President of Council Marjorie Harlow called Council to order on September 15, 2010, at
The governmental body and those in attendance recited the pledge of allegiance. Mrs. McNear gave the invocation.
Mrs. McNear took roll call. Present were Council members Diehl, Emerson, Galster, Squires, Vanover and Harlow. Mr. Hawkins was absent.
The minutes of September 1, 2010 were approved with six affirmative votes.
RESOLUTION NO. R 14-2010 COMMENDING POLICE OFFICER DAVID J. BUSCHMANN FOR HIS DEDICATION AND SERVICE TO THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE
Mr. Vanover made a motion to adopt and Mr. Squires seconded.
Resolution R14-2010 passed with six affirmative votes.
Mayor Webster said there are a lot of outstanding adjectives in this resolution to describe Officer Buschmann but if I had to use one word to describe Dave it would be excellence. Whoever has crossed paths with Dave has nothing but positive things to say. Ive never heard anything bad about you in thirty-two years. We will be eternally grateful to the City of Cincinnati for allowing Dave Buschmann to become a Springdale officer.
Chief Laage said Dave is definitely one of the good guys. Hes a good man, a good husband and a good father. Dave is a thirty-two year veteran. He attended Xavier High School and then received a bachelors degree in sociology at Xavier University. Dave coached soccer for a number of years and touched the lives positively of a lot of people in our community. He was the departments first canine officer. In 2001 he was involved in the arrest of Americas Most Wanted Fugitive, Clayton Lee Waagner. In 2002 Dave received the Donald Stemann Award as the Springdale Officer of the Year and Greater Cincinnati Police Appreciation Award for Contribution to Law Enforcement. We hope that you will have very many good retirement years.
Dave Buschmann said I didnt know what to think when I first started here. After a few months I was feeling pretty good about the job and the officers I was working with. I had been laid off from the Cincinnati PD and I was glad to get back on a police force. Then a phone call came from Cincinnati PD saying they were hiring back the officers they had laid off. I talked to my wife and we decided to stay in Springdale. Then I got another call from Cincinnati and the answer was the same. About a week later there was an envelope in my mail box from Cecil Osborn and I thought, if thats got a pink slip in it I made a big, big mistake. But there was no pink slip. There was a note from Mr. Osborn thanking me for staying with the City of Springdale and not going back to Cincinnati. That note told me a lot about the Springdale family. Tonight I want to say thanks for allowing me to have a wonderful career in a wonderful place. Having worked and sometimes lived in Springdale, I have had the opportunity to meet some of the greatest people on earth. Many are right here in this room. I thank you all for your friendship.
Mrs. McNear, Mr. Vanover, Mr. Squires, Mr. Diehl, Mrs. Emerson and Mrs. Harlow expressed their thanks to Officer Buschmann.
Mrs. Buschmann said Springdale is a great place to work and raise kids.
Cincinnati USA Partnership Status and Success of Partnership, Benefit to Springdale - Julia Muntel
Mr. Parham said Julia Muntel from the Cincinnati USA Partnership is with us this evening. Over the years the City has been a contributor to the Greater Cincinnati Partnership (the Cincinnati Chamber, the Blue Chip Program). In our minds it has been a very good working relationship for the City and the Chamber. Weve asked Julia to come this evening and present to you some of the information relative to our relationship, some of the benefits of the City being associated with the Chamber and hopefully some of the successes we have experienced, if not directly in Springdale but throughout the Greater Cincinnati Chamber.
Ms. Muntel said I will discuss the overview of the Cincinnati USA Partnership, how we fit in with the regional Chamber, the process of economic development and leads and prospects, and what you get out of your investment. Ms. Muntel said the Chamber includes southeastern Indiana, northern Kentucky and up past Middletown. Over eighty percent of new investment and new jobs comes from existing businesses. We work tirelessly to retain our local businesses. Springdale gets lead generation, assistance in closing deals, technical support, and business information. Information resources available are demographics and statistics, real estate locator, executive pulse, and marketing support. We appreciate your investment in the partnership. It helps promote this region globally and supports and enhances the regional business climate.
Mayor Webster said I cant remember us not being a part of this. The level of commitment is $10,000. We thought it was a very worthwhile investment.
Ms. Muntel stated the Blue Chip campaign started twenty-five years ago and Springdale has been a long time investor.
Mr. Diehl said there are about a dozen communities investing from $5,000 to $50,000. Is there a disadvantage to a community that is not an investor over a community that is an investor?
Ms. Muntel responded there are over a dozen investors and the range is up to over $100,000. We sell this region. If someone is interested in Cincinnati, then we show them what is available. We are not going to pass up the opportunity to have new jobs come in. There are benefits at certain levels of investment.
Mr. Diehl said I agree with the trickle down effect but can you point to one direct investment we have had in the community in the last five to ten years?
Ms. Muntel replied let me research that.
Mr. Squires stated if a business is considering Springdale, even if we dont get it, theres a good chance it will stay in the region. That benefits a lot of people.
Mr. Vanover asked wasnt the Chamber involved in the international enterprise with Avon?
Mr. Parham replied yes they were. I think it was called the Foreign Trade Zone.
Mr. Vanover said we did receive a direct benefit from that. When a business goes into another community in our region we benefit from shopping, spin offs, etc. It is beneficial.
Mrs. Emerson said the big difference between the $5,000 level and the $10,000 is the ability to draw from databases.
Ms. Muntel said it is the ability to receive information directly for prospects. There are other benefits at the $10,000 level beyond the $5,000 and Id be happy to e-mail them to you.
Mr. Galster stated what is good for Greater Cincinnati is good for the surrounding communities. If the overall health of the City is good, Springdales will be good. You need to lobby representatives to allow incentives to retain employers in established communities. Its a lot tougher to redevelop a brown field than a green field. We may lose out on someone who wants to move from downtown Cincinnati to Springdale, but I think in general most of it is going out to undeveloped areas. You may lose partners if we cant compete with the grass fields.
Ms. Muntel said we are in total agreement because there is no benefit from a business moving twenty miles down the road. That pits one community against another.
Mayor Webster said you cant really get the States attention unless a company is leaving the State. I think all the Chamber can do is be an advocate.
Mr. Parham said there are some features the State has in place to try to prevent one company relocating from one place in the State to another. There are incentives in place that state, if you cannot expand at your current location or in another location within that community, then the State will offer a waiver and grant you that incentive package. When the company tells the State that they are considering moving their business out of State, the State will move forward with the incentive because they dont want the company to leave their jurisdictions. The same thing occurs in Indiana and Kentucky as well. There are four levels of contribution at the Chamber: Team 100 at $10,000 to $24,999 (there are 11 communities participating at that level); Stewards at $25,000 to $49,999 (has 4 communities contributing); Partners at $50,000 to $99,999 (have 2 contributors); and Directors at $100,000 plus has 2 contributors. The City of Cincinnati and Duke Energy contribute at the Directors level. The advantage we enjoy through our participation with the Partnership is the long arm of economic development that goes out internationally as well as nationally for us. We do not have the resources to send Jeff Tullock, Economic Development Director out on even a national basis. The foreign trade zone was ten to fifteen years ago but the Chamber was very helpful in helping us establish that for Avon. Early on in my career here we had the opportunity to sit at the table with a group called Blue Angels. They were out of Tulsa and it was Marathon Oil who was leveraging Ohio against the State of Oklahoma to give them what they needed. They eventually got what they needed and stayed in Tulsa. There was a group out of India that we had a chance to compete for also. There are times we do get the chance to sit at the table and sell the City of Springdales attributes, services and what we can offer that organization. Unfortunately, a lot of times what we have to offer does not fit what that organization is looking for but I think the investment we make with the Chamber is a very wise investment, very beneficial for our community, and as we have heard tonight, although it doesnt sit in Springdale directly, there are benefits to our community with the retail, restaurants, the individuals who live here and have an opportunity to compete for jobs.
COMMITTEE AND OFFICIAL REPORTS
Civil Service Commission - no report
Rules and Laws - Mrs. Emerson reported Rules and Laws of Council special committee met September 8. They continue to work on Rules of Council.
Mrs. Harlow asked do you know when you might bring any drafts before Council for review.
Mrs. Emerson responded in the next week or so Ill be meeting with Mr. Hawkins and Mr. Forbes to draw up some rough drafts.
Finance Committee - no report
Planning Commission - Mr. Galster stated Entenmanns Bakery wanted to add three logo signs on the side of the building. The landlord was there representing Entenmanns and he has in his covenants that everything should be raceway type channel letters. The request was denied. Tri County Towne Center asked for modification to the PUD looking for signs on their out building and landscaping plans. The signs were denied and the landscaping was tabled as we are waiting for more details.
Board of Zoning Appeals - no report
Board of Health Mr. Squires said the food licensing fees for 2011 were discussed. As they are less than they were for 2010, we have asked the Health Commissioner to rework the numbers. National Drug Take Back Day is September 25 and residents are encouraged to bring in any expired or no longer used drugs for disposal. The State Subsidy to Boards of Health has been cut by forty percent. The local schools were inspected and Heritage Hill and Springdale Elementary both have roof issues and Heritage Hill also has concrete and water fountain issues. Calvary Christian School has air quality issues. The 2010 flu clinic will be held October 19.
Mrs. Harlow said I talked to the man in charge of maintenance at Princeton Board of Education and he said there was a failure of the roofs. They are being replaced under warranty.
Mr. Vanover said the Potomac River is experiencing big problems with drugs getting into their systems. It seems to be primarily birth control pills creating a lot of problems. Cincinnati has one of the finest water purification systems in the nation so it picks up a lot of stuff but a lot of communities have less and these drugs do not come out of the water system. If you have old drugs this is a safe and efficient way to get rid of them.
O-K-I - no report
Mayors Report Mayor Webster said Shirley Fassnacht invited my wife and I to the forty-third Senior Citizens Hall of Fame Recognition Banquet. Barb and Harold Dauer of Springdale were being inducted into this Hall of Fame. Mayor Webster read a proclamation in honor of Harold and Barb Dauer.
Clerk of Council/Finance Director - no report
Administrators Report Mr. Parham stated at the last meeting you authorized a resolution allowing me to complete an application for three State Capital Improvement Projects. One was the Merchant Street project that we didnt feel very confident about being able to receive any funding. The second was SR 747 northbound to I-275 westbound additional turn lane. We felt we could score pretty well on that one. We have already received funding through the CMAQ program at a 70/30 split which leaves us with about $90,000 in construction costs. We were also going to apply for OPWC funding in the amount of $81,000; thereby leaving us with $9,000 in construction costs. We felt pretty comfortable with that application. The third project is the Century Boulevard North repair program. There was some discussion on that project at the last meeting. The Mayor and I wanted to bring that back before you just to get a feel from you as we continue to go further into the numbers. This Friday is the deadline for submitting the applications for OPWC Funding. We have decided not to include the Merchant Street project as part of the application process because we dont think we are going to score well and we dont want to insult the committee by continuing to apply for one that we dont think will score well. We clearly want to apply for the SR 747/I-275 project which has the potential of reducing our costs to $9,000. The Century Boulevard project is the one we want to discuss with you this evening. The estimated construction cost for the project is $535,000. We are planning to apply for a breakdown of funding at 70% SCIP funding, 30% local funding. Our 30% share would be $160,500. The SCIP share would be $374,500. Construction engineering is generally 10% which would be $53,500. Design engineering at 10% is another $53,500. If you combine the Citys total contribution for the project of $535,000, the Citys share would be $267,500. The Mayor and I rode over there today. There are gaping holes in the roadway. The plan is to remove the concrete and repave the road in asphalt. We would have to replace the curbs and add catch basins. Were just beginning to enter into the budget process. Last year we were estimating to have $2.5 million at the end of 2010. Over the next couple of years, our balance is projected to continue to deteriorate. Part of that calculation was the loss of additional jobs in the second phase at GE. We were told those would happen for certain last year. At this point, there has been an RFP that GE has put out that we can compete for those jobs.
Mayor Webster said when Mr. Parham and I went over the numbers my knee-jerk reaction was no, we dont want to do this. Is there any way we can patch it? I think we have to be aware that if we patch it, those are throw away dollars. Sooner or later that street will have to be done. We have an opportunity to get around $375,000 if we have another $260,000 to match that. Lets assume we are successful and we get the funding. Do we want to take $260,000 out of our limited capital improvement budget and redo that road? With living with the Northland Boulevard project where we get all this money from the federal government to help us with this project, and now as you see in Derricks report, we are going to be bringing in an ordinance for $400,000 to cover the overrun on that project. What do we do if we dig this concrete slab street up next summer expecting to spend $260,000 of our limited capital improvement budget and we run into another $400,000 rat hole? I personally am not willing to take that chance. We have other needs in this community. I hate to walk away from $375,000 but I think that theres a time to play and a time to fold. In this case, Im not willing to make the application. Now, if you want to go halfway we can instruct Mr. Parham to submit the application on Friday, wait until we get all the budget numbers in and then see where we stand financially, and then at that point pull the project. I dont think theyd like you to do that but weve never done it before. My personal recommendation is that we do that or walk away.
Mrs. Emerson asked what does it hurt to wait a year or two. Can we reapply and get funding at a later date or will it deteriorate so much in two years that the catch up costs will be outrageous?
Mayor Webster said I think some repairs will have to be made. We have potholes that can damage vehicles. I think we have to spend some money and I have no idea how much it would cost to fix those potholes. We can reapply but if we spend $10,000 patching it up, its thrown away money. Were going to have to come back and do the street. Who knows what will be out there the next cycle.
Mr. Parham stated typically when funds come available, the City of Cincinnati and Hamilton County are the really big recipients of these funds and they are usually large projects. This particular year the City of Cincinnati has indicated that they are not going to apply for any large ticket projects so that leaves available an opportunity for Springdale and other local jurisdictions to have a better chance to receive these funds. Next year we dont know whether that will be the case or not. I understand the Mayors concern. Northland Boulevard is a concrete street with an asphalt overlay. If you look at the photographs of Century Boulevard, youll see the deterioration on transverse joints and longitudinal joints. At Northland we took the asphalt off and then we found those problems and tried to fix them leaving the concrete base there. In this project, were removing the entire concrete base so we shouldnt have the same issues with the horizontal and verticals joints. The concern is, because we dont want another Northland, is that the subgrade has to be mush (or peanut butter) in order for us to have a similar situation as Northland. We have had some construction there in the past and did not find that to be the case with the subgrade but there is no guarantee with that. If we thought we wanted to attempt to move forward, we could put the application in, look at the budget figures, and in the interim drill a number of bores to try to determine what is down there. If we find out there is mush or peanut butter, you walk away from it. If you find out there isnt any problems, and the budget numbers suggest we have the funds and you decide you want to go after those funds this year, then the opportunity is there.
Mr. Galster stated since we are taking out concrete and getting down to the subfloor of the street it is highly unlikely that any major add would need to be looked at to bring that up to a good supporting surface. Its just dirt that we would have to clean up to make that happen as opposed to sawing out concrete like they are doing on Northland Boulevard. When would we expect to know about the award of these funds, three months from now, six months from now?
Mr. Shvegzda responded the applications are submitted this Friday; they will review them and have the preliminary information in November. The funds dont become available until the middle part of next year.
Mr. Galster said with the Northland Boulevard project sitting out there with a $400,000 cost overrun for a free project, you have to be leery of making sure that the money is there. Just because we think it might be doesnt mean we should spend additional money. I agree we should wait for the budget process to run. Lets find out if we can fit that into our budget but I think it would be okay to file for it. If were not successful, were not looking at it anyway. If we are, we have to decide if this is the one capital improvement project were going to do throughout the City in all of 2011. If, in fact, were able to get fifty percent paid for, then we have to make a decision if the budget can handle it. At the same time, we will have gone through the budget process and well have identified where we stand exactly, and probably have a better feel for the job situation you were talking about. If we find we dont have it in our budget we return the funds so to speak.
Mr. Vanover said we found out the hard way about concrete streets. It looks from these pictures that there are moisture problems. If we apply, is there going to be penalties if we are successful in getting the funding, then say no? Id hate to jeopardize future funding attempts.
Mr. Parham said in our first discussion with Mr. Shvegzda and Mr. Agricola they indicated we may be penalized. Weve never applied and turned money back in but considering we were sitting at the Engineers table a couple of weeks ago begging for assistance for the Northland project, they understand the predicament were in. They understand our financial situation. If we decide early enough we can contact them and ask them to release those funds to some other project.
Mayor Webster said the penalty would not be financial. The penalty would come by possibly not getting the money in the future. Right now we have an excellent reputation. Weve never walked away from a grant.
Mr. Parham said when we met with the County they pointed out how generous they had been to us over the years. Weve been one of those communities that over the years received more than what we put into the system. They do have to balance that with the other jurisdictions. We can always understand that Century Blvd. is not going to get any better unless we do something to it. If we dont apply this year it may be even worse next year.
Mrs. Emerson said I question why tarnish our reputation for $267,000 for a project on a road with very little traffic. Thats an awful lot of money to even pursue this and realistically are we truly going to do this.
Mr. Parham responded I think we have a very good working relationship with the County Engineer. Again, we were just in their office and they were trying to find creative ways of helping us find dollars for that project. I really dont think because we sat at that table with them that our reputation is going to be all that tarnished. I outlined some of the financial constraints at that time. The businesses on that street are just like the businesses on any other street in this community. We owe it to them to make sure we take care of that road. There are pretty large gaping holes. We do go back and patch those holes and we will continue to patch those holes until we are able to go in and fix that road properly.
Mrs. Emerson replied I agree with you but I dont think now is the time.
Mr. Parham stated we may not get the funds at some other time so Im not sure when the time will be right.
Mr. Diehl suggested we submit the application and see where we are down the road.
Mayor Webster said that is fine with me. We will do some of the core borings and see if we can find out whats underneath the base.
Mr. Parham stated we will communicate to you when and if we get an indication that we are successful. At the same time its going to be a much scrutinized process as we go through the budget. We need to have the funds before we can do it.
Mrs. Harlow asked did the Engineers office offer any hope for assistance on the Northland Boulevard project.
Mr. Parham replied no. The funds for this year are extremely limited. They even considered funding from next year but if they pull out of a future year to help us, that doesnt go over well with other jurisdictions. Theyve never done that before and they dont want to set that precedence. As we sat there they tried to come up with other creative ways in which maybe we could receive funding from them for some other project and possibly could have used those funds for this project, and then somehow we would have to pay for the ones that we were going to be awarded on those projects but they indicated they do not have anything available.
Law Directors Report Mr. Forbes said I have a status update on the hotel. As we talked about before, Broadway Bank had filed a foreclosure action against the owner of the hotel. Broadway Bank was then closed. FDIC stepped in. MB Financial Bank acquired the assets of Broadway Bank. They expressed interest in the hotel. MB Financial has formally substituted itself into the foreclosure action. The same day they substituted themselves in as the proper plaintiff they also filed an emergency motion with the court to have a receiver appointed which is what we had hoped for early on. The receiver has been appointed and has made contact with the City to begin to formulate his plan on how to remediate the property. MB Financial is taking a very proactive stance to protect what will now be their asset.
Mr. Parham said we have been in contact with the receiver, Raymond Frye. The Fire Chief has met with him on a number of occasions very early on and provided copies of the citations to him. They had thirty days to show some effort that they were going to bring it into compliance. Mr. Frye has been extremely responsive and he has at this point contacted a liquidator. The plan they have is, through this liquidator, to liquidate the assets in the hotel. There is a lot of new furniture, tiles, bathtubs, etc. The plan is to have a sale of new furniture and the target audience would be hotels that are smaller that may need equipment to upgrade. At the same time there is older furniture that they desire to sell as well. We have told them this cannot be an open process where John Doe, citizen, just comes in and walks around because the facility is still not in compliance with the fire code. It has to be a private, closed process where there is one on one contact. Mr. Frye is awaiting approval from MB Financial to sell the new furniture. MB Financial is researching to make sure there are no liens on that furniture. We know what happened with the previous bank and it is possible that they never paid for the furniture. The Fire Chief was at the hotel yesterday and noticed that one of the dumpsters had old furniture, televisions, and tiles in it. Individuals have been gaining access to the hotel, stealing the copper and destroying the ceiling tiles to get to the copper. Mr. Fryes group cleaned out everything they identified as debris and what is remaining is the furniture. We dont feel a need to pressure them about the thirty day time. They are doing things to clean up that site. The unfortunate part is that we believe their intention is to bring the hotel into compliance by removing all the combustibles, furniture, etc. and then simply close the doors until the bank decides what to do with the property. As Mr. Forbes as indicated the legal process is still ongoing.
Engineers Report Mr. Shvegzda said on the Northland Boulevard project, last week the concrete repair was completed on the portion of the roadway west of SR 4. Sometime the week of September 20 they will be applying a stress absorbing membrane that protects the concrete base from moisture and retards the rate that the cracking will come back up through the asphalt surface again. Shortly after that the asphalt surface of lanes that havent been paved yet will occur. The completion date has been requested to be delayed until the end of September.
On the Zone A flood insurance study we have met with Mr. McErlane who is the flood plain administrator for the City. We will submit the information to FEMA to remove the requirement of certain properties from having to acquire flood insurance. We expect to do that by the end of the month.
The SR 747/I-275 ramp modification OPWC application will go in that will note that we get seventy percent funded from ODOT, twenty-seven percent from OPWC and three percent local. We also have submitted an MRF application to cover both the design cost and environmental document preparation cost. We will find out about the OPWC and MRF funding in November.
COMMUNICATIONS - none
ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONS
ORDINANCE NO. 29- 2010 AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ACCEPT THE SIGN EASEMENT LOCATED AT THE SOUTHEAST CORNER OF KEMPER ROAD AND PRINCETON PIKE AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY (SPRINGDALE POINTE)
Mr. Galster made a motion that Ordinance 29-2010 be tabled until the next meeting. Mr. Vanover seconded. The motion passed with six affirmative votes.
OLD BUSINESS - none
Mrs. McNear reported October 8, 2010 will be government officials night at Princeton. The homecoming parade is at 5:00 p.m.
MEETINGS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
Board of Health - October 14
Rules of Council - October 27
Mr. Parham said a couple of months ago you provided a resolution recognizing BHE for their solar work and energy savings. They have scheduled a solar tour open house for Saturday, October 2, 2010 from 1 to 4 p.m. at 11733 Chesterdale Road. They are inviting the public and are hoping to have an opportunity to give you access using a lift truck to give you a view of their outside panels to see how they actually function.
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
UPDATE ON LEGISLATION STILL IN DEVELOPMENT
Ordinance 29-2010 - October 6
RECAP OF LEGISLATIVE ITEMS REQUESTED - none
Council adjourned at 9:29 p.m.
Clerk of Council/Finance Director
Marjorie Harlow, President of Council