlight was what was just approved with the 800 MHZ was for the funding for the siren and radio control at change over. He said it was imperative that it be done right away in order to facilitate the full implementation of the 800 MHZ system. Secondly, is the laptop Edge technology conversion. He said currently they are operating on a CD PD package and are going to lose that technology affective December 31, 2005. He said they have been in discussion with Cingular Wireless, which is the only game in town, since they merged with Ameritech and AT&T. He said they have a window of opportunity up until October 31st to enter into an agreement with them along with the 42 other law enforcement agencies throughout the county. If that isnít done by December 31st we will lose the ability for our staff to write their police reports from the vehicles, which would make it necessary that they be in the building. He would rather have them on the street, in the cars where they are better servicing the citizenry. If this is done by October 31st there is a cost savings of over $18,000 in laptop modems and air cards for our investigators. He fully supported, hopefully, an additional two officers to the Police Department and that information is in Council packets. He said they felt they were meeting the growing challenges of being a destination community and they are seeing the population growth at about 1,100 citizens a year when looking at the past decade.
Member Nagy said they were all excited about receiving the forfeiture funds. She commented that she liked the proposal of paying off the Police Department building debt bond because that would add about $300,000 to the General Fund, which means salaries for the additional police officers could be paid after the first year. She thought if would be a good idea also to put the firefighter in place too and would still have money left over. She commented that Novi is increasing not only in population but also in more serious crime. She really like this idea and felt it was a necessity and important to keep on top of new technology such as the computers and laptops. Also, money would be
saved if going in with everyone else. Member Nagy thought this was a really nice layout and would definitely help the Police Department. Her last discussion with Chief Shaeffer was regarding these forfeiture funds and she thought the Police Department knew better than Council what they really need.
Member Gatt said he was talking with the Sheriff of Oakland County today about firearms. He asked what the Novi Police Officers carry. Acting Chief Molloy said the pistols they carry are either the Glock model 22 or model 23 and they are 40 caliber pistols. Member Gatt asked when they got those guns and Chief Molloy said early to
mid 1990ís, 1992 or 1993, as they transitioned in that fourteen to sixteen month period. Member Gatt agreed with Member Nagy that the Police Department knew best how to spend their money. One thing he didnít see and would like to see investigated, if the Police Department agreed, is an upgrade to the state of the art weapon that the Oakland
County Sheriff recommends. It is the Sig Sauer and Member Gatt wanted the officers to have the best equipment possible. He said the Glocks could be traded in for a Sig Sauer for a very minimal amount, possibly $200 to $300 per officer. He said he would like to see something about what Chief Molloy and his department would recommend the next time this is discussed.
Member Gatt said he could not support paying off the bond because we would then divert the money into the General Fund with good intentions, but already a firefighter was mention. He said there is no guarantee that the next Council would honor the commitment this Council might make. They might say they understand the money was for police officers but a new roof is needed on the building. He couldnít support this because future Councils couldnít be bound to use the money for the Police Department.
He would like it to go to the Police Departmentís wish list. As far as tonightís funds, Member Gatt said he would go along with Acting Chief Molloy regarding the laptops and didnít want to see the officers lose the ability to do field reporting. That is a cutting edge technology and the City is one of the few departments in the county that has it.
Member Gatt said on the list for Council Consideration, Item 6 is Four Unmarked Vehicles, Replacement. At the last meeting where funds were allocated they did pay money for many different patrol cars, because it was a contractual item. He said the unmarked cars are not a contractual item but there are many detectives driving cars that are very old. Chief Molloy said the last time there were new unmarked vehicles was in 1999 and prior to that was in 1996. He said four detectives are driving retired patrol cars that were retired because they are over 80,000 mile contractual limit. They are sent out for a paint job but they really are beaten down and the quality of them is poor. Member Gatt asked Council to imagine driving a car that is driven 24/7 and Member Gatt stated he could support the laptops and police cars.
Member Gatt said he wanted to see more plans on the pistol range. The pistol range he envisions is underground because it would have the perception of being safer. On top of the police range, he would like a new training center that the Police Department desperately needs. The existing training center, although fairly new, wasnít built the way everyone expected it to be built and he didnít think it served the needs of the Police Department now and certainly not in the future. He asked to see some concrete figures before being asked to commit to spending more of the forfeiture funds. He would like to see the "wish list" completed after all the funds are in.
Member Lorenzo supported what Mr. Helwig and Chief Molloy recommended, that being the two police officers, the laptop edge conversion, the 800 MHZ radio conversion and the paying off of the Police Department building debt bonds. She would be prepared to make a motion to do that. She supported the two police officers, but was very concerned about where the funding would come from, for the one additional police officer, to fund the salaries beyond the first year. She said it was not fiscally responsible to add employees without having the future costs evaluated and knowing that they could be paid for. She said this accomplishes that and it also accomplishes in the next item
where she would be proposing to provide for additional public safety service improvements in the Fire Department. She thought paying off the building and adding $300,000 to the General Fund as advantageous to public safety from both the police and fire side of things and stretching our dollars so that both could be done.
Member Lorenzo said it always makes sense to pay off your debt early and save on the interest payments. She understood that some Council members were concerned that there might not be enough funds for the brick and mortar they are proposing, the pistol range. She asked Council to trust the judgment of former Police Chief Doug Shaeffer. It was his last memo to us August 2nd and she felt that everyone at the Council table trusted his judgment explicitly in terms of what the needs were. Member Lorenzo said Chief Shaeffer lived these forfeiture funds for over a year and was very proud of himself and his department. She asked Council to trust Chief Shaeffer one more time. She said we will get the other money for the pistol range, it is coming. She would be willing to say, this evening, that the intention is when the funds are received that they are to be put toward the pistol range in order to get support tonight for the four items mentioned and particularly paying off the debt. Then we would have the money to pay the extra police officers salaries and possibly stretch those dollars for additional public service improvements in our Fire Department.
CM-05-09-300 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Nagy; MOTION CARRIED:
To approve Item #5, the two officers, Item # 8, the
laptop edge conversion, $1 million in escrow for the firing
range and $1.2 million in escrow to pay off the debt fund.
Member Nagy amended the motion to include the four unmarked vehicles. Member Lorenzo said she wanted to start with these four items and then they could do that. She said there is an additional $286,212 and if they wanted to add the vehicles she would be agreeable. Member Nagy asked if the $286,212 was all they had to spend. Member Lorenzo said after these four items.
Mr. Helwig said, for clarity, the balance being discussed is $2,907,153.00 and Item 9 was approved in Matters for Council Action #8 this evening. He said they just had to include whatever else they wished to include.
Member Capello said he looked at the motion and said it looked like they approved the agreement but not the allocation of funds. He asked if it was his opinion that the $31,530 had already been allocated. Mr. Helwig said they specifically added it to the
motion sheet if they would look at the last sentence. He said they ordered it before this discussion so that It would be clear that Council was taking care of everything associated with the 800 MHZ system before they came to the discussion. Member Capello said then Item #9 has already been done and Mr. Helwig said that was his advice. Member Capello said the last few times talking about the forfeiture funds they had talked strongly about the firearms range and it had been one of their major goals. Member Capello asked if the Police Department had acquired any information for the Council. Acting Chief Molloy said they have. They visited and/or contacted over eleven different pistol ranges in the area and prior to this discussion received a complimentary proposal from an architect.
Acting Chief Molloy explained the proposal by showing the existing training center. He explained the drawings. He said the existing training center would have a glass vestibule so you wouldnít have to go outside to access the pistol range. In discussions with this architect the initial building would be about 140 by 140 feet and did not include
extra space for a firearms training system room, which a lot of the ranges visited did have. He said it is highly recommended that a firearms training system room be provided. Currently, the firearms training system located in the emergency operations center/training center. It takes time to set that up and tear it down. If they receive approval for a range they would add a 20 by 30 foot room on to the actual pistol range so it could be set up at all times. He said it was valuable training for female officers who are pregnant or officers who have a disability and canít be exposed to the lead they can go through the simulated training in lieu of sending them to a firearms range. The costs are estimated at about $1.5 to $2 million. One architect said there are some increased costs due to the events in the Gulf Coast area, which would be noticed later this year and early next. They would also look at about a $90,000 increase in armor plating due to the war in Iraq.
Acting Chief Molloy said they are looking at an eight position range, which means there are eight separate lanes for the officers to fire. Typically what most police ranges do, is they donít use the exterior two lanes. They use the six so there are no ricochets off the way. They would incorporate that with a rubber backstop trapping that would collect the bullets at the end, which seems to be the standard for about 90% of ranges in the area. He said they are looking to incorporate all of that into a very nice range and he thought when it was sent out for proposal and/or do a needs assessment that they would come in a take a look at exactly what was needed.
Member Capello asked about different features. Acting Chief Molloy said different features would include a retrievable system. Some ranges have the targets posted at the far end of the range where officers are required to walk up and look at them. Most modern ranges would have a retrievable system so the officer could make the targets go and come closer and would edge and face. Some newer ranges also have a "running man target", which at the end of the range there would be a post to put a target on that would simulate a person running and then the officer would shoot at that as it traversed across the range. These are the technologies available that the officers currently donít have at the Farmington range where they practice. He said pop up targets have been discussed but they were not seeing that in research with local ranges because on an indoor range you canít really have a real pop up target where there is a metal object that
is coming up because there would be ricochet that could be a safety hazard. He said the officers decision making skills would be improved with the edging and facing because they could make the "shoot, donít shoot" scenario.
Member Capello asked if he had done enough research to be ready to go out with some RFPís to get some ideas of what the design and engineering would cost. Acting Chief Molloy said he thought they had and besides other ranges they had also contacted the FBI. He also had done some initial research with the International Association of Chiefs of Police and he had looked at some models as far as facility development and the different stages to go through as far as planning. Obviously, with our current campus and financial ability with the forfeiture funds there are a lot of them they could skip because of budgetary concerns, acquisition of land and there were issues the architect
brought up informally. They were very concerned about the soil that is there because a lot of that soil was relocated when they were building this building. He thought there might have to be some soil borings to determine how safe the ground is. He said they
visited an underground range and they had some water issues but he felt with the proper architectural design that could be abated.
Member Capello asked if he had looked at any education and training facilities. Acting Chief Molloy said he had not.
Mayor Pro Tem Landry said he would not support the motion in its present form because it included Item #11. He thought the payoff of the bond was an excellent idea and he could see himself supporting that eventually. However, he didnít think there was a need to spend all the money just because we have it. Itís a great problem to have and we can all disagree but he would prefer to wait until all the money comes in to spend it. We have two years after receipt to spend it. He wanted to see the firing range get built and wanted to see some numbers and options on the firing range rather than spend the money and limit ourselves on the range. He would rather make all the decisions at once. He said he would agree to the two police officers, the laptops at $17,000 and the unmarked vehicles. It made more sense to him to wait until all the money comes in and make the decision at that time, because right now it is an if come maybe. He would not support the present motion.
Mr. Helwig said if there is any mystery about how the Administration feels about the firearms range he wanted to eliminate that because after they received Councilís policy direction on August 1st they took it very seriously and rolled up their sleeves. He said they had a significant meeting at police headquarters with Chief Shaeffer, Deputy Chief Molloy, Lt. McNamara, Lt. Lindberg and staff from our office. Clearly this was not something on our drawing board until the forfeiture funds. He said he came away from that meeting feeling very strongly that there would be a major operational benefit to our department on a regular basis having our own firearms range, given the funds were there. Mr. Helwig still felt that the funds would be there to do the firearms range and he would like to get direction tonight to proceed with a Request for Proposals that would include the needs assessment, state of the art, etc. He didnít want anyone guessing where the Police Command and the Administration stand on this subject.
Member Paul said she had done a lot of work regarding the forfeiture funds and she and Acting Chief Molloy had a tour the day Chief Shaeffer died. She said they had a very lengthy discussion and she wanted to share her thoughts. She said one police officer was approved this budget year and we donít have the ability to pay for another one without paying down the debt. She would support two police officers if the debt is paid down because then she has the confirmed thought that someone wonít be laid off a year from now. Many counties around this county and this State have been laying off police officers. She didnít want to pay for training for someone for a year and then tell them we canít support them any longer and have to let them go. She said she would not do that and she didnít want the taxpayers to ever pay the burden of this debt with $7 million possibly coming into this City for the Police Department. She wants to pay down the debt and then she would have the two police officers that she could pay for. She would support the laptops and the radio conversions. Member Paul said she would not support the unmarked vehicles. She asked how many vehicles were in the back of the
police department from the drug money and how many would be retained by us. Acting Chief Molloy said possibly seizing two vehicles. A 1998 Lincoln LS and a large conversion van and the remainder of the vehicles have been turned back over to the
U.S. Marshal Service. He said, unfortunately, due to the large amount of money owed on them and/or the fact that there might have been an innocent ownership claim, with the exception of the Lincoln and the van, the vehicles have been turned over to the DEA or the U.S. Marshal Service for their disposal.
Member Paul said then we could have two vehicles without spending any of these funds. Acting Chief Molloy said yes, but they have to wait for them to take their course through the forfeiture system. She said she was willing to wait on those because if we do have these two then they can see what other kinds they want and go out to bid at that time. She is willing to talk about a firing range and asked how much the City was paying to rent the facilities currently being used for a year. Acting Chief Molloy said the maximum budget is about $1,800 a year. Ms. Smith-Roy provided him with figures and it is generally around $1,500 to $1,600 per year. $1,800 is figuring two times a month twelve months a year. He said there are times when they have to cancel the range for that day and there is no expense. They also pay $400 per day twice a month to Canton Township to use an outdoor range. It comes to about $9,600 to $10,000 a year and they will continue to use that even if they build their own firearms range. It is used once a month for police snipers because they have to qualify at long ranges of 100 to 200 yards with their rifles. Obviously, they are not going to do that on a 25 yard range. They also send their officers outside to qualify with their patrol rifles, Sig 551 and 552. The intent behind purchasing these rifles, and he knew it because Chief Shaeffer said it over and over especially after the Ford/Wixom shooting, we have to have the ability to act and lay down fire at a long range. Even thought they could be used in a new indoor range they still have to qualify with those at least once a year outdoors because the course is a 100 yard course where you have to shoot from different positions and a different number of yards. He thought they could save $2,400 to $3,000 per year in the reduced cost at Canton and do some of the shooting here indoors at a firing range.
Member Paul said right now we are spending about $10,000 for outdoor and might get down to $7,000. She said we are talking about spending $1.5 to $2 million on a shooting range when we only spend about $20,000 a year. She said thatís how much
the maintenance will be for that building. She said she would not support a shooting range if the debt is not paid down. She went to Livonia and Farmington Hills to see how our police station looks in comparison and she gained a lot of knowledge. She said they had the foresight to have a basement that their firing ranges is in, their roll call is there and their physical fitness training. We donít have that capability with the existing building.
Member Paul said the other thing not on the list is that there are windows that are $50,000 that have been leaking, which cause repair and carpet cleaning, etc. She thought that was a very important component because we are going to have to do that anyways, and thatís on the current building. She said in fairness to the taxpayers she believed they had to have the $50,000 included in with that because she didnít want to pay anymore maintenance to repair the leakage and the windows. She thought the bond had to be paid down to have the two police officers. She was in favor of the laptop Edge conversion and the radios and there are so many other things here. However,
until those things are done first she would not do the shooting range but she would commit to do the range if those five items are paid for. She would support the motion.
Mayor Csordas told Acting Chief Molloy that his September 1, 2005 report is extremely impressive and that he appreciated it. It was very, very well done and he said congratulations. Mayor Csordas said he couldnít imagine anything more important than buying down the debt. It is time to repay the taxpayers for the support they gave the police department on that building fund. He said putting anything above that didnít make any sense. Mayor Csordas said you talk about $2.4 million but the numbers that were run were $300,000 benefit to the General Fund for 11 years and that is $3,300,000 in additional revenue that future Councils can spend on a lot of things. The gun range will come eventually but to put the pay off of the building debt bonds makes no sense. The taxpayers deserve that. He said he couldnít understand spending $2 million on something that costs the City less than $10,000. He appreciated that this recommendation came forward with no political influence, because that is another big, big plus. He commented that was so impressive to him and he didnít know how to thank them enough for doing that. Mayor Csordas said he would support the motion because he will always support refunding money back to the taxpayers of the City before he would support spending something that can come in time, and the money will be there. He noted he really appreciated their efforts and how they operate. He said Acting Chief Molloy was a very impressive young man. Mayor Csordas asked the Clerk to restate the motion.
Ms. Cornelius said the motion is to approve the four recommended items. It was later clarified to include the laptop edge conversion, additional officer, 800 MHZ Radio, paying off the debt and four unmarked vehicles.
Member Lorenzo said she did not include the four unmarked vehicles. There was discussion but they were not added. Ms. Cornelius said she thought when Member Nagy asked about including the vehicles Member Lorenzo accepted the amendment. Member Lorenzo said she may have for a second but what she wanted to do was keep it clean with those three or four items. She said if they wanted to add the building improvement as a separate motion that can be done. She hoped to appeal to Council to reconsider their position if they are not going to vote for this. In addition to what Mayor Csordas said, she would not be able to support two police officers if the debt is not paid off and get the money for it. She said that would be a shame to the citizens of this
community to not add two more police officers on the street when we know in a short period of time the funds will be available. She said that is why she asked Council to trust Chief Shaefferís instincts and recommendations one more time. Chief Shaeffer knew the City would receive the money, the Deputy Chief can verify the money is coming. She didnít feel it made sense not to trust what our administrators and former Police Chief has told them, and it would delay the officers on the street. She appealed to Council to vote for this motion so the officers can be put on the street and the debt paid down at the same time.
Member Nagy agreed with what Mayor Csordas and Member Lorenzo said and she relayed her last conversation with Chief Shaeffer. One of the things they talked about was the fact that the City would be receiving substantial monies. She said they talked about prioritizing. They talked about the shooting range but she thought the way the
Chief was as a person who cared so much about this community his priority, in her conversation with him, was there is plenty of time for that. He said there is going to be money down the road. However, Member Nagy said to give back to the taxpayer in a
compounded way of 1) paying off the debt because there is a lot of interest on that and to delay it and keep paying interest is ridiculous and 2) to give back to the community again by putting police officers on the street. She also felt there is time for all of that because the money will all be there. She said the priority and the obligation in her mind is to those who live in this community and their needs should be taken into account. She said that is what Chief Shaefferís conversation with her entailed. She would like to see the Council carry out his thought processes in terms of our community.
Mayor Pro Tem Landry said he was prepared to vote to put two police officers on the street tonight. He said he didnít think the officers should be tied to paying off the debt and didnít think one had anything to do with the other. He didnít think it was a matter of priority but did think it was a matter of timing. He didnít know why the money had to be spent right now. He thought they should wait until the money came in, prioritize and spend it at that time. He didnít want to spend it all right now.
Member Capello said if this does not pass to pay off the bond tonight, it does not mean we are never going to pay the bond off. He didnít think the timing was right to pay the bond off and felt they could pay the bond off in six or twelve months when the money is received. He said to say that we are giving back to the community; the taxpayers are not going to get the $300,000 a year back. We are going to spend it somewhere else
and eleven years from now weíll have no idea where we spent it. At least if something is done with the money, and we provide a state of the art firearms range, we are doing something with the money as opposed to wasting it on some other line items that we will never remember where the money went. Member Capello said he assumed if the police officers had their own range they would go there more than twice a month. Mayor Csordas agreed and Member Capello said they would utilize the range a lot more to their benefit. He said to say the benefit out of it is a couple thousand dollars a year is not fair. He agreed with Mayor Pro Tem Landry that the two police officers shouldnít be tied to the paying off of the bond. Member Capello said he wouldnít put two police officers on the road, but Lt. McNamara explained to him that he has two very well qualified officers and if he didnít get the money he would lose them. He said that is the only thing that would lend him to vote to put two officers on the road tonight. He said all
he is in favor of is the two officers and the $17,411 for the laptop edge conversion. He would not support the motion as it stands, but thatís not to say he wouldnít support something to that affect six to eight months from now.
Member Paul asked for clarification. She said Member Capello didnít include the 800 MHZ Radio conversion and her understanding was that had to be done. Member Capello said it is already done. Member Paul said we have $300,000 compared to $20,000. She said $300,000 a year is what is paid back on the debt. $20,000 a year is what is paid to rent a firearm range. She said we are going to take $20,000 and put it into ammunition, lighting, heating, cooling and the repair of the rubber medium in the back as it lasts approximately five years and cost between $5,000 and $10,000. So, we are going to put money back into the firing range. Member Paul said she is for the firing range if we can pay off the debt. She is in favor of the police officer promised and for another police on the road. The taxpayers see people on the road keeping them safe
but they are not going to see a lot of people in a firing range, although, their expertise will be improved and that is great.
Member Gatt asked what the requirement is for firearms. Acting Chief Molloy said they are required to qualify twice a year with the pistols. However, they encourage staff and have the range rented twice a month so if we have the personnel and staffing and the range officers on duty to run the range they will do it twice a month. He said if a range was available they would use it much more than twice a month.
Member Gatt has heard it said time and time again what a professional police department we have, and he couldnít agree more. However, to be the most professional police department they have to be trained and ready for the most dangerous and horrific situations; that is when they use their firearms. He said the training he received was not adequate, and departments with their own range can aid officers who have a problem shooting with practice and the help of a qualified instructor. He said $10,000 or $20,000 versus a couple million doesnít make sense until there is a shooting where and officer shoots and kills an innocent bystander. Then in a court of law it is determined that with better training that wouldnít have happened; that would save our taxpayers millions and millions of dollars. He commented he had wanted a police range since he became a Council Member, it is one of our top goals and it is something he thought they should move forward on.
Mayor Csordas said he would support everything and the three items that were recommended, less the fourth one. Mayor Csordas said he would never change his vote. He felt the debt bond should be paid down before anything else is done. He said he felt strongly about it, it is giving back to the City, and it is $3.3 million. He said Council had to look at the big picture. The fiscal responsibility is what they were all there for. So, he supported all of it in due time but he would never support anything until the bond is paid down.
Mr. Helwig said this is such a rare opportunity. He said he had watched this Council for almost two years do multiple year long range planning and thinking. He watched them work to "and" conclusions rather than "or" conclusions based on compromise, etc. He thought, tonight, they needed to move. We desperately need two officers. He suggested, to make sure this Council is solidly on record in support of the two major
items, is that tonight Council approve the items that have been suggested, Council has the payoff of the debt and they put half of the firearms range now in the motion. He said go with $1 million for the firearms range and $1.2 million for paying off the debt bond. Mr. Helwig said he senses some unnecessary jockeying based upon timing so that people arenít left without a priority that they feel strongly about. He said he heard people say they would put into the motion that the firearms range would be done with the next money, well what better way than to go tonight with some multiple year planning here and say to the administration "go forth and implement both". He said we escrow $1.2 million, which they have to because they canít call that debt until 2008 and authorize a Request for Proposals tonight and start spending money. He said they would try to get it back with an architectural firm before this Council is done the last meeting of October so everyone knows they are serious. They will get the facts to build a building and that takes time. He said they are all saying "letís do it all" so letís get started. He asked that they not put this on a new Council that is going to be feeling their
way on a number of things even though there is carry over. We are going to lose at least two of our Council members and who knows what going to happen in the election. This is so critical and such a rare opportunity.
Member Nagy made a friendly amendment to include two police officers, laptop edge conversion, $1.2 million in escrow for the firing range and $1.2 million to pay off the police department building debt bond. This is exactly what Mr. Helwig said and she thought it was a very rational, intelligent and fair compromise on all their parts.
Member Lorenzo agreed and would agree to a friendly amendment.
Mayor Csordas asked Mr. Helwig to clarify for him the escrow for those two items to guarantee that the money is set aside specifically for that and nothing else.
Mr. Helwig said to pay off the debt it has to be escrowed, and Ms. Smith-Roy would start that process so that the bond holders would know in 2008 we would be exercising a call, and that money is set aside. He said the other million dollars would be put in a specially designated trust fund accounted for in our government just like the Judgment Trust Fund that Council established. It would be a new fund, a new line item and a separate account with the full intention that each would double when the next $2.4 million comes in.
Mayor Csordas asked for the amended motion.
Ms. Cornelius said the amended motion is to include Item #5, the two officers, Item 8, the laptop edge conversion, $1.2 million in escrow for the firing range and $1.2 million in escrow to pay off the debt fund.
Mr. Helwig said the motion should be $1 million for the firearms range if they are going to do 50%.
Roll call vote on CM-05-09-300 Yeas: Lorenzo, Nagy, Paul, Csordas,
Nays: Capello, Gatt
Mayor Pro Tem Landry asked Mr. Helwig if he understood that they can not pay that debt until 2008. Mr. Helwig said the bonds canít be called before 2008. We can put the money in escrow and it will earn interest and thatís why itís not $2.5 million.
Member Capello asked if that would be considered spending the money within the two year period.
Mr. Helwig said Ms. Smith-Roy had already talked with the Federal officials and that is going to pass muster here. Member Capello said that would have changed his vote. Mr. Helwig said that was mentioned in Ms. Smith-Royís memo.
10. Discussion of "Fiscal Analysis: Fire Department Staffing Report".
Fire Chief Lenaghan said earlier this year at a Council meeting Member Lorenzo requested that they analyze the Fiscal Analysis Report done by Plante Moran for the Fire Department, which he said they did. He said it was divided into four major categories. He said they have a mostly volunteer Fire Department. They break it down into to four categories and by population.
He said when they looked at the Fiscal Analysis that was prepared it said a budget request model moving toward full time fire suppression.
Chief Lenaghan stated about one firefighter a year has been hired. So if we move toward this fulltime fire department we wouldnít reach the NFPA standard until 2050.
Chief Lenaghan said they utilize fulltime personnel, part time, paid on call and they have a sleep in program. They use 4 or 5 different systems to achieve 24 hour service. He said they fall into about four different categories with the system they use. In the report, they brought out a risk analysis to see what type of service will be provided at build out, and asked what the ultimate goal was for the Novi Fire Department regarding fire protection, medical services, hazardous material mitigation and home land security, etc. He said the risk analysis is a lot more than just a general overview, but to say this is a strategic plan for the Fire Department he thought was just an opportunity to open that door at this time. They have priorities, and currently have two stations that are paid on call. There are only 8 paid on call at one of the stations and 10 at the other. Theyíve had a problem keeping Station 2 open on the weekends. One priority is staffing these two stations with a program similar to the sleep in program on Saturdays and Sundays,
and that is the most immediate need.
Chief Lenaghan said theyíve changed their recruiting program. They work with Human Resources on this but also have a committee now of paid on call people. They have taken a different approach to this, and have had very good turn outs and good response from paid on call people who will assist the department in implementing a new program in an attempt to recruit more paid on call people. He said they currently operate with 50 to 54 paid on call people and there are four new people coming on. Chief Lenaghan said to keep this system going they need community participation with the paid on call system. We have to have the people to get the trucks on the road.
Chief Lenaghan said they have a regional agreement for Fire Protection and are currently in two mutual aid groups. He said the one they have with western Wayne County provides our Hazmat response and special rescue, although there is some special rescue they can do themselves. He said through western Oakland they have access to things like trench rescue. He said they provide confined space, ice rescue and water rescue with our own personnel. He said they also have a joint training agreement with the Farmington Hills Fire Department utilizing our facilities, their instructors, and they work with both departments in terms of training personnel. It seems to work out quite well but will work better once the training officer position is filled, and they are finishing up the interviews this week.
Chief Lenaghan said Plante Moran talked about Advanced Life Support and the program canít be done without 24 hour staff and is being provided by a private company now. If the City wanted to go to that level he wouldnít attempt it without 24 hour staffing. He
said the buildings would need to be modified because 3 out of 4 of our fire stations are not set up for 24 hour staffing. The only station that could handle this is Station 4.
He said these are a lot of the things to be considered and were all items in the fiscal analysis as this was the direction many Fire Departments were moving toward. Chief
Lenaghan said there are some areas that they would have to look at if Novi were to look at that but nothing has been done at the present time.
Chief Lengahan said the Farmington Hills Department is used as a model with one station being a 24 hour station and operates an Advanced Life Support program from that one station. Plante Moran said they are looking at strategy and possible planning and these are the first steps to make an analysis of the community.
Member Lorenzo said she had brought this to Councilís attention a few months ago because it was explored in the Fiscal Analysis. She was intrigued with the model being used for Farmington Hills because our base model budget said that at our millage of 10.54 we donít have the ability to add any new personnel. When Mr. Klaver retired the administration recommended the elimination of the COO position, which gave them about $150,000 in attrition money to use for additional personnel. Member Lorenzo said her hope was to enhance night and weekend service with the available limited funding that we do have. She said that is why she said it was important to have that additional $300,000 from paying down the debt. In additional to funding two police officers for long term it would also give us $120,000 - $120,000 to look at expanding the sleep over program to include two additional people to mimic Farmington Hills program. Member Lorenzo said Station 1, where our sleepover program is, cannot fit 2 additional people in there. She said brand new Station 4 could accommodate people. She thought the sleepover program should expand to have 2 sleepover at Station 4 in addition to the 2 people we have now at Station 1 to be able to respond on nights and weekends.
Member Lorenzo asked in terms of paid on call, how many additional personnel would be needed in the sleepover pool or program at Station 4. Chief Lenaghan said there are about 35 people participating in the sleepover program. He said the schedule would have to be looked at as it changes constantly but you would double up the shifts of some people willing to take more shifts.
Member Lorenzo said her question is if we instituted another sleepover program at Station 4, if we were to use paid on call personnel would we need anymore than are already in the program. Chief Lenaghan said it would be up to the personnel. We could ask all of them to do 4 shifts instead of 2. In terms of fulltime personnel, could new hires be assigned to a sleepover program. Chief Lengahan asked if she meant to put them on a 24 hour shift. Member Lorenzo said a new employee works a 12 hour shift and a 48 hour work week. Chief Lenaghan said she was correct. She asked if we could ask them to spend their 48 hours in sleepover. Chief Lenaghan responded that they could not do that because there is a union contract and it would have to be reopened. She said then youíd have to reopen the contract to change the shift hours. Chief Lenaghan said they work 12 hours and 24 hours are covered on Saturday and Sunday so there is two 12ís on Saturday and two 12ís on Sunday. Monday through Friday the 12 hour day shift is covered by our fire protection officers and the 12 on night shift are covered by the paid on call sleepover. She said the problem would come in with their only being able to
work 48 hours and it is a longer work week then. Chief Lenaghan said they currently work 48 because they work four 12 hour shifts a week. However, a 48 hour work week can be worked in 24 hour segments also. He said there was a problem on days and had no paid on call people on days so they had to take care of that situation and that is how the day staff was built. They felt comfortable knowing that after six oíclock there would
be adequate paid on call people at home to cover things until 6 AM the next morning. This is why they set up the 12 hour shifts and went to a 48 hour work week. They assigned 5 career people to one station and that meant four are on duty everyday and that covers the two trucks.
Member Lorenzo asked if the full time personnel could work more than 48 hours without opening the contract. Chief Lenaghan said that language is in the contract and they had to open the contract to make the change for the supervisors. He said it canít just arbitrarily change it. He said the paid on call people also have a union and they are in negotiations with them as well. Member Lorenzo said then in order to expand the 48 hour work week, they would have to reopen the contract. Chief Lenaghan said she was correct. Member Lorenzo said according to the memo Council received from Ms. Smith-Roy back in April if we were to hire two fulltime people it would cost $142,000 this year. She said each year, through contract, that number increases. She said the sleepover program with the paid on call costs us $190,000. He agreed. She said that is relatively stable unless something changes in a contract. Chief Lenaghan said it should change next year with a contract. Member Lorenzo said thatís why she thought in order to implement a second sleepover program, depending on the configuration, weíd need between $142,000 and $192,000 a year. She said we have part of Mr. Klaverís salary for one of those positions, we have $130,000 or $140,000 from the $300,000 that we will make from paying off the bonds for the additional money. She said she was asking conceptual support from the Council to ask the Administration and Chief Lenaghan to come back in 30 days and confirm that these funds are available and to offer a recommendation as to what configuration would work in terms of a sleepover. That would require asking whether there would be enough people willing to do that paid on call and in terms of fulltime whether it would be workable or would it mean opening up a contract. She said she wanted some direction from Administration on this. Chief Lenaghan said she wants an additional sleepover program in Station 4, but from an operational point what would they do. At Station 1 they have a special piece of apparatus that they operate and it is not a part of our standard response and only goes
into service when the pumper and rescue truck are there. He said Station 4 only has an engine and a rescue and supervisors. She said she would look to him for that direction. She said District 4 was a large district with only 10 paid on call people at this time and is below what the Chief would like to see. She thought these people could be the first response to something that is going on in the District and whether they would ever go into other districts that would be decided by the Chief. Chief Lengahan said priorities would be that Station 2 is a much bigger priority than Station 4. He said he had to get that Station covered on the weekends. He said they were not funded for it and it would be a $40,000 expenditure to keep it open. She asked if two people could physically be put at Station 2 overnight. He said they wouldnít be overnight. It would just be during the day because it seems they can cover it in the evening because people come back in the evening. During the day the Station has to be closed because no one is around. He said what this would be is that someone would come in at 8 AM and stay until 8 PM and go home. No one would sleep there. Member Lorenzo said her goal is to enhance night
and weekend level of service with the limited amount of funding available. She thought they were talking about two separate issues and she wasnít saying that what Chief Lenaghan was saying wasnít equally important and she didnít know how to address that. Her goal is to look at an expanded sleepover program. If it is at Station 4, you would
have two people at Station 4 to respond to incidents in District 4 and possibly in other Districts as well.
Member Lorenzo was looking for support of Council to ask the Administration to work together with Chief Lenaghan and bring Council information as to whether this could work or not, to confirm whether there would be enough money to do it and would it be paid on call or fulltime personnel.
CM-05-09-301 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Paul; CARRIED
UNANIMOUSLY: To direct administration and the Fire Chief
to bring information back to Council within 30 days on how to
enhance coverage at the Fire Stations, to confirm whether
there would be enough money, and what the configuration
would be in terms of paid on call or fulltime personnel for the
Mayor Pro Tem Landry thought what he was hearing was an attempt by Member Lorenzo to increase the efficiency of the fire department. It also sounded like Member Lorenzo perceives that the priority for increasing efficiency is to improve the night time program. He said he didnít know whether that was true or not, but what he is hearing in this discussion is that the Fire Department sees other priorities ahead of increasing the night time program. He said he was for gathering information but personally, he thought these kinds of decisions should be made at budget time, but he is not opposed to getting additional information. He said he could support a request of the administration to come back to Council with some recommendations on Member Lorenzoís suggestion about how to increase efficiency at night time. However, she would also like to know the Fire Departments priority and if that is a number one priority to them. Mayor Pro Tem Landry said Council has already received a fire department staffing recommendation and so he thought that could be done quickly.
Member Paul stated she also wanted to hear what the Chief Lenaghan was looking at as his priorities as well as Member Lorenzoís. She said she learned from a Fire Department tour that 90% of fires occur at night and if we donít have proper coverage for the residents of 52,000 people at night that petrifies her. She would welcome all information even if it is not at budget time because she wants enough coverage to make sure that everyoneís safe.
Roll call vote on CM-05-09-301 Yeas: Gatt, Lorenzo, Nagy, Paul, Csordas,
11. Discussion of the Engineering Field Services proposals for consultant
Mayor Pro Tem Landry explained that his concerns were answered, and personally he was impressed being on the Consultant Review Committee with Spalding Dedeckerís presentation and thought they would do a fine job.
CM-05-09-302 Moved by Landry, seconded by Csordas; MOTION CARRIED:
To approve the contract for engineering field services to Spalding DeDecker
Member Nagy stated that she cannot support the motion as it should be postponed until the new Council members come on board. Member Gatt concurred with Member Nagy.
Roll call vote on CM-05-09-302 Yeas: Lorenzo, Csordas, Landry, Capello
Nays: Nagy, Paul, Gatt
12. Consideration of revised agreement for Special Assessment District 170 (Maybury/Tuscany/Singh Sanitary Sewer) to address proposed revisions to
the service district.
This item was removed from the agenda.
13. Approval to award the Street Sweeper bid to W.F. Miller in the amount of $119,064.
CM-05-09-303 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Nagy; CARRIED
UNANIMOUSLY: To approve award of Street Sweeper bid to
W.F. Miller in the amount of $119,064.
Roll call vote on CM-05-09-303 Yeas: Nagy, Paul, Csordas, Landry, Capello, Gatt, Lorenzo
14. Approval to award the Patchmobile bid to Jack Doheny Supplies, Inc. in the amount of $47,800.
CM-05-09-304 Moved by Nagy, seconded by Gatt; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve award of Patchmobile bid to Jack Doheny Supplies,
Inc. in the amount of $47,800.
Roll call vote on CM-05-09-304 Yeas: Paul, Csordas, Landry, Capello, Gatt,
15. Approval to award the Meadowbrook Townhomes, Phase I landscaping and street
tree bid to Marine City Nursery, the low bidder, in the amount of $20,024 and also
to award any additional plantings as required per the approved site plan in the
unit prices as quoted in bid alternate #3. (Source of Funds: Developerís Financial
CM-05-09-305 Moved by Nagy, seconded by Paul; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve award of the Meadowbrook Townhomes, Phase I
landscaping and street tree bid to Marine City Nursery, the low
bidder, in the amount of $20,024 and also to award any additional
plantings as required per the approved site plan in the unit prices as
quoted in bid alternate #3. (Source of Funds: Developerís Financial
Roll call vote on CM-05-09-305 Yeas: Csordas, Landry, Capello, Gatt, Lorenzo,
CONSENT AGENDA REMOVALS FOR COUNCIL ACTION
K. Approval of Traffic Control Orders 05-01 (Reindeer Trail) and 05-02 (Antler Drive)
within the Deerbrook Subdivision Ė Mayor Pro Tem Landry
Mayor Pro Tem Landry said this was a request by members of Deerbrook Subdivision for stop signs. He removed this because he thought the procedure Council passed several years ago was that the subdivision would request the stop signs, Council would send the request to the Traffic Consultants and as long as they didnít say it would be detrimental Council would defer to the subdivision. He said they requested stop signs, the traffic control people came back saying Yield signs, because they are going to say stop signs donít slow traffic down, etc. Mayor Pro Tem Landry said in keeping with Council policy, he would move to give them their stop signs.
CM-05-09-306 Moved by Landry, seconded by Capello; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve Traffic Control Orders 05-01 (Reindeer Trail) and 05-02
(Antler Drive) within the Deerbrook Subdivision.
Motion passed by voice vote
L. Approval of Final Pay Estimate No. 8 and Final Change Order No. 3 in the amount of
$35,635.65 to John Carlo, Inc. for the concrete portion of the 2004 Neighborhood
Roadway Rehabilitation Program Contract Ė Member Capello
Member Capello said there was correspondence in the file regarding the quality of the pavement put down by John Carlo. He said he had looked at the photographs but couldnít tell if there was any scaling. The documentation in Council packets indicate that there was scaling and they were going to try to correct the problem by spraying a seal coat over it. Member Capello commented he wasnít sure that was the proper fix, especially with just a one year maintenance bond. He asked if there was anything Council could do to go out there and inspect it and get a little more information before making this payment to John Carlo.
Mr. Helwig said Mr. Hayes and Mr. McCusker were out there again today and provided Council with a memo, at their Council table, tonight. He asked Mr. Hayes and Mr. McCusker to comment on the structure and how this happened in terms of salting of driveways in the winter, whatís been done and where to go from here.
Mr. Hayes said they observed pitting and spauling of the concrete pavement right at the surface. On the tail end of the Court on Arcadia Drive was the pitting problem. He said that is pretty much an aesthetic problem and it has not affected the structural integrity of the roadway whatsoever. He said their solution to that was to apply a curing compound
with a sealing component to it to seal that surface. He said they plan to observe it from now on to see if any further deterioration occurs. He said he didnít expect and deterioration because it is just a surface problem. Mr. Hayes said a couple residents brought to their attention areas where there is spauling or actual pops of the concrete surface, a two inch diameter, and those are to be repaired by the contractor before final payment is released.
Mr. McCusker said he and Mr. Hayes walked the Court today and Arcadia Drive to look for any imperfections with a couple of residents and Mr. Pearson. He said they came up with a fix on anything they thought was going to be a problem or possibly could be a problem. He said most of it is aesthetics and there is nothing structural there. Mr. McCusker said the real money is not the final payment, it is the maintenance bond and that is why we like to get to that point. He said they talked with Mr. Cardilla of John Carlo, Inc., about a week ago and they stand behind their maintenance bond also. He said if anything materializes he thought the City was free to pull the bond. Mr. McCusker said he didnít believe that would be necessary. It is more of a sand finish on it and most of the areas observed with imperfections were because it was hand work and not done by the machine. When hand work is done it is a little wetter when they are putting it in because they have to work it by hand in the back of the cul-de-sacs and on the curb. Mr. McCusker said it doesnít look like it is going to materialize and do anything more than it is right now. He said they would really know after another plowing in the winter with the blades and the heavy trucks and they would have a good look at it in the spring. He said in their opinion it would not get worse and said the concrete association was also out there and looked at it.
Member Capello said his concern was the scaling and spauling, and if it wasnít salt he had assumed it was a workmanship issue in regard to finishing the concrete. He said his concern was that if they were just going to put a seal coat on it it might last just long enough for their warranty to end, and then we would be stuck with the premature wearing of the remaining surface. He said it was not something the City could fix with the asphalt machine the City bought.
Mr. McCusker said it was not a true spauling. He said they found pits in areas, and he believes that some of it was because the residents had private contractors salting their driveways. He said the City didnít salt that area last year, they used sand. Mr. McCusker said it was a hard winter last year and a lot of salt got tracked in or pushed in from driveways and might have caused the pitting on the new concrete.
Mr. Hayes said the spauling, observed today, was further north on Arcadia, and it was an isolated area and consisted of two inch holes in the surface that needed to be patched.
Member Capello asked if Mr. Hayes and Mr. McCusker were confident it was not a structural problem and they said they were.
Member Paul said she had gone out to see this. She said there is a very large Court and the street is three sections of concrete wide with an island in the middle. So, there is a lot of concrete. She said there is a wetland and there is a circle to the very southern portion of Arcadia and only two residents on the cul-de-sac. She said she
respected the information given but she couldnít see how the entire cul-de-sac could be affected with salt when only two driveways are on the south side of Arcadia Court. This wetland is behind the houses on the southern portion of Arcadia and also on the northern portion, and that is why there are no homes on there. Her thought was that this was supposed to be a private, single dwelling condominium site long ago. She said private roads were supposed to be there. When the wetland was filled to put in the cul-de-sac and some of the homes she didnít think the soil was so great. She said this wasnít on the site plan review because it was 12 or 14 years ago when this all went down. She said they werenít here when the roads were made public instead of private. She said this is a lot of information that she wasnít 100% sure on. One can just see the wetlands on both sides of the road and know that there are no houses on one side and there are some on the other. Member Paul said the entire street is pitted with Ĺ inch to an inch little potholes all over the street. This is one year old. This started in February and she was not sure that it didnít occur with just freezing and thawing, in her assumption. Also, as you go down Arcadia where it was actually poured by the machine, there are several 8 to 10 inch areas that are completely cracked all the way around. In this area there are also different colored gray areas that look just like this, and they are starting to crack but donít have the full crack around it yet. She thought there would be more problems on this road and salt wasnít all the way up and down here, because they were very good about putting sand down. There was a very large argument between the contractors and residents on Arcadia at the Court. She said when she looked at the roads there was some epoxy they had put in the area. In front of one residentís house where there is epoxy put in, they said when they did the concrete removal and put in the base they had to go lower in the base because there wasnít an adequate base put in originally, and there was standing water. She was not sure this is going to be a good fix long term. She would not support the approval of this $35,000 and she felt that the bond was only for one year and we are already at one year. She asked how much longer does the City have on this bond of $1 million plus and how much money do we have.
Mr. Hayes said the bond wonít take effect until the final payment is made. Member Paul said we have one year from final payment and the payment is $35,000 plus change and it is $1,249,043.00 on the bond. Mr. Hayes agreed. She asked if this was paid today then we have until September of next year and one more winter. Mr. Hayes agreed. She asked what would happen if the different colored gray spots at are all along Arcadia in the section that has been done and more problems occur in that cul-de-sac.
Mr. Hayes said it would be the responsibility of the Public Works Department to make those repairs. He said they didnít anticipate future problems by what they had seen so far. Member Paul said that some of the subdivision on the next street over, Joslyn, Addington and others have had cul-de-sacís done and had the streets done with concrete poured by the machine, and this didnít happen in those areas. She said she was very concerned, and felt it was a bigger issue than whatís being shared. She didnít want to have the DPW repair that section of road, the concrete is huge.
Mr. McCusker said they would watch it through the winter, and at that point call the attorneyís office and tell him there are problems, and have him secure the bond and then go back with the bond money and repair anything that needs repair.
Member Paul asked how long the seal would stay on. Mr. McCusker said the sealer would stay in place for at least a year. The surface area will get polished anyway by the steel blades on the dump trucks and it polishes the surface of most concrete areas. He said they wanted to be sure there were no structural pops down below where large sections of concrete come out. He said that can usually be seen in a year or two if just below the surface of the area. A lot of the spider cracking is just the sand that comes up in a wet mix to the top of the surface and usually washes or gets plowed away. He said they saw nothing deeper than a Ĺ inch deep other than a couple rock pops here and there. He said as part of this deal and we get the check they would have JCK hold on to the check until these minor things are taken care of. He said our real security is the maintenance bond. The $35,000 wouldnít do that cul-de-sac but the $1.2 million will take care of any of our real needs.
Member Paul said then you are requesting Council to pay the $35,000 so that the bond can be secured for one year. They responded yes. She said before JCK would release this, they would do all of these repairs of the spauling with the epoxy, they would fix Sue Coates driveway, which has been cracked in the approach, and there are several other lips of concrete that have four inch gaps out of the curb.
Mr. McCusker said they would block the street and physically mark those, and go back with a contractor. He said they were going to get with the residents who are present today, and have them go out and make sure they donít know of anything else he didnít see.
Member Paul said this was on the agenda three weeks ago for us to approve and if this resident hadnít seen her at a football game and bring it up Council wouldnít have known. She asked why would that come before us and not be checked before. She said when the Consent Agenda is voted on she assumes that everyoneís checked these items off and she is comfortable with it. But then when you actually go back when someone raises a point, there was some problems with the integrity of this.
Mr. Hayes said when the concern was raised regarding the Court they inspected the Court. Some of the smaller pops or spauling brought to our attention today werenít evident to them because they werenít out walking the street to see those small problems that existed. Ms. Paul said before this gets on the payment sheet, she felt they should already have done that. She was looking for clarification for the future of the Engineering Department accepting that and saying it was OK. Otherwise, Council would have had less money in the bond and they would have had to take some of the bond money and done the sealant ourselves or some of the repairs would have to be done by DPW.
Mr. Helwig said the City contracts for construction inspection engineering. We do not do that. He said we rely on the letters from the consultant engineer that has been hired to do that for us, and they certify that all work has been completed. Thankfully, in this incident, we have residents and Council members who are extra eyes and ears and brought this matter to the surface.
Member Paul said she now understands why this should be paid and the only reason she would change her mind is so that the bond can be secured. She said before the
bond is expired she wanted to hear from Mr. Hayes and Mr. McCusker saying that this is OK. Member Paul said she didnít want to eat $1 million worth of road repair when there are so many other areas on the list.
Mr. Hayes said before the bond expires, a year from now, we will make sure that there are no deficiencies. As long as we have them noted and bring it to the firm Surety, then the bond can still be used.
CM-05-09-307 Moved by Paul, seconded by Capello; CARRIED
UNANIMOUSLY: To approve Final Pay Estimate No. 8 and
Final Change Order No. 3 in the amount of $35,635.65 to
John Carlo, Inc. for the concrete portion of the 2004
Neighborhood Roadway Rehabilitation Program contract.
Motion passed by voice vote
MAYOR AND COUNCIL ISSUES
1. Retiree Health Benefit Policy change Ė Mayor Csordas
Mayor Csordas said he was looking at Ms. Gronlund-Foxís September 7, 2005 memo regarding health care update. He said there is a retired employee who has been retired from the City for 12 years and they want to add a spouse to the health insurance that is provided through the City. He said it was an interesting situation. Mayor Csordas said he was assuming they were paying 20% of the $583.55 for the premium.
Ms. Gronlund-Fox said Mayor Csordas was correct. Mayor Csordas said to add a spouse it would take their monthly premium from $583.55 to $1,286.26. Ms. Gronlund-Fox said he was correct. Mayor Csordas said he didnít know who the person was but assuming they have a life expectancy of another 10 years that would be an $84,000 decision to the taxpayers for a policy that he questioned. He said evidently it is not part of policy but has been a part of practice.
Mayor Csordas read from the document, provided by Ms. Gronlund-Fox in affect at the time of this personís retirement. "First of all upon retirement or disability retirement the City shall provide Blue Cross/Blue Shield". Mayor Csordas said that is inappropriate and has to be changed. It is not the carrier, it is the benefit. As long as the benefit stays the same for the employee, that is fine, but to give a sweet deal to Blue Cross/Blue Shield, the highest cost provider on the market. He understood this was put together many years ago and they didnít have a full grasp of that. He asked for support of Council to change that. It is the benefit and if you get X number from this carrier and X number of this from that carrier that is the way it should be. We should not be locked into Blue Cross/Blue Shield, the highest cost provider in the market, and then a retired employee wants to add someone costing us $84,000 on decisions made in the past. The actuarial study needs to be done and this is just a part of the bigger problem that he sees and the bigger train wreck that is coming down the road. He asked Ms. Gronlund-Fox to hold off on her decision on that and said he knew there was an attorneyís opinion on that. He said there is no litigation involved but wondered if it would be
appropriate to have the attorney address this at a future Council meeting. He wants Council to get a full explanation of this and the thought process behind that recommendation.
Mr. Helwig said Ms. Grunlund-Fox has initiated a Request for Change in language in the policy, which they wanted to bring forward on the next agenda. Mr. Helwig said at a minimum he would ask that the policy be changed for future retirees and however it would be appropriate to discuss this they would be happy to do that the same evening.
Mayor Csordas said he just questioned the logic of being retired for 12 years and coming back and popping an $84,000 bill on this City.
Member Gatt asked if they were talking about the administrative employees when talking about initiating the change immediately. Mr. Helwig said for administrative and anyone it can be applied to in terms of retirees. Also on that agenda, will be the broader discussion regarding other changes for new hires, administrative and current administrative personnel.
Member Capello asked to have a comparison with what the union contracts provided during that same period of time. He thought the intent back then was that whatever the unionís got, the administration has.
Mayor Csordas said they want to be fair, but they also want to be aware of the changing marketplace regarding retirement benefits and health care. At that time, he would ask for a committee to be put together and asked Administration to make a recommendation on who should be on that committee. It is a long term committee and there would have to be a consultant involved there, and he thought it would be inappropriate to stick our agent in the middle of that because it would be a conflict of interest.
Member Paul stated she wanted to put one more motion on the table regarding Item #9, for the forfeiture funds. One thing she asked and failed to move forward on was to approve the building improvements for the maintenance of the window repair and their replacements including the asbestos removal. She didnít want any person to be under the asbestos and poor window conditions. She asked that the $50,000 be approved tonight.
CM-05-09- Moved by Paul, seconded by Nagy; MOTION WITHDRAWN:
To approve the building improvements for the maintenance of the
window repair and their replacements including the asbestos
removal for $50,000.
Mayor Csordas asked Mr. Schultz if this could be done. Mr. Schultz said motions are not typically made under Mayor and Council Issues unless they are placed on the agenda at the time the agendaís approved. He thought the formal way to do it, as Council is still in open session, would be for the Mayor, as Chair, could recognize somebody who voted in favor on a reconsideration, but that opens the whole thing back up.
Mr. Helwig said on the September 26th agenda they would have the budget amendment to implement Councilís decision tonight and that would be an appropriate time if Council wished to add something else.
Mr. Schultz said at that point it would be a new item and not a reconsideration of whatís been done tonight.
Member Paul agreed and withdrew her motion.
AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION Ė None
There being no further business to come before Council, Council adjourned to Executive Session at 11:20 P.M.
Lou Csordas, Mayor Maryanne Cornelius, City Clerk
Transcribed by: Charlene Mc Lean Date approved: September 26, 2005