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City Council


City Council Meeting Minutes

July 13, 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

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

Mayor Roe thanked citizens for their participation in the 2016 budget process by submitting their comments.  Mayor Roe encouraged additional comment through various options available online, in person or by phone contact with City Manager Trudgeon at 792-7021.  Mayor Roe expressed pleasure in the number and variety of input received to-date; and publically thanked Councilmember McGehee for her idea in suggesting this outreach opportunity.


6.       Recognitions, Donations and Communications


7.            Approve Minutes


8.            Approve Consent Agenda


9.            Consider Items Removed from Consent


10.         General Ordinances for Adoption


11.         Presentations


12.         Public Hearings


13.         Budget Items


14.         Business Items (Action Items)


15.         Business Items - Presentations/Discussions


a.            Receive the 2016 City Manager Recommended Budget

Additional budget comments received from residents after distribution of the meeting materials were provided as a bench handout, and made part of attachments to the staff report detailing the 2016 City Manager Recommended Budget dated July 13, 2015.


City Manager Patrick Trudgeon presented broad highlights of the 2016 City Manager Recommended Budget, providing a copy of the presentation slides as part of the staff report.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that his priorities in this budget are to continue the level of and quality of services for residents, and to provide a context from which the City Council can make decisions on the not-to-exceed preliminary levy on September 14, 2015.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that he and staff had referenced community aspirations, the most recent community survey, and public input to-date in developing 2016 budget goals.


As detailed in the staff report and presentation slides, City Manager Trudgeon reviewed budget priorities; a breakdown of non-property and property tax expenditures and percentages impacting the levy in addition to fees and other revenue sources beyond the levy itself; and how they differentiated.


In an effort to further clarify Mayor Roe noted that the presentation includes references to both expenditures and to the revenues that support those expenditures. Thus, there are references both to how much the projected spending will increase or decrease relative to this year's budget, but also how much different revenue sources will increase or decrease, and that the percentages are not always the same as a result of whether they refer to spending levels or revenues. City Manager Trudgeon noted the 2016 non-property tax-supported budget is projected at $23,367,130, a decrease based on fewer capital expenditures from sanitary sewer and stormwater funds, which occurred cyclically and the breakdown shown on the graph presentations.


Mayor Roe noted these expenditures went beyond maintenance, with payments for charges included to the Metropolitan Council for water and sanitary sewer charges. 


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, City Manager Trudgeon confirmed that the water/sanitary sewer fees also impacted the City's residents and businesses.


City Manager Trudgeon continued with the presentation, including percentage increases in levy and non-levy areas specific to projected spending and comparisons with the 2015 budget and actual expenditures to-date.  Mr. Trudgeon noted the majority of increases were due to capital costs and personnel services.  Mr. Trudgeon further addressed additional spending allotted for the Capital Improvement Program (CIP) beyond that originally programmed or planned based on revised needs and projections.  Mr. Trudgeon noted that 60% of the 2016 budget was represented in CIP spending, and 40% toward the operating tax levy increase.


City Manager Trudgeon addressed each proposed area, including a proposed increase in the cost of living adjustment (COLA) of 2% for employees as per the previously-adopted City Council policy based on the consumer price index (CPI) and Minneapolis/St. Paul ECI using current data, which will be adjusted as the year progresses, with 2nd quarter numbers scheduled for release the end of July.


Discussion included local versus national CPI data, with Finance Director Miller advising that they were comparable; and City Manager Trudgeon advising that both will be reviewed as the year progresses for accuracy.  However, City Manager Trudgeon encouraged the City Council to support a 2% COLA for employees for consistency with union employees and to remain competitive in the marketplace with peer communities and retention efforts of experienced employees.


In his recommendation for seven new full-time equivalent (FTE) employee positions as outlined in the RCA, City Manager Trudgeon reviewed each, rationale for each position, and how those positions would be funded and levy impacts for each position as well as those positions proposed from non-levy funds. 


City Manager Trudgeon advised that, even though requested by individual departments during their previous presentations, he was not recommending the positions for a mental health impact police officer, or that of an intern for the administration department.  While both positions had merit, Mr. Trudgeon noted that he was not recommending them at this time.


City Manager Trudgeon advised that, after having seriously taken each of the following requests into consideration from initial department requests, he had not included the following requests in this 2016 City Manager Recommended Budget:

·         Police Department request for a mental health impact officer

·         Administration Department request for an Intern position

·         Parks & Recreation Department request for additional emerald ash borer (EAB) funding

·         Fire and Park & Recreation Department requests for additional building management services for the Fire Station and Skating Center (deferred for another year with review for the 2017 budget, and allowing more opportunity to see how this arrangement is working with McGough Facility Services

·         Public Works Department request for funds to remodel Public Works Department

·         Fire Department request for additional medical supply funding


Regarding rental income for new or updated park facilities, City Manager Trudgeon advised that revenue was not at 100% to cover operational costs, utilities and maintenance; and therefore he was recommending a.50 FTE to better monitor and coordinate this effort. 


Regarding the proposed Finance Department Intern position, Councilmember McGehee suggested having a part-time employee versus an intern in that position in order to ensure specialized customer service continues.  Councilmember McGehee opined that the current employee has that experience now and further opined that residents would not be as well-served by intern college services as with a regular city employee.  Councilmember McGehee stated she has no problem in splitting the position between employees, since it is such an isolated spot already, but reiterated that with the current employee already performing that work, an entry level receptionist position would better serve the entire community.


City Manager Trudgeon assured Councilmembers that administration would continue to review the position and its make-up, but the goal was to provide consistency, as well as being sensitive to the cost of employees versus students, while also avoiding a "revolving door" situation as well.


City Manager Trudgeon reviewed the lucrative potential of the Deputy Registrar office (license center) and potential increased revenue with expanded dedicated staffing and organization to address passport and auto dealer license needs, as well as enhancing supervision.  Mr. Trudgeon noted the interest in growing that revenue source as well as responding to competition received from other area Deputy Registrars.


As detailed in the RCA, City Manager Trudgeon addressed proposed positions in the Information Technology (IT) area to address the dramatically increased needs of Roseville itself, as well as those other agencies and municipalities supported by this function and their applicable cost-share.  Having taken the opportunity over the weekend for a ride-along in a squad car, Mr. Trudgeon reported on his observations, opining he had a new appreciation for officers and the complications in using technology advances to perform their jobs, both in the Police Department, but also in the Fire Department with their new CAD system.  Mr. Trudgeon noted the need for IT staff to address technology problem and issues as they occur to allow public safety personnel to perform their jobs; and advised that this goal was driving a lot of the local needs identified in this area of the 2016 budget.


At the request of Mayor Roe, City Manager Trudgeon confirmed that the projected costs for the City of Roseville for the new staff positions was inclusive of benefits, not just salary.


In his recommendation for using reserves, City Manager Trudgeon advised that he was proposing the use of $375,000 in General Fund reserves to moderate the 2016 levy increase.  While he recognized this was not a sustainable practice long-term, Mr. Trudgeon noted this would leave that reserve fund at 37% projected, in line with the City Council policy of holding reserves between 35% and 45%.


City Manager Trudgeon publically acknowledged the work of Department Heads and their respective staffs in allowing reductions for the 2016 budget from the 2015 budget as outlined in the RCA.


Discussion among Councilmembers and staff included projected retirement of the current Fire Marshal in 2016 and planned staffing of that position by adding those duties to one of the Battalion Chief positions based on their expertise; continued elimination of the Fire Inspector position and Fleet/Facilities Superintendent positions as addressed in 2015; clarification that the $419,000 identified as additional expenditures in the 2016 property tax-supported budget did not include transfers, nor were they specific to line item expenses.


Further discussion included the eliminated request for medical supplies clarified as those over and above current supplies replenished as required from Allina to the Fire Department; and clarification of the tax levy and impact projected for homeowners (lines 175 - 183 of the RCA) based only on the City portion of the tax bill and for a median value home, at this time verified by Finance Director Miller at $216,000.


In conclusion, City Manager Trudgeon reviewed identified priorities and goals as they connected to the proposed 2016 budget and tax levy through growing non-property tax revenues through expansion of City business enterprises; through leveraging partnerships to reduce costs while increasing productivity; by reorganizing service delivery to more efficiently utilize tax dollars and lessen future costs; and through the strategic use of reserve funds.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that a lot of staff focus and hard work had gone into this proposed budget; and from his perspective, opined it was the absolute minimum moving forward and represented staff's best efforts in identifying what was needed to continue to operate realistically.  While recognizing there may be some desire to further lower those numbers, Mr. Trudgeon opined it would hurt service delivery, and noted that if the levy capital increases were factored out, an increase of only 1.4% was identified in the operational portion of the budget.  Mr. Trudgeon noted that past City Council directives, targets, and discussions had driven development of this recommended budget.


City Manager Trudgeon reviewed the next steps in the 2016 budget process and projected timelines:



Next Step

July 14, 2015

Presentation of City Manager Recommended 2016 Budget to the Finance Commission

August 10, 2015

Public hearing at the City Council

August 11

Public hearing at the Finance Commission

August 17, 2015

Joint meeting of the City Council and Finance Commission

September 14, 2015*

City Council adoption of the 2016 Preliminary Budget and Levy

October 19, 2015

City Council discussion on a 2016 Final Budget and levy

November 30, 2015

Final City Council discussion of 2016 Budget/Levy

December 7, 2015

City Council Adoption of 2016 Budget, Levy, Utility Rates, and Fees

*City Manager Trudgeon noted that there had been no legislative changes affecting the Housing & Redevelopment Authority (HRA) budget and levy, so a Preliminary Levy would need to be adopted on September 14, and a Final on December 7, 2015.


At the request of Mayor Roe specific to potential levy impacts for 2016, City Manager Trudgeon advised that final analysis based on actual costs and projections for 2016 were still pending as specific to utility fees.  While recognizing that spending in several of those utilities had decreased, Mr. Trudgeon noted that whenever utility fees were used to fund a position, it increased fees proportionally.


At the request of Councilmember Willmus regarding the impact to homeowners (RCA page 4), Mayor Roe and City Manager Trudgeon identified and clarified for the public the different percentage increases and average taxpayer impacts used based on levy and dollar increases.  Mr. Trudgeon noted the percentage to pay attention to at this time was the projected levy increase of 3.65% from 2015 to 2016.  At the request of Councilmember Willmus, Finance Director Miller further clarified the 2015 budgeted amount for COLA was 1.4%; and confirmed that at this point in 2015, the CPI was flat based on May figures until updated as previously noted.


Councilmember McGehee stated that she still had a problem with the budget process, and read through the 2016 CIP expenses per department, but not yet vetted by staff, the City Council or the public.  Councilmember McGehee opined that this happened every year in not performing that vetting until later in the process and usually immediately before the final levy is adopted and not allowing for any meaningful dialogue or consideration about funding, creating misperceptions or misunderstanding of what is or is not being funded based on those last-minute updates, or pulling funding from reserves.  Councilmember McGehee proposed that this practice no longer be continued to avoid getting the City in the same fix it was in eight years ago when the CIP had to be recreated.  With this CIP document providing a clear, long-term projection of CIP costs, not just a "wish list," Councilmember McGehee suggested it be addressed as part of the first budget glimpse allowing for ongoing transparency in line with the budget process and City Council policy.  Councilmember McGehee opined that the City's governance would be better served by not fixing a levy percentage before incorporating CIP information early in the budget process.


Regarding the budget in general, Councilmember McGehee expressed appreciation for and opined that this was the best presentation she'd seen as far as clarity; and not just how it's always been done which was not always the best way.  By including the CIP, utility charges, and other fees as part of this initial thought process before November, Councilmember McGehee opined it would provide a better picture of the total potential impact on homeowners, and would keep that impact in the picture earlier in the game.  Councilmember McGehee suggested it become the practice for staff to vet the CIP, utilities and fees, as part of presenting numbers to the City Council and Finance Committee before moving forward in the process.


Specific to the CIP, City Manager Trudgeon clarified that the numbers provided in the CIP are those based on previous City Council discussions and therefore programmed in accordingly.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that the intent was to provide opportunities in August to dig deeper into the CIP for accuracy and timing updates, but the proposed CIP budget currently reflects those past discussions and decisions.  Mr. Trudgeon acknowledged Councilmember McGehee's desire to have information available earlier for the total package driving the budget and level, as well as the total cost of utilities.


Specific to CIP funding, Mayor Roe noted it was made up of two-parts: those things needed for purchase next year, and the long term costs that need to be funded from the tax levy.  Mayor Roe noted it wasn't a "one for one" deal, and as an example, the 2015 CIP funding had been saved for over the last few years similar to a savings account.  Mayor Roe noted an apparent disconnect between the initial annual $398,000 projected over the next twenty years was currently only a best guess, and additional dollars were added in 2015, as they would be going forward in the future to adjust that savings account adequately fund those items as they're updated annually. 


Councilmember McGehee clarified that she was talking about the levy funding needed to support those line items annually; and the need to review them to determine their accuracy and whether the $398,000 set aside is sufficient.


Mayor Roe concurred that, at this point in the budget process, understanding and vetting utility fees and other fees, as well as the CIP, would be beneficial earlier on based on the most up-to-date information.  Mayor Roe noted this may suggest that, as the Finance Commission reviews the budget schedule, adjustments may be required for the 2017 process that would incorporate the CIP and fee schedule by this time in 2016.


Councilmembers McGehee and Laliberte spoke in support of that as a policy and process.


Councilmember Laliberte agreed completely, noting that having those components earlier and then pulling everything together later in the year would provide a more accurate picture and allow for more dialogue earlier in the process.  Councilmember Laliberte expressed her interest in having CIP analysis to determine if it was still on track and the costs remained in line with the last analysis.  Councilmember Laliberte noted only one meeting of the Finance Commission was scheduled after that to analyze the CIP.  Councilmember Laliberte opined some additional work may be needed before the City Council is asked to adopt something.


Mayor Roe suggested two analyses for the CIP: one by the Finance Commission and their recommendations to the City Council, and one allowing for additional considerations before the third meeting out.


Councilmember Laliberte noted previous discussions of the City Council and decisions not to fully-fund the CIP in past years and how that is impacting 2016 and beyond projected needs and funding.


As part of the analysis, and recognizing the need to catch up, Mayor Roe noted the learning curve with the updated CIP since it's only been operational for the last 2-3 years; and shifts made during the 2014 and 2015 budgets based on each year's updated those CIP projections.


At the beginning of 2015, Councilmember Laliberte noted discussions about the future status of the Fairview Avenue fire station; as well as discussions about the future location of the License Center if other than at the current leased facility.  Before positions and responsibilities are fully considered, or additional monies put toward the License Center, Councilmember Laliberte suggested reviewing the other pieces going into that consideration, including whether or not to change hours to meet customer needs.  Also, if the License Center stays in that location, Councilmember Laliberte opined that it needed some cosmetic updates, to make it more presentable to clientele to make sure clients preferred to come to the Roseville License Center versus a competing Deputy Registrar's office.  In other words, Councilmember Laliberte suggested ways to increase revenue versus just adding additional staffing.


City Manager Trudgeon responded that, at some time in the near future, staff would be bringing both those issues before the City Council.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that Finance Director Miller and License Center supervisory staff monitored and adjusted hours frequently to meet current needs; and felt the current hours sufficiently serves customers.  While more customers may be found if hours were extended, Mr. Trudgeon noted the additional cost of employees, etc. did not justify extending those hours at this point.  Mr. Trudgeon further noted that some minimal investment had been made in the building over the last few years, but if the License Center was not relocated, more significant remodeling would be required, whether in 2016 or in the near future. 


At the request of Councilmember Laliberte, Finance Director Miller confirmed that only a few thousand dollars had been spent for those minor remodeling or maintenance issues to-date.  At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Miller further clarified that identified mold issues had been immediately addressed last year.


Based on her experience visiting the License Center, Councilmember Laliberte opined it was very cluttered, and needed some branding to identify the facility as a City of Roseville facility.  While not advocating making the current facility a huge service center, if the City intended to stay at that current location, if needed some sprucing up.


Specific to the old Fire Station and in response to Councilmember Laliberte's comments, City Manager Trudgeon advised that the building is used for significant storage by the City, and if it was sold, repurposed or otherwise used, an alternative storage option for those materials would also be needed.  In his discussions earlier today with Community Development Director Paul Bilotta, Mr. Trudgeon advised that they had discussed some options, in addition to finding an option for storage needs for the facility's future use.  Mr. Trudgeon noted the advantage in the City owning the property, and advised that focus would be given to holding those discussions in the near future to address City Council and resident expectations, costs and other considerations as part of that analysis.


Regarding the Fire Department, Councilmember Laliberte sought further discussion and explanation regarding current and proposed duties of Battalion   Chiefs and absorbing the duties of the Fire Marshal at his retirement; and how that impacted the full-time structure of the department's reorganization.

City Manager Trudgeon responded that the initial restructuring to full-time included Captain positions at the level immediately below that of Battalion Chief; but after further consideration and as a cost-saving benefit, he and the Fire Chief had determined using Battalion Chiefs and an Assistant Fire Chief - as recently presented to the City Council - would provide a better approach for full-time supervision of shifts.  Whether supervision was accomplished through Battalion Chiefs or new Captain positions was immaterial, and Mr. Trudgeon advised that by using Battalion Chiefs available for 24 hour coverage, it created some redundancy issues with adding the Captain positions to cover that supervision; and therefore had been eliminated as an option.  Mr. Trudgeon further noted the advantage that by using the three Battalion Chiefs and adjusting those shift duties and tasks under that one position on duty, it created a more effective chain of command and took advantage of each Battalion Chief's different expertise; and by them directly reporting to the Fire Chief, it also established a set process without adding an additional Captain layer to that chain of command.  At the request of Councilmember Laliberte, Mr. Trudgeon addressed staffing positions and compensation advantages and disadvantages; and advised that he would take her comments and concerns into consideration and respond in more detail in the near future accordingly.


Councilmember Etten stated that, overall he appreciated this budget, but agreed it would be advantageous to look at the CIP and utility rates and fees earlier in the process.  Councilmember Etten expressed his interest in the City Manager's Recommended budget to the Finance Commission; and in noting this was staff's first shot at the 2016 budget, reminded his colleagues and the public that everything could not be accomplished at once, necessitating the need to address some components over the next few weeks as outlined in the City Council-adopted budget process and calendar.  Councilmember Etten noted that the City was relying and recognizing the professional expertise of the City Manager in gaining additional information as it became available and to forward additional recommendations to the City Council and community at that time, and as further input came forward from the public.


Mayor Roe sought clarification for the new IT position added in 2015, and his understanding it was not levy-supported for the Roseville portion of its costs funded through tower lease fees.


Finance Director Miller clarified that the IT position added in 2015 was initially funded by the License Center; and at the request of Mayor Roe, City Manager Trudgeon advised it was the plan to continue that funding allotment going forward.


Councilmember McGehee stated her interest in providing additional information, including those discussions held recently in closed session, impacting the Fire Department staffing and structure and the timing of more permanent staff.


Mayor Roe suggested a "plan B" or alternative approach for fire shift supervision.


Councilmember Laliberte noted the City's dependence in receiving fee information from the Saint Paul Regional Water Services and the Metropolitan Council and/or other agencies to recommend utility rates.  However, with the City Council requesting that staff bring that information forward sooner, Councilmember Laliberte questioned if that was feasible.


City Manager Trudgeon advised that, throughout most of the year and as annual membership requests and fees come forward, staff makes the best guess possible or assumptions based on the most current information.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that each would obviously need to be adjusted, and if significant, staff would highlight it as that impact affected the overall fee structure.


Reminding audience members of the presentation by City Manager Trudgeon again tomorrow night at the Finance Commission and upcoming public hearings, Mayor Roe invited public comment at this time; with no one appearing to speak.


b.            Receive Community Engagement Update from Mayor Roe and Councilmember Laliberte

As presented to the Community Engagement Commission (CEC) previously, Mayor Roe introduced this discussion based on his and Councilmember Laliberte's attendance at a League of Minnesota Cities (LMC) workshop entitled, "Experienced Elected Official Training." Attachments included some of the training handouts specific to public participation and engagement strategies. 


At the request of Mayor Roe, Councilmember Laliberte provided a summary of the training as documents were displayed; and impacts of looking at community engagement involvement through efforts of the CEC beyond the charge and areas of focus already identified when they were created.  Councilmember Laliberte suggested a more process-based versus project-based focus, with a clear vision for goals and measurement of those goals; allowing the CEC to identify issues needing community thought and solutions (e.g. SE Roseville already in process).


Mayor Roe and Councilmember Laliberte emphasized that community engagement was not the same as civic engagement, as previously defined and enlighteningly illuminated by Commissioner Theresa Gardella at a recent CEC meeting; and the need to be aware that government need not nor should it be at the epicenter of those community engagement efforts, but only one part, along with service/civic organizations, non-profits, citizens, businesses, and faith-based communities.  Councilmember Laliberte noted that government was only a part of the picture and community engagement did not revolve around the City. 


Mayor Roe and Councilmember Laliberte reviewed slides and initiated discussion on their content,  including "Ten Steps for Effective Citizen Engagement;" "International Association for Public Participation (IAP2) Core Values of Public Participation;" "Institute for Local Government (ILG) Principles of Local Government Public Engagement;" "International City Manager Association (ICMA) Citizen Engagement and Public Participation- General Organizational Assessment;" IAP2's Public Participation Spectrum (2 versions); "ILG's Spectrum of Public Engagement Activities."


The slides guided discussion as Mayor Roe and Councilmember Laliberte highlighted broader efforts for the City Council and public to understand the "why" of community engagement; and building a commitment to do it well and with a final goal or purpose in mind.  Mayor Roe opined that the City Council needed to commit to and adopt those core public participation values early in the process.


Other discussion topics by Mayor Roe and Councilmember Laliberte included being aware of gaps or people perceptions in engagement; being aware of and open to stakeholders from a broader perspective; connections and involvement; and being open to any opportunities to engage peoples in a valuable way to achieve the best possible outcome.  Additional considerations included measuring results to determine if the outcome satisfied people or if they felt they influenced the decision-making; and defining which engagement tools worked well and which did not for evaluation and future reference.


Councilmember Laliberte again referenced comments by CEC Commissioner Gardella regarding tracking priorities beyond outreach; and as information comes forward, the need to acknowledge it, express appreciation, and show how that information was used; opining that was a piece needing work by the City Council.  Councilmember Laliberte further opined that there was no system or process in place for that, or a habitual routine for the City Council and/or advisory commissions to use and upon which to focus, as well as at the staff level.  Councilmember Laliberte noted the need for that incoming information to be reciprocal.  Councilmember Laliberte clarified that the public participation piece was specific to the City's civic engagement portion, and how it worked with the community to make decision; with the community engagement piece much broader, and not within the City's control.


Mayor Roe referred to the CEC to make a recommendation to the City Council on principles of local government public engagement specific to the commitment to core participation values for City Council policy.


Mayor Roe then referenced the ICMA checklist/survey for assessing the organization and determining where improvement was needed.  Mayor Roe suggested the CEC have a role in working with staff, commissions and the City Council in performing that assessment; beyond the overall assessments of the organization and those related to specific departments and inventorying what was being done and what needed to be done.


Councilmember Laliberte noted anytime you performed an assessment you were essentially performing an inventory of available tools, or by creating a task force or commission, that tool box continued to grow; but this identified a formal step to use in assessing itself and the organization, and identify gaps and opportunities that were the greatest, the quickest, and having the most impact.


Mayor Roe noted the philosophy of engagement was basically to identify what you wanted out of the engagement and expectations of the people implementing the engagement process and those participating in it.  Mayor Roe noted part of those public participation goals and the promise to the public included  ranges between informing to consulting, involving, collaborating, and empowering - all increasing impacts on the decision and using various tools depending on the type of engagement involved.


Mayor Roe concluded by highlighting his and Councilmember Laliberte's recommendations to the City Council moving forward:

·         Determining the role of the CEC in the process to inventory the current situation;

·         Coming up with values or principles that are Roseville specific;

·         Looking at various spectrums to identify the engagement process and where it's at in that spectrum;

·         Determining how stakeholders can be involved, and recommendations for that process moving forward, using the SE Roseville situation as one example currently underway and what additional components were still needed;

·         How to create that public engagement process going forward, and adopted by the City Council, as future projects (e.g. Comprehensive Plan Update and/or Community Visioning Update) come forward with the CEC reviewing and becoming stewards of that process.


Already knowing the City will be involved in the Comprehensive Plan Update and Community Visioning Update, Councilmember Laliberte stated she would look to the CEC to work with applicable commissions to review how it was done last time, determine whether or not it worked, and whether to repeat that past practice or develop a revised process, and make recommendations to the City Council accordingly. 


Mayor Roe noted that this represented a very broad summary of over one and one-half days of information provided to him and Councilmember Laliberte.  Mayor Roe welcomed thoughts from the City Council going forward and informing decisions, such as the next agenda item, and how these principles may fit.


Councilmember McGehee expressed appreciation for the materials presented; and agreed with Councilmember Laliberte's identification of a current City Council weakness in recognizing public comment.  Councilmember McGehee asked if, when asking for public participation, the City Council was committed to the process to engage citizen participation and their expectations of that process, and in listening to that comment rather than a simple "thank you" but simply proceeding with an already determined plan of action.  Councilmember McGehee spoke in support of the CEC, with collaboration of staff, in developing an assessment tool to then allow assessment, whether by the community, the City Council or an outside party.


Mayor Roe clarified that he was not suggesting the CEC take on the sole role of assessor, but to collaborate as experts on community engagement; and providing a conversational approach or training for those performing the assessment.  Mayor Roe opined that if individual assessors were simply presented with a checklist that they didn't fully understand the purpose of, it made it difficult to make a valid assessment.


As an example, Councilmember McGehee spoke in support of training Departments to evaluate this program, performing that assessment under the direction of the City Manager; but questioned if the City Council could look at the assessment tool and actually perform it.


Mayor Roe opined that it may depend on the situation, using the example of a group exercise at the LMC training and various interpretations by participants and pre-conceived perceptions, which could also equate to the City Council and potential perceptions it held of citizens that were not necessarily accurate.


Councilmember Laliberte also referenced misperceptions the public may have of the City Council or visa versa, such as "the fix is in," or "they've already made up their minds."


Mayor Roe noted those perceptions were often informed by past experience; and as he interacts with the public, he frequently hears them state that once they understand the issue or project, they no longer have a certain perception, but are appreciative of having a better understanding.  Mayor Roe noted the need for all parties to own up to their particular misperceptions as part of the engagement process.


Councilmember McGehee referenced the recent Dale Street Project and its collaborative process as a very positive example of empowering residents through that process, and creating a large coalescing of neighborhoods or citizens around an issue.


Councilmember Willmus opined it may become difficult when comparing the Dale Street process, with a city-controlled property, when trying to implement or carry forward with that same process when it involves a third party or private property.


Mayor Roe noted the need at that time to identify the community engagement process; with the key going into it to acknowledge where that process was at the spectrum of engagement and depending on the situation as noted by Councilmember Willmus.  Mayor Roe opined that the real need was to get that spectrum identification out upfront, whether the City is controlling a project or only informing citizens or something in-between.


Whether it involved staff, the City Council, or CEC, Councilmember Laliberte added that while the City often referenced where something was at in the process, since people respond to visuals, she suggested using graphics to clearly identify the whole continuum and current status, such as is done in Planning Commission land use situations as part of the front page of each staff report, providing a clear picture of expectations.


Mayor Roe concurred, noting that not only identified where the process or project was at in the spectrum, but also created a promise to participants and a timeline for decision-making.


Public Comment

Gary Grefenberg, CEC Commissioner

Having worked on community engagement for over ten years, originally emanating from his service on an Imagine Roseville 2025 Task Force, Mr. Grefenberg expressed his appreciation for this information and the direction being taken by the City at this point.  Speaking on behalf of the CEC, Mr. Grefenberg opined that the CEC would like to actively partner with the City Council and staff.  Mr. Grefenberg noted his belief in the City's current staff and their commitment, but opined that commitment needed to be emulated and reflected in some of the departments and long-term staff.  Mr. Grefenberg opined that, when this information was initially provided by Mayor Roe and Councilmember Laliberte to the CEC, he had been overwhelmed.  Based on his initial response, Mr. Grefenberg opined that it could not be a total initiative of the CEC, but should receive devoted attention by staff and a buy-in at staff's higher echelons in addressing it as a challenge.  Mr. Grefenberg further suggested the City Council's commitment of financial resources, whether through a consultant or other tool, or by allowing an intern to work with the CEC and staff liaison above and beyond a commitment of financial resources.  Mr. Grefenberg thanked the City Council for reaching this real, authentic effort for engagement, and publically acknowledged it as a direct result of the leadership of City Manager Trudgeon and this City Council.  Mr. Grefenberg reiterated that the CEC could not be the leader, but was eager to serve as a junior partner to these community engagement efforts.


Theresa Gardella, CEC Commissioner

Ms. Gardella recognized references by Councilmember Laliberte to her work for the CEC on definitions and distinctions, prefacing that on why it was important for the community in looking at values and principles, whether for civic participation or community engagement and measuring whatever goals the City Council decides upon.  Ms. Gardella noted the need to be accountable, or have assessment tools in place moving forward; opining it was of value to the CEC's work and the City as well.  Ms. Gardella echoed the partnership comments of Mr. Grefenberg, noting the CEC could only go so far.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Ms. Gardella provided her definitions as referenced.

·         Community Engagement: A broader term including lots of different strategies, including civic engagement or participation rooted in relationships to provide ways to listen to and respond to the community about how to live the best life they can, and while not necessarily be part of the City Council's strategic effort, what residents want and how to make it happen.

·         Civic Participation or Engagement: A more narrow term in scope around a citizen's relationship to government or the government process; involving people in civic participation with a goal in mind, such as to improve city services.


Councilmember Laliberte thanked CEC Commissioners Grefenberg and Gardella for their efforts to-date; and noted the community engagement process would continue to evolve.

Mayor Roe acknowledged that, opining that this was only the end of the beginning. 


At the suggestion of Councilmember Laliberte, Mayor Roe concurred that as it fits into the process, it may be necessary to hold more than one joint meeting per year with the CEC as well.


Arlene Christiansen, Human Rights Commissioner

Ms. Christiansen spoke specifically to the IAP2 document regarding community engagement versus only civic engagement.  Ms. Christiansen opined that in the City Council considering partnering with the CEC, it should consider utilizing each of its advisory commissions, since that is their purpose to serve as advisors to the City Council representing all parts of the community over the entire spectrum, of budget, finance, human rights, etc.  If the City Council is seriously considering community engagement, Ms. Christiansen suggested it start by involving other members beyond the single aspect of the CEC.  If the City Council wanted to know how good of a job it was doing, Ms. Christiansen noted that advisory commissioners were representing government and the public.


Regarding using community engagement measurements by using advisory commissioner expertise, Ms. Christiansen suggested caution, since a person may have applied to a particular commission based on their interest, but many not be an expert in the field.  Ms. Christiansen opined this emphasized the need to consider the whole spectrum of talent and backgrounds, by looking to all advisory commissioners for input and involvement.  Ms. Christiansen noted whether or not the City Council chose to use an outside consultant if supported by the budget, there were already people having expressed an interest; and further noted the need to customize, implement and measure efforts.  Ms. Christiansen spoke in support of using graphics for the important component in showing the community where an issue or project was at in the process; but cautioned the need to keep it simple, since people didn't have time to search out the information by reading a narrative, but were more amenable to small bites of information provided via graphics.


Councilmember McGehee agreed with that suggestion.


Mayor Roe noted that got to the assessment item for follow-up by getting commissions involved in the assessment process, using all advisory commissions and their expertise and in determining measurements.


Ms. Christiansen noted the interest of the full CEC, and agreed with meeting more than once a year, perhaps quarterly for quick updates by the CEC, and if expectations of advisory commissions are clearly stated by the City Council, it could provide a quick update and check-in on what a commission should work on or what a relevant project may be.  Ms. Christianson noted this would also provide for customizing and measuring as previously stated as a goal; and expressed appreciation that the City Council agreed the community engagement process should not be static, and while it may be trial and error, it needed to be organic as communities and people change through growth, requiring reassessment after measurement.


Lisa McCormick, 2950 Wheeler Street North

Ms. McCormick suggested, in addition to advisory commissions, the City involve members of the public-at-large to participate in assessments of evaluating the process.  Ms. McCormick expressed her appreciation with this discussion and commended the City Council for its work in bringing this forward.  While hearing a commitment to community engagement, Ms. McCormick questioned where it was at in the process, recognizing that it took time and the community would continue to grow in the process.


Ms. McCormick pointed out to Mayor Roe her appreciation of the comments in customizing the IAP-2 process, and suggested formation of a task force to look at this, perhaps moving ahead of some of the principles noted in the handouts, and customizing it to Roseville.  Ms. McCormick referenced a recent statement of her neighbor Kathy Erickson, in recognizing the unique flavors of neighborhoods in Roseville that were not apparent in other first-ring suburbs, and thereby supporting the idea of customizing the engagement process and evaluation tools for Roseville.


Regarding the comments about the Dale Street Project and ownership of land versus private ownership, Ms. McCormick questioned if that may be another misconception, opining that until stakeholders were involved in the process, it may be found that they're closer together than initially thought. Further opining that everyone wants what's best for the community.


Reiterating her comments from several meetings ago, Ms. McCormick spoke to the development of a Code of Ethics, and displayed an example entitled, "IAP2 Code of Ethics for Public Participation Practitioners" also provided in training materials from the LMC conference attended by Mayor Roe and Councilmember Laliberte; and suggested it be included for consideration.


Overall, Ms. McCormick thanked the City Council for their good work.



Mayor Roe recessed the meeting at approximately 8:01 p.m., and reconvened at approximately 8:08 p.m.


c.            Community Engagement and Human Rights Commission (HRC) Structure Discussion

Mayor Roe referenced the RCA as the City Council considered whether or not to advertise the three current vacancies on the Human Rights Commission.


City Manager Trudgeon reviewed vacancies, and parallel work being done by the CEC, providing some options for consideration.  Mr. Trudgeon introduced Kari Collins, Assistant to the City Manager, and staff liaison to the HRC; noting staff liaison to the CEC, Communications Manager Garry Bowman, was also present in the audience. Mr. Trudgeon clarified that he was not advocating for any of the options; but only provided the information for the City Council to explore; and if no change was indicated at the end of those discussions, sought direction from the City Council to move forward with a future agenda action item to proceed in filling the vacancies.


Kari Collins, Assistant to City Manager/City Clerk and Staff Liaison to Human Resources Commission (HRC)

As part of this review and presentation of options, Ms. Collins advised that staff had entered into a service enterprise process and diagnostic of all volunteer opportunities in the organization, including how to grow participation, how to make service meaningful.  Ms. Collins noted that this came on the heels of process in assessing the overall organization and exploring the most efficient structure.


As detailed in the RCA, Ms. Collins referenced the three options outlined by staff for consideration by the City Council.  Ms. Collins noted this included the frustrations she and Mr. Bowman witness as staff liaisons to their respective advisory commissions; and parallel frustrations of commissioners who varied in their roles as "doers" versus "planners/advisors."  While opining that there were opportunities for either and/or both roles, Ms. Collins noted the frustrations of "doers" who desired to work toward a specific goal for their community; and interest of staff in minimizing struggles between "doing" and "discussing."


Ms. Collins identified the three options outlined in the RCA and their specific advantages and disadvantages; examples from other community advisory commissions (Cities of Falcon Heights, Arden Hills, Wayzata, and Brooklyn Park) and their community engagement efforts based on the demographics for each respective community.  If the City Council considered going with Option C, Ms. Collins urged them to provide greater clarify about the functions and roles; and while there are good intentions for advisory commissions to be organic, it often added to uncertainty for commissioners, subsequently leading to frustration.


If the City Council does consider a change in advisory commission structure for the HRC and/or CEC, Ms. Collins suggested allowing commissions to continue their efforts for the remainder of the year, and instate that restructuring in April of 2016 as terms expire; and given the activities scheduled by the respective commissions.


In focusing discussion, Mayor Roe suggested questions to staff at this point, and holding opinions and City Council feedback until public comment was heard to include it as part of the subsequent City Council discussion.


With respect to the HRC, Councilmember Willmus noted mention that they are a venue for human rights complaints or concerns; and asked for elaboration between the local and state human rights league; and retaining that aspect locally.


With most local human rights commissions created during the 1960's in a climate of very real human rights complaints Ms. Collins noted the local opportunities work in officially reporting those complaints to the state.  However, Ms. Collins noted the State Department of Human Rights now addressed those complaints directly.  Ms. Collins noted the difference in the local HRC providing an entity to voice concerns versus the more formal and intimidating prospect of complaining to the State Department; and differences in voicing those concerns in a less formal atmosphere or cultural vibe.  Ms. Collins noted the local HRC can provide that opportunity to allow voicing of those concerns, and attempting to resolve those issues without the formal complaint process.


Based on her experience when serving as an HRC Commissioner, Councilmember McGehee provided an example of local mediation based on cultural differences between neighbors and how the HRC facilitated that understanding without it rising to the formal level of a complaint to the state department.  Whether or not that was specifically in the purview of the HRC, Councilmember McGehee noted that the concern had been brought to the attention of the HRC and been resolved amicably.


Specific to the annual Human Rights Essay Contest, Councilmember Willmus asked about the status and interest of Roseville schools in carrying that forward.


Ms. Collins noted HRC Chair Wayne Groff's and HRC Commissioner Arlene Christiansen in tonight's audience to elaborate further if requested.  Ms. Collins advised that the Human Rights League invited essay prompts annually, and this year the Roseville HRC had submitted an essay question regarding the right to vote; which had been accepted by the State League, and given the City's high involvement with the League, noted that Roseville's essay question was frequently selected for use in crafting that year's essay effort throughout participants across the state. 


At the request of Councilmember Willmus, Ms. Collins noted recent meetings of HRC Commissioners with Roseville Area School instructors in addressing how to fit the essay question into their curriculum.  Ms. Collins noted it was often frustrating for instructors to fit it into the curriculum other than through extra credit focus.


Going back a number of years, Councilmember Willmus noted the interest and participation by numerous schools, including those from the private sector; and questioned why that was no longer evidenced, with only one school participating in the 2015 essay contest.


Ms. Collins responded that other schools were invited to participate in 2015, but had not done so.  Ms. Collins opined that the HRC has found a niche in working cooperatively with instructors and their curriculum about cultural awareness and education and efforts to bring cultural understanding to the forefront.  If that is a continued direction by the City Council to the HRC, Ms. Collins asked that it be clearly communicated.


If the City Council considered Option B, Councilmember Etten asked how a meeting would be structured or a year's worth of agendas to meet the different aspects of a much-broader group and much-broader interests.


Ms. Collins advised that she would recommend a larger commission; and task those participants, at a future meeting, to craft functions for greater clarity on which to focus efforts.  If a 9-11 member commission was created, Ms. Collins suggested using different subgroups to address those efforts, which she recommended the City Council direct those charges with the Commission and take time to detail tangible goals versus the current generic goal to "create greater awareness to community"  If the City Council desires a cultural celebration of some variety, Ms. Collins suggested that goal be written down as a collaborative effort by residents and the City Council to develop those details beyond this initial outline represented by the RCA.


Public Comment

Wayne Groff, HRC Chair

In response to why people join the HRC, Mr. Groff noted one reason was because of their concern that people's voices had not been heard historically; and noted the distinction between the HRC and CEC on that note.  Mr. Groff noted that most people groups had experienced some form of discrimination in the past; and the local HRC provided a non-threatening voice for them, providing a way to address those concerns locally versus at the state level where their complaint may not rise high enough to be addressed.  As an example from his past service on the HRC in another community, Mr. Groff noted the ability to facilitate a quick resolution in providing a human face of the City and in a less formal atmosphere than that found at a City Council meeting which many found intimidating or threatening. 


Councilmember Willmus clarified that he was not seeking a reason for a local HRC, but simply what its role involved or what it did; not why, but the actual process and differentiating between the formal state level complaint process and the local complaint process.


Mr. Groff responded that the HRC could also ensure fairness in the community for those feeling they've been treated unfairly; and noted the HRC's advocacy on behalf of the Karen community in housing issues and resolving issues that could have potentially resulted in evictions.  Mr. Groff opined the HRC provided an interface between the Karen community organization (KOM) and the City administration. 


Mr. Groff reviewed other roles of the HRC in hosting naturalization ceremonies, the annual essay contest, and serving as advisors to the City Council.  Mr. Groff noted a new youth commissioner is waiting to be sworn in, with her specific interest with the rights and public perceptions for handicapped people.


Arlene Christiansen

As the newest member of the HRC, Ms. Christiansen agreed with the separate role of the local HRC from the State; and as an immigrant, opined there was a need to understand human rights and difference in cultures; with the HRC serving as a safe place to talk about things or help others understand or be aware of issues.


In response to Councilmember Willmus regarding the annual essay contest, Ms. Christiansen provided a review of the 2016 process, and revisions to the process and information to teachers, most in response to meetings of HRC representatives and instructors regarding timing and their curriculum. Ms. Christiansen addressed relevancy of the 2016 question; and crafting of information for students and instructors to make it easier for their participation.


At the request of Councilmember Willmus, Ms. Christiansen confirmed that the 2016 Essay Contest will be open to all Roseville 6th, 7th and 8th graders at all Roseville Schools, whether public or private.  With Councilmember Willmus' concerns regarding declining school participation, Ms. Christiansen expressed her excitement with and provided a sample of the essay contest packet recently created by the HRC for the 2016 contest - and provided to the Human Rights League for their distribution across the state - to build excitement and respond to instructor request for a concise process and information providing more inclusivity.  Ms. Christiansen advised that the entry form, poster and instructions would be mailed to the principles of all public and private schools in Roseville using a mailing list provided by staff and then she would personally follow up with a phone call.

Councilmember Willmus stated his reason for pressing this issue was his observation of HRC meetings earlier in 2015 and essay contest discussions that provided conflicting information flowing back and forth.


In addressing specific logistics if the HRC and CEC is combined, Mr. Groff questioned how the HRC could get more done than currently being undertaken with constraints of time with a seven member commission of volunteers within a two hour timeframes.  If that remains the expectation of a combined commission, Mr. Groff opined that was not a viable solution.


If the City Council decides on the option for one combined commission, Ms. Christiansen asked that they ensure everyone would be heard, since there were a lot of expectations and a variety of goals; and the City Council would need to be very clear as to its expectations.  Ms. Christiansen opined that, with the current size of the HRC, they need to not feel they'd been swallowed up by the CEC, or no longer had a voice in whatever commission was created.  Whatever a 9-12 member commission was called, Ms. Christiansen opined it was important to have it even bigger with more volunteers (e.g. 12-15 people) to allow participation in a meaningful way, while recognizing the reality that volunteers also had family and other commitments; moved, or had other changes occurring; and their time and needs should be respected.  As an example, Ms. Christiansen noted the hours she had spent, in cooperation with Mr. Bowman, in creating the essay contest packet.


City Council Discussion

Councilmember McGehee noted her change in direction with this issue after listening to comment tonight.  Councilmember McGehee opined that, if the City Council is serious about the civic engagement process, that process resided with the CEC.  Councilmember McGehee expressed her personal value of the HRC in the annual essay contest, presenting ethnicity issues in the community as it continued to become more diverse, and having a non-threatening place to go locally for concerns.  In terms of cultural awareness, whether part of Rosefest or not, Councilmember McGehee opined that while they were important programs, ethnic groups could volunteer to promote those important programs.  Councilmember McGehee opined that there were two components: a policy or process component, and a community component.  Councilmember McGehee opined that the things the HRC has been working on were the community engagement component; and the civic engagement component is where the City Council helped in the process and evaluation.  In conclusion, Councilmember McGehee spoke in support of retaining two commissions, or Option C.


Councilmember Etten agreed that his view had shifted some; but opined these were not the only two commissions that should be under discussions; suggesting that maybe the HRC and Ethics Commission should be combined and meet quarterly with their roles and goals clearly revised.  Councilmember Etten expressed his appreciation in hearing the passion and relevant ideas of the HRC; and suggested reviewing and revamping how advisory commissions worked as a whole, rather than simply focusing on these two.  While there may be positive reasons to combine the HRC and CEC, after hearing comments from commissioners, Councilmember Etten suggesting leaving them separate for now to see how things grew; while recognizing that maybe some other combination would allow more vitality and excitement for those volunteer participants.


While recognizing the merit in all of the options, Councilmember Laliberte expressed concern in merging the HRC and CEC.  Councilmember Laliberte opined that the CEC should not have more responsibilities added to their plate by expanding membership at this time, or by increasing their scope of duties or functions, which she found unfair to them as a newly-created commission.  On the other side, Councilmember Laliberte agreed to be open to look at the role of the HRC, opining that the work they did, from her perspective, was not the work of an HRC whether from a complaint-based or other scenario.  While it would be great to have that in place if a complaint occurs, of course, Councilmember Laliberte opined she was their role more in the celebration, education, awareness, and diversity and sensitivity training realm.  Whether called an HRC or by another name not in line with the state human rights function, Councilmember Laliberte suggested it and the Ethics Commission needed meaningful work to avoid frustration.  Councilmember Laliberte suggested that clear direction be provided to any commission going forward, to make sure their charge was meaningful.  While appreciating the role of the HRC in bringing the naturalization ceremony to Roseville, Councilmember Laliberte questioned if the HRC needed to continue that handholding, opining staff could potentially continue to sponsor or host it on an annual basis without the HRC owning that work.  If there is still live in the annual essay contest, based on her observation and comments heard about its dysfunction in the past and Roseville being the only participate at the state level, Councilmember Laliberte stated she could support that, as long as it was recognized that the City of Roseville's role was not to support state human rights efforts.  Councilmember Laliberte stated she was open to renaming two individual commissions, combining them, or changing their schedule pending on the specifics the City Council wanted each to accomplish.  However, Councilmember Laliberte opined that the current "loosey-goosey" status could not continue to create frustrations for those advisors.


When creating the Finance and CEC Commissions, Councilmember Willmus noted discussions at that time included the possibility of the HRC becoming the CEC.  At that time, Councilmember Willmus stated he had fought for the HRC and CEC to remain separate, with the CEC a standalone commission.  Councilmember Willmus stated his further concern in overburdening the CEC as it currently exists; and his comments to staff when first discussing this was to have everyone in the room to weigh in.  That said, Councilmember Willmus opined that the HRC, even when fully populated, experienced issues with materials, a lack of commitment from some commissioners making it difficult for remaining members willing to go the extra mile and eventually and unfortunately burning out those committed commissioners.  Councilmember Willmus noted the need to be cognizant of that no matter the decision made.  For now, Councilmember Willmus spoke to leaving the HRC and CEC as two separate commissions; but reviewing their respective charge and scope of duties to determine what is still viable in today's reality.


Mayor Roe agreed with keeping the HRC and CEC separate, and agreed with reviewing their respective charges.  When revising the HRC charge before, Mayor Roe opined that it wasn't revised enough.  While also hesitant, as Councilmember Laliberte had expressed, appointing people to serve on the Ethics Commission, Mayor Roe opined it was worth looking at potential combining the HRC and Ethics Commission, and suggested deferring the joint meeting with the HRC scheduled for August to allow them to hold public and internal discussions with their new members as part of that process.  Therefore, Mayor Roe agreed that it made sense to make any changes at the start of the new term in April of 2016, and continue discussion on that process later in 2015 in anticipation of that.


Councilmember McGehee noted the ability for any advisory commission in creating out-of-commission task forces as needed.


Mayor Roe referenced the Brooklyn Park model, recognizing that you don't need to be on an advisory commission to become involved as a "doer," allowing residents to determine how and where they can make their community better by ad hoc service from the aspect of volunteer coordination, which could be part of all advisory commissions.


Councilmember Laliberte spoke in support of deferring the joint meeting with the HRC, and staff's recommendation to allow the HRC to complete their 2015 work.  However, Councilmember Laliberte tasked the HRC with giving thought to their charge going forward or if combined with the CEC or another commission (e.g. Ethics); and expressed her concern in moving forward for the remainder of 2015 with only four commissioners on the HRC, while also expressing concern about appointing new commissioners if the HRC evolves into something else.


Mayor Roe noted the appointments are not all for full terms.


In the next agenda item working on a uniform commission code, Councilmember Laliberte suggested changing that particular HRC tonight to five members for the remainder of 2015. When talking about the scope or function of the HRC, Councilmember Laliberte noted the difference in "doers" and "advisors," but clarified that all of the commissions are intended to be advisory commissions, with the exception of the HRC wanting to be doers, and questioned if that took on some other type of format since she didn't see the HRC coming forward as other commissions did in making policy recommendations to the City Council.  Councilmember Laliberte noted the care taken in creating the CEC in being clear that it was advisory on policy and process versus "doing," and reiterating the exception with the HRC.  When working on a revised scope for the HRC, Councilmember Laliberte noted the need to be aware of that distinction or history.


Councilmember Etten stated his discomfort in seating three new commissioners on the HRC if it remained up in the air; but expressed his preference in making it work short-term with those current commissioners having an understanding of the HRC and new people having a learning curve.  Councilmember Etten spoke in support of deferring the joint meeting the HRC to October and look at a new process in January of 2016.


Councilmember Willmus agreed with Councilmember Etten, opining that the City Council needed to take time to identify any changes to the HRC's charge, which would be difficult for new commissioners coming on board without having a clear direction for their role at this point.


Mayor Roe sought clarification of a technical point with City Attorney Gaughan regarding code language stating that the HRC had seven members and the current reduced level and what constituted a quorum, 3 or 4.


City Attorney Gaughan responded that it depended on the actual code language; but opined that the City Council had a mandate to fill any vacancies within a reasonable timeframe; and typically a quorum was based on the actual number of members.  After further review of the code, City Attorney Gaughan noted the HRC "shall" consist of seven members, and the City Council was therefore mandated to appoint seven members.


Further discussion included vacancy timeframes and expirations of terms, with City Manager Trudgeon advising terms expired respectively in 2016, 2017 and 2018; with the result that vacancies did not need to be filled at this time if a quorum was available. 


Mayor Roe opined that it made sense to not appoint new commissioners for the short-term and continue to work with those available.


Additional discussion included the historical perspective of commissioners versus those newly appointed; potential amendment of the code specific to the HRC to accommodate any quorum issues in the interim for adoption at the next meeting; and further review of specific issues by the remaining four members of the HRC at their next meeting and before the next discussion by the City Council.


Councilmember Laliberte asked the HRC to advise City Manager Trudgeon of their discussion and preferences for dissemination to the City Council.


Mayor Roe concluded that the City Council was supportive of retaining two commissions; agreed on the need to work on the duties/functions of the HRC and their title and any other issues; agreed to defer the joint meeting of the HRC and City Council; and work to resolve not filling or increasing membership until the HRC's new charge is defined.


City Manager Trudgeon expressed concern in getting that accomplished by the next meeting of the City Council; with Mayor Roe and Councilmember Laliberte strongly encouraging that be accomplished; or a special meeting scheduled if other items were also pending.


For clarity, City Manager Trudgeon reiterated the request of staff was to determine what would constitute a quorum, and how to deal with changing the specific number of commissions for a quorum.


As a second and separate piece, Councilmember Laliberte noted the deferral of the joint meeting from August to later in 2015.


d.            Discuss Uniform Commission Code

At the request of Mayor Roe, City Manager Trudgeon briefly addressed issues in developing a uniform code to governing the organizational structures for advisory commissions occurring over the last few years in attempting to consolidate common threads of regulations, resulting in the creation of a new Chapter 201 to City Code (Attachment B).  As provided in current City Code, Title 2 - Commissions (Attachment A) - and the new draft (Attachment B), Mr. Trudgeon noted those additions and those areas for deletion unless statutory requirements; and thanked Councilmembers Willmus and Laliberte for their input, as well as other Councilmembers over the past few years.  Mr. Trudgeon clarified that this draft is not intended for adoption tonight, and only as a starting off point for discussion and consideration of the concept of a uniform commission code.


New Chapter 201 - Advisory Commissions (Attachment B)

Councilmember Etten spoke in support of the new chapter, suggested several revisions and additional elements to the draft.


Page 2, Section 201.06: Organization

Section C: Specific to creation of committees, subcommittees and/or task forces within commissions, Councilmember Etten noted the need to differentiate between those that needed to come before the City Council for approval and those not necessary to do so.


Councilmember Laliberte agreed; opining that she saw them almost as opposites based on various comments and input to-date.  However, Councilmember Laliberte suggested that the first sentence provide that differentiation with the key words, "their own members," with those subcommittees made up of their own commission members, and reporting to the full body.


Regarding the formation of other subcommittees or task forces, if more clarity is needed, Councilmember Laliberte suggested that prior to a commission creating a new task force, in many cases that may bring in other people without a sworn oath to work on a specific issue.  Before they begin inviting the community to participate, Councilmember Laliberte suggested the commission make sure the sitting City Council is in agreement with that effort, and not created outside the purview of the commission's charge from the City Council.   Councilmember Laliberte clarified that this was the intent of the language that such initiatives be brought to a joint meeting of the City Council and commission for their direction and approval before beginning.


Mayor Roe suggested the last sentence provided that directive, "only after approval of the City Council."  Since subcommittees are only to be made of up commission members, Mayor Roe suggested striking the second reference to "subcommittees."


Councilmember McGehee questioned why volunteers needed to take an oath.


Mayor Roe noted this was a separate topic outside the amendments to Section 201.06.C.


Page 2-3, Section 201.06: Organization

Section D: Under the last sentence, Councilmember Etten suggested listing that sentence:,: "commissioners also agree to be available to residents of the city by providing a preferred phone number or email address that can be used on the city website and/or on print materials;" as a separate lettered item entitled, "Public Accessibility."


New Section F: Councilmember Etten further questioned if there was a need to have each served by a staff liaison, since it is mentioned at one point that a staff liaison will be available, but don't actually know who will serve that function at that point.  As a new item "F" under organization, Councilmember Etten suggested stating that each commission will be served by a liaison - as a conduit - and include a definition for that liaison role in this document.


Councilmember Laliberte spoke in support of having that definition included.


New Section G: Also under organization, Councilmember Etten suggested an additional item "G" regarding "New Commissioner Training," that ensures newly-appointed commissioners will receive such training by the Chairperson and staff liaison prior to their first meeting.  Councilmember Etten opined that training could be defined later but should include conduct, topics the commission is working on, and anything else that will help bring them up-to-speed.


Councilmember Laliberte also supported that addition.  Councilmember Laliberte noted training also involved annual ethics training.  Councilmember Laliberte suggested adding language to include that orientation specific to that commission as a separate section of broader training for expectations in addition to ethics training.


Councilmember Willmus responded that in addition to ethics training, the training referenced by Councilmember Etten would be unique to that individual commission.  Councilmember Willmus noted the need to include meeting a generic orientation for each commission, including protocol and conduct with televised meetings.


Councilmember Etten concurred, noting the intent for it to serve as an orientation for new commissioners: how to conduct business, the main items being worked on by the commission, and provided for by the chairperson and staff liaison.


Mayor Roe suggested training for specific commissions included open meeting laws, data privacy, etc.; and can be broad and cover those issues, but supported the addition of it as a new item "G" under organization.


Page 2, Section 201.04: Terms

Section B: Councilmember McGehee questioned the need for oaths; with Councilmember Laliberte responding that it was similar to those taken by the City Council.


Mayor Roe suggested adding to that section a statement, "and standards of conduct (not yet available.)"


City Attorney Gaughan cautioned that requirements could not be created that didn't yet exist.


Mayor Roe suggested referencing when and if something exists; with Councilmember Willmus expressing the preference to amend language at that time.


Page 2, Section 201.05: Compensation

Mayor Roe noted there were times when commissioners may purchase supplies and seek reimbursement, with language stating they would serve without compensation.


City Attorney Gaughan clarified this was reimbursement, not compensation.


Page 2, Section 201.07: Meetings and Reports

Section G: Councilmember Etten questioned if the expectation for subcommittees was to record their meetings to be articulated back to the larger commission.


Councilmember Willmus opined it would be beneficial if there was informal meeting notes at a minimum, to which Councilmember Laliberte agreed.


Mayor Roe noted that if the subcommittee reported to the full body their discussion, it would be recorded in the official commission meeting minutes.


Councilmember Etten sought to ensure those noted were discussed with the full body and televised.


City Manager Trudgeon suggested additional language to Section "201.06: Organization, Item C:" to the effect that subcommittees and/or task forces will report back to the full body by extension in meeting minutes."


Public Comment

Gary Grefenberg, 91 Mid Oaks Lane

Speaking on behalf of the CEC recommendations of 2014, Mr. Grefenberg noted that one missing item was requiring all commissions to provide for public comment.


Councilmember Laliberte and Mayor Roe referenced Section 201.07.F.


Mr. Grefenberg opined that it needed to be made clearer that it may not necessarily be related to generic public comment, but to a specific agenda issue.


Mayor Roe clarified Mr. Grefenberg's intent for having it as a standing item on each agenda similar to that of the City Council.


Councilmember Laliberte recognized the need for two different comment sections, one calling verbally for comment at the beginning of a meeting, and then for each item; but expressed her difficulty in wording that intent.


Mr. Grefenberg opined that "at the meeting" seemed ambiguous, but suggested language provided more clarification as long as it was assured that public comment on each agenda item would be heard prior to them taking action on it.


Discussion ensued regarding when and how to provide for this intent, with suggestions of individual councilmember.  At the conclusion, City Manager Trudgeon suggested the following language, supported by the body without opposition: "A commission must allow public comment for each agenda item and for a general time for public comment at the beginning of each meeting."


Regarding restructuring the HRC, Mr. Grefenberg referenced language related to civic engagement.


Mayor Roe, as he had mentioned earlier, noted the need to remove that language.


Mr. Grefenberg suggested removing language from the specific HRC chapter (page 2, D.3) under "Scope, Duties, Functions," which had been added during the time the HRC was responsible to advise the City Council on civic engagement.


Suggesting consensus of the body and expressing appreciation to Mr. Grefenberg for that point, Mayor Roe advised that, for the time being, language would remain as is as it also touched on broader things.


Mr. Grefenberg opined that much of what the City Council had accomplished was excellent, even though it was a long time coming.  Mr. Grefenberg supported the need for accountability for commissioners in attending meetings; and concluded by noting the CEC recommended adoption of this document soon.


Chapter 201 (Attachment B)

Councilmember Laliberte sought assurance from her colleagues of their understanding that the new section addresses "Scope, Duties, and Functions," and a way of operating as a general by-law for all commissions under which to operate, and would not provide separate by-laws for each group.


Councilmembers concurred with that statement.


Councilmember McGehee opined something was still needed to address conduct.


Councilmember Laliberte agreed, but admitted it was not yet available, and as noted by City Attorney Gaughan, the City Council could not adopt something not yet ready.


At the request of Mayor Roe, Councilmember McGehee agreed that she was willing to adopt this document, as revised, but wanted to ensure the other piece about conduct was not forgotten.


Public Comment

Gary Grefenberg

Mr. Grefenberg opined that the CEC oath of office didn't refer to the duties of a commission, but instead referred to the constitution; and suggested that standard oath needed revised.


Mayor Roe corrected that the oath said: "discharge the duties of the office of the" (e.g. CEC);" with Councilmember Laliberte and City Manager Trudgeon agreeing with that verbiage.


Individual Commission Chapters

Mayor Roe noted the need to correct each individual Chapter in reference to Chapter 201 to indicate "Chapter," rather than "Section" in all references throughout the individual Chapters.  Mayor Roe also suggested finding a better way to address  that initial reference would be in Section 202.01: Establishment and Membership: by adding language such as (e.g. Chapter 202 Planning Commission): "A City Planning Commission for the  City is hereby established, [which shall be subject to Chapter 201of this code ]" and then striking those redline areas from individual chapters.


Chapter 205 Human Rights Commission

Councilmember Etten questioned if "Section 205.01: Establishment and Membership" was the area to add language to appoint one new commissioner; with Mayor Roe responding that added specificity.


Councilmember Laliberte noted some commission language included appointment of youth commissioners, and asked if that specificity was desired across the board.


Mayor Roe noted that Chapter 201 talked about youth commissioners for all commissions.

Councilmember McGehee opined it was dependent on the interest of students.


Discussion ensued, with the consensus to strike the entire sentence referencing youth commissioners from Chapters 204 (Parks & Recreation), 205 (HRC), and 209 (CEC), as that language was addressed in Chapter 201, Section 03.B.


Mayor Roe noted that the language stated, "may," and therefore was not a mandate for the City Council to do so unless appropriate and applicable.


Based on the Council discussion, Mayor Roe directed staff to bring back another draft, and after discussion on the anticipated meeting to review that draft, consensus was for staff to have it available at the August 10, 2015 meeting.


e.            Twin Lakes Infrastructure TIF Bonding Discussion

As detailed in the RCA, City Manager Trudgeon noted mandatory timing until September 3, 2015 for the City to spend tax increment financing (TIF) dollars in Twin Lakes District 17 at which time any future expenditures will be significantly impacted, creating the need to spend funds by that date or lose the ability to use the majority of funds going forward.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that, if the City pursues the bonding process, the funds would qualify as spent.  Given the tight timeframe, Mr. Trudgeon noted staff's intent to bring this forward at the next meeting for City Council consideration for initiating the process of issuing bonds; and given the tight timeframe, it would be necessary to take action one way or another at that meeting to meet bond issue requirements.


As noted in the RCA, City Manager Trudgeon reviewed proposed projects, which had already been discussed by the City Council, and as identified on the displayed map, all of which had been identified as part of the original AUAR and involving existing conditions as well as future development, at an estimated total cost of $3.2 million.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that staff had been consulting with the City's financial consultant, Springsted, for the best possible scenario, and including the WalMart, vacant PIK and existing Dorso sites.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that the additional development of the new hotels, and pending developments would factor into and improve revenues over the life of the district, and were estimated at approximately $30,000 additional in increment over the conservatively sufficient dollars to fund the bond issue.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that staff is confident the bond is well within the reach of what the City can accomplish, and advised that it did not include development of the final plat to the south or the Sherman project should that proceed; and clarified that neither would impact TIF revenue.


City Manager Trudgeon offered to answer any questions of the City Council tonight, with the assistance of Public Works Director/Engineer Marc Culver, Community Development Director Paul Bilotta, and Finance Director Chris Miller, all in the audience if needed.  Mr. Trudgeon reiterated that City Council action would be required at the July 20, 2015 in order to start a bonding process under this tight deadline, and advised that representatives from Springsted would also be available at that meeting for any technical questions, in addition to Bond Counsel Mary Ippel, who has already initiated processing documents if and as needed.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Trudgeon reviewed rationale for this bond issue at this time under this particular TIF District created under legislation with a five year rule, and due to the recession, extended to ten years by the state legislature, expiring on September 3, 2015.  As previously stated, Mr. Trudgeon advised that if funds were not spent by that date, the City could only use 25% from increments in the district, creating a substantial hit.  Mr. Trudgeon noted discussions had been ongoing for some time among Councilmembers and staff about how best to invest these TIF dollars, avoid property assessments for new developments, and complete infrastructure needs in this area to facilitate development by having sites ready.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that the City would still be able to use funds from Hazardous TIF Districts to clean-up sites and make them ready for Greenfield development, further leveling the playing field as developers continue to come forward.  Mr. Trudgeon noted the limitations of the City in accomplishing these goals, and thus staff's recommendation to move forward and incent development by attracting developers and quality businesses to shovel ready properties.


At the request of Councilmember Etten, City Manager Trudgeon and Mr. Culver confirmed that the traffic light at Terrace Drive and Fairview Avenue was covered under the $2.2 million.


As brought to his attention by a resident, Councilmember Etten questioned why the City didn't bring a T-1 line down this corridor as part of infrastructure improvements and with the potential to attract a major technical company to hook in to City fiber optics, creating another unique and beneficial draw.


City Manager Trudgeon advised that this had been discussed in other areas of the community, and while providing incentives, it would also depend on how Twin Lakes develops.  At this point, Mr. Trudgeon advised that staff had not defined how that would work or the cost, but may lead to other conversations.


Councilmember Etten noted the line currently extends to Sand Castle Park, close to County Road D, and would serve as another way to separate Roseville from offerings in adjacent communities competing for development.


Mayor Roe cautioned the need to consider what was already available in the private market, referencing private data lines that may already be in place along County Road C.  Mayor Roe opined there may be serious policy considerations if the City attempted to compete with the private sector to provide that fiber optic service to businesses.


Public Works Director Culver confirmed Mayor Roe's statement.


Councilmember McGehee spoke in opposition to the proposed bond issue, opining it would not bring development, and noting that the Planned Unit Development (PUD) would define what type and quality of development, including business uses, especially if the City owned the land.  Councilmember McGehee noted the demonstrated history in this area that simply having a road available is not what the public wants, and therefore, is not a good use of public funds, nor would it bring development or enhance anything currently happening.  Councilmember McGehee further opined that the City's greatest advantage are the traffic generators along Cleveland Avenue and County Road D that keep things moving, and were proving not as onerous as originally thought.  Councilmember McGehee noted past experience based on the comments of Police Chief Mathwig, in the easier access is, the easier crime becomes when moving traffic into residential neighborhoods.  As stated at the beginning of the meeting, Councilmember McGehee noted the need to bring in decent jobs through enticing high quality development; and if the City has more control, it won't spend this money on a road.


At the request of Mayor Roe, seeking information regarding how much land the City could purchase with $3.17  million, City Manager Trudgeon responded that the cost of the last section purchased from PIK was $1 million; average square foot costs in the Twin Lakes Redevelopment Area were running between $10 and $12 per square foot; and Walmart had paid $20 per square foot for their roadway properties.


Mayor Roe referenced the displayed map and the small portion of land that could be purchased for the cost of this bond issue.


As a rhetorical question, Councilmember McGehee noted the City's ownership of 185,000 square feet of easement now that could be sold, and questioned if there was any reason the City couldn't or shouldn't bond for more than $3.1 million.


Mayor Roe clarified that amount, after analysis, was all that the TIF District would support based on current development.

Councilmember McGehee opined that, with the City's Port Authority ability, it could do the $3.1 million and partner to do additional work.


Mayor Roe concurred that the City could use Port Authority bonding at any time if they chose to do so.


At the request of Councilmember Willmus, City Attorney Gaughan advised that the City could not sell land purchased for rights-of-way or easement, and if not needed by the City chose not to hold it, it would revert back to the original property owner.  At the request of additional Councilmembers, Mr. Gaughan advised that property owners would not return any money to the City as the City did not have the right to sell the property as a third party; with the original property owner then getting the property back and retaining the original purchase money from the City.


City Manager Trudgeon noted that the federal government would also want their money returned that was used to purchase the last segment.


Councilmember McGehee opined it would make a nice pathway to the Langton Lake Park.


Mayor Roe confirmed with City Manager Trudgeon that requested action at the July 20, 2015 meeting would be to authorize a sale date for bond issuance.


At the request of Councilmember McGehee, City Manager Trudgeon reviewed the limitations for using bonds based on eligible expenditures, which could be answered in more detail at the July 20 meeting by Bond Counsel.


At the request of Mayor Roe, City Manager Trudgeon addressed specified bond purpose and a time clock for selling the bonds; and using this conservative proposal as presented, advised if there was further development in the area, it would



allow the City to pay off the bonds sooner or use funds for another purpose, depending on variables that may change over the bond term.


At the request of Mayor Roe regarding a time frame (e.g. 10 years) to spend the TIF funds, and decertification of the district as the other option, Community Development Director Bilotta advised that the District could continue, but the City would be limited to no more than 25%, and while it could continue gathering increment it would be without any benefit for the City.


Under that scenario, City Manager Trudgeon opined that staff would probably recommend decertifying the TIF District if a bond issue was not undertaken; with Mr. Bilotta noted any future projects would have to be recertified as new TIF districts, with not as much flexibility as legislated under this existing TIF District 17.


f.             Discussion of 2015 - 2017 Policy Priority Planning Document

Due to time constraints, this item was deferred to a future August 2015 meeting agenda.


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 9:59 p.m.


                                                Roll Call

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

Nays: None.