VILLAGE OF GRANVILLE COUNCIL MEETING MINUTES April 18, 2001
CALL TO ORDER (by Mayor Robertson at 7:33pm)
ROLL CALL (7:33pm) Those responding to the roll call were Councilmembers Bellman, Crais, Lucier, and Moore; Vice Mayor Wernet, Mayor Robertson; Manager Hickman, Law Director Crites. Councilmember Moore moved to excuse Councilmember McGowan; second by Vice Mayor Wernet. Motion carried. [Councilmember McGowan arrived at 7:36pm.]
Mayor Robertson amended the Agenda to add an Executive Session after “Other,” for purposes of considering land acquisition.
CITIZENS’ COMMENTS (opened by Mayor Robertson at 7:34pm) All Topics None Joint Economic Development Study Councilmember Crais announced that Ms. Wimberger was unable to attend this meeting and would be at the May 2nd session. Mayor Robertson closed Citizens’ Comments at 7:35pm.
PUBLIC HEARING (7:35pm) Ordinance No. 08-01, An Ordinance To Create A Sugar Loaf Preservation Fund. No one appeared to speak for or against the Ordinance.
NEW BUSINESS (7:36pm) Resolution No. 01-30, A Resolution To Award The Bid For Towing And Storage Of Motor Vehicles For The Police Department, As Per Specifications, To Yonkers Towing And Auto Care, Inc. And To Authorize The Village Manager To Enter Into An Agreement Therefore, was introduced by Vice Mayor Wernet. Second by Councilmember Lucier. [Manager Hickman clarified that a tow would now cost $25, in contrast to the previous charge of $35. Yonkers Towing will do storage as well, with the ability to release an impound 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.] Motion carried.
Resolution No. 01-31, A Resolution To Award The Bid For The Purchase Of A 4-Wheel- Drive Dump Truck, As Per Specifications, To Bowman Chevrolet And To Authorize The Village Manager To Enter Into An Agreement Therefore, was introduced by Vice Mayor Wernet. Second by Councilmember Moore. [Manager Hickman clarified that this is a replacement vehicle, that 4-wheel drive is needed, and that a new truck will provide better value in the long run and also has a new-vehicle warranty. He expects the truck to last six years, during which time the replacement fund for the next truck will be built. The old truck will be sold as salvage.] Motion carried.
Resolution No. 01-32, A Resolution To Appoint Members To The Granville Tree & Landscape Commission, was introduced by Vice Mayor Wernet. Second by Councilmember Moore.
Discussion: Councilmember Lucier asked if these openings had been advertised. Manager Hickman said they had not. Councilmember Lucier stated she had some concerns about appointing someone who does not live in the Village, then asked if the Tree & Landscape Commission was a formal commission, per the Code. Manager Hickman responded that he and Mr. Dorman are working to clarify the commission’s status. Councilmember Bellman agreed about the advertising any committee/commission positions that open up, especially new ones. Councilmember Lucier moved to table the resolution; second by Vice Mayor Wernet. Motion-to-table carried. [Manager Hickman asked that a decision be made by the second meeting in May.]
Resolution No. 01-33, A Resolution To Authorize The Village Manager To Seek Bids For Cedar Street Sidewalk Extension, was introduced by Vice Mayor Wernet. Second by Councilmember Bellman.
Discussion: Manager Hickman explained that the original budget appropriation took the sidewalk the entire length of Cedar Street, plus the piece along North Pearl Street from Cedar Street to Cedar Lane. The current request for funds would allow the sidewalk to be extended along North Pearl from Cedar Lane to the Schnaidt residence. There is already $20,000 set aside for this, and any monies left over from 2000 would be added as well. Councilmember Lucier asked if it were a higher priority to replace an existing sidewalk than to add a new one. Manager Hickman said it was in this case, since this is a dangerous section. Councilmember Lucier noted that Burg Street is at least as dangerous, especially where the sidewalk “just quits” about halfway up the hill. Manager Hickman clarified that the plan is to reposition the Pearl Street sidewalk 18-24” back from the road, with a finished width of five feet. Councilmember Bellman felt the added safety was certainly worth the money. Responding to a question from Mayor Robertson about the current position of the crosswalks in that area, Manager Hickman said there is now one at the Schnaidt’s driveway, just south of the Denison entrance, and a second further north (though that one will not be restriped). Councilmember Lucier pointed out that, with the crosswalk on the south side of the Denison entrance, pedestrians had to cross both North Pearl Street and the Denison road. She suggested the crosswalk be repositioned on the north side of the Denison entrance.
Vice Mayor Wernet agreed with Councilmember Lucier’s concerns about Burg Street. Manager Hickman noted that Denison students had put out a questionnaire on this subject and he would try to get a copy of the responses. He added that, while there is “technically” a 40-foot right-of- way, the street jogs back and forth from side to side, and there are houses and trees close to the road on both sides, sometimes opposite each other. The road might have to be straightened to install sidewalks and Manager Hickman suggested it would be “reasonable” to do some engineering over the next couple of years to explore the issue. Vice Mayor Wernet added that the Streets & Sidewalks Commission could discuss it as well, with a “reasonably high” priority.
Councilmember McGowan asked if the North Pearl sidewalk would be curbed. Manager Hickman responded that it would, with a white “fog line” and 6-8” of pavement between the traffic lane and the sidewalk. He also agreed with Councilmember Lucier’s suggestion to move the crosswalk north of the Denison entrance. When asked if Council needed to vote on the resolution at this meeting, Manager Hickman responded that the job needs to go to bid so he can line up the contractor. If Council were to decide against the appropriation at a later time, the process could be stopped or a change-order written.
Councilmember Bellman asked if there would be a crosswalk at Cedar Street. Councilmember Crais felt the Village could “do better than just striping.” Vice Mayor Wernet suggested the matter be sent to Streets & Sidewalks with a request for them to bring back a recommendation. Mayor Robertson suggested that everyone go look at the area before next meeting. Councilmember Crais spoke in favor of the resolution, noting that approving it meant being able to address a dangerous section of sidewalk. He pointed out that this is not a “zero-sum” situation (i.e., we don’t have to choose between North Pearl and Burg Streets). He also suggested that we do more than just paint the crosswalks, perhaps talking to Denison about splitting the cost for a brick crosswalk. Councilmember Moore asked if this work was budgeted as part of the Cedar Street project. Manager Hickman said it was separate, but budgeted. Motion carried.
Ordinance No. 09-01, An Ordinance To Amend Ordinance No. 25- 00 Providing For Adjustments Of The Annual Budget For The Fiscal Year 2001 And Revising Sums For Operating Expenses, was introduced by Vice Mayor Wernet. Second by Councilmember Bellman. Mayor Robertson set the public hearing for May 2, 2001.
OLD BUSINESS (8:02pm) Ordinance No. 08-01, An Ordinance To Create A Sugar Loaf Preservation Fund, was re-introduced by Vice Mayor Wernet. Second by Councilmember Moore.
Discussion: Vice Mayor Wernet, concerned that we make sure not to violate any conditions created by the initial dedication of the land to create this park (e.g., a reversion of interest), asked that Law Director Crites review the issue. Law Director Crites said he has already begun a review and found some small issues re the dissolution of the non-profit corporation (e.g., the articles of incorporation must be amended). Councilmember Moore asked how the Preservation Fund would be funded (i.e., if monies would be transferred thereto from other village funds). Manager Hickman responded that money from the General Fund would be moved into the “G5” Fund (created especially for this purpose—and designated as “G5” pursuant to state regulations). Mayor Robertson asked if a committee similar to the one that oversees Fanchion Lewis Park would be created. Manager Hickman said it would, with no legislation required. Mayor Robertson asked that we advertise for interested citizens.
A Roll-Call Vote yielded seven (7) affirmative votes: Councilmembers Bellman, Crais, Lucier, McGowan, and Moore; Vice Mayor Wernet, Mayor Robertson. Ordinance No. 08-01 is adopted.
MAYOR'S REPORT (8:08pm) The Mayor's Court Report for the month of March was presented for review. Mayor Robertson commented on the unusually large number of parking tickets; there was no available explanation at the moment. Vice Mayor Wernet moved that the report be filed; second by Councilmember McGowan. Motion carried. Mayor Robertson directed the report be filed with the Clerk. A copy of said report is attached as part of these minutes.
Ancillary Discussion: Councilmember Crais raised the concerns of neighbors in the area bounded by Pearl, College, Granger, and Summit Streets, about large numbers of dogs running free. Manager Hickman said Councilmember Crais should tell the neighbors to contact the GPD, who will either handle the problem or advise the resident to call the DogCatcher. Councilmember McGowan suggested we also do periodic reminders to dog owners to pick up after their pets.
Councilmember Crais raised the issue of student residents in this same area. Students have been seen urinating on peoples’ lawns, and a beer bottle was thrown through a glass window on Summit Street. The students’ conduct is not acceptable and it is widely felt that the student houses on Granger and Pearl Streets are “out of control.” Councilmember Crais noted that the Pearl Street house had only been cited one time and asked Council to instruct the Manager to apply the ordinance allowing us to deal with the lessor. Councilmember Moore asked if Denison knew of these houses; Mayor Robertson responded that they do know. While there are virtually no legal off-campus residences, the college cannot prevent students who pay room and board on campus from using houses rented in town. Councilmember Moore suggested that the Village get in touch with Denison. Manager Hickman said he and Councilmember Crais would work on the issue. Councilmember Crais reiterated his desire to have the Village move on enforcing the lessor ordinance. There was general agreement on Council that the student houses have a truly detrimental effect on the neighborhoods where they are.
Councilmember Crais asked when the truck scales would be inspected and certified ready for use. He also mentioned that water is pooling on the concrete and wondered if that would affect the life of the surface. Manager Hickman said the water pooling was not a structural concern but it does look bad. He also noted that our officers have had a training session with the State Patrol on the scale and it has been used six or so times already. A couple of citations have been issued. Councilmember McGowan asked about landscaping around the scale; Manager Hickman said they are working on it.
Councilmember Lucier asked it if were possible for GPD to track school-related calls, complaints, etc. Vice Mayor Wernet asked the same about race-related traffic stops. Manager Hickman responded that Chief Cartnal does an annual report that he will supply to Council and then include the Chief’s monthly reports in Council packets from now on. Councilmember Moore asked that the race data be reported for everything, not just traffic stops.
MANAGER'S REPORT (8:23pm) The Manager's Report for the month of March was presented for review. Councilmember Moore posed the question everyone is asking: Where’s the drinking fountain? Manager Hickman said it had been taken out for repairs and painting (by Abe’s Body Shop), then re-installed on a new stone base. The fountain will bubble gently all the time—the only way the dog bowl can be filled. Mayor Robertson asked Manager Hickman to formally express Council’s thanks to Abe’s. Councilmember Lucier asked about the status of the Alexandria water contract. Manager Hickman apologized for the delay and said he will move immediately to finalize it. Councilmember Bellman complimented Manager Hickman on the Main Street crosswalk. Manager Hickman clarified for Mayor Robertson that the lights come on only when the button is pushed; there is no motion sensor to activate the lights when a vehicle is approaching. He added that the intent in this arrangement is that the action/reaction of pressing the button and then getting the light is to foster awareness. Councilmember McGowan stressed that we need to stress educating the citizens that traffic won’t stop automatically, and encourage them to make sure they, and their children, look both ways before crossing the street. Manager Hickman noted that “Stop” signs are installed on the bike path on both sides of the street, and warning signs have been ordered for Main Street traffic. Vice Mayor Wernet moved to accept the report; second by Councilmember Crais. Mayor Robertson directed the report be filed with the Clerk. A copy of said report is attached as part of these minutes.
REVIEW AND APPROVAL OF MINUTES (8:32pm) Regularly Scheduled Meeting of April 4, 2001. The following additions/corrections were requested: Councilmember Moore, p.4 – Renumber “Minutes” to correct the two “7s.” Councilmember McGowan moved to accept the Minutes as amended; second by Vice Mayor Wernet. Motion carried. COMMITTEE REPORTS (8:35pm) Development Committee (Councilmember Crais). Councilmember Crais reported on the Committee’s “very productive” meeting of two weeks ago with Hazel Morrow Jones and Kathryn Wimberger of OSU. Eloise DeZwarte also attended the meeting. In the near future, Ms. Wimberger will submit a proposal to Council, while Ms. Jones will submit one to the Township Trustees. The plan is for Ms. Wimberger to submit an interim report by the end of May— detailing the economic challenges facing the Village and proposing some ideas about how Council might ensure the economic viability of the community. Ms. Wimberger is scheduled to attend the May 2nd Council meeting. Mayor Robertson proposed that, quarter by quarter, perhaps different groups of grad students could take the Village on as a project, leading to an ongoing relationship with OSU. Councilmember Crais reported that, in response to a request from Ms. Wimberger to be reimbursed for mileage, he had encouraged her to speak with Village staff. Councilmember Moore announced that the Committee will meet on Thursday, April 26th, at 7:30am at the Village Coffee Company to discuss issues re Cherry Valley Road south of S.R. 16. A number of property owners from that area will attend. Finance Committee (Councilmember Moore). Councilmember Moore talked with Molly Roberts about the big decline in the Village’s assessed valuation as reported by the County Auditor—an issue every bit as confusing as the Census Report. Ms. Roberts reported that the decline is in the personal property tax valuations. The County Auditor says that in 1999 they mistakenly included Owens-Corning in the Village rather than the Township. The error was discovered in mid-2000 and its correction caused the big decline. Manager Hickman reported that the Village had already made a refund to the County. Councilmember Lucier commented on the fact that, contrary to the usual pattern, income tax revenues for the first quarter had decreased rather than increased. Manager Hickman said it might simply be a function of when Denison makes its quarterly payment. Councilmember Lucier asked that Manager Hickman keep an eye on it and, if necessary, ask the Tax Commissioner to explain. Newark-Granville Joint Committee (Mayor Robertson) Councilmember Bellman reported difficulty in reaching Craig Baldwin. No further report.
Personnel Committee (Councilmember McGowan). Councilmember McGowan reported that he will set a meeting with Manager Hickman and Molly Roberts.
Planning Commission (Councilmember Lucier). Councilmember Lucier was unable to attend the last meeting. No report.
Rec Commission (Councilmember McGowan). Councilmember McGowan reported that the Commission has not met since his last report. There was some discussion among members of Council about where the bingo tent will go for the July 4th fair, with Council leaning against locating it in Opera House Park, preferring to investigate closing off another street. Manager Hickman reported that the parade application had just arrived earlier that day and he would keep Council posted as details fell into place.
Street Light Committee (Councilmember McGowan). Manager Hickman reported that 19 new lights had been installed along Newark-Granville and Jones Roads. Councilmember McGowan expressed his appreciation. Streets, Sidewalks & Utilities Committee (Vice Mayor Wernet). Vice Mayor Wernet reported that the Committee had not met since his last report but intended to meet the following week.
Tree & Landscape Committee (Councilmember Moore). No report.
Union Cemetery Board (Councilmember Lucier). No report. Manager Hickman noted that Councilmember Lucier’s position on this Board would expire as of the second Council meeting in May. Councilmember Lucier added that she enjoys the job but was certainly willing to cede her place to anyone else who might be interested. [Silence greeted her announcement.]
OTHER (8:47pm) Councilmember Crais noted that he hadn’t seen any published notice announcing the formation of a strategic land acquisition committee. Manager Hickman said he hadn’t placed the ad yet. Councilmember Crais reported that we have already received two names (Lori Green and Sara Neel) and urged Manager Hickman to post the notice ASAP.
Councilmember Bellman referred to the letter from Tom Burkett re the surface of the bike/pedestrian path next to Denison’s property on North Street and asked if that was Denison’s responsibility or the Village’s. Manager Hickman reported that he had asked that the section be measured and priced, after which he would approach Denison about splitting the cost of the repairs (approximately $8,000). He added that the Village had done the original installation, including improvements to the splashway and construction of the wooden footbridge. Councilmember Bellman said he felt use of the Licking County Transit shuttle service for July 4th was a great idea. Manager Hickman will pass it along to Kiwanis.
Councilmember Lucier asked if Resolution 01-27 (re Council rules) would be untabled at some future time. Councilmember Bellman suggested it be dealt with piecemeal until it has all been considered. Manager Hickman will schedule accordingly. MEETING ANNOUNCEMENTS May 2, 2001 – Village Council Meeting
EXEUTIVE SESSION (8:54pm) Vice Mayor Wernet moved to go into executive session for the discussion of acquisition of land; second by Councilmember Bellman. A Roll Call vote yielded seven (7) affirmative votes: Councilmembers Bellman, Crais, Lucier, McGowan, and Moore; Vice Mayor Wernet, Mayor Robertson.