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City Council

City Council Meeting Minutes

January 27, 2014


1.        Roll Call

Mayor Roe called to order the Roseville City Council regular meeting at approximately 6:00 p.m. and welcomed everyone. Voting and Seating Order: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; Etten; and Roe.  City Attorney Mark Gaughan was also present.


2.         Approve Agenda

McGehee moved, Etten seconded approval of the agenda as presented.


               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, Announcements and Housing and Redevelopment Authority (HRA) Report

            Mayor Roe announced the upcoming 18th annual Living Smarter Garden Fair scheduled for Saturday, February 15, 2014, at the Fairview Community Center from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.  Mayor Roe noted that this free event had activities available for the entire family.


Mayor Roe announced the upcoming "Great Gatsby Gala" at the Ramsey County Library in Roseville, sponsored by the Friends of the Ramsey County Libraries, scheduled for Saturday, February 1, 2014, from 6:30 to 9:00 p.m.


          Councilmember Laliberte provided a brief update on the recent and well-attended Open House at the Roseville Library, hosted by Metro Transit, with attendees from the Cities of St. Paul, Falcon Heights and Roseville.  Councilmember Laliberte reported a good independent discussion between Metro Transit staff and residents, with requests for additional stops in Roseville made by residents.  Councilmember Laliberte advised that she had copies available, via the City Manager, of summary sheets from that meeting, with Metro Transit in the process of drafting a comprehensive list of comments heard to-date for distribution in the near future.  At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Councilmember Laliberte opined hat requests for extending the Bus Rapid Transit line along Highway 51 (Snelling Avenue) into the TCAAP area was most likely to be considered for future phases as TCAAP developed rather than at this immediate stage.


5.         Recognitions, Donations and Communications


a.            Proclaim February Black History Month

Mayor Roe read a proclamation declaring February 2014 to be Black History Month in the City of Roseville, inviting all members of the Roseville community to renew their commitment to ensuring racial equality, understanding and justice.


Laliberte moved, Etten seconded, proclaiming February 2014 to be Black History Month in the City of Roseville.


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 January 6, and January 13, 2014 Meetings

McGehee moved, Willmus seconded, approval of the January 6, 2014 Meeting Minutes as amended; and approval of the January 13, 2014 Meeting Minutes as presented.


Additional Corrections/Comments, January 6, 2014 Meeting Minutes:

·         Page 11, lines 15-16 (Roe)

Specific to ethics complaints, Mayor Roe clarified that the intent was to reference a "super" majority approach, currently part of the stricken text that needed reinserted and corrected.

·         Page 11, lines 12 - 13 (Laliberte)

Councilmember Laliberte clarified that she had asked the Ethics Commission Vice Chair if he felt, from the Commission's perspective, that the process still needed work when the entire City Council was named in a complaint that was subsequently brought to the City Council to address; and had asked the Vice Chair to further address that in their future review.  In order to reflect that statement and request, by consensus, that paragraph be revised as follows:

"At the request of Councilmember Laliberte, Vice Chair Lehman confirmed that, in hindsight, the process worked [needed additional work] from the perspective of the Commission."

·         Page 21 and forward (Roe)

Corrections from "CAC" to "Advisory Commission" should all be corrected to remove any apostrophes as applicable.


Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


7.            Approve Consent Agenda

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


a.            Approve Payments

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

ACH Payments


72566 - 72632





                                    Roll Call

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

            Nays: None.


b.            Approve Business Licenses & Other Licenses & Permits

          Etten moved, Willmus seconded, approval of business license applications for the period of one (1) year, for the following applicants:



Type of License

International Paper; 2425 Terminal Road

Recycling Hauler

*Dragon Divas; 305 Harbor Lane; Shoreview, MN

*To conduct raffle at Rose Vine Hall, 2801 Snelling Avenue N, Roseville, MN on March 30, 2014

One-Time Gambling Permit

Michelle Robinson; Kneaded to Relax

2585 Hamline Avenue N, #C

Massage Therapist

Markeesha Clark; Massage Xcape

1767 Lexington Avenue N

Massage Therapist

Yer Vang; Massage Xcape

1767 Lexington Avenue N

Massage Therapist

Kneaded to Relax; 2585 Hamline Avenue N, #C

Massage Therapy



                                    Roll Call

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

            Nays: None.


c.            Approve General Purchases and Sale of Surplus Items Exceeding $5,000

Etten moved, Willmus seconded, approval of the submitted list of general purchases and contracts for services presented as follows; and as detailed in the Request for Council Action (RCA) dated January 27, 2014; and Attachment A entitled, "2014 Capital Improvement Plan Summary - Updated 01/21/2014."









Commercial Asphalt

Asphalt Patching Materials




Commercial Asphalt

Asphalt Patching Materials



Storm Water

Commercial Asphalt

Asphalt Patching Materials




Ziegler CAT

Plate Compactor Attachment
















Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


Etten moved, Willmus seconded, approval of trade-in/sale of the following surplus item:



Item / Description


2008 Ford Pickup


                                    Roll Call

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

            Nays: None.


d.            Receive Update to Grant Applications Report

Etten moved, Willmus seconded, receipt of the quarterly City Grant Applications update.

                        Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


e.            Receive Shared Services Report

Etten moved, Willmus seconded, receipt of the quarterly Shared Services Update.


Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


f.            Adopt Resolution Supporting the County Request for Reconstruction of the Highway 96 and I-35W Bridge as well as the Interchange at County Road H and I-35W

Councilmember Laliberte sought clarification, with confirmation by staff, that the bridge had already been slated for replacement not repair.


Etten moved, Willmus seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 11125 (Attachment A) entitled, "Resolution of Support for Ramsey County's Request for TCAPP Road Improvements at I-35W / Highway 92 and I-35W / County Road H."


Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


g.            Consider Resolution to Assign Tax Increment Financing Note for TIF #19 (Applewood Pointe)

Councilmember Laliberte pointed out a typographical error in line of the Request for Council Action (RCA) and should be corrected to state that: "The assignment of the TIF Note does [NOT] change any part of the agreement or the development."


Etten moved, Willmus seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 11126 (Attachment A) entitled, "Resolution Authorizing the Execution of an Assignment of Tax Increment Financing Note;" from Applewood Pointe to PFI II, LLC, parent company of United Properties.


Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


h.            Adopt a Resolution Authorizing an Application for a MN DEED Grant for 2785 Fairview Avenue

Etten moved, Willmus seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 11127 (Attachment B) entitled, "Resolution of Applicant;" authorizing the submittal of a redevelopment grant from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) Redevelopment Grant application for the property located at 2785 Fairview Avenue.


Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


i.             Authorize Joint Powers Agreement with the Minnesota Department of Agriculture for Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) Research

Etten moved, Willmus seconded, authorizing a Joint Powers Agreement (Attachment A) between the City of Roseville and the Minnesota Department of Agriculture for Emerald Ash Borer (EAB) Research; allowing for reimbursement to the City for direct costs up to $4,000 to remove and dispose of suspect EAB-infested trees and/or portions of trees to conduct necessary research.


Roll Call

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

            Nays: None.


Councilmember McGehee thanked staff for pursuing these cooperative efforts, such as for EAB research, as well as another application to DEED in such a timely manner; as well as supporting the I-35W bridge reconstruction project.


8.      Consider Items Removed from Consent


12.         General Ordinances for Adoption


a.            Adopt Ordinance Amendments and Additions to Commission Chapters of City Code

At the request of Mayor Roe, City Manager Trudgeon briefly reviewed the Request for Council Action (RCA) dated January 27, 2014; seeking additional discussion and direction from the City Council for staff.  Mr. Trudgeon noted that in order for staff to bring this item back for immediate consideration, staff had attempted to incorporate previous discussions and feedback in drafting and revising proposed ordinances as applicable.  If the City Council chooses not to take action on this tonight, Mr. Trudgeon cautioned that it would have some impact on upcoming deadlines for advertising commission vacancies.  If there was not action tonight, Mr. Trudgeon asked that the City Council consider setting up a process to address that delay.


Councilmember Laliberte thanked staff for getting the process started so quickly, and sought feedback from other Councilmembers related to the purpose and function of the newly-created Finance and Community Engagement Commissions; along with expansion of the Public Work, Environment, and Transportation Commission from five to seven members.  Councilmember Laliberte, while wanting to expedite the process, proposed that the documents be acted upon at the February 10, 2014 City Council meeting to ensure they reflected all City Council thoughts and comments, without the need to wordsmith them at the dais tonight.


At the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Trudgeon advised that if adoption was delayed until February 10, 2014, it would impact advertising for vacancies with various media outlets, in order that all vacancies and openings could be identified, with the intent to then immediately advertise effective February 11, 2014.


Whether or not the ordinance were approved at tonight's meeting, Mayor Roe suggested that staff include these openings in the broader commission opening advertisement rather than delaying or separating them from other commission openings.


Councilmember McGehee seconded the preferences expressed by Councilmember Laliberte; and opined that she had no problem delaying the new Commission starts.  Councilmember McGehee further opined that the City's new Communications Manager should be responsible for wordsmithing them; however, she stated that it was important for the City Council to weigh in on duties and responsibilities of new commissions, and sought to ensure those combined thoughts were included.


Finance Commission (Chapter 207 - Attachment A)

Councilmember McGehee requested the addition under "duties and functions" to include their review of any project proposals coming before the City prior to the start of the 60-day official review period, with the purpose of providing a cost-benefit analysis for the activity and benefit to be realized by the community.  Councilmember McGehee opined that this was not necessarily all related to financial considerations, but in an effort to provide a better understanding of the project and become a formal part of the documentation following the project.


Specific to membership for this commission, Councilmember McGehee questioned the need for seven versus five members, especially since they were new commissions, and suggested that they may work better with a smaller number of members at their outset.


Community Engagement Commission (Chapter 208 - Attachment B)

Councilmember McGehee reiterated her comments on the proposed number of members for this initial start up.


Regarding the duties and functions (Section 208.04), Councilmember McGehee opined that Item A read more of a mission statement; and while she had no problem with Items B through D, she wasn't sure that the commission's role was to develop policies and processes, but to make recommendations.  In Item F, Councilmember McGehee questioned if that commission was intended to serve as a liaison, when the Fire and Police Departments were already performing that role; and wanted to ensure that they weren't tripping over well-established areas.  Regarding Item G, Councilmember McGehee opined that the commission could advise the City Council on policy matters, but they needed to go through channels rather than coming directly to the City Council, similar to that used by other existing commissions.  Regarding Item H, Councilmember McGehee agreed that the commission could identify barriers and problems; however, she opined that it was not their job to remove existing functions (e.g. annual "Night Out" event), with emergency response teams (CERT's) already in place.  With Item L, Councilmember McGehee questioned what "encouraging fellowship and relationship building" actually meant.  For Item M, Councilmember McGehee spoke in support of including annual training/conferences in budgets; however, she didn't think it needed to be done annually.  Specific to Item N, Councilmember McGehee spoke in support of engaging the rental population as a much needed effort; and also supported Item O for finding opportunities to communicate in a variety of ways and languages, opining that this item needed further expansion.


General Comments

Councilmember McGehee expressed her interest in a subsequent review by Communications staff on all commissions to provide consistency and commonality in wording and duties in consistent formats.  For example, Councilmember McGehee noted that not all commissions had a Vice Chair role, which she considered preferable.


Finance Commission

Councilmember Willmus stated that he was intrigued by that commission looking at development proposals for a cost benefit analysis, something touched on by he and Councilmember McGehee periodically over the last few years; and asked staff how that would work related to timing of proposals.


City Manager Trudgeon opined that, his initial thoughts were that it would be similar to park dedication fees, and the developer approaching the Parks & Recreation Commission for feedback as part of the application process, but prior to their submission of the application to the Community Development Department and starting the 60-day formal review period.  While that process worked under those limited situations, Mr. Trudgeon questioned the value of a cost benefit analysis, as it was difficult to determine a working model, as evidenced in his work over several years with the University of MN and other communities in establishing such a format.  Mr. Trudgeon opined that it would take a tremendous amount of time, and had not been accomplished to-date.  To consider punching in numbers for a cost benefit analysis, Mr. Trudgeon questioned how a commission would work on that, since it seemed to be more of a staff model to input data and provide a report, provided the data input and formula were accurate.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that he would need to hold further discussions with Finance Director Miller and his staff to determine if that was a workable option and could or should be part of the duties of the Finance Commission.

Councilmember Willmus expressed his interest in more research and exploration on that and a future report.


Regarding Item A, Councilmember Willmus expressed interest in the group function equally on short-term issues and long-term planning.


At the request of Mr. Trudgeon as to what he considered short-term, Councilmember Willmus responded that he considered it to be the current budget calendar and process in any given year.


At the request of Mr. Trudgeon regarding whether that meant their review of the steps in that process or their direct involvement, Councilmember Willmus responded that he would like both included.


Councilmember Willmus noted that there were some comments submitted on January 6, 2014 that had been omitted, specific to transparency in the process; with those items needed for inclusion in the duties and functions section.


Community Engagement Commission

Councilmember Willmus echoed many of Councilmember McGehee's comments, bearing in mind that this commission would be advisory to the City Council, and where those duties were stated otherwise, corrections needed to be made.


Councilmember Etten concurred with the comments of Councilmember McGehee related to the Community Engagement Commission; that some of those duties went over the line of the function of an advisory commission.


Finance Commission

Councilmember Etten suggested the addition of another item in Section 207.04 Duties and Functions: "Reporting methods and communication to make yearly budgeting processes and documents more open and understandable for the public;" to encourage more transparency, with the intent for someone with a background knowledge in finance to make the documents and process more easily understood by the general public.


Regarding the cost benefit analysis proposal of Councilmembers McGehee and Willmus, Councilmember Etten expressed some concern, questioning how the timing would work; and while he concurred that this should always be part of the evaluation and consideration of any proposal, he opined that it would take a lot of staff time and may be hard to task a commission to put every project under such scrutiny.


General Comments

Regarding the number of members being seven versus five, Councilmember Etten noted that the City Council majority had agreed with seven members for the PWETC, as well as seven members for the Community Engagement Commission to allow sufficient people to attend events.  Councilmember Etten spoke in support of seven members for each commission to round things out; however, from his perspective, he noted that Finance Commission had been proposed at five members based on the specificity due to the preferred professional background.


Finance Commission

Councilmember McGehee spoke in support of Councilmember Etten's addition of Item D to address clarity and transparency; and spoke in support of his recollection of the number of members for each respective commission. 


Councilmember McGehee reiterated her interest in a cost benefit analysis, clarifying that she was not intending a formulaic form to plug in numbers, either by staff or the commission; but for major projects (e.g. Target or WalMart as examples), and a review of additional city services that would need to be provided  Councilmember McGehee opined that there were a lot of things that would be supported in the community that weren't necessarily on the plus side of the ledger, but may be needed for a well-rounded community; and this would be addressed with a more free-flowing analysis, not a formulaic analysis to determine their value to the community.


Community Engagement Commission

Councilmember Laliberte expressed her agreement with the majority of comments heard tonight; and concurred that, at first glance, she found things listed in the Community Engagement Commission ordinance to be more than advisory, causing her pause.  Councilmember Laliberte also concurred with her preference for more short-term versus long-term reporting for the Finance Commission as her goal.


Councilmember Laliberte noted that, as a member of the subcommittee, when she first proposed her recommendations on January 6th, she had supported a civic engagement commission and questioned the body on their preference.

Councilmember Willmus expressed his personal preference that it remains "Civic Engagement Commission" as it provided consistency over time with where the City had been and where it was going; although he admitted it may be splitting hairs in the long run.


Councilmember McGehee stated that it was splitting hairs; and advised that she didn't have a strong feeling either way.  However, when she considered the term "civic," she looked at it as getting people involved in government, while she considered "community" as getting people involved in their community; therefore making her inclined to stick with "Community Engagement Commission."


Councilmember Etten concurred with those comments of Councilmember McGehee, supporting "Community Engagement Commission."


Mayor Roe noted one solution would be to call it "Civic and Community Engagement Commission;" however, he expressed his preference that it be "Community Engagement."


Finance Commission

Mayor Roe thanked Councilmember Etten for his language on the Finance Commission (Item D), noting that it was along the same lines he intended to suggest.  Mayor Roe expressed concern in attempting a free-form cost benefit analysis and review of development proposals; expressing his preference for a formulaic analysis, opining that it would be helpful to have something at the start to inform those types of applications.


Community Engagement Commission

Mayor Roe concurred with those items that were not within the realm of an advisory role, but in fact the role of the City Council.  Mayor Roe opined that there were not actually that many duties or functions remaining in this list, and offered to provide his notes and comments to staff before redrafting a subsequent ordinance.


General Comments

Councilmember McGehee asked that, when it came back as a future iteration, it include all commissions in this new format; and concurred with Mayor Roe that a briefer list of duties and a clean demarcation of duties was prudent for all commissions.


Councilmember Etten opined that all commissions should be advertised together for clarity and proceeding forward in one direction; and suggested that it be put in place on February 10th when staff returned with revisions. However, Councilmember Etten suggested that applications for all commission, including the Finance and Community Engagement Commissions, could be advertised on February 1st as originally proposed by staff; with finalizations in duties and functions made after that advertisement.


Finance Commission

City Manager Trudgeon sought clarification on the number of members determined for this commission.


Councilmember Willmus spoke in support of seven members to allow sufficient membership as members resigned or rolled off; still allowing the commission to function with a broad enough perspective that the role of the commission was not diminished during the transition.


General Comments

Councilmember Willmus spoke in support of seven members for all commissions.


Mayor Roe suggested, if all commissions were proposed at seven members, further discussion could ensue during ordinance consideration.


Community Engagement Commission

In referencing her notes, Councilmember Laliberte noted seven members, plus one youth member was indicated for this commission.


Regarding duties and functions based on the discussion at the January 6th meeting, Mayor Roe noted his intent that the commission also be involved with the community visioning process, with his language being: "advise the City Council on development, documentation, publicity and periodic review; and serve as the steering committee for future updates to the visioning process." Mayor Roe suggested that this be included as he originally intended.


Councilmember McGehee concurred, other than for them serving as the steering committee for a larger visioning project, such as the vision or comprehensive plan process.

General Comments

Councilmember McGehee noted that there were times the City Council found it difficult to fill five vacancies, let alone seven; and opined that she was not convinced seven members were necessary or doable, especially those new commission just starting out.


Finance Commission

Councilmember Willmus suggested further discussion on February 10th, at which time he may be willing to reconsider his position on the size of membership.  Councilmember Willmus opined that he thought it would be beneficial to have 2-3 members with very solid financial backgrounds or professional certification in the field; as well as members of the general public, and having seven members would provide a broader perspective, and was causing him to lean in that direction.

Councilmember Laliberte concurred, noting that another advantage of having seven members allowed varying terms to rotate members rather than having to start over with a clean slate.  Councilmember Laliberte agreed that all seven members didn't need to have professional financial expertise. 


Councilmember Etten, in referencing the January 6th meeting minutes, noted that the discussion at that time mirrored tonight's discussion, and suggested membership of five or seven be discussed at a later date, but with a firm understanding on what qualifications should be sought for this commission.  Councilmember Etten stated that he was not sure he was ready to provide that exact language right now, but opined that the City Council should do so.


General Comments

Councilmember Laliberte further agreed that advertising for all commissions should be done at once, including the new commissions.


Councilmember Willmus reiterated his preference for seven members on commissions to allow them a huge advantage in creating subcommittees for more specific issues and research in a timelier manner.


Finance Commission

Mayor Roe noted that in the Establishment/Membership portion of the ordinance (Section 207.01), the language indicating the number of members included the statement could be revised to include language such as, "at least some of whom SHALL have accounting or financial backgrounds," allowing the City Council some discretion. 


City Manager Trudgeon reviewed and clarified proposed changes for next iteration, including the need for initial staggering of terms; and questioned whether the City Council would consider those one-year shorter terms to be partial or full term for future consideration of reappointment.  Mr. Trudgeon noted that it often took members that first year to get familiar with the work of a commission, and if they were able to recognize that they were initially signing up and most likely would be reappointed, it may be more beneficial, especially with the Finance Commission with the budget process and timing of creation of the commission and bringing people on board.  Mr. Trudgeon opined that it would be challenging to jive creation of the commission with the budgeting process, and a lot of time may need to be spent initially going over documents. 


Given that scenario, Mr. Trudgeon recommended that the first year of the Finance Commission be dedicated to dialogue with staff and tuning in during 2015 for the 2016 budget cycle.


General Comments

Also, Mr. Trudgeon suggested that, while much of the cost for creating these two new commissions would be absorbed by staff, there would be incidental costs (e.g. copying and event sponsorship), which the City Council should keep in mind for future budget projections.


Further, Mr. Trudgeon noted that interviews by the City candidates was typically done at the first part of a regular meeting; however, with an additional potential for 16 new positions, in addition to the other vacancies or openings, Mr. Trudgeon suggested that the City Council consider a separate special meeting, with staff prepared to suggest some dates and times to program them in.


If the City Council was comfortable in changing the PWETC to seven members, and changes proposed for the indemnification definitions, Mr. Trudgeon suggested that the City Council consider approving Attachments B and E tonight.  Referencing Attachment C, Mr. Trudgeon noted that would take further review and revision to address impacts to the Human Rights Commission, and suggested it be taken up at a later time with additional discussions for the Community Engagement Commission.


Finance Commission

Regarding the this commission not being up to speed until 2015, Councilmember Willmus spoke against further delaying their involvement in the budget process, opining that he anticipated those serving would be capable of being brought up to speed rapidly, and encouraged that they be involved in the 2015 budget cycle as well, seeing no major concerns, but allowing for any necessary adjustments.  To have the intent at the start to not have them involved until the 2016 budget cycle, Councilmember Willmus opined that this was too far out on the time line for his comfort.


Councilmember Etten concurred with Councilmember Willmus regarding the timing and involvement in the 2015 budget process; even though he didn't see them prepared to offer any recommendations for policy changes that might affect the budget immediately, but opined that it wouldn't hurt the budget process any, and while many people may understand budgeting, a natural delay may become evident, but should not be purposely delayed at the start.


Councilmember Laliberte concurred, opining that while they may not make immediate suggestions, they would be able to roll up their sleeves and have a voice in the process, an important consideration.


Mayor Roe concurred, opining that they could plug into the process as they felt appropriate, and suggested they be part of the process as much as they felt comfortable in doing.  Mayor Roe further opined that, as far as documentation was concerned, improvements may be evident through the initial involvement of the commission and be a natural occurrence.


General Comments

Councilmember Laliberte concurred that all changes be done as one, specific to Attachments B and E.


Finance Commission

Councilmember McGehee concurred that the things intended for this commission to make the budget more transparent and easier to understand, were more likely to come from the commission's involvement as they work through understanding it themselves.


McGehee moved, Willmus seconded, enactment of Ordinance No. 1459 (Attachment D) entitled "An Ordinance Amending Selected Text of Sections 205.01 (Establishment and Membership) of Title 2, "Public Works, Environment and Transportation Commission" of the City Code;" and enactment of Ordinance No. 1460 (Attachment E) entitled, "An Ordinance Amending Title 1, Chapter 105, Section 105.1 of Indemnification."


Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


McGehee moved, Willmus seconded referring remaining draft ordinances to the City Manager and staff for revisions as discussed tonight, including changes to make all commission documents consistent; with those drafts provided to the City Council for their review prior to the February 10th meeting, and scheduled for final approval at the February 10, 2014 City Council meeting.


At the request of Councilmember Laliberte regarding the extent of those revisions, Councilmember McGehee clarified that she intended that her motion include ALL revisions discussed.

Mayor Roe advised that such an all-encompassing intent may change his support of the motion, given the amount of staff time required to accomplish that request, especially with commissions that already exist.  Mayor Roe opined that it would be prudent to review them as time allows; however, he expressed concern in asking staff to do so now to make them all consistent.


Friendly Amendment

Mayor Roe offered a friendly amendment that only the two new commissions be revised at this time; with the others reviewed after the adoption of the 2 new ordinances.


The makers of the motion accepted this friendly amendment.


                   Roll Call (as amended)

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

Nays: None.


Finance Commission

City Manager Trudgeon asked that the City Council think about their intent and have an ensuing discussion at a future meeting regarding whether the Finance Commission was to review all Department Head budgets and make recommendations to the City Council, or to be involved in the steps and review those budgets for clarity and transparency as the City Council considered them.  In other words, whether the City Council's intent was to have the commission at the table with Department Heads at the staff level before information was brought to the City Council. 


Councilmember Willmus suggested that, as the commission was established, that should be one of their first discussion points, with some of the process being self-guiding.  Councilmember Willmus opined that he would be comfortable if they wanted to get into each department in-depth; and suggested further discussion on February 10th included the best time for this group to meet, opining that it may be better suited to meeting earlier in the day or after work; but also to make sure those meeting times remained cognizant of staff and Department Head time and schedules.


Councilmember Laliberte opined that staff should not be required to duplicate their efforts for the advisory commission and the City Council; but her intent was that the commissioners watch the Department Head presentations to the City Council to begin with.


Mayor Roe, as a point of clarification, questioned if Mr. Trudgeon intended that the commission be involved earlier in the budget process at the staff level with Department Heads prior to presentation to the City Council; to which Mr. Trudgeon responded affirmatively.  Mayor Roe questioned if the commission would actually want to get involved that early in the process.


Councilmember McGehee opined that this commission would prove most helpful in interfacing with the final budget and the public and route questions through a liaison person.  Councilmember McGehee opined that she saw no need for them to attend Department Head meetings.


13.         Presentations


14.         Public Hearings


a.            Approve/Deny a Brew Pub Off-Sale Liquor License for Granite City located at 851 Rosedale Center #1005

Finance Director Chris Miller briefly reviewed the request by Granite City Food & Brewery for a Brew Pub Off-Sale Liquor License at 851 Rosedale Center #1005.  Mr. Miller clarified that this step was not a reflection of any change in operations at Granite City, as they continued to operate as a multi-tiered liquor licensee, both for on- and off-sale licenses.  Mr. Miller advised that the action being brought forward was simply a change in previous staff interpretation, and subsequent discussions with the State regarding licensing requirements, with the State indicating that Granite City should have a Brew Pub License.  Mr. Miller advised that this would be added to the annual liquor license renewal process under this new interpretation.


No one from Granite City was present to speak.


Mayor Roe opened and closed the Public Hearing at approximately 7:15 p.m.; with no one appearing for or against.


15.         Budget Items


16.         Business Items (Action Items)


a.            Approve/Deny a Brew Pub Off-Sale Liquor License for Granite City located at 851 Rosedale Center #1005

McGehee moved, Etten seconded, APPROVAL of the request of Granite City for a Brew Pub Off-Sale Liquor License at 851 Rosedale Center, #1005 for the period ending December 31, 2014.


Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


b.            Consider a Request to STAY the Transfer and License Renewal of an Off-Sale Liquor License to Minnesota Fine Wines & Spirits, LLC (Total Wine & More)

Bench handouts specific to this item, included a revised draft resolution (Attachment A); and written public comments dated January 24, 2014 to the Roseville City Council and City Manager received from Ms. Wendy Thompson attached hereto and made a part hereof,


At the request of Mayor Roe, City Attorney Gaughan reviewed the background of the transfer and renewal; and subsequent action of the Minnesota Licensed Beverage Association and Stephens Liquor Store (a/k/a Fairview Wine & Spirits) bringing legal action to the Minnesota Court of Appeals, contesting the City Council's decisions. Mr. Gaughan clarified that this was not a reconsideration of the City Council's actions taken in December, but since the request was for appellate review of that action, the entities referenced above were requesting the City Council to STAY their decisions pending the outcome of the appellate court.


City Attorney Gaughan advised Councilmembers that there were three options available to the City Council: 1) to deny the request to stay enforcement; 2) to grant to stay enforcement; or 3) to grant the request but condition it upon the Minnesota Licensed Beverage Association and Stephen's Liquor Store to provide security to preserve the value of the license to the license holder.  Mr. Gaughan noted that, if the license holder intends to begin operations this spring, there may be some financial impacts to them if the license is not enforceable at that time. 


City Attorney Gaughan advised that the City Council may wish to take testimony from all parties with a stake in this issue; and in this body's role as a quasi-judicial authority, they needed to base their action on specific findings of fact.  Mr. Gaughan advised that a draft resolution to that effect, including blanks for those findings, was included as a bench handout at tonight's meeting.  Mr. Gaughan advised that, no matter the decision whether to stay or not, the parties could bring a motion forward to the Court of Appeals, requesting a stay of enforcement.  Mr. Gaughan advised that the next step would be if the parties wanted to continue to pursue this under those legal remedies; but it would be appropriate for the City Council to hear from the requesting entities and from others with any potential direct impact on the face of the City Council's decision tonight.


At the request of Councilmember Etten, Mr. Gaughan addressed ramifications if the appellate court found that the City Council had been wrong in transferring and renewing the license.  City Attorney Gaughan advised that those ramifications would depend on the particulars of any appellate decision, one of which may be that they return the matter to the City Council for a further decision, opining that it would be his expectation if the Board of Appeals felt the transfer and renewal had some defect, that they may want this body to hash it out or bring to some conclusion.  Mr. Gaughan noted that it may be possible that the Board of Appeals may also determine that the decision should not have been made in 2013 and allow the appeal to continue on, with a potential for the Court to determine that Total Wine & Spirits is not eligible for a license.


City Attorney Gaughan's opinion was provided in Attachments B and C to the RCA via memoranda addressed to the City Council, and respectively dated December 24, 2013, and January 23, 2014.


Mayor Roe briefly reviewed protocol for testimony at this time; and called first on the Requester(s) for the stay.


Tamara O'Neill Moreland, for Larkin Hoffman Daly & Lindgren Ltd.

Attorney representing Minnesota Licensed Beverage Association and Stephens Liquor Store, Inc. (Relators)

Ms. O'Neill's written responses were included as Attachments B and D and dated December 20, 2013, and January 20, 2014, respectively.


Ms. O'Neill Moreland briefly reviewed the appeal process to the City Council, and court rule requirement, addressed in her written submission providing why they believed they should grant a stay.  Ms. O'Neill Moreland opined that this boiled down to public safety and the issue of their request to the court to reversed the City Council's decision and no longer have the license in existence versus having someone in the community operating under a license not validly granted.


Ms. O'Neill Moreland noted that the other issue was one of security, within the discretion of the City Council and reviewable by the Court of Appeals; opining that while the City Attorney had said the action was intended to protect the licensee, instead she referenced the City Council to the actual wording of court rules that the security was to protect he respondent (i.e. the City), and that the licensee is not a respondent unless they were to intervene in the action, but not currently or legally the respondent.  Ms. O'Neill Moreland opined that the security was to protect the City; and advise that they attempted to estimate those license fees that seemed to be the extent of potential damage to the City.


Frank Ball, Director of the Minnesota Licensed Beverage Association was present, but provided no additional comment beyond those of Ms. O'Neill Moreland.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, and based on appellate court action, Ms. O'Neill Moreland confirmed that if the petitioners sought a stay, they needed first to appear before this body, and if unsuccessful here, then return to the Appellate Court.

Minnesota Fine Wine & Spirits, LLC/Total Wine & Spirits (License Holder) Representatives Mark Jacobson, Attorney with Lindquist and Vennum: and David Tron, Managing Partner of Minnesota Fine Wines & Spirits


Mark Jacobson

Mr. Jacobson pointed out several other attorneys in the audience as part of the legal team for the license holder.


As the firm most affected, Mr. Jacobson stated that they were in opposition to the stay.  Mr. Jacobson opined that the City Council had made their decision and it should go forward.  Mr. Jacobson noted that the effect of a stay would be to undo that decision.  Mr. Jacobson further opined that this appeal was very strange, since it was odd to have an appeal to granting a liquor license come from an association working with liquor stores.


Mr. Jacobson advised that they would file tomorrow for a dismissal of the appeal, since a requirement of an appeal was that you serve every adverse party; and only after the Court of Appeals found Total Wine an adverse party, were they served; however, the landlord was never served, and he obviously also had an interest.  While that may sound simply like a technical glitch, Mr. Jacobson opined that, the reason he thought the landlord was not served was to avoid an obligation for the parties to put up any security or bond to ensure those bearing the brunt remained whole. 


Mr. Jacobson opined that he was confident the Court would affirm the City Council's decision and that a stay would be in error; and further opined that their motion to dismiss will end the appeal.  If that does not happen, Mr. Jacobson opined that they expected to prevail.  Mr. Jacobson opined that the City Council had done their due diligence and their duty in properly granting the transfer to Minnesota Fine Wines & Spirits and renewal of that license; and therefore saw no reason to effectively grant a stay or relief from that decision.


In addressing one of the reasons for the stay from the relators being public safety, Mr. Jacobson noted that their letter didn't identify what that public safety issue was: if sales to minors, intoxicated people, or events crating a public safety issue; and further noted that they had not seen any allegations to that effect.   Mr. Jacobson opined that there was a good reason that there were no allegations available, as Total Wine & Spirits and Minnesota Fine Wines & Spirits, with over 100 stores nationwide, some in operation since the 1980's or 1990's, had operated with the vast majority never having received any such violation.


Mr. Jacobson addressed what would happen if the City Council chose to grant a stay: with citizens, for a period of time, deprived of having a tenth liquor store; and for a period of time, those employees already hired for the Roseville store not being employed in Roseville.  Therefore, Mr. Jacobson opined that, if the city Council granted the stay, the people of Roseville wouldn't get the benefit of the decision the City Council made several months ago.


In specifically addressing the bond or security, Mr. Jacobson sought to clarify that the reason for a bond is simple, that a stay is unusual, and if the City Council granted one, even though having originally supported the license, but now taking it away until the Court of Appeals made a decision; the bond served as an obligation to make the party whole if the Appeals Court agrees with the City Council decision, including Total Wine & Spirits and their landlord.


Referencing the comments of City Attorney Gaughan in his correspondence, Mr. Jacobson noted that, whatever decision the City Council made on the stay, it would be appealed; also any decision of the Court of Appeals, probably to the Supreme Court, thereby making a realistic timeframe for resolution a minimum of one year.


Mr. Jacobson provided a bench handout, attached hereto and made a part hereof, providing estimated costs if such a delay was to occur, of critical importance to his clients.


David Tron

Mr. Tron reviewed the bench handout by category for real estate-related costs, facility operating expenses, carrying costs, and payroll costs.  Mr. Tron stated that their team members, a/k/a/ their employees, were a key part of their company's success.  Mr. Tron advised that his family had been in the business for 30 years; 22 years since the first wine, beer and spirits store was opened; having gone from a one-store operation building to over 100 stores over 15 states, with approvals across the county.  Mr. Tron opined that the success of their business is their focus on the customer, from hiring the best and training, training, training; with 40-50 employees per store - depending on volume - and 75% of those team members being full-time employees.  Mr. Tron opined that their company was company was committed to providing their employees with benefits, a crucial step in getting the best people and service.  Mr. Tron noted that this was often not appreciated by their competitors.  Through their firms' selection and focus on customers, Mr. Tron noted that they had been named by three different trade groups in the industry as the Best National Retailer three times. Mr. Tron noted that their firm donated over $4 million to nonprofits in communities in which they work, and further noted that they believed in becoming involved in those communities.  Mr. Tron noted that this business model had met with long-term success and never having had to close a store. 


Mr. Tron advised that this cost is significant if opening is delayed; but the firm would work to hold those employees on board if already invested in and trained, such as they had done in the City of Bloomington, with those management employees still being paid but traveling elsewhere to their other locations in order for the firm to retain them.  As stated by Mr. Jacobson, Mr. Thon stated that he found no reason to grant a stay, which would hurt their firm significantly.  If the City Council was to grant a stay, Mr. Thon opined that a bond should be required to make their firm whole if the court concurs that the City Council had made the right decision in the first place.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Tron confirmed that the management employees hired in Bloomington had been provided an opportunity to work at their facilities elsewhere.  Mr. Tron noted that merchandisers and cashiers, their lowest paid employees, had to be laid off, but all management and service people were now working elsewhere in other states.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Tron responded that merchandisers and cashiers were typically paid in the range of $10 to 13, with overtime offered if interested; and store managers typically made about $60,000 to $90,000.


At the request of Councilmember Laliberte, Mr. Tron advised that the intent had been to open in middle or late march of 2014, with the store currently under construction.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Tron clarified that the landlord was doing the remodeling, with the license holder responsible for the costs of the F/F/E (fixtures, furniture and equipment) of approximately $1.1 million, with inventory purchases anticipated at approximately $2 million.  While the landlord could speak for themselves, Mr. Tron estimated that they would be investing between $1 million and $1.5 million in the build-out of the facility.


Ms. Erin Mathern, Attorney with Larkin Hoffman, representing the landlord, Tanner Development at Rosedale Marketplace

As tenants go, from a landlord's perspective, Ms. Mathern opined that Total Wine & Spirits was a good anchor tenant for Rosedale Marketplace to bring traffic to the shopping mall as well as into Roseville generally.  Ms. Mathern confirmed that her client had agreed to expend $1.5 million in landlord improvements to the leased space, as part of the 158-page lease agreement between the parties.  Ms. Mathern noted that a good portion of the lease was related to tenant improvements, and what the landlord intended to do so the tenant could operate in that space.  Based on the actual changes being made to the building, and potential economic injury to the landlord if a stay was granted, Ms. Mathern advised that the landlord was definitely opposed.


No matter the decision of the City Council regarding the stay, Ms. Mathern advised that the landlord would need to continue with the construction in order to fulfill their obligations under the lease agreement, providing a significant and direct interest in the matter. 


Ms. Mathern opined that they were of the opinion that the City Council had made a correct decision, and with the matter going before the Court of Appeals, it was their intent to file a brief as well, since their client has an interest in the outcome of any action.  Ms. Mathern noted that the landlord had not been served as of last Friday, the last day to do so; and asked that the City Council not grant a stay, but continue forward as originally intended.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Ms. Mathern confirmed that the lease agreement had been signed September 3, 2013.


Mayor Roe offered both parties an opportunity to respond to comments made after their initial testimony.


Tamara O'Neill Moreland

Ms. O'Neill Moreland clarified that they were not asking the City Council to reverse their decision, but simply asking for a stay; while they sought the Court of Appeals action to reverse the City Council's decision.


In addressing the definition of "respondent," Ms. O'Neill Moreland reviewed statute language regarding who needed to be served, questioning who the adverse parties were; and opining that just because someone said they were going to bring a motion did not mean they would be permitted to do so by law.  Ms. O'Neill Moreland noted that Total Wine & Spirits had to pay rent regardless, and that negated their argument that the landlord was a respondent.  While not having seen the lease or motion yet, Ms. O'Neill Moreland further opined that it may be dependent on how those improvements are recouped during the term of the lease.  However, Ms. O'Neill Moreland noted the need to focus on what is the damage to the City of Roseville.


Regarding public safety issues, Ms. O'Neill Moreland referenced their submission showing research of what had occurred in other states; and regardless of their commitment to community, opined that the firm had committed errors in their operations resulting in significant fines, which had not been fully disclosed to the City Council during their earlier deliberations.  Ms. O'Neill Moreland noted that the City was not considering this company for opening a shoe store, but for a controlled substance; and their apparent shell game of not disclosing what needed to be disclosed now needed to be done.


David Tron

Mr. Tron addressed damages, noting that the lease called for their firm to pay rent, with a ten-year lease, with fifteen years in options, which he had personally guaranteed for the first five years.  After that, Mr. Tron noted that the landlord would pay and have significant loss.


Regarding public safety and health, Mr. Tron stated that he found the comments insulting, noting that they were considered the best operator in the United States, following rules and regulation, with the majority of those operations extremely successful, and out of the 100 stores, having minimal (i.e. 10-11 minor violations) across that number.  Mr. Tron opined that this was a much better record than could be found elsewhere.  Mr. Tron noted that their firm paid their cashiers bonuses to card individuals under age 30, 100% of the time; with over $1 million in bonuses paid out to-date.  Mr. Tron opined that there was no danger in their operations; and further opined that, if they were found to violate the privilege of being a license holder in Roseville, they fully respected and understood that the City Council had the right to take that license away.


At the request of Mayor Roe, concluding testimony, City Attorney Gaughan provided additional advice.  Mr. Gaughan noted that, with the issue of the respondent and action of the Court of Appeals, an awkward scenario was created, with the City of Roseville's City Council operating as a quasi-judicial body but also a respondent to what occurs.  Mr. Gaughan noted that the respondent also cites the trial court as the City Council, which obviously wasn't the case as referenced in his memorandum to the City Council, with the terminology not perfectly applying to these issues, with the City Council operating as an agency to take the place of a trial court but also able to be named as a respondent.  Mr. Gaughan referenced case law from the City of Prior Lake v. MGM Liquors as an example, in which Ms. O'Neill Moreland had represented MGM Liquors.  Mr. Gaughan opined that it was appropriate to consider Total Wine & Spirits as the respondent for the request for a stay.


Councilmember McGehee referenced some new facts included in tonight's packet, with undisclosed violations pending within the last five years, clearly a violation of the City's ordinance causing the City not to be able to enforce its own regulations by granting the transfer under those circumstances.  Councilmember McGehee opined that she found this entire event unfortunate.  Furthermore, Councilmember McGehee noted the date of the lease agreement date of September 13, 2013; opining that this involved the City prematurely, a troubling business practice, especially since being a license holder was a privilege; and to her it seemed like the prudent thing to do would be to make sure the license was in place before signing a lease agreement; and that the City Council would not have any objection.  Councilmember McGehee stated that she found that situation, combined with the failure to disclose the violations and further indication of a violation of the City's own code and questionable moral consequence in the community, to be very disappointing.  Councilmember McGehee, referencing her review of other legal cases, opined that it appeared that the license holder was attempting to deflect or avoid action and permanent violations on their record, which would speak to the question of moral fiber.  While not being interested in calling people to question on such issues, Councilmember McGehee opined that she could see issues with MN State laws and those of other states.


Councilmember Willmus clarified that the City's ordinance had language requiring execution of a lease and going forward with construction of the physical establishment before applying and being granted a license.  Councilmember Willmus referenced a case having come before the City Council several years ago before with the applicant coming to the City Council seeking a license before they had a physical place of businesses; and as heard mentioned by the Minnesota Licensed Beverage Association and Councilmember McGehee at that time, that applicant was deemed to have the cart before the horse.


At the request of Councilmember Willmus, Finance Director Miller confirmed the recollections of Councilmember Willmus; and advised that staff didn't even bring a liquor license applicant to the City Council's attention before they had a lease in place.


Councilmember Willmus noted that the City Council had previously heard from Mr. Burwell of Stephen's Liquor Store, the issue of harm to public safety.  However, Councilmember Willmus opined that he didn't find that potential harm to be any greater with Total Wine & Spirits than with other liquor establishments in Roseville.  On the other side, Councilmember Willmus opined that there was the obvious potential for harm to the licensee and property owner.  Councilmember Willmus stated that those factors would lead him down a path to not grant a stay based on that as one finding of fact.


Councilmember Laliberte stated that she concurred with some of Councilmember Willmus' comments; opining that there was a case to be made for more harm on the part of Total Wine & Spirits than any inferred public safety risk presented.  Councilmember Laliberte also concurred that there was no cause for public safety concerns any greater than with any other liquor establishment in Roseville; and took issue with the original complaint or filing of appeal stating that the City Council had been capricious in its approval.  Councilmember Laliberte opined that she was confident that she had personally weighed and considered what was presented before the meeting and ad the dais before making her decision.  As noted in Attachment B, the Larkin Hoffman letter, Councilmember Laliberte referenced the comment that the City Council has broad discretion on liquor licenses; and reiterated her confidence that this was how the City Council had acted under that discretionary authority.  Therefore, Councilmember Laliberte stated that she was leaning toward a denial of a stay.


Councilmember Etten concurred with the comments of Councilmembers Willmus and Laliberte, and offered no further comments beyond questioning what actual losses the Minnesota Licensed Beverage Association and/or Mr. Burwell would have based on issuance of this license.  Councilmember Etten expressed his confidence in the City's Police Department in holding this license holder as responsible as it did other licensees in the City.


Councilmember McGehee opined that she didn't particularly disagree with the public safety concern; and in the narrow sense in which the City Council was being asked to be an appellate body, she would support the stay since she had supported delaying action in the first place until the City of Bloomington issue had been resolved.  Councilmember McGehee stated that she did have a problem with the license holder removing wine from the premises of the previous license holder, opining that this was clearly flaunting the City's laws.  With Total Wines & Spirits having asked the City of Bloomington to delay until April of 2014 a response from their firm to their questions, Councilmember McGehee questioned what ultimate harm could be felt by them or the other side to grant the stay under these circumstances, and opined that it would be prudent to do so.  Understanding that she was in the minority, as she had been before, Councilmember McGehee stated that she could not present any stronger argument to grant or not grant a stay than she previous stated.


Mayor Roe clarified that findings of fact needed to be indicated no matter which action was taken tonight by the City Council.


Willmus moved, Laliberte seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 11128 (revised Attachment A) entitled, "A Resolution Regarding the Determination on a Request to STAY the Decisions to Transfer and Renew an Off-Sale Liquor License to Minnesota Fine Wines & Spirits, LLC;" as requested by the Minnesota Licensed Beverage Association and Stephens Liquor Store, STAYING the City Council's November 25, 2013 licensing approvals pending the outcome of an appeal filed by these same parties of the City's approvals; as revised; DENYING the request based on the following findings:

1)   There is no public safety issue;

2)   There is no harm to the Minnesota Beverage Association or Stephen's Liquor;

3)   There is harm to Total Wine & Spirits; and

4)   There is harm to the property owner/landlord.


Councilmember McGehee spoke in opposition to the motion for the following reasons: she did not feel that the allegations referenced in the RCA of undisclosed violations between 2011 and 2013 had been fully disclosed by the applicant, clearly speaking to whether the City of Roseville should encourage such types of business practices; the failure of the applicant to fully disclose those recent violations, opining that was a violation of the City's own rules; there was clearly a failure by the applicant to comply with MN rules for disposition of liquor; there was no actual damage to aggrieved parties, as all contracts could be renegotiated; there was no substantial loss to any party involved in this; and the original action by the City Council to approve the transfer and renewal was premature, even though she understood there was no place for people to move into.  Therefore, Councilmember McGehee stated that she would support a stay.


Mayor Roe clarified that this motion was not an action to reconsider previous City Council action to transfer the liquor license; but was a request by the Minnesota Licensed Beverage Association and Stephens Liquor (a/k/a Fairview Wine & Spirits) to temporarily set it aside pending litigation.  Mayor Roe spoke in support of the motion as stated, stating that he agreed with the findings as stated; and agreed that there was no harm to Minnesota Licensed Beverage Association or Stephens Liquor Store.


Roll Call

Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; Etten; and Roe.

Nays: McGehee.

Motion carried.


c.            Consider Waiving Delinquent Utility Charge for 2462 Prior Avenue

Finance Director Chris Miller summarized this delinquent utility billing in the amount of $12,665.04, for 2452 Prior Avenue, as detailed in the RCA and Attachment A (City Code, Chapters 801, 801, 803) dated January 27, 2014; and Attachment B, a January 15, 2014 Opinion from the City Attorney on potential ramifications of granting the request of Roseville Properties.


At the request of Mayor Roe, City Attorney Gaughan offered nothing specific beyond his written opinion, other than to note the clear language of code using "shall" versus "may" as it relates to certification to the County Auditor any utility charges in excess of ninety days past due for collection with real estate taxes, removing any discretion of the governing body.


Discussion ensued among Councilmembers and staff regarding the number of commercial/industrial properties (estimated at 200) currently in the name of the tenant versus the property owner or a management company for the tenant or landlord; whether or if there could be a remedy for tracking that information to avoid recurrence of similar situations; and whether staff could monitor these situations and copy all parties on utility bills to keep lines of communication open. 


Councilmember Willmus expressed concerns in setting a precedent if the City Council elected to waive this charge given the bankruptcy circumstances, and potential for future exposure.


At the request of Councilmember Laliberte, City Attorney Gaughan reiterated his interpretation that the City Council did not have the right to waive the fees at any point, per current city Code, but that they be certified to the property taxes of the property owner.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Finance Director Miller noted that this was a unique circumstance with the tenant going bankrupt, and Roseville Properties required to absorb this cost, even though the City Code says it is the ultimate responsibility of the property owner to be aware of what utility fees are being assessed to their tenants.


At the request of Councilmember Etten, Mr. Miller clarified that the total due represented only utility fees, but as part of the bankruptcy requirements, the City had found it necessary to suspend them for several years, with no interest or penalties able to be applied during that time period, representing direct costs.


At the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Miller clarified that these fees represented less than one year's charges, with the tenant making no effort to pay them until the City started collection processes the end of 2009, at which time the tenant filed for bankruptcy.


At the request of Councilmember Willmus, Mr. Miller was unable to respond whether this usage was generated by one tenant, as this was a multi-tenant designed building which could be subdivided; but he thought it appeared to be one tenant occupying the entire building.


At the request of Mayor Roe to establish a payment plan for the property owner, City Attorney Gaughan advised that City Code did not address that, and questioned if the City would consider outstanding amounts no longer past due if a payment plan was in place, opining that it would be difficult to come up with a definitive answer on that point alone, but would basically be up to the City Council on how it chose to interpret its own code.


At the request of Councilmember Laliberte, Finance Director Miller responded that, while cross checking internally among departments may have alerted the Finance and Billing Department to the situation and who the property owner was, it still wouldn't have been discovered or directed to Roseville Properties, as the property was under an LLC and not discovered until that notice to the LLC was forwarded to Roseville Properties.


Mark Rancone, Roseville Properties

Mr. Rancone thanked Mr. Miller for elevating this to the City Council level; and reviewed this unusual situation, as evidenced in his e-mail to City Manager Trudgeon dated December 2, 2013, provided as a bench handout, and attached hereto and made a part hereof.  Mr. Rancone noted that, when tenants had their own private security contract (e.g. fire and security alarm billings) the property owner typically didn't know about that, as they contracted with someone else, with any false alarms then charged accordingly.  However, Mr. Rancone noted that a problem was that one tenant could monopolize that situation in a multi-tenant building, or they remained unaware of it and it ends up on the tax statement at yearend.


Mr. Rancone addressed the crux of the e-mail and their firm not finding out about these delinquent fees from 2009, until they received their first notice from the City in December of 2013.  Mr. Rancone reviewed the history of the situation, their LLC's purchase of the property from UV Color, since bankrupt, and opined that staff could have found out who the property owner was before now.  Mr. Rancone clarified that the majority of the billing, $9,393, represented on quarter's billing, with the former tenant being current with their previous billings until July of 2009.  Mr. Rancone advised that, had they been aware of this delinquent bill, they could have incorporated them into the lease negotiations and assets of UV Color eventually taken over by Roseville Properties' LLC.  However, since they were just noticed of them in December of 2013 that was no longer possible.  Mr. Rancone advised that their meters go directly to their tenants as a matter of policy to avoid getting in the middle of situations. 


Mr. Rancone opined that better communication was needed between property owners and municipalities; and questioned whether the City Code was properly utilized, since there was no 90-day notification given, and notice was finally provided after an agreement had already been negotiated with a new tenant.  Mr. Rancone further opined that the City needed to take responsibility in this situation as well as the property owner, and sought a common-sense solution between the two parties for a fair resolution.


At the request of Mayor Roe, City Attorney Gaughan reviewed state statute enabling local municipalities to impose just and fair charges, with state statute not including the term "shall," while City Code does include that provision.  Mayor Roe questioned if that provision was consistent with other City Code provisions as well.


Councilmember Etten questioned if it was possible for staff to identify or clarify those 100 or so commercial properties through form letter or e-mail to clear up any future issues and clean up the system expeditiously.


Finance Director Miller responded that the effort could be made; however, he opined that the bigger challenge would be to maintain an accurate database, since when a property changed hands, the data would no longer be accurate unless there was a "but for" process in place to keep current.  In this case, Mr. Miller questioned if it would have been of value anyway, given this unique bankruptcy situation, unless it had been possible when Roseville Properties had been marketing the property.


At the request of Councilmember Etten, Finance Director Miller advised that staff could attempt to update the data on a quarterly billing basis provided enough resources were made available to do so.  Mr. Miller reiterated that this situation was an unusual circumstance, and could not recollect another situation where the landlord was surprised by a large bill outstanding from several years ago.


Mayor Roe questioned if that data wasn't already obtainable from Ramsey County Property Records and Revenue, and whether that information would have been easy to find out and determine; and if not part of current procedure should be in the future.


Finance Director Miller advised that staff did use that data when certifying delinquent bills; and that is how they accessed UV Color in 2009 and beyond.  However, in addressing Mayor Roe's concerns in how further communication was attempted with the account holders and procedures followed, Mr. Miller reminded Councilmembers that that today's procedures had been revised and were different than those followed in 2009 when the bankruptcy was filed, and certifications were only processed annually in October.  Mr. Miller noted that now the certifications are done quarterly, negating such a probable situation occurring again. 


At the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Miller advised that the account holder is well aware of any delinquent bills, even before certification, as a 10% penalty was applied to unpaid bills on their next quarterly billing.


Mayor Roe questioned if, during the time the delinquency is in place, any attempt was made to notify the account holder or owner.


Finance Director Miller advised that there were hundred brought forward every quarter to the City Council, including many residential properties that also had tenants as well.  Mr. Miller advised that staff was responsive to the level of awareness the City Council wanted to bring to property owners; noting that property owners were ultimately responsible for charges, per City Code, and thus staff had a limited role in alerting property owners that their tenants were delinquent; with current code putting the onus on owners versus City staff.


At the request of Councilmember Willmus, Mr. Miller advised that the City typically didn't pull meters when accounts were found delinquent, as that created additional costs (e.g. pulling and/or reinstalling the meter), as well as winter heating rules and avoiding issues regarding that.  Mr. Miller advised that this is the rationale in using the certification process to collect those debts.


Councilmember McGehee opined that, given the number of multi-tenant apartment buildings in the City, there should be no water shut offs due to the landlord creating an LLC; and she was not advocating that such a process be used.  Recognizing that this was an unfortunate set of circumstances, over which the City had no control per its own code, Councilmember McGehee noted that any waiver or deal meant other residents would have to pick up the slack.  As an owner of rental property herself, Councilmember McGehee noted this was one reason she kept all utilities in her name; recognizing that this put the onus on the property owner.  However, Councilmember McGehee opined that it was not the City's responsibility to hunt down every property owner who wished to create an LLC or hire a property manager.  While expressing her sympathy for all parties involved, Councilmember McGehee opined that this waiver should not be granted.


In accordance with current code, Councilmember Willmus opined that the City Council didn't have an option to waive the fee; and questioned whether it was proper to rewrite code to address this case specifically, and to do so retroactively as well.   Councilmember Willmus opined that he could support a payment plan, while unsure of the timeframe; however, given the opinion offered by the City Attorney, opined that the City Council was in no position to do anything other than to collect this fee.


Councilmember Laliberte concurred with Councilmember Willmus, specific to how the code was written and need to collect the delinquent debt under UV Color; and asked that staff create a new debt and collect it by yearend to avoid any further collection burdens.


Mayor Roe clarified that the action would be to certify collection at the next opportunity, which would be yearend when action was taken by Ramsey County.


McGehee moved, Etten seconded, TO NOT WIAVE the delinquent water and sewer charges for 2452 Prior Avenue in the amount of $12,665.04.


Roll Call

Ayes: McGehee; Willmus; Laliberte; and Etten.

Nays: Roe.

Motion carried.


Mayor Roe recessed the meeting at approximately 8:48 p.m. and reconvened at approximately 8:55 p.m.


17.         Business Items - Presentations/Discussions


a.            Twin Lakes Redevelopment Area Discussion

City Planner Thomas Paschke briefly reviewed the update for the Twin Lakes Redevelopment Area discussion as detailed in the RCA dated January 27, 2013; and staff-recommended language amendments outlined on page 2, lines 32 - 58.  Amendments were proposed for the CMU Land Use Category Definition of the current Comprehensive Plan, as well as the CMU Statement of Purpose in the current Zoning Code.


Community Mixed-Use (CMU)

Comprehensive Plan Land Use Definition AND CMU (Zoning) Statement of Purpose

Discussion included staff's interpretation of a land use mix of 25-50% housing as being unrealistic under current market circumstances; definition of "civic" and "institutional;" and staff's recommendation to keep the Comprehensive Plan land use definitions broad, with specificity addressed under the Zoning Code tables of use and in direct correlation and consistent with each other.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Paschke clarified that by having the broad categories with the zoning ordinance telling the specific uses within those broad categories, it would avoid ambiguities currently found.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Paschke confirmed that the Twin Lakes Redevelopment was currently the only CMU designation in Roseville.


Addressing concerns expressed by Councilmember McGehee, Mayor Roe clarified that the zoning code would provide the appropriate place to specifically permit or not permit uses.


Recognizing Councilmember McGehee's concerns and example of the existing Park & Ride facility, Councilmember Willmus opined that more thought was needed as he considered this intriguing situation; however, he further opined that he liked the proposed revisions outlined by staff better than the current version; but agreed with Councilmember McGehee's question of whether it went far enough.


Mr. Paschke responded, in accordance with recent discussions with City Attorney Gaughan, that it was typical in the planning field that land use definitions not be too specific, but made broader, with the zoning ordinance bringing that specificity into play, as it was difficult to enforce those definitions under the Comprehensive Plan alone.


Councilmember Laliberte recognized staff's attempt to match up the table with the proposed language amendments; and opined that she found these suggested amendments to accomplish that goal, and understood why taking out the specificity took the burden off those being last to the area being forced to develop in a certain way.


In response to Councilmember Laliberte's question in how to get zoning to comply, Mr. Paschke responded that this was included as the next part of the definition, in taking those land use aspirations and putting them into law in the zoning section.


Councilmember McGehee asked that the two be accomplished with a parallel path to allow for meaningful discussion of what was included under this broad brush.

City Manager Trudgeon advised that this could be done, even given the number of moving parts, but accomplished through the purpose statement with the next exercise tonight talking about what the City Council wanted or didn't want, potentially modifying the zoning code to specify all areas.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that, as all those moving parts were brought together, it was staff's intent to have sufficient time to figure it out.  If staff was heading in the right direction, Mr. Trudgeon asked that the City Council confirm that to allow staff to draft samples for consideration by the City Council and possible action in the future.


Until she saw the underlying documents, Councilmember McGehee responded that she was not comfortable doing that, even though at first glance it seemed appropriate.  Councilmember McGehee advised that she needed concrete confirmation that what she sees here and what is actually in the revised zoning code is well matched to meet the vision of the City and its residents.  Councilmember McGehee opined that she often found they were approving one thing, and then the other part didn't come up to complete the process.


Mr. Trudgeon assured Councilmembers that staff agreed with those former problematic processes, and was attempting to accomplish those same goals and how the proposed revisions directly applied to the Twin Lakes Redevelopment Area.


Mayor Roe clarified that staff was not asking the City Council to adopt this language tonight, but to provide staff with feedback on whether or not they were heading in the right direction.  Since the zoning ordinance amendments followed closely with the land use definition amendments proposed by staff, Mayor Roe determined that there was no need to repeat that discussion tonight.


Twin Lakes Area Use Exercise

Mr. Paschke introduced this exercise (Attachment A) by defining four specific areas in Twin Lakes.


Area 1 - Cleveland Avenue and County Road C-2

Mayor Roe opined that he was considering that LDR, Retail, Warehousing/Distribution, and Light Manufacturing may not be good fits for that location.


Councilmember Willmus questioned if further definition was needed and whether "mom and pop" shops should be a consideration there.


Mayor Roe responded that "retail" meant "retail."

Councilmember Willmus advised that he didn't want Residential: 12-14 units/acre in this area to avoid greater density; but questioned if there shouldn't be an option for residential above retail in smaller development scenarios, with definitions going forward to better define what was or was not wanted.


Mayor Roe suggested considering some retail, but basing it on scale; to which statement Councilmember Willmus concurred.


Councilmember McGehee concurred with that; and noted the disappointment expressed by residents at Applewood Pointe for a lack of those amenities for them in that area (e.g. pathways and shops), having anticipated such development.


Mayor Roe noted that such development at this location would be a significant walk for them.


Councilmember McGehee opined that it would be appropriate to have CMU with retail on the ground level and residential on top; which would also serve many businesses in the area (e.g. Center Point Development), as well as those walking the path around the lake.  Councilmember McGehee suggested designing a combination that would prove useful to the surrounding community as well as serve as an amenity for businesses in that area.


Since this area was close to the lake, Councilmember Laliberte opined that she would not rule out any retail.


Councilmember Etten agreed with Councilmembers Laliberte and McGehee, that this would be the place to include some of those amenities; however, he noted the need to consider how long it may take to turn over the area and have residential included, suggesting it may need to be a long-term version.  If the goal was to tie small retail with residential, Councilmember Etten opined that light manufacturing and processing could be part of that, as it was often non-intrusive, as long as sufficiently and clearly addressed in the zoning code.


Mayor Roe suggested it could include light manufacturing and warehousing.


Mr. Paschke clarified that neither use appears differently than what is there today; and questioned if the City Council wanted development predicated on density, with Outlots for a mix with retail or to allow some form of production/processing or light manufacturing to be consistent with other areas of the Regional Business District (RBD). However, Mr. Paschke noted that it may not be appropriate here, and if that was determined, the situation could be delved into in more finite detail.


With Mayor Roe considering that operations such as "Pour Decisions" and other uses in the RBD considered production would be included, Mr. Paschke opined that is how he would term them, specifically in an RB-2 District that could be defined in the zoning code as allowed (e.g. a brew pub or something similar to Granite City) with such an aspect within a restaurant providing a more finite and specific use; while  not excluding some other type of production or processing that would not be appropriate with residential.


Mayor Roe noted that this was his consideration in allowing light industrial, to allow for entrepreneurship opportunities.  Mayor Roe recognized the need to not limit the size of retail, and unless others on the City Council objected, he would be supportive of all types of residential on that site, with a smaller scale of retail and smaller scale for production/processing.


Councilmember McGehee advised that she would also have no problem allowing for office use; but expressed her concern in the scale of retail operations or manufacturing, not considering RB-2.


Councilmember Willmus advised that he did not yet know his response to scale, but thought it would become evident as this exercise proceeded.


In conclusion for this area, City Manager Trudgeon reviewed that some uses would be permitted as long as modified for scale; whether limiting size, uses or appearances; but no light manufacturing; yes to include civic and institutional; but no warehousing.


Area 2 - Cleveland and  County Road C

Mayor Roe suggested breaking this area into smaller pieces; with consensus to consider three areas as indicated below.


#1 - U shaped area (boundaries of Mount Ridge Road and Fairview Avenue, north of what would be a continuation of Iona Lane and adjacent to Langton Lake)

Councilmember questioned if there was any desire for housing in this area, opining that it made sense around the park and lake, especially on Mount Ridge Road where the Hagen property was located.


Councilmember Willmus noted that on Iona Lane to Arthur, there was right-of-way there, with Mr. Trudgeon identifying it as a sewer easement.


Discussion ensued regarding the location of the Hagen parcels; and current sites being considered for HRD, currently zoned HDR.


For discussion purposes, a line was drawn all the way from Mount Ridge Road to Fairview Avenue, with the northern half incorporating Langton Lake.


#2-L on w/s side (boundaries of County Road C and County Road C-2; and Cleveland Avenue and Mount Ridge Road)

Councilmember Etten opined that this would be a great spot to remove LDR; but the consensus was to not eliminate potential HDR of 24 plus units/acre.


Councilmember McGehee suggesting eliminating warehousing/distribution; with Councilmember Laliberte noting it was already along Cleveland Avenue and questioned where else it would be allowed in that area.


Mr. Paschke advised that distribution was not currently allowed in the Twin Lakes Redevelopment Area.


Mayor Roe questioned if light manufacturing should be eliminated; with Councilmember Willmus noting that that may serve to eliminate a potential medical device manufacturer, but it was hard to accurately identify that possibility without definitions.


Mr. Paschke advised that this could be specifically permitted, if they were looking for something like a heart device assembly business, but not a tool and die business.


At the suggestion of Mayor Roe to identify a use as "high tech," Mr. Paschke responded that it would be difficult to identify them.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mayor Roe clarified that civic and institutional would be allowed, such as a large educational institution, whether public or private.  Councilmember McGehee questioned if that was meeting the goal to build a better tax base, if allowing for a use that took the property off the tax roll in a significant way.  Councilmember Willmus responded that a private school (e.g. Rasmussen Business School) may not require it to be removed from the tax rolls.  Councilmember Etten questioned if it was an applicable use if someone built an office building and a private school leased it.


Consensus (4/1) was that civic and institutional uses remain in this district; with other uses also remaining.


#3 (boundaries of County Road C, continuation of Iona Lane, Fairview Avenue and Arthur Street)

Mayor Roe suggested eliminating warehousing and light manufacturing in this area.


Councilmember McGehee suggested production precluded based on scale; however, Mayor Roe suggested it was important to keep that as a use to facilitate potential brew pubs.


The consensus was to preclude warehousing/distribution, production/processing, and light manufacturing.


Area 3 - Terrace Drive

Mr. Paschke noted that the north part was guided HDR; with Councilmember McGehee opining that she would be open to HDR with some amenities (e.g. restaurant or small retail); with Mayor Roe suggesting it be done according to scale and comparable to County Road C-2 on the north.


Councilmember Willmus opined that he would be open to LDR north of Terrace Drive, with consensus for LDR of under 12 units/acre; with Councilmember Willmus noting this would back up to existing similar housing.


Mr. Paschke noted that this would require a Comprehensive Plan Amendment and super-majority vote.


While not having it set in stone, Councilmember Willmus stated that he would like to see what it looks like.


Mr. Paschke stated he was not sure what the market could produce, especially as storm water management and green space requirements were taken into consideration.


Mr. Trudgeon concurred that it may look too crowded.


Mayor Roe suggested it be kept below 12 units per acre.


Councilmember McGehee noted some interesting ideas for small cluster housing coming out of the Dale Street project.


Mayor Roe suggesting delineating areas that would be compatible with the south side of Terrace Drive.


Councilmember Etten noted that the current zoning map already designated that differentiation, but wasn't sure if this was a subzone or not.


Mayor Roe questioned if the intent was limiting it to only residential north or allow other uses north.


Councilmember Willmus suggested designating only residential north of Terrace Drive, with the density needing to be the determining factor.


The consensus was to keep small scale retail on the north side.


After further discussion, this area was also divided into two sections: north and south of Terrace Drive.


North of Terrace Drive

Councilmember McGehee suggested no warehousing/distribution, no production/processing, and no light manufacturing; opining she was also not necessarily supportive of HDR residential.


Councilmember Willmus advised that he would need to see what the HDR proposal looked like before making a decision.


Mayor Roe noted that, if someone came forward with a proposal that had too many units for the size of the parcel, the Council had the discretion not to approve it as they had done in the past.


Specific to parcel 2830, Mr. Paschke noted that this was a pre-existing, non-conforming property, with the building currently vacant and lease expired; and the owner therefore unable to re-use the building for limited production or light manufacturing in accordance with state statute and Roseville Zoning Ordinance provisions.  Mr. Paschke advised that the only way for re-use would be under HDR.  Mr. Paschke noted that the question them became whether there was support for affording some properties, particularly that parcel, to continue on in that limited use in that type of building if they wanted to re-use the building; or seek a separate zoning district and Comprehensive Plan Amendment, or an Interim Use.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Paschke advised that the owner had a number of potential applicants during the one year period, but none had signed and the previous tenant's lease had expired, and at the end of September of 2013, the one year allowance for vacancy had expired.  Mr. Paschke advised that the property owner now had to conform to current zoning code requirements.


South of Terrace

Councilmember McGehee suggested removing warehousing/distribution.


Councilmember Laliberte advised that she couldn't see any residential uses on this south side unless they were HDR of 24 units or more.


Councilmember Etten suggested removal of any potential LDR, as well as warehousing/distribution.


Mayor Roe suggested removal of production/processing and light manufacturing.


Area 4 - Fairview and County Road C - north from Byerly's to Fairview Avenue

At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mayor Roe stated that there was always the potential for constructing new roads given the right circumstances.


Mr. Trudgeon noted that, around the cul-de-sac properties, there was a ditch with significant elevation; and while not an insurmountable issue, it was a natural barrier (1755 to the blue line and east of the Byerly's building).


The consensus was to eliminate the potential for HDR residential (24 units plus); to eliminate warehousing/distribution; but to retain production/processing and light manufacturing.


Councilmember Willmus suggested, when this returned, that a Special Council Meeting be scheduled with the sole purpose of this discussion; with City Manager Trudgeon expressing his full support of that idea.


18.         City Manager Future Agenda Review

City Manager Trudgeon reviewed upcoming agenda items.


19.         Councilmember-Initiated Items for Future Meetings


Recess to Closed Executive Session

Etten moved, Willmus seconded recessing to Closed Executive Session at approximately 9:51 p.m. or the purpose of discussing pending litigation regarding appellant review of a liquor license transfer and renewal.


                                    Roll Call

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

Nays: None.




1.            Discuss Pending Litigation Regarding Appellant Review of Liquor License Transfer and Renewal


In addition to Councilmembers and the Mayor, City Manager Trudgeon and City Attorney Gaughan were present for the closed session.


Etten moved, Roe seconded, adjourning the closed session and returning to open session.


                             Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


21.         Adjourn

Willmus moved, Etten seconded adjournment of the meeting at approximately 10:00 p.m.


                             Roll Call

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

Nays: None.