Agendas and Minutes

City Council (View All)

Regular Meeting

Tuesday, February 16, 2010




February 16, 2010

Council Chambers

1175 E. Main Street




Mayor Stromberg called the meeting to order at 7:04 p.m. in the Civic Center Council Chambers.



Councilor Voisin, Navickas, Lemhouse, Jackson, Silbiger and Chapman were present. 



Mayor Stromberg read an update on the duties of the Battalion of the 41st Brigade Combat Team of the Oregon National Guard (1/186) regarding their final push of deployment from Iraq, awards received and additional training. 


Mayor Stromberg announced vacancies for the annual appointments for Commission and Committee members. The deadline for applications is March 19, 2010.  He went on to share the launch of two projects, The Transportation System Plan Project and The Comprehensive Water Study.  Both projects will have a citizen advisory committee with three citizen at large positions.  The deadline is March 1, 2010. 



City Recorder Barbara Christensen noted a correction on the Regular minutes of February 2, 2010, page 7 of 9, the last motion on the Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT) revenue for tourism and non-tourism purposes for FY 2010-2011 and establishing criteria for the grant program discussion, read “Councilor Jackson/Jackson m/s” and should have read “Councilor Jackson/Navickas m/s.”


Councilor Jackson/Voisin m/s to approve minutes as revised.  Voice Vote:  all AYES.  Motion passed.



The Mayor's Proclamation of the 2010 Census was read aloud.  Noelia Hernandez from the US Census Bureau shared history on when the Census began and how it influences communities from establishing congressional seats to providing funds for social services, hospitals and clinics.  She explained the process for the 2010 Census was simplified, consisted of 10 questions and was confidential in order to count everyone documented or undocumented.  Those typically undercounted in communities were the homeless, low-income residents, renters, gated communities and immigrants.  She stressed the importance of everyone participating and partnership between the Census and community leaders.




Councilor Lemhouse/Chapman m/s to move item #3 under Ordinances, Resolutions and Contracts to the next regular meeting.  Voice Vote:  All AYES.  Motion passed.


1.     Does Council wish to approve a Liquor License Application from Dana Hight dba Deliver de Cuisine at 295 E Main Street?

2.     Will Council, acting as the Local Contract Review Board, approve a special procurement requesting approval to directly award a contract to update the transportation analysis for the Croman Mill Site Redevelopment Plan to DKS Associates?

Councilor Silbiger and Voisin requested Consent Agenda Item #2 be pulled for discussion.


Councilor Navickas/Voisin m/s approval of Consent Agenda item #1.  Voice Vote:  All AYES.  Motion passed.


Councilor Silbiger declared a conflict of interest regarding Consent Agenda item #2 and requested Council to excuse him from the discussion.


Council consensus was in favor of excusing Councilor Silbiger from the discussion.  Voice Vote:  All AYES.  Motion passed.


Councilor Silbiger left the room at 7:21 p.m.


Community Director Bill Molnar explained the reasons for updating the transportation analysis for the Croman Mill Site Redevelopment Plan were to include an additional land use scenario and address the affect the improvements will have at the Mistletoe-Tolman Creek intersection if the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) remained at their current location.  The Land Use Board of Appeals (LUBA) stated transportation needs must be addressed at the time property is rezoned.  The actual $11,000 for the transportation analysis was budgeted the previous year under Community Development Contractual Services for technical studies as part of Long Range Planning. 


Councilor Chapman/Voisin m/s to approve Consent Agenda items #2 and #3. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.


Councilor Silbiger returned to the meeting at 7:27 pm



1.     Does Council wish to amend Chapters 18.112 and 18.108 of the Ashland Land Use Ordinance (ALUO) to provide for timetable tolling during pending appeals and court proceedings.

Community Development Director Bill Molnar provided the staff report and background.  Senior Planner Brandon Goldman gave a presentation highlighting points from the Planning Commission’s review of the proposed ordinance:

Timetable Tolling Ordinance

  • Suspension of clock during appeals to LUBA or Courts
  • Automatic extension equal to the exact number of days the Planning Approval is under appeal
  • Maximum period of 24 Months

Recession Extension Ordinance

  • One-time 18 Month extension
  • Application required
  • Eligibility Criteria:  Period eligibility; land Use requirements unchanged; a change of conditions prevented the applicant from completing development


Public Hearing Open: 7:29 p.m.

Public Hearing Closed: 7:29 p.m.


City Attorney Richard Appicello read the ordinance title aloud.


Councilor Jackson/Silbiger m/s to approve first reading of an ordinance amending the Ashland Municipal Code for Tolling and Planning actions.  Roll Call Vote:  Councilor Voisin, Navickas, Lemhouse, Jackson, Silbiger and Chapman, YES.  Motion passed.

2.     Does Council wish to amend Chapters 18.112 and 18.108 of the Ashland Land Use Ordinance (ALUO) to provide for a timetable extension for land development and building activity delayed due to the economic recession.  

Community Development Director Bill Molnar explained a recession extension should not be automatic,  it should have a process and that the Planning Commission recommended the Council determine eligibility.


Senior Planner Brandon Goldman further explained the proposed ordinance would include a one-time 18-month extension for original planning approvals.  It would also require an application, be subject to fees, meet eligibility criteria, and could go into effect as early as April 2, 2010.  Applications from October 2007 that were currently valid at the effective date of the ordinance would be eligible.  Council could also push the eligibility period back to July 1, 2009.    


Eligibility criteria for a recession extension would require that land use conditions had not changed and circumstances beyond the applicant’s control necessitated the extension.  The Council could make the criteria more explicit.  Applicants deemed complete who were affected by the financing being withdrawn prior to January 1, 2009 were eligible, anyone who applied after that date should have been aware of economic situation.  Currently there were 40 applicants involved, half-commercial and half-residential. 


Public Hearing Open: 7:47 p.m.


Mark DiRenzio/931 Beswick Way/Supported the proposal for the recession extension and thought the City was possibly passing up a huge potential to get more money through System Development Charges (SDC), permit fees, potential jobs and economic development.  It was a reasonable thing to do in extraordinary times and he saw no disadvantages to the extension.  He thought there were some issues with the timetables but overall felt it would contribute to economic development for the City.


Philip Lang/750 B Street/Thought the proposed Ashland Land Use ordinance change was bad public policy, discriminatory, contrary to the City’s potential needs and an indirect subsidy to speculative builders and explained why.  The extension did not have criteria, eligibility requirements or any assessment of governing conditions.   It was a speculative developer giveaway.  One of the benefactors would be a development corporation that had not paid property taxes totaling $43,000 for three years.  He noted families were losing their homes due to foreclosure and wanted to know what assistance the Council was offering them rather than developers who want to wait until it is more profitable to go ahead with their projects.


Public Hearing Closed: 7:55 p.m.


Council and staff discussed having a two part criteria for eligibility dates.  An application that was deemed complete prior to January 1, 2009, had received and maintained approval until the effective date of the ordinance would meet the eligibility requirements.


Councilor Navickas/Lemhouse m/s to amend Section 18.112.035B Language proposed under Alternative C:  “…having received approval prior to July 1, 2009, and current as of January 1, 2010…”

DISCUSSION:  Councilor Navickas thought it was practical and broadened the dates.  Councilor Jackson added any applicant with an approved application since July 1, 2009 should have known about the economic downturn and would not be eligible for an extension. Councilor Chapman suggested either pushing the dateline back further or shorten the extension to 12 months instead of 18 months.  Councilor Lemhouse commented approving the motion would give Council time to research and make adjustments during second reading.  Roll Call Vote:  Councilor Jackson, Navickas, Lemhouse, Voisin and Silbiger, YES; Councilor Chapman; NO.  Motion passed 5-1.


Council discussed and approved the following for consideration during second reading:  scenarios for 12-month and 18-month extensions, adding criteria specifically stating the extension was due to the economic recession, adding criterion under 18.112.035(B) that substantial site conditions applicable to the development had not changed since the original approval then having some form of citizen review.  Council discussed but did not support adding proof of loan criteria.


Councilor Jackson/Silbiger m/s to approve first reading of an ordinance establishing timetable extensions for recession conditions and move to second reading with staff providing language options.

DISCUSSION:  City Attorney Richard Appicello read the ordinance title aloud. Councilor Navickas would not support the motion, this was a long-term economic downturn and the City should look at new development projects more in line with the current economic situation.  Roll Call Vote:  Councilor Chapman, Lemhouse, Jackson, Voisin and Silbiger, YES; Councilor Navickas; NO.  Motion passed 5-1.



Susan Moen/43Morninglight Drive/Provided an update from Shelley Elkovich regarding the group of community members, sexual assault response professionals and City officials that have been meeting to address rape in the community. The group learned there are excellent services for sexual assault survivors, through Sexual Assault Response Team (SART) and Sexual Assault Victim Services (SAVS) and free self-defense classes from the Chamber of Commerce. The group wants to improve how the community talks about sexual assault.  An aspect of prevention was focusing on perpetrator behavior, without rapists there would not be rape. This distinction shifted blame from a victim who made a poor or unsafe choice to the unacceptable behavior of a predator.  The group is working with SART and SAVS to design an abbreviated 3-hour training of their advocacy trainings as part of Sexual Assault Awareness Month in April.  She noted the Mayor was attending and invited the Council and others to attend as well.  The group will also plan a sexual assault prevention session with Community Works.


Police Chief Holderness provided an update on the two sexual assault cases that occurred in Ashland earlier noting there was nothing reportable on either investigation.  Physical evidence was undergoing analysis at the Crime Lab along with DNA checks.  Processing evidence takes time due to the levels of testing performed and crime labs are significantly underfunded. 


Councilor Navickas added the group also recommended a bi-annual or quarterly meeting with the Police Chief, advocacy groups and school organizations to pool resources.


Wes Brain/298 Garfield/Explained he had listened to the City Recorder earlier on the radio discussing bank fees and the City using Bank of America and noted no one addressed the corrupt banking that Bank of America represents.  He wanted to know if Ashland’s financial deposits with Bank of America were used for investing in the community.  He sent the Mayor and Councilor Chapman material on evaluating banks and an article on Lake Oswego that started using local banks as part of local economic development.  He explained a chart that ranks banks on whether the money is rooted in community, who owns it and if the deposits create good loans in the community and showed that Bank of America received zeroes on each aspect and commented on the movement to localize the economy by banking locally.



1.      Does Council want to adopt the City Council Goals for 2010?  

City Administrator Martha Bennett provided a summary of the goals process and noted the following changes to the Goals:


·   Develop an implementing strategy for funding infrastructure and public facilities for economic development projects.


·   Develop a strategy to use conservation and local renewable sources to meet Tier 2 power demands.

·   Plan for low-water years including potentially 2010 by:

o        Implementing a public information and technical assistance campaign that encourages summer time conservation.

o        Consider the options for a summer time surcharge to encourage efficient irrigation practices prior to June 1, 2010.

Social Equity

·   Complete the sale of a portion of the Clay Street Property to Parks and Recreation and decide whether to develop or sell the remaining land.

·   Convene a discussion of stakeholders working on issues related to homelessness to develop a plan for:

o        Replacing services previously provided by ICCA.

o        Developing an emergency shelter for minors.

o        Improving connections to services available in Jackson County to Ashland’s homeless.

o        Ensuring Jackson County’s 10 Year Plan addresses the specific issues faced in Ashland.

·   Complete affordable housing on Clay Street property.

Public Facilities

·   Define a long-term strategy for the Ashland Fiber Network that improves its financial viability, provides high quality services to residents, and promotes healthy economic development.


·   Advocate for the long-term viability of rail service to and through Ashland and encourage the use of rail through land use, transportation, and economic development planning.


Ms. Bennett concluded that the goals were achievable in the 18-24 month period with the possible exception of the Homeless goal. 


Ross Finney/225 Ohio St/Explained he was the Chair of the Ashland Conservation Commission and shared comments and recommendations from the Conservation Commission regarding the Council’s 2010-2011 Goals.  For the Environmental Goal to develop a strategy to meet Tier 2 power demands, the Commission recommended promoting conservation measures deemed cost effective by Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) to maximize energy efficiency and cost recovery to the City and utility customers.  Measure savings realized and program costs recovered in early 2011.  Promote and support a campaign to get renewable solar hot water heating on as many businesses and homes as possible.


For the Environmental Goal regarding adopting land use codes and building codes, the Commission recommended the City add green building standards to the language.  On the Environmental Goal to implement specific capital projects, the recommendation would add verbiage to develop baseline measures for greenhouse gasses using the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI) process. On the Environmental Goal adopting an integrated Water Master Plan, the Commission asked to be an active participant in developing the plan. 


For the General Goal, the Commission recommended the City have a staff person whose duties include implementation of the City’s sustainable goals.


Councilor Lemhouse/Jackson m/s to adopt the Goals set by City Council for 2010.


Councilor Navickas/Jackson m/s amend the motion to include green building standards recommended by the Conservation Commission.  Roll Call Vote:  Councilor Chapman, Lemhouse, Jackson, Navickas, Silbiger and Voisin, YES.  Motion passed.


CONTINUED DISCUSSION ON AMENDED MOTION:  Councilor Jackson responded to Wes Brain’s earlier testimony and explained the Council discussed banking locally during the goal process and asked the City Recorder to research the possibilities of banking locally.  City Recorder Barbara Christensen clarified Mr. Brain’s testimony was in regards to investments instead of banking services and explained City money is invested in the Local Investment Pool and the City tries to bank locally whenever possible. 

ROLL CALL VOTE ON AMENDED MOTION:  Councilor Lemhouse, Jackson, Navickas, Silbiger and Voisin, YES; Councilor Chapman, NO. Motion passed 5-1.


2.   Will the Council adopt a resolution allocating Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT) revenue for tourism and non-tourism purposes for FY 2010-2011 and establishing criteria for the grant program?

City Administrator Martha Bennett explained staff identified an additional $80,000 and allocated approximately $1,000 each to the Economic Cultural Grants and Public Art, increased Other Capital Projects to $19,785, allocated $15,000 to City Economic Development program and moved the remaining $43,760 to the General Fund.


Administrative Director Lee Tuneberg clarified the General Fund is restricted and accounted for in the Ending Fund Balance.  It was noted small grants increased $25,000 to $182,080 from last years $157,079.


Catie Faryl/200 East Nevada/Read names from a written statement of people who had her called in support of Mayor Stromberg’s proposal and organizations supporting sustainable groups.  She saw this as the next wave of prosperity for Ashland. 


Council discussed a suggestion to move $15,000 from the General Fund to sustainability small grants.

Supporting comments included the additional dollars would help sustainability and other grants and the importance of returning those tax dollars to the community, the recession was a time to spend not save money.  Opposing comments supported retaining the money in the General Fund as a cushion since there was no money in that Fund and sustainability small grants had $12,500 already allocated.  


Councilor Lemhouse/Silbiger m/s to allocate $900 dollars to Economic and Cultural Development Grants, $1,000 to Public Art, $19,785 to Other City Capital Projects and the remaining $58,760 to the General Fund.  Roll Call Vote:  Councilor Chapman, Jackson, Lemhouse and Silbiger, YES; Councilor Voisin and Navickas, NO.  Motion passed 4-2.


Councilor Jackson/Silbiger m/s to approve Resolution 2010-06 as revised.  Roll Call Vote:  Councilor Voisin, Jackson, Silbiger and Navickas, YES; Councilor Chapman and Lemhouse, NO.  Motion passed 4-2.



1.   Should the Council approve Second Reading of an Ordinance annexing 1.2 acres at 615 Washington Street and withdrawing the property from Jackson County Fire District No. 5? 

Richard read the ordinance title aloud.


Councilor Navickas/Lemhouse m/s to approve Ordinance #3004.  Roll Call Vote:  Councilor Jackson, Lemhouse, Voisin, Silbiger and Chapman, YES, Motion Passed



1.   Should the Council approve the Ashland Forest Resiliency Supplemental Project Agreement between the United States Forest Service, the City of Ashland, the Nature Conservancy, and Lomakatsi Restoration Project? 

Fire Chief John Karns introduced Justin Columbine and Marko Bey from the Lomakatsi Forest Restoration Project, Don Boucher from the US Forest Service, Chris Chambers from Ashland Fire Department, and Darren Borgias from the Nature Conservancy and City Forester Marty Main form Small Woodland Services.  He noted the only change to the Master Stewardship Agreement (MSA) was the termination date rolled over to January 2020 due to the delay.  He explained the Supplemental Project Agreement (SPA) further defined specific tasks and roles for the MSA.


Mr. Chambers explained the City would use the salary from his new position, a percentage of Chief Karns’ salary and Mr. Main’s contract to match the required partners’ portion.  Funds will be requested from the US Forest Service to cover additional costs for Mr. Main’s services for the next two fiscal years not provided in his current contract.    


The City’s role was clarified as co-lead regarding prescription creation, tree marking, thinning operations and general involvement throughout the project to ensure procedures will be followed accordingly. 


Councilor Chapman/Lemhouse m/s to approve the Ashland Forest Resiliency Supplemental Project Agreement.  DISCUSSION: Councilor Navickas read the last sentence under Specifications Item 1.0 – Density Management, including tree felling, yarding, and removal:  “All diameter and age classes are available for treatment based on a description of desired conditions.”  He explained large diameter logging has been controversial in the community for years and signing the agreement would approve that form of logging.  He read from a 1980 document that noted serious concerns that resulted from previous US Forest Service fire management measures.  The document concluded that even though there were benefits from removing large diameter trees, it created more fire hazard and explained how.  He encouraged the Council to take a critical stance on logging large diameter trees.  Roll Call Vote:  Councilor Voisin, Lemhouse, Jackson, Silbiger and Chapman, YES; Councilor Navickas, NO.  Motion passed 5-1


Councilor Voisin cautioned the partners that their actions would be monitored.


Councilor Jackson/Chapman m/s move to authorize staff to make minor alterations including signing and changing the date on the contract.  Voice Vote.  All AYES. 



3.   Which option for the revision of the fireworks ordinance in AMC 15.28.070 does the Council wish to consider?  

Fire Chief Karns provided an update on requested information establishing a permitting process and a program based on the fire danger rating.   For the permitting process, staff reviewed similar programs throughout the nation and developed criteria appropriate for the City and Risk Management.  Extensive research on a Fire Danger Rating program did not produce a reliable process and was not feasible.  The remaining options included a partial City ban, a full City ban and a permit based program for private property below Siskiyou Boulevard. 


Chief Karns confirmed residents would be able to obtain a street blockage permit along with a fireworks permit for block parties with the Fire Department evaluating the site.  Issuing permits would be manageable enforcement would be difficult.  The process would be gradual compliance over several years.


Council discussed the pros and cons of the permitting process, a citywide ban and the initial proposal of banning above Siskiyou Boulevard.  The permitting process was more an opportunity for education rather than enforcement.  Concern was raised on the fairness of a partial ban.  Staff suggested combining a ban above Siskiyou Boulevard with a public education campaign on the criteria in the ordinance for a year then revisit permitting.  


Councilor Lemhouse/Jackson  m/s to approve first reading of the ordinance which adopts Option Two and move to second reading.  DISCUSSION:  City Attorney Richard Appicello read the ordinance title aloud.  Roll Call Vote:  Councilor Silbiger, Jackson, and Lemhouse, YES; Councilor Chapman, Navickas and Voisin, NO.  Mayor Stromberg, NO.  Motion failed 4-3.


Councilor Chapman/Voisin m/s adopt first reading of the ordinance for a total fireworks ban. 

DISCUSSION:  Mr. Appicello read the ordinance title aloud.  Roll Call Vote:  Councilor Silbiger, Chapman, Jackson and Voisin, YES; Councilor Navickas and Lemhouse, NO.  Motion passed 4-2.



2.   Should the Council approve First Reading of an Ordinance that amends the Living Wage ordinance by defining "twelve month period" and clarifying that the City does not require retroactive payments?  


Councilor Jackson/Chapman m/s continuation of the Living Wage Ordinance to the next the Council meeting. Voice Vote:  all AYES.  Motion passed.


3.   Does Council wish to adopt various ordinances classifying Municipal Code Offenses and creating a base fine system?

3 a.   Should the Council approve First Reading of an Ordinance amending Chapter 1.08 to add provisions concerning the classification of offenses, and move the ordinance on to Second Reading?


3 b.   Should the Council approve First Reading of an Ordinance amending Chapter 9 to add provisions concerning the classification of offenses, and move the ordinance on to Second Reading?


3 c.   Should the Council approve First Reading of an Ordinance amending Chapter 10 to add provisions concerning the classification of offenses, and move the ordinance on to Second Reading?


3 d.   Should the Council approve First Reading of an Ordinance amending Chapter 11 to add provisions concerning the classification of offenses, and move the ordinance on to Second Reading?  


Items continued to the next regular meeting.





Meeting was adjourned at 10:29 p.m.



John Stromberg, Mayor

Dana Smith, Assistant to City Recorder                         



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