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City Council


City Council Meeting Minutes

February 9, 2015


1.       Roll Call

Mayor Roe called the meeting to order at approximately 6:00 p.m.  Voting and Seating Order: Laliberte, McGehee, Willmus, Etten and Roe.  City Manager Patrick Trudgeon and City Attorney Mark Gaughan were also present.


2.       Pledge of Allegiance


3.       Approve Agenda

Councilmembers Laliberte and McGehee noted questions they had regarding several consent items to be addressed during discussion.


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


                                                Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


4.       Public Comment

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


5.       Council Communications, Reports, and Announcements

Councilmember Laliberte reported on a recent League of Minnesota Cities sponsored conference she and Mayor Roe had attended that focused on public participation and authentic public engagement techniques and ideas.  Councilmember Laliberte advised that she and Mayor Roe would be providing more details at an upcoming Community Engagement Commission meeting, and also bring some ideas and options forward to their City Council colleagues at a future Worksession.


Mayor Roe announced that the second Twin Lakes public informational meeting that would provide results from a recent community survey originally scheduled on February 18, 2015 had been rescheduled to February 25, 2015 at 6:00 p.m. due to several schedule conflicts.


Mayor Roe announced several free upcoming self-sufficiency workshops sponsored by Keystone Community Services at the Ramsey County Library - Roseville Branch; with additional information available at ehayne@keystoneservices.or or by calling Eric Jayne at 651/797-7009.


Mayor Roe announced the 19th annual Roseville Home and Garden Fair, hosted by the Roseville Housing & Redevelopment Authority, scheduled for February 21, 2015 from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Fairview Community Center, with numerous exhibitors, sponsors and workshops scheduled.  Additional information available on the City's Website under the "HRA" tab, or by calling 651/792-7028,


Mayor Roe announced vacancies on several Citizen Advisory Commissions, with the application deadline on March 2, interviews scheduled on March 9, and appointments for terms beginning April 1, scheduled March 23, 2015.  Applications and additional information are available on the City's website under the "commissions" tab.


Mayor Roe invited residents to participate in another brush and buckthorn stacking at Harriet Alexander Nature Center on February 21, 2015 starting at 10:00 a.m.; with additional information available on the City's website or by calling Volunteer Coordinator Kelly O'Brien at 651/792-7028.


Mayor Roe noted that his annual State of the City Address would be presented on February 25, 2015 at 7:30 a.m. as part of the monthly Roseville Business Meeting to be held at Affinity Credit Union in Roseville; and sponsored in part by the T win Cities north and St. Paul Area Chambers of Commerce.


Mayor Roe announced scholarship opportunities available through the North Suburban Cable Commission for residents of the nine member communities with students interested in communication, journalism or similar studies.  Additional information, with a deadline of April 10, 2015 for scholarship applications, is available at or by calling 651/792-7515.


6.       Recognitions, Donations and Communications

Roseville Police Chief Rick Mathwig introduced Officer Christine Marston, sworn in last week as a Roseville Police Officer; with Officer Marston expressing her honor to be provided this opportunity to work for the highly-esteemed Roseville Police Department, and her excitement in serving the community.


Mayor Roe welcomed Officer Marston and thanked her for her enthusiasm.


7.        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 26, 2015 Meeting

­­­­­­Etten moved, Willmus seconded, approval of Meeting Minutes of January 26, 2015 as presented.


                                                Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


8.      Approve Consent Agenda

At the request of Mayor Roe, City Manager Patrick Trudgeon briefly reviewed those items being considered under the Consent Agenda; and as detailed in each specific Requests for Council Action (RCA) and related attachments, dated January 26, 2015.


a.            Approve Payments

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


ACH Payments







                                                Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


b.            Approve Business and Other Licenses and Permits

McGehee moved, Etten seconded, approval/renewal of business and other licenses and permits for terms as noted.


Councilmember Laliberte noted numerous massage therapist licenses that were approved periodically throughout the year, and while recognizing that the majority were operating appropriately, she noted several recent problems in the past, and sought clarification as to who performed background checks on those individuals: a third party of City staff.


From the audience, Chief Mathwig clarified that his department performed background checks on these licensees.


                                                Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


c.            Approve General Purchases Over $5,000

McGehee moved, Etten seconded, approval of general purchases and contracts for services, and where applicable, trade-in/sale of surplus equipment as noted in the RCA and Attachment A entitled, "2015 Capital Improvement Plan Summary," updated January 31, 2015.


At the request of Councilmember Laliberte, City Manager Trudgeon confirmed that other cities and/or agencies under joint powers agreements with the City were invoiced proportionately for a portion of applicable information technology expenditures.

                        Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


d.            Adopt a Resolution to Approve 2015 Apportionment of Assessments

McGehee moved, Etten seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 11207 entitled, "Resolution Relating to Apportionment of Assessments for the Year 2015."


                                                Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


e.            Authorize Joint Powers Agreement with the St. Paul Port Authority (SPPA) to Administer the Property Assessed Clean Energy Program (PACE of MN)

McGehee moved, Etten seconded, authorizing entry in to a Joint Powers Agreement (Attachment A) with the St. Paul Port Authority, Revision 1/26/2015, for administration of the Property Assessed Clean Energy Program (PACE of MN).


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, staff confirmed that participation in the PACE program would include recognition under the GreenStep Program as well.


                                                Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


9.            Consider Items Removed from Consent


10.         General Ordinances for Adoption


11.         Presentations


a.            Sherman Associates Update of Twin Lakes Apartment Development

A bench handout, consisting of the Sherman Associates Presentation was provided, Community Development Director Paul Bilotta introduced this presentation, and introduced developer George Sherman of Sherman Associates Development LLC for an update on their proposed 190 total unit, two building apartment project.


George Sherman of Sherman Associates

Mr. Sherman introduced Mr. Link Wilson of Kaas Wilson Architects available to assist with tonight's presentation, and recognized a number of staff attending in tonight's audience to respond to any questions of the public and/or City Council.  Mr. Sherman noted the last update to the City Council of the proposed Twin lakes Apartment Project had been approximately six month ago and after providing a brief background of the development team, proceeded with the presentation, along with Mr. Wilson.


Link Wilson, Kaas Wilson Architects

Mr. Wilson noted the location of the two buildings, as well as a small retail component proposed as part of the development.


Mr. Wilson advised that the latest parking design exceeded City requirements, and incorporated additional green space as part of the site's stormwater management improvements and other site amenities; and expressed their willingness to continue work with staff on any revisions or reductions to the surface parking at staff's discretion.  Mr. Wilson noted that current plans provided 72 underground parking spaces and 56 surface stalls as part of Phase I of the project, as well as a tot lot, bike racks and entrance drop offs.


Mr. Sherman reviewed interior amenities of the buildings, clarifying that while the project was originally intended as a phased project, it would now be proposed as one development anticipating construction of both apartment buildings within the same eighteen month period.


Mr. Sherman noted the current use of the property with significant asphalt and drainage to wetlands to the west compared to the proposed redevelopment efforts that would serve to clean up water and provide stormwater retention within the property boundaries.  Mr. Sherman noted their company's pride and history in long-term ownership and management of their properties, as well as incorporating ongoing energy efficiency efforts for their construction projects. 


At today's costs, Mr. Sherman advised that each unit would cost approximately $140,000 to build, a comparable price to a single-family home, and based on construction costs, the quality of exterior and interior products used and long-term maintenance designed into the units from sprinklers, high energy furnaces and appliance.  Mr. Sherman noted that the housing industry's changing demographics were making rentals more in demand across the country, creating their own unique mini-communities.


Mr. Sherman reviewed the City's priorities as outlined in the 2013 Maxfield Research Housing Study as compared to their proposed development in meeting those priorities.  Mr. Sherman reviewed the market rate and workforce affordable housing units proposed and rental rates for those units, all broadening the range of housing options for Roseville. 


Mr. Sherman reviewed the behind-the-scenes activities undertaken by the developer over the last six months and resulting financing commitments and grant awards to support this housing project as well as the separate Twin Lakes Parkway extension for the City of Roseville, representing a total commitment from other government agencies of close to $6 million.


At the request of Mr. Sherman, Mr. Link briefly reviewed exterior architectural designs; as well as providing section cuts from a drone that showed site lines for the broader neighborhood and distance from existing single-family homes, signifying the developer's sensitivity to the neighborhood in being the least impactful as possible given the higher density of this type of housing and required height of the buildings.


Council Questions

Councilmember Willmus noted differences between the site plan included in the agenda packet and as part of tonight's presentation, and asked the developer to explain the differences specific to egress and ingress along with underground parking.


Mr. Link advised that during survey work with the developer's professional civil engineer and architects, the project had been revised due to significant grade issues for the underground parking.  Mr. Link noted that this latest design created more of a flat plain for entering the garage almost at grade, and thus provided more green space and surface parking stalls.  If further revision was requested, Mr. Link expressed the developer's willingness to cooperate as the design came closer to formal submission.


When discussions for this project originated in 2013, Councilmember Willmus noted that the proposal was for 100% market rate units as referenced in the Metropolitan Council's Section 12 of the grant application, and questioned when that discrepancy had come into play and the project to include affordable housing units, and whether it was after neighborhood input.


Mr. Sherman advised that he didn't recall a discussion that included intents for 100% market rates units without consulting with his staff, but his recollection was when presenting to the Roseville Housing & Redevelopment Authority (HRA), the project had targeted a portion of the units for affordable housing.  Mr. Sherman again expressed his confusion, but related his understanding from the meeting in July of 2013 with the HRA that the project always included a mix of work force and market rate units.


Councilmember Willmus noted that Mr. Sherman's recollection was similar to his, and questioned the discrepancy on the Metropolitan Council grant application; asking that someone from the development team provide a response in the near future to staff to disseminate to the City Council.


Councilmember McGehee concurred with the questions raised by Councilmember Willmus and that the project had been presented as a market rate project, which would have been one of the first such developments in Roseville.  With the apparent changes as proposed to include affordable housing units, Councilmember McGehee stated that she could not and would not support a project that separated those work force units assigned to one building and higher end units in another building.  Councilmember McGehee stated that she preferred a mix of units throughout the development, with comparable buildings, materials, and amenities.  Councilmember McGehee opined that to construct the two buildings as currently proposed would infer designation of one building as "second class" and she was not interested in such a perception within the City of Roseville.  Specific to this proposal, Councilmember McGehee expressed appreciation that it had come forward now for this discussion, especially since a lot had changed since the initial presentation in June and prior to civic input.  Councilmember McGehee expressed her support that the Twin Lakes Parkway component had been separated from this development proposal, noting that while the survey was not integral to this plan and access not essential for the development on this site, it was an important consideration for the neighborhood.  While the developer had clearly worked on obtaining a significant amount of necessary funding, Councilmember McGehee noted that a substantial amount was still being requested to come from the City of Roseville.  Councilmember McGehee questioned if her recollection of the original presentation was her oversight in not recognizing the intent of the developer to include affordable housing units; but stated she was under the impression she had been approving along with her colleagues whether the development got funded, and did not expect massive funding requirements be provided by the City of Roseville.


At the request of Councilmember Etten, Mr. Sherman reported that there was as of yet no confirmation of a tenant for the commercial component of the project, but advised that they continued to work with a number of potential retail and/or restaurant tenants.  However, Mr. Sherman further advised that the tenants were reluctant to commit until they were assured the project was going to happen.  Mr. Sherman, noting that previous successful Sherman Associates developments that spoke for themselves, expressed assurance that this development could and would be successful.


Councilmember Laliberte provided her recollection from past discussions that the project always included a small percentage of workforce or affordable housing units, even though she suspected those numbers had changed over time, causing her some reservations about the new ratios compared to those given during before the City Council's original approval of the proposed project.  Councilmember Laliberte also expressed concerns regarding the amount of money the City needed to supply the project, and even though the developer had described the current use in the area as obsolete space, noted the significant amount of interest and development now occurring in this redevelopment area.  Councilmember Laliberte questioned creating a perception that there were no other options or potential developments available.

Mayor Roe questioned if that was what the comment was intended to represent.


Councilmember Laliberte reiterated that considerable development and discussion was occurring in this area; and suggested caution was needed on what was developed and where it was done, especially when the development was seeking public taxpayer funds.


Specific to a mix of units in both buildings rather than separate buildings, Mayor Roe advised that he would support that concept.  Mayor Roe asked Mr. Sherman if he had any projected numbers of what gap financing would be requested from the City.


Mr. Sherman advised that in the overall mix in types of housing units, the intent was for 40% workforce and 60% market rate units.  Mr. Sherman reviewed rationale, based on Metropolitan Council input, that market rate units were larger in square footage and provided larger common area amenity packages to meet the needs of tenants versus the smaller footprint for a 1 to 2 person family unit, requiring less in amenities by nature.  Mr. Sherman noted that the cost for each unit would be essentially the same (e.g. cabinets, appliances), but just vary in square footage for market rate versus affordable units.  If the affordable unit component was eliminated or significantly reduced, Mr. Sherman advised that the tax credit equity funding source may no longer be available to the project, which in turn would increase the gap funding required from the City or other sources.  Mr. Sherman advised that it was tough to sell the project when providing less than 50% workforce units, thus their proposal for the buildings as noted.  Mr. Sherman advised that physically it could be accomplished, and expressed willingness to see if they could make such a program work to make the project more efficient and viable for investors. However, Mr. Sherman reiterated that the tax credit program would not work unless there were at least 50% workforce units.  Mr. Sherman advised that they would return to their lenders to seek their willingness to make that adjustment or see if other arrangements could be made that would still make the project financing work.


Specific to the requested financing from the City of Roseville, Mr. Sherman advised that the request, as generally outlined last summer, would be for "pay as you go" tax increment financing (TIF) in an amount of $3 million to $3.5 million; with the developer taking the risk.  However, Mr. Sherman noted that this request had not been formalized at this time and if the project proceeded, would come forward to the City Council as a separate presentation and request at that time.


At the request of Mayor Roe for clarification, Mr. Sherman advised that, while the actual financing gap remained very preliminary at this point, the City's participation should not exceed $3.5 million.


Mayor Roe reiterated that if Building A as displayed provided for more than 50% but less than 100% workforce housing, with some of those units mixed into Building B, he would be more comfortable.  Mayor Roe noted that, if the developer could find a way to fund such a proposal and still meet the 50% threshold with mixing units, it sounded like the issue would be more problematic architecturally in designing the square footage of the individual units.


Mr. Sherman concurred with Mayor Roe's statement regarding design work, and expressed appreciation for this dialogue tonight to respect neighborhood concerns and develop a project that was workable for the City and developer.  Mr. Sherman noted that, if the City Council's consensus was to move the project forward, his team would take a look at requested design and funding changes.  However, if the project was not supported by the City Council consensus as proposed with attempted revisions as discussed tonight, Mr. Sherman George advised that they would need to return to their lenders to determine their continued interest in financing the project.  Mr. Sherman advised that lenders and the Metropolitan Council supported workforce housing in Roseville, clean-up of contaminated soils and waters with stormwater improvements, and making urban improvements. 


Mr. Sherman noted three areas needing to be addressed, including the City's decision on extending Twin Lakes Parkway as a separate consideration; the amount of affordable housing units they would support in one building; and whether they supported gap funding participation from public funds to make the project viable.  Mr. Sherman again expressed his willingness to work with lenders to further refine finances by changing the percentage of affordable units and mixing them between the two proposed buildings if the City Council supported the project in general. 


At the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Sherman confirmed that the requested TIF was what was only generated on this site, and not from any other properties within the Twin Lakes Redevelopment Area.


Councilmember Willmus reviewed his tally on requested City financial assistance, including up to $3.5 million in TIF, $300,000 from the HRA, and credits for sewer access and water access connections (SAC and WAC).  Councilmember Willmus stated that he, along with his colleagues, still was concerned about those amounts.  While having supported use of TIF for residential projects having broad community support in the past, Councilmember Willmus questioned if he could do so since, based on public sentiment to-date on the project as it now stands, this development project had yet to obtain that public support.  If required to make a decision tonight on whether or not to support the level of assistance being requested, Councilmember Willmus stated that his answer would be no.


Councilmember McGehee echoed the comments of Councilmember Willmus, and questioned if workforce housing was reduced from 50% to 20% and spread between the two proposed buildings, whether or not some of the secured funding would be lost.


Mr. Sherman clarified that the portion of funding subject to loss would be the tax credits themselves if workforce housing fell below 50%.  Mr. Sherman opined that MHFA and Metropolitan Council funding may continue if the affordable housing component remained as part of the project, but may be subject to either agency pro-rating their funding based on the number of overall units.  If the affordable housing units were reduced to 20% as suggested by Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Sherman advised that would reduce the units from 80 as currently proposed to 40.  Mr. Sherman noted that the purpose of tonight's discussion was to determine a comfort range from the City Council; with the developer's objective to make a viable project, which they were willing to look into spreading units between both buildings and determine lender interest.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Link clarified the size of the tot lot was estimated at 1,600 square feet, approximately 55' by 30'.


In referencing tonight's meeting packet that had included the June City Council meeting minutes, Councilmember Laliberte questioned staff if construction costs and/or financing for extension of Twin Lakes Parkway would require funding for that extension from the capital improvement program (CIP) rather than covered by the developer as part of their project as previously presented.


Community Development Director Bilotta clarified that the Metropolitan Council's grant award included money for extension of Twin Lakes Parkway but the developer was not basing their decision on whether or not the extension was done or not.  If the Parkway extension did not ultimately go forward, Mr. Bilotta advised that any excess funds would go back to the Metropolitan Council since competition for funding was extensive, and the scope of the project would be changed accordingly and funds reallocated to another area.


Referencing the June RCA and original Sherman project as presented, Councilmember Laliberte questioned how many of these project components needed tweaking and what had already been addressed legally as part of the TIF "but for" analysis.


Mr. Bilotta reiterated that the formal TIF application had not yet been submitted by Sherman, but would be submitted as part of the underwriting process, including the "but for" test qualifications and initiated by Sherman Associates.  If and when the formal TIF application is received, Mr. Bilotta advised that the City's Financial Consultant would review the application, using the "but for" test and provide findings for presentation to the City Council, and if the project proceeded, would be one of the next steps in the process, but had yet to occur.


At the request of Councilmember Etten, Mr. Sherman estimated the total project development cost to be $40 million plus, or in excess of $200,000 per unit when land acquisition, environmental clean-up and construction costs were included.  At the further request of Councilmember Etten, Mr. Sherman reviewed estimated costs of environmental clean-up, with $600,000 for demolition of existing structures, $400,000 to $500,000 for environmental clean-up, and additional funds required for stormwater management improvements and enhancements.


Councilmember Etten sought clarification of Councilmember McGehee's preferred percentage of workforce units and their spread between the two buildings.


Councilmember McGehee responded that she would like the City Council to have an established policy when any housing was constructed in Roseville that a minimum of 20% in workforce affordable housing was included.  While she would support 20% in affordable units at this point, Councilmember McGehee opined that she would like to defer to the existing neighborhood.  Councilmember McGehee stated that she personally felt strongly about  the exterior finishes and amenities, and that they should be the same for all rental units, with any resident having access to similar amenities in their individual units and/or in common areas.  While recognizing that in market rate units those amenity costs were borne by rental fees, and that some subsidy may be required by the developer for including those amenities with the affordable housing component, Councilmember McGehee reiterated her preferences and opined that 20% seemed bearable to make this distinction and provide a fair cut-off.  Councilmember McGehee clarified that she was not suggesting 50%, but based on recent community surveying, would look to the community to determine how strongly they supported various amenities and designs.


Councilmember Etten noted that the developer's current proposal was for a 40% proportion for affordable units, and questioned if Councilmember McGehee preferred a lower proportion, to which Councilmember McGehee responded affirmatively.


Councilmember Etten agreed that the affordable and market rates should be mixed and not to create a higher end and lower rent building, but to mix those uses.  Councilmember Etten spoke in strong support of affordable housing at 20% to 40% providing rentals available on an average worker's salary, and not erroneously representing the perception of what affordable housing meant and not demeaning those unable to pay market rate rental rates that may be possible for other residents.


Councilmember McGehee seconded Councilmember Etten's comments.  Councilmember McGehee clarified that her intent was to offer the same level of amenities for everyone while still providing lower rentals for those needing it, thus her suggestion of 20% affordable housing units, opining that those renters were entitled to those same amenities.  For those in the listening and home audiences, Councilmember McGehee explained the meaning of TIF funding generated on future taxes, but essentially taxpayer money being used to subsidize a development project.


Mayor Roe echoed the comments of Councilmembers Etten and McGehee regarding qualifications for "affordable" versus "market rate" housing, using his own previous experience as a recent college graduate as a Professional Engineer whose school debt and beginning salary qualified him for affordable housing rates.  Mayor Roe noted that one of the problems the City of Roseville was attempting to address was some of those existing multi-family older buildings that were classified as affordable due to their age and maintenance/upkeep issues making them less desirable for market rate rental fees.  Mayor Roe opined that if the result of using taxpayer monies to assist with getting new, high-quality construction of multi-family housing in Roseville as a currently missing option, he was supportive of such an improvement in making Roseville a better community.  Mayor Roe noted that this would provide a broader range of affordable housing types to meet market needs beyond the single-family housing option.  To seek to keep a portion of the units affordable by qualifying for tax credits, Mayor Roe opined made sense, and therefore he had no problem using TIF to gain workforce housing in Roseville, and in applying the number of units needed to get the project viable and to change use of the project site.  Mayor Roe noted that, with funding provided through grants and TIF, they only represented 22% of the total $40 million projected cost of the project, and only 9% to 10% funding from the City when grants were excluded from that total amount.  Mayor Roe opined that this was what TIF was intended to be used for; and while understanding the concerns expressed by the adjacent neighborhood, opined that they could be addressed, and noted the developer's willingness to further review or adapt their plans as much as possible to address the concerns expressed.


Mr. Sherman confirmed that they were interested in making this a successful project for the City as well as for their development team, and even though there were a lot of moving parts, expressed his willingness to look at both buildings for consideration of an equal percentage of affordable units.  Mr. Sherman offered, once further refinement was completed by his team, to return to the City Council with a number that worked.  However, Mr. Sherman stated that he didn't think the assistance level from the City would change; and whether or not the Twin Lakes Parkway extension was approved or not, it made no significant impact for their project and was a decision for the City Council alone. 


Mr. Sherman reiterated his firm's long-term ownership commitment of the building; and their typical high-quality construction materials.  Mr. Sherman recognized that there was a strong possibility that they would lose a portion of their funding in mixing the affordable and market rate units in each building or by changing the percentage; however, he opined that they would attempt to meet the test and find other ways to address that.  Mr. Sherman noted that the financing gap was larger than the TIF request, and since the project had been awarded significant grants from and the support of other government agencies, he felt they owed that process a chance to see if the project could work before having to return the money to those agencies for a competing project in another community, since this represented a significant award for Roseville and the proposed development project, while providing a way to increase workforce housing in Roseville.


Councilmember Laliberte asked Mr. Sherman to address the changes in building rental unit percentages and make-up and the total costs between the previous presentation in June and tonight's meeting.


Mr. Sherman recalled that the total cost at over $40 million had not changes; and the project's units had changed based on underground versus surface parking, increased construction costs of $140,000 per unit, as well as land costs per unit of approximately $20,000 and other costs for soft costs (e.g. financing) and site clean-up.  Mr. Sherman advised that they would provide updated proformas to staff for further analysis and dissemination to the City Council.


Public Comment

Dwayne Metz, Mildred Drive (across from the lake)

Mr. Metz opined that the lake and park are the gems of this community and needed to be protected at all costs.  Mr. Metz further opined that the proposed location of this project did not serve to protect the lake.


Jeff Hagen, 5976 S Owasso Blvd.

Mr. Hagen clarified that his mother was the current owner of the property in question in Roseville.  Mr. Hagen noted that this redevelopment had been under discussion for over ten years, but it just continued to drag on.  While recognizing that there was some concern by the City Council, Mr. Hagen opined that there was also obvious agreement that it was preferable to turn this land from a trucking terminal into something of value to the City of Roseville that would increase its tax base.  Mr. Hagen suggested the question should be whether the City Council was fully comfortable with the current use or how soon it wanted to move to the next phase in redeveloping the properties.  Mr. Hagen opined that further delay for more time would be advantageous to the community.


Kathleen Erickson, Centennial Drive

Ms. Erickson referenced an e-mail she had sent to the City Council earlier today, and clarified that she had no qualms that there was a need for more housing in the area.  However, Ms. Erickson opined that this was not the right location for this type of housing, not whether it was market or affordable rate housing, but because of the proposed significant impacts to the adjacent single-family residential neighborhood.  While appreciating the drone shots presented by the developer, Ms. Erickson questioned how representative it was to those residential properties when one of the buildings was proposed to be located closest to the roadway from existing commercial buildings and especially with the four story height, a first in Roseville.  Ms. Erickson stated that she was not opposed to development of the Twin Lakes area, and not having anything against Sherman Associates, and desirous of a successful development, she would support such a development further west on the other side of the lake where similar buildings already existed.  Ms. Erickson noted that the "Dorso" site would still provide for access to the park, which was an amenity the existing single-family neighborhood also valued and used frequently as a meeting place providing a natural area for them in an urban setting.  Ms. Erickson stated that residents enjoyed nature, but they didn't want to see the proposed units increase and negatively impact the day-to-day quality of life for existing residents, whether or not the development was tied to extension of Twin Lakes Parkway.  Ms. Erickson opined that extending the Parkway would only serve to create more traffic bottlenecks in the area; and asked that the development would serve to benefit the neighborhood that they loved.


Bob Patient, 3049 Shorewood Lane

As a newer resident to Roseville, Mr. Patient advised that his concern was in the height of the proposed building and increased traffic on Fairview Avenue.  Mr. Patient opined that the intersections of Lydia Avenue and County Road D at Fairview Avenue already presented a bottleneck, as well as at Lincoln Drive.  Mr. Patient recognized that Fairview Avenue and several other roadways were under the jurisdiction of Ramsey County and therefore the City was limited in what could be done, he stated that residents did not want more cars there. 


Mr. Patient noted the proposed closure of Wheeler Street at County Road D and proposed assessments to benefitting properties, and suggested that since this was of benefit to the entire community beyond the immediate neighborhood, the taxes be spread city-wide.  Mr. Patient suggested that any other costs for this specific redevelopment project should also be taxed city-wide as only zeroing in only on properties adjacent to the Twin Lakes Redevelopment Area for any assessments.


Lisa McCormack, Wheeler Street

As a member of the neighborhood association, Ms. McCormack seconded the comments of Ms. Erickson, but clarified that she was speaking as a resident also.  Ms. McCormack stated that the neighbors were open and desirous of a successful project, but questioned confidence in the success of the project as proposed.  Ms. McCormack noted one point of contention for the neighborhood was the lack of awareness provided in the past, and their knowledge only coming forward well after the previously referenced June meeting.  Ms. McCormack noted that the neighbors had considerable concern with the proposed location, since they considered this condensed area of 500 single-family homes as a gateway into Roseville.  Ms. McCormack advised that, once the neighbors became aware of the proposed project, they had looked at multiple studies and factors playing into whether or not such a project could be successful, since it affected the long-term stability of the existing neighborhood. 


Regarding the aerials provided by drone from the developer, Ms. McCormack disagreed that the proposed development and size would not negatively impact or be obviously visible to the existing neighborhoods, since it was purported to be separated by existing retail development and over 700' away. 


Ms. McCormack noted that, since the Twin Lakes planning sessions were mid-way and community survey responses that had been given significant time by neighbors and were yet to be analyzed, opined that this conversation was preliminary.  Ms. McCormack noted and agreed that the lake and park were critical components for many residents and further opined that height was also of concern. 


Ms. McCormack  noted she had additional petitions yet to be submitted, which she would do at a subsequent meeting in the near future, beyond those already submitted at the January 5, 2015 City Council meeting.  Ms. McCormack reminded Councilmembers that the petition had yet to receive a public acknowledgement or City Council response.  Ms. McCormack stated that the neighborhood was open to seeing what was feasible; but questioned if the building(s) needed to be four stories.  Ms. McCormack opined that it would be critical to the neighbors to be assured of the financial feasibility of the project, especially since there appeared to be varying opinions on what it would take to make it work financially.


Ms. McCormack spoke in support of additional conversation as to whether this is the right site for the proposed development, and in displaying another aerial showing high density zoning (HDR) in the area immediately north of North Terrace Drive, questioned the validity of that same zoning designation on the subject parcel.  Ms. McCormack advised that the neighborhood petitions had intended to address those applicable zoning concerns.


Janet Hagen, current owner of the subject property

Ms. Hagen clarified that she was not a Roseville resident, but was speaking as the current business owner succeeding her deceased husband.  Ms. Hagen provided a background on ownership and use of the property and failed attempts to sell it in the past for development, made difficult with government stipulations due to soil contamination and changing zoning regulations.  Ms. Hagen noted the difficult position she found herself in trying to market this property under those circumstances; opining that she thought she had found a good solution for all parties, including the City of Roseville and its residents, when Sherman Associates had expressed their interest in purchasing the parcels and based on their reputation and past project successes.  Ms. Hagen opined that the potential increased tax base for the City should serve as a huge asset, and asked that the City Council recognize past attempts and difficulties in selling the property over a number of years.  Ms. Hagen questioned if it was now necessary to start all over again; and suggested that, while this development may not be perfect for all but it was more involved and not always possible to achieve perfection or for picking and choosing projects that would address individual or collective interests.  If this proposal did not proceed, Ms. Hagen expressed her concern that another long process would be required, especially given the many issues already faced by her husband and former tenants on the site who were given eviction notices by the City when previous developments seemed inevitable and forthcoming, but were later tabled for a number of years.  With this current development interest, Ms. Hagen opined that it was time to complete redeveloping this area, and reiterated her impression that this would be seen as an asset to the entire community.


Clarifications of Public Comment Issues

Assessment to Benefitting Properties or Areas

Mayor Roe clarified that this was related to the initial Twin Lakes analysis and study on options to finance infrastructure improvements in the overall Twin Lakes area and possible definition of benefitted areas in accordance with state statutes.  Mayor Roe advised that more recently, the City had made the decision to move from that option, and clarified that the option was not currently on the table other than assessing specific projects that benefitted and were in the immediate area only.


HDR Zoning Districts

Mayor Roe stated that this perception may be a misrepresentation of previous City Council discussions, specific to the areas considered as HDR zoning.   In the "green strip" as displayed by Ms. McCormack, Mayor Roe noted that the City Council had talked about changing current zoning from HDR to Community Mixed Use (CMU), which would still allow for HDR uses; and that discussion was  not necessarily framed to indicate the City Council did not want HDR uses in that area.


Traffic Volumes and Updated Study

At the request of Councilmember Laliberte, City Manager Trudgeon confirmed that the updated traffic study was scheduled for presentation to the City Council at their February 23, 2015 meeting.  For the benefit of residents, Councilmember Laliberte noted that Ramsey County had been invited to attend that meeting as well, since Fairview Avenue and other impacted roadways and/or intersections were under Ramsey County's jurisdiction.


Mayor Roe further noted that part of the overall review of the Twin Lakes Redevelopment Area had been acknowledgement that those intersections were not currently working as they should, and any thoughts on improving traffic flow should include Ramsey County or other jurisdictions as applicable and in conjunction with City's plans at Twin Lakes.


Council Positions

Mayor Roe noted that the developer was not seeking any request for action from the City Council at this meeting; however, he noted Sherman Associates' concern as to whether there was a consensus of the Council to move the project further pending their submission of updated proformas and their analysis of different approaches to orient units.


Councilmember Laliberte opined that it was up to Sherman as to how much more work they were willing to do.  Councilmember Laliberte stated that she was very interested in receiving the updated traffic study, as well as feedback from the community survey process recently completed and scheduled for presentation on February 25, 2015 at the Twin Lakes Planning meeting.  Following her review of that material, Councilmember Laliberte opined that she could then pin down the financial pieces.


Councilmember McGehee concurred with Councilmember Laliberte's comments; further noting that the City Council would be meeting for their own Planning Retreat next week; and until those meetings and presentations were completed, she was not willing to commit to doing further work at this time.


Councilmember Etten opined that there should be some work Sherman could do between now and then to further help the City Council's discussion rather than them not doing anything further.  Without that updated information from Sherman as requested tonight, Councilmember Etten opined that the City Council could not make intelligent choices, and suggested Sherman complete their further due diligence within the next few weeks.


Councilmember Laliberte concurred with Councilmember Etten's comments.


Councilmember McGehee stated that Sherman could do so if they so chose, but the proposed project was not getting her resounding support right now.


George Sherman Response

Mr. Sherman stated that his firm wanted this to be a successful project for Roseville, and therefore, there were some additional things they could do as requested.  Mr. Sherman advised that this included addressing the percentage of workforce units in each building, which he opined had a high probability of success, but reiterated that he didn't think those revisions would provide any huge reduction if any in the amount of TIF assistance they planned to request for the  project.


Regarding Twin Lakes Parkway, Mr. Sherman again stated that, if the City chose to extend the Parkway, his development team would work with them, but if not the development could still proceed.


Mr. Sherman advised that he was unable to clearly identify a firm number for the TIF funds request at this time, until they analyzed the financial gap further related to the affordable housing mix.  However, Mr. Sherman reiterated his request to get some consensus from the City Council as to whether or not and whether or not they would support using TIF for the project or not.


City Council Response

Councilmember Laliberte stated that, in general, she preferred to use TIF for projects bringing long-term jobs to the City.  While being less desirous of housing use, Councilmember Laliberte stated that she understood it was used for housing many situations, and therefore would not rule it out.  Given the TIF request, combined with WAC, SAC, and HRA monies, Councilmember Laliberte opined that it was a considerable financial request, and recognized that a public hearing would be required in the future for establishing a TIF District.


Mayor Roe clarified that this would be part of the process after a formal TIF application was received; and City Manager Trudgeon confirmed that it would be several months for that process once an application was received.


At the request of Mayor Roe, City Manager Trudgeon clarified that SAC and WAC credits were pooled or banked credits on hand and not from taxpayer funds, but totaling approximately $1 million based on Metropolitan Council fees.


Councilmember Laliberte opined that this was a valuable proposal was valuable to the City and would improve housing options beyond existing options.  Councilmember Laliberte stated that there were people interested in living in Roseville and the City Council was interested in welcoming them into the community; however, not too heavily on the backs of current residents.


If the project could be further refined to meet what the neighborhood and she wanted to see, Councilmember McGehee stated that she was not opposed to the use of TIF even though she preferred it be used for living wage job creations that were severely needed in this community.  However, Councilmember McGehee stated that she was still on the fence in terms of this project, and would withhold further support until she heard how and if it was supported in the community and impacts to the general tax base, as well as how that housing looked in welcoming people into the community.


Mayor Roe noted the lack of consensus, duly noted by Mr. Sherman.


Mayor Roe recessed the meeting at approximately 7:57 p.m., and reconvened at approximately 8:01 p.m.


b.            Housing & Redevelopment Authority (HRA) Joint Meeting

HRA Members Present: Chair Dean Maschka and Members Susan Elkins, Vickie Lee, and Dan Wall, along with Councilmember Jason Etten.  



Chair Maschka reviewed 2014 work plan goals and those completed or ongoing as well as those yet to be completed, as detailed in Attachment D to the RCA.  After the City Council completes their upcoming retreat, Chair Maschka advised that the HRA would revise their strategic plan and HRA roles for presentation to the City Council to make sure they were partnering collectively.  Chair Maschka spoke to those projects that the HRA had been able to undertake and thereby relieve the City Council of that responsibility, including the successful and well-received residential and commercial neighborhood enhancement programs (NEP), and educational aspects of that program and success of the associated abatement program in improving overall code enforcement and livability of the community.


Chair Maschka expressed his appreciation of how the rental registration and licensing program was proceeding, and successful use of the housing replacement program for redevelopment of a parcel on Hamline Avenue and future consideration of whether or not this could become a revenue-neutral project going forward.


Chair Maschka recognized the lessons learned and delays with the Dale Street Project, which would be on the HRA's agenda at their upcoming February meeting and options to 1) do nothing, 2) extend deadlines, or 3) change or end the project.


Chair Maschka referenced the business retention aspect of the HRA and favorable responses from the designated business page in the City's newsletter and other efforts within the community.


Chair Maschka expressed his disappointment in the recent completion of the Southeast Roseville Study with results based on social aspects and not providing sufficient information to clarify next steps.


From the HRA perspective, Chair Maschka stated major areas for City Council consideration in establishing priorities:

·         SE Corridor and jurisdictional issues

Chair Maschka noted a number of programs available for the City to deal with housing issues, which was a major problem.  Chair Maschka noted further discussion was needed to determine if outside consultation was needed to determine solutions and identify funding mechanisms and how they could work.


·         Twin Lakes Redevelopment Area

Chair Maschka opined that it seemed like this issue had been around forever, and questioned if the dream was alive or dead.  Chair Maschka suggested the need to step back, since the synergy for the original community vision was no longer there.  However based on interviews with business owners in that area as part of business retention efforts, Chair Maschka noted that they were very successful, causing him to question if more concentration should be given to building a business/industrial area and give up on the housing issues, perhaps even through creating a moratorium on development to determine what made sense.  Under the current setting, Chair Maschka noted that it seemed the City Council and community continued to react to proposed developments and that situation continued to create a nightmare situation for neighbors and the City Council.  Chair Maschka questioned and suggested City Council discussion at their upcoming retreat for the possibility of again seeking a master developer under city control for this area.


·         Chair Maschka noted the need to address the changing nature of retail, using the Har Mar Mall as an example of the bar for new tenants being lowered rather than raised.  Chair Maschka noted another change in the retail landscape was internet retail and the bricks and mortar retail moving toward experiential aspects. Chair Maschka suggested further discussion with Rosedale as to how they saw themselves fitting in the community as the "Golden Goose" as part of that consideration.


·   Chair Maschka noted the need to review and reconsider the overall entire transportation aspect for Roseville and area access, including other agencies and jurisdictions (e.g. MnDOT) in how to improve that in order for Roseville to remain successful. 


·         Chair Maschka noted that the Har Mar Mall area provided great opportunities with land and space for a transportation corridor; but questioned impacts if the bookstore and grocery store move out as tenants.  Chair Maschka suggested future impacts the City Council may wish to consider, similar to Brooklyn Park's West Side as one possibility.


Chair Maschka opined that the City Council, once it determined its priorities and metrics, could then direct staff on where they saw the City going and how to get there, and what roles they saw for the HRA to play.  Chair Maschka noted the need for how to provide gap financing, with the Sherman project as a prime example of that need.  Chair Maschka opined that he saw this as an exciting time with the need to address the SE corridor housing and exploring funding opportunities.  Whether the City Council decided it needed to establish an Economic Development Authority (EDA) and whether or not that consisted of the HRA or the City Council, Chair Maschka asked that the HRA be told what to do and where to go, expressing the HRA's collective excitement and willingness to follow their lead.



Specific to Southeast Roseville, Mayor Roe noted some ideas he and Councilmember Laliberte had heard at the recent LMC community engagement focus.  Mayor Roe advised that he'd already preliminarily reached out to the Mayor or Maplewood on how those efforts may proceed and advised that he would bring up those ideas at the City Council's retreat.  Mayor Roe noted the need for the  City Council to talk about the process, and make sure residents, landlords, neighbors, businesses, and other agencies and neighboring communities were all involved as part of that process. 


Chair Maschka noted preliminary discussions on starting a project and coordination by the Roseville HRA and Police Department, and School District, along with Legal Aid and others, in addressing funds for educational opportunities to address the high rate of English illiteracy among the community's adult population.


Councilmember McGehee concurred with and personally shared the priorities outlined by Chair Maschka; and clarified that despite her comments regarding Twin Lakes, she was not afraid to put funding forward, including bonding versus TIF as a potential to address the blighted southeast corner of Roseville.  Councilmember McGehee opined if taxes were generated through a bond in combination with additional housing, it became a much more palatable package.  Councilmember McGehee expressed her interest in Chair Maschka's approach for the City Council and HRA to work in partnership, opining that both bodies had been too uncoordinated in the past in what they were trying to accomplish.  Councilmember McGehee expressed her excitement in potential bonding to address housing needs and increase the tax base, while not become burdensome to taxpayers.


Chair Maschka noted his request to HRA staff to have the City's bond counsel available at their next HRA meeting to address potential general obligation bonding options to address the blight in southeast Roseville that qualified the City for a number of different programs, and the need for further exploration of those options.


Councilmember Willmus noted past discussions and his ongoing concern with how much the HRA has on its plate and the scope it encompassed.  Councilmember Willmus noted the heavy emphasis on residential housing, and the ongoing lack of addressing the "R" for redevelopment of commercial properties as well.  Councilmember Willmus expressed his appreciation that the HRA was stepping back to review and revisit their current strategic plan.  As a councilmember, Councilmember Willmus stated that he'd like to hear how involved the HRA wanted to be in looking at commercial areas; and sought HRA input in the near future as to whether an EDA or the City Council using its port authority powers to assemble certain parcels. 


As part of the HRA's strategic plan, Councilmember Willmus encouraged the HRA to look at what it was currently undertaking and what things could be dropped off, such as the annual Home and Garden Fair, given the amount of HRA and other department staff time and resources involved, creating a big hold in the annual budget.  Councilmember Willmus suggested there may be a different way to offer the portions of the Fair that encompassed what residents found important, such as a speaker series, which would be less impactful to the bottom line.


For his personal HRA priorities, Councilmember Willmus spoke in support of Twin Lakes, Southeast Roseville, Har Mar Mall, with Rosedale being more long-term than short-term as a consideration.  Councilmember Willmus suggested that the HRA immediately address the southeast Roseville and Twin Lakes issue and provide their feedback on what role the community should play, and whether or not the City had missed the boat for housing development in Twin Lakes.  Councilmember Willmus opined that there was a need to balance viewpoints out and work toward common ground.  If a master developer was pursued or city-assembly of parcels to market development projects toward head-of-household jobs, Councilmember Willmus opined that this would move things along in the most desirable way.


Chair Maschka opined that this involved in part the evolution of the HRA from its initial formation to their current role.  Personally, Chair Maschka expressed his appreciation for motion.


Mayor Roe noted the partnership of the City Council and HRA that would be further informed by the upcoming City Council retreat discussion.


Councilmember Etten agreed that the City needed to step up to the development plate, and noted the City Council's reluctance to do so if based on tonight's earlier discussion.  Councilmember Etten stated that this bothered him, and questioned if the City Council was a willing player.  As an example, Councilmember Etten referenced recent infill development of blighting holes in the City of Mounds View along the Highway 10 corridor, including housing.  In his discussion with Moundsview representatives, Councilmember Etten noted their comments that they had various tools available to accomplish this redevelopment and were willing to use those tools rather than second-guessing projects when they came forward.  Whether or not the City Council developed an EDA, which he supported the City Council to take the lead on as EDA role due to major implications and the much higher visibility of the City Council, Councilmember Etten questioned if the City Council serving as a Council or EDA was willing to put up the significant money required to acquire land in Twin Lakes, noting it was a big commitment.  In other words, Councilmember Etten noted the need to be willing to spend big money and take a big risk.


Chair Maschka opined that with a master developer approach, the money and/or risk would not be as great.


Councilmember Etten responded that the Twin Lakes Redevelopment Area previously had a master developer and that process didn't work.


Chair Maschka noted that the Center Pointe and Lincoln Drive development areas were examples of master developments that had worked in Roseville.


Mayor Roe opined that he didn't think the master developer process caused the problems in Twin Lakes.


Councilmember Etten noted the perception in the development community with Roseville's history.


Chair Maschka concurred, opining that the development community needed to know the City was going to work with them, and not continually get shot in the foot.


If the City chose to work on something that big, Councilmember Etten opined that the HRA needed to be a part of that.  Councilmember Etten noted the success of the Dale Street Project, at least the planning portion as it related to redevelopment and housing.


Councilmember Laliberte agreed with Chair Maschka's areas of priority and assured that they would be discussed at the City Council retreat.  However, Councilmember Laliberte stated that she shared the concerns laid out by Councilmember Willmus as to how much the HRA and staff could take on and accomplish and accomplish well; and what items could be moved to the side or be delegated to someone else rather than the core pieces led by the HRA which was yet to be determined.  Councilmember Laliberte opined that she found creation of an EDA an interesting idea, since she had long been interested in more marketing of the City, allowing it to be selective about its redevelopment by clearly identifying what was desired and who was responsible to perform the work and how to envision that redevelopment, all important aspects.  Councilmember Laliberte noted the current reactive approach to whatever pops us that continued to create a patchwork and piecemeal approach that continued to haunt the City, especially in the Twin Lakes area.


Chair Maschka opined that if the City Council created the vision, the HRA and Community Development Department should be taking the next step with that vision to develop those relationships.


As a practical thing specific to the Dale Street Project, Councilmember Laliberte suggested development by the HRA of a dashboard or "work in progress" reporting system providing status reports and updates included in City Council meeting packet materials monthly to keep everyone accountable.


Chair Maschka concurred that having those metrics of progression would be a good idea.


Regarding priorities listed by Chair Maschka, Mayor Roe agreed with the southeast Roseville and Twin Lakes redevelopment as needing immediate prioritization, but suggested Har Mar Mall and Rosedale were farther out, recognizing that the recent rezoning of Har Mar Mall was intended as part of a future vision.  Mayor Roe note that he and Councilmember Laliberte had preliminarily discussed the value in marketing Roseville to the development community to take advantage of infill development opportunities, and make connections and build relationships now to take advantage of future options.  Mayor Roe noted that there may be a need to outsource this specialized work versus expecting that expertise from in-house staff.


Mayor Roe concurred with Councilmember Etten's comments regarding the City Council's willingness to step up, but clarified that even with bonding unless via a TIF revenue bond as used in Twin Lakes, there was no free money and money was either coming from the project generating an increment or from taxpayers.  While there was always reluctance to do something that would impact taxpayers, Mayor Roe noted that realistically there would need to be some impact to taxpayers, and everyone needed to be on board when decisions were made even though individuals had their personal points of view.


Chair Maschka addressed the advantages of revenue bonds that could lock in current interest rates now that may not come along again for a long time; thus the HRA's interest in having those discussion with bond counsel.


Councilmember McGehee opined that the HRA didn't have too much on their plate; to which Chair Maschka concurred.


In terms of a partnership between the HRA and City Council, Councilmember McGehee opined that the City Council didn't have enough things of significant value on its plate.  Councilmember McGehee opined that the City Council needed to step up to the plate when something came along that would raise versus lowering the bar of overall benefit to the City of Roseville in general.  However, Councilmember McGehee opined that, in the past, the City had done a number of things that had not raised the bar or been helpful to long-term development, and therefore were not the right thing to do. 


As part of the City Council retreat discussion, Councilmember McGehee stated that she wanted to address the reason Roseville had a bad reputation in the development community due to not having a viable process in place and a vision that invited all discussion with everyone pulling in the same direction.  Councilmember McGehee expressed her enthusiasm for the Dale Street Project process, which she found to be amazing and credited the HRA for the time and effort spent pursuing that outcome, and result that no one in the community told the City Council not to spend TIF money on the project.  Councilmember McGehee noted that, even with unexpected delays with the project, residents continued to support the project and supported the vision even if another developer was needed to complete the project.  Councilmember McGehee opined that the City Council needed to achieve that community support for any and all projects before bringing a developer into the situation where they may be set up to fail, and further opined that it could be accomplished by following a process similar to that used for the Dale Street project as a successful role model.


Chair Maschka opined that one thing that made that process work was that for the first time, those residents people concerns understood the economics of the situation and were willing to compromise and recognize that dollars needed to be spent to make things happen.


Councilmember McGehee noted that education was an important component to reach compromises by all parties.


Chair Maschka concurred, however, he noted that at some point, the vote had to be taken.


Councilmember Willmus clarified that it was important to note with redevelopment on Dale Street and use of TIF funding, while residents were part of the process, their initial choice of single-family homes was not part of the final options of a, b or c.  Councilmember Willmus noted that their willingness to compromise was only after they found that the numbers wouldn't work for their first choice, and therefore they chose the lesser of three evils.  Councilmember Willmus concurred that the process in bringing everyone to the table was excellent, and the fact that the wheels fell off the project now was due to a lack of oversight, which fell directly on the City Council's shoulders and shouldn't have happened.  Going forward, Councilmember Willmus opined that assurances were needed that it would not happen again.


Regarding whether commercial development was preferable for the Twin Lakes area, and whether it should be under the auspices of the HRA or City Council, Councilmember Willmus opined that was an area of concern for him. 


Regarding utilizing TIF dollars, Councilmember Willmus clarified that there was no real upfront cost, since it eventually came back to the City.  However, Councilmember Willmus expressed concern for those city services as an upfront and ongoing cost that were not paid for as part of the project improvements, such as police and fire protection.  Councilmember Willmus opined that pay-as-you-go TIF was a good financing mechanism; but noted that he had trouble providing TIF financing for a project not having broader public support. 


In general when the Comprehensive Plan was updated, Councilmember Laliberte opined that HDR zoning designation was plopped in a number of places as a placeholder.  However, Councilmember Laliberte stated that she continue to hear repeatedly anecdotally from the community that the missing piece was for  transitional housing: not senior or assisted living, but middle-level housing for those moving from single-family homes with maintenance to those not having outside maintenance to address.  Councilmember Laliberte opined that the City needed to be proactive in finding places in Roseville for that infill housing option, which was currently lacking.  While the City had several options (e.g. Lexington Apartments and Overlook Drive), they were insufficient to serve the current and growing demographics and didn't turn over very fast, thus causing the community to lose good members of the community elsewhere.


HRA Member Lee agreed with those comments.


Mayor Roe noted that when the rezoning was revised, a lot of HDR was included, and it may be time to review those designations.


HRA Member Wall encouraged the City Council, at their upcoming retreat, to look outward and look big, even to the point of being outrageous.  Member Wall opined that the City needed to find a way to get things done, and differentiate Roseville from competing communities and seek opportunities to expand its tax base.  Member Wall suggested that the City Council agree on two things they wanted the HRA to accomplish yet this year, tell the HRA, and they would build their strategy on that directive.  While recognizing that the HRA did have a lot on its plate, Member Wall opined that it could pick and choose its projects or focus, and by the end of 2015 should be able to have several projects accomplished with measurable ends. 


Member Wall encouraged the City Council to not be afraid to talk to major developers and corporate CEO's for their ideas for high-end executive housing, a continued need for Roseville.


Mayor Roe noted that a key part was how to measure success in what was being done or attempted, which he found to be a missing component in the past in using strategic planning.


Member Wall opined that this was a responsibility to come back to taxpayers with results of what was being accomplished with their money.


Mayor Roe recessed the meeting at approximately 8:42 p.m., and reconvened at approximately 8:48 p.m.


12.         Public Hearings


13.         Budget Items


14.         Business Items (Action Items)


a.            Approve Creation of a Police Cadet Position within the Police Department

Police Chief Rick Mathwig and Community Relations Coordinator Cory Yunke were present for this item.


Chief Mathwig advised that this request was basically to resurrect the Cadet position removed in 2003; and provided an historical perspective of that former position, and requested reinstatement of the position to link the police department to and make it more representative of the community it served.  Chief Mathwig noted that the job description had been created in the 1990's as a reaction to potential officer applicants nearing the end of their educational program who were often attracted to other competing communities or agencies due to no vacancies in Roseville until an officer position opened up. 


Chief Mathwig summarized requirements for officer licensure in the State of MN.  Chief Mathwig noted that the Roseville Police Department was now served by its reserve officers and three community service officer (CSO) positions, but found it needed the addition of the Cadet position to make it ready to recruit qualified applicants.  As with many police agencies, Chief Mathwig noted that the City found itself behind the growing and diverse demographics of Roseville in representing the City's minority groups within the department itself and the community it served.  Chief Mathwig advised that the Cadet job description was modeled after the successful Brooklyn Center program and their leadership team, using lessons learned from them and their recommendations to not mix the Cadet and CSO positions.  Further details were provided in the RCA, lines 41 - 45.


Chief Mathwig advised that the intent was to prove the benefit of the program during the remainder of 2015, convincing the City Council of the position's validity for the 2016 budget cycle.  Chief Mathwig advised that funding for 2015 could be covered by grants, donations, forfeiture funds, and unused salary related to timing of hires for two current vacancies in the department.


Mr. Yunke echoed Chief Mathwig, opining that this provided a great opportunity to address disparities with minorities applying for jobs, and provided tuition reimbursement.  Mr. Yunke referenced his current work with soccer camps, and experience in recruitment through Century College in support of this requested Cadet position.


Councilmember Etten noted his request of Chief Mathwig by earlier e-mail exchange seeking long-term impacts for a full year's salary beyond 2015 and hiring timeframe compared to the estimated in April or May of 2015 and partial year costs.


Chief Mathwig noted the estimates, as detailed in lines 57 - 59 of the RCA, mirroring the CSO salary range. Councilmember Etten questioned what advantages or abilities the Cadet position provided versus the CSO position in finding minority candidates.


Chief Mathwig advised that the Cadet position could identify community leaders among minority groups through their interaction with those cultures and those potentially interested in the law enforcement field, made easier by having those discussions with someone they considered more of an equal especially when many of those cultures come from a background that had a negative view of law enforcement and needed a changed mindset beyond that provided from their previous experiences.  Chief Mathwig admitted that this would not happen immediately, but take time and effort to change viewpoints from one-on-one contacts.


Councilmember Etten questioned why the current CSO position was not or could not be just as effective.


Chief Mathwig responded that the CSO day-to-day responsibilities and positions were already packed and they were not able to dedicate sufficient time to address those diversity needs.


Councilmember McGehee shared the concerns raised by Councilmember Etten, opining that to her it seemed to be more of a scheduling issue, and if an additional CSO position was needed, Chief Mathwig should seek approval for such a position rather than creating a new Cadet position.  Councilmember McGehee further opined that efforts should be made to hire all CSOs to be language competent in an additional and applicable language, and be available for the community to become familiar with them as the face of law enforcement, and not simply pigeon-holed into their role as a CSO.


Referencing another concern she had with packet materials on this item and similar job descriptions, Councilmember McGehee noted her phone contact with Chief Mathwig and Human Resources Manager Eldona Bacon and clarification that the Cadet position was not actually considered "exempt," but was a typographical error and the Cadet and CSO positions were both "non-exempt" positions.  Since both positions were part time, and did not receive benefits, Councilmember McGehee questioned why the Cadet position would be eligible for tuition reimbursement and suggested the need for the Police Department to consult further with Human Resources to address this issue.  Councilmember McGehee opined that, if this position was eligible for tuition reimbursement, other part-time positions should also be eligible.  Councilmember McGehee opined that, from her review and understanding in consultation with the Human Resource Manager, the CSO and Cadet positions had identical job descriptions other than hiring requirements for additional language abilities and the ability to assign additional duties to the Cadet position as suited.  Councilmember McGehee opined that, if the Police Department did not have sufficient CSOs, they should ask for another CSO position.


Specific to tuition reimbursement, City Manager Trudgeon clarified that a limited budget was available for any and all eligible City employees.  Mr. Trudgeon further clarified that the Chief's request for tuition was specific to the Cadet program and identified early on and not part of the City's existing tuition reimbursement totally $5,000 city-wide. 


Under those circumstances, Councilmember McGehee stated that she withdrew her support for tuition reimbursement as it created a problem that wasn't needed; and opined that the Cadet position itself should be separate from tuition; and that there was no need for a separate position from that of the CSO position.


Mayor Roe sought to clarify Councilmember McGehee's comment as to whether seeking an additional position was the problem for her or creating a separate job description.


Councilmember McGehee opined that requesting another CSO position was fine with her if it included similar duties outlined in the Cadet job description; and agreed with the philosophy that each CSO position have an additional language capability.


At the request of Councilmember Willmus, Chief Mathwig reviewed current positions openings (two) in the department and potential timeframe in filling those two positions from a list of 2014 tested eligible candidates as approved by the Police Civil Service Commission.


Chief Mathwig apologized for his error in the Cadet job description, noting that it should indeed by "non-exempt."


Councilmember Laliberte expressed her lack of understanding in a need to create a separate Cadet position from the CSO job description, other than to more easily identify slightly different job duties.  Councilmember Laliberte noted there were still limited opportunities to bring in new officers, and obtain other great candidates for those positions in a timely manner.  Councilmember Laliberte admitted that she was not entirely opposed to the Cadet position, but suggested only a pilot program with review as part of the 2016 budget process and depending on budget priorities at that time.


Mayor Roe asked Chief Mathwig to respond to the differing duties on the Cadet and CSO job descriptions and rationale for both.


Chief Mathwig noted changes to the existing CSO job description and reporting responsibilities, as well as supporting the Police Department's administrative efforts.  However, Chief Mathwig noted that part of those CSO duties did not include assisting diverse communities, which would be a function of the Cadet position to build bridges for minority recruitment from within the community to become Roseville police officers.


Mayor Roe sought clarification on the process if this 2015 pilot program was approved, and whether a position needed to be formally created or identified and made clear that it was only a potentially temporary position.


City Manager Trudgeon stated that was at the discretion of the City Council, advising that a job description still needed to be created either way and would be an annual budgetary issue.  However, City Manager Trudgeon noted that having a job description approved by the City Council was a vital step to fill the position, with every position subject to an annual review.


If the goal was to reach out to community minorities, Councilmember Etten suggested that a fourth CSO position be required to have multiple and diverse languages that were represented as one of those 60 languages recognized by the Roseville School District, and change the CSO job description accordingly for future hires, alerting the commanding officer that this was part of the CSO job.  Councilmember Etten opined that this would eventually provide outreach for 3-4 minority groups in Roseville.


Chief Mathwig expressed fear that this risked damage to both CSO and/or Cadet positions to include community engagement for all positions, fearing that effort would be lost in the shuffle.


Councilmember Willmus noted the funding mechanisms laid out by Chief Mathwig for the remainder of 2015, but expressed concern in 2016 and beyond, suggesting that if the Cadet position was created it may need to be revisited at some point.  Councilmember Willmus spoke in support of what the Chief was attempting to accomplish and recognized his concerns in co-mingling CSO and Cadet positions; and expressed his willingness to consider the position on an interim basis.


Councilmember McGehee expressed her opposition to Councilmember Willmus' support for an interim hire, and saw no problem co-mingling the positions based on her consultation with the Human Resources Department and the positions having similar job requirements, and ability for both to have positive interaction in the community and interact with diverse communities whether they themselves are diverse or not.  Councilmember McGehee opined that CSO's and officers needed to be able to do all things listed in their job descriptions and there should be no separation at all, and only serve as a disservice to CSO officers. 


Councilmember McGehee asked staff to confirm that non-exempt employees did not receive tuition reimbursement and report back; and if so, the City Council policy needed to be examined for potential change.  Councilmember McGehee advised that she personally had no problem funding an additional CSO position as a pilot program, but fund by separate arrangement.


At the request of Councilmember Laliberte, Chief Mathwig advised that his proposed funding mechanism was not being reallocated from other department needs, and was being derived from other areas outside current program and not earmarked for other uses, but was not sustainable long-term. 


Councilmember Laliberte noted the difficulty with a pilot program in attempting to hire someone interested in a short-term hire, continuing to have good candidates hired for other agencies.


Chief Mathwig suggested he could possibly fund a hire through 2016 somehow, but felt it should eventually be added to the City's tax levy beyond 2016.


Councilmember Laliberte agreed with the proposal suggested by Councilmembers McGehee and Etten to expand the role and duties for all officers on a rotation basis, understanding differences in reporting and functions, but allowing all officers and CSO's to perform some of that same work and pursue similar objectives.


In leveraging Cadet responsibilities, Chief Mathwig agreed that some duties could be rotated from year to year; essentially working off those efforts and relationships into other areas in the department and taking proactive steps to increase those diversities.


Councilmember Laliberte suggested tabling this request until those issues raised tonight, including college tuition, could be addressed.


At the request of Councilmember Willmus, City Manager Trudgeon and Chief Mathwig reviewed the proposed timeframe for hiring in April or May or 2015; and staff's ability to provide additional clarification on those issues raised tonight by the February 23, 2015 meeting, and not further delaying any potential 2015 hiring. 


City Manager Trudgeon summarized tonight's discussion by recognizing that the consensus was that this was something worth trying as a demonstration project and as part of broadening the CSO position job descriptions to incorporate these diversity efforts; and with the understanding that there are no guarantees it will be funded in 2016.  Mr. Trudgeon noted the need to further refine the job description, including what to title the position and if and how it differs from the current CSO job description.


Mayor Roe offered his support to take a further look at, especially related to a rotation model and how to write that into the job description.  Mayor Roe concurred with City Manager Trudgeon that the concept appeared to have some level of support from the City Council, and asked that staff review the current CSO job description and develop a list of pros and cons for City Council consideration at their next presentation.


For the benefit of Councilmember Laliberte's concerns, Chief Mathwig clarified that the tuition portion is not included in the Cadet job description.


McGehee moved, Roe seconded, TABLING action on this item and directing staff and Police Department management to review whether they could rotate the CSO position to cover duties outlined in the job description to incorporate duties of the current CSO and proposed Cadet position descriptions; and to also investigate and report back on the tuition issue.


                        Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


b.            Discussion of Civic Engagement Module and Request to Contract for Module Development and Website Integration

Communications Manager Garry Bowman and Community Engagement Commissioner and Website Subcommittee member Scot Becker were present for this presentation, as detailed in the RCA.


A demonstration model entitled "Speak UP, Edina!" was presented as an example from a current Granicus customer.


Councilmember McGehee opined that this program clearly had a better look that others viewed to-date, but questioned the limitations of and/or ability for residents utilize many practical features based on current city website traffic (e.g. utility bill receipts and/or recreation class sign-ups, alerting staff of potholes etc.).  Councilmember McGehee referenced the Roseville Issues Forum (RIF) website compared to this pilot program, and ways to filter and archive topics without extensive staff time to filter that information as well as staff time needed to become aware of and remove offensive posts as applicable. 


Mr. Becker responded that this module was built more for collaboration of comments to shape discussions as a valuable asset beyond that of RIF built for dialogue.


Mayor Roe noted that this module was by subscription on notice and would better manage participants not receiving unwanted e-mails in their inbox.


Councilmember Etten asked if staff envisioned one staff member periodically reviewing the site during the day to forward applicable posts to the appropriate department, and how much staff time would be required.


Mr. Bowman responded that he thought it would require some investment of staff time to stay on top of posts and steer them to appropriate staff for their response and/or comment; as well as to allow the City Council and staff to throw out ideas for which they were seeking feedback.  Mr. Bowman advised that he envisioned that he and/or Ms. Curti would need to monitor the site frequently. 


Mr. Becker noted that the Commission was cognizant that they were adding to staff's burden, but also wanted to be sure staff was aware of the issues within the community.


Councilmember Willmus expressed his appreciation that it allowed a platform for broader city awareness and the ability to weigh in with City Hall.  Councilmember Willmus questioned if staff had researched other communities using this module to see how it was working for them.


Mr. Bowman advised that he had only been able to reach out to the City of Edina to-date, but would further research current customers by asking Granicus to provide a list of other communities using their product.


Councilmember Willmus clarified that he was not concerned with Granicus but the concept in general, duly noted by Mr. Bowman.


Councilmember Laliberte expressed her appreciation that the module was open to the entire community and not just one neighborhood of constellation boundary or organization.  However, Councilmember Laliberte expressed concern in how the module was moderated and community engagement ensured to avoid degradation.  Councilmember Laliberte noted another topic addressed at the recent LMC conference was pros and cons of module moderation by a third party hosting the site versus staff filtering what is or is not seen.  Councilmember Laliberte noted one suggestion made during the conference was that the community could vote thumbs up or down on items they found offensive and didn't want included on the site versus staff having to choose what does or does not get posted.  If the module is pursued, Councilmember Laliberte asked that the follow/share option be used and an option be included that provided a opportunity for community volunteers connecting with issues; and that it include a process or ability to report issues (e.g. potholes).


Councilmember Etten noted that the City's website already had this function available.


Councilmember Laliberte opined that there needed to be a way to promote it and make people aware of that option.  Councilmember Laliberte expressed her interest in hearing about best practices and lessons learned from others using the product since starting its use, and how much staff time.  If the survey function was going to be used, Councilmember Laliberte advised that she would want to ensure that there was only one vote per IP address or that you could only weigh in once and therefore not succumb to the 80/20 rule that could come into play and skew conversations. 


Councilmember Laliberte asked staff why CivicPlus did not provide a proposal.


Mr. Bowman responded that the CivicPlus module was bare bones and not standalone like this module; and while introducing CivicPlus to the Request for Information, they did not request additional information or to be included in the RFP process.


Mr. Bowman advised that this module allowed the City to turn off or on which ever function they chose on the module, opining that this provided a value aspect.


Mayor Roe noted that, given the pending issues and questions raised tonight (e.g. moderation, staff time, research of other customer and city experiences), this item needed to come back for further consideration and potential action.


Councilmember Laliberte also asked for additional analytics from the City's website and what residents are using, which should provide information on what residents may or may not be interested in weighing in on.


When researching other communities, Councilmember McGehee asked staff to bring back information on external moderation options in an effort to understand the pros and cons of whether to moderate internally or externally.


If individual Councilmembers had additional items for follow-up, Mayor Roe suggested they advise staff off line before the next presentation.


15.         Business Items - Presentations/Discussions


a.            Request by the Community Development Department for Council to Review and Comment on: Proposed Ordinance Revisions to Roseville's Rental License Ordinance (City Code Chapter 908) and a Policy Regarding Memorandums of Understanding

Codes Coordinator Don Munson introduced this request for revision to the ordinance, Chapter 908 based on practical application and use in the field.  Mr. Munson introduced Dave Englund and Jan Rosemeyer in the audience who were also involved in the rental licensing program.


Curfew Extension

At 9:58, McGehee moved, Willmus seconded, extending the meeting beyond the 10:00 p.m. curfew to complete discussion of this item.


                        Roll Call

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

Nays: None.


Mr. Munson reviewed the areas recommended for revision as detailed in the RCA.


Councilmember Willmus questioned the recommended 90 day appeal period rather than a shorter period (page 8).


Mr. Munson noted the needed time for the appeal process including staff consideration, consultation with the City Attorney, development of an RCA for public hearing purposes, and availability of agenda time at the next City Council meeting, depending on their meeting schedule, allowing for more flexibility for property owners.


Councilmember Willmus noted the inclusion of the word "within," allowing for submission before that 90 day expiration as well.


Councilmember Willmus noted proposed revisions in the number of units available for inspection and those re-inspected providing a good representation of units overall throughout the cycle.


Councilmember Etten spoke in support of staff's proposed changes after practical use.


Mr. Munson advised that staff was attempting to get the revisions implemented prior to the next inspection cycle in May, and intended to return for action at the City Council's February 23, 2015 meeting.


Councilmember Laliberte advised that she was generally in favor of the revisions, and her concerns with the 90 day appeal period had been addressed and including "within" in the language; and expressed appreciation to staff for their review of the document after determining how it worked in implementation.


Councilmember McGehee thanked staff for the program, and their recommended tweaks, especially their recommendations (page 3, line 8) regarding coordinating inspections to avoid multiple inspections for residents. 


Councilmember McGehee suggested some type of incentive that could be offered to ensure background checks could be required not only for the person on the rental lease but as a follow-up for any and all additional people moving into a unit, that they also be subject to the same background checks.  Councilmember McGehee opined that this could alleviate problems found in some buildings and around the city in general; and asked that staff report back if that was a possibility.


Councilmember McGehee sought further incentives to create smoke-free buildings that could provide additional extensions for review, since fire was a big issue in many of these buildings and would address the desire to reduce that liability.


Mr. Munson advised that he would look into those suggestions as part of staff's follow-up.


Councilmember Willmus referenced Attachment A (pages 2 and 3) and the inspection of units.


Mr. Munson clarified the inspection cycle, whether new or as part of the renewal cycle, with 25% of 100% of the units initially inspected, and then 25% of those first units re-inspected as part of the next inspection cycle; with the inspector having a list of those previous inspected units.


Councilmember Etten suggested additional language at the end of the statement to provide greater clarity, such as "previously inspected units."


City Attorney Gaughan advised that he would work with staff on wordsmithing language before the February 23, 2015 meeting to further clarify that provision.


In terms of the appeal process, Mayor Roe noted the difference in the response from the property owner from 10 days for land use appeals to 30 days for this appeal, and questioned the difference.


Mr. Munson responded that this language was similar to that used in the City's Repeat Nuisance Ordinance, allowing time for a building manager to consult with a supervisor if necessary, fund the needed improvements as applicable, and then complete the work.  Mr. Munson opined that staff found only 10 days to be to short of a time for them to accomplish this process.


Community Development Director Bilotta responded to Mayor Roe's concerns, noting that variances for land use issues were of a limited appeal nature; but with this application potentially affecting numerous units, and whether or not covered by code or not, staff required more time to work with the property owners, and perhaps even perform another inspection or walk through the building with them to address various issues.


Mayor Roe noted the need for staff to work with the City Attorney on language clarification as noted, in addition to their other recommended changes and as discussed tonight.


16.         City Manager Future Agenda Review


17.         Councilmember-Initiated Items for Future Meetings


18.         Adjourn

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

                                    Roll Call

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

Nays: None.