MINUTES FOR THE CONTINUED MEETING
ASHLAND CITY Council
May 8, 2002 - 11:30 a.m.
Civic Center Council Chambers, 1175 E. Main Street
CALL TO ORDER
Mayor DeBoer called the meeting to order at 11:33 a.m. in the Civic Center Council Chambers.
Councilors Jackson, Morrison, and Hearn were present. Laws and Reid were absent. Hartzell arrived at 11:44 a.m.
NEW AND MISCELANEOUS BUSINESS
1. Report on Health (Social) and Human Services Plan.
Finance Director Lee Tuneberg gave brief report on the Health and Human Services Plan. He requested the Council's consideration on any further direction for staff. The goals of the plan are as follows: 1) provide a comprehensive and coordinated system of services to address people in need; 2) ensure that the allocation of program funding is fair, objective, and consistent; and 3) ensure that the funded programs directly address changing priorities and are administered in an effective and cost effective manner.
The Council discussed various aspects of the report and noted that the plan identifies a number of areas where additional emphasis and support can be given at a future time. The Council can request priorities in some cases.
Hartzell noted her willingness to work with various groups to effect some changes. City Administrator, Greg Scoles, noted that no action was required on this item.
2. Electric Rate Discussion.
Electric and Communications Director Dick Wanderscheid explained that the budget, which has been presented to the Budget Committee, assumed raising electric rates 6% and surcharge costs 6%. He stated that even though wholesale rates would increase, the amount of the increase is unknown. In addition, staff has proposed eliminating the current declining block rate in the commercial electric rate structure and implementing an increasing block rate structure. This would bring it into more parity with residential rates. He noted that the increasing block rate structure gives users pricing incentive to pursue conservation and would ensure that large users pay a more reasonable share of the cost. The rate is designed as revenue neutral as possible, with smaller users benefiting more than larger users, and with the middle users staying the same.
The Council discussed aspects of the report, including block rate structure, rate and cost increases, rate relief, low-income assistance, the green power program, rate implementation cycles, and conservation. The Council directed staff to bring back a bulleted report outlining and explaining cost increases.
3. Election of Council Chair for 2002.
Hearn/Hartzell m/s to nominate Morrison for Council Chair. Voice Vote: All ayes. Motion passed.
ORDINANCES, RESOLUTIONS AND CONTRACTS:
1. First reading by title only of "An Ordinance Adding Youth Liaison Members to the Bicycle and Pedestrian, Historic, Traffic Safety, and Tree Commissions."
Mayor requested that the Historic Commission be removed from the ordinance due to technical requirements of the position. Jackson disagreed, noting a high school senior who did a project for the Chamber of Commerce. Morrison disagreed with the non-voting status of the youth liaisons, and suggested the issue be taken up at another time.
Item was postponed to a future study session or Council agenda.
2. Reading by Title only of "A Resolution Adding Youth Liaison Members to the Conservation, Forest Lands and Housing Commissions and the Senior Program Board."
Item was postponed to future study session or Council agenda.
OTHER BUSINESS FROM Council MEMBERS
1. Discussion of City's current fund balance policy requested by Councilors Cate Hartzell and Don Laws.
The Council directed staff to add this item to a future Budget Committee agenda.
Meeting was adjourned at 12:16 p.m.
Jan Brunelle, Assistant to City Recorder