Agendas and Minutes

City Council (View All)

Continued Meeting

Monday, February 08, 2010



Siskiyou Room, 51 Winburn Way

February 8, 2010




Mayor Stromberg called the meeting to order at 7:15 p.m. in the Siskiyou Room.



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



1.   Will Council approve the FY11 Capital Improvement Program (CIP) project list, the overall FY11-16 CIP in Concept, and the FY11 Capital Equipment Plan?

Public Works Director Mike Faught provided a presentation that covered changes to the CIP: 

FY11 CIP - Proposed Transportation Project List

·         Changed to reflect the $25,000 for the TSP Update for this year, $216,000 for FY11.


FY11 CIP - Proposed Street Imp LID Project List

·         Change corrected Will Dodge Way overlay/reconstruction at $75,000 for FY11.

·         Sheridan St & Schofield St LID was correct on the large CIP but did not transfer to FY11.

Staff explained Will Dodge Way was a high crime area and how a run down appearance contributes to bad behavior.  Property owners made improvements to the area and the City agreed to do an overlay.  Police Chief Holderness confirmed the alley is one of the biggest issues the Police Department has in the core of the city for assaults and drunkenness.  Council consensus approved the total cost for transportation. 



·         Federal Aid to Municipalities (FAM) – will not receive $25,000 grant. 

Staff clarified the $90,000 listed under “Other” on the CIP 2010-2016 Construction Years was the soft match for time spent managing the project and inspections. Council consensus agreed with the Airport costs.    


FY11 CIP - Proposed Water Fund Project List

·        Hosler Dam Safety Analysis - total cost $250,000 with the Electric Department funding $125,000 of the total.

·         Water Curtailment/TID Pump Station Improvements - 100% funded by fees.


If Council approved the Crowson II Reservoir, staff recommended a 6% water rate increase in addition to an operational rate increase.


Staff explained the City currently has a 2million gallon storage deficiency and the new reservoir would meet that deficit.  During peak demands, it is difficult getting the water into the system causing operational and reserve water issues.  The City would still need the Crowson II Reservoir if it moved forward with the Talent Ashland Phoenix (TAP) waterline.  TAP would provide 1.5-3million gallons a day as an emergency back up.  TAP was currently not funded.  Additionally, the Water Master Plan will not change the need for a second reservoir or produce other options.  Council discussed the burden of a potential rate increase on the citizenry and the higher expenses of delaying the project further.  Council decided to put the Crowson II Reservoir project through the budget process and make a decision once the rate impact is determined.   


FY11 CIP - Proposed Wastewater & Storm Drain Fund Project Lists

·         Wastewater Treatment Plant Membrane Sections Replacement

Staff clarified they purchased four membrane cassettes in 2007 and that transaction had no affect on current dollar amounts needed for membrane replacement.  The current membranes were at the end of their lifecycle and needed replacing in order to meet effluent discharge requirements.  The Master Plan will eventually evaluate alternatives for membranes.


Council shared concerns on raising wastewater rates after passing the Food and Meals Tax on the premise rates would not increase and agreed to retain membrane replacement in the CIP. 


Storm Drain Iowa Street Program

Staff explained the Storm Drain Master Plan will provide appropriate rates and capital projects but currently there was no money in this fund.


FY11 CIP - Proposed AFN/Telecom/IT Project Lists

·         Community Website Portal

Staff clarified the $22,000 allocation for the Community website portal allowed the City to share information with the community via merging new media.  The Budget process will refine project proposals.  


Information Technology

·         Desktop & Laptop Planned Replacements (25% Annually)

Council thought the allocation for desktop and laptop replacement was higher than actual costs but was willing to address amounts during the budget process. 


FY11 CIP - Proposed Facilities & Parks Project Lists    

Administration – City Facilities

·         City Facility Upgrades & Maintenance

·         Service Center Roof Replacement

Council discussed City Hall renovations and roof replacement and decided to extend City Hall projects one year and retain the roof replacement for the Service Center in the CIP. 


Parks and Recreation

The Parks and Recreation Department will sell bonds on the Food & Beverage receipts and retain a capacity for land purchases or projects.  Council consensus supported the Parks & Recreation project list.


FY11 Capital Equipment Purchase Plan

Staff removed police car #555.


Councilor Voisin/Navickas m/s to accept the staff report and approve the following three items: a)  the proposed FY11 Projects for Budget Purposes, b)  the FY11 Capital Equipment Plan, and c) the FY11-16 Overall CIP for Planning Purposes as amended.  Roll Call Vote:  Councilor Voisin, Navickas, Lemhouse, Jackson, Silbiger, Chapman, YES. Motion passed.


2.   Will Council approve a resolution revising operating Ending Fund Balance (EFB) targets for certain funds and authorize budgeting increased Contingencies in certain funds?

Lee Tuneberg explained the proposal and options staff recommended was based on fiscal stability, internal controls and policies.  Unrestricted Ending Fund Balance (EFB) is targets or minimums held and used the following year.  The four options recommended were:

1.       Approving the recommendations but implementing the changes on a fund-by-fund basis using unanticipated surpluses.

2.       Approving increases the recommendations but phasing any increases in on a fund-by-fund basis and limiting any rate of fee adjustments needed to reach the new targets to 1% per year.

3.       Approving increase EFB targets with the timing of implementation as Council determines.

4.       Formally adopt the existing EFB targets with no changes

Mr. Tuneberg provided an overview of the Fund Balance Worksheet, proposals on the General Fund, Airport Fund, Capital Improvements Fund, the Insurance Fund and the Parks and Recreation Fund and noted a larger use of Contingencies due to tightening budgets.  He personally would prioritize funds with Parks and Recreation first, then Debt, the Insurance Fund and Capital Improvement Fund because they go farther in the financial prospectus and overall stabilize operations more than other funds. 


Lynn Thompson/125 North Main Street/Was concerned on how to spend additional revenue, if any, noting the City might not choose to fund a savings account and that it should be a judgment reserved for the budget process and made in the context of an overall budget examination.


Staff explained the plan to achieve $3million was to grow the EFB by reducing the following year’s budget or increasing revenues depending on the fund.  The phasing-in process would occur over a period of years.  Funding reserves was similar to funding Ending Fund Balances.  Staff recommended Council eventually create a policy in the General Fund that if the EFB was 20% or greater, the surplus above that amount should go into reserves.


Council for the most part thought the EFB targets were prudent and sound, a little too conservative but good to set as a target. Some preferred being less aggressive, implementing changes fund by fund, cutting spending to save money, not raising rates or delaying the decision until the recession ended.  They discussed having staff bring back a fund-by-fund strategy for implementation.   


City Attorney Richard Appicello noted a correction to the last full sentence deleting “…read by title only in accordance with Ashland Municipal Code 2.04.090…” with the corrected sentence:  “This resolution was duly PASSED and ADOPTED this _______ day of February, 2010.”


Councilor Navickas motion to approve the recommendations phasing in increases in a fund-by-fund basis and limiting any rate of fee adjustments needed to reach the new targets to 1% per year.”


Motion died due to lack of a second.


Councilor Silbiger/Jackson m/s move to accept staff recommendation on Ending Fund Balance (EFB) targets and have staff on a fund-by-fund basis look at phasing them in over zero to 5 years. 


Councilor Silbiger withdrew the motion with Councilor Jackson’s approval.


Councilor Silbiger/Jackson m/s Resolution #2010-05 establishing Target Ending Fund Balances as presented.  Roll Call Vote: Councilor Jackson, Navickas, Chapman, Lemhouse and Silbiger, YES; Councilor Voisin, NO.  Motion passed 5-1.


Councilor Silbiger/Lemhouse ms direct staff to bring back a proposal to meet those targeted Ending Fund Balances fund-by-fund for up to zero to five years.  DISCUSSION:  Councilor Silbiger thought even though it might be unachievable in five-years, it was a responsible attempt and could change. 


Ms. Thompson asked to participate in the discussion.  Council discussed the appropriateness of withdrawing a motion to hear public input and decided to allow Miss Thompson to speak.


Councilor Silbiger withdrew the motion with Councilor Lemhouse’s approval.


Ms. Thompson noted Council had previously passed a resolution that adopted Ending Fund Balance Targets for the next fiscal year and that made the current motion regarding phasing inconsistent.  Staff clarified the discussion was about targets, Council was aware they might not be achievable in the budget, and the phases were the strategy on how to attempt to achieve them.



Councilor Silbiger/Lemhouse m/s direct staff to bring back a proposal to meet those targeted Ending Fund Balances fund-by-fund for up to zero to five years.  DISCUSSION:  Councilor Navickas thought putting a cap on tax increases was better than putting a cap on time.  Councilor Voisin preferred establishing a form of trigger instead of zero-5 years and would not support the motion.  Councilor Lemhouse supported the motion and thought zero-five years was prudent and would not support aggressive tax increases for Ending Fund Balances.  Councilor Silbiger clarified these were proposals only and added he would not support tax increases to meet Ending Fund Balances either.  Staff explained CIP money would come from facility fees in the operating division of the CIP.  It is currently an internal service fund with an operating and capital division.  Raising the EFB target will smooth internal service charges and lessen variability in the charges departments pay.  Mayor Stromberg noted the strategies would come before Council for consideration and this was an attempt towards fiscal responsibility.  Councilor Navickas thought there should be limitations and reiterated a cap on tax increases.  Councilor Voisin would not support the motion based on the upcoming rate increases for Water, Waste Management and possibly Electric. 


Councilor Navickas motion to amend the motion to limit rate and fee adjustments to 1% per year with the

5-year plan.  Motion died due to lack of second.


Roll Call Vote on original motion: Councilor Jackson, Chapman, Lemhouse and Silbiger, YES; Councilor Navickas and Voisin, NO. Motion passed 4-2.



1.   Should the Council approve Second Reading of an Ordinance amending Council Rules Chapter 2.04.090, 2.04.100 and 2.04.110 to add Council Rules relating to commissions and liaisons”?

City Attorney Richard Appicello read the ordinance title aloud.


Councilor Jackson/Chapman m/s to approve Ordinance #3002.  Roll Call Vote: Councilor Silbiger, Voisin, Jackson, Navickas, Chapman and Lemhouse, YES.  Motion passed.


2.   Should the Council approve Second Reading of an Ordinance providing for uniform policies and operating procedures for advisory commissions, committees and boards?

City Attorney Richard Appicello read the ordinance title aloud and referenced a memo sent earlier adding the following:  Section 22 new Section 15.04.260. D. Unpaid Penalties:

1.      Failure to pay an administrative penalty imposed pursuant to this code within thirty (30) days after the penalty becomes final shall constitute a Class A violation of this code.

2.      If an administrative civil penalty is imposed on a responsible person because of a violation of any provision of this code resulting from prohibited use or activity on real property, and the penalty remains unpaid 30 days after such penalty become final, the building official shall assess against the property the full amount of the unpaid fine and shall enter such an assessment as a lien in the docket of City liens.

3.       In addition, failure to pay an administrative civil penalty imposed pursuant to this code shall be grounds for withholding issuance of requested permits or licenses, as well as issuance of a stop work order, revocation or suspension of any issued permits or certificates of occupancy.

The City Recorder as authorized would correct typographical errors.


Council Jackson/Silbiger m/s amend Section 10 2.24.010 Established Membership by adding one sentence:  “To qualify the Historic Commission as a Certified Local Government (CLG) Commission the members should meet the professional qualifications under State Historic Preservation Office requirements.”   DISCUSSION:  Councilor Jackson noted the language would meet State guidelines and help Ashland qualify for State Preservation Office Grants.  City Administrator Martha Bennett suggested removing the words “at least some of” to eliminate ambiguity.  Councilor Jackson and Silbiger agreed.  Councilor Navickas suggested changing “…at least some…” to “…at least one…”  Councilor Jackson clarified the language purposely does not make it mandatory or include a specific number because many cities do not have the expertise.  Roll Call Vote: Councilor Silbiger, Voisin, Jackson, Lemhouse, Navickas and Chapman, YES.  Motion passes.


Councilor Chapman/Silbiger m/s to amend 2.10.040 Quorum-and Effect of Lack Thereof and replace the first sentence with the following: “A meeting of greater than half of the regular members constitutes a quorum.”  Roll Call Vote: Councilor Silbiger, Voisin, Jackson, Lemhouse, Navickas and Chapman, YES.  Motion passes.


Councilor Silbiger/Navickas m/s to approve Ordinance #3003 as amended and including the changes 15.04.260. D. as read.  Roll Call Vote: Councilor Chapman, Navickas, Lemhouse, Jackson, Voisin and Silbiger, YES.  Motion passed.


Councilor Navickas/Voisin m/s to continue the remaining items on the agenda to the next regular meeting.  Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.


3.   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?


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?


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?


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 postponed to the next regular meeting.


4.   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?

Item postponed to the next regular meeting.



Meeting was adjourned at 9:24 p.m.




John Stromberg, Mayor

Barbara Christensen, City Recorder                                                     


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