Agendas and Minutes

City Council (View All)

Regular Meeting

Tuesday, June 04, 2013

June 4, 2013
Council Chambers
1175 E. Main Street

Mayor Stromberg called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. in the Civic Center Council Chambers.
Councilor Voisin, Morris, Slattery, Rosenthal, and Marsh were present.  Councilor Lemhouse arrived at 7:55 p.m.
Mayor Stromberg announced vacancies on the Firewise, Housing, Transportation, and Tree Commissions and one vacancy on the Band Board. 
He went on move the agenda item for the second reading of the ordinance to extend the Verde Village timetable following the Consent Agenda.   He also explained the resolution and affiliation agreement between City of Ashland, Asante, Ashland Community Hospital, and the Ashland Community Hospital Foundation would occur when the representatives arrived.
The minutes of the Business Meeting of May 21, 2013 were approved as presented.
Mayor Stromberg introduced Ashland High School Princesses Katie Shammel and Vicki Lawton-Diez who gave a brief presentation of what they would perform during their stay in the City Sister of Guanajuato, Mexico. 
1.   Approval of minutes from committees and commissions
2.   Renewal of ambulance operator’s license
3.   Amendment to IGA with Jackson County for Emergency Notification System
4.   Appointment of Dave Chapman to the Transportation Commission
5.   Approval of Local Agency Agreement No. 29101 for a Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality improvement grant for construction of Hersey Street sidewalk
6.   Appointment of Carol Davis to the Planning Commission
7.   Special procurement for the purchase of Type 1 fire pumpers
8.   Award of contract to apparent low bidder for the miscellaneous concrete project
9.   Approval of a contract with Pathway Enterprises for janitorial services
10. Declaration and authorization to dispose of surplus property in a sealed bid auction
11. Liquor license application for James Mills, dba Caldera Brewing Co.
12. Liquor license application for Robert Lindauer, dba Paddy Brannan’s Irish Pub
13. An amendment to the IGA for a code assistance grant for the Unified Development Code
Councilor Marsh pulled Consent Agenda items #3 and #8 for further discussion.  She noted the IGA (Intergovernmental Agreement) with Jackson County for Emergency Notification System went through March 14, 2016 instead of 2015.
Engineering Services Manager Scott Fleury clarified funds left over from the contract for the miscellaneous concrete project could go towards engineered projects associated with the miscellaneous concrete or to engineering on TSP (Transportation System Plan) projects budgeted for 2016-2019.  The bid process awarded new projects to contractors as separate contracts.  The standard amount of bonds for bids was 10%.
Councilor Rosenthal/Voisin m/s to approved Consent Agenda items. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.
1.      Second reading of an ordinance titled, “An ordinance granting a timetable extension to the Verde Village Subdivision development agreement”
Mayor Stromberg noted a conversation with the applicants regarding outdated energy items they had agreed on with the initial development.  City Attorney Dave Lohman confirmed the conversation did not constitute Exparte contact, as it had no bearing on the decision currently before Council.
Councilor Marsh/Slattery m/s to approve Ordinance #3082.  DISCUSSION: Staff confirmed nine items recommended by the Planning Commission were included in the development agreement.
Roll Call Vote: Councilor Voisin, Marsh, Morris, Slattery, and Rosenthal, YES. Motion passed.
1.   Public hearing and approval of a resolution establishing rates for the Ashland Municipal Airport and repealing Resolution 2012-18
Engineering Services Manager Scott Fleury explained the Airport Commission proposed rate increases for hangar rentals and tie down fees.  Ground lease agreements adjusted automatically on the CPIU (Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers) annually.  The Airport Commission recommended raising rental rates $5 per month for hangar leases and increasing the monthly tie down fee by $1.  The Airport maintained a contingency fund and an End Fund Balance.
Public Hearing Open: 7:32 p.m.
Public Hearing Closed: 7:32 p.m.
Councilor Slattery/Marsh m/s to approve Resolution #2013-16. Roll Call Vote: Councilor Slattery, Morris, Voisin, Rosenthal, and Marsh, YES. Motion passed.
2.   Public Hearing to consider adopting the annual budget and approval of:
Council delayed discussion and approval of the resolutions associated with the Annual Budget to the next Council meeting.
Administrative Services Director Lee Tuneberg noted a change to the budget in the Water Fund for the Fire Resiliency Program.  Instead of $175,000, it should have shown $350,000 for the biennium.  The amount would come from the Ending Fund Balance but the total amount would remain the same for appropriations in the Forest Lands Management.  The other items were Public Works projects not complete as originally projected.
Stefani Seffinger/Chair of the Park Commission/448 Taylor Street/Explained that normally she would address the importance of the Parks and Recreation Commission retaining control of the Parks and Recreation budget and operations.  Instead, she thanked the Council for the work they did and the citizens who supported the parks with their time and dedication.  It was more important now to look to the future where the Parks and Recreation Commission and the Council worked effectively together. 
Mary Wooding/727 Park Street/Opposed taking money from the Parks and Recreation Department and hoped the next budget would reinstate the 50%.
Abi Maghamfar/Ashland Lodging Association/451 N Main Street/Represented the Ashland Lodging Association and thanked the Council and Budget Committee for funding the position of Code Enforcement Officer.  The position would help bring over 100 illegal vacation rental operations into compliance and the Ashland Lodging Association volunteered to assist in that process.  The Association asked Council to have a quarterly report on the status of illegal vacation homes.
Rick Landt/468 Helman Street/Thought the budget was contrary to the City Charter and Council policy. It was a radical departure from the development of previous budgets for the Parks and Recreation Department and not in the best interest of the citizenry.  It was unclear to him why the change was necessary other than a 1997 state law made it possible.  The Parks Commission’s sole responsibilities were the preservation and enhancement of the parks and recreation system.  He would work with the public and the City Council/Parks and Recreation Commission ad hoc Committee to continue to shed light on this issue and work for a permanent solution to find dependable sufficient funding for city parks.
Councilor Voisin/Slattery m/s to approve First Reading of the Ordinance, “An ordinance levying taxes for the period of July 1, 2013 to and including June 30, 2014, such taxes in the sum of $10,519,347 upon all the real and personal property subject to assessment and levy within the corporate limits of the City of Ashland, Jackson County, Oregon” and place on agenda for second reading. DISCUSSION: Councilor Voisin explained the ordinance needed approval of First Reading to remain in compliance.  Councilor Rosenthal supported the budget except for the change and methodology pertaining to the allocation for the Parks and Recreation Department and would not support the motion.   The mission and vision outlined in the City Charter for the parks systems was still pertinent and significant.  He was concerned in 5-10 years there might not be adequate funding for the parks system.
Councilor Marsh noted the process over the last year regarding the Parks and Recreation budget concerned several people.  There was an opportunity through the City Council/Parks and Recreation Commission ad hoc Committee to start fresh and discuss how to fund parks in the future.  Councilor Slattery commented there would be serious funding issues and challenges over the next 10-20 years and thought every department needed review.  The City Council/Parks and Recreation Commission ad hoc Committee and the work the Council and the Parks and Recreation were doing collaboratively would result in a better plan that worked.
Councilor Lemhouse arrived at 7:55 p.m.
Roll Call Vote: Councilor Slattery, Morris, Voisin, Marsh, and Lemhouse, YES; Councilor Rosenthal NO. Motion passed 5-1.
1.   Approval of a resolution titled, “A resolution authorizing Mayor and City Administrator signature of an affiliation agreement Asante, Ashland Community Hospital, the Ashland Community Hospital Foundation and the City of Ashland and authorizing the City Administrator to sign documents necessary to close the affiliation transaction.”
City Administrator Dave Kanner provided background on the affiliation agreement and noted some slight changes to the Letter of Intent.  One was a provision that if Asante failed to operate Ashland Community Hospital (ACH) as a general hospital under Oregon Administrative Rule, the City had the right to request the hospital revert to the City’s sole ownership with a payment of $8,000,000.  What was new was Asante could reduce the $8,000,000 to amounts equal to contributions in excess of on average $900,000 per year paid into the ACH benefit pension plan.  The reduction would not exceed $2,000,000 and no payment at all if Asante satisfied the outstanding balance of the Umqua bank note the hospital took out in 2004.  Also in the first three years, Asante would not cause any distributions of real property from ACH to Asante or any other entity.
Councilor Slattery/Lemhouse m/s to approve Resolution #2013-15. DISCUSSION:          Councilor Lemhouse appreciated the effort Councilor Slattery and everyone involved put into the affiliation agreement process.  Councilor Morris also expressed appreciation for the effort.  Mr. Kanner explained clarifications to the affiliation agreement better defined capital improvements and tied it to Section 5.2.1 of the GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Principles).
Asante President and CEO Roy Vinyard noted the negotiation process was complex and involved four parties, and commented that everyone kept the best interest of the community in the forefront.  He was looking forward to rebuilding some of the services.
Councilor Marsh commented on good faith and Asante’s commitment to provide the community with high quality services that reflected community values.  Councilor Voisin would support the motion because the City was giving the buildings and land to Asante in exchange for 15 years of maintaining ACH as a general hospital.  Councilor Slattery clarified the City was not giving anything away and Asante was paying $8,000,000 loan, picking up a $16,000,000 pension fund and $10,000,000 of capital improvements.  Councilor Voisin reiterated the importance of the community getting a general hospital for the next 15 years.  Roll Call Vote: Councilor Morris, Lemhouse, Slattery, Marsh, Voisin, and Rosenthal, YES. Motion passed.
3.   Public hearing and approval of a resolution titled, “A resolution adopting a miscellaneous fees and charges document and repealing prior fee resolution 2012-21”
Administrative Services Director Lee Tuneberg explained changes to miscellaneous fees and charges would go into effect July 1, 2013.  Often departments did not charge enough for the services provided and fee increases were inflationary.  Community Development Director Bill Molnar added the Planning Commission did not review fee amounts and staff based community development increases on changes in the CPI (Consumer Price Index).  Community Development did not have an official policy regarding fees or waiving them.  A study in 2000 indicated community development fees should cover approximately 75% of the department’s resources that went to current development.  The Ashland Municipal Code codified waiving fees on projects that met affordability criteria.
Mr. Tuneberg noted due to infrequent use, it was hard to calculate revenue from fees.  He went on to clarify substantive changes to the fees would come back the following year or staff would go to Council directly.  Staff would add fire and rescue recovery costs to the document.
Public Hearing Open: 8:36 p.m.
Public Hearing Closed: 8:36 p.m.
Councilor Voisin/Morris m/s to approve Resolution #2013-17.  Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.
2.   Economic Development Strategy, phase two implementation plan
Management Analyst Adam Hanks addressed 3.3 Create coordinated economic development information and marketing plan to maximize public communication tools and explained how it combined a variety of actions to one area for the business community.  The concept was having a resource that fit different stages of development.  Sub-actions would include a snapshot of the local economy using business license registration, total employees, residential, commercial construction permits, home occupation permits, and Transient Occupancy Tax (TOT) collections.
Council wanted to include an AFN (Ashland Fiber Network) strategy or priority action in the plan and have the specific action for the current year be completion of the 5-year plan.  City Administrator Dave Kanner thought they could add wording to 6.4 to read, “Pursue the expansion of a State E-commerce Zone for Ashland, and complete the 5-year AFN Business Plan.”  He also suggested setting aside funds to help AFN market its service to potential E-commerce Zone developers.
Council was interested in revisiting 6.1 Evaluate the use of urban renewal districts to spur private reinvestment in targets commercial and employment areas of Ashland and directed staff to change the status to ongoing and schedule a Study Session to discuss the matter further.
Mr. Kanner explained there was approximately $150,000 budgeted for the economic development program from the TOT.  Of the $150,000, $45,000 was set aside to cover a portion of Mr. Hanks’ salary.  The remaining $105,000 would fund economic development projects:
·         $30,000 was set aside of short videos to promote innovation and recruit businesses to Ashland
·         $20,000 for a business portal program online
·         $20,000 for commercial property inventory
·         $10,000 to revive the Green Business program
·         $10,000 for the Jobs Commission
·         $15,000 for the City’s contribution to the Festival of Lights instead of having the money come from the Electric Department
Mayor Stromberg noted it might cost more than $10,000 to establish a Job Commission and suggested the Electric Department fund the Festival of Lights one more year.  Mr. Kanner explained the budget included the $105,000 for economic development projects, but did not specify individual projects.  Council could adopt the updated Economic Development Strategy and discuss how to spend the $105,000 at a separate meeting.
Council wanted to quantify the Economic Development Strategy to show how the City benefited from the $150,000 spent annually.  Some of Council was not convinced it was worthwhile investing in a portal and thought a better intermediary goal for the next year was establishing a “Doing Business in Ashland” page on the city website with connections to community partners, license and permit information and business associations.
Mayor Stromberg clarified his memo of proposed additions to the Economic Development Strategy.  He wanted to recognize the significance and importance of having good schools in the economic development strategy.  He also wanted to include how parks fit into the economic development strategy as well.  Finally, he wanted to create interaction between innovative and creative people to form something the entire community could access.
Councilor Lemhouse/Rosenthal m/s to accept the Economic Development Strategy Phase Two Implementation Plan Update as amended by Council as an appendix to the original Economic Development Strategy adopted by City Council in July 2011.  Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.
Staff would set up two meetings, a future Study Session on urban renewal and either a Study Session or Council meeting for economic strategy budget items and possibly have Sandra Slattery from the Ashland Chamber of Commerce attend to discuss the portal.
3.   Update to financial management policies and account methods in consideration of a biennial budget.
Administrative Services Director Lee Tuneberg noted there were nine changes several critical.   The first change was the review of required ending fund balance/carry forward minimums and calculations needed with a biennium budget.  This revision proposes lowering the General Fund Ending Fund Balance to 10%, to reflect two year’s worth of property taxes receipted in as operating income.
Council moved the agenda item to a Study Session for further discussion and clarification.
City Administrator Dave Kanner commented that one of the applicants submitting a proposal for the Help Center that Council would review during the June 17, 2013 Study Session wanted to provide a multi-media presentation regarding their proposal. 
Councilor Voisin/Rosenthal m/s that the two applicants for the RFP for the Help Center have ten minutes to present their applications to the Council. DISCUSSION:  Councilor Rosenthal thought ten minutes each was reasonable and the topic was important.  Councilor Morris would not support the motion.  It was too late in the process for presentations and the meeting should be a question and answer session.  Councilor Slattery was not opposed to 5-minute presentations.  Roll Call Vote: Councilor Voisin, Rosenthal, and Marsh, YES; Councilor Morris, Lemhouse, and Slattery, NO.  Mayor Stromberg broke the tie with a NO vote.  Motion failed 3-4.
Councilor Slattery/Marsh m/s give the applicants 5-minutes.  Roll Call Vote:  Councilor Voisin, Lemhouse, Slattery, Rosenthal, and Marsh, YES; Councilor Morris, NO.  Motion passed 5-1.
Meeting adjourned at 9:40 p.m.
______________________________                        ____________________________
Barbara Christensen, City Recorder                 John Stromberg, Mayor

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