Council was called to order on May 7, 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, Wilson and Danbury.
The minutes of April 16, 1997 were approved with 7 affirmative votes.
COMMUNICATIONS - none
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
PRESENTATION FROM TIME WARNER - Jennifer Mooney
Ms. Mooney, Vice-President of Public Affairs for the cable company for 9 years introduced other employees of Time Warner; Mr. Mark Donnert, Vice-President of Operations; technicians: Randy Jenke, Dan Pendegrass, Dave McGeorge, Andy Cresix and Dan Lyons. If you have any concerns about any service you recently received or the cable system we have people here who are very equipped to answer these questions or speak to them.
We have served your community for eighteen years. We renewed our franchise with you in August 1994 and in the new agreement we said we would upgrade the cable system. We finished that in February 1997 and it happened in advance of what we had promised. Since then our service level has dropped to 4%. That means in this community 4% of your residents are receiving service calls once a month. Before the upgrade service calls were at 8% and in communities that have been upgraded for a while it drops to 1-2%. You haven't been upgraded that long and we think by the end of summer it will probably be near the bottom. We deployed the general instrument 2200 media deck which is probably what you have in your home if you are a customer. It is currently capable of delivering 80 channels. The picture is much better than in the past and it has a lot of features. Some people use all of them; some use none. It has volume control, electronic program guides, sleep timers, parental control, etc. Our most recent offer to the market place was the family value tier. Disney was $6.95 a month. We moved it into a package of services right now and for $1.99 you can receive Disney, golf, TV food and Turner Class Movies. It has been the most popular offering we've ever had on the market. For people who get Disney they perceive this to be an extremely good deal. I know schools are very important in this community and we continue to spend most of our resources for the community in the schools and to date we are spending about $150,000 a year on cash and in-kind contributions to the schools. The Princeton School District has been very active in distance learning projects and in the cable in the classroom pursuit. We spend a lot of time working with that school district in particular.
As for getting into the phone business we do a have business called Time Warner Access. They are currently licensed to offer point to point services and they carry data traffic for many businesses around the Cincinnati area - Federated, P&G. They are not carrying all the traffic. We still share some of that with Cincinnati Bell and we assume that's how it will be in the future. Will we get into the residential telephony business? At this point the corporate office is still considering how we want to pursue that business. Most likely we will end up in the residential market but most likely it depends on how the regulatory arena in the state continues to shake out. The regulatory arena for residential telephony has been extremely difficult in Ohio. Some of you may have heard about Roadrunner. Those of you who are on-line users would probably like it here as much as I would. It's not long waiting like AOL or some of the other services. It comes over cable lines which deliver full motion video at a much faster speed. We have it in several markets right now. The one closest to here is Akron/Canton/Youngstown. We are looking at an early 1998 date to launch it here. You don't have to be a cable customer to subscribe to it and we will give it free to schools. The reviews we have had on it have been great. Anyone who switched over has stuck with the product. It's extremely hi-tech and dynamic.
Mr. Galster asked if the Roadrunner program will be a cable hookup to the internet? Will that have a basic monthly service fee like AOL, Prodigy?
Ms. Mooney replied we are testing it in several markets right now and we're testing pricing right now too. In Akron/Canton/Youngstown they are charging $39.95 a month.
Mr. Donnert said the pricing is through the cable plan. If you have AOL now on your phone system, you either have to have a separate line or if your phone rings it knocks you off. A second phone line is not necessary for our product.
Mr. Galster said I have three boxes in my house. I get the guide on my main TV in the living room but none of the other sets have the same information. It says no data available.
Mr. Lyons said you pay for the service navigator in your house. If at any time there is a problem with any service you give us a call and we will process that problem. We have a small software problem with the navigator. As we upgrade the plan and turn off the old plan that can affect some of the boxes. There are a couple of very easy steps you can do to straighten that problem. The best thing to do is to call in and we can walk you through it.
Mr. Vanover said I've gotten a couple of calls from people who are still blaming Springdale for pulling Odyssey and the new set up. I'm hoping you have some information that that has been taken care of.
Ms. Mooney replied I brought the script our front line representatives use and we do work with those individuals that they have proper information. We tell them that ICRC has the ability through its contract with us to preempt certain stations to put public access programming on. In your community several of those are being preempted. We do not blame the community for this. We do mention that ICRC is programming those channels. We have had Pat Havlick review the script on two occasions and make edits so Pat is comfortable with what we are telling customers. As recently as yesterday Pat told us she is comfortable with what we are telling customers. We have 52 communities, each with a different channel lineup right now depending upon what their public access needs are. We are working with Pat continually to figure out for her and for you which channels would be the best for her preempt.
Mr. Vanover said as far as what channels are pulled, i.e., Odyssey, that's your decision. That's not us or ICRC.
Ms. Mooney replied we offered seven channels with the lowest viewership and said, ICRC, you can pick, and the channels were picked. We didn't offer the whole cable system for good reason. We know what services people watch. We want to keep the most popular programming out there for the customers. We know which services would cause more chaos if we removed them. We also have a limited number of channels we can preempt. We have to carry the broadcast channels, PBS, etc., then you get to the core cable products and there is not a heck of a lot left.
Mr. Vanover said my concern is that we have no control. We have no decision making in what goes on the air. Yes there is a contract with ICRC on the cable access ability. It bothers me that this is still out there. I've talked with Pat and she said she has seen the script. I feel comfortable with that but somewhere along the line someone is deviating from the script and that concerns me.
Ms. Mooney said based on your franchise agreement and based on law, you are permitted to claim up to 10% of our channel lineup if you want it. We do have something about which channels you can claim and it's in both of our best interests to offer the channels we think are going to be the least disruptive to the most customers.
Mr. Vanover continued you have gone down to two tiers now instead of three. I had a gentleman call me and said he was told that there are two tiers.
Ms. Mooney responded we are offering a much different selection to customers. We're really offering more choices. We have basic and then you can add the family value tier. You can have basic plus standard. You can have basic plus premiums. It's not an apples to apples comparison with the old order you were used to. We offer five different packages. If you choose not to purchase the package you can buy things ala carte, but as you know, when you start buying things ala carte from any retailer, you will pay more money. We have many more choices now than we had on the old cable system.
Mr. Knox asked if you need none of the features that are on the control box and you have a cable ready television set, do you need the control box?
Ms. Mooney replied no but you can get 56 channels on a cable ready set. You can't get the features, the premium services, pay for view.
Mr. Knox said if you don't want the features you don't need the control box which is not generally known by the people.
Ms. Mooney replied it's in all of our marketing literature.
Mr. Knox responded I tried to find it and eventually did. The family value feature is $1.99. I don't have a control box. Would it cost me $1.99 to add it?
Ms. Mooney replied you need a box to get the family value tier. The box costs $3.00 a month.
Mr. Knox continued we have received four letters from very reputable people about what was said by your representatives. Two of the people I know personally and I trust implicitly. Your people said the City of Springdale took those channels off as late as April 10, two weeks after your folks promised that would never happen again. Why is this happening?
Ms. Mooney replied we have 150 people who work for us and answer phones. I have a lot of confidence in those people but we're not a police state and can't control absolutely everything everybody in the organization says.
Mr. Knox stated when the person came out to install my cable I was told that our franchise fee was high because the City of Springdale was trying to make all the money it could off it. I'm getting tired of this and so are a lot of people who are calling me about this. I really wish that although you are not a police state, at least you have people work for you who should listen to direction. Please get them to listen to direction.
Mrs. Boice said I do enjoy the new hookup and the picture is clearer. I'm out of town a great deal and don't use my television that much. I looked at my bill and it went up considerably. All I thought I was getting was the music station so I called Warner Cable and explained to them that I'm not really interested in the channel guide. I said I would like to drop the music, the channel guide and a few other things that would cut the bill $4 or $5. I was advised that that is a package and if you do that your bill will go up $10. I said I don't think that is possible. From calling a lot of airlines I know you can call back and get different answers so I hung up and a couple of days later I called back. I got the same song and dance but a little bit different this time. I said as far as I am concerned I think that is highway robbery. I don't want the stuff, don't use the stuff, take it off and you want me to pay $10 more. This person said that is a decision of the City of Springdale. I said buddy, you are talking to the wrong person. Then he said it was ICRC. This is going on. I understand the package deal but I have to say when I got the music station I didn't expect all this other going on. I don't know if you need to have a seminar and bring all your people in or what, but to put it very bluntly, as elected officials we take enough blame for enough things that maybe we didn't do that the people like but I'll be doggone if I'm going to sit up here and take the blame for Warner Cable's statements. It's embarrassing to us and I would think it would be embarrassing to Warner.
Ms. Mooney replied rest assured we'll take every step possible to make sure that the information is properly communicated to our front line personnel.
Mr. Osborn said I just want to say that I had a role in the initial installation of the cable system a number of years back. It was a real nightmare and a lot of problems. I was anticipating a similar experience when we did the conversion but to the credit of your company that wasn't the case. I felt it went very smoothly. Your people coordinated well with us. Ironically I was one of the few people where they really messed up. They trenched in my yard outside of an easement and we had to talk about that. Overall, the conversion this time around went very well. Another area where I think you have shown significant improvement based on the number of complaints we get and personal experience is in the area of service response. I think on the few occasions I have had to have someone come out and correct something, folks have been very helpful and timely in their response so again I want to reinforce that. I think you have heard some areas where we still have some concerns but on the other side of the equation I think the company has made some major improvements over what we experienced a number of years ago when we first made the installation of the system.
Ms. Mooney responded a lot of the people responsible are sitting here today. I'm glad they have the opportunity to hear this.
Ms. Manis said I have basically the same thing to say. When we got our new system installed the guy was very nice and went through everything. It's our choice to have it and if you don't want it you don't have to have it. It's not a requirement. I have had no problems. I have had "no data" show up. I call in and every time they tell me what to do to correct it. I've called at all hours and somebody has been there to answer the phone. I haven't had to wait. It's been real nice for us. We have the Disney package and our bill is actually smaller than it was before. It seems it's very hostile up here but people I've talked to don't have a problem either and if they do, I say it's your choice not to have it. I do think a lot of the problems are through working with ICRC. When there is a go-between between us and you it does tend to slow things down and things get messed up occasionally. Saying it's Springdale's fault on these channels, we do have to take some of the blame because we could be up there telling ICRC we want a certain channel back. I think some of the blame has to go on us too. I appreciate the system.
Mayor Webster said at least once a week my channels change. I am watching television and all of a sudden I'm watching another channel. Is that a systematic problem or something in my set?
Mr. Lyons said if you have a problem the first thing you need to do is call us. There are three things that can cause your channel lineup to change. At any given time we have three different channel lineups in your area; the old, the interim and the final. As we go through the system changing everybody out, that impacts the whole system when we turn off different channels. We try to schedule it at a time when everything is okay but there are boxes that do get affected. If you are watching channel 4 and it switches to channel 6, one phone call in, one keystroke on the computer will straighten it out. If the numbers change on the box itself, that's another real quick fix as far as calling in and letting us know. This is a very sophisticated system we are putting in and the things it will do are three to four times more than what it can do now. Again, if you experience any problem, we are open 24 hours a day, call in and 99% of the people who answer know what to do or who to talk to to find out.
Mayor Webster stated I have gotten very few phone calls from residents. I have run into some people who have told me the same thing you heard from Mr. Knox and Mrs. Boice. The people are very courteous and responsive but they have been told about it being Springdale's fault and I totally disagree with Ms. Manis. I take absolutely no responsibility for using up those channels and I don't know that we could demand to have one of those restored.
Ms. Mooney replied you could. Just so you know, you as a community have the right to make a different choice than the other ICRC communities make. You do have that choice. You could call us tomorrow and say you'd rather restore the Odyssey channel and we'd take care of it for you.
Mayor Webster said we didn't make any choice going in, did we?
Ms. Mooney responded you made a choice as a member of ICRC to go along with what choice they would make for you. That was the choice you made. I am telling you tonight that you do continue to have the option to make a different choice for your community. I'm not making any recommendations. It's up to you. You can handle it however you like.
Mrs. McNear asked do you have a feel for the percentage of households in Springdale who subscribe to cable?
Ms. Mooney replied it is close to 60%.
Mrs. McNear said I have never had any complaints from residents about the cable service. The most hassle I get is from my children because we don't have it. Now I can tell them 40% of the people in Springdale do not have cable.
Mr. Knox said if we select a channel to be placed on the menu can we also select the one that is removed? Could we select to have the Odyssey channel put back on and the shopping channel removed?
Ms. Mooney said we have the right to keep certain channels on the cable system. I can't tell you tonight what we'd be willing to take off to put your public access programming on. That's something for another meeting and another discussion. I know which channels we have offered. The shopping channels are very popular services. We track viewership and people watch those channels.
Ms. Manis asked if you have viewership from our community or just across the board?
Ms. Mooney replied when we were on the Qube system we knew everything all the time. Because of the configuration of the system we don't know everything all the time. Our data was better then because of the kind of system it was. I can tell you it gets pretty dangerous as a community to get into the business of deciding. I think your best bet if you want to continue down the public access road is to stick to the channels you have. It's in all of our best interests to keep the popular channels on the system.
Mr. Danbury said I am walking a thin line here because I am employed by both people but I want to make a comment. If Warner Cable can submit to the City the current channels that are offered for preemption and the City were to decide to preempt something, what would they put on it?
Ms. Manis said I would just be interested in seeing the ten that are up for preemption.
Ms. Mooney said they are Miami Extension University, Trinity Broadcast Network, EWTV, EWTN, Preview Guide, More Music and Odyssey.
Mr. Vanover said when you flip onto the previous channel that was the preview guide the footnote still shows preview. Why is that?
Mr. Jenke said you are seeing the navigator. It is the data source we purchased to bring onto our system. It preempts every channel that is on there. Every time we do a download some of the boxes don't get that in. That's why you see "no data available". It's programmed on every channel we have. As a supervisor I take full responsibility for what my techs say out in the field. I will take this back to them and we will say the right things. We don't want to put the blame on anybody but ourselves. We have morning meetings every morning to discuss things. You better believe this next week I will see every technician and make sure they get the message.
Mr. Knox said it wasn't a tech but a salesman.
Mr. Jenke said either way, in a couple of months we will have salesman out in an area and they will get the same training when it comes to dealing with the customers. I do most of the hiring for our district and from day one we preach customer service. We want to be competitive in a market that deals with the customer and I look at my job as based on how I serve the public. I want my people to take pride in what they say and how they treat people more so than how much they sell you or what type of services they have.
Ms. Mooney said if you need us to come out again at any point Mr. Osborn knows where to find us and we will be happy to come back out.
ORDINANCE NO. 37-1997 "ACCEPTING DEDICATION OF RIGHT-OF-WAY AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY (STERLING HOUSE PROJECT)
Mr. Vanover made a motion to adopt and Mrs. McNear seconded.
Ordinance 37-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 38-1997 "ACCEPTING A BID AND AUTHORIZING THE MAYOR AND CLERK OF COUNCIL/FINANCE DIRECTOR TO ENTER INTO A CONTRACT WITH RAY PRUS & SONS FOR THE 1997 DRIVEWAY APRON REPLACEMENT PROGRAM AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY"
Ms. Manis made a motion to adopt and Mr. Wilson seconded.
Mr. Vanover said I contacted Ray Prus because my driveway is in need of repair. I was disheartened when I talked to the lady there and she informed me that they hadn't assigned a supervisor yet to head up the calls and I was also notified by several residents that they had contacted them and it would take about three weeks to get somebody out there to get a bid. With our timetable if the contractor gets the bid we have some leeway in getting the work done, but if it's taking them three weeks just to get out and get a bid, we're putting people in a precarious situation and that alarms me. That cuts their flexibility down. I don't know what we can do about it right now but I think we ought to address that with the contractor and start a fire some place.
Mr. Osborn replied we'll follow up with Ray Prus on that. I had one resident who called with a similar problem and in that specific case I did have Mr. Sears contact Mr. Prus and get someone out there right away. This was right after the bid opening and I did understand there was a three week time frame and I was able to expedite that one call but I think we need a better overall response from the contractor and by now we should have been in place to do that.
Mr. Knox stated that the permits for this are being handled by Mr. Sears and Public Works and not by the Building Department which normally occurs. The press reported incorrectly that it is the Building Department but it is Public Works.
Ms. Manis said I don't understand. What are you talking about.
Mr. Osborn replied if someone, in addition to having their driveway apron replaced, wants to have some other work done on their own such as replacing their driveway and/or patio, they may want to get a quote from Prus. The gentleman who called did not want to wait three or four weeks to secure a bid for his own work so I tried to expedite it so Prus would get out to him and give him a proposal for his private work. That's nothing involving the City.
Ordinance 38-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
ORDINANCE NO. 39-1997 "AUTHORIZING CDS ASSOCIATES, INC. TO PROVIDE THE INSPECTION SERVICES NECESSARY FOR CONSTRUCTION PROJECTS IN THE CITY OF SPRINGDALE AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY"
Mr. Vanover made a motion to adopt and Mr. Galster seconded.
Mr. Osborn said in a memo to Council dated April 28 we recommend you favorably consider this request. We just don't believe that with the five projects we have going simultaneously this summer that we are equipped internally to provide the appropriate level of inspection. We would like to engage an inspector through CDS. The individual we would be using is someone who has worked on our projects before and is well known to us. We would feel that we have a real responsibility to protect the long term investment we are making and the best way to do that is active and close inspection. As a result we would like to bring in a contract inspector for the summer.
Ms. Manis said we don't usually do this on general types of projects. Usually when the proposal comes through inspection is included as part of that. This is because we don't usually have CDS doing this.
Mr. Osborn replied the engineering service is covered under an existing agreement. This is for someone to be out in the field making sure the forms are put in at the right location, the concrete is the right depth. Usually we do this in-house.
Mr. Shuler stated most years we have done it in-house. This year we had all these projects going simultaneously and Mr. Sears and Mr. Butsch did not feel they could adequately cover all of them at the same time so we are going to put somebody at Mr. Butsch's disposal to direct where he needs help.
Ordinance 39-1997 passed with 7 affirmative votes.
Mr. Danbury said Mr. Shuler, I spoke with a resident earlier, Mr. Horace Dimond, who was very dissatisfied with the signal light on Kemper Road by Best Buy and by Sam's. He said he's had some problems where the light goes on and then changes real quickly. I said I would pass that along.
Mr. Shuler said we can check into the timing at any time. With the amount of traffic we have in that area we've been watching that area and truthfully that situation is not going to get to a satisfactory level until we get the Century Boulevard extension in and the signal for Commons Drive that goes back to Roberds is removed. Then we'll have a greater separation and that will help that situation immensely. But we'll definitely check into the timing.
Mrs. Boice said looking at the first proposal for Charter, the first paragraph needs to be changed. The Charter Revision Committee has not recommended this. That should read "Whereas the Council has recommended a revision in the Charter for submission to the voters of the City of Springdale". Other than that I have no further problem with the content. Mr. Schneider, when Mr. Galster, Ms. Manis and I met with you after the other meeting the suggestion had been made by Mr. Galster that we would put that under Council Rules. Is that what this ordinance would do?
Mr. Schneider replied the ordinance establishes Council Rules under Section 30.13 which is the next section of the Administrative Code. This is a proposed Charter amendment as I understood it. I did rework the wording a little bit but I hope I accomplished what the four of us talked about and I tried to make it as clean and neat as I could.
Mrs. Boice said I know it doesn't say anything about submission and it does say clearly to establish its duties and rules, so that takes care of the dual function.
Mr. Danbury said let's take these one item at a time. Let's go back to the first one dealing with the Council recommended revision to the Charter. This deals with the situation that at no time any elected officials being on this board. Is everybody happy with the language in this. I don't necessarily want comments on whether you agree with it or not but is everybody at least happy with this as it would be presented to Council. Are you recommending we bring this before Council at our next meeting?
Mrs. Boice replied yes. No emergency. We have plenty of time for two full readings and that's what I would like done.
Mr. Galster said if we get a recommendation from Charter Revision and/or a Council member for a change to the Charter, the Charter Amendment Review Panel would allow an independent, non-partisan, randomly selected panel to be seated to eliminate any perception of political bias or motivation. It's like a random sampling. The only thing I didn't like about the wording is "if any one member of Council should request the President of Council shall appoint five electors from the City". I would like to make it a more random selection as opposed to the President of Council selecting five people. I don't know how to best make sure that random selection happens but I think that's an important aspect of it. Originally we were looking at the Hamilton County Board of Election providing us with a list of registered voters and then having someone randomly call that list in a random order to come up with the five people. I think that is more appropriate than just having the President of Council pick five people.
Mr. Schneider said someone has to be in charge to get the job done. I said it was to be randomly selected but by the mere fact that you have a list from Board of Election we could rule that every tenth name is to be called until five people agree if you want. Someone has to be in charge of picking one. We can pick whatever words you want to do that. The official way is someone should select it. If you want a majority of Council to select you could do it that way. You could have the President of Council which is the way I did he. It's possible he could pick five buddies or he could go down the list and do it.
Ms. Manis asked what about the Law Director?
Mr. Schneider said again, it would be someone else doing it. I certainly could do that. I know it did say that and I would be glad to do it but it seems to me it would be more in the control of the Council rather than the Law Director.
Mr. Galster said I rather it be outside.
Mr. Danbury said as I read this and I was talking with Mr. Galster Monday night, I would anticipate that if we would go to a lottery system that would have to happen before each and everything that happens that we're going to consider. Like the situation we had last year, if it doesn't pass we can't bring it back on the ballot for a long time. If it doesn't pass and we get a jury system who says this should go back to the voters, we can't bring it back to the floor. For every single thing we would have to get a jury in here.
Mr. Galster said I don't think so. The housekeeping items such as those in the last election were not issues anyone objected to. They came from the Administration with a recommendation from Charter Revision and I don't think anybody had a question as to whether or not they were legitimate requests for changes to the Charter. I think the last time this would have been invoked was probably back when the Clerk of Council position was discussed two years ago. That could have possibly helped in clearing that dark day up a little bit. I think this is an attempt to make sure that if those type issues come up in the future, that there is a way to handle it as fairly and non-partisan and unbiased as possible.
Mr. Danbury said if you can at least state for the record that this is not binding.
Mr. Galster replied that is correct. It's a sample recommending board and has no more weight than Charter Revision does.
Mrs. Boice said the likelihood of our drawing together a panel may happen once in ten years. This would not be for every Charter amendment that comes in. It may never be used. If it's in place it could be used.
Mrs. McNear said I think we are trying to make this panel a lot more work than it needs to be. Mr. Galster, you were out on the streets a couple of years ago campaigning and if you worked from the list of the Hamilton County Board of Elections, you know that those records are not very current. I think it is very difficult to go that way. Perhaps we need to work from the list of people who have called here saying they would like to volunteer to be on a board. Maybe if we advertise that way and have a pool, you randomly select people and see if they are available to help us when we need a board. I think it could be very difficult and time consuming to contact even as many as five people to get onto the board.
Mr. Galster said I think we can have a Board of Elections list to select five people. We may have to make twenty phone calls to get five people and we may have to update as we go but I think that's part of the process. I think the idea of this committee is to make sure we don't have all the people who want to be involved in the politics part of it. While I understand trying to make it simpler I think it is as simple as it can get. I think if we go to the people who have signed up for boards I don't think we're getting a true sampling of the general electorate.
Mrs. McNear responded but you are getting the ones who are interested in participating.
Mr. Galster stated that is corrected but I don't know that that is unbiased, un-everything.
Mr. Wilson said I've listened to Mr. Galster's comments and Mrs. McNear's comments and both of them have some weight. People who necessarily sign up for the boards may not be interested in this board. They may not be voters. We want to make certain that those people who make these kinds of decisions are voters. I agree with Mr. Galster that we should go from the Board of Elections numbers. It doesn't take long. I'm on the phone all the time. I can make twenty phone calls in an hour. All you want to do is tell the person we are putting this together, the reason for it and ask if they are interested. I don't think we'd have a problem getting five people to serve on this. Once it gets out that we're doing this people will be calling us to serve. Hopefully, as Mrs. Boice said, it will be once every ten years.
Mr. Danbury said there are different types of people and I think you are going to get the Type A people, personalities who get involved. I think if you go to a sampling type you will get more of a mixture of the population.
Mayor Webster said I wish all of us would stop and think why we are doing this and what you are building here. If you stand back and look at the process, a recommendation comes out of Charter Revision or like this year, from the Administration, a member of Council and the Law Director. They are forwarded to Council. Council reviews and discusses the recommendation and then one person says I want the panel to vote. Then you turn it over to the solicitor and have him use some randomly selected method to pull this board together. Once they are selected they have forty days from that date to convene and start this process. Then you have to wait for the next Council meeting to review their findings and at that point you are ready for an ordinance. If you want to do the Charter changes the way I personally think it should be done, you don't do them with an emergency clause. You have two readings and wait for the thirty days for them to go into effect so you've just tacked another sixty days onto this process. Then all of this has to be down to the Board of Elections 75 days before the election. You burn up six months time trying to get something on the ballot because one person raised his/her hand and said I want this panel invoked. This whole process is all because there was one issue that Charter Revision recommended and I made the allegation that I thought it was politically motivated and evidently, five members of Council did not disagree because the ordinance did not pass and did not get on the ballot. It hasn't come back again because the recommendation said that that job should report to the Mayor and since I am now the Mayor I have not heard that recommendation come forth again so I think it substantiates my allegation of two years ago. All of that, one issue, and we are going to create this monstrous process that will take a good six months from the time that Commission recommends something until we get it on the ballot. It's bogging down the system with needless steps, I think.
Mr. Galster responded this is not making it a six month process. This is adding 30 to 40 days to the already long process. It's a long process to begin with. This is not creating a monster. It may be adding 30 to 40 days but it is not responsible for the full cycle of the time frame it takes to run its course. Secondly, I have a fundamental belief that 99.999% of everything that comes out of Charter Revision with a recommendation that it go to the voters should go to the voters. I think if anybody questions whether it is politically motivated and therefore wants to deny its access to the ballot, is wrong. If it is politically motivated let's find out. Let's have the five people seated. If those five people come back and say no, we don't think it is. We believe it's an issue that should go to ballot, then I think it should go to the ballot. If the electorate up here still decides not to allow it to the ballot then I think that is something you have to answer at election time. I don't think there are any drawbacks to this. I think it allows you to address the potential downfalls. These five people are put on by a majority of Council for five year terms. They are there for a long time. If there is a common belief that develops between four or five Council people, then there's a lot of influence that can be exercised on that board for a long period of time. This is a fallback in case a situation like that happens again. It would have been great to have had it in place two years ago. We could have addressed whether it was politically motivated and if we found out it wasn't it could have gone on the ballot and we could have found out once and for all. I don't think it's creating anything that's a major problem to overcome.
Mr. Danbury said I personally agree with the Mayor that it is creating a big process. I've stated that to you before due to the fact that it has no teeth. You said this will at least hold whoever votes against it in the future accountable. It has to go to each and every one of us to think about what we are doing. If we vote no on a recommendation in the future and I don't want to talk about the past, but in the future, we only had three people voting against putting this on a ballot. It wasn't four or five. We had to have five people vote in favor of it. In the future if something comes out and you vote against it you are denying the entire community of deciding its own fate. There's no way we can make everybody happy. We don't know what everybody thinks. We should give them that right. I think this is creating a huge, huge thing that has no teeth. If Council wants to do it I'll support it.
Mayor Webster said Mr. Danbury and Mr. Galster, what I hear both of you say is that you disagree with the super majority that is necessary to put an issue on the ballot. If that's what you are objecting to, then there should be a Charter amendment doing away with the super majority and say this should go on as a result of Charter's recommendation or it should go on with a simple majority. But the people who drafted the Charter said they thought that was one issue that needed a super majority of Council before it went on the ballot.
Mr. Danbury said I didn't say anything about that.
Mayor Webster said you said anything that comes up here should go on the ballot.
Mr. Danbury replied if it's from Charter Revision. Why do we have them there?
Mayor Webster said why don't you address the issue? Why don't you bring in an ordinance putting a Charter amendment on the ballot that does away with the necessity of having a super majority of Council supporting it?
Mr. Danbury said because on the issue we are talking about we had three people vote against it. Next time we could have four people vote against it. We may have five people vote against it. If any recommendation comes from Charter Revision I will always support it. That's why we have them.
Mayor Webster said then do away with Council's involvement in it.
Mr. Danbury responded no, all Council does, is it passes through Council and they will pass it on to the electorate. If we say yes to any Charter amendment nothing changes. The structure of the government is still the same today as it was yesterday and the only difference is the citizens can decide on election day how they want their city to be run.
Mayor Webster replied you are not consistent in what you are saying and what you are proposing.
Mr. Danbury stated I'm very consistent. I know exactly what I am saying. I'm saying super majority has nothing to do with it. It could be unanimous. The Charter could say it has to be unanimous and if one person votes against it, it wouldn't pass. Right now it's a super majority which is five or more people. If we say a majority of four votes, no matter what it is, I think each Council person has to answer to his/her own way of looking at things. I'm sure everybody doesn't agree with me. That's fine, I respect that. But I feel anything that comes out of that committee should be put to the people.
Mr. Knox said in order to give maximum exposure to the electorate I would suggest on the amendment that the ballot be on a general election where the most people vote. As it stands right now this would devolve whenever the next election was and as you well know, some elections have very few people and some have a whole lot more.
Mr. Galster said that would still be up to Council as to which ballot it goes on. If Charter Revision gives us a recommendation to put it on the ballot Council then decides if it should be a special election or go on the next general election. I don't think that changes at all.
Mrs. Boice said what's sauce for the goose ought to be sauce for the gander. If we as Council members should automatically put on the ballot any recommendation that comes out of Charter and some of you feel very strongly about that, then I would think any recommendation or question that is put to Charter Revision such as this we have in front of us today, then I think they should also present that. If we're duty bound to take all of their requests, then they must be duty bound to take our requests without fail and that was not the case.
Mr. Danbury said let's take this issue out. If I say something needs to be done and they find it has no validity, that it really shouldn't, then they don't have to recommend it and bring and back.
Mrs. Boice said maybe I think what they bring forth has no validity and that's why I vote against it. It's got to be both ways.
Mr. Danbury said everyone has different viewpoints. I'm not saying yours is wrong or mine is wrong but I feel that is what we empower them to be there for; to look at the Charter, to study the Charter.
Mrs. Boice said I think we had a unique circumstance because there have been things that have come before that have not been put on the ballot and nobody had a fit over it.
Mr. Wilson said when Mrs. Boice came to Charter Revision she made a suggestion and brought it before the body. She called for the vote and it was voted down. It was a dead issue and did not pass. In order for something to go before the body it has to be voted positively by the majority. That's why it didn't go before Council. Secondly, the whole purpose of this issue is to eliminate any evidence of undue political influence on Charter by an elected official serving on that. That's why I assume Mr. Galster wanted to have this committee together, not just for Charter, but for any committee that an elected official served on or had any alleged political influence over. That's why I was in favor of it because I have seen the things that have gone on. Everyone here knows things are politically motivated whether we want to admit it or not. This committee will hopefully eliminate that. Maybe we'll only have to do it one time and all of us will realize that we have to deal as a city and think as a city and work together and not be politically biased as has happened.
Ms. Manis said I think this needs a lot of discussion. I think we could all agree that the Charter Review Board is a different kind of committee or at least it should be. By the nature of the beast, it is appointed by Council so there will always be people on there who have personal ties to other people. That's just the way it is and I think we all have to admit that whether we want to or not. Anything that comes out of Charter has been that way. When all of a sudden you have a super majority of Council who has put these people on Charter - or have not - that is when you get into trouble. Maybe there have not been any major issues before Charter that caused there to be this problem in the past and hopefully there won't be in the future. But I think Mr. Galster's proposal does eliminate that, because whether it is there or not, you want to eliminate the appearance of it. Maybe it's not there but everyone perceived it to be. Just like Mrs. Boice going to Charter. Those are not her fans and we'll all admit that. Maybe you don't want to admit that but that's the truth. We need to be honest about this. The Charter is too important not to be. Yes, Mr. Wilson, that is the way Charter is supposed to work. Something is presented to them. They decide if something should go on whether you're on it or not. I still don't care about whether it's a Council person or not. It's supposed to work that way. If it didn't, then there's something wrong. If Mrs. Boice had a legitimate concern about it and it's something that should be discussed at Council then it should be brought to Council. Mrs. Boice can bring it up herself and she did, but she was going through the right channels. These biases are there. They are going to be and we'd like to have them eliminated and I think something like this at least helps eliminate the appearance of it. It can still come up here and even if the panel recommends it, we can still vote against it. As far as the big time problem, I think it probably is two months but Charter changes are important and we shouldn't try to hurry them through. If it has to wait, it has to wait. I think we should take our time and look at these things because they are important to the City. Council has to deal with it and with the repercussions of it. I think it's up to us to decide.
Mr. Galster said if Mrs. Boice or any Council person is bringing something before Charter, I think it's Charter's obligation to properly investigate it. If the standard mode of operation is that you have to get three or four people to decide your issue is worthy of their investigation, I think that is wrong. I think that should be changed. If a Council person has an issue he/she wants Charter to look at, that should happen. I'm not saying it needs to come back supported. It can come back without the recommendation but it surely should be investigated.
Mr. Danbury said one issue here is that Mrs. Boice through our Charter, by-passed Charter Revision.
Mrs. Boice said I took it to Charter and was never even given a reply. I just felt very strongly and I'm sure because Mr. Wilson still had quite a number of years I thought I had made myself very clear that it would not interrupt anyone who was on Charter at the time. At first I think Mr. Wilson may have taken it personally but now I think he realizes that was not the case. When nothing came forth on it I felt I had no further choice than to bring it directly to Council. Of course, any Council person has the right to request any ordinance to be brought in. I got no reply on that at all.
Mr. Danbury said that was my point. Besides going through the Charter we can initiate something ourselves.
Mr. Wilson said Mrs. Boice was present when the vote was made. Mrs. Boice replied no and Mr. Wilson said we voted while you were there. A record of the minutes were, in fact, made available for anyone to read and it's public knowledge.
Mrs. Boice responded I shall certainly review them. Perhaps I had a lapse of memory but I don't recall any vote being taken when I was there. If you will recall, I also suggested that you may even want to look at Board of Zoning and Planning Commission. I don't recall a vote.
Mr. Danbury asked is Mr. Galster's proposal something Council is comfortable bringing forth as legislation?
Mr. Schneider said my understanding is the only change is in the second sentence, "If any one member of Council so requests the Law Director shall randomly select five electors of the City to serve."
Mr. Wilson asked if the panel is going to go first.
Mr. Danbury said we have already discussed Mrs. Boice's recommendation about no elected officials.
Mr. Schneider asked if the Charter Amendment Review Panel is going to be created first so this particular Charter amendment could possibly be referred to that panel, or are we going to consider first this amendment and the panel takes into effect future issues.
Mr. Wilson stated we should do the panel first. It's quite obvious that the second one is a political situation and that may be the first order of business.
Mr. Danbury said let's do no emergency and two readings and it takes effect thirty days afterwards. I don't want to confuse everything and I think this is very healthy. I want us to act on this individually on the merit of these. If we have two readings of these effective thirty days afterwards I don't want to confuse this and that. I don't want the panel to have to look at the recommendation of this issue. I think they both stand on their own merit and they shouldn't have to intertwine.
Mayor Webster said Mr. Wilson just made the point that if you pass this one first and then your rules, then you don't put this Charter change on the ballot this year. It goes next year sometime.
Mr. Wilson said if the decision of Council is to have this on the November ballot then it is incumbent upon the panel we select to give us a decision within a set period of time so that we have ample time.
Mayor Webster responded forty days.
Mr. Wilson replied we might want to change that to less than forty days.
Ms. Manis said I don't think it matters right now. I think we put it on and see what happens.
Mr. Danbury said it doesn't matter what order. I want two readings for both of them.
Mr. Schneider said somebody needs to make the decision as to what order they come on. Otherwise it falls to me to decide and I'm going to give it to Clerk to decide or the City Administrator.
Mr. Danbury responded I'll decide. It's my agenda. I want two readings for both of them. If they are voted affirmatively they'll take effect thirty days afterwards. If they both pass we can't go back and review that. I'll follow Mr. Wilson's recommendation. The review panel will be first and the second one will be the Charter Revision request from Mrs. Boice.
Mr. Osborn said I just want to remind the public that we are still accepting the return of yard waste stickers. Effective May 1 our residents no longer need to attach yard waste stickers when they set out yard waste; in fact yard waste can be put out with the regular trash collection. We will be receiving a refund from Rumpke for all unused stickers. I might say we have gotten a very nice response so far from the public in terms of returning unused stickers and if there are anymore out there, please bring them back to the City building and we'll recover some money for the City.
Mayor Webster said the City has been awarded a "Tree City USA" award for the fifth consecutive year. Ceremonies were conducted at Bruckner Park in Troy on April 18. Mr. Sears and Mr. Butsch attended the ceremony representing the City. Also we got a congratulatory letter from the Vegetation Management Department of Cinergy. We also got a letter from the governor congratulating us for attaining "Tree City USA" designation for 1997. It really is prestigious to be awarded this especially five years in a row. We're very proud of our tree planting activities and hopefully will continue with that effort.
Mr. Knox said I would like to publicly thank Mrs. McNear for standing in for me when I was out of town on business at the last meeting.
Mrs. McNear said I just want to remind everyone that in your mail you got a blue letter for the event coming up Sunday, May 18 at 9:00. It's an event sponsored by the Springdale Police Department and Tri County Mall. It's a 5K run/walk and I'd like to challenge everyone up here to be there with me.
Mayor Webster said I was going to read the proclamation I've issued in regards to Police Appreciation Week next week and also announce the run/walk. Twenty-three agencies are going to be displaying various law enforcement vehicles inside the mall and that will be May 17 and 18. If anyone is interested in following along with Mrs. McNear on Sunday you can register with Tri County or the Springdale Police Department. I will be on the sideline cheering you folks on.
CITY OF SPRINGDALE, OHIO
Office of the MAYOR
WHEREAS, in conjunction with the observance of National Law Enforcement Week, May 11 - 17, 1997, the Springdale Police Department will host the sixth annual Law Enforcement Expo at Tri-County Mall on May 17 and 18; and
WHEREAS, this event is in honor of the men and women who now serve, and those who have died in the line of duty to protect and serve; and
WHEREAS, nationwide in 1995 alone, 74 Police Officers were slain and 53 died in accidents in the line of duty; and
WHEREAS, this administration joins in this special tribute to acknowledge all officers Who have given the supreme sacrifice - their lives - in defense of all citizens; and to those officers who bravely and consistently serve the public each and every day.
NOW THEREFORE, I, DOYLE H. WEBSTER, Mayor of the City of Springdale, do hereby proclaim the week of May 11 through May 17, 1997 as
NATIONAL LAW ENFORCEMENT WEEK
in the City of Springdale and urge all citizens to observe this day in all ways appropriate to its significance.
Mayor Webster said once again I have sad news to report, the passing of Fay Howard. She was one of the founding members of the Springdale Garden Club. She was a reporter for the "Community Press" and "Tri-County News" and its predecessor the "Millcreek Valley News" and several other publications over the years. The community will sadly miss Fay and all of her contributions. In honor of Fay Howard I am going to change the annual Mayor's award that is given for the most beautiful lawn in the City to the Fay Howard Memorial Award and that will be given annually to the person who does the greatest job with his/her lawn. I can't think of a more fitting tribute than that.
Last Saturday, May 3 was a very special night for all the juniors and seniors at Princeton High School as it was their annual prom. It was a red letter day for nine students who are enrolled in the "Daily Living Lab". These are kids with special needs. As a result of the efforts of their four teachers, Ms. Waiter, Ms. Duncan, Ms. Snow and Mr. Boling along with the parents of some of the children, the Naylor, Howard, Macke and Laage families got together and made sure the nine kids in this special needs class got to partake of the prom and have special memories like all the other kids. Thanks to their efforts that happened. They had one snafu: there was no transportation for these kids. A neighbor of the Howard family, Mrs. Jennifer Olivier, took matters into her own hands and started contacting limousine services and car dealerships throughout the area. She would not take no for an answer. Thanks to her efforts she finally located Keith McClusky who lives in the district in Evendale and has a Chevrolet dealership in Reading which the City has patronized many times in the purchase of cruisers. He personally came out to witness these nine children who met at the Howard house in Springdale, donated two convertibles and one luxury sedan, brought three people with him as drivers and I understand these were management level personnel, and he made sure they were properly chauffeured to and from the prom. It makes you feel good on the inside to know that we do have businesses that care and citizens who care. I can't say enough for Mrs. Jennifer Olivier for taking the bull by the horns and making this happen. I'd also like to commend Channel 5 for covering this event and I understand Barbara Cain herself was out here. I don't want to put any pressure on Kelly but I'm sure the Tri-County Press will have some news on that. Maybe they have and I just haven't seen it.
The judging for the landscaping awards will take place June 21 through July 6.
Mr. Osborn said back in February when we were covering the potential capital improvement projects for 1997, one of those we raised for a concept review was a proposal that we install gas mains on all those streets in Springdale that do not currently have gas service. At that time we were just beginning to get into the issue and we needed to have further contact with CG&E to determine how they would work with us on this approach. CG&E has agreed that we will be able to treat all the streets that we put under one contract collectively so that if we get thirty taps on Street A and only two on Street B we'll be able to count thirty-two taps towards the total cost of the work. That really helps us in recovering the construction deposit that is required for a project like this. We also determined in working with CG&E that if we are going to have this accomplished for the 1997 heating season we need to begin immediately on approaching the residents to determine their interest and then engage CG&E in a contract. In my memo to Council this week reviewing upcoming matters I mentioned that we would like to do a survey immediately and if Council agrees this evening we're prepared to hand deliver a survey document to every resident on the streets involved asking them to turn that around for us so we can have a response to you at the next Council meeting. The real threshold date we have to be aware of is if we are going to have this program instituted in 1997 we have to be in a position to adopt an ordinance on June 4 agreeing to authorize CG&E to begin the work. Right now we'd like to get Council's concurrence that we should proceed with the survey. I have to say that there are probably a number of outcomes here. One is we decide to do all the streets at one time under one contract. Two, we decide not to do any of the streets, or three, somewhere in-between there if we find there is a lot of interest on a couple of streets but not so much interest on other streets. I really can't tell you how it's supposed to come out but let's suppose that it comes out there is a lot of interest on all of the streets. Then we do have the option of breaking this down into a two year program. So at that point again, we'll have to come back to you with a recommendation as to how we break those up into year one and year two. I think the outcome at this point is going to be hard to predict but I can tell you we have to start right now if we want to seriously consider this as a proposed project for 1997. If Council would like to discuss this we'd be glad to try to answer any questions you might have.
Council said to go ahead with the survey.
Mr. Vanover said I noticed earlier this week heading north on Rt. 4 that the island between the entrance ramp from northbound Rt. 4 onto eastbound I-275 and the overpass was three-quarters under water. I never noticed it before. Has something changed down there or was it just the heavy rain that we got?
Mr. Shuler said it may have been a situation where brush had blocked a catch basin, culvert. It's probably just a maintenance issue and we'll note it with ODOT and have someone come out and look at it.
Mr. Vanover said I also noticed a camera crew at the interchange of the exit from westbound I-275 and Rt. 4. They had a snorkel camera and I was just wondering what was happening with that.
Mr. Osborn said we have requested ODOT to put a video truck out there to document traffic movement on Rt. 4 south of the intersection at Crescentville as well as the expressway ramps. They are shooting a split screen so that we can watch two factors at the same time; the backup on the expressway ramp and the queuing up of the traffic from Crescentville just to see what those cycles are doing. We are concerned with the volume of traffic we have to put through that intersection. That is the highest volume intersection in the City now and it's also the highest accident location in the City and it's not going to get any better. We're trying to work with Fairfield in both the area of signalization coordination and perhaps in encouraging some additional infrastructure improvement north of the intersection, but in order to get a better handle on how that intersection is working and how it's working in conjunction with the interstate we asked ODOT to bring that truck out. We are also considering putting a second video camera permanently on that corridor just as we have at the intersection of St. Rt. 747 and Kemper. We could use it to view both the interstate ramps and the Crescentville intersection. To get immediate documentation on what is going on, ODOT agreed to send that truck out. Mr. Sali is using that information to help analyze how we might improve that Crescentville intersection.
Mr. Wilson said at my last district meeting a gentleman brought up the subject of street signage. He was concerned about tractor trailers driving up and down Ray Norrish and I know you will see a tractor trailer every now and then on Glensprings. His suggestion was to have a large sign saying the street name to let the truckers know that this is not a through street or that it is a residential neighborhood, something to indicate that unless you have business on this street , no tractor trailers. Do we need to have a study? I wanted to poll Council and see if anyone else has heard of or seen these tractor trailers coming up Glensprings or Ray Norrish and can we do something to prevent this?
Mr. Osborn said there are two issues here. First, we are in the process of replacing the typical corner sign you see at most intersections now with much larger signs that will be directly attached to the mast arm so there will be no mistaking what street you are intersecting. I'm not certain that will have any impact on these tractor trailers. In fact, we have pretty aggressive signage at Glensprings right now prohibiting tractor trailers into those streets unless they have a specific delivery. There's a five ton load limit and it's clearly marked. They know that and they disregard it. We cite them. They do a lot of damage and more than just coming up Glensprings Drive. They come up there to turn around or go to Perkins or somewhere like that. They do a considerable amount of damage when they go to into a private parking lot to turn around. We are constantly trying to catch those vehicles. I know there was one this past week that cut through the BP station, tracked through their landscaping and headed south on Rt. 4. BP called the Police Department and the police pursued the truck down Rt. 4. It's a constant problem trying to deal with these. I'm not certain that any additional signage will make a difference because I think that those who are using the street are not doing it by accident. They either cut through illegally or they use it as a turn around or a place to park. I think they are doing that with the knowledge that their trucks exceed the load limit for that street.
Mr. Wilson said they must have some kind of instructions to tell them how to get from Point A to Point B and the resident's point is if there is a big enough sign for the trucker to see and realize that that is not the street to turn on, perhaps he would not turn on it.
Mr. Osborn said I'm sure we will have that sign up in the near future but again, I think most of those truck drivers are pulling in, turning around and parking and either staying over night at Howard Johnson's or going to Perkins. They are not even making a delivery in the area. If you look at the office complex across from Howard Johnson's they have boulders as big as the podium adjacent to their driveway aprons to prevent trucks from turning in and then pulling out across the green space because the aprons aren't built to accommodate trucks and they cut the corner and tear up the landscaping. That has been an ongoing problem for some time and I have to say I am a little skeptical. I don't think the drivers are doing it without knowledge that they are violating the law.
Mayor Webster said Mr. Wilson, if you are right and the resident is right, we'll take care of the problem with the big, enlarged signs. Like Mr. Osborn said it's going to be impossible for you to turn onto a street and not know what street you're turning onto.
Mr. Wilson said fire plugs on Ray Norrish have been damaged as a result of trucks. The signs will give them less of an excuse to turn onto the streets.
Mr. Danbury said they have speed limit signs and they don't obey those; and they do this for a living.
Mr. Vanover said we have a problem similar to that on St. Rt. 747 and Crescentville Road where we have signs up that say "Do Not Block the Intersection" and they continue through and create gridlock when the1
train visits us, even without the train when traffic is at a peak. Unfortunately, you can't always enforce common sense. A vigilante might think differently and I can understand their feelings about that but I've seen those trucks and they have no reason not to be able to see that the traffic is backed up.
Mr. Danbury said I was contacted by a resident two weeks ago and he asked what our policy is concerning yard signs for construction for windows, siding, etc. He said with the driveway apron situation he's starting to see more signs pop up all around. He said he moved to Springdale from Glendale because he liked it but he said right now it's starting to look like Colerain Avenue. He said every other house had a sign. I contacted the Administration to find out what the policy is and Mr. McErlane looked into it. There is no provision for project signs to be allowed other than real estate signs in a residential property. Basically the City is allowing them to be there during the entire duration of the work being done. Some of these people are having signs up and their policy is that they have a year to be able to put a sign up. I know of one in particular that the work was done last September and the sign was still up last week. According to Mr. McErlane they are going to look into it. I'm not necessarily saying this is what they should do, Mayor, but we did have a complaint.
Mayor Webster responded I was not aware but I certainly have some empathy for a contractor to have his sign up while he is doing the work, but if they are leaving it up after the work is done I think that is a clear violation of our sign ordinance.
Mr. Danbury said I agree they should be able to get some advertising for their work, but they are rotating it. They'll take it down from your yard this month, then put it back up two months later.
Mr. Vanover said I've noticed a lot of remodeling jobs in our area. We're seeing a problem with signs showing up in the right of way, between the sidewalk and the street. I've seen some real estate signs down there too.
MEETINGS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
Planning Commission May 13, 7:00 p.m.
Board of Zoning Appeals May 20, 7:00 p.m.
Board of Health May 8, 7:00 p.m.
Mr. Osborn said I want to review the times for the visioning retreat. We'll begin Friday evening at 6:30 p.m. and conclude around 9:00 p.m. We'll begin again Saturday morning at 8:30 a.m. and conclude at noon. It's an exercise to try to identify key issues facing the City over the next five years and to formulate a vision as to how we're going to address those. Some of the things you may want to consider in preparation would be the survey document that was completed recently and the corridor update that was recently reported on by Mrs. McBride. I think we'll enjoy this exercise. The individual coming in to facilitate it is very good at what he does and makes it enjoyable as well as productive. I'm looking forward to it and I'm sure we'll all benefit from it.
COMMUNICATIONS FROM THE AUDIENCE - none
UPDATE ON LEGISLATION
Credit for taxes in other jurisdictions - next meeting
Mr. Knox said I plan to get some sample figures for 1996 returns. We will not have complete figures because all the tax files will not be filed until August.
Regulation of discharge of sump pumps - next meeting
Mr. Danbury said Mr. Osborn, you were discussing the gas mains. Do you want to bring that in June 4?
Mr. Osborn replied if we get the report back to you by the next meeting and make a decision, CG&E would prepare an agreement and we would have it for you on June 4 with an emergency clause.
Two items were requested for a first reading at the next meeting - the two ordinances dealing with the issue of the review panel for the Charter amendment committee and the situation with having a non-elected official on the Charter Revision Committee.
Council adjourned at 9:00 p.m.
Edward F. Knox
Clerk of Council/Finance Director
Randy Danbury, President of Council