Agendas and Minutes

City Council (View All)

Regular Meeting

Tuesday, June 02, 2015


June 2, 2015
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, Lemhouse, Seffinger, Rosenthal, and Marsh were present.
Mayor Stromberg announced the City completed the annual appointment process for the various Commissions, Committees, and Boards but there were still vacancies on the following Commissions: Airport, Forest Lands, Housing & Human Services, Public Arts, Transportation, Tree, and Wildfire Mitigation.
The minutes of the Executive Session of May 18, 2015 were approved as presented.  Councilor Seffinger noted a change in the minutes of the Business Meeting of May 19, 2015 to the last sentence on page 2. That “…there was not a fee…” should be “…there was no change in the fee…” The assistant to the City Recorder would listen to the meeting and verify the change.  The minutes were approved.
1.   Annual presentation by the Band Board
Bruce Dresser introduced himself as a trumpet played in the Ashland City Band, Tim McCartney and Dave Hoxie explained they played the trombone.  Director Don Bieghler provided additional background on band members, their contributions, the history of city bands, and the important role city bands played in the community.  He announced weekly concerts in Lithia Park would start June 18, 2015 at 7:00 p.m. and continue through August.  The Ashland City Band was currently looking for funding to attend the 50th anniversary of Guanajuato as Ashland’s sister city.
2.   Update regarding the 2015 Drought
Public Works Director Mike Faught explained the reservoir was full and the City intended to keep it full for as long as possible.  Currently the community was using 3.4 million gallons per day (mgd).  The east and west forks had more water this year than last year.   As the summer progressed and the City could no longer meet the demand using Ashland Creek, it would introduce Talent Irrigation District (TID) water.  This would involve the City shutting off 86 TID users for the second year.   A citizen living in that area contacted the City to say it was unfair to shut off their TID water right.  Mr. Faught had received suggestions from the community to use Talent Ashland Phoenix Intertie (TAP) water initially then TID.  Using TID, the same as last year would cost approximately $199,416.  Running TAP and not the TID would cost $253,840 for a difference of $54,400.  TID water rights for the 86 individuals affected were $165 each per year for a total of $14,200.  Alternately, the City needed to run TAP for a month to ensure it functioned properly.  Staff sought direction on using TAP first then TID or staying with TID and using TAP if needed.
Water Conservation Specialist Julie Smitherman explained the multi departmental water curtailment committee would meet soon to discuss next steps.  Staff would update the drought webpage, set up Use Water Wisely signs, and place ads in the Sneak Preview, Ashland Directory, and Locals Guide.  This year the City would run conservation ads at the movie theaters.  The Ashland Chamber of Commerce distributed informational cards on water usage to hotels and restaurants and highlighted Ashland water supply in their Living and Doing Business in Ashland guide.  Staff scheduled presentations throughout the summer.  The City offered lawn replacement programs, irrigation evaluations, aerators, showerheads, and moisture meters free of charge to City utility customers. 
Mr. Faught would schedule a meeting with the 86 TID users regarding the process.  Council would discuss whether to use TID or TAP water first at the next Council meeting.
The Mayor’s proclamation of June 14, 2015 as Flag Day was read aloud.
Joseph Kauth/1 Corral Lane/Addressed science, history, responsibility, and policy, noting the country took care of other homelands but not their own.  Science was compassion and required understanding.  He expressed concern with practices that occurred in the past and thought they could be related to each other.  Forests were contentious issues and needed care because the habitat it provided was significant.  He thought recent weather events in Texas and Mexico connected to weather events that had occurred in the South Asian Sea.  Another issue was the rapid growth of a noxious weed. 
Huelz Gutcheon/2253 Hwy 99/Explained the information people received was sketchy, distorted, and people were being taken for a ride.  This distortion of information extended to City staff as well.  He questioned how people discovered what was real.  The best way to tell if someone was actually speaking the truth was discern opinion from fact, gather, and verify data.  Currently the world was experiencing a planetary emergency.  The truth was apparent, facts were abundant, and there was no time for delay.  The best way to learn planet change solutions was to surround ourselves with those solutions and become energy experts.  It would take time.  He encouraged everyone to take their time, trust, and verify.
1.   Liquor license application for Duke Taffy dba Southern Oregon Growlers, LLC
2.   Appointment of Roger Pearce to the Planning Commission
3.   Jackson County supervising physician support agreement
4.   Declaration and authorization to dispose of surplus property in a sealed bid auction
5.   Mayoral appointment of Rich Rosenthal as Council liaison to the Amigo Club
Councilor Rosenthal/Morris m/s to approve Consent Agenda items. Voice Vote: ALL AYES.  Motion passed.
1.   Confirmation of Mayoral appointment of Tighe O’Meara as Police Chief
Mayor Stromberg explained Tighe O'Meara was currently in Boston MA for training.  City Administrator Dave Kanner explained the City conducted a national broad based search specifically targeted to women and minorities. Staff received 42 applications from twenty different states and Chief O’Meara remained the best candidate for the position.     
Councilor Voisin/Lemhouse m/s confirmation of the Mayor’s appointment of Tighe O’Meara as Police Chief.  Roll Call Vote: Councilor Voisin, Morris, Lemhouse, Seffinger, Rosenthal, and Marsh, YES.  Motion passed.
Mr. Kanner added the City would host a community gathering June 24, 2015 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in Council Chamber for the public to meet the new Police Chief. 
2.   Adoption of the City’s self-insured health plan for the plan year July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2016
City Administrator Dave Kanner explained the only changes to the health plan this year were required through Oregon legislation and the Affordable Care Act.   The Affordable Care Act changes were administrative and not substantive.  Oregon insurance law had many changes with only one affecting the City’s health plan regarding pregnant women with diabetes.
Councilor Seffinger/Lemhouse m/s to approve the 2015-2016 City of Ashland self-insured health benefit plan.  DISCUSSION:  Councilor Seffinger thought it was a great plan that deserved to move forward.  Roll Call Vote:  Councilor Marsh, Seffinger, Rosenthal, Voisin, Morris, and Lemhouse, YES.  Motion passed
3.   Community Climate and Energy Action Plan ad hoc Committee formation request
Councilor m/s to authorize Mayor Stromberg to form an ad hoc Climate Action & Energy Plan Oversight Committee.  DISCUSSION:
Conservation Commission member Marnie Koopman explained the communitywide Climate Action & Energy Plan process entailed twelve steps over a two year period with one year of planning and one year of continued outreach and implementation.  The Geo-Institute and Rogue Climate would host a large kick-off event as part of the climate energy and action planning process that would occur fall 2016.
Talent community members were working with Rogue Climate and the Lake County Resource initiative to host a community energy-planning workshop this summer and invited the Conservation Commission to attend.  Southern Oregon Climate Action Now (SOCAN) would have an educational event on climate change October 15, 2015. 
She addressed the timeline in the Council packet and explained the color-coding, target dates, and deadlines.  The Commission sought Council input on the process.  Commissioner Koopman clarified the timeline included buffers and there was the option to extend deadlines if needed.
City Administrator Dave Kanner noted the motion authorized the Mayor to create the ad hoc committee not to approve the timeline.  He suggested creating the oversight committee and having them review the timeline.  Mayor Stromberg agreed it was not appropriate to authorize the timeline at this point.  Additionally the City Charter had the Mayor appoint ad hoc committee members.  Commissioner Koopman explained the Conservation Commission was planning to do some outreach to determine who might be appropriate for the ad hoc committee.  The Commission would form a leadership committee for the kickoff event.  She went on to clarify the Commission was seeking advice on the timeline only.
Council suggested the Conservation Commission provide periodic reports on the status of the plan.
Councilor Rosenthal/Voisin m/s to authorize Mayor Stromberg to form an ad hoc Climate Action and Energy Plan Oversight Committee.  DISCUSSION:  Councilor Rosenthal thought this was the leading edge of something great for the community and thanked Management Analyst Adam Hanks for his efforts.  Councilor Voisin added the Conservation Commission had done a good job.  Councilor Lemhouse was looking forward to the formation of the committee and the work it would have within the community.  Councilor Marsh wanted the planning process to move as quickly as possible.  She liked the timeline noting the Commission could adjust it as needed.  Councilor Seffinger appreciated the plan and hoped it would make people feel hopeful.  Councilor Morris supported the plan and hoped it was done in a timely manner.  Roll Call Vote:  Councilor Morris, Seffinger, Marsh, Voisin, Lemhouse, and Rosenthal, YES.  Motion passed.
1.   Approval of a resolution titled, “A resolution approving the jurisdictional transfer of Peachy Road”
Public Works Director Mike Faught recommended the jurisdictional transfer.  In 2007, Jackson County received a Congestion Mitigation Air Quality (CMAQ) grant to pave Peachey Road from Walker Avenue to Hillview Drive then transfer jurisdiction from Jackson County to the City.  The five other areas of roads under Jackson County jurisdiction listed in the Council Communication were outside city limits or the urban growth boundary.  CMAQ grants were competitive and difficult to obtain. 
Councilor Voisin/Marsh m/s to approve Resolution #2015-16.  Roll Call Vote: Councilor Voisin, Morris, Lemhouse, Seffinger, Rosenthal, and Marsh, YES.  Motion passed.
2.   Second reading by title only of an ordinance titled, “An ordinance amending Chapter 11.28 to authorize City Council to establish presumptive parking violation fines by resolution”
City Attorney Dave Lohman explained during first reading of the ordinance Council removed several comprehensive changes to address them later in the year.  The proposed ordinance would allow Council to set presumptive parking fines by resolution.  He noted a correction to the Council Communication that passing the ordinance would retain the language regarding the $50 fine for the fifth and all subsequent violations.
Councilor Lemhouse thought Section 11.28.110 (C) allowing the Court to issue a warrant for arrest was a serious escalation.  Mr. Lohman noted the language was old, not enforced, and would look into it further.
Councilor Morris/Lemhouse m/s to approve the second reading by title only of an ordinance titled, “An Ordinance Amending Chapter 11.28 to Authorize City Council to Establish Presumptive Parking Violation Fines by Resolution.”  DISCUSSION:  Councilor Marsh would not support the motion.  It was inappropriate to begin enforcing laws not previously enforced when Council would review the parking fine process soon.  Councilor Rosenthal would vote against the motion as well.  There was a Study Session August 17, 2015 and he thought Council could start the process review following the meeting. 
Roll Call Vote: Councilor Lemhouse, Voisin, Morris, YES.  Councilor Rosenthal, Marsh, and Seffinger, NO.  Mayor Stromberg broke the tie with a NO vote.  Motion failed 4-3.
Mayor Stromberg noted City Attorney Dave Lohman was going to the United Kingdom for the month of June.  Another announcement was Jackson County Human Services was looking for a facility to house eight public health professionals to provide counseling to people eligible for Medicaid or the Oregon Health plan.  City Administrator Dave Kanner was not sure if the services were limited to Oregon Health Plan patients. 
Councilor Lemhouse announced school was ending soon and for the community to be more aware of the children.  He acknowledged the school system in Ashland and how many students attended Ivy League schools after graduation.
Councilor Voisin invited the community to attend the Southern Oregon University (SOU) graduation Saturday June 13, 2015, 9:00 a.m. at the Raider Stadium.
Councilor Marsh attended the Habitat for Humanity celebration of the first critical house repair in Ashland.  Forty volunteers worked on a home over the past few months that belonged to a single mother of six.  Funds for the renovation came from the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) the City awarded to Habitat for Humanity.  As the liaison to the Housing and Human Services Commission, she complimented the process the Commission used to make recommendations on the social services funds.
Meeting adjourned at 8:20 p.m.
John Stromberg, Mayor
Dana Smith, Assistant to the City Recorder                 

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