VILLAGE OF GRANVILLE
February 4, 2009
CALL TO ORDER (by Mayor Hartfield at 7:31pm)
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
Those responding to the roll call were Councilmembers Barsky, McGowan, Mershon, Tegtmeyer, Vice Mayor Herman, Mayor Hartfield, Manager Holycross, and Acting Law Director Mathews.
Councilmember Barsky made a motion to excuse Councilmember O’Keefe. Second by Councilmember McGowan. Motion carried (6-0).
APPROVAL OF AGENDA
Councilmember McGowan moved to approve the agenda as presented. Second by Councilmember Barsky. Motion carried (6-0).
CITIZENS COMMENTS (7:32 pm)
Dennis Cauchon, 327 East Broadway, advised Council that he was speaking as Chair of Friends of the Granville Charter. He indicated that this group focuses on issues dealing with open government. He indicated that the group was concerned about Council’s pattern of not following the plain language of the charter. He specifically cited Council’s approval of the zoning ordinance. Mr. Cauchon stated that the Village Charter specifically provides for the timing of approving ordinances. Council did not follow the Charter in approving the zoning ordinance. Mr. Cauchon asked that Council reintroduce the legislation, hold another public hearing and vote on the amendment.
Jack Thornborough, 13 Donald Ross Drive, requested that Council release the confidential memo from Law Director Crites outlining Counsel’s legal opinion regarding how Council can disregard the Village Charter which directs Council on the passage of legislation. Mr. Thornborough indicated that he would like to read Council a copy of an email from Brandy Maas, Rich, Crites & Dittmer, regarding this issue. The email stated that “I hope this is not the beginning of a slippery slope leading to challenges to every provision where the term shall is used, but it does appear that the term is not mandatory in this instance.” Mr. Thornborough indicated that shall was mandatory and cited several examples of the use of “shall” throughout the Village code. He also requested that the ordinance be reintroduced.
Mayor Hartfield closed the public comments portion of the meeting. (7:40pm)
Mayor Hartfield recused herself from the meeting.
Presentation on River Road Alternative and Cost Estimates
Planner Terry presented Council with a revised best alternative for an east/west alignment of the roadway providing flexibility to alter the roadway depending on developer needs. The map provided also showed the layout of the infrastructure improvements. Planner Terry indicated that this alternative and the original alternative one provides for the best case scenarios. The presented alternative will not require an expansion of the Raccoon Creek Bridge, but will allow for a traffic signal or roundabout that might be needed at a future date. Any of the presented alternatives can be implemented in phases. Planner Terry indicated that the cost estimates allow for 73% of the infrastructure improvement cost to be provided by the property owners with 27% of the costs provided by the Village. The 27% infrastructure costs include 2% which was mandated by the State of Ohio and the rest covering the Village’s costs based on property owned by the Village.
Planner Terry indicated that staff recommends meeting with all property owners to discuss options, costs and determine each property owner’s interest in annexation. The Village would set a time frame for property owners to request annexation by August, 2009.
Vice Mayor Herman asked if the infrastructure assessments included costs for a lift station. Planner Terry indicated that it did not. A lift station would cost an additional $140,000.
Councilmember Barsky confirmed that the $876,000 of the $2.9 million cost was for sewer and water improvements. Engineer Jerry Turner indicated in the affirmative. The remaining $2.1 million was for the cost of road construction including the cost of a signal, which was $150,000. Councilmember Barsky asked who would be responsible for the $2.1 million. Planner Terry indicated that the developer could be asked to assume the cost or a TIFF could be implemented, which would be determined after annexation petitions and plans were submitted. Councilmember Barsky asked if all of the costs – infrastructure, roadway, lift station, etc – would be explained and discussed with the property owners. Planner Terry indicated that staff would meet with each property owner and provide them copies of the drawings, cost estimates and answer any of the questions. Staff would also explain the process of filing for annexation as well as the August 2009 timeline.
Councilmember Tegtmeyer asked the difference in cost between alternative one and the alternative presented tonight. Engineer Turner indicated that difference was one percent of the total cost.
Vice Mayor Herman asked if just sewer and water could be provided to the property owners as an initial phase. Planner Terry indicated in the affirmative. She added that changes to roadways in the area could occur when actual development began. However, a cohesive plan for where the roadways would be constructed needed to be included as part of the initial overall development plan for the area.
Councilmember Mershon confirmed that land acquisition costs were not included in the cost estimates provided. Planner Terry responded in the affirmative. Councilmember Mershon indicated that initially the Village would want to control the location of all roadways for the future and secure all necessary easements and rights-of-way. He also suggested that possible funding could be available through the proposed Congressional stimulus plan. Planner Terry responded that indeed the Village could quality for funding from any stimulus plan should the area be annexed into the Village.
Vice Mayor Herman thanked Engineer Turner, Mr. Doyle and Planner Terry for their presentation.
Mayor Hartfield returned to the meeting.
Resolution No. 09-10, A Resolution to Award the Contract for the 2009 Street Improvement Project, as per Specifications, and Authorize the Village Manager to Enter into an Agreement Therefor was moved for adoption by Councilmember McGowan. Second by Councilmember Barsky.
Manager Holycross indicated that the low bidder was Law General Contracting for $494,827 for the base bid for reconstruction and repaving Wexford Drive, Trinity Court and Waterford Court. Engineer Turner and Service Director Hopkins were available for questions.
Mayor Hartfield asked if a bid scope review was completed to assure all information was comparable between bids. Engineer Turner indicated in the affirmative. Mayor Hartfield asked the purpose of each of the alternate bids. Engineer Turner indicated that Alternate Bid A reduced the amount of base materials and did not include constructing curbs and gutters. Alternate Bid B provided for a reduction in cost based on traffic diversion proposals.
Councilmember Mershon asked if the bid specs provided for additional sub-surface work, as was needed during the Bryn Du Drive reconstruction, were included. Engineer Turner indicated that an additional 1000 cubic ton of sub-surface materials were included. The results from three of five test soil borings showed a poor sub-base. The contract included provisions for extensive base renovation.
Mayor Hartfield asked when the project was expected to begin. Engineer Turner indicated within the next sixty days. The Engineer and Service Director plan to hold multiple public meetings with local residents to make sure every resident will be aware of how the project will proceed and what to expect.
Vote to approve Resolution No. 09-10. Motion carried 6-0. Resolution No. 09-10 was approved.
Resolution No. 09-11, A Resolution to Authorize the Village Manager to Advertise for Bids for a Ground Maintenance Contractor was moved for adoption by Councilmember McGowan. Second by Councilmember Tegtmeyer.
Councilmember McGowan asked if trash pick-up prior to mowing would be included in the bid specifications as well as not mowing during dryer periods. Service Director Hopkins indicated that he asked the contractor to pick-up all visible garbage prior to mowing and that has not been a problem in the past. He also indicated that last year the contractor was contacted and requested not to mow during the dryer part of the summer when grass was not growing as quickly.
Councilmember McGowan asked if there were any additional mowing areas for 2009. Service Director Hopkins indicated that the mowing areas were the same as 2008. Councilmember McGowan asked who mowed the large area in front of Bryn Du. Service Director Hopkins indicated that fifty percent of Village acreage was mowed by the Service Department and fifty percent by the contractor.
Manager Holycross indicated that the contract typically costs the Village $30,000 to $35,000; however, in 2008 the Village spent only $23,000. The mowing contract was based on a per cut basis.
Vote to approve Resolution No. 09-11. Motion carried 6-0. Resolution No. 09-11 was approved.
Mayor Hartfield recused herself from the meeting.
Resolution No. 09-12, A Resolution to Appoint a Member to the Board of Zoning and Building Appeals was moved for adoption by Councilmember McGowan. Second by Councilmember Tegtmeyer.
Councilmember McGowan moved to appoint Bradley Smith to the Board of Zoning and Building Appeals. Second by Councilmember Mershon.
Mr. Smith indicated that he would be happy to answer any questions, but he did not have any additional comments.
Councilmember Tegtmeyer asked Mr. Smith why he was interested in serving on the Board. Mr. Smith expressed his concern for issues involving growth. He indicated that he believed his previous experience could help the Village maintain its current character.
Vice Mayor Herman asked Mr. Smith to reiterate his views on an applicant’s responsibility when seeking a variance. Mr. Smith explained that from many cases brought before the BZBA, the Board seemed to require the applicant to prove that no other options were available other than a variance. He believed that in some cases, the alternative solutions were more destructive than the issuance of a variance. Mr. Smith’s felt that variances should be granted after looking at the overall effect the variance would have on the community and the immediate neighbors.
Councilmember Barsky asked if this position was advertised again since the previous advertisement placed in January. Manager Holycross indicated that the position was not re-advertised, but Council could request that the position be re-advertised. Councilmember Tegtmeyer asked if there were any requirements for advertising Village positions. Manager Holycross indicated that there was not a policy and that the response requesting applicants has been poor over the past year.
Vice Mayor Herman expressed interest in advertising the position again to allow for additional individuals to apply, especially as there was not a specific policy in place.
Vice Mayor Herman called for a roll call vote to appoint Bradley Smith to the Board of Building and Zoning Appeals per Resolution 09-12: Barsky – no; McGowan – yes; Mershon – yes; Tegtmeyer – no; Herman – no. Resolution 09-12 failed 2-3.
Mayor Hartfield returned to the meeting.
Resolution No. 09-13, A Resolution to Authorize the Village Manager to Submit Potential Projects for Economic Stimulus Funding was introduced by Councilmember Barsky. Second by Councilmember Mershon.
Manager Holycross indicated that this resolution was preemptive based on the stimulus package being proposed by Congress. The Village received notice from the State in anticipation of monies that may be available for water and sewer projects specifically. The information regarding sewer projects was due to the State by February 13, 2009. This resolution listed projects that have been discussed previously, projects where preliminary engineering may already be complete, and projects that need to be completed. This resolution will not preclude staff from moving on projects that may become available, but were not specifically outlined as part of this ordinance. Engineer Turner indicated that the $876,000 outlined for the extension of the water and sewer service to the River Road area could be eligible.
Councilmember Barsky asked what type of information was being requested. Engineer Turner explained that the applications requested the name of the project, cost estimates, etc. He also indicated that several projects already have the engineering specs completed.
Councilmember Tegtmeyer indicated that the Village would be remiss in not being proactive in looking for possible alternative funding.
Vote to approve Resolution No. 09-13. Motion carried 6-0. Resolution No. 09-13 was approved.
Ordinance No. 01-09, An Ordinance to Provide a One-time $75 Credit Against Water Bills for Each Water Meter Belonging a Resident and Business Located in the Village as of June 1, 2009 was introduced by Councilmember McGowan. Second by Councilmember Barsky.
Mayor Hartfield set the public hearing for Ordinance No. 01-09 for February 18, 2009
REVIEW OF MINUTES
Regularly Scheduled Meeting of January 21, 2009
Councilmember McGowan made a motion to approve the minutes as amended. Second by Councilmember Barsky. Motion carried 6-0.
Economic, Finance, Personnel Committee (EFP) – (Hartfield, Herman, Tegtmeyer)
Mayor Hartfield indicated that the EFP Committee met on February 2nd at 7:00am. The Committee was unable to complete the annual review of a public employee as not all of the evaluations had been received. As soon as the remaining evaluations were available, the review would be completed. Councilmember Tegtmeyer advised that the Committee also heard a presentation from two representatives of the Robbins Hunter Museum as well as a representative from the Granville Area Chamber of Commerce. Mayor Hartfield indicated that the same presentation will be presented to Village Council at the February 18, 2009 meeting.
Granville Foundation – (Tegtmeyer)
Light, Safety, Sts/Sidewalks, Utility Committee (LSSU) – (Herman, McGowan, O’Keefe)
Planning Commission – (O’Keefe)
No Report. Mayor Hartfield thanked Planner Terry for providing the clarification regarding the sign approval for the former Bennett’s Goodyear Service Center.
Planning & Zoning Committee – (Barsky, Hartfield, O’Keefe)
Recreation Commission – (McGowan)
Councilmember McGowan indicated that the Rec Commission was looking for Board members. He indicated that the winter sports program was underway with spring sports upcoming. The Rec Commission was also soliciting businesses and individuals who would sponsor teams or post signage at the Raccoon Creek fields.
Tree & Landscape Commission (Barsky)
Union Cemetery (Mershon)
OTHER COUNCIL MATTERS
Mayor Hartfield indicated that Council needed to schedule time to outline their 2009 goals and objectives. Council decided to hold the discussion at the February 18th meeting.
Clerk Prasher provided a report regarding the deer management program for 2008-2009. She indicated that ninety-five deer were taken with twenty-eight deer donated. Clerk Prasher indicated that 779 acres were provided by residents with 75 acres offered that were unable to be hunted. She would be meeting with hunters involved in the program for an evaluation session. Council thanked staff for their hard work.
Councilmember Mershon asked if Sugar Loaf was still closed as there were signs posted indicating that the park was closed. Manager Holycross indicated that all work had been completed and the park should be open. Staff will check.
Mayor Hartfield asked Council how they would like to handle the issue regarding the passage of the zoning ordinance. Mayor Hartfield suggested reintroducing the ordinance, holding a public hearing and voting on the ordinance again. She indicated the importance of erring on the side of caution regarding the process and clarity of law. Councilmember Barsky agreed. Councilmember Mershon suggested that Council check with the Law Director as to Council’s ability to reopen the process and if the ordinance would need to go before the Planning Commission again. He also questioned if the actions taken by Council last year regarding the Gateway Ordinance would also be called into question. Council agreed to refer these questions to the Law Director for a response.
Councilmember Barsky raised the issue of standing and expressed concern as to who has standing. She expressed concern about the process being transparent. Councilmember Barsky indicated that she has concerns about the enforcement of standing, citing that standing was strictly enforced in earlier years, but strict legal interpretation could be detrimental. Councilmember Tegtmeyer indicated that Council needs to maintain a balance and timeliness to any process. Councilmember Mershon asked if anyone had been denied standing. Individuals have expressed concern about being denied standing, but no one has been denied an opportunity to speak. Councilmember Mershon questioned if the issue was more about theory that a practical problem.
Councilmember Barsky questioned the status of the Lifestyle Museum. Manager Holycross indicated that staff had not received any information. Staff will check the status of the process.
Councilmember Barsky also stated that residents have advised her of a prevalent problem with vehicles running red lights at Cherry Valley Road and State Route 16. Manager Holycross indicated that he would discuss the problem with the police department.
Councilmember McGowan moved to adjourn the meeting. Second by Councilmember Barsky. Motion carried 6-0. Meeting adjourned.