Agendas and Minutes

City Council (View All)

Study Session

Monday, March 16, 2009

Monday, March 16, 2009
Siskiyou Room, 51 Winburn Way

Mayor Stromberg called the meeting to order at 5:33 p.m.

Councilor Voisin, Jackson, Silbiger and Chapman were present. Councilor Navickas arrived at 5:35 p.m. and Councilor Lemhouse at 5:39 p.m.

1. Discussion of Water and Wastewater utility rates effective April 20, 2009.
Administrative Services Director Lee Tuneberg explained the rate increase consisted of water and sewer and the cost to the community would be an average of $6.66 per month through out the year based on a family of four living in a 1,500 square foot house on a corner lot during the winter months.

Mr. Tuneberg provided a presentation that included the following: (presentation attached)

  • Review of the Need for Water & Wastewater Rate Increase
  • Review Fund Health for Water and Wastewater
  • Proposed changes this year
  • A look forward to next year
  • Why Now?
  • Comparison of Operational Ending Fund Balance - All table
  • Ending Fund Balance Chart
  • Water & Wastewater Total Ending Fund Balances
  • Ending Fund Balance Chart - Projected with Larger Adjustments
  • Water Fund

Mr. Tuneberg stated it would be difficult to pay back the $700,000 loan from this year in bonds. The Cemetery Trust Fund has approximately $800,000 that qualifies as a Capital Interfund Loan with a five-year pay back period. If the Council decided to use the Cemetery Trust Fund as a Capital Interfund Loan, staff would identify a sequence of payments over the five years of the loan, restoring it with interest.

  • Revenue to Expense Issues

Mr. Tuneberg explained what was required for Water Revenue Bonds, Full Faith and Credit Bonds and the implications of lending money to the City from other City funds. Reducing internal costs would require an alternate revenue stream. He used the Technology Debt as an example stating enterprises contributed heavily to the annual $1.4million the City pays towards this debt. The General Fund was recently increased to keep property taxes and charges low, not paying franchise fees to this fund would create a tremendous shortfall.

  • Water Fund Needs
  • Wastewater Fund
  • Revenue to Expense Issues
  • Wastewater Fund Needs
  • Challenges -A Reminder from February 19, 2009
  • Will this work?

City Administrator Martha Bennett suggested that if the Council went with tiered rates to have a 10% base charge on the low tier and increase the upper tiers accordingly. The problem with both funds is operating costs exceed revenue and due to the economic situation, the City has gone into money reserved for Systems Development Charges (SDC).

Mr. Tuneberg commented in the event of a dry summer and high tourism season, staff would ask for a rates decrease next year as long as the summer did not incur conservation or penalty charges.

2. Discussion of the FY10 Capital Improvement Program (CIP) project list, the overall FY10-15 CIP Program in concept, and the FY10 Capital Equipment Plan.
Public Works Director Mike Faught responded to an earlier inquiry regarding $500,000 in the proposed budget, explaining $350,000 was for the Wastewater Master Plan and $150,000 he recommended as reimbursement for each of the Systems Development Charges (SDC) funds.

Mr. Faught provided a presentation that included (presentation attached):

  • The CIP Document
  • Availability of Funds
  • Federal Stimulus Funded Projects
  • Master Plans

Mr. Faught explained the City is in permit review with the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) regarding water temperature and will have five years to go through the study and determine a solution.

  • FY09 Current Year
  • FY09 Current Year Highlights
  • FY10 CIP - Proposed Program by Division
  • FY10 CIP - Proposed Transportation Project List
  • FY10 CIP - Proposed LID and Storm Drain Project List
  • FY10 CIP - Proposed Airport Project List
  • FY10 CIP - Proposed Water Fund Project List

Mr. Faught noted that the Public Works Department would submit a Stimulus Package application for $4million April 15, 2009 for consideration pending the Council's approval.

  • FY10 CIP - Proposed Wastewater Fund Project List
  • FY10 CIP - Proposed Electric Fund Project List

Director of Electric Utilities Dick Wanderscheid explained projects for the Electric Department depend on new construction that is currently down this year but costs are recovered through fees.

  • FY10 CIP - Proposed AFN / Telecom / IT Project Lists

Interim Information Technology Director Michael Ainsworth noted the department had deployed approximately six extensions using the mesh net systems obtained from Medford and added mesh net goes one tenth of a mile where Wi Max goes five miles.

Telecommunication Engineer Richard Holbo discussed desktop and laptop replacement periods explaining that staff used a three-year replacement period because of warranties and the increased maintenance costs staff and hardware incurred when previous replacement periods were extended.

  • FY10 CIP - Proposed Facilities & Parks Project Lists
  • FY10 Capital Equipment Purchase Plan
  • FY10-15 CIP Plan
  • FY10-15 Highlights, Transportation, LIDs and Airport
  • FY10-15 CIP Highlights Storm Drain, Water, Wastewater
  • FY10-15 CIP Highlights Electric
  • FY10-15 CIP Highlights AFN, Telecom, IT
  • FY10-15 CIP Highlights City Facilities and Parks

Meeting was adjourned at 7:39 p.m.

Respectfully submitted,
Dana Smith
Assistant to the City Recorder


Online City Services

Pay your bill & more 
Connect to
Ashland Fiber Network
Request Conservation
Proposals, Bids
& Notifications
Request Building
Building Permit
Apply for Other
Permits & Licenses
Register for
Recreation Programs

©2024 City of Ashland, OR | Site Handcrafted in Ashland, Oregon by Project A




twitter facebook Email Share
back to top