Agendas and Minutes

City Council (View All)

Special Meeting

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

September 25, 2007
Siskiyou Room,
51 Winburn Way

Council Chair Russ Silbiger called the meeting to order at 6:07 p.m.

Councilors Hardesty, Hartzell, Jackson, Navickas and Chapman were present. Mayor Morrison was absent.

1. Public Hearing to discuss revising the adopted budget and local option property tax levy to operate the Ashland Library for July 1, 2007 to June 30, 2008.

Administrator Services/Finance Director Lee Tuneberg explained that the public hearing is to certify the tax rates to the county, which is an unusual process at this time. He noted the normal budget process and the need to adjust the budget by reducing the tax rate due to the levy that had most recently been approved by the voters.

Mr. Tuneberg explained that the proposed ordinance and resolution is to recognize the new tax rate and to certify this rate with the county. He stated that because there is such a short time frame for it to become effective upon certification at the county the ordinance was created with an emergency clause for effective date.

Public Hearing Open: 6:11 p.m.
Public Hearing Closed: 6:11 p.m.

Ordinance was read aloud in full.

Councilor Hartzell/Chapman m/s to approve first reading of Ordinance and move to second reading. Roll Call Vote: Navickas, Silbiger, Hartzell, Hardesty, Chapman and Jackson, YES. Motion passed.

Councilor Jackson/Hartzell m/s to approve Ordinance #2941 with the emergency clause effective date. Roll Call Vote: Hartzell, Jackson, Navickas, Silbiger, Chapman and Hardesty, YES. Motion passed.

Councilor Hartzell/Jackson m/s to approve Resolution 2007-36. Roll Call Vote: Chapman, Hardesty, Hartzell, Navickas, Silbiger and Jackson, YES. Motion passed.

Mr. Tuneberg advised the council that they would now need to get together and discuss how to use this money. Clarification was made that the council was bound to adhere to what was proposed in the ballot measure.


1. DRAFT Council Rules.
City Administrator Martha Bennett presented the draft of the Council Rules that the council sub-committee had been working on. She indicated that there were various typos and clarifications in the document and that staff would work these out.

Art Bullock/Presented the following suggestions to the various sections:

• 2.2 Adjourned meeting section did not make sense
• 2.6 36 hours not effective way to give notice and asked to add email list serve to noticing requirement
• 2.11 Reconsider, as he is not clear on what the perimeters are. Asked that this be more specific on who can reconsider, when reconsideration can happen and what the legal ground would be.
• 3 (B) Clarification on adding topics to the agenda
• 3 (C) Stated that this does not specify voting and asked for clarification; and voiced concern that added topics would not have had any public noticing.
• 4.1 Requested that signs be allowed or clarification made for when signs would be allowed
• Public Forum - does not believe that the council has the authority to state who cannot speak when a subject has been closed
• 9.2 Requested that Resolutions not require roll call vote
• 8.0 Stated that this should include the mayor or language that includes the mayor
• 9.0 Questioned sections recommended by Councilor Chapman

Councilor Hardesty led the group discussion on the issues raised by Mr. Bullock. Clarification and discussion on the following sections:     

• 2.2 Section should imply that any meeting can be adjourned
• 2.6 Notice of meetings should be posted in prominent place
• 2.11 Should include standard language from Roberts Rules of Order
• 3(B) Should imply that if no staff work involved item could go on agenda, should be careful to not make it too difficult for councilor to bring reports forward and should give City Administrator the authority to set agenda.
• 3(C) Clarifications should be made on what staff time would be recommendation that the 2-hour rules be cross-referenced in regards to staff time.
• 3(D) Add "this method will generally be confined to emergency or time sensitive items"; clarified that this language comes directly from current language in State Public Meetings Law; Suggestion was made to just leave as majority vote and add suggested "sensitive" language
• 2.7 Any advertised item is automatically moved to next regularly scheduled meeting
• 3.3 Discussion on how much and when material is provided to council at a meeting
• 3.2 Language does not seem consistent and could be combined
• 4.1 Suggestion to look at constitution and rights on "time, place and manner", discussed what regulating signs means and when it would be appropriate to exercise this right
• 5(6) Public Forum - discussion on clarification on what the intent is on "matter that is still pending". Suggestion to amend to "and the matter is still pending"
• 9.2 Discussion on adopting Resolutions on Consent Agenda, agreement that Resolutions on Consent Agenda should be minor ones and statement
• Resolutions that are on Consent Agenda do not require Roll Call vote"
• 6.1 and 6.2 Both sections seem to be similar, need to look at and make correction
• 9.6 Should be consistent with appointment process as this should not be inconsistent with State Law, suggestion to have reference to "cause", suggestion to remove "notice of removal to the …."in addition "shall be handled with …."
• It was noted that the enforcement section of the Municipal Code needs to be updated
• 8.0 Conduct with City Employees - Council discussed the 2-hour rule and how it would work and how to get information to the council on various issues. It was stated that the City Administrator needs to have the ability to make decisions on staff's time.

Statement was made that this was about access to information without affecting the ability for staff to get their work done. That it is not about council but about staff and that the rules need to be clear.

Suggestion was made to make distinction between when council approaches staff and when staff invites council to approach. Stressed importance of allowing the full council to all have the same information.

• 8(B) Suggestion to remove "all" and add "generally"
• 8(A) Council continued discussion on the 2 hour rule without consensus on this item with the following comments:                     

• Council should act as a group or go through City Administrator; is a matter of respecting staff's time; should not deviate from council's agenda
• Group should consider what the role of the council is
• Council should act as a group or go through City Administrator; is a matter of respecting staff's time; should not deviate from council's agenda
• Group should consider what the role of the council is
• Decisions need to be made fore the full council
• 2 hour rule should be applied to Department Heads only
• Council should have access to basic information
• Important to have access to staff
• Clarification that this is about priority
• Idea is to find a general rule that works for everyone; suggestion to add "or City Attorney" as applicable
• 8(C) Statement that (A) and (C) conflict; clarification that "individual councilor" cannot be influenced

Council debated and discussed the definition of "influence" and "coercion but did not reach agreement. It was stated by the Chair that there was fundamental disagreement amongst the councilors on what their role as councilor is and what "influence" and "coercion" means.

It was suggested that legal language should be included that considered how it could be abused.
Statement was made that individual councilor discussions with staff should take place in public meetings not private meetings.

Staff will continue to work on this language and bring back for further discussion.

It was suggested that any further comments should be written up and distributed for review by council and staff. Consensus on suggestion to draft ordinance based on Sections 8 through 12 and Section 13.

Meeting adjourned at 8:40 p.m.

Barbara Christensen, City Recorder
Russ Silbiger, Council Chair

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