Agendas and Minutes

City Council (View All)

Regular Meeting

Minutes
Tuesday, November 20, 2001

MINUTES FOR THE REGULAR MEETING
ASHLAND CITY COUNCIL
November 20, 2001 - 7:00 p.m.
Civic Center Council Chambers, 1175 E. Main Street

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
Mayor DeBoer called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. in the City Council Chambers.

ROLL CALL
Councilors Laws, Reid, Hanson, Morrison and Hearn were present. Councilor Hartzell was absent.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES
The Minutes of the Regular Council Meeting of November 6, 2001 were approved as presented.

SPECIAL PRESENTATIONS & AWARDS
Presentation by the Planning Commission on current activities was rescheduled.

CONSENT AGENDA

  1. Minutes of Boards, Commissions and Committees.
  2. Liquor License Application from Jeff Pygott, dba Jeff's Harvest Market.

Councilors Morrison/Hanson m/s to approve Consent Agenda. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.

PUBLIC HEARINGS
1. Public Hearing Regarding a Resolution Authorizing and Ordering Improvements Consisting of Curbs, Gutters, Storm Drains, Paving and Sidewalks and Associated Improvements for Strawberry Lane, Nutley Street, Alnut Street, Scenic Avenue and Westwood Street.

City Attorney Paul Nolte clarified that although Councilor Reid is a property owner participating in the proposed Local Improvement District (LID) that since she declared her potential conflict of interest, she would be able to participate in the deliberation of this proposed LID.

John McLaughlin, Director of Community Development, gave a brief overview of the Strawberry Local Improvement District Proposal. He noted an estimated total project cost of $1,076,697.00, with the City's total portion being $735,149, the developers' portion $136,618.00, and the neighborhood's portion $204,930.00.

Public Works Director Paula Brown noted that a public meeting was held two months ago. At that meeting, concern was expressed over how the proposed improvements would affect the homes in the district. Brown expressed her belief that the city could stay within available limits and right-of-ways and stated goals of not taking down trees, providing narrow streets, and working within minimum boundaries while providing adequate safe access for emergency vehicles. She further noted that the council was only being asked to form the district, not to approve a design for the district. Designs will be brought to council and property owners throughout the process.

PUBLIC HEARING OPEN 7:18 p.m.
Susan Powell/180 Nutley/Noted that she is not opposed to the LID, but voiced her concern over the potential removal of trees. She feels the trees are not only valuable, but provide privacy between neighbors and a buffer between homes and the street. She also noted her concern over the width of the streets and how sidewalks would be introduced.

Harry Bartel/365 Strawberry Lane/Voiced his opposition of installation of sidewalks and noted that it is within the jurisdiction of the council to modify the sidewalk statute under special circumstances. He urged the elimination of the sidewalk requirements from the Strawberry LID.

Jerry Taylor/375 Alnutt/Stated his opinion that sidewalks should not be required as there is very little walking traffic in the affected neighborhoods. He also noted that street width should be designed for minimal impact. He also felt that the width of the streets should be considered for minimal impact.

Barry Katzen/29 Scenic/Noted his length of residency in this area, his favor of the paving project, and voiced his concern regarding traffic safety issues. He recommended widening the road in his area and eliminating sidewalk requirements.

Merle Mills/34 Scenic Dr/Noted his length of residency in the neighborhood, and that widening the roads would require the cutting of banks and removal of trees. He stated his opposition to sidewalks.

Dan McLeary/185 Granite/Spoke regarding the dangerous slope incline of Strawberry Lane and Granite Street. He advocated the use of special street surfacing.

Christine Crawley/124 Strawberry Lane/Voiced opposition to paving and stated her concern regarding the dangerous slope incline of the streets. She requested that sidewalks not be installed.

Judy Oursler/252 Strawberry Lane/Spoke in favor of paving the streets as long as it is done with care and consideration of the neighborhood. She asked that the installation of sidewalks also be carefully considered due to safety concerns. She requested that underground utilities be installed at the time the LID is constructed.

Susan Hunt/220 Nutley/Voiced her concern regarding the need for public input for this LID and requested that there be additional public and council input in regards to the design. She noted the uniqueness of the area, the design problems, and that paving and sidewalks should be minimized to reduce impact on the character of the neighborhood.

Sue DeMarinis/240 Strawberry Lane/Noted that the area she lives in is paved. She shared that during bad weather times the streets are treacherous and alternate streets are usually used. She noted that alternate paving methods that would be better for safety reasons, including a grooved pavement, which might provide additional traction. She spoke against installing conventional sidewalks.

Patricia Zolene/240 Nutley Street/Stated that her property is intersected by the ditch road and felt that sidewalks are not necessary. She invited the council to think outside of the box and noted that this area would serve everyone adequately without the addition of sidewalks.

Debra Kutcher/315 Maple Street/Voiced her concern regarding the lack of parking and sidewalks and how this could create safety issues for pedestrians. She suggested that a walking strip be considered.

Chris Abbott and Walter Stokes/215 Nutley/Submitted email that voiced their concern regarding the proposed LID and felt that there were safety issues that need to be addressed before moving forward with this LID.

PUBLIC HEARING CLOSED 7:54 p.m.

ORDINANCES, RESOLUTIONS AND CONTRACTS
1. Reading by title only of "A Resolution Authorizing and Ordering Improvements for Strawberry Lane, Nutley Street, Alnut Street, Scenic Avenue, and Westwood Street for the Strawberry Local Improvement District No. 83 and Authorizing the Assessment of the Cost of the Improvement against Property to be Benefitted and Authorizing the City to borrow money and issue and sell notes for the purpose of providing interim financing for the actual cost of the Local Improvement."

Councilors Laws/Morrison m/s to approve Resolution with the understanding that there will be a very special and careful design process. DISCUSSION: Reid voiced her concern with the 22 new homes on Westwood and the potential safety issues that need to be taken into consideration for the safety of children using this area. Morrison supported looking at a plan that considers the special needs of this neighborhood. It was determined that Strawberry and Leonard Streets are very steep. Reid noted the need to underground utilities at the time of this improvement and requested staff to provide cost figures between doing it now vs. later. Hearn expressed his support of preserving the character of the neighborhood, and advocated creativity in the planning process. Hanson noted the sparse population of the area and wondered why sidewalks are needed when nobody wants them. Concern was voiced that the plan is consistent with the special qualities of the neighborhood and that consideration be given to various design options and alternatives. Voice Vote: Laws, Reid, Hanson, Morrison and Hearn, YES. Motion passed.

Mayor DeBoer acknowledged the difficulty of the project and noted that in about three months the first preliminary plan might be expected.

PUBLIC FORUM
Andrew Bangsberg/298 Bridge Street/Spoke regarding the need to revisit the 24-hour taxi service requirement, as he perceives a need to provide a taxi service for adult individuals in the community who drink and do not want to drive.

Eric Navickas/711 Faith Street/Spoke regarding the City-owned Winburn property parcel located inside the Ashland Watershed area. He noted the property's historic significance, the presence of rare and sensitive species, and the inappropriateness of logging there. He felt the area should be preserved and requests full disclosure and public notice concerning the project.

Asha Wolf-Stout/130 Orange Street/Read an apology for his criminal trespassing charge in the Ashland Watershed as was required by his student peer jury.

Ryan Navickas/711 Faith Street/Voiced his disappointment in the paving of Strawberry Lane and the additional development of housing in this area. He pointed out that there are many homeless individuals and requested that the council take initiative in solving and providing shelter for these individuals.

DeBoer responded that public notification would be done on the logging project. It was noted that the goals of the Forest Commission include that if logging is done it will be for forest preservation as opposed to economic reasons, and that meetings are always open to the public.

UNFINISHED BUSINESS (None)

NEW AND MISCELLANEOUS BUSINESS

  1. Water Curtailment and Summer 2001 Water Results.
    Public Works Director Paula Brown reported that the reservoir was filling up and offered her thanks to the community that the implementation of the "no water waste" provision worked mainly through the support of the community. She noted that the reservoir's lowest point was 64%, and is now at 70%. She suggested lifting the "no waste" provision while continuing to advocate careful use of water.

    The council acknowledged the lifting of the "no water waste" provision.

  2. Report from AFN Advisory Committee.
    A brief report was given outlining the current activities and status of Ashland's Fiber Network, including Business Plan revision, the development of a reporting system format, and evaluation of various methods of performance improvement. Dick Wanderscheid explained that the committee report was done by consensus of the committee and that staff, at the request of the committee, produced the quarterly report. He noted the expectation that the 2nd quarterly report would include a detailed analysis of items listed in the current report.

    Finance Director Lee Tuneberg gave an overview of the AFN Quarterly Report including revenue and expense projections based on a Business Plan basis. He noted an upward trend in revenue as the system is built out, a downward trend in expenses, and touched on business competition issues. He noted that they tried to provide key elements in the Business Plan, how they changed them with conservative estimates, and what the impact was financially, from an operational standpoint.

    Council member Don Laws noted his interest in a Business Plan and asked clarification of the assumptions that led to the changes. Wanderscheid explained that the proposed Business Plan is based on budgetary authority and allocation of present staff and resources, noting that acceleration of build-out or marketing would require more resources. It was noted that plans were in process to take advantage of the current problems of Charter's @home service, including increasing the hours of present staff, and training to provide instant installations while still providing quality customer service. Reid expressed her hope that there is enough flexibility in the system to take full advantage of this opportunity. Laws noted that we need to be more entrepreneurial, rather than bureaucratic, and expressed his satisfaction with the way AFN is moving. Hanson noted his approval of moving aggressively in this opportunity. Morrison suggested contracting with private providers to help in the short term.

Collin Swales/461Allison St/Noted his support of AFN and asked the council to be aware we are in a tank swimming with sharks.

ORDINANCES, RESOLUTIONS AND CONTRACTS
1. First reading of "An Ordinance Amending Sections 15.04.200 and 15.04.212 by Changing the Composition of the Demolition Review Committee."

Councilors m/s to approve first reading of Ordinance and place on agenda for second reading. Roll Call Vote: Hearn, Morrison, Hanson, Reid and Laws, YES. Motion passed.

OTHER BUSINESS FROM COUNCIL MEMBERS/REPORTS FROM COUNCIL LIAISONS
Morrison confirmed that he would be able to attend the Wild Fire Presentation. DeBoer acknowledged Caring Friends of Ashland for providing Thanksgiving Dinner at the new Armory on Thanksgiving Day.

It was noted that there will be no Study Session for November 22, 2001.

ADJOURNMENT
Meeting was adjourned at 9:25 p.m.

Respectfully submitted by Barbara Christensen, City Recorder

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