President of Council Kathy McNear called Council to order on March
21, 2007, at 7:00 p.m.
The governmental body and those in attendance recited the pledge of allegiance. Mr. Knox gave the invocation.
Mr. Knox took roll call. Present were Council members Danbury, Galster, Harlow, Squires, Vanover, Wilson and McNear.
The minutes of March 7, 2007 were approved with seven affirmative votes.
COMMITTEE AND OFFICIAL REPORTS
Civil Service Commission - no report
Rules and Laws - no report
Public Relations Mr. Danbury the Springdale newsletter should be arriving at peoples homes shortly.
Public Health, Safety & Welfare - no report
Public Works - no report
Public Utilities - no report
Capital Improvements Mr. Danbury reported on the grade separation project, the contractor is working on completing the signal ramps at Ramp D and Progress Place and Duke will be starting the roadway lighting in April. Final asphalt should be done in mid May. The Kemper Road Phase III construction is expected to begin in early April. The bridge widening should begin in early April and be completed in September of this year. The construction on SR 4 north of Glensprings to south of Crescentville Road will begin in late April and should be completed by July. Trend Construction was the low bidder for the East Kemper Road improvement at Tri-County Mall. Construction will be late April through July. There should be a rough site grading plan for the Veterans Memorial completed by the end of April.
Finance Committee - no report
Planning Commission Mr. Galster said at the February 22nd meeting Springdale Town Center was granted approval of a ground sign set back at the southwest corner. Angelic Whisperers, 11465 Springfield Pike, asked for an exterior fašade change. That was approved 7-0. The parking was tabled until Marchs meeting. The final item was development plan approval for the Lakeview project at Maple Knoll Village redevelopment of the existing cottages at the main entrance. That was approved 7-0.
Mr. Galster stated at the March 13 meeting Angelic Whisperers was back on the parking issue. There are six or seven parking spaces that back out onto SR 4. We were able to put in a quarter moon driveway so they can use that for handicap use. They need to add light for the back parking lot but that was approved 7-0. A development plan for the Vineyard Church building purchased adjacent to their site was approved with seven affirmative votes.
Board of Zoning Appeals - no report
Board of Health Mrs. Harlow reported that they had a second reading of Regulation R1-207 regarding pool fees and a discussion of a service agreement with Critt R Catch R. The Board of Health will be offering cholesterol checks on the third Thursday of each month.
Veterans Memorial Committee - no report
O-K-I Mr. Knox said the one item of interest to the residents of Springdale is that SORTA has gotten increased funding for a fare box project, where you use an electronic card to pay which will be faster for the patrons and also for traffic.
Mayors Report Mayor Webster said Mr. Osborn, and Mr. Williams and I met with Representative Raussen to discuss House Bills 3 and 4 that could have an effect on the amount of estate tax that the City receives. We knew it was a good source of revenue for us. Over the last ten years weve averaged about $880,000 in estate tax. Its not all windfall as we do have to provide services for the seniors. Thats why I was not concerned about taking on the programming for the seniors. It looks like its the second or third highest revenue in the City each year. We wanted to express our concern to Mr. Raussen that if they tinker with this that we come out whole on this.
Mr. Knox said HB 3 sets a state minimum for estate taxes at $500,000. Anybodys estate up to that will pay no tax. In the past the State has gotten twenty percent of the proceeds from estate taxes. Under HBs 3 and 4, the State would get no money. They would receive it and pass it directly on to the municipalities. HB 4 starts at $366,675 and says that the first $15,575 of tax is credit given to the heirs, which drives this up quite a bit over $500,000. In both bills there are provisions for residents to ask that other formulas be used. We did fairly well with HB 3. HB 4 as it was used last year would have cost us $83,000. HB 4 has an escalator on it using the CPI from September. In December the State Auditor figures out what the new base is. If they are going to pass one I prefer HB 3.
Clerk of Council/Finance Director Mr. Knox recommended Ordinance 22-2007 for passage.
Administrators Report Mr. Osborn said we recently concluded the purchase of a case wheel loader. At the time we had a 1981 Ford 340 tractor loader to trade in. Our best offer on the trade-in was $3,500. The Public Works Department believes that they can get more money than that by selling it on e-bay. Wed like to bring in an ordinance at the next meeting authorizing the sale of that vehicle.
Mr. Osborn stated we have been approached by Lifesphere regarding some financing they are going to be doing in support of the sixty-one independent living units they are building in Springdale and the thirty units they are building in Oxford. The proposal is that Butler County issue $40 million in health care facility bonds, and we would enter into a public hospitals agency agreement with Butler County so that the money that is raised through their bonds can be spent in another jurisdiction, specifically Springdale. Id like to invite representatives from Lifesphere to answer any questions you might have, and have the ordinance before you at the next meeting. Bond Counsel on this is Mr. Abbot Thayer with Peck, Shaffer, Williams.
Law Directors Report
Mr. Knox read a letter from Mr. Schneider that said, In deep appreciation to the Springdale City Council and officials, thank you for your thoughtfulness by making a contribution in my mothers name to the Roger Bacon Scholarship Fund. This will help pay tuition for students who need assistance. Ken and the Schneider family
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONS
ORDINANCE NO. 17-2007 AMENDING THE CODIFIED ORDINANCES OF THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE, OHIO, TO AMEND SECTION 35.01(B) OF CHAPTER 35: POLICE DEPARTMENT AND PERTAINING TO THE POLICE DEPARTMENTS COMPLEMENT, AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY
Mr. Vanover made a motion to adopt and Mr. Galster seconded.
Ordinance 17-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 18-2007 AMENDING ORDINANCE 9-2007 AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY
Mr. Galster made a motion to adopt and Mr. Vanover seconded.
Ordinance 18-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 19-2007 AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH TREND CONSTRUCTION ON KEMPER ROAD IMPROVEMENTS AT TRI-COUNTY MALL AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY
Mr. Vanover made a motion to adopt and Mrs. Harlow seconded.
Ordinance 19-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.
Mayor Webster said on Ordinance 17-2007, I think its important for the public to know that Ordinance 17-2007 increased our complement in our Police Department from 38 officers to 40. This will put one additional police officer on the street and greatly enhance our administrative capabilities within the Police Department. Id like to thank Council for support in our restructure of the way we administer things in our Police Department.
ORDINANCE NO. 20-2007 AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH KINZELMAN, KLINE, GOSSMAN (KKG) FOR SERVICES INVOLVED IN CONDUCTING THE SPRINGDALE RETAIL DISTRICT STUDY AND RECOMMENDATIONS FOR AN ACTION PLAN AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY
Jeff Tulloch, Economic Development Director, stated the retail district in Springdale covers about 500 acres or 15 percent of the City. There are about 4.5 million square feet of retail space. The retail sales are close to $1 billion with returns to the State and Hamilton County of well over $50 million annually in sales tax. The retail component represents nineteen percent of the economy of Springdale. The retail district is strong and vital but it needs some enhancement and redevelopment. KKG, in conjunction with Urban Marketing Collaborative (UMC), has been chosen to help us with this need. Aaron Whitaker of KKG has a presentation for you.
Mr. Whitaker gave a presentation to Council. Mr. Whitaker said you can create, in essence, beachfront property in urban environments by leveraging green space. Some of the most notable, livable communities in our nation have effectively knitted together commercial, residential, office, park and path space to define themselves. The economic contributions, both in the present and in the future, to the public economy are critical to our analysis. There is a somewhat homogenous sense of suburban strip mall auto centric model. It doesnt seem to sense a pedestrian feel. It doesnt appear to have a great depth of mix of uses. Our situation in, summary, is shifting of conditions. We have some turnover, some vacancy, a potential reputation issue, particularly in the retail tenant recruitment area. We have perhaps a lack of identity and place here. Its time to retool, to maintain and expand our market position and move the district forward. Our approach is a multi-disciplinary approach. Well take careful audit of the physical and retail environment. We craft our research methodology to answer specific questions. Were about making change, about providing for catalytic opportunities, and we will be looking for specific opportunities to engage the public.
Mr. Osborn said this is a forward looking plan. We are still a successful business district but we have to recognize that there is more competition today in the retail industry than any time in the past. In order for our retail district to remain competitive we believe it has to plan to advance to that next level of development that we are seeing in various areas around the Cincinnati region. This firm is an excellent firm. I have gotten glowing reports about this firm from Colerain Township and Montgomery. The study will take about nine months but the implementation will take years. It will be driven to a great degree by early successes and attracting the attention of people who have the money to reinvest in property, convincing those existing owners that it is time to reinvest. Were trying to take it to the next level.
Mr. Danbury asked do communities usually use tax abatements, TIFs, or use private funds to finance something like this?
Mr. Whitaker replied its usually a combination of things.
Ordinance 20-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 21-2007 AUTHORIZING AN AMENDMENT TO THE CODIFIED ORDINANCES OF THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE TO PROVIDE FOR A NEW SECTION 153.534 ELECTRONIC HIGHWAY SIGNS IN PLANNED UNIT DEVELOPMENT ZONING DISTRICTS
Mr. Danbury asked did this come from a recommendation from Planning Commission? Mr. Galster replied yes and Planning Commission forwarded it to Council.
Mr. Danbury asked shouldnt there be a section that says Planning Commission passed this with their vote count. If it comes with a 4-3 vote, then Council has to have at least five votes. Mr. Schneider stated that should probably be in there.
Mr. Danbury made a motion to add a section stating that Planning Commission passed the recommendation with six affirmative votes. Mr. Vanover seconded. The motion passed with seven affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 22-2007 AN ORDINANCE AUTHORIZING THE ISSUANCE OF NOT TO EXCEED $525,000 TAX INCREMENT REVENUE NOTES OF THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE; PROVIDING FOR THE PLEDGE OF REVENUES FOR THE PAYMENT OF SUCH NOTES; AUTHORIZING NECESSARY AND APPROPRIATE DOCUMENTS; AND AUTHORIZING OTHER ACTIONS IN CONNECTION WITH THE ISSUANCE OF SUCH NOTES AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY
Mrs. Harlow made a motion to ready by title only and Mr. Danbury seconded. The motion passed with seven affirmative votes.
Mr. Osborn stated in February 2005 we created a TIF district at Tri-County Mall encompassing just those areas that are undergoing improvement. That TIF district has been dormant to this point and now we are starting to see development. As part of that development Tri-County would like to reconfigure their southern parking facility and the access into that facility. A critical part of that is a new signalized intersection directly across from the entrance into Cassinelli Square. When it is completed it will be a full intersection with the south side serving Cassinelli Square and the north side serving Tri-County Mall. The cost of this improvement is $523,000. We are not prepared to issue long-term debt because there is no money there at this time. We will probably see some revenues in 2009. In the interim, wed like to issue a note for $523,092 that will be used to build the intersection. We have negotiated with Thor UDR, the owners of the mall that they will take direct placement of the note. They are the ones at risk. This is a TIF note and is not secured by the good faith of credit of the City of Springdale. The ordinance says that in several places. The City is fairly well protected for the debt ever coming back on us. This will expedite the construction of that intersection and keep the Tri-County Mall redevelopment on pace. We ask Councils consent to this legislation.
Mr. Vanover made a motion to adopt and Mr. Squires seconded.
Ordinance 22-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.
RESOLUTION R7-2007 APPROVING THE PAYMENT OF $10,000.00 TO THE CINCINNATI USA PARTNERSHIP FOR THE YEAR 2007
Mr. Danbury made a motion to adopt and Mr. Vanover seconded.
Mr. Osborn said this is not a new program. The purpose is to provide Cincinnati USA with resources to promote this region nationally and internationally. Site Selection Magazine has picked the Cincinnati area as one of the top ten metro areas for economic development. This is based on criteria that measures investments of more than $1 million in private capital, fifty or more new jobs created with a single deal or 20,000 square feet of space built in a single deal. We have consistently been in that top ten. Last year Greater Cincinnati had ninety-three projects that qualified under this program. This is the fifth year this area has been part of the top ten list. We are part of that regional economy. If were not part of it, we can work as hard as want to and not see any improvements in our economics here in the City. This contribution gives us a seat at the table when it comes to talking to the Chamber about our needs and our interests and eliciting support on things that might be required. This is the fourth year of a five-year commitment.
Resolution R7-2007 passed with seven affirmative votes.
Mr. Wilson said I want to commend the Springdale Employees Committee who put on our employee celebration Saturday. It was phenomenal. It was different. No one fell asleep. People stayed well beyond 10:00 p.m. We need to keep on pressing.
Mr. Knox stated they are working on the Kenn Road bridge so it is one-way traffic during the work day.
Mr. Knox said we received our annual letter from the Ohio Department of Commerce Division of Liquor Control in regard to permit renewal objections. Chief Laage told me there are no establishments in the City that are continually being a problem. He would advise us not to object to any of the licenses at this time.
Council had no objections.
MEETINGS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
Opening Day - April 28
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
UPDATE ON LEGISLATION STILL IN DEVELOPMENT
Ordinance 21-2007 - April 18
RECAP OF LEGISLATIVE ITEMS REQUESTED
Sale of tractor - April 4
LifeSphere agreement - April 4
Council adjourned at 8:18 p.m.
Edward F. Knox
Clerk of Council/Finance Director
Kathy McNear, President of Council
City of Springdale Council
March 21 2007