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City Council

City Council Meeting Minutes

September 9, 2013


1.            Roll Call

Mayor Roe called to order the Roseville City Council regular meeting at approximately 6:00 pm, welcomed everyone and made introductions.  Voting and Seating Order as called by Interim City Manager Trudgeon: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten; and Roe. 

City Attorney Mark Gaughan was also present.


2.         Approve Agenda

Councilmember McGehee moved to reconsider a previous vote on authorizing the Eureka Recycling contract term for further discussion to extend the contract from three (3) to five (5) years.  Councilmember McGehee opined that all points were not sufficiently covered in determining the length of the contract term.


Due to the lack of a second, Mayor Roe ruled the motion failed.


Mayor Roe noted removal by staff of Business Item 13.d entitled, “Perform an Abatement for Unresolved Violations of C city Code at 170 County Road B,” as the item had been resolved.


Etten moved, Laliberte seconded, approval of the agenda as amended.


                                                Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

            Nays: None.


3.         Public Comment

Mayor Roe called for public comment by members of the audience on any non-agenda items.  No one appeared to speak.


4.         Council Communications, Reports and Announcements

Mayor Roe announced upcoming Roseville Housing & Redevelopment Authority (HRA) co-sponsored evening seminars scheduled on September 18, September 25 and October 16, 2013 at the Ramsey County Library with topics related to protecting home values and making life easier.  Mayor Roe noted that the seminars were free, but registration was required by calling 651-792-7078.


Councilmember Willmus requested that staff make sure those seminars are posted on the City’s webpage or linked as applicable; with Interim City Manager Trudgeon advising that he would follow-up to ensure they were published and posted in as many media sources as possible, if not already done.


Councilmember McGehee advised that she and Interim City Manager Trudgeon had attended a meeting last week related to aging and dementia, that included staff from various assisted living and care facilities in the immediate area.  Councilmember McGehee advised that she would continue to move forward with the group as they looked at other opportunities to provide more assistance to the community’s older residents and their caregivers; including looking to other communities for their models.


Councilmember McGehee expressed her disappointment that the City Council majority had not voted in support of further discussion of the Eureka Recycling contract, opining that it would have had the potential to save residents a significant cost over the next five (5) years, as well as reducing staff time and ensuring rates would not increase exorbitantly after the initial three (3) years of the contract.


As City Council liaison to C-TV and the Access Corporation, Mayor Roe distributed, as a bench handout, a list of  free services provided by the North Suburban Access Corporation (NSAC, or CTV) for the ten (10) member cities of the group.  Mayor Roe noted that the City of Roseville was almost up to 100 hours of services provided for 2013, which would total $7,800.00 in services received at no cost based on rates and costs of C-TV that were charged for production services, noting that those costs would be even more if obtained in the private market place.


5.         Recognitions, Donations, Communications


a.            Proclaim Hispanic Heritage Month

Mayor Roe read a Proclamation declaring September 15 to October 15, 2013 as Hispanic Heritage Month in the City of Roseville.


Willmus moved, Etten seconded, proclaiming September 15 to October 15, 2013 as Hispanic Heritage Month in the City of Roseville.


                                      Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

            Nays: None.


b.            Accept Donations for Replacement of Fire Department Flammable Liquid Response Unit

Fire Chief Tim O’Neill represented the Fire Department in seeking acceptance of the donation, as detailed in the Request for Council Action (RCA) dated September 9, 2013; with the unit displayed for inspection in the City Hall parking lot prior to tonight’s meeting.  Chief O’Neill noted that this equipment was more versatile and efficient and provided a significant cost savings. 


Chief O’Neill introduced Mike Broderick, a representative of NuStar, present for tonight’s meeting; and Mr. Broderick reviewed the partnership of the parties in protecting the safety of the community and affected companies.  Mr. Broderick noted that the NuStar Terminal and the Roseville Fire Department have had a long history of working together with related equipment and training; and expressed their company’s pride in being a partner with and part of the Roseville Community.


On behalf of the community, Mayor Roe thanked NuStar, Lubrication Technologies, and Magellan Midstream Holdings for their partnership and generosity.


Etten moved, Laliberte seconded, acceptance of donations from Lubrication Technologies, Magellan Midstream Holdings, and NuStar Corporation, for the purchase of a new utility truck and foam trailer for and in conjunction with the Roseville Fire Department.


                                                Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

            Nays: None.


6.         Approve Minutes

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.


a.            Approve Minutes of August 26, 2013 Meeting

Etten moved, McGehee seconded, approval of the August 26, 2013 Meeting Minutes as presented.


                                                Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

                        Nays: None.


7.            Approve Consent Agenda

.  At the request of Mayor Roe, Interim City Manager Patrick Trudgeon briefly reviewed those items being considered under the Consent Agenda.


a.            Approve Payments

Etten moved, Laliberte seconded, approval of the following claims and payments as presented.         


Check Series #


ACH Payments


71156 – 71336





                                    Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.


b.            Approve Business & Other Licenses & Permits

Etten moved, Laliberte seconded, approval of a Massage Therapist License application for the period of one (1) year, for Taylor Rolloff-Fellner at Massage Xcape, 1767 Lexington Avenue N.


                                    Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.


c.            Approve General Purchases in Excess of $5,000

          Etten moved, Laliberte seconded, approval of the submitted list of general purchases and contracts for services presented as follows:






Budget / CIP




AMR data collector antenna (part of the automated meter reading system)



Park & Rec.

Upper Cut

Tree Services

Buckthorn removal at Langton Lake (in conjunction with the Conservation partners Legacy Grant Project and the Parks Renewal Program)




                                    Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.


d.            Approve an Amendment to the Lease Agreement with AT & T Wireless (formerly Cingular) for Additional Ground Space at the Water Tower Site

Interim City Manager Trudgeon clarified a typographical error on line 18 of the RCA, with the lease amount actually $280.00 per month, not annually as indicated.


Etten moved, Laliberte seconded, approval of a lease amendment (Attachment A) with AT & T Wireless for additional ground space at the Water Tower Site (2501 Fairview Avenue).

                                    Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.


e.            Approve School Liaison Office Contract

Two bench handouts were provided as they related to this contract, including a “Position Responsibility Write-Up for the Police Liaison Officer,” and “Recommended 2013-2014 School Calendar for Roseville Area Schools dated February 89, 2013;”

Etten moved, Laliberte seconded, approval of the 2013-2014 Roseville Area School Police Liaison Officer Agreement (Attachment A) as presented; and authorizing the Mayor and Interim City Manager to execute the document.


                                    Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.


f.             Authorize the Transfer of Tax Increment Funds between Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Districts

At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Interim City Manager Trudgeon clarified various legislative changes governing tax increment financing (TIF) districts and transfer of funds from one to another, depending on the age of the districts and provisions at that time dictating rules in their operation.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that staff would be bringing forward several other districts in the near future for City Council consideration of potential adjustments.  At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Trudgeon confirmed that of $6 million in TIF transferred from District 11 to District 17 had all been spent for actual construction and infrastructure costs.


Etten moved, Laliberte seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 11090 (Attachment A) entitled, “Resolution Providing for Transfer of Tax Increment Financing Funds relating to Tax Increment Financing District No. 11 and Tax Increment Financing District No. 17;” formally authorizing the re-categorization in accordance with State Statutes.

                                    Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.


g.            Approve a Resolution for the Final Acceptance and Maintenance for Public Improvements Constructed for Birch Park

Etten moved, Laliberte seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 11091 (Attachment A) entitled, “Final Acceptance and Maintenance for Public Improvements Constructed for Birch Park.”

                                    Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.


8.            Consider Items Removed from Consent


9.            General Ordinances for Adoption


a.            Approve Zoning Text Changes to Section 1004 (Residential Districts) of the City Code to Clarify the Intent of Certain Requirements Related to Storm Water

Associate Planner Bryan Lloyd briefly summarized the request to clarify particular provisions in one- and two-family zoning districts that address hard surfaces and rain water runoff as it is intended and applied; and as detailed in the RCA dated September 9, 2013


Councilmember McGehee requested further clarification for homes of a certain age that appeared to be excluded from mobility-impaired provisions; opining that the language needed to be worded more clearly.  Councilmember McGehee further suggested that, on page 2 of Attachment A (line 49), “pools” be added as another structure in Section 3.C (Improvement Areas).


Mr. Lloyd advised that the intent was that there may be some circumstances with properties less than twenty (20) years old on small lots that were maximally developed, that could not meet City Code requirements for setback and other storm water management provisions, but still needed to provide handicapped access.  Related to rationale in not listing pools in Section 3.c, Mr. Lloyd advised that the language was left intentionally vague to avoid defining a set of circumstances when there may be instances when something may occur outside those circumstances, therefore indicating general language that was left open-ended.


Interim City Manager Trudgeon suggested language in the first section related to age as follows: “…for homes newer than twenty (20) years…” retaining the remainder of the language (page 1 of Attachment A, line 25). 


Councilmember McGehee clarified with Public Works Director Duane Schwartz in the audience that a pool was considered part of the impervious surface calculation for a property.


At the request of Councilmember Willmus, Mr. Schwartz advised that the Planning Commission had reviewed this, but that the Public Works, Environment, and Transportation Commission (PWETC) had not weighed in on the proposed language.  While supporting this ordinance revision, Councilmember Willmus requested that in the future, the PWEC be consulted for recommendations with such issues under their realm of expertise.  Interim City Manager Trudgeon concurred and duly noted that request. 


Discussion ensued regarding whether or not to defer action until the PWETC had a chance to review the language or to adopt the revisions tonight, allowing for them to have some input after the fact.


Interim City Manager Trudgeon suggested that, if the City Council was willing to adopt the ordinance, the PWETC could be consulted, and if they had no major concerns, the ordinance could stand as approved tonight, or if there were major concerns of the PWETC, the ordinance could be brought back to the City Council for further review and consideration.

McGehee moved, Willmus seconded, enactment of Ordinance No. 1452 (Attachment A) entitled, “An Ordinance Amending Improvement Area Regulations of Chapter 1004 (Residential Districts) of Title 10 “Zoning Code” of the Roseville City Code;” as amended in Attachment A, Section 2.C, line 12 and Section 3.C (line 49) to include “pools” in the list of footprints within an improvement area; and Sections 2.C.2 and 3.C.4, line 62 to revise language from “Exception: For properties at least 20 years old,…” to “Exception: for homes newer than twenty (20) years…” with remaining language to remain; and guiding staff to provide the proposed ordinance as amended to the PWETC for their input, and if no major concerns or recommendations from that body, to proceed with the enactment process.

                              Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.


Willmus moved, Etten seconded, enactment of Ordinance Summary No. 1452 (Attachment A) entitled, “An Ordinance Amending Improvement Area Regulations of Chapter 1004 (Residential Districts) of Title 10 “Zoning Code” of the Roseville City Code.”

                                    Roll Call (Super Majority)

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.


10.         Presentations


a.            Joint Meeting with the Police Civil Service Commission

Commission Members present were Chair Brad VandeVegt; Zoe Jenkins; and Janet  Henquinet.


Chair VandeVegt reviewed vacancies in the Police Department, noting that the candidate pool had been very good with over 400 candidates applying, including internationally, for the vacancy in the department last fall.  Chair VandeVegt opined that this supported the respect given Roseville as a premier community and its Police Department as an outstanding law enforcement agency.  During the hiring process, Chair VandeVegt noted that additional streamlining had been enacted by the Commission, Chief Mathwig and his leadership team to further expedite the process, including implementation of an international officer test.  To-date, Chair VandeVegt advised that this had proven very effective in reviewing potential candidates.


Chair VandeVegt reviewed upcoming work of the Commission in keeping the Police Department fully staffed, and keeping the Police Chief and team staffed with the most qualified candidates possible.  Chair VandeVegt noted that, from date of hire, it took six (6) months, regardless of a candidate’s background, to bring them  up to the rigorous standards of the Roseville Department.  Chair VandeVegt noted that meeting those training needs, and keeping them the best available remained a large part of attraction and retention for the Department.  Chair VandeVegt further noted that a large percentage of that training was done in off-hours time, requiring overtime payments; however, he noted that such training made the department shine beyond individual candidate skills.  Chair VandeVegt opined that current equipment needs were now looking good.


Mayor Roe thanked the Commission for their attendance, report, and ongoing work.


11.         Public Hearings


a.            Consider Approving an On-Sale Intoxicating Liquor License for Fantasy Flight Game Center at 1975 W County Road B-2, Suite 1, Roseville, MN

Finance Director Chris Miller briefly reviewed this requested liquor license, as detailed in the RCA dated September 9, 2013.  Mr. Miller noted that this business was a unique model in the City of Roseville; and advised that staff’s review and analysis of the application materials indicated that they were consistent with City Code requirements.


Councilmember McGehee questioned current operations versus those planned, with Mr. Miller indicating that the liquor license would be good from approval date, if applicable, through the end of 2013, with the applicant then going through any renewal process similar to other licensees within the City.  With concerns expressed by Councilmember McGehee’s related to staff training in serving liquor and how to monitor ages of patrons, Mr. Miller advised that the City would treat this application like any other, with City Code not distinguishing whether or not a business’s patrons were under age 21 or not, with no other restaurant having such restrictions imposed.  Mr. Miller reiterated that the applicant met all City Code requirements, and would also need to adhere to all state laws as applicable.


Brian Bromeiler, Fantasy Flight Game Center Representative

Mr. Bromeiler advised that the firm was renovating this new space, with the intent to move from their current Oakcrest address; and currently serve Zee Pizza and soda; but intended for full restaurant/bar service if approved.  Mr. Bromeiler noted that most of their games were in the range of $60.00 to $100.00 with extensive rule books, and primarily of interest to adult clients.


Mayor Roe opened and closed the Public Hearing at approximately 6:43 p.m.; with no one appearing for or against


12.         Business Items (Action Items)


a.            Consider Approving an On-Sale Intoxicating Liquor License for Fantasy Flight Game Center at 1975 W County Road B-2, Suite 1, Roseville, MN

McGehee moved, Etten seconded, approval of the request of Fantasy Flight Game Center, 1975 W County Road B-2, Suite 1, Roseville, MN for an On-Sale and Sunday Intoxicating Liquor License, for the period through December 31, 2013.


Mayor Roe welcomed the expansion of this business in Roseville; and noted that the applicant would need to provide and retain evidence of staff training on file and available for verification and review by the City’s Police Department at all times; expressing his confidence that the applicant was well aware of those requirements and their willingness to meet those standards.


                                    Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.


Mayor Roe recessed the meeting at approximately 6:46 pm to address technological issues, and reconvened at approximately 6:47 pm.


12.         Budget Items


a.            Receive Public Comment and Adopt a Preliminary 2014 Tax Levy and Budget

Staff Note: You may wish to include Finance Director Miller’s September 9, 2013 Power Point presentation with RCA for permanent record.


Finance Director Chris Miller provided a presentation of the Preliminary 2014 Budget & Tax Levy; cautioning that numbers be kept in context, with not all spending coming from tax-supported revenue sources.  Mr. Miller referenced items detailed in the RCA dated September 9, 2013, and related attachments.  In summary, the 2014 City Manager Recommended Budget for the tax-supported programs is in the amount of $23,008.060, an increase of $1,223,258 or 5.6% over that of 2013.  Of that amount, Mr. Miller advised that this represented a tax levy of $18,028,721 (programs, services and debt service), an increase in that levy of $758,895 from 2013, of a levy increase of 4.4%, with monthly impact to median value homes $4.47 per month.


Mr. Miller reviewed some of the reasons the City’s tax levy had outpaced inflation, including the recent recessionary period of stagnant or declining non-tax revenue, reduced interest rates, the reinvestment of additional asset replacements during 2008 to 2013 to address a lack of investment in capital improvement areas of the City over a ten (10) year period, including a significant street replacement and park facility construction program.  Mr. Miller noted that these redevelopment cycles were not unique to the City of Roseville, bur proved common among communities. 

Mr. Miller provided additional information, including comparisons with peer communities; a context of events over the last 15-20 years; ongoing deficit funding for the City’s Capital Improvement Program (CIP), with application of unanticipated Local Government Aid (LGA) funding in 2014, but not yet meeting long-term sustainability of the CIP and requiring further discussion.  Mr. Miller noted that, aside from a few select items, this budget did not include additional funding for City Council strategic plan or directives in continuing to address community visioning for Imagine Roseville 2015, but basically retained a status quo budget.

Public Comment

John Kysylyczyn, 3083 N Victoria Street

Mr. Kysylyczyn opined that the first page of the RCA and subsequent pages were misleading as to the actual levy increase.


Mayor Roe clarified that the 5.6% on page 1 was the increase to the spending side of the budget, as explained by Finance Director Miller during his presentation, with the 4.4% representing the increase to the tax-supported levy.


While not yet having an opportunity to review the proposed budget in detail, Mr. Kysylyczyn expressed his concern with the proposed 4.4% levy increase serving to grow government larger than the rate of inflation, with this proposed levy increase on top of previous annual levy increases, indicating a growing pattern.  While budget materials attempted to show a minimal monthly impact for taxpayers, Mr. Kysylyczyn noted that it added up to hundreds of additional dollars annually coming out of his family budget.  As a small business owner, and given the economy, Mr. Kysylyczyn advised that he was unable to raise his rates for his clients accordingly to meet those increases.


Specific to the proposed employee compensation adjustment also on tonight’s agenda, Mr. Kysylyczyn provided a bench handout, attached hereto and made a part hereof, referencing the City of Lexington and their intent to make an employee COLA of 2%.  Mr. Kysylyczyn advised that he was troubled by the proposed funds for employee compensation over a 2% COLA.  Mr. Kysylyczyn opined that his concerns were generally based on having tax-funded employees using taxpayer funds to generate a report to get more money for taxpayer paid employees, which appeared to be a conflict of interest to him, with no third party doing the study.  Mr. Kysylyczyn noted that the City of Lexington had used a labor management attorney for their study, and expressed concern that this study was biased, and did not provide any factual, hard-core information saying City of Roseville employees were not being paid enough for the jobs they were being asked to perform. 


Mr. Kysylyczyn stated that some 1uestions that he wanted answered included: does the City currently have a problem recruiting people to work; is the City retaining employees; does the City advertise jobs with no one or few applying; is the City retaining employees, and if so for how long.  Mr. Kysylyczyn opined that the study provided no information to address those questions; however, he noted that the previous presentation by the Police Civil Service Commission indicated that the Police Department, which was not part of the study as they were union, seemed to have an ample group of applicants and a good record of employee retention, suggesting that the City was paying a good wage and attracting too many qualified people.  However, Mr. Kysylyczyn opined that the study provided no information on non-union employees, while yet requesting that the City Council approve one of three significant options to increase employee compensation.  Mr. Kysylyczyn further opined that there was no evidence provided on competitive communities and their positions, or evidence to further support this request; again further opining that just because neighboring cities pay more, the City of Roseville shouldn’t.  Mr. Kysylyczyn opined that the study told him nothing, but the taxpayers were being asked to pay more, with a levy increase above the rate of inflation, just to give City employees a pay increase based on a study with no information to support it, and whether recruitment or retention is actually a problem.


No one else from the public appeared to speak.


Mayor Roe advised that specifics of the compensation study would be discussed when that item came up on the agenda; and focused this discussion on the three requested actions and resolutions for the budget itself, as outlined in the RCA.


Councilmember McGehee expressed her preference to address the questions brought up by Mr. Kysylyczyn at this time.  Councilmember McGehee clarified that the Employee Compensation Study had been done, not by a labor attorney, but by Springsted, a third party consulting firm.  While also noting that the Police Department appeared to have a great many applicants for vacancies in the department, Councilmember McGehee noted that as a union, they were operating at a 100% average with peer communities for their salaries/benefits unlike other City employees.  Councilmember McGehee stated that she agreed with Mr. Kysylyczyn that all of the factual information on employee retention and other numbers had not been provided, even though it would have been helpful to have available; however, she noted that the City did have evidence that one of its long-term employees had recently left employ at the City of Roseville for another metropolitan community at a very substantial salary increase.  Councilmember McGehee further stated that a majority of the levy increases being experienced by Roseville taxpayers right now were coming through as debt service for improvements and addressing infrastructure needs and improvements neglected during the periods when the levy was less than the Consumer Price Index (CPI), causing the City to now have to play catch-up for its reserve funds and other areas.



At the request of Councilmember Laliberte, Finance Director clarified the proposed employee Compensation Plan as recommended in the 2014 City Manager Recommended Budget, as detailed in the highlighted box on page 1 of the RCA.


At the request of Councilmember Etten, Mr. Miller confirmed that the 2% COLA related to all City employees, including those under union contracts, some of which were already in place for 2014 with others still to be negotiated.


At the request of Councilmember Etten whether it was possible to show union contracts to which the City was already bound, Mr. Miller advised that to his knowledge, only one (1) union contract had been approved for 2014 at this point, a status that was confirmed by Interim City Manager Trudgeon; with two (2) others yet to be approved but already in ongoing discussions.


At the request of Councilmember Etten, Mr. Miller opined that the 2% COLA set aside in the proposed budget was consistent with other union settlements for 2014, as well as those of other cities.


At the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Miller advised that part of the negotiation process was the review of peer cities, clarifying that unions were already at 100% of average peer cities, so their main concern was inflationary increases; thus management’s rationale in advocating for 2% COLA for all employees to keep them from falling further behind union compensation and attempting equity without further disparities.


At the request of Councilmember Etten, Mr. Miller confirmed that $400,000 was proposed to come from cash reserves toward the budget, as detailed in the RCA.  In referencing an e-mail from Mr. Miller to the City Council, Councilmember Etten questioned the percentage rolled into the levy increase; with Mr. Miller advising that recent public information provided by the State Department of Revenue several weeks ago somewhat changed the assumptions of available levy limits that the City had based their budget plans on, creating an increase.  However, Mr. Miller noted that, to his knowledge, staff was not advocating that the levy or budget increase significantly to take advantage of that available levy amount; but were retaining the City Manager Recommended Budget as originally presented.


Councilmember Etten stated that he was interested in the City Council, as a more honest way in his opinion to budget moving forward, moving some of that cash reserve amount to the levy, with additional levy or cash reserves in 2014, recognizing that this was not sustainable long-term, but providing a more open policy for transparent budgeting.


Mayor Roe noted that projections from 2013 through 2020 (page 4 of the RCA – Proposed Tax Levy & Estimated Impact) indicated an assumption of a 3% increase in operating costs, or $787,282 levy increase and that would incorporate that $400,000 in reserves.


Councilmember Willmus stated that he had no objection to using the $400,000 to off-set the levy; however, he agreed that it was not something that the City Council would want to do year after year and remain sustainable.  However, Councilmember Willmus opined that it would provide an opportunity to limit the burden on taxpayers, as the City just started to roll into full debt service payments, allowing use of the $400,000 to keep the non-debt portion of the levy in pace with inflation.  Councilmember Willmus clarified that he was not supportive of rolling the $400,000 into the levy.

Councilmember McGehee stated that she would not be supportive of it, as there was no point since the City was still continually underfunding the CIP going forward, if the figures provided by Mr. Miller were used to make the fund sustainable by 2020, the City was still not meeting the need, and she didn’t see any value in such a proposal.  Councilmember McGehee stated that she would support using some of the Recycling Fund reserves, removing $2 per residence in monthly recycling payments in addition to spending some reserves to offset impacts to individual homeowners.  Under that context, Councilmember McGehee stated that she would be happy to discuss the full $400,000 or any portion thereof; but reiterated her interest in bringing the City back to full funding of a minimum of $275,000 for its CIP.


Councilmember Laliberte stated that she would be open to the use of reserves, concurring that it was a more honest way to look at the levy for items needing continuing funding; and seemed more appropriate.  Councilmember Laliberte opined that the City’s reserves appeared to be healthy, indicating another plan and review of current reserve policy going forward.  Councilmember Laliberte stated that she was open to going through each item listed to determine a more honest approach between the levy and cash reserves.


Mayor Roe stated that he was not supportive of using reserves for ongoing costs, opining that at some point you eventually had to pay.  Mayor Roe stated that he was more comfortable using reserves this year, since reserve funds were healthier, even though they were not all up to the highest point of the current policy range.  Mayor Roe stated that he would consider using reserves from the Recycling Fund if that helped with the issue of which reserves were stronger and from where to take the money.  However, with $560,000 debt service going on line in 2014, Mayor Roe opined that it  did make sense to  use reserves for some expenses until 2014,  because this City Council would have the ability to follow-through.


Etten moved, McGehee seconded, applying $200,000 from cash reserves to the Preliminary Levy, thereby  increasing the taxpayer levy by $200,000.

Councilmember Willmus spoke in opposition to the motion.  Councilmember Willmus noted that the healthy reserve funds were due to overtaxing in the past, creating a level beyond what was needed to build those reserves, he opined that the responsible thing to do is to spend down in some of those accounts.  Councilmember Willmus opined that this levy as proposed served to keep pace with inflation; and stated that he would not support further increases as proposed with this motion.


Councilmember McGehee spoke in support of the motion, stating that she believed Councilmember Willmus was incorrect in his assessment of reserve funds.  Councilmember McGehee opined that, even though the City Council had a policy for reserves, they were insufficient creating the need to bond for a new fire station.  Councilmember McGehee further stated that this lack of planning and reserves also created the need for $200,000 in the CIP for the skating center as well as nothing in reserve for a new club house at the golf course.  If the City had funded its Park Improvement Program (PIP) sufficiently in that past, Councilmember McGehee opined that the City would probably not be facing this debt service now, but could have maintained the City’s park system.  With at least two (2) members of the current City Council having chosen to fund for these items without a public referendum, Councilmember McGehee opined that this had created the current need for paying this debt service.  In her personal review of reserve fund policies several years ago, Councilmember McGehee stated that she had found all but one fund to be in line with the recommendations of the State Auditor’s Office.  With that excess in the Recycling Fund, Councilmember McGehee opined that she had no problem using those reserves; but not to continue to underfund the CIP.  Referencing a comment made by Mayor Roe related to the City always bonding for buildings, Councilmember McGehee opined that this would not be necessary if funding was set aside.


Councilmember Willmus asked staff to provide additional information on total reserves versus specific reserve levels.


Finance Director Miller advised that previous information provided to the City Council was as of December 31, 2012, opining that not much had changed over the last nine (9) months, estimating the total City reserve level between $26 to $27 million.


Councilmember Willmus indicated that showed that the current reserves totaled $10 million above the current levy. Mayor Roe clarified that the reserve levels totaled about $8 million above the $18 million levy, not $10 million, of the $18 million levy, there was $8 million in reserves, with Councilmember Willmus opining that this resulted in some room to work with those reserve accounts.


Councilmember Laliberte expressed her appreciation for this discussion; stating that she would not support the motion, opining that it would be dishonest of her to take $200,000 and push it toward the tax levy, which she could probably not support as proposed.  Councilmember Laliberte opined that the City Council should support additional funding of the CIP..


Councilmember Etten recognized the positions of other Councilmembers, but stood by his proposed motion, opining that it allowed more openness, serving to eventually reduce the 2015 levy compared to current projections.  Councilmember Etten recognized that a number of the reserve funds were targeted toward specifics and not all available to spend, but opined that if the City Council chose to be upfront with the budget, it was appropriate to use those reserves as proposed.


Councilmember McGehee concurred with the comments of Councilmember Etten; and questioned Finance Director Miller on the percentage of reserves were earmarked and targeted as to how they could be spent.


Finance Director Miller clarified that all reserves were segregated in specific funds, with some legally restricted to certain applications, and estimated $5 million to be within those outside legal restrictions, with the rest having City Council discretion.  Mr. Miller advised that the General Fund had $5.5 million in reserves, with the other reserves segregated for other City programs and services, and cautioned that any reduction in those reserves would serve to impact those operations.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Miller confirmed the reserve in the General Fund was at 42% of the current reserve policy range of 35 – 45%..


Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee and Etten.

Nays: Laliberte, Willmus; Roe.

Motion failed.


Willmus moved, Roe seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 11092 (Attachment A) entitled, “Resolution Submitting the Preliminary Property Tax Levy on Real Estate to the Ramsey County Auditor for the Fiscal Year of 2014;” set at $14,328,721 for programs and services and $3,700,000 for debt service for a total tax-supported levy of $18,028,721.



McGehee moved, Etten seconded, a friendly amendment to the motion to add an additional $50,000 to the levy specific to the CIP.


Councilmember McGehee stated that she made this amendment, since 2 years ago, CIP funding was set at $275,000 and this would be an example of the City Council doing what they said it would do.


Councilmember Laliberte agreed that CIP funding should remain on track to avoid the reinvestment/redevelopment cycle every ten (10) years as addressed by Mr. Miller.  However, Councilmember Laliberte spoke in opposition to this amendment, as she had previously moved for the City Manager to provide a flat budget, not only looking at things that were wanted for addition, and allowing for conversation on what could be done more efficiently or better.  Even though that budget scenario didn’t materialize, Councilmember Laliberte advised that she would continue to support a flat levy budget as stated in July of this year.


Since the City Council was at the preliminary phase of setting this levy and only starting discussions that would continue through the remainder of the year, Councilmember Willmus advised that he could support the amendment.


Mayor Roe stated that he would not support the motion.  As a member of the CIP Task Force having made the recommendation for an annual CIP funding at $225,000, Mayor Roe advised that he was comfortable knowing that funding was reduced in 2014 as proposed in the CIP Task Force recommendation, opining that the delay would not set the fund up for a disaster in future years.


Councilmember Willmus recognized Mayor Roe’s comments, opining that he had swayed his original thoughts.


Councilmember Etten noted that this put another $50,000 in 2015, totaling $400,000; and questioned if this had that assumption built into it, with Finance Director Miller responding that it did include that assumption.


In writing off $450,000 this year, Councilmember Etten opined that this made the 2015 levy even larger; and questioned how the City could win long-term with this one-year deal creating a harder hit in 2015; further opining that it didn’t make sense to him to budget in that manner.


Councilmember McGehee concurred that it didn’t make sense, and further expressed her lack of understanding in the remark made by Mayor Roe.  Councilmember McGehee opined that if the City Council made a commitment, and what was the point of government commitments if they were not supported just two years and development and one year after reaffirmation.


In response, Mayor Roe reiterated comments he’d made several meetings ago to which Councilmember McGehee had also objected, opining that the City was only sustainable by the amount the City Council policy decisions made for building and pathway spending.  Mayor Roe clarified that the plan recommended by the CIP Task force and adopted by the City Council several years ago, as well built upon and reaffirmed last year required an annual review of 20-year projections..  Mayor Roe advised that he had recently performed his own analysis and was preparing a report for the City Council and public for presentation in the near future, supporting that the proposed 2014 funding would not significantly or negatively impact the CIP.


Councilmember McGehee, as a rebuttal, opined that it still didn’t make sense because all that had been funded was three (3) parts of the picture: the Police and Fire Department and Parks.


Mayor Roe clarified that the funding also included Water, Sewer, replacement of HVAC and mechanicals; all funded through phasing in fees over the last two (2) years with tax and base utility fee adjustments.  Mayor Roe opined that to categorically state that they were not funded because they were not part of the levy was incorrect.


Councilmember McGehee reiterated that she didn’t understand Mayor Roe’s rationale; and spoke in support of sustainability, opining that it had yet to be achieved nor was it within the City Council’s sights.


                                    Roll Call (Amendment)

Ayes: McGehee and Etten.

Nays: Laliberte; Willmus; and Roe.

Motion failed.

Roll Call (Original Motion)

Ayes: Willmus; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: Laliberte.

Abstentions: McGehee

Motion carried.


Willmus moved, Etten seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 11093 (Attachment B) entitled, “Resolution Directing the County Auditor to Adjust the Approved Tax Levy for 2014 Bonded Debt;” revising the 2014 tax levy for General Improvement Debt by $85,330.67.


                                    Roll Call

Ayes: Willmus; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.

Abstentions: McGehee; Laliberte

Motion carried.


Specific to the proposed budget resolution (Attachment C) and whether the City was statutorily required to adopt it at this time, Finance Director Miller advised that to not do so would be the first time he heard of a City not doing so.  Mr. Miller clarified that it provided the public with a context when receiving their taxpayer statements and public hearing notices for how the levy related to the overall budget.  Mr. Miller further clarified that the City Council had the option of adopting or modifying its budget at any public meeting throughout the year and to appropriate or  un-appropriate those monies at their discretion.


Willmus moved, Etten seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 11094 (Attachment C) entitled, “Resolution Adopting the Preliminary 2014 Annual Budget for the City of Roseville;” with a budget amount of $50,690,725, of which $23,008,060 is designated for the property tax-supported programs.


Councilmember Laliberte spoke in opposition to the motion, based on her rationale previously expressed with the previous motions.


                                    Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: Laliberte.

Motion carried.


Mayor Roe thanked Councilmembers for tonight’s good discussion, and stated that he looked forward to conversations going forward between this preliminary and the eventual final budget and levy.


a.            Adopt the 2014 Preliminary Housing & Redevelopment Authority (HRA) Tax Levy

Finance Director Miller briefly summarized the 2014 Preliminary HRA Levy request, as detailed in the RCA dated September 9, 2013.


For clarification, and with confirmation by Finance Director Miller, Councilmember and HRA Member Willmus noted that the HRA had the statutory authority to make adjustments to its annual HRA budget, with the City Council approving the levy. 


At the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Miller advised that the HRA had sought its maximum levy authority in 2012 and again in 2013, as it was doing this year to support initiatives of the City Council and HRA.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Miller advised that the total impact on a median single-family home for the City and HRA combined levies would be $66 per year, or $4.47 per month, an approximate percentage increase of 4.6% total.


McGehee moved, Etten seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 11095 (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 2014;” authorizing the amount of $703,579 to be collected in 2014 for purposes as outlined in Minnesota Statute, Chapters 469.001 to 469.047.


Councilmember McGehee noted the positive marketing by the HRA, and ongoing discussions of marketing and branding for the City; asking if there was any chance of co-mingling HRA and City funds for a total marketing package.


As noted during previous discussions, Interim City Manager Trudgeon noted that the HRA budget included $30,000 allocated toward City marketing efforts, as part of that cooperative marketing approach, with the HRA directly contributing those funds to the City of Roseville.


Councilmember McGehee expressed her support of the marketing efforts and process used by the HRA on the Dale Street project and other recent activities.


Councilmember Laliberte also credited the HRA for their ongoing efforts, and thanked them for putting money toward the City’s communication efforts going forward.  Councilmember Laliberte stated that she would be voting in support of this motion; and while always uncomfortable setting a levy at the maximum allowed, she hoped it could be reduced between this preliminary amount and its final iteration.

                                    Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.


13.         Business Items (Action Items)


b.            Perform an Abatement for Unresolved Violations of City Code at 1693 Ridgewood Lane N

Permit Coordinator Don Munson reviewed violations at this vacant single-family detached home, located at 1693 Ridgewood Lane N, as detailed in the RCA dated September 9, 2013; with the current owner identified as Francis A. Johnson, but in foreclosure and in redemption at this time set to expire in the near future.


Mr. Munson provided an update, including pictures, of current violations, including pool fending and building in disrepair (violation of City Code, Section 407.02.J) and accumulation of junk, debris and brush on the property (violation of City Code, Section 407.02.D).  Mr. Munson estimated that total abatement cost for removal of junk, brush and debris and repair of pool security fencing would be approximately $2,000.00.


Mr. Munson clarified that the abatement request was not intended to address all the violations, just those indicated in the RCA and visible to the public or addressing safety hazards.  Mr. Munson advised that the rationale for this limited abatement was based on discussions with the bank and their intent to make repairs at the end of the redemption period once they take ownership, and staff’s preference to avoid performing wasteful work.  Mr. Munson noted that this was a very nice home, and if it proved not to be marketable by the bank, staff could return at a future date seeking further action as applicable.


A brief discussion ensued regarding the extent of repairs intended for the fencing around the pool, with new posts intended to make it safe and presentable.


Laliberte moved, Willmus seconded, authorization to the Community Development staff to abate the public nuisance violations at 1693 Ridgewood Lane N by hiring general contractors to repair pool fencing and dispose of junk, brush and debris at an estimated cost of $2,000.00; with actual abatement and administrative costs billed to the property owner; and if not paid, staff is directed to recover costs as specified in City Code, Section 407.07B.


                                    Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.


c.            Perform an Abatement for Unresolved Violations of City Code at 170 County Road B West

As previously noted, this item was resolved prior to tonight’s meeting.


Mayor Roe recessed the meeting at approximately 8:13 p.m., and reconvened at approximately 8:21 p.m.

d.            Implement an Employee Compensation Adjustment

Mayor Roe noted that this item had been tabled from previous meetings for staff to provide additional information, as detailed in the RCA dated September 9, 2013, and related attachments.


Interim City Manager Trudgeon briefly reviewed the previous numerous discussions based in part on the initial Springsted Employee Compensation Study Update authorized by the City Council for non-union employees in 2012, with the bottom line indicating that the City of Roseville’s employee compensation were on average 4.6% below peer communities. 


Mr. Trudgeon asked that tonight’s discussion focus on two (2) specific items: whether or not the City Council wished to have a policy for employee compensation, and if so what it should look like and options to proceed.  As part of that policy discussion, Mr. Trudgeon noted that other city models were reviewed and provided in tonight’s RCA (Attachment A), noting that the research indicated that cities didn’t seem to have formal policies, finding a broad spectrum.  Mr. Trudgeon noted that the City of Roseville’s Employee Handbook specific to mentioned compensation without any ranges or percentages provided, but at the discretion of the City Council and City Manager as dictated by state law, etc.  Mr. Trudgeon noted that the current policy was at approximately 97% with additional compensation for merit pay, with the City currently paying about 95% rather than the 97% indicated.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that Mayor Roe’s original draft - without any language revisions as addressed at past meetings – had also been included as part of tonight’s discussion (Attachment B).


At the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Trudgeon advised that he continued to recommend a 4.6% increase as outlined in the report, with a staged approach in January and July of 2014; but was open to looking at other options as suggested by Councilmember Laliberte. 


Mr. Trudgeon advised that one option looked at by staff was to tie the compensation to the Consumer Price Index (CPI), with purchasing power based on the rate of inflation, and as provided in the RCA (pages 2 and 3), as well as staff providing an analysis on page 2 of the cumulative CPI versus non-union COLA for the City of Roseville.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that one staff recommendation was to track compensation with the CPI. 


Mr. Trudgeon noted that he and management staff continued to recommend a 2% COLA for 2014 as proposed in the budget to ensure that the City remained competitive with external markets, no matter what the decision made by the City Council on the compensation study results.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that this 2% COLA was also anticipated as union settlements were finalized, which also provided more import for not providing more inequities between union and non-union employees.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that he recognized perceptions and budget issues; however, he suggested that the City Council not lose sight of the bigger picture long-term. 


Mr. Trudgeon advised that the proposed options provided all included part-time firefighters, even though they were not included in the compensation study.  Mr. Trudgeon opined that it was his recommendation to include them and treat them as any other employee, without reverting to another external study; therefore he had lumped employees together, as he had gotten no sense of interest from the City Council in performing another study specific to firefighters.


Mr. Trudgeon referenced three options in the RCA (lines 68 – 103) for City Council consideration, and as further defined in lines 113 – 129; asking that the City Council give serious consideration to one of those options, and urging them to attempt resolution tonight or in the near future.  Mr. Trudgeon noted that considerable amount of time taken to-date by the City Council and staff in resolving the issue; opining that some resolution would be greatly appreciated by all parties.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Trudgeon confirmed that his 2014 City Manager Recommended Budget had provided for the “Competitive Plan (lines 119-123).  However, Mr. Trudgeon clarified that the numbers won’t match comparable numbers in the past that did not include the previously segregated firefighter numbers, with them needing to be added into the equation in updated figures.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Trudgeon advised that Human Resources Manager Eldona Bacon currently and internally tracked and weekly reported to him open positions and reasons for those openings, number of applicants, and other information.  Councilmember McGehee requested that the information be shared with Councilmembers as an annual summary as they made decisions on employee adjustments during the budget process.


Councilmember McGehee spoke in support of the Competitive Plan, as she had supported it from the beginning of these discussions.


At the request of Councilmember Etten, Ms. Bacon advised that annual merit pay allotments generally did get spent; and if she had previously led the City Council to believe they were not being used, apologized for that misconception.  Ms. Bacon addressed the inconsistency portion, suggesting that if the merit pay was continued going forward, those inconsistencies (e.g. how dollars were utilized, varying personalities of supervisors and Department Heads) needed to be addressed.


Mr. Trudgeon clarified that it appears that approximately $30,000 was spent annually on the merit pay compensation program if fully implemented.  However, Mr. Trudgeon advised that the number is actually much larger than $30,000, as the merit pay program was not being implemented to its fullest extent or as it was originally designed, primarily due to budgetary pressures.


At the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Trudgeon clarified that the merit pay program was not automatic.


Some confusion was expressed by Councilmembers regarding anticipated spending in 2013, as well as future years; with some believing the proposed $30,000 reduction in merit pay was going to be used to offset costs of the compensation plan.


Councilmember Etten opined that if the merit pay program was going to continue to be used, a future large discussion was needed on how it was used and the training needed to implement it effectively.  Councilmember Etten thanked Ms. Bacon for being very open about the inconsistencies; and questioned if information was readily available on how, when, or if the merit pay program was currently used.


While not being able to include a ten (10) year review for Councilmembers to reference, Ms. Bacon advised that it had been used, and costs for implementation range between $25,000 and $30,000.  Ms. Bacon advised that the full amount had not yet been utilized this year.  Ms. Bacon advised that each director is typically allotted a certain amount of dollars per department annually for those who may or may not qualify for merit pay.  However, Ms. Bacon advised that directors usually waited until December to determine which employees were their “rising stars,” with the supervisor then advising the Department Head, who advised her, and she advised the City Manager, who advised the Finance Director.  Ms. Bacon advised that the rationale for directors to use that merit incentive were where the inconsistencies came in, with one Department Head possibly recommending one employee, and another recommendation not coming from another Department Head for the same type of achievement.


At the request of Councilmember Willmus, Mr. Trudgeon and Mr. Miller confirmed that, as noted on page 3 of the RCA, the City had a 1% COLA in 2012, and a 2% COLA in 2013.


Addressing the trend from January 1, 2012 to July of 2013, at 3%, Councilmember Willmus noted that this would track with CPI data from his personal research; and if the 3.26% increase went forward for 2014, it would actually put the City on par with inflation.  Therefore, Councilmember Willmus questioned why the City would need to include another 2% increase for COLA.


Mayor Roe clarified that a different CPI number  was shown in the RCA for 2013, approximately 3.6% from 2012 to 2013; and questioned staff if there was a basis for the number provided in the packet as opposed to the number referenced by Councilmember Willmus.


Finance Director Miller clarified that the 2013 figure provided by staff was based on current trending, and the local inflation index for Minneapolis/St. Paul over the first six (6) months of 2013, all extrapolated over that six (6) month period, and then two (2) times inflation for the first six (6) months with the assumption that would continue to track for the remainder of 2013.


Councilmember Willmus noted that his figure from January through July tracked with Mr. Miller’s comments at 3.06%.  Therefore, Councilmember Willmus suggested using the 2014 figure would allow the City to keep pace, but staff was advocating for 5.26% total.


Mr. Trudgeon clarified that the differential isn’t over two (2) years, but over a period of ten (10) years; and roughly coincides with the original compensation study.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that the big question was how to  get caught up long-term.


Councilmember Willmus opined that, if using the CPI as the measuring stick, the City has kept pace.


Mayor Roe concurred that this was true in the very short-term, but not long-term over the ten (10) year period.

Ms. Bacon advised that the rationale in using the ten (10) year period was based on the previous compensation study ten (10) years ago that made the City achieve market rate; and using that as a starting point making the assumption that the City was at market rate, at which time the 97% and merit pay program was implemented; with it being that long ago that employee compensation was reviewed.


If looking at ten (10) years proved problematic, Councilmember Etten noted that while there was a difference, however, in some years the City exceeded the CPI, with differences occurring in 2011, but equaling out in 2012, but pulling apart in 2013.  In recognizing that in 2009, the City exceeded the CPI, Councilmember Etten suggested that when salaries were frozen at that time, that was when the differentials occurred.


Mr. Trudgeon noted, based on that chart, that the City was tracking well over the years until the historic change in the economy, causing the City to freeze salaries, and then dropping even lower; with the rate of increase for the CPI going up much more during that time.


Ms. Bacon noted that both COLA and CPI made inflationary assumptions based on wages at market rate; but the compensation study indicated that they were not actually at market rate any longer; suggesting that was where the difference came in.


Councilmember Laliberte expressed her understanding of what Ms. Bacon had explained and the differences.  However, Councilmember Laliberte advised that where she became lost in the discussion was the study itself; stating that over the last few months, she had lost confidence in the study.  While able to have the historical discussion, acknowledge the CIP and other assumptions, Councilmember Laliberte opined that when those discussions and assumptions were based on the study it had lost its truth for her, making it hard for her to base future decisions on this particular study.


Mayor Roe asked Councilmember Laliberte to share her specific concerns or problem areas with the study.


Councilmember Laliberte stated that, over the course of  previous discussions and things that were or were not included in the study, it had become unclear to her what was actually involved in the study; noting that there always appeared to be differing opinions of peer cities, with no one able to get past that.  When reviewing the actual numbers, Councilmember Laliberte opined that the City wasn’t necessarily off, but the study didn’t provide any data on whether or not or why people may be leaving.  While having the historical information available and attempting to keep pace with inflation made sense to her, Councilmember Laliberte noted that two (2) of the three (3) options proposed by staff included keeping the merit pay system in place, with one (1) option proposed to keep it even though history indicates that it isn’t a consistent system.  Councilmember Laliberte stated that she needed to feel confident that staff was sufficiently trained to implement such a merit program correctly before she could consider that as an option.


Mayor Roe opined that it was a valid question as to why two (2) of the options proposed kept the merit pay system in place while one (1) did not.


Mr. Trudgeon advised that it went back to the compensation study, and if understanding the thought, if an option was proposed that was not at 100% average of peer communities, there should be something in place to provide for the City’s star performers.  Mr. Trudgeon agreed wholeheartedly that it needed modification, and suggested that if that was what was holding up a decision on the compensation option, it be put in a separate place to work with existing staff and resurrect that to achieve agreement.  Mr. Trudgeon noted that a uniform application, with buy-in and a comfort level for all members of the City Council was reasonable.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that staff’s rationale for including the merit pay system in the options was due to not reaching a 100% competitive option; however, if 100% was reached, there was no reason to include the merit pay system component.


Councilmember Laliberte opined that there was a reason for including or not including merit pay; in theory and in practice; with Department Heads fully aware of and knowledgeable of the merit pay system and whether or not they’re supportive of it or not.  Councilmember Laliberte suggested that the discussion was back to two (2) different decisions: policy and implementation.


Mayor Roe suggested that the merit pay portion should be separated from that discussion.


Councilmember Laliberte concurred, opining that it should be excluded from both conversations.


Mayor Roe recognized the need for a decision on a policy; however, he expressed his interest in returning to a discussion of the study itself, and concerns of individual Councilmembers with that study, whether those concerns are shared across the body or not.


Councilmember Etten advised that he could support the CPI approach; and while understanding there were enough questions with the study to cause some concern; he opined that the Springsted presenter didn’t understand the City’s compensation system sufficiently; and everyone needed to get back to the big picture for compensating employees, including healthcare and other pieces of the puzzle.  Reiterating his support of the CPI approach, Councilmember Etten opined that this removed some of those questions from the process and outside the process.

At the request of Mayor Roe, Councilmember Etten clarified that he would support the CPI approach for implementation as well as a policy going forward.


Councilmember McGehee stated that she supported the CPI approach for compensation and going forward, she would support splitting the merit pay discussion from the compensation study.  Councilmember McGehee stated that the reason she was supportive of the Competitive Plan option as outlined in the RCA was because it was more in line with the CPI and what had been denied in past years.  Councilmember McGehee opined that the merit pay as described by Ms. Bacon and how implemented, or how slow employee reviews can be, served as an important piece.  Councilmember McGehee further opined that, if the City decided to have a merit pay piece, she would prefer the HR and Administration/Finance Department to develop a draft policy to make it fair and even organization-wide.  Councilmember McGehee stated that she was happy to separate this out and approve the CPI model going forward to achieve the same market rate as done ten (10) years ago; and then to separately work on the merit pay system.


Councilmember Willmus advised that he could support the CPI approach, as he’d discussed with staff for some time; expressing his appreciation for seeing the information presented in such detail.


Councilmember Laliberte concurred with the value in the detailed presentation.


Councilmember Willmus opined that both Councilmembers Laliberte and McGehee had raised good issues; with further refinement indicated in carrying forward the merit pay practice; further opining that that portion of the discussion be set aside from this portion.


Mayor Roe summarized Council consensus that the merit pay system needed to be looked at on the staff level and brought back for City Council consideration before going forward.  Mayor Roe further summarized that the CPI basis had support of the City Council majority in moving forward as a policy as well as for implementation.


Council consensus supported that summary.


Mayor Roe suggested banking that consensus and building from it.


Mayor Roe clarified that a determination was needed as to what CPI basis was used and when done for implementation.  Based on his personal analysis of CPI data, Mayor Roe stated that it verified the study results, and gaps when the City had not kept pace with the CPI, while recognizing that some of the gap may be a result of specific conditions having fallen through over the years. 


Mayor Roe sought consensus of the body on what CPI basis to use for 2014, or the preference was to implement it earlier than 2014.


At the request of Councilmember Etten, Mr. Trudgeon confirmed that if implemented immediately, cash reserves would be utilized to do so.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Councilmember Etten clarified that the gap for the “Moderately Competitive” option was at 3.26%.


Councilmember Willmus opined that, when looking at the full ten (10) years, percentages needed to be used, which he interpreted at 2.6% behind if implemented versus the 5.26% creating a scenario ahead of where it was needed to be.  Councilmember Willmus cautioned how things were applied.


Councilmember Etten noted that the 3.26% would bring the City back into the expected CPI in 2013, if immediate movement were made in that direction, with the additional 2% putting the City back in the marketplace.


At the request of Mayor Roe, Councilmember Etten spoke in support of immediate implementation and a policy going forward.


With concurrence by City Attorney Mark Gaughan, Mayor Roe suggested taking the actions in separate steps.


Policy Going Forward

Etten moved,  McGehee seconded, basing the employee compensation policy on the CPI with an annual review; and directing staff to bring a written policy forward to the City Council for review and future adoption.


After further discussion, Councilmember Willmus opined that the City Council didn’t need to draft a policy on the fly, but simply needed to commit whether or not that was the direction they wanted to go; and then provide clear direction to staff as to whether compensation should be adjusted immediately in 2013 or moving forward in 2014.


At the request of Councilmember Laliberte, Mayor Roe confirmed that this eliminated his previous draft policy in its entirety.


                                    Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.


Compensation Plan

McGehee moved, Willmus seconded, to accept the “Moderately Competitive Plan” as detailed in lines 113 – 117 of the RCA; providing implementation of a 3.26% adjustment,  to be implemented effective January 1, 2014 at the next pay period; and to reclassify eight (8) positions as previously indicated; and including part-time firefighters in the plan.


Councilmember Etten spoke in support of an immediate increase, noting the eight (8) identified job classifications that were so far behind; and to effectively show those employees that the City Council understood the situation.  Councilmember Etten opined that it was pretty clear in those few areas that the City was well out of line with averages, and would serve to send a clear signal to staff.



Mr. Trudgeon confirmed the language of the motion and City Council intent to adjust salaries at 3.26% for all non-union employees, including part-time firefighters to be implemented immediately, and to adjust the previously identified eight (8) positions for supplemental adjustment.


Mayor Roe concurred that this was the intent of the motion.


                                    Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.


On behalf of the City’s employees, Interim City Manager Trudgeon thanked the City Council for their unanimous support for this action.


COLA for 2014

Mayor Roe suggested that this item could be taken up during budget discussions and deliberations.


Laliberte moved, Willmus seconded, to consider 2% COLA as part of the broader 2014 budget discussions.


While part of him wanted to get it accomplished now, Councilmember Etten expressed confidence that it would be accomplished eventually.


Mr. Trudgeon opined that it made sense to consider it as part of the budget process.

                                    Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.


Merit Pay

McGehee moved, Laliberte seconded, directing staff to work on the preparation of a policy and procedure for merit pay distribution that staff can demonstrate as being equitable and enforceable; with part of that analysis whether or not staff wants to continue or discontinue the program and rationale for their recommendation.

                                    Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

Nays: None.


14.         Business Items – Presentations/Discussions


15.         City Manager Future Agenda Review

Councilmember Willmus requested that staff provide the preliminary budget information on the finance page of the City’s website as soon as possible.


For the benefit of the public, Mayor Roe clarified that anticipated discussion of organized collection was not to make a decision, but to respond to a 2012 request from the PWETC for direction.  Interim City Manager Trudgeon advised that, should the City Council choose to move forward with organized collection, staff was prepared to provide recent changes in legislation related to organized collection.


16.         Councilmember Initiated Items for Future Meetings

Mayor Roe expressed the City’s best wishes to former Roseville City Engineer Deb Bloom in her new employ with the City of St. Louis Park, MN; and thanked her for her positive work with the City of Roseville and its residents over the last fifteen (15) years.



Willmus moved, Etten seconded, adjournment of the meeting at approximately 9:17 pm.


                                                Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten: and Roe.

            Nays: None.