Council was called to order on July 2, 1997 at 7:00 p.m. by President of Council Randy Danbury.
The Pledge of Allegiance was recited by the governmental body and those in attendance.
Roll call was taken by Mr. Knox. Present were Council members Boice, Galster, Manis, McNear, Vanover, and Danbury. Mr. Wilson was absent due to a death in the family.
The minutes of June 18, 1997 were not available.
COMMUNICATIONS - none
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE
James Patterson, 722 Yorkhaven Road, said I am a two year resident of Springdale. I am not representing anybody but myself and I come to you tonight with a problem I have with your policy on the apron repair. I received a letter in April stating I needed to have the apron corrected by June 16. Unlike a lot of people, $800 for the cost of the repair is a lot of money for my family so we decided to go outside the City and contract the work. On May 21 I entered into a contract with a subcontractor outside the city. The letter I received said I had to have the work completed by June 16. I contacted the Street Department, who was very cordial, and they shared with me that there had been so many comments that they were extending the deadline. As long as I had applied for the permit by June 16 I would be taken care of. I contacted them again on June 14 and I found out the contractor had not applied, at which time I contacted my subcontractor. I later found out that he did apply for a permit on June 16. Last night a neighbor came and said if my apron is not repaired by July 7 the City would repair it. I was never informed of that. I was really aggravated about that. I contacted the Maintenance Department today and they did inform me today that if I do not have the work done by July 7 the City will take care of it. I live on Yorkhaven Road which is one of the first streets to be repaired. I feel it is unfair. That's why I came to City Council tonight asking if we could have a stay. I have given the subcontractor $230. Maybe that was bad judgment at the time but I felt he was a good contractor and he was fair. I know there were 80 other people in the same situation and I am disappointed that I'm the only one here tonight. If Council doesn't extend this I will lose the $238. There are another 80 people who could lose approximately $200 for a total of over $16,000. I understand why we need to have this done. The City Solicitor said this will improve the infrastructure of the City. I agree. However, costing me an additional $200 because I was not informed of the July 7 date does not seem fair to me.
Mayor Webster said I did get your message today and I left a message on your voice mail. We are very well aware that a contractor has 80 outstanding permits. The City is not going to intervene and put in new driveway aprons. We are going to let the contractor run his course. We're going to tell our contractor to ignore your address and the other 79 people who have permits outstanding to do that work. Trust your contractor that it will get done. If it doesn't get done, we will be back knocking on your door next year. Needless to say, if we have to go in and do a driveway on one street, one over here, etc. then it will probably cost a lot more money. Hopefully that won't happen, especially if you have a good contract and you've paid 1/3 of your money down already. We are very much aware of the predicament you and 79 other residents are in. We are not going to idly stand by and say go ahead and do it because the contractor didn't perform.
Mr. Osborn said I do have a great deal of sympathy for those put in that position by the contractor. The contractor knew he had to apply for permits by June 16. He turned all his applications in on June 16. He had contracts from April that he turned in June 16. He is turning all these in within weeks of the time we've told everybody the work has to be complete. It is unfair to our residents and we are going to do exactly what the Mayor said. Part of the situation we are in is because of the way the contractor has attempted to solicit business. Next time we will be setting up a more specific timeframe for various elements of this. The permits will be time specific. It's a regrettable situation. Given the facts we will let these 80 slide. We don't have much choice because the residents would be the ones disadvantaged by this. We have every right to go in and replace those aprons because we did give notice. We gave notice for June 16 and we did extend that until July 7 and we let everybody know that. Given the circumstances we will allow that contractor to do those 80. We will be inspecting them and hopefully he will do his work correctly and we'll be totally satisfied with his work. A combination of events led us to this point and regrettably it has put the resident in the middle.
Mr. Danbury said we appreciate the fact that you came before us. Please don't feel nervous.
Mayor Webster asked David Strange and Fred Borden to come forward to be sworn in for the Equalization Board.
Mayor Webster said I have a human interest story regarding the driveway apron program. Six residents filed for a hearing. Two of them struck a chord with me, two widowed senior citizen ladies with limited resources. One is relatively ill. Neither could afford the assessment. I took it upon myself to raise the 856.65 that was necessary. I am very proud that I live in the City of Springdale and equally proud that this City has several fine organizations but the three that I approached, the Springdale Kiwanis, the Springdale Rotary and the Forest Park/Springdale Lions Club all said they would pay a third of the cost for these two ladies. I will be getting a check made payable to the City of Springdale for $285.55 from each of these fine organizations. It's very heartwarming to know you know you live in a community where there are organizations that care about people. My thanks go out to all three of those organizations. The residents have been notified that they do not have to show up for the appeals board.
Ms. Manis said I had June 16 as the last permit date. Was there a date that it had to be repaired by?
Mr. Osborn responded the letter said the work had to be completed by June 16. People called and said they couldn't get the work done by that date. We agreed to extend that until July 7. There is a time schedule to get the assessment filing done. There have been articles in the paper, announcements at City Council and an article in the newsletter giving both dates, the last date to get the permit and the last date to get the work done.
Ms. Manis said I figured if you got a permit they would know.
Mr. Osborn said if the work doesn't get done we have gone through this exercise for nothing.
Mr. Knox said there will be four ladies and gentlemen appearing before the board. Those people have been informed by certified letter. In this evening's Tri County Press, there is a statement that says residents who think their aprons don't need to be repaired may appeal. That is not correct. Only those people who have received the letter should come. The City had no idea this was going to happen. We should apologize but it was not our fault.
Mr. Osborn said the appeal process notice was sent as a certified letter to every person who was ordered to have his/her apron repaired. We had far more than six notify us. For whatever reasons approximately 18 names got down to the final six. The information in the press is grossly incorrect. Every resident who received a notice received information of the appeals process.
ORDINANCE NO. 52-1997 "AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO AN AGREEMENT RELATIVE TO THE IMPROVEMENT OF E. CRESCENTVILLE ROAD BETWEEN THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE AND THE BOARD OF BUTLER COUNTY COMMISSIONERS"
Mr. Vanover made a motion to adopt and Mr. Galster seconded.
Ordinance 52-1997 passed with 6 affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 53-1997 "ACCEPTING DEDICATION OF NORTHWEST BUSINESS CENTER, AND THE PUBLIC IMPROVEMENTS CONTAINED THEREIN, RELEASING THE PERFORMANCE BOND AND ESTABLISHING A MAINTENANCE BOND"
Mr. Knox said we have received the performance bond.
Mr. Shuler said the plat for the subdivision is in recorder's book 315, pages 40 and 41.
RESOLUTION NO. R11-1997 "CALLING UPON THE GOVERNMENTAL ACCOUNTING STANDARDS BOARD TO REVISE THE STANDARDS FOR ACCOUNTING AND FINANCIAL STATEMENTS FOR THE BASIC FINANCIAL STATEMENTS FOR STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS"
Mr. Osborn said this is the first time Springdale has used this particular budget cycle. As you've know, we have in fact, done our appropriations budget at this time of year. One of the disadvantages that has put us in is the requirement to forecast 18 months of expenditures and revenue. In order to shorten that period of projection we have gone to a system used in every other jurisdiction in Ohio, and that is to do a tax budget in the spring that submits an estimate of revenues to the County Budget Commission. They give you certification indicating that they agree that you have the capacity to raise that amount of revenue for the following year. In the fall we'll do a formal appropriations budget that we're accustomed to doing in the spring. We have put together a budget schedule for the five year budget and the annual appropriation budget which I will forward to Council. We will send the worksheets to the department directors for the five year budget on September 2. We'll go through the normal process and right now we're projecting to have the annual budget appropriation workshop with Council on December 3 and the public hearing on December 17. I will forward that schedule to you. It is tentative subject to the terms of committee meetings and Council meetings at your discretion and the Finance Chairman's discretion.
We are reporting to the Budget Commission what we believe to be our capacity to raise revenues for 1998 as well as a general statement of the types of expenditures and levels of expenditures we expect to make. The expenditure side is far more general in nature, not as detailed or refined as we are accustomed to doing. We are required to submit this budget under state law by July 18. The document you have collects the information that will go on a different form but will be the same numbers you are looking at this evening. One general exception is that our numbers that you see this evening, split out the costs for the insurance trust fund and the health insurance trust fund because we have traditionally treated those as stand alone funds so that we can keep a closer watch on those two issues. For accounting purposes, however, under GAAP method of accounting, these are considered operating expenses and they are rolled back into our general fund costs when we do our formal report to the Budget Commission.
The first page following the cover letter is a general summary of the general fund. We make predictions even though we made modifications to general fund revenues for 1997 based on year to date. We're still projecting revenues for 1997 that are, in fact, $300,000 less than we collected in 1996. The revenue projections are very conservative. The revenue for 1998 uses the same formulas we use in the five year budget process.
Page 1 contains general fund revenues broken down into more detail.
Page 2 starts the expenditure side of the general fund and contains information on the Police and Fire Departments.
Page 3 continues the expenditures from the general fund and covers the Health Department and Parks and Recreation Department.
Page 4 continues expenditures and covers the Building Department, waste collections and Public Works.
Page 5 is the beginning of the general government section of the budget.
Page 6 is the conclusion of the general government and also includes the total expenditures and the estimated unencumbered funds balance at the end of that year.
Page 7 is a summary of all other funds with the exception of the two we will get to do in a little bit. These funds are broken down into governmental, proprietary and fiduciary funds.
Page 8 is the breakdown of the insurance trust fund. We fee that the health insurance trust fund and insurance trust fund, despite the fact that the accountants consider these to be operating expenses, we like to keep a spotlight on these for accountability because they do involve larger amounts of money and they do have some complexity to them and some nuances we need to stay on top of.
In the insurance trust fund on page 8, we are doing well with the fund. It was established in the early 1980s when you could not buy insurance. There was no way a municipality could buy insurance. We transferred $500,000 a year for four years to the insurance trust fund to self insure because we couldn't get any coverage beyond $500,000 for such things as police liability. We built up this reserve to cover unfunded contingencies. Once we had it in place we then determined that we would pay for all of our insurance costs out of this fund but claims and premiums. In the decade since we started this program we have been able to provide insurance for the City and the principal has shrunk only by $250,000. Over a ten year period that's not a bad factor. In a sense we have been living off the expense and eating into the principle when necessary to cover settlements or premiums. We are in a pooled program now and that does continue to help us save several funds.
The fund that we keep separate despite the accounting principles is the health insurance trust fund. This could be a very volatile, high risk fund in terms of liability. Again, we are in good shape in this fund. We have experienced a very heavy loss history in 1996. As you'll notice on calendar year 1996 our losses were almost $650,000. One factor you have to keep in mind is that the calendar year we budget off of and the contract year for the insurance are out of sync by about five months. You can't really capture a contract year in the budget year. It's a snapshot of the point in time that captures the back end of one contract year and the front end of another contract year. Nevertheless, another factor I think I need to point out here, is if you look under Revenues and Transfers, we support this fund through the transfers from general fund. In 1996 we transferred only $350,000 and those of you who were on Council in 1995 may recall I was suggesting at that time that we had a pretty good surplus in that fund and I was taking a premium from the insurance trust fund to help protect the general fund. Since that point we have begun ramping up the transfer to the insurance trust fund because of these growing expenses we have seen. In 1997 we are budgeted to transfer $450,000 and right now we're projecting a $500,000 transfer in 1998. One item that is not on here but brings us closer to a good number, under Reimbursements we will experience a substantial amount of reimbursements from contract year 1996/1997, the contract year that ended in May, because we have exceeded our attachment point.
Mr. Parham said the attachment point was around $500,000.
Mr. Osborn said we will get the difference between the $500,000 and our actual experience.
Mr. Parham stated the actual experience was close to $614,000.
Mr. Osborn said we are looking at a reimbursement from our stop loss carrier somewhere in the neighborhood of $125,000 that will be added as a source of revenue for this fund and is not yet reflected as part of these numbers for 1997. This is just a quick walk through of this document and how we're proceeding with this process this year. At this point I'll defer to you, Madam Chairman.
Ms. Manis said the capital improvement numbers are taken from the five year plan. We had a meeting last week and no changes were made. We recommend it to Council as is.
Public hearing closed.
Mrs. McNear made a motion to adopt and Mr. Vanover seconded.
Ms. Manis asked will the amount we put into the last fund change when we know the amount of the refund.
Mr. Osborn replied yes, I would certainly hope by the time we are into our traditional budget process we will have a good number there.
Mr. Danbury said you mentioned the projections for 1997 look like they're $300,000 less than 1996.
Mr. Osborn responded I am saying that our numbers for 1997 were probably another $200,000 to $300,000 below 1996 actual collections. That is what is in our budget right now. If you look at the budget right now we're probably $500,000 to $600,000 in projected revenue below what we actually collected in 1996. We didn't want to go all that way but we felt we had make up a little bit to make it a little more accurate and based on what we could see after four months' experience, we closed that gap a little bit. By the time we get around to the formal process this fall we'll modify that number again and I fully expect to see a number higher than our 1996 collections. If you saw our earnings tax report for June we are in double digit growth so that's a pretty strong number given the number of months we are into the year. I'm very optimistic about our revenues for 1997.
Ms. Manis said we are not tied into these numbers in any way.
Mr. Osborn stated that is correct. This is just an effort to put a document before the Budget Commission to give them a picture of where we are going. We'll get a certification from the Budget Commission in the next budget year just as this year. We may have to go back for an amended certificate of estimated resources. Right now this is an estimate. We have the option and the obligation, if we exceed these numbers, to go back to the Budget Commission, to say this is what we are doing and why we feel we can justify those higher numbers.
Resolution R10-1997 passed with 6 affirmative votes.
RESOLUTION NO. R11-1997 "CALLING UPON THE GOVERNMENTAL ACCOUNTING STANDARDS BOARD TO REVISE THE STANDARDS FOR ACCOUNTING AND FINANCIAL STATEMENTS FOR THE BASIC FINANCIAL STATEMENTS FOR STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT"
Mrs. McNear made a motion to adopt and Mr. Vanover seconded.
Ms. Manis said after hearing this I think someone should say what it's for, for those who are hearing it for the first time.
Mr. Knox said the Ohio Municipal League sent us a copy of a document prepared by a Mr. Rose, a CPA, and he pointed out the deficiencies in the proposed document that the people in Washington have sent out the exposure draft on. As he points out, this method of accounting is entirely different than what's been used before. It is not useful to us or to the citizenry. In some cases it can be misleading and it is essentially useless. He requested and after I read it, I agreed, and I gave it to Mrs. Burton and she agreed, that we should do something to tell the people who are trying to promulgate this thing how we feel about it because it is not worthwhile. It is an exercise in futility. That's the basis for this resolution.
Mrs. Boice asked Mr. Knox, it always bugs me when we get this Governmental Accounting Standards Board, do we have any names with this board? Who are these people? Do we know?
Mr. Knox replied no, that was not provided to us.
Mrs. Boice asked it's not any of our representatives or senators? It's a board appointed by someone in Washington.
Mr. Knox replied it's one of those nameless, faceless organizations.
Resolution R11-1997 passed with 6 affirmative votes.
Ms. Manis said on trees Mr. Sears was supposed to talk with Mrs. Barnett so I don't know what's specifically going on with her. I just wanted to say that I think we need to put our policy in the newsletter since we know all those trees have about reached their maturity and tell the residents we may be chopping down your tree without your knowledge so people are aware and we don't get in this situation again.
Mr. Danbury asked Mr. Shuler, do we have a timetable as to when the roadwork is going to be done, in particular, paving Cameron Road?
Mr. Shuler replied no. Our contractor is in town and has started his work. I was just thinking as you asked the question. We moved up the completion dates on all of our projects this year so we didn't get into the situation of trying to finish things up in November/December. I believe we have early October completion dates on those projects. Mr. Sears may have a schedule of the work from the contractor but I don't remember a specific date when that particular area is going to be done but we can ask the contractor if there is a conflict we should avoid for some reason.
Mr. Danbury said I wondered if all the rain we have had is pushing everything back.
Mr. Shuler responded it really hasn't bothered us too much. We have the work done on S. R. 747. The median work is done there. They are now working on the widening by the interstate. They are starting to work around the City doing the curb and concrete repair. All that work has to be done first before our asphalt work. I would guess that probably you would see the majority of the asphalt work being done in late August and September.
Mr. Vanover said that's all part of the street program. According to Public Works, it should be completed in September.
Mr. Danbury said we have a request from Dave and Buster's for a liquor license, D5-1, beer 1 and liquor in the containers on premises until 2:30 a.m. There were no objections.
Mr. Osborn said I just wanted to open discussion with Council on another 1997 budget item. This happens to be a general fund budget item that deals with the creation of a PC network within the City organization. The system we are envisioning would involve both fiber optic and lease line connections for the more remote buildings. I might add that the issue has been the topic for a committee made up of David Butsch, assistant superintendent of Public Works; Debbie Dunfee; Rhonda Burton; Derrick Parham and me. The committee has been working since the beginning of the year on this topic. We've looked at a lot of different technologies. We've talked to a lot of different people. We've been to both ends of the spectrum in terms of all fiber optic or all telephone and we've been working with a consultant to help us with the technical issues. As a result we have come up with a concept that would involve a backbone for the network involving both fiber optic and telephone as I indicated. The Fire Department and the Police Department would be connected to the server here in the Municipal Building by fiber optic. The Community Center and Maintenance Department would be connected by lease line. We found that the payback cost for the fiber installation to the Community Center was not sufficient in comparing it to a lease line situation. Until costs come down we feel this is the more cost effective way to go. The server would be located in the Municipal Building. We are looking at networking 36 workstations. Some of the capabilities that this approach will give the City include the ability to do electronic time recording. Right now we use the standard time card where a person comes in, punches the time card. At the end of the week the time cards are collected, the data transferred from the time card to worksheets. The worksheets are transferred up here, reviewed, the data is hand transferred again into the payroll system so there is a lot of handling of paper and entering of data. There is a lot of room for error and unnecessary duplication of work. We've been looking at and would anticipate adding, once we get a network in place, an electronic time recording system which will allow the direct recording of an employee's time by the pass card. The employee will take his/her ID card, run it through a reader when he/she goes to lunch, comes back from lunch, etc. At a basic level that information will be collected through the time recorder into a PC into the payroll system directly. It will be audited on a screen as it goes along but we won't have to do all the paperwork. In addition, it will give us the capability of more accurately recording distribution of man-hour services. Let's take the mechanic. We will have a reader in the mechanics' area. The two mechanics will, as they work on a police vehicle, pass the card through there and punch in a particular code. That time will be recorded against the Police Department until they swipe their card again and punch in another number. We do that now. We do those numbers now but we do them manually. The mechanics record that time manually. It's consolidated manually by a clerk in the Public Works Department and it's then entered into a data system, etc. We can save a lot more time with that.
Another thing we envision the network system allowing us to do is electronic purchasing. You are all familiar with our purchasing system where we generate purchase orders through requisitions that are approved and purchase orders issued. We believe that with very limited changes in our primary software we'll be able to put that system on an electronic basis as well. A purchase request will be forwarded by the department director to the administrative office via the computer. We'll review it. If we agree with it we'll forward it on and then a hard copy will be created instead of the process we use now. And there will be more documentation of the process. Another advantage to this system will be an internal e-mail capability that we currently lack. I think you are all familiar in your businesses as to how that can be of assistance to an organization. I probably put out 2, 3, or 4 memos a day to various groups of people and I do that hard copy. Other people in the City do the same thing. I think you can visualize how an e-mail system will allow us to cut down on that type of paper generation.
Another thing I find intriguing that I happened to see at Mr. Shuler's office by accident is a central calendar for scheduling meetings. Each participant you are tracking has his/her calendar located in the server. They can blank out as much time as they want to as they need time. Say I want to have a meeting with the Police Chief, the Public Works Director and the Recreation Director. I just have to do a query for a given period of time and it will tell me all the dates on their calendars when they have open time at the same time. I can then pick out a time for a meeting and schedule that into their calendars and automatically get the meeting set up. I'm sure you've all played phone tag trying to set up a meeting and trying to find out when who's available.
Right now we have a computer that goes to a printer. We have a lot of printers. We believe we can reduce the number of printers we have over time and we can share the more sophisticated color printers, high speed printers, etc. off the network as opposed to having a printer with each PC. Over time, through attrition, I think you will see a reduction in the number of printers we purchase and maintain in the organization.
There are a couple of other neat things that I hadn't even thought about when we started down this path. One is a fax server. We'll be able to sit at our desks, at our PCs, do a document, and send it to the server and have the server fax it to a given destination. There will be a fax system that will be part of the server. Now we have to queue up to send a fax. Maybe you are 2 or 3 deep to get your fax out. You see them sitting along the counter until it's your turn to put the fax on. We'd be able to keep that system for incoming faxes and be able to use the PC network to do outgoing faxes which seems like a time saver to me.
Finally, the system we are proposing will have a CD ROM tower which could draw a parallel to a juke box. It's going to have CD ROM's for various things in the City training on software. You will be able to call up this system and request a particular CD. It will load that CD and you can access the information that is on that CD ROM. This seems to be a very cost effective addition to the system as well. Believe me, we are not going to the outer extremes of what a system can look like. We have worked very diligently at trying to keep both cost effective, and at the same, advanced enough that we can take advantage of the investment and still have room to grow the system as we need. As I said, we have 36 workstations we're putting on. I think we're doing like 68 drops because while you have the people in here doing wire, we're doing drops to other parts of the building where we may need to do something in the future. We could even get that cost down now. The drops are 50% more than the actual number of workstations but keep in mind that some of those are going to go to printers, etc. We will have some undedicated capacity in the system where we can just plug a peripheral onto the network.
You don't need to write these numbers down because I will give you a report on this topic in the next two weeks. I wanted to bring it up this evening because my schedule is going to take me out of town for the next two Council meetings and Mr. Parham will have to bring you legislation related to this. I wanted to start discussion on this topic so that if you have a desire to get with me in the next two weeks you'll have that opportunity. Looking at the system in increments we believe we can build the backbone of the system, the fiber optics; and acquire the necessary hardwire lease line system, hubs and other paraphernalia they hang on these things for $48,000. The server and related equipment and software will be $42,181. The consulting fee and installation that will go along with that is $9,000. We have surveyed every PC in the organization and we know how many RAM of memory it has and how big the hard drive is and what kind of chip it is running so we've assessed all of that and our consultant has worked with us and determined what machines need to be replaced and what machines can be upgraded. The factor we used is if we were going to spend more than $800 to upgrade a machine we felt it was not worth it because technology turns over so fast. You can buy a new machine for $1,000. We expect that cost to come in at $37,059.
Finally, we will be using off the shelf software for application. We are currently running Windows 95 in many of our workstations but again, since they are not networked we have some stations at Windows 3.1 and some not on Windows at all. We have been running Microsoft Office as our common software and we are going to upgrade all workstations to Windows 95 and all workstations will be at Microsoft Office 97 which is the latest version of that. We will get a license for each station for that software. That cost, between upgrades and acquiring new issues of the software, is estimated to be $11,562.
Right now we estimate we will be able to do this system for $148,000. I should add that some of these numbers are still being refined. We are still shopping some of these items. A number of these cost centers in this system we will be able to acquire through the cooperative purchasing program for the State of Ohio. For operating costs, we will have a lease line charge for the two remote buildings of $3,720 a year. This is a very quick overview. I do intend to give you a written report on this topic within a week. I would like to restate that I will be out of town for the next two Council meetings but assuming we do finalize our numbers with the vendors, we would like to bring legislation before you for the state purchase elements of this as early as July 16 but possibly August 6. I just wanted to let you all know that it's coming. If you need to pursue this with me, please try to get me before I get out of town; otherwise it's all going to fall on Mr. Parham. I hope when we do get this in place you all will agree that we've brought the City's capabilities up a notch or two with it.
Ms. Manis said I think it's long overdo. Do we currently have or use any laptops?
Mr. Osborn replied we do but they are in very specific applications. We use them for people who have to be remote from the City while they're working like the Public Works Inspector. There are other applications like that. The Police Department may have one that they were using related to traffic signals but I don't even know if that is still in use. We have a few around but they are not the general issue type of equipment we have here.
Ms. Manis said you could hook your laptops up and I think it would be important to pursue that also.
Mr. Osborn said there obviously will be a modem associated with this system. As an example, I'll be able to work from home over my PC and access the system here at the City through our server.
Ms. Manis said we have the technology. We might as well use it.
Mr. Knox said I fully support Mr. Osborn's thrust on this. As someone with 37 years experience working in offices, most of the people on Council and many of the people in the television audience realize that this is something that is needed, is very efficient and will serve the City very well.
Mayor Webster said I would also like to commend Mr. Osborn and the committee that put this together. You can only work so hard, then you get to the point that you can't work any harder, you have to work smarter. I really think the City government has a remarkable record of providing police, fire, maintenance, etc. with the absolutely best tools available to do their jobs. I think this falls in the same line. We're bringing the City up to state of the art. Sure the system has limitations and I'm sure we're going to be back from time to time to ask for upgrades but I think what they are in the process of building is a system that will be limited only by their imaginations. I think it's terribly important that we look ahead and be able to accommodate more than just the half a dozen functions Mr. Osborn listed there. I wholeheartedly support this and hope that Council could support it also.
Mr. Vanover asked will the officers in the field be able to do the electronic time keeping?
Mr. Osborn replied no, certain individuals are not on time clocks. Police officers are one of those. We have not determined what we are going to do in terms of that issue. I really don't see a problem with the way we are doing it now. The time saving in that particular department will be in the hard copy paper that is processed internally within the department and shuffled around among two or three desks up here.
Mr. Danbury asked if the network is going to be a mainframe?
Mr. Osborn replied it will be a server that will be a stand alone PC. We'll have four hard drives, one of which will be a backup drive. The other three hard drives will be sequenced where each contains 1/3 of the other hard drive. If one hard drive goes down we will only lose 1/3 of the total volume of information in the system. It can be restored from the other two hard drives. That fourth hard drive will kick in automatically and the hard drive that's been lost will be automatically replicated on the spare hard drive. One of my concerns was what if the computer went down. Fortunately we had some very smart people working with us and they educated us. There are much bigger operations than us that have these types of systems and there is a lot of fail-safe brought into the design and this is one of them. I thought it was ingenious that no single hard drive is an entity into itself and there is a fourth hard drive so that if one of the three should go down the remaining two restore what was on the third one.
Mr. Danbury said more industries are coming out with driveless. It's just a dumb terminal.
Mr. Osborn stated we are going to stand alone PCs that will be networked into the server. There are different levels of users out there, different requirements for capacity in machines and this would allow each workstation to stand alone if our system did go down. We will have a backup system in the server but the individual user will also be able to back up on his/her own system. Should our server go down all we've done is drop down to where we are now with the exception of our time keeping and obviously we'd have to go back to the paper process for a while.
Mr. Knox said I want to inform Council that the document you got from the Auditor of State contains a lot of answers to a lot of questions you may have had and is given to you for your information.
Ms. Manis said I wanted to bring something up for Planning Commission to take back. When I was on Planning I know we strove very hard to make sure that all the dumpsters in the buildings being built were screened and we have this City beautification program going on. Down at the Rec Center we have this dumpster in the middle of the parking lot that looks horrendous. I think they should look at screening that dumpster also.
Mr. Osborn said it is a good point and we'll look at it. I neglected to mention that we had a bid opening for the pool slide. We're bringing the recommendation to you that we reject all bids. The only complete bid we received was $350,000. Our engineer's estimate was $289,000. We received no plumbing bids at all. I guess at this point I would like to defer to Mr. Shuler because he has a game plan on how we might respond to this.
Mr. Shuler said as Mr. Osborn indicated we are recommending that we reject all these bids. Unfortunately the prime contractor we were looking for on this contract is a contractor who has worked with us before. We felt we would get the best bid from him since he knew our system and knew our facility. He informed us the morning of the bid opening that his bond had been delayed and asked if we could postpone the bid opening. Unfortunately we cannot do that once a bid opening is set so he was not able to bid because his bond did not get here on time. The work market is very busy right now and we got no plumbing bids. We got one stand alone electric bid. We do not feel the bids we got were representative of the market so we do feel we can substantially bring the cost down more in line with the project estimate. If we rebid we are looking at a schedule with Mr. Burton and we certainly do not believe this is going to jeopardize having all this work done before the pools open next spring. However, it may mean we don't finish it all in October/November which was our original plan. We'll be bringing a recommendation on a new schedule back to you.
MEETINGS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
Board of Zoning Appeals July 15, 7:00 p.m.
Planning Commission July 8, 7:00 p.m.
Special meeting -report on future land use
alternative for McClellans Lane residents July 7, 7:00 p.m.
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
UPDATE ON LEGISLATION STILL IN DEVELOPMENT
Accomplished items 1 and 2 tonight
Item 3 - Northwest Business Center - vote next meeting
Item 4 - postponed, need resolution rejecting bid
Item 5 - first reading, preliminary plan for the Crossings, public hearing August 6
REQUEST FOR LEGISLATION - none
Council adjourned at 8:20 p.m.
Edward F. Knox
Clerk of Council/Finance Director
Randy Danbury, President of Council