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City Council Meeting Minutes
September 12, 2011
1. Roll Call
Mayor Roe called to order the Roseville City Council regular meeting at approximately 6:00 pm and welcomed everyone. (Voting and Seating Order for September: Willmus; Pust; McGehee; Johnson; and Roe). City Attorney Charlie Bartholdi was also present.
2. Approve Agenda
Mayor Roe suggested removal of Consent Item 7.g entitled, “Adopt a Resolution Acknowledging the City’s Intent to Issue Fire Station Capital Improvement Bonds;” for action immediately following Agenda Item 12.a entitled, “Consider Funding Options for New Fire Station Project.”
Willmus moved, Johnson seconded, approval of the agenda as amended.
Ayes: Willmus; Pust; McGehee; Johnson; and Roe.
3. Public Comment
Mayor Roe called for public comment by members of the audience on any non-agenda items. No one appeared to speak at this time.
5. Council Communications, Reports and Announcements
Mayor Roe announced several upcoming meetings scheduled for this week, including:
· Human Rights Commission: Forum hosted by the City’s Human Rights Commission and its Neighborhood Engagement Task Force on September 14, 2011 to discuss opinions and how neighborhoods can become more involved in City governance (additional information available by contacting the Task Force Chair Gary Grefenberg at 651/645-6161 or City Communications Specialist Carolyn Curti at City Hall 651/492-7026.
· North Suburban Communications Commission: Cable Franchise Renewal process for the ten (10) cities involved includes numerous workshops from September 13 – 15, 2011, to gather community needs specifically related to media in the community and how that will be translated in the franchise renewal agreements with Comcast. While workshops are divided among interest groups, the public is welcome to attend any and all of them. Additional information available at CTV15.org/focus groups and for registration. For additional information, contact CTV (located at 2670 Arthur Street in Roseville) or call City Hall at 651/792-7515.
· Beyond the Yellow Ribbon area support group of seven (7) communities in Ramsey County, for coordination of efforts to support military families. The group regularly meets the third Thursday of each month at the Roseville City Hall. Additional information available at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Councilmember McGehee announced that the Roseville Citizens League would be hosting a discussion and presentation regarding organized trash hauling at 7:00 pm on Thursday, September 15, 2011, at the Fairview Community Center.
6. Recognitions, Donations, Communications
a. Proclamation of Hispanic Heritage Month
Mayor Roe read a proclamation and recognized September 15 as the anniversary of independence for five (5) Latin American Countries; and designation in 1988 by the United States Congress of September 15 – October 15 annually as National Hispanic Heritage Month. Mayor Road honored contributions of Hispanic Americans and their cultural heritage in the Roseville community.
McGehee moved, Johnson seconded, recognition of September 15 – October 15, 2011 as Hispanic Heritage Month; and invited all members of the community to celebrate that Hispanic heritage and their contributions to Roseville.
6. Approve Minutes
a. Approve Minutes of August 22, 2011 Meeting
Comments and corrections to draft minutes had been submitted by the City Council prior to tonight’s meeting and those revisions were incorporated into the draft presented in the Council packet.
Pust moved, Johnson seconded, approval of the minutes of the August 22, 2011 meeting as submitted.
7. Approve Consent Agenda
There were no additional changes to the Consent Agenda than those previously noted. At the request of Mayor Roe, City Manager Bill Malinen briefly reviewed those items being considered under the Consent Agenda.
a. Approve Payments
Willmus moved, Johnson seconded, approval of the following claims and payments as presented.
63754 – 63988
b. Approve Business Licenses
Willmus moved, Johnson seconded, approval of business license applications for the period of one (1) year, for those applicants as follows:
Type of License
Jo Anne Lorenz at Stephen’s Salon
1125 County Road B
c. Approve One Day Gambling Permit for Roseville Fire Auxiliary
City Manager Malinen noted a correction, that this event was scheduled at the VFW, not Fire Station #1.
Willmus moved, Johnson seconded, approval of an on-site gambling permit for the annual Roseville Fire Department Auxiliary Booya on October 2, 2011 at 2701 N Lexington Avenue; as amended to the VFW.
d. Approve General Purchases and Sale of Surplus Items Exceeding $5,000
Councilmember McGehee noted the Police Department’s mobile connection license renewal and cost-sharing advantages among those having joint powers agreements with the City of Roseville.
Willmus moved, Johnson seconded, approval of the submitted list of general purchases and contracts for services presented as follows:
Aercor Wireless, Inc.
PD Mobile Connection
Parks & Rec
Diseased and Hazardous
Spray Injection Paving for
Televise Sanitary & Storm Sewer Mains
e. Approve Construction Agreement with City of Falcon Heights for Fairview Pathway
Willmus moved, Johnson seconded, approval of the Fairview Pathway Project (a/k/a NE Suburban Campus Connector Bike/Pedestrian Project) Construction Agreement (Attachment A) with the City of Falcon Heights.
f. Adopt a Resolution to Accept Work Completed, Authorize Final Payment, and Commence the One-Year Warranty Period on the West Snelling Drive Sidewalk Project
Willmus moved, Johnson seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 10925 (Attachment A) entitled, “Final Contract Acceptance West Snelling Service Drive Sidewalk Project;” starting the one-year warranty and authorizing final payment of $29,478.83, as certified by the City Engineer (Attachment B).
h. Approve Cooperative Maintenance Agreement for Lake Bennett Public Fishing Pier
Willmus moved, Johnson seconded, authorizing the Mayor and City Manager to execute a Land Use, Operations and Maintenance Cooperative Agreement (Attachment A) between the State of Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) and the City of Roseville for replacement of the public fishing pier on Lake Bennett in Central Park.
i. Consider Authorizing Short Term Closure of Wheeler Street at County Road D
Willmus moved, Johnson seconded, authorizing the short-term closure of Wheeler Street at County Road D to prevent cut-through construction traffic; and for further study of long-term impacts of such a closure.
j. Approve Memorandum of Understanding and Related Documents for Sienna Green Phase II Project
City Manager Malinen brought to the City Council’s attention a bench handout, attached hereto and made a part hereof, provided by City Attorney Bartholdi, providing several alternative motions related to this item and more succinctly conveying the action being requested.
City Attorney Bartholdi recommended approval of Alternate II.
Willmus moved, Johnson seconded, approval of the detailed documents included and identified as Attachments A through N of the Request for Council Action (RCA) dated September 12, 2011, in the form shown; subject to modifications approved by the City Manager and the City’s legal counsel.
8. Consider Items Removed from Consent
9. General Ordinances for Adoption
a. Consider an Ordinance Amending Chapter 311.03, Limiting the Number of Pawn Broker Licenses
Police Chief Rick Mathwig briefly summarized the Request for Council Action (RCA) dated September 12, 2011; and the recommended language drafted by the City Attorney and recommended by staff for inclusion in Chapter 311.03 of Roseville City Code.
Councilmember McGehee questioned the language related to the existing licenses having first preference, and whether that tied the City’s hands if a licensee proved problematic or undesirable; and why this was licensed under a Conditional Use rather than being tied to an existing location.
Chief Mathwig responded that, from his perspective, the existing pawn broker in the City was beyond qualified and had been more than cooperative with the Police Department.
City Attorney Bartholdi opined that the proposed language would in no way hinder the City from considering a new application or denial for reasonable cause, while providing existing license holders some preference. Mr. Bartholdi advised that there were constitutional issues in limiting a prospective location; and that additional discussions and further modifications may be indicated following additional discussions and research among the City’s Community Development Department staff and the City Attorney’s office.
Councilmembers McGehee and Johnson expressed their individual appreciation for staff’s time and research in bringing this recommendation forward.
Mayor Roe called for public comment; however, no one appeared to speak for or against.
Mayor Roe concurred that further discussion on how to address pawn shops in the City’s Zoning Code was warranted; and asked that staff look at other types of similar businesses during that next step in this process.
Johnson moved, Willmus seconded, enactment of Ordinance No. 1414___ (Attachment A) entitled, “An Ordinance Amending Title Three, Section 311.03, to Limit the Number of Pawn Broker Licenses in the City.”
b. Consider a Resolution Adopting the Twin Lakes Sub-Area I Regulating Plan and Consider an Ordinance (and Ordinance Summary) Amending Section 1005.07 to Incorporate the Twin Lakes Sub Area I Regulating Plan
Community Development Director Patrick Trudgeon and City Planner Thomas Paschke were available for this presentation.
Community Development Director Patrick Trudgeon briefly summarized the context for the proposed Regulating Plan and staff’s recommendation for this important document, as detailed in the RCA dated September 12, 201; and specifically in Sections 1.2 and 1.3 of the RCA. Mr. Trudgeon reviewed mitigation efforts as further outlined in the RCA, as well as incorporation of suggestions provided during previous discussions with the City Council and the public, both at the Planning Commission and City Council levels.
City Planner Thomas Paschke reviewed three specific City Council concerns brought forward at the July 18, 2011 City Council meeting, and modifications made in the Plan to address those concerns.
Build-to Lines (graphic included in the ordinance)
Mr. Paschke advised that additional clarification had been added related to lengths of build-to lines, with urban and greenway frontages addressed for each specific parcel through identification of the length and actual percentages required.
Mr. Paschke referenced Sections 1.8, 1.10 and 1.11 in the RCA speaking to staff efforts to resolve previously-stated concerns, including adding language related to eight foot (8’) minimum width trails, green space on either side, and incorporation of certain landscaping requirements. Mr. Paschke noted that, related to AUAR mitigation efforts for wildlife corridors, in staff’s research and discussions with the Department of Natural Resources (DNR), they advised that pedestrian connections could achieve and double for wildlife migration goals.
Park Dedication/Moderate Oak Forest Preservation
Mr. Paschke referenced page 2 of the displayed map and two (2) areas identified near and adjacent to Langton Lake Park, and specific protection and preservation addressed in the AUAR for those areas by providing an additional fifteen foot (15’) buffer area for the park in those areas.
Mr. Paschke noted that Mayor Roe, in e-mail discussions with staff following delivery of the Council Agenda packet materials, had proposed more concise language for build to areas on flexible frontage sites (Section 1005.07, at line 161) from that included in the DRAFT ordinance. A copy of Mayor Roe’s e-mail dated Monday, September 12, 2011, is attached hereto and made a part hereof.
Councilmember Pust sought clarification and staff confirmed the proposed buffer areas for Langton Lake Park and limitations for any activities in that fifteen foot (15’) buffer area requiring it to stay natural with no building and only grading as necessary and as approved by the City.
Councilmember Pust sought clarification and staff confirmed that City Authority required a subdivision by a developer for those parcels fronting Twin Lakes Parkway, with park dedication (land or cash in lieu of) for those areas as indicated on the map, anticipating that the Parks and Recreation Commission most likely would prefer land dedication to protect those Oak forests.
Councilmember Pust questioned if current ownership sufficient to require a park dedication for those parcels as opposed to other parcels in that area.
Mr. Trudgeon responded that, for the most part yes; however, there was one smaller piece (identified as “B” on the map) that was owned by a separate entity, but the rest was owned by one entity. Mr. Trudgeon advised that the particular property owner owned some additional land in the Twin Lakes Redevelopment Area, making further negotiations available for consideration. Mr. Trudgeon reminded that those park dedications, as part of the land use approval process for any redevelopment, would need approval by the City Council, upon being vetted and recommendations brought forward by the City’s Parks and Recreation Commission and as applicable for each parcel and development proposal. Mr. Trudgeon advised that staff wanted this information available upfront for potential developers.
Councilmember Pust questioned the intent of the eight foot (8’) pathways doubling as wildlife corridors; with Mr. Paschke responding that the dedicated green space or green corridor was 25-30’ wide and would sufficiently address urban wildlife corridors.
Mr. Trudgeon noted that this would address keeping open space between buildings as well, not just striping a parking lot to serve as a pathway or corridor; with that dedicated 25’ corridor stipulating that nothing could be built there with the exception of the trail itself. Staff noted that each pedestrian connection was identified on the regulating map; while allowing for some flexibility for developers. Councilmember Pust suggested that, if not shown specifically on the map it may be forgotten; with staff clarifying that the restrictions were clearly identified in the ordinance text, as well as in graphic form.
Councilmember Willmus sought verification from Mayor Roe that he was amenable to staff’s revised language to his original proposed language as referenced in the e-mail as previously noted; with Mayor Roe responding affirmatively
Councilmember McGehee sought clarification on the native cover types, their conversion and/or mitigation (page 3 of the RCA, line 93).
Mr. Trudgeon reviewed the limited areas with native cover within the Twin Lakes area, noting that even if there was open and green space, it didn’t necessarily include native cover types, with the exception in those areas with moderate Oak forest; reiterating that those items would be specifically addressed as part of a development’s park dedication approval process and negotiations; with the developer required, at the discretion of the City’s Parks and Recreation Commission, to submit a plan to replace any native cover or provide another alternative to address any tree loss. Mr. Trudgeon provided specific examples.
While being supportive in general to this revised ordinance, Councilmember McGehee expressed ongoing concerns that the community goals and input were not being addressed in these later iterations, as it had been in the original Master Plan, using parking as an example (Item B, No. 24 in the original Twin lakes Master Plan) requiring that the developer provide a minimum of 15% green space.
Mr. Trudgeon clarified that the proposed ordinance allowed for up to 85% impervious space that remained consistent with the original Twin Lakes Master Plan.
Councilmember McGehee opined that redevelopment in parking areas should be required to provide nice trees in parking lot islands; and referenced the recent presentation at the Public Works, Environment and Transportation Commission related to green areas and tree sustainability in parking areas.
Mr. Paschke advised that the City’s landscape ordinance identified requirements for green space in curb islands, and it was not necessary to include it in this ordinance.
Councilmember McGehee requested, and Mr. Trudgeon responded, that staff would address curved natural and sloping to avoid trees being stunted as typically found in parking lot plantings. Councilmember McGehee further requested that staff incorporate year round native planting as part of development plans, and encourage water conservation. Mr. Trudgeon advised that staff was attempting to incorporated rain gardens and other such amenities for sustainability.
Councilmember McGehee opined that the City had a regulating map and an allocation plan; however, nothing addressed uses on a particular parcel; even though that had been a major piece of the original Twin Lakes Master Plan and had received significant citizen input. Councilmember McGehee read a portion of the introductory language of the Master Plan addressing community survey results and the interest of the community in not having more retail development I the community (page 9 of the Master Plan). Councilmember McGehee opined that, to not address that issue seemed to create an unnecessary problem due to the allocation plan, since large scale retail invited a lot of traffic. Councilmember McGehee suggested that mitigation could be regulated in another manner.
Mayor Roe refocused the discussion on the Regulating Plan currently before the City Council.
Mayor Roe sought clarification on why the resolution and ordinance were necessary when both seemed to be accomplishing the same thing.
City Attorney Bartholdi responded that the reason was to solidify the basis for and the reason for adopting the ordinance; to supplement and support the City Council’s decision. Mr. Bartholdi recommended that the City adopt the resolution; and recommended the process for the three (3) different actions requested tonight as follows:
· Adopt the Ordinance (Suggested City Council Action 4.2, lines 289-291)
· Adopt the Resolution (Suggested City Council Action 4.1, line 288); and
· Adopt the Ordinance Summary (Suggested City Council Action 4.3, line 292)
Mayor Roe sought any public comment; however, no one appeared to speak for or against.
Johnson moved, Pust seconded, enactment of Ordinance No. 1415 (Attachment E) entitled, “An Ordinance Amending Selected Text of Section 1005.02 (Design Standards) and Section 1005.07 (Community Mixed-Use District) of Title 10 “Zoning Code” of the Roseville City Code;” as amended.
Mayor Roe offered a MOTION TO AMEND the Ordinance and language of Attachment E to substitute and insert language as provided in the bench handout, consisting of the e-mail as previously referenced during this discussion.
The makers of the motion were agreeable to this revised language, with staff in concurrence, and the motion was amended to insert the following language immediately after line 161 of the DRAFT ordinance:
“On Flexible Frontage sites located at or near pedestrian corridors or roadway intersections, where building placement is not to be in the build-to area, the City will require additional public amenities/enhancements including, but not limited to, seating areas, fountains or other water features, art, or other items, to be placed in the build-to area, as approved by the Community Development Department.”
Councilmember McGehee questioned why these items were being addressed in separate documents; with Mr. Trudgeon advising that this was the first step, to be followed by more specific concentration on the overlay district.
Councilmember questioned where the specific uses would be addressed if not in the regulating map or allocation plan.
Mr. Trudgeon advised that the Community Mixed Use (CMU) Zoning and its “Use Chart” specifically identified the uses; as well as being addressed in other areas of City Code for mitigation efforts and whether or not there was a direct linkage to a specific use.
Councilmember McGehee opined that in the CMU Zoning was specific to the Twin Lakes Redevelopment Area; with Mr. Paschke responding that it was currently the only CMU District unless future requests come forward for another area of the community; noting that such a request would require separate action of the City Council and development and approval of another regulating map specific to that area.
Mr. Paschke cautioned on the need to ensure that the language in the Comprehensive Plan and CMU Zoning were consistent and not in conflict with each other by specifically addressing uses in this document.
Councilmember McGehee opined that this may set up the allocation plan for future litigation; and questioned when the allocation plan would be reviewed by the City Council; further opining that if it was not a separate document it wouldn’t be so difficult to monitor.
Mayor Roe refocused discussion on the current action before the City Council.
Roll Call (Original Motion as Amended)
Willmus moved, Johnson seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 10926 (Attachment D) entitled, “A Resolution Adopting the Twin Lakes Sub-Area I Regulating Plan;” as amended with revised language in the 8/15/11 DRAFT, to be included and codified by staff and the City Attorney as appropriate.
Johnson moved, Willmus seconded, enactment of Ordinance Summary No. 1415 (Attachment F) entitled, “An Ordinance Amending Title 10 “Zoning Ordinance,” Section 1005.07B, Community Mixed-Use District, (CMU) of the Roseville City Code.”
Roll Call (Super Majority Vote)
a. Joint Meeting with Police Civil Service Commission
Representatives of the Commission included Chair Don Drackert and Zoe Jenkins; with Member Jim Campbell sending his apologies for being unable to attend tonight’s joint meeting.
Chair Drackert reviewed meetings held during 2011 to-date, with meetings mandated once annually and then as needed; and noted the extensive work of the Commission just last year in completing the rules and regulations. Chair Drackert advised that the Commission had received no calls for assistance so far this year.
At their February of 2011 meeting, Chair Drackert advised that the Commission had discussed the selection process for the Lieutenant’s positions, and had recommended approval of the top three (3) candidates from the Police Department.
Chair Drackert recognized the extensive work performed by Member Campbell in developing the rules and regulations over an approximate one year process, and noted that they were available on the City’s website. While such a document is optional under State Statute, Chair Drackert advised that the Commission felt it was important to adopt an formalize such a document to clearly establish a setting for Human Resource and Personnel Policies specific to the Police Department and serving as a tool under the auspices of Minnesota State Statute.
Councilmember Johnson congratulated Chair Drackert on his election as Chair, and Commissioner Jenkins for her appointment to the Commission; and thanked him and other Commissioners for their service; and commended them for the resulting Rules document, opining that it was a very good document.
Chair Drackert reiterated his recognition of Commissioner Jim Campbell in his research of other communities and their Police Chiefs and staff; and his leadership in putting the Rule document together.
Chair Drackert noted that over the last year, the Commission had been very involved in many aspects of the Police Department and in observing various interviews; and expressed his personal and the Commission’s favorable impression with the quality of the Roseville Police Department, from its management and leadership down to the officers working on the line. Chair Drackert opined that the Department staff was very professional and competent; and that the Rules document had been found to be very helpful for the Department and individual officers to-date.
Mayor Roe thanked Chair Drackert for recognizing the involvement and efforts of Commissioner Campbell; and also noted the work of former Commissioners on the document as well. Personally, and on behalf of the City Council and the community, Mayor Roe expressed appreciation for each former and current Commissioner. Mayor Roe expressed his pleasure in hearing the direct involvement of the Commission with Police Department management and officers; opining that such a relationship would serve the City well going forward.
Chair Drackert noted that, prior to his involvement with the Commission, his past career included Human Resource duties with the Air Force, who had an excellent personnel program. While this document was more condensed, Chair Drackert opined that it aligned itself very well to his past experience with such a document; and should provide the Police Chief with a tool to maintain and retain a great police force for the City of Roseville.
14. Public Hearings
15. Business Items (Action Items)
a. Consider Funding Options for New Fire Station Project
Fire Chief Tim O’Neill, Fire Marshal John Loftus, and Shift Commander David Brosnahan were available for this presentation; as detailed in the RCA dated September 12, 2011. Chief O’Neill briefly summarized previous presentations to the City Council and subsequent recommendation by the Task Force for consideration to a one-station concept on the City Hall campus. Chief O’Neill noted that the work of the Needs Committee continued as they plan to work with the construction manager and interview architectural teams.
Chief O’Neill noted that the City Council had previously requested that the group return to them with options for how they intended to pay for this construction; and that those options and recommendations were detailed in the RCA, including steps in the process for issuing Capital Improvement Bonds for a term of (15) years guided toward a target amount not-to-exceed $8 million. Chief O’Neill recognized member of the Fire Department and the Needs Committee present in tonight’s audience to lend their support to this request.
Mayor Roe noted that tonight’s requested action was similar to that taken several weeks ago for the Parks proposal, outlining the general amount being requested for approval and recommended source of funding.
Chief O’Neill concurred with Mayor Roe on the process, clarifying that the Parks and Recreation was proposed as Abatement Bonds, while this request was for Capital Improvement Bonds, in accordance with Minnesota State Statute 475.521.
Mayor Roe sought public comment, with no one appearing for or against.
Councilmember Pust thanked the Needs Committee and Chief O’Neill for their great work on this great project. However, Councilmember Pust asked the same question that she had put forth to the Parks and Recreation Commission: “Why are we not going to the taxpayers for a vote?”
Chief O’Neill responded that it was basically a timing issue and the eagerness of the Team to continue the process and move forward at this point. Chief O’Neill addressed the following issues in response to Councilmember Pust’s question:
· The condition of existing buildings is dire, and by delaying the process, it would put the City even further behind in addressing the health of its firefighters. Chief O’Neill advised that even now, the department was bringing Station 2 back on line and moving out of Station 1, which continued to show significant mold issues. Chief O’Neill opined that the quicker the process proceeded, the sooner the health and safety issues of the City’s firefighters would be addressed.
· Chief O’Neill noted the very favorable bond rates at this time; and the concern in gambling that they would stay that low for another year if the project was delayed for a referendum vote
· Chief O’Neill noted that construction costs were now lower than they had been over the decade; and the Construction Management Team was hoping to have conceptual drawings completed in December of 2011 or January of 2012, allowing for a spring of 2012 bid for subcontractors; that could potentially save 10% in construction costs.
· Chief O’Neill expressed his confidence that this proposal would pass with a referendum; and it if didn’t, he expressed his concern as to where that would leave the department given the dire condition of the buildings; leaving everyone in a quandary of “now what;” and his personal preference to avoid such a situation.
Councilmember Pust, setting aside Chief O’Neill’s last point, opined that the reasons outlined by Chief O’Neill alluded to reasons why taxpayers should vote for a referendum; and questioned hypothetically what would happen if the City Council authorized moving forward at this time versus waiting a year and asking the taxpayers the same question.
Chief O’Neill advised that he was fully supportive of community input; and noted that the department had spent the last fourteen (14) months seeking community input to ensure that the support existed for the proposal. By a year from now, Chief O’Neill anticipated that a building shell would be enclosed and construction well underway to provide a move in date within approximately twenty-two (22) months.
Councilmember Pust, in addressing Chief O’Neill’s fourth bullet point, opined that if the referendum failed, the department would be in a world of hurt; however, she noted that the City would still have a Fire Department and need housing for it to remain productive, efficient and functional; and a determination would be needed at that time for retaining its Fire Department. At that time, Councilmember Pust noted that it would again require the City Council to determine where the money was coming from. Councilmember Pust opined that this was a long-term commitment and required a big re-arrangement of funding for the City.
Chief O’Neill noted that the requested action was committing the City Council to financing the project; and if a referendum indicated there was no support, the money would have to come from another source. Chief O’Neill noted that, if that was the result, he was unsure of the legal or operational ramifications.
When asked for a legal opinion, City Attorney Bartholdi advised that he would defer to the City’s bond counsel for that opinion.
Councilmember Pust expressed her concern, as she had similarly stated when the Parks and Recreation Commission bond issue had come forward, that the Fire Department not leave tonight’s meeting thinking that she didn’t want a new fire station. In recognizing the Committee many attempts to seek and receive public input, Councilmember Pust advised that she was receiving public input as well; and she had yet to find one person not recognizing the need for a new fire station. However, Councilmember Pust noted that a lot of the comments were recognizing the commitment being sought from taxpayers: $19 million for Parks; $8 million for a Fire Station; increased Capital Improvement needs and fees; and other items in already addressed during budget discussions. Councilmember Pust clarified that her concern is that the City Council needed to determine what to do on these huge ticket items, out of respect for its taxpayers.
For the record, Pust moved, McGehee seconded, authorizing a public referendum to seek taxpayer approval to support bond issue for a new Fire Station, with the terms as detailed in the RCA dated September 12, 2011.
Mayor Roe asked what the deadline was to get a referendum on the 2012 budget; with City Manager Malinen responding that the deadline had been August of 2011.
Ayes: Pust and McGehee.
Nays: Willmus; Johnson and Roe.
Councilmember McGehee spoke in support of the need for a fire station; however, she opined that it had never been her intent to move forward on the City Hall campus site. Councilmember McGehee opined that it had been her impression that the next phase would be a third party evaluation of other sites, and a more thorough assessment of whether the City Hall campus site was the preferred site. Councilmember McGehee stated that she had issues with the City Hall campus site, such as geothermal and others; as well as this site not being suitable for access throughout the community, and opined that the Macy’s Home Store site would be a better site due to speed of access to Highway 36. Councilmember McGehee expressed her discomfort in not having a third party evaluation of all proposed sites.
Mayor Roe asked that Councilmember McGehee focus comments on the specific action before the City Council or make a motion.
Councilmember McGehee asked if the Committee would be considering other sites and come forward with any other options.
Chief O’Neill advised that, when the Building Committee came before the City Council in March of 2011, they recommended this site, after having reviewed other potential options. Chief O’Neill advised that the Macy’s site was not currently available; and advised that when MnDOT constructs the Highway 36 underpass, there would be the elimination of some ramps in that area, and noted that it had been determined that the Macy’s site would not be a good option given that future reconstruction scenario. Chief O’Neill advised that, during review of potential sites, the City Hall campus site had come out on top, based in part on the City already owning the land, and its fit to the proposed project, with no additional land acquisition required. Chief O’Neill advised that access throughout the City had been given thorough consideration, in addition to response corridor from Victoria to Hamline north of highway 36. Chief O’Neill noted that there was not much available land for a 2.5 acre need, excluding park or school-owned land. Chief O’Neill noted that impacts to neighborhoods was also a consideration; and advised that everyone may want a fire station close by, they didn’t necessarily want it in their back yard. Chief O’Neill noted that the City Hall campus site was already used as a station, and impacts to the surrounding neighborhood would be minimal. Chief O’Neill advised that it was not the intent to have a third party review of the site, as the architectural team and construction manager would thoroughly vet the City Hall campus site to ensure that the building was right on that site, was right for the community, and would provide available future growth. If that was not indicated, Chief O’Neill advised that a “Plan B” would need to be resorted to, and that such an option had been retained and would be part of the next steps in the process.
Councilmember McGehee opined that she didn’t want a station to be overbuilt without having a referendum; and noted ongoing discussions about incorporating into a regional fire district, and how that would impact the current proposal; and asked if the City Council would be consulted again on this issue.
Chief O’Neill noted that the proposal was to consolidate three (3) existing stations into one (1) station; with that station being larger than any of the current buildings, but allowing for flexibility within that building to address the future of fire service, which would probably become a regional effort, with fewer fire stations needed, but requiring that they be larger. Chief O’Neill assured Councilmembers that each step going forward would come back before the City Council (e.g. hiring an architectural firm; demolition of the existing fire station; design stage). Chief O’Neill advised that it was preferred that the station be community and City Council supported; and that preference dictated their interest in continuing to seek public and City Council input and provide opportunities to share in the process with the community retain the excitement for the project.
Councilmember McGehee questioned if this would include public open houses for residents to see plans and provide input.
Chief O’Neill responded affirmatively, advising that this was the exiting part of the project for the Fire Department to ensure buy-in from the public and community; noting that it was their station, and advised that the first of many events would include a farewell to the existing Station No. 1 prior to its demolition, with former and retired firefighters invited, with those plans under the auspices of the Committee, whose role over the last fourteen (14) months has been to continue making sure that a new facility fit well within the needs and preferences of the community.
Councilmember McGehee questioned the current use of Fire Station No. 1; with Chief O’Neill advising that other than using the apparatus bay portion for firefighters, the mold was too extensive to want too much exposure.
In response to other space allotment questions of Councilmember McGehee, Mayor Roe referred her to that information already provided in documents from the Study and Advisory groups.
Johnson moved, Willmus seconded, authorizing the City Manager and Fire Department to begin the process of issuing “Capital Improvement Bonds” in an amount not to exceed $8 million; for the purpose of building a new fire state; and directing staff to schedule a public hearing and provide public notice in accordance with requirements pertaining to the issuance of “Capital Improvement Bonds.”
Councilmember Johnson offered his respect for the opinions expressed by Councilmembers Pust and McGehee. However, Councilmember Johnson advised that fundamentally, he was looking at this from a different perspective, noting that this story was much the same as that heard several weeks ago for the Parks Abatement Bond request, representing another victim of underfunding by the City over the last 20-25 years and funds not being allocated to the Fire Department and Parks and Recreation capital needs. As a comparison, Councilmember Johnson noted that he would not seek a referendum to repair the City’s roads or infrastructure; and he saw no need for this request to require voter approval, since it was improving or replacing an existing facility, but simply maintaining what the City already had. Councilmember Johnson opined that geothermal was not an issue, as it already existing on campus; and further opined that the City Hall campus was a good location for this central station; and he supported a unified City campus with a Fire station. Councilmember Johnson opined that the status quo in Roseville for too long has not been to properly support its Capital Improvement Program (CIP): and that, as we go forward, it was up to the current City Council to challenge that status quo, further opining that this was exactly how the City was proceeding. Councilmember Johnson recognized that, yes, it was costly, but it was their responsibility to take care of what they had; and he was taking that challenge in doing that. Councilmember Johnson thanked those in the audience for their attendance to show their support for this request.
Councilmember Willmus thanked the Fire Department and its Committees for getting the project to this point; and opined that the proposal was being responsive to taxpayers, and saved land acquisition costs, as well as freeing up other properties to become tax-generating in the future.
Councilmember Pust echoed thanks to the group; and opined that it was a great plan and it was in the right location; and expressed her enthusiasm for the geothermal portion and the overall project as an investment in the future. Councilmember Pust clarified that her only objection is not seeking taxpayer approval for it, even though she support the project in general, and if it went to referendum, she would offer her enthusiastic support and assistance.
Councilmember McGehee strongly expressed her responsibility to taxpayers; and concurred with the comments of Councilmember Johnson on her embarrassment that the City has not supported its staff and maintaining existing public assets. While expressing her apologies to the Fire Department staff for the moldy conditions, Councilmember McGehee opined that, unlike parks, this was not a pay-as-you-go project; and she felt strongly that this was a bond referendum question. Councilmember McGehee clarified that she supported the project, just not a bond issue without a public referendum.
Councilmember Johnson clarified his position and distinction on how a referendum should and should not be used: that he would not approve a bond issue without a referendum for any new facility (e.g. a community center); however, he supported bond financing for maintaining or replacing existing facilities as should have already been prepared for in the City’s CIP.
Mayor Roe advised that he was very sympathetic and usually supportive of referendums for borrowing; however, in this situation as well as the Parks bonding request, he came down on the side of what prior City Council’s had not addressed in maintaining the City’s CIP needs and resources. If the money had been managed appropriately in the past, Mayor Roe opined that funds would already be in place to move forward with these capital needs without having a large impact to City taxpayers. Mayor Roe opined that the question came back to being that the longer the City waited to solve the problems, the more costly they became. If there was time this year to seek a public referendum, Mayor Roe advised that he would be very supportive of doing so; however, given the timing, he opined that he wasn’t going to hold up the project another year, and would support it as it needed to be done.
Councilmember Pust noted that she had asked to have this discussion way before the August referendum deadline; however, she opined that it had not been brought forward for a vote until the deadline had passed. While recognizing that there appeared to be a consensus on the Council that bonding was the route to go, Councilmember Pust advised that her intent in asking sooner was to determine if there were other available options; and advised that her intent in suggesting that the project be held up was based on her concerns about the cumulative effect of everything being attempted this year.
A Bench Handout was provided from Georgeann R. Hall, 385 Transit Avenue in support of direct bonding for the new fire station, attached hereto and made a part hereof.
No one else appeared to speak for or against the proposed project.
Ayes: Willmus; Johnson; and Roe.
Adopt Resolution Acknowledging the City’s Intent to Issue Fire Station Capital Improvement Bonds (Former Consent Item 7.g)
Mayor Roe briefly reviewed the intent of this request, formerly included on tonight’s consent agenda; and as detailed in the RCA dated September 12, 2011.
Johnson moved, Willmus seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 10927 (Attachment A) entitled, “Resolution Establishing Procedures Relating to Compliance with Reimbursement Bond Regulations Under the Internal Revenue Code;” declaring the City’s intent to issue capital improvement bonds to reimburse itself for the costs associated with the construction of a new fire station.
b. Receive the Estimated Debt Service Costs for the Fire Station and Park Bonds
Finance Director Chris Miller provided a brief summary of the information provided in the staff report dated September 12, 2011. Mr. Miller advised that the information provided was for the benefit of the community and the City Council, with final details remaining pending at this time to illustrate impacts to property owners for the various terms outlined.
Fire Station Projection (Attachment A)
Discussion included median value home assumptions; twenty (20) year versus fifteen (15) year terms for bond issues; a conservative estimated interest rate of 4.25%; existing and anticipated market conditions for a bond issue; public hearing and notice process to be followed; the City’s favorable bond rating; and existing debt service for the previous City Hall campus projects.
Councilmember Willmus spoke in support of a fifteen (15) year term versus a twenty (20) year term, as a much better choice for overall debt service, and opined that he would be reluctant to issue for bonds for a term greater than fifteen (15) years.
At the request of Councilmember Willmus, Finance Director Miller advised that there was a ten (10) year call feature built in for the existing City Hall campus bond issue; and that those bonds were issued in 2003.
At the request of Councilmember Willmus, Mr. Miller advised that he would provide information on the pay off if the previous City Hall bonds were called in; and possible revenue source options to do so.
Mayor Roe requested that staff’s information include the increased debt service impact and average increase to a typical single-family homeowner for a fifteen (15) year term at the same projected interest rate; specifically in the 2012/2013 budget years.
Councilmember Pust asked how the term was determined, and whether it was dependent on the market at the time of issue.
Mr. Miller advised that staff would work with its bond counsel, and examples of how the market place was responding and showing a preference for terms; and that they would test the market before returning to the City Council with their recommendation on the term. Mr. Miller reminded Councilmembers that it was their ultimate decision; and the longer the bond term was spread out, the less burden it had on the community; however, he cautioned about extending the bond issues beyond the useful life of a building; and suggested that, from a financial strategy perspective, such a scenario be avoided.
Park Bond Projection (Attachment B)
Finance Director Miller noted that it had yet to be determined how best to structure this bond issue: whether $19 million all at once, or through a phrased process; and anticipated that staff and the City’s bond counsel would have a recommendation to the City Council in the next few weeks.
Councilmember Willmus noted, as an illustration of his previous point, the cost savings of $2.5 for a fifteen (15) year versus a twenty (20) year issue.
Mr. Miller concurred, noting that there would be less cost for interest over the life of the bond for a shorter term. Mr. Miller advised that this information was available on the City’s website, as well as at City Hall.
c. Consider Resolutions Related to Adopting the Preliminary 2012-2013 Not-to-Exceed Levy
Mayor Roe clarified that tonight’s action was for a preliminary, not-to-exceed levy, but the budget could be revised. Mayor Roe further clarified that it was prudent to note that, at the time this preliminary levy was being set, public hearings on approved bond issues had yet to occur; and suggested that the City Council take this into consideration in their deliberations as they considered a not-to-exceed levy.
Finance Director Miller clarified that, if the City Council chose to issue the bonds in 2011, the levy could be increased above and beyond what was set tonight. However, in looking at the timing for a bond issue, Mr. Miller advised that he wasn’t sure if the issue would be ready to proceed until 2012; and more than likely, he anticipated that the repayment structure would come on line in 2013 and be addressed during next year’s 2013 budget discussions.
Councilmember Johnson clarified that there was no concern or bearing on taking possession of bond money and using it in 2012; with Mr. Miller concurring.
Mayor Roe clarified that Mr. Miller’s recommendation was to not include the bond issues in the levy at this point, to which Mr. Miller responded affirmatively.
At the request Mayor Roe, City Manager Malinen briefly summarized the RCA dated September 12, 2011 and requested action, based on actions taken to-date during budget discussions and rankings. Mr. Malinen advised that this included his most recent recommendation to the City Council, based on state changes in eliminating the Market Value Homestead Credit (MVHC) to split those proceeds to restore some of the reductions and eliminations in the previous iteration based on a City Council directive for a 3.4% levy increase. Mr. Malinen opined that it was prudent to retain that proposed level of increase for the preliminary, not-to-exceed levy as the City Council and staff continued to refine the final budget over the next three (3) months prior to adoption of the final budget and levy in December. Mr. Malinen recognized the concerns of the City Council for funding the Capital Improvement Program (CIP) and Park Improvement Program (PIP); and opined that by retaining the higher levy increase, and combined with his previous recommendations, it would provide a sufficient cushion until it was determined how to best address those issues.
Councilmember Pust noted that, on line 2 of the memorandum (lines 43-50), she was having difficulty tracking numbers from past iterations; opining that she was sure the public was having trouble tracking them as well; and asked that Finance Director Miller provide a quick rundown for each specific line.
Finance Director Miller noted the shift of $463,775 (line 49) from Operations to Capital. At the request of Councilmember Pust, Mr. Miller clarified the $623,695 (line 45), less the additional $180,000 plus to return, identified as part of the CIP process for a sustainable CIP to get back on schedule for vehicle, equipment and facility needs.
Councilmember Pust asked if this was more than recommended by the CIP Task Force; with Mr. Miller responding negatively; that there were no new expenditures, with the new levy seeking $500,000 solely dedicated for CIP needs, and some shifted around.
Mayor Roe, as part of the CIP Task Force, concurred, noting that the recommendation of the Task Force was to increase funding annually by $850,000; with $500,000 from new levy revenue and applied toward CIP, with the other $350,000 cut from operational spending. In order to address other impacts to the budget with that action, Mayor Roe advised that staff had determined that they had to cut more ($700,000) and that difference was from the MVHC.
Regarding Employee wage steps, and healthcare costs (line 48), Councilmember Pust questioned if that was the employer contribution, with Mr. Miller responding that the majority of it was the employer’s portion.
Councilmember Pust questioned the percentage currently paid as an employer for those costs; with Mr. Miller advising that it was dependent on what the employee elected to do: single coverage or a higher tier options or single versus family coverage with different rate plans. Mr. Miller advised that the City contributed up to $900 for that plan, but some of the plans were in excess of $1,200.
Councilmember Pust clarified that the City paid 100% for single coverage at no cost to them; and Mr. Miller verified that this was the City’s pledge to pay 100% for single coverage.
Councilmember Pust questioned if this was under or over budget; and whether this increase was all related to family coverage. Mr. Miller clarified that the City has pledged to pay a certain percentage of employee health care premiums; however, employees may choose single or family coverage, but the City had an established maximum exposure threshold of $900; and this helped to offset any increases as well.
At the request of Councilmember Pust, Mr. Miller advised that the City paid 75-80% of employee health care costs, depending on their plan selection; but clarified that no employee paid near 50% out-of-pocket costs.
Mr. Miller advised that as time has evolved, employees have been absorbing higher prescription costs, higher deductibles, and have elected tier plans that moved more of the risk to some of those employees.
Councilmember Pust noted that this was indicative of impacts for other employees throughout the country, whether in the private or public sector.
Councilmember Willmus questioned how many employees were receiving 100%; with Mr. Miller advising that, while he didn’t have that information available at this time, he would provide it to the City Council.
Councilmember Johnson asked if the City was mandated by various union agreements to surpass a certain level or to provide a certain level of coverage for union employee health care; how many employees were covered by contract; and if there were any subsidies or cafeteria plans for union employees.
Mr. Miller advised that this was a negotiated benefit; with about half of the City’s employees covered under collective bargaining agreements; and all agreements structured for parity so all employees received the same coverage, whether union or not.
Councilmember Willmus questioned the terms of existing union contracts and whether they were negotiated on an annual basis, with City Manager Malinen advising that some were annual and some were multi-year contracts; with one settled for 2012.
Councilmember Pust sought clarification that contracts were negotiated for a 2-3 term, rather than on an annual basis.
City Manager Malinen advised that it varied; and that multi-year contracts were being attempted; but historically they have been negotiated annually.
Councilmember Pust noted the proposed increase of 60-65% for increased water, sewer and storm sewer fees, that all residents would be receiving notice of in December, and questioned budgetary implications if that didn’t happen and how it tied into the rest of the budget.
Mayor Roe advised that those fees were strictly to meet CIP needs; and if not approved, capital projects in those areas would need to be deferred yet again. However, Mayor Roe advised that the intent was to cover CIP needs and sustain their funding for the next twenty (20) years through that one-time fee.
Discussion ensued on the timing of the public hearing on the CIP fees and adoption f the 2012 budget, with one week allowed for any further adjustments.
Mayor Roe noted that the 2012 budget needed adoption; and that the 2013 budget was what would be ultimately addressed in December.
From a planning perspective, Mr. Miller advised that a biennial budget adopted in December was for those planning purposes but would have no legal standing, with an annual budget needing formal adoption again in 2013, as per state statute.
Mayor Roe suggested that concentration be on the statutory requirements for 2012 and the not-to-exceed levy, with additional time available for further refinement for final adoption.
Councilmember Johnson suggested that the City Council not just stay at the 3.4% levy increase, but consider setting the not-to-exceed levy at 4% to allow more discussion on the larger picture; specifically leaving room for more discussion on the PIP.
Johnson moved, McGehee seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 10928 (Attachment A) entitled, “Resolution Submitting the Preliminary Property Tax Levy on Real Estate to the Ramsey County Auditor for the Fiscal Year of 2012;” as amended to increase the not-to-exceed levy percentage to 4% over the 2011 levy amount; for a total amount of 15,291,245.
Councilmember McGehee referenced her personal budget review for the biennial budget discussion, included in the meeting packet (Attachment F); and expressed her support for ongoing funding for CIP.
Discussion ensued on Councilmember McGehee’s 2012 and 2013 options as outlined on the attachment; with Mr. Miller clarifying that enterprise funds (e.g. water, sanitary sewer, storm water) could be funded from property taxes, but clarified that from a historical perspective, the City had funded them solely through their rate structures; and further clarified that Mr. Miller’s annual interest payment included principal and interest.
Councilmember Member referenced the $700,000 projected interest needing to be paid since infrastructure needs were not addressed in the past; and opined that that was a pathetic situation.
Councilmember Pust sought further clarification in her attempts to track page 2 of the memorandum with budget summaries (Attachments D and E) for tax-supported and non-tax-supported funds and her inability to reconcile them.
After further discussion, it was found that the Attachment D was missing several lines at the bottom, creating the confusion and inability to reconcile the memorandum with the attachments. Mr. Miller apologized for this discrepancy, and demonstrated how the documents tied together: City Manager restored $287,230, less the contingency used for restoration of previous program cuts at $53,635; totaling a net change of $385,920 at 2.0%; tying into page 2 of the staff report.
Mayor Roe spoke in support of allowing additional leeway in the not-to-exceed levy until more discussion occurred on the PIP and how to address the PIP going forward and its relationship to the Park Master Plan implementation. Mayor Roe suggested that the CIP Task Force may want to have additional discussion on that specific item.
For purposes of the preliminary levy, Councilmember Willmus spoke in support of the motion; reiterating his request to staff for additional information on union contracts.
Ayes: Willmus; McGehee; Johnson; and Roe.
For the record, Councilmember Pust recognized the framework and the City Council’s focus on making up for capital needs that should have been addressed by past City Councils; however, she asked that the City Council also consider that, since 2004 or for seven (7) tax years, property taxes in Roseville had raised an average of 31% total; and opined that this represented a very large number.
Along those lines, Councilmember McGehee questioned why things were not being maintained with that significant of an increase.
Councilmember Pust suggested that maybe the City had too much to maintain.
Councilmember McGehee, in her review of 2004 – 2010 and total annual expenditures during that period, noted that expenditures actually decreased, but at the same time, cost of living adjustments (COLA) increased by 15.9% and the consumer price index went up 17.6%. Councilmember McGehee opined that it was apparent that the budget was reduced during that period.
Johnson moved, Willmus seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 10929 (Attachment B) entitled, “Resolution Directing the County Auditor to Adjust the Approved Tax Levy for 2012 Bonded Debt;” reducing the debt to $289,187.20) from that originally scheduled upon the issuance of bonds, now being paid by debt service reserves.
Johnson moved, Willmus seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 10930 (Attachment C) entitled, “Resolution Adopting the Preliminary 2012 Annual Budget for the City of Roseville;” amended in the amount of $41,413,004, of which $19,405,810 is designated for property tax-supported programs. (page 7, line 205.)
Since voting against the 4%, Councilmember Pust advised that she would consistently oppose this motion; clarifying that she was supportive of the PIP, but thought other funding options could be found.
Councilmember Johnson recognized, with concurrence by Councilmember Willmus, some interesting points brought up by Councilmember Pust at the previous meeting that should be pursued.
d. Consider a Resolution Related to Adopting the Preliminary 2012-2013 Not-to-Exceed Housing and Redevelopment Authority (HRA) Levy
Pust moved, Johnson seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 10931 (Attachment A) entitled, “A Resolution Submitting the Housing and Redevelopment Authority, in and for the City of Roseville, Special Property Tax Levy on Real Estate to the Ramsey County Auditor for the Fiscal Year of 2012;” in the amount of $353,500.
Councilmember McGehee questioned why there was not copy of the 2012 Proposed Budget for the HRA in the meeting packet materials.
HRA Executive Director Patrick Trudgeon distributed a copy of the DRAFT Budget worksheet dated June 13, 2011, attached hereto and made a part hereof; while reminding Councilmember McGehee that the City Council did not actually approve the HRA budget. Mr. Trudgeon noted that HRA had approved a preliminary budget for recommendation to the City Council, as submitted at an earlier meeting; and indicated that the HRA was lowering their budget by approximately $9,000 from 2010; proposing a $444,500 budget for the not-to-exceed preliminary levy.
Ayes: Willmus; Pust; Johnson; and Roe.
Mayor Roe recessed the meeting at approximately 8:35 pm and reconvened at approximately 8:42 pm.
e. Consider Request by Meritex Enterprises, Inc. for a Preliminary Plat of Outlot A in the Highcrest Park Addition Plat
Community Development Director Patrick Trudgeon briefly summarized the RCA dated September 12, 2011; noting that the building had since been demolished. Mr. Trudgeon highlighted the conditions recommended by staff and detailed in Section 7 of the RCA; and upon review by the Parks and Recreation Commission, their recommendation for park dedication fees was for cash in lieu of land. Mr. Trudgeon noted that this was just the Preliminary Plat, and the Final Plat would return as an action item for the City Council at a future date.
Johnson moved, Willmus seconded, approval of the proposed PRELIMINARY PLAT at 2285 Walnut Street; based on the comments and findings of Sections 4-6 and the conditions of Section 7 of the Request for Council Action (RCA) dated September 12, 2011.
f. Consider a Resolution Related to the Housing and Redevelopment Authority Appointment (HRA) to Fill a Vacancy
Mayor Roe recommended appointment of Ms. Debora L. Battisto to the City’s HRA to complete a five-year term vacated by Commissioner Susan Elkins, with that term expiring September 23, 2015; and urged City Council support of that recommendation.
Mayor Willmus noted that this appointment process was handled differently than most Commission vacancies, as it was proscribed by State Statute.
McGehee moved, Johnson seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 10932 (Attachment C) entitled, “Resolution Approving Mayor’s Appointment of Debora L. Battisto to the Housing and Redevelopment Authority in and for the City of Roseville to Fill an Unexpired Term;” to complete a five-year term on the Housing and Redevelopment Authority that ends September 23, 2015.
Mayor Roe thanked the City Council for their support; and offered congratulations to Ms. Battisto.
g. Consider Councilmember Attendance at National League of Cities Conference
A brief discussion was held on the attendance at this upcoming conference, due to timing issues for registration and potential early registration cost savings if any Councilmembers were interested.
Councilmembers Willmus and Johnson advised that they were unable to attend.
Councilmember Pust advised that she didn’t with to attend; and questioned the value of this type of training, when there were so many opportunities available through technical and/or best practice options, such as receiving materials via internet or participating in webinar conferences and training. Councilmember Pust opined that there must be a reason why no City Councilmembers had attended since 2002; and while recognizing the need for networking with colleagues, she didn’t see any value in authorizing attendance at this conference, also noting that the City was no longer a member of the National League of Cities.
City Manager Malinen encouraged individual Councilmembers to get involved with local organizations, such as the League of Minnesota Cities (LMC) and others that may prove beneficial.
Councilmember Pust spoke in support of local LMC conference options.
Mayor Roe opined that the offerings for this specific conference didn’t appear to have any great value; and it appeared to be Council consensus to not have a Roseville City Council elected official attend.
16. Business Items – Presentations/Discussions
a. Infrastructure Improvements for the Twin Lakes AUAR Area Final Report – Update
City Engineer Debra Bloom and Community Development Director Patrick Trudgeon were available for this presentation. Mr. Trudgeon noted that the purpose of tonight’s presentation was for discussion and information only; and that formal adoption would be sought at the City Council’s September 26, 2011 meeting. Mr. Trudgeon clarified that the allocation agreement was a freestanding document, and was not incorporated in the overlay district document, but that it would be referenced.
Mr. Trudgeon briefly summarized the information included in the staff report dated September 12, 2011 related to infrastructure improvements for the Twin Lakes AUAR Area – Final Report adopted in February of 2008; and updated later that same year, and again in April of 2010. Mr. Trudgeon advised that these frequent reviews were intended to ensure that infrastructure needs identified in the AUAR were being addressed; and that cost estimates were updated and proportionally assigned to parcels throughout the redevelopment area.
Ms. Bloom provided background on various scenarios, based on the guidance of the Comprehensive Plan with Scenario being the most intense, and Scenarios B and C less intense, but focusing on residential and commercial mitigation throughout the system.
Ms. Bloom advised that the AUAR – Appendix H listed seventeen (17) different roadway improvements necessary to ensure no impact to the transportation system as redevelopment of the Twin Lakes area occurred. Ms. Bloom noted that improvement cost allocations were based on a “cost per network trip;” and explained network trips, and how each parcel impacted different intersections and street segments from origin to destination. Ms. Bloom noted that those roadway cost estimates had been developed based on environmental clean-up needs, building demolition, actual right-of-way costs, actual construction and engineering costs; and adjustments from engineer’s estimates and adjustments for construction inflation.
Ms. Bloom provided an update from staff on a proposed change in methodology that expanded the area to be included in the allocation that would include parcels from previous development, including the addition of background traffic and the addition of base line traffic that would be covered by public funds and based on 2006 land use for existing uses. Ms. Bloom noted that the allocation agreement added redevelopment areas in existing areas, and comparisons were made between the tables from 2010 and 2011 to see how the addition of the background and base line traffic impacted the infrastructure. Ms. Bloom noted that the original report only had four (4) of the seventeen (17) improvements for background traffic, and now the proposal was for $12 million in public costs with the background traffic added.
Ms. Bloom clarified that the base line network trips were based on pre-AUAR land uses; and if redevelopment traffic did not exceed that base line, they the parcel would not have a cost allocation. Ms. Bloom noted that many uses in 2006 were not fully operational, and advised that staff had attempted to be conservative in their numbers.
Ms. Bloom noted that the cost allocation overview for network trips represented the sum of this development’s vehicular trips that pass through intersections/segments requiring improvements; with the total cost allocation based on that specific development’s total cost proportion based on its network impacts; creating an average cost per network trip with that total cost allocation divided by network trips.
Based on that methodology, Ms. Bloom advised that the cost allocation summary indicated a total cost of $26,462,791, with public costs allocated at $14,260,683, and redevelopment costs allocated at $12,202,108. Ms. Bloom noted that the City had used grant funds and TIF dollars as applicable to-date; and this reduced the overall total, and created the rationale for this new methodology.
Public Utility Costs
Ms. Bloom advised that staff was not proposing changes to public utility costs; but simply to update estimates to reflect actual costs with development of a per acre cost for Subarea I, then extrapolating that cost to Subareas II and III. Ms. Bloom provided a cost allocation overview, based on the size of a parcel, with Table 4 unchanged and recognizing reclassification for right-of-way acquisition to from private to public property.
Regarding traffic added for previously developed properties, Councilmember Pust sought clarification that if traffic increases are seen over time with redevelopment, existing infrastructure was adequate to serve their parcels; with Ms. Bloom reference the staff report in addressing the proposed methodology changes to infrastructure improvements for the Twin Lakes AUAR – Final Report.
Mr. Trudgeon advised that Attachment C (4th column) showed the 2010 updated compared to the 2011 Scenario C update; with public costs at $14 million. However, Mr. Trudgeon emphasized that staff wanted to very clear that grant and/or TIF dollars, not tax dollars, should suffice, with TIF generated revenue over the life of the TIF District anticipated to be $16 million, covering the cost of public improvements in the Twin Lakes Redevelopment Area. Mr. Trudgeon advised that this would leave little, if any, TIF available to assist development projects beyond that. Mr. Trudgeon clarified that there were limited funds still available in the Environmental Hazard District.
Mayor Roe sought clarification that the TIF analysis had been done based on Scenario C and on development levels, not done based on the most intense use.
Mr. Trudgeon concurred; however, he noted that there remained a lot of variables, with the timing of redevelopment the main one; and the longer you wait to develop, the less you collected.
Councilmember Pust questioned if the $14,260,683 on Attachment C should correspond to the 2013 background traffic amount.
Ms. Bloom responded that the traffic background PLUS the base line highlighted in lines 13 – 18 of Figure 21 (Attachment C) for other improvements had already been included in other amounts; and advised that staff’s next iteration would highlight public costs on that table.
At the request of Councilmember Johnson, Mr. Trudgeon advised that Table 4 was indicative of approximate cost-based scenarios for private land owners as they came forward with a proposed use and development proposal. However, Mr. Trudgeon advised that, at that time, they would need to provide a traffic study to determine a hard number and pay according to that finding as part of the development process. Mr. Trudgeon noted that the Twin Lakes Overlay District document addressed that payment option through a volunteer Development Agreement and other AUAR item mitigations or waiting until the infrastructure is in place. However, Mr. Trudgeon noted that the infrastructure improvements would most likely not take place without developer contributions to those improvements.
At the request of Councilmember Johnson related to staff’s development of criteria to determine infrastructure costs, Ms. Bloom advised that developers would come forward with their estimated costs.
For the viewing audience, Councilmember Johnson asked that Ms. Bloom reiterate what is being asked of developers.
Ms. Bloom advised that as each new development proposal was submitted for review, it would be run through a model for distribution of network trips and improvements indicated; then a review would be performed to develop actual network trips and the larger table for impacts on other improvements; with network trips assigned a cost, whether more or less intense than the base line. Ms. Bloom used the most recent development in Twin Lakes, the Metropolitan Transportation Park and Ride facility as an example; and referenced the traffic study done for that project, summarizing the process. Ms. Bloom noted that it was the intent to be as transparent as possible in providing trip costs and expected models for distribution.
Mr. Trudgeon noted that Councilmember Johnson raised a good point, that this was a lot of information to absorb, and while staff was attempting to do outreach with landowners throughout the process to keep them aware of these proposals, he recognized the need to continue that outreach; and encouraged questions as they came up.
At the request of Councilmember Johnson on the general consensus of property owners, Mr. Trudgeon noted that property owners and developers had been waiting a long time, but continued to be concerned about any costs attributable to them, preferring no costs. However, Mr. Trudgeon noted that most of the property owners and developers recognized the big picture; and assured all that given today’s market, every attempt was being made to minimize their costs; and advised that this new methodology lowered their allotted costs from that of last year, opining that this was a step in the right direction from their point of view.
In response to Councilmember Johnson’s comments, Councilmember Pust recognized that, while property owners would prefer to pay nothing, the first in/last out scenario created a problem too. However, Councilmember Pust opined that this allocation methodology provided a benefit across the entire area with all realizing that benefit and creating a positive environment for them.
Mayor Roe noted that, while all parcels benefited from public improvements, they also contributed to their wear and tear; and this allocation attempted to address different intensities having different impacts. Mayor Roe noted that this change in methodology provided a big picture change with network trips for 2030 shifted to the background with public contributions included; in addition to developing a base line pre-2006 credit in addition to future improvements. Mayor Roe noted that the traffic study looked at an analysis throughout all improvements, with network trips per improvement adding up to an aggregate number with different impacts for projects other than original assumptions. Mayor Roe questioned what the trigger was and how to account for when that happened and how to be fair so the last one doesn’t have to pay for the others.
Ms. Bloom advised that previous traffic studies, as well as incremental tests, and projected 2015 and 2030 studies would determine the cause, whether background traffic or a development proposal, or subsequent growth.
Mayor Roe confirmed that, once a development was in place, contributions would go toward future development, with the past being accounted for in price updates annually; providing for fairness to be built into the system and allowing for much greater comfort with those assumptions.
At the request of Councilmember Willmus on Subarea 3, Block 1 (Attachment C), Ms. Bloom advised that the discrepancy pointed out was created by the timing of the cost allocation study; with the public street installed and cost allocations for those improvements not yet included on Table 4 and needing to be updated.
Mark Rancone, Roseville Properties (County Road C and Cleveland Avenue)
Mr. Rancone noted that, as previously stated, landowners would prefer to pay nothing; and opined that determining what was fair for each landowners now and in the future was a difficult balancing act. In his particular case, Mr. Rancone opined that if the improvements were completed, they should pay their fair share as they benefited their land, as per State Statute stipulations. Mr. Rancone questioned the legality of this type of formula; however, he expressed appreciation to staff giving it further annual review and reflecting market place changes since 2006, resulting in the numbers being reduced substantially, even though they remained extensive. Mr. Rancone noted that the buildings on their parcels had been decommissioned in early 2000 in anticipation of the previous redevelopment; and he questioned if those numbers were still relative given the slow pace of development in the Twin Lakes Redevelopment Area. Mr. Rancone opined that the out-of-pocket for the City would net around $6.5 million, and as it affected only the west end parcels, it may prove to be the only infrastructure needing done and completed already.
Mr. Rancone suggested that the City focus on what had been completed and allocate those dollars versus projecting what could possibility be positive or negative if it doesn’t’ develop up to Fairview Avenue. Mr. Rancone opined that there was no benefit to their parcels to have that connection; and noted that they had been asked to give up land in addition to paying an additional $2 million. Mr. Rancone asked that the process be fair to all involved and focus on stimulating growth; opining that the City had already lost millions in tax dollars in not redeveloping this area already.
Mr. Rancone noted that the process to-date had continued to have delay after delay: from waiting for the Comprehensive Plan to evolve; and then for completion of the AUAR. Mr. Rancone opined that if the redevelopment had already occurred, some of the City’s financial issues with deferred maintenance and other CIP needs could have been avoided with that additional tax base. Mr. Rancone concluded by opining that every year of delay only continued to exacerbate this problem.
As a follow-up for staff, Mayor Roe asked that they consider a discussion on how to cover costs over time with a payment mechanism to tie it to project completion or through an escrow account.
Mr. Trudgeon advised that those thoughts and discussions were ongoing, but there was no conclusion on the staff level yet. Mr. Trudgeon advised that staff would welcome input from individual Councilmembers on development of such a policy: whether to build all the infrastructure; ability for developer in an agreement to have some ability to recapture those costs over time; how to weight that with ensuring that solid funding is available; and whether payments are made or a lump sum from developers.
b. Discuss and Ordinance to Create the Twin Lakes Overlay District
Community Development Director Patrick Trudgeon reviewed the need for an ordinance, the Twin Lakes Overlay District, to implement and enforce the AUAR, as detailed in the staff report dated September 12, 2011. While traffic is a large part of the implementation, Mr. Trudgeon noted that there were other mitigation efforts such as environmental, park dedication, native cover requirements, and other issues for each developer to adhere to. While the AUAR was a stand-alone document for implementation, unless this specific action was taken, there was nothing in State Statute requiring implementation of the AUAR, and no necessary tool available for enforcement.
Mr. Trudgeon referenced the attachments to the staff report, including previous Planning Commission review and their revisions to-date, with more pending.
City Attorney Bartholdi provided comments from a planning perspective, with the purpose of the ordinance to allow property owners in the Twin Lakes Redevelopment Area to redevelop their property; however, he noted that the problem was that if the area developed to the anticipated level, there was insufficient infrastructure to support that development. As a result, Mr. Bartholdi advised that a method was needed to allow that infrastructure to develop. Mr. Bartholdi referenced Chapter 1022,.03, Section E of the DRAFT ordinance, and base network trip as previously discussed; and allowances if the property owner came in with a development at that level or less, not paying any fee. However, if they came in with a development in excess of the base line network trips, then a proportionate fee would apply. Mr. Bartholdi advised that the purpose of the ordinance was to mitigate and carry forth those procedures as detailed.
Mr. Bartholdi noted that Chapter 1022.05 picked up other items as set forth in the AUAR for general requirements and standards; with the AUAR having an extensive list of mitigation factors and the intent of the ordinance to incorporate all of those mitigation standards.
At the request of Councilmember Johnson, Mr. Bartholdi advised that there were currently no other districts in the City with such fee structures; however, he noted that the Cities of Minnetonka and Rochester had successfully implemented similar structures.
Councilmember Johnson questioned why only some environmental issues were specified, and not others; and whether it was thought that those contaminants were isolated to one particular area.
City Attorney Bartholdi advised that the AUAR had been created indicating that certain environmental issues were evident in the area and that this created the needed infrastructure unique to this area.
Councilmember McGehee reiterated her concerns that there would be no problem if specific uses for the area were addressed; particularly those uses already developed and included in the original Twin Lakes Master Plan.
When Mayor Roe questioned if that was a correct characterization, Councilmember McGehee responded that the original Master Plan guided keeping trip levels down by designating certain types of high trip generators.
Mayor Roe asked for staff confirmation that the AUAR analysis scenarios were based on the original Twin Lakes Master Plan.
Mr. Trudgeon confirmed that they were; and that the AUAR was driving this document as well as the allocation plan; with all three (3) of the development scenarios based on that original Master Plan process; and predicated on development scenarios as part of the AUAR. Mr. Trudgeon advised that if the AUAR levels were changed, this proposed ordinance would also need to be changed; and understanding that the AUAR was based on the original and previously-created Twin Lakes Master Plan was a reflection of that.
Mayor Roe sought clarification from staff that the AUAR implementation, through the allocation plan and overlay district, was based on the original Master Plan scenarios; and that uses were based on that Master Plan and dictated the AUAR analysis.
Councilmember McGehee opined that the Master Plan pre-dated the updated AUAR.
Mayor Roe noted that the Master Plan didn’t take into account specific details about traffic counts; but made broad assumptions; and the AUAR then took those and fleshed them out into numbers and impacts.
Councilmember McGehee reiterated her opinion that the Master Plan predated all of this, and was similar to Rosedale and other general developments calling for a Planned Unit Development (PUD) process.
Councilmember Willmus noted that this was the issue that was litigated a number of years ago based on objections of a neighborhood group, bringing the situation to this point; and questioned whether it was beneficial to rehash that issue and suggest that it needed to be revisited or revert to where the development area and City were in 2005.
Councilmember McGehee disputed that interpretation; opining that a lot of the Master Plan had been incorporated into the allocation study and certainly into mitigation strategies; but the piece that seemed to be most noticeably missing was the piece on uses.
Mayor Roe clarified that the uses were dictated by the CMU zoning in the Zoning Code, as well as in the Comprehensive Plan designation. At the request of Councilmember Johnson, Mayor Roe advised that the Twin Lakes Master Plan was not intended to be included in the updated Comprehensive Plan; but that the AUAR was based on the Master Plan map from 2001, the basis or foundation upon which everything else built. While note being an official part of the updated Comprehensive Plan document, Mayor Roe stated that it was still referenced and ingrained in the entire AUAR process.
Councilmember Pust recalled that during the Comprehensive Plan Study group meetings, the Master Plans had been discussed and a process for bringing them back to the City Council if they were still considered viable; and questioned if there had been followed-up.
Mayor Roe clarified that, while no Master Plans were included in the Comprehensive Plan update (2008/2009) that was not a decision that they would all go away.
Councilmember Pust questioned why the proposed ordinance specifically called out one form of contamination and not others.
City Attorney Bartholdi advised that this language was verbatim from the AUAR.
Mr. Trudgeon and City Attorney Bartholdi noted that the AUAR had specifically identified some of the contaminants already evidenced or analyzed and defined through previous environmental studies and assessments. City Attorney Bartholdi advised that Chapter 1022.04.b of the ordinance provided a provision for any environmental impacts identified in the AUAR or findings from a Phase I or Phase II site assessment; and reports needed as applicable in those situations.
In addressing what concerns of Councilmember Pust in what triggered further analysis beyond soil borings done to-date in the area, Ms. Bloom responded that it was the intent of the proposed ordinance to cover mitigation and remediation items within the umbrella of the AUAR; however, that did not mean that a developer was not required to meet state law; and if there were contaminants on a site as with any type of project, the developer would need to do soil borings as a standard practice of the development process. Ms. Bloom advised that the developer was still charged with mitigating any of those issues; and clarified that the ordinance was not replacing state law; and advised that anytime you move dirt, there were state requirements to be met.
Mr. Trudgeon noted that the Pollution Control Agency (PCA) was charged with making determinations related to the glacial aquifer.
Mr. Rancone addressed the “voluntary agreement,” and opined that it seemed to be arbitrary or could be subjective or political if a particular project was not found favorable. Mr. Rancone asked for a clear response on that intent in the future. Mr. Rancone reiterated his concern that if you were one of the first developers, you paid for future improvements as well as those serving your particular development and parcel.
City Attorney Bartholdi clarified that if a development was over the base amount, additional infrastructure costs above and beyond those in the 2006 baseline would need to be installed; and it if not, there would be no additional fee; all based on the formulas shown and allotted from that $12 million.
Mr. Rancone noted that his concern was whether the $12 million was actually expended or not.
Mr. Bartholdi advised that the real intent of the ordinance for concept properties was to ensure that development could occur and ensure that adequate infrastructure was in place to service that development; with the City Council retaining the right to deny any application if infrastructure was found to be inadequate, and providing a basis for their denial. Mr. Bartholdi advised that, because the AUAR implied a mandate that certain mitigating factors had to be implemented, the intent of the ordinance was to implement development under a fair and equitable method for all.
City Attorney Bartholdi addressed “other such arrangements” or alternatives addressed in the ordinance language, including but not limited to bonding; Minnesota State Statutes, Chapter 429 and 444; and under certain circumstances, under Chapter 462.358 (subdivision statute); that all provide the City authority to have an involuntary Development Agreement to pay for reasonable costs of what is generated by a project.
Mayor Roe stated that, as a government agency, the City Council was held to the expectation that they would be fair and reasonable, and perform to a higher standard than being alleged by Mr. Rancone.
Mr. Rancone expressed his hope that the City Council, and future City Councils from a political standpoint, were committed to that concept, and would stand behind it, thereby alleviating his concern.
c. Discuss 2011 City Manager Goals
Mayor Roe noted the submitted document developed by Councilmember Pust and thanked her for her work.
At the request of Mayor Roe, City Manager Malinen advised that he had not yet reviewed the goals with Department Heads to determine completion dates; but would do so at their staff meeting the following day.
For the benefit of the public, Councilmember Pust tracked how the process had evolved to-date; and thanked her colleagues for their input. Councilmember Pust advised that the City Council had held a planning session in February of 2011 with City Councilmembers and staff; and at that session, a list of fifty-seven (57) priority items were identified to work on this year. Rather than thinking up new goals for the City Manager’s evaluation, Councilmember Pust advised that she had used that priority list other than those items specific to the City Council; and inserted categories for use in evaluating the City Manager, and incorporating her thoughts for outcome measurements. Councilmember Pust sought further input from individual Councilmembers: any needing eliminated or any additions they might have.
Councilmember Pust noted the timing or temporal scope of this document, and with it being September of 2011 already; opined that it didn’t make sense to evaluate City Manager Malinen within three (3) months of developing the goals; and instead suggested that a nine (9) month evaluation (mini-360 and current rating system with a list of accomplishments to-date) be used; and then this new format be used in evaluating City Manager Malinen for a fifteen (15) month period based on those identified goals.
Councilmember Johnson thanked Councilmember Pust for her work; however, he expressed how this tied into the survey; and while agreeing with the criteria, how it could be incorporated into the public domain. Councilmember Johnson advised that he was working with another organization on a manager survey, and he was finding that there were many questions not applicable in the public realm that would be applicable for review by in-house staff or with the City Council.
Mayor Roe questioned if this proposal was to change the review form, but noted that goals are one of the City Manager contract.
Councilmember Johnson opined that the survey should be more comprehensive as well.
Mayor Roe opined that a list of goals and measurement outcomes was one aspect of a review; and the survey was more about qualitative attributes.
Councilmember Pust concurred with Councilmember Johnson that this entire list should not be distributed to the 360 participant list; but categories under competencies were taken directly from the survey; and further review of those items appropriate or applicable for the public would need to be done.
Councilmember McGehee opined that there should be a different survey for the public and another for Department Heads. Regarding this document, Councilmember McGehee opined that her biggest problem was what was missing; and that these ideas from staff and the City Council had little to do with the City Manager’s review, when their completion or lack thereof was based on who he assigned them to on his staff; rather than what her was personally moving forward with.
At approximately 10:05 pm, Johnson moved, McGehee seconded, extending the meeting for another five minutes to complete this discussion.
Councilmember McGehee requested more time to review this document and to evaluate the work of the City Manager and his creativity; not what he delegated to other staff.
Councilmember Pust recognized the sentiment expressed by Councilmember McGehee; however, she opined that the leader of an organization is judged on what he and his staff accomplish. Councilmember Pust expressed her willingness to look at suggestions to make the document better.
Related to the suggestion to make this a 2012, 15-month review process, Mayor Roe opined that it made sense, and expressed his interest in improving on the 2011 process. Mayor Roe opined that his point in attaining goals and attributes of an individual as an employee was based on measuring goal outcomes; but also on those attributes of an individual that earlier surveys focused on; and noted that he was not interested in making this the survey and replacing the rest.
Councilmember Johnson advised that, if there was consensus for Councilmember Pust’s suggestion to perform a nine (9) month review, followed by this fifteen (15) month review in 2012, he needed to coordinate with Human Resources Director Eldona Bacon on getting the review process implemented and formulate a survey for those nine (9) months. Councilmember Johnson suggested that the existing survey and existing goals be used for that nine (9) month review.
Mayor Roe noted that the goals were not part of the survey process; while Councilmember Johnson clarified that they were part of the evaluation system.
Mayor Roe spoke in support of Councilmember Johnson proceeding with the nine (9) month review process to make it more manageable at this late date.
Councilmember Johnson advised that he would move forward with Ms. Bacon accordingly.
Mayor Roe expressed interest in broadening the employee participation since City Manager Malinen had now been on board for 4.5 years, and employees may have had more interaction with him beyond just Department Heads.
Councilmember Johnson advised that Assistant Directors would be included to broaden the participant list; and would consult with Ms. Bacon on how best to involve staff.
City Manager Malinen noted that Assistants had participated in the past.
Councilmember McGehee expressed interest in participating in the process; and Councilmember Johnson welcomed her as his “assistant” in the process with the existing process.
With Council consensus, Mayor Roe appointed a subcommittee of Councilmembers Johnson and McGehee for the nine (9) month evaluation of City Manager Malinen.
Councilmember Pust questioned her role, having drafted this document: whether to hand it off or continue refining it.
Councilmember Willmus expressed his approval of what Councilmember Pust had presented, while agreeing that goals may be more applicable for some but not all participants; but noted that City Manager Malinen was the City Council’s employee and they were charged with identifying their expectations, whether accomplished by Mr. Malinen or through his delegation to his staff.
Mayor Roe clarified that this would become a two-step process: to get the 2011 survey initiated and; and then to broaden it in 2012; with the overall goal in both years to get things wrapped up sooner rather than later.
17. City Manager Future Agenda Review
City Manager Malinen provided a list of upcoming agenda items.
Discussion included whether it made sense to do long-range planning when City Manager Malinen would not be attending the September 19, 2011 meeting; with City Manager Malinen noting that he was fine with the discussion proceeding in his absence, for his dissemination at a later date upon his return. Mr. Malinen noted that the majority of the information was being put together by Community Development Director Trudgeon; and opined that this provided a good opportunity for City Council discussion.
18. Councilmember-Initiated Items for Future Meetings
Johnson moved, Willmus seconded, adjournment of the meeting at approximately 10:12 pm.