Acting President of Council Tom Vanover called Council to order on
April 18, 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, and Wilson. Mrs. McNear was absent.
The minutes of April 4 were approved with six affirmative votes. Mr. Squires the word attached should be changed to attacked twice on the first page.
PROCLAMATION FOR RICHARD IAN COTTERILL, EAGLE SCOUT
Mayor Webster read a proclamation proclaiming April 22, 2007 as Richard Ian Cotterill day in Springdale.
Mark Kluesmeier, Scoutmaster of Troop 912, said this is our third Eagle Scout. He is an asset to the community and to the troop. Boy Scouts is about building good citizens and mature young men who set a great example for those who follow. Thank you for honoring him.
Mr. Danbury, Mrs. Harlow, Mr. Squires and Mr. Vanover offered their congratulations. Mr. Danbury said this will put you five steps ahead in applying to colleges or for jobs. I commend the scout leader as well. Mrs. Harlow said it takes a family to grow an Eagle Scout.
COMMITTEE AND OFFICIAL REPORTS
Civil Service Commission Tony Potts said we tested for four positions. We had 199 applications for the violations bureau clerk and 92 took the test. We interviewed twenty-three candidates and certified the names of the top ten to City Administration. There were 235 applicants for the administrative secretary position in the Police Department and 153 took the test. We certified the top ten candidates to Administration. Twelve signed up to take the test for Assistant Fire Chief and nine took the test. Results went out last week and we are in the ten day wait period to see if there are any challenges. The top three names will be certified next week. Four hundred ten people applied for the administrative assistant position in the Building Department and 239 took the test. We will interview the top twenty or so the week of May 6.
Rules and Laws - no report
Public Relations - no report
Public Health, Safety & Welfare - no report
Public Works - no report
Public Utilities - no report
Capital Improvements Mr. Danbury said the signal work at Progress Place is substantially complete. Sidewalk construction is substantially complete. They will be sealing and painting the bridge walls later this month. Construction on the roadway lighting will begin in late April. Final asphalt will be put in place in late April with completion in mid May. The construction of the bridge for Kemper Road Phase 3 is anticipated to start next Monday. The widening is supposed to start in early May and should be completed in September 2007. The stage 3 design of the SR 4 continuous northbound lane at Glensprings should be submitted in mid May. Construction should begin in 2009. The SR 4 ODOT urban paving from Glensprings to 800 feet south of Crescentville should be starting in May and completed mid July. We should be starting the construction for Kemper Road improvements at Tri-County Mall in early May with completion in July. The preliminary grading plan is complete for the Veterans Memorial. We are completing the landscaping options and working with suppliers on statue options and marker stones. Construction should start in August 2007.
Finance Committee - no report
Planning Commission Mr. Galster said there was no meeting but I want to say there was a minor change to Ordinance 21. Paragraph g was added in reference to maintenance of those electronic signs.
Board of Zoning Appeals - no report
Board of Health - Mayor Webster reported the regulation for pool fees was passed. The fees had not been increased in several years but they are still in line with what everyone else is charging.
Veterans Memorial Committee Mr. Wilson stated the committee is working on a golf outing for the month of September.
O-K-I Mr. Knox said there was an address at the meeting by Mr. Christopher BortzBorst, Cincinnati Council member. He said Cincinnati is looking to establish a trolley car line in downtown Cincinnati so people can park their cars and move around more easily since there will be fewer cars on the road. This is in the very rudimentary stages and they are trying to find a way to run them into Kentucky. They are going do it with a tax increment financing plan which will be charging the businesses along the route, yet they are going to insure that the Cincinnati public schools dont lose any money. I would like to see them take a hard look at this.
Mayors Report Mayor Webster stated we had our third annual State of the City address sponsored by the Springdale Chamber of Commerce. Three years ago when we started this event Jeff and I participated. There were eighteen people in attendance. Last year there were twenty-seven and this year we had fifty people attend. All of our major retail establishments were there. There were twenty-five to thirty Chamber members. Mr. Tulloch did a marvelous job submitting some of the plans we had.
Mayor Webster read a proclamation for Arbor Day. Mayor Webster said I would like to invite everyone to participate in our Arbor Day celebration April 27.
Clerk of Council/Finance Director - Mr. Knox recommended Resolution 8-2007.
Administrators Report Mr. Parham reported on April 13 we received bids for the fiber optic cable installation for our camera system. We received a $50,000 grant from the Department of Homeland Security for the Installation of cameras in the Tri-County Mall area. Another $100,000 was budgeted from the City for this project. The low bidder for the project was Bansal Construction Company with a bid of $41,289. The engineers estimate was $70,000. Because the low bid was so much lower than the engineers estimate, it may allow us to install a few more cameras quicker than we had planned. We would like to request legislation at the next meeting.
Mayor Webster said this system will not be used to issue citations for someone running a red light. The surveillance is in case there is an incident at the mall.
Mr. Wilson stated there is a big difference in price. Are we looking at the same caliber of equipment.?
Mr. Parham replied the bids were all over the board ranging from $41,000 to $96,000. TEC Engineering has been spearheading this project along with Captain Hafer of the Police Department. They feel confident that we will get the necessary quality of cable and that it will meet our needs and requirements for this particular project. There are two tests that have to be run on the cable after it arrives. The first test is to determine that the cable received is in good working condition. The second test will be taken after the actual installation to make sure the cable has not been damaged during the installation.
Mr. Wilson said I was just curious as to why the lowest bid was less than half of the highest. Usually when you see a spread like this somebody is missing something.
Mr. Parham said we did have some concerns with the low bidder. We have not personally engaged in any work with them. They were a part of the Phase II streetscape project. There were a few challenges but that was also a project administered by the State. TEC feels confident that the quality we will get from Bansal the same as we would get with the one at $96,000.
Mayor Webster said all you can do is make sure the specs are properly written and that the low bidder is adhering to those specs. If thats the case and theres no track record of negligent work, theres no reason not to give the work to Bansal.
Mr. Galster asked will they have to have a performance bond? Mr. Parham replied yes.
Law Directors Report - no report
Engineers Report - no report
Mr. Knox said about ten years ago Mr. Vanover requested the people of Springdale to help a young man who had a presidential internship and needed some money to live on and an airline ticket to get there. We got him there and he went on from there to become a member of the United States Military Academy. Mr. Vanover and I received letters this week that read: The Superintendent and Class of 2007 of the United States Military Academy announce the graduation exercises Saturday, May 26, West Point, NY. One of the people graduating will be Second Lieutenant Joseph A. Gratton who is a Princeton High School graduate of the year 2003.
Mr. Vanover said I am quite proud because Mr. Gratton was one of my baseball kids. He will be an asset to the country.
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONS
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. Galster made a motion to adopt and Mr. Squires seconded.
Mr. Galster said if you look at Attachment A, it says this for a sign in a PUD development to advertise only businesses that are part of that subject PUD. These signs are used for the benefit of Springdale businesses. Its not like its an outdoor billboard advertisement.
Mrs. Harlow asked when is the sign going up? Will it be during the construction period?
Mr. Galster responded we dont have an application right now. We had a preliminary application from the mall but their package never included signage approval.
Mrs. Harlow said Im just concerned with the construction and the confusion that accompanies that construction. They do move the lanes around a little bit and Id hate to see signage that would take the drivers eyes of that road for any period of time at all.
Mr. Galster replied we would be concerned about that whether it is construction season or non-construction season. One of the reasons a committee was formed was to make sure we create an ordinance that addresses those issues, such as how often it could change, how bright it is, etc.
Mayor Webster stated I would hope someone wants to take advantage of this inside the next four years. I hear what you are saying about the construction but we are going to be saddled with construction on that roadway until 2010. Im very happy to see Planning Commission take a look at this. I think this is something that will have to evolve. I think its a sign of the future. It doesnt mean were going to have blinking signs all up and down SR 4 and Kemper Road and SR 747 but I think this is a real good start. This is strictly for an on-premise sign.
Mr. Vanover said we have asked Planning Commission to address the smaller developments and come forth with guidelines for those. As everyone is aware, I think this is the future of signage and I think its better to be proactive than reactive.
Ordinance 21-2007 passed with six affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 25-2007 AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH CDS ASSOCIATES, INC., TO PROCEED WITH DESIGN SERVICES TO DEVELOP FINAL PLANS AND SPECIFICATIONS FOR THE WEST KEMPER ROAD IMPROVEMENTS PROJECT AT SR 4 TO 500 FEET EAST OF HICKORY STREET AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY
Mr. Danbury made a motion to adopt and Mr. Wilson seconded.
Ordinance 25-2007 passed with six affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 26-2007 AN ORDINANCE AUTHORIZING AN AGREEMENT WITH THE OHIO DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION REGARDING IMPROVEMENTS AT THE SR 747/I-275 INTERCHANGE
Mr. Danbury made a motion to read Ordinance 26-2007 by title only. Mr. Galster seconded. The motion passed with six affirmative votes.
Mr. Knox expanded saying it says at the I275/SR 747 interchange to correct the inefficient signal phasing and geometrics by relocating westbound I275 off ramp and provide additional left turn lane from northbound SR 747 to westbound I275 including widening the westbound I275 on ramp and providing three southbound SR 747 lanes through the intersection with Ramp F.
Mr. Parham said if you look at the diagram attached to Administrators Report of Pending Legislation, the shaded areas are the improvements for this project. Adjusting the off ramp at westbound I275 at the lower part of the diagram is one of the improvements to the project. If you look at the SR747 northbound lanes youll see they are showing two left turn movements onto westbound I275 in the shaded area. The final leg is a third southbound lane on SR 747 will be added to that goes through the on ramp of westbound I275.
Mr. Galster said now Im more confused because I thought the on ramp to westbound I275 would be shown as a shaded area. Is that just on SR 747? Is there actually no work on the ramp?
Mr. Parham said right now on SR 747 if you are heading southbound, there is a lane that drops off at the on ramp. That lane will continue through the interchange.
Mr. Galster said the ordinance reads that it is a widening of the actual on-ramp, Ramp F and its not. Its actually a widening of SR 747.
Mr. Shvegzda said the original basis of this was to provide the double left from northbound SR 747 onto the westbound on ramp. There is some work done on the ramp to accommodate that second left turn lane.
ORDINANCE NO. 27- 2007 AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH HCC BENEFITS CORPORATION TO PROVIDE FOR STOP-LOSS INSURANCE AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY
Mr. Squires made a motion to adopt and Mrs. Harlow seconded.
Mr. Parham said this is our annual rate increase that we receive from our stop loss carrier, HCC Benefits, as well as Ordinance 28, our third party administrator, for the health insurance program. Unfortunately, our contract year that runs from May 1st to April 30th was not one of our best. We have a specific stop loss limit of $30,000 for each individual who is insured. We had at least five individuals to exceed that limit... It wasnt one of the healthiest years for us. Two of those five individuals are no longer employed. Another was a premature baby who is doing much better this year and making good progress. We entered into a corridor that provides some cushion for the stop loss carrier. With the corridor , we have to buy more risk above the $30,000 on a cumulative basis. The corridor number is $53,438. Once we pierce the $53,438 is when we begin to receive reimbursement from the stop loss carrier. HCC Benefits proposal increased the corridor amount from $53,438 to $55,000 for this year. This represents a 2.9 percent increase. Our rates for a single actually decreased from $57.51 per single contract to $57.20. The family coverage went from $128.73 to $131.21, a 1.9% increase. Our aggregate rate decreased from $6.65 per contract to $5.46 per contract, a 22 percent decrease.
Mr. Parham said for Ordinance 28 we were locked into a two-year rate with United Medical Resources... The only adjustment is for access to the HealthSpan Provider Network. The savings experienced by participating in the provider network has made a tremendous difference for us and our program. We average about 50 percent savings ononof our health insurance costs. The proposed rate increase would go from $5.50 to $5.75 per employee per month. I request Councils support for both ordinances.
Ordinance 27-2007 passed with six affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 28-2007 AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO AN ADMINISTRATIVE AGREEMENT WITH UNITED MEDICAL RESOURCES (UMR) AS THE THIRD PARTY ADMINISTRATOR OF THE CITYS SELF-FUNDED HEALTH INSURANCE PROGRAM AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY
Mr. Squires made a motion to adopt and Mr. Wilson seconded.
Mr. Parham said the beauty of a self-funded health insurance program is that you have the ability to design the plan to cover those things that you deem are necessary to be covered. The other part of that is that if you appropriate funds but dont spend those funds, then those still remain in your coffer. With a traditional program, once you appropriate them, you are going to spend all that you appropriate. Over the last couple of years we have not had the best seasons. We are examining a program out there very similar to our property and casualty program where we pool through Miami Valley Risk Management. There is a group that started out with school districts only. They have begun to incorporate public jurisdictions into their organization. It allows us to remain as a self-funded plan; however, it gives the appearance of a traditionally funded program. It will help us begin to stabilize some of our costs. We have a population, that once they start with us, they usually dont leave, and their dependents also join our plan. For the most part, we have a mature population. Our costs may reflect some of those situations. If everything works out as we examine this program, we may be back before you in a couple of months suggesting we look at joining this program.
Ordinance 28-2007 passed with six affirmative votes.
RESOLUTION R8-2007 EXEMPTING MUNICIPAL PURCHASES UP TO $500.00 FROM THE CERTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS OF ARTICLE VII, SECTION F. CONTRACTS AND EXPENDITURES OF THE CHARTER OF THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE
Mr. Squires made a motion to adopt and Mrs. Harlow seconded.
Mr. Knox said as was discussed at the last Council meeting, a purchase order has to be signed by two people in order to go forward, that being the City Administrator or Mayor and me. In most cases they have all three signatures. We are talking about moving away from purchase orders for things that cost between $200 and $500. We have a sheet that comes out showing all these purchase orders and that sheet must be signed by the City Administrator and me. So we are not losing control over this, we are just generating less paperwork.
Resolution R8-2007 passed with six affirmative votes.
Mr. Danbury said I have tickets for Springdale Night at the Reds game. I received a call from Jim Knippenberg at the Cincinnati Enquirer. He is putting together a story of people who do the national anthem so they will be taking a picture of the kids and it will be in the paper May 5th. The Community Center still has tickets.
Mr. Knox stated we have a request for a new liquor license, D5I for the old Karlos Restaurant. There were no objections.
Mr. Vanover said I have a letter from Walter Linnefield asking us to pass a resolution in support of HB 117 concerning the cable company.
Mr. Squires stated I would like some background. What will Springdale lose?
Mayor Webster said we can pass a resolution to join forces to protect our rights but what rights do we have? I cant endorse this.
Mr. Knox said there will be a meeting at ICRC next Thursday to discuss this. I will be attending and if anyone else would like to join me we can find out what the real objections are and where they can hurt us. As I understand it now it allows the cable companies to unilaterally drop out of the contract. We cant do it to them but they can do it to us. I can send a memo out after the meeting letting everyone know what was said at the meeting.
MEETINGS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
Opening Day - April 28
Board of Zoning Appeals - May 15
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
UPDATE ON LEGISLATION STILL IN DEVELOPMENT
Ordinance 26-2007 - May 2
RECAP OF LEGISLATIVE ITEMS REQUESTED
Cameras in the Tri County mall area - May 2
Council adjourned at 8:08 p.m.
Edward F. Knox
Clerk of Council/Finance Director
Kathy McNear, President of Council
City of Springdale Council
April 18 2007