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City Council

City Council Meeting Minutes

Regular Meeting

January 12, 2009


1.         Call Roll

Mayor Klausing called to order the Roseville City Council regular meeting at approximately 6:00 pm and welcomed everyone; apologizing for the delay in starting due to weather-related delays in achieving a quorum.


(Voting and Seating Order for January: Roe; Johnson; Pust; Ihlan; and Klausing)


Present: Roe; Johnson; Ihlan; Klausing at 6:10 pm; with Councilmember Pust arriving at approximately 6:20 pm.  City Attorney Scott Anderson was also present.


2.         Approve Agenda

Councilmember Roe requested removal of Consent Agenda Item 7.e entitled, “Authorize Agreement with SFM for City’s Third Party Insurance Administration Liability Limits.”


The agenda was approved by consensus, as amended.


3.                 Public Comment

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


4.         Council Communications, Reports, Announcements and Housing and Redevelopment Authority Report

Councilmember Roe noted the availability of college scholarships available for students interested in communication areas through the North Suburban Cable Commission; with applications and additional information available through their offices and by contacting 651-792-7500 or at  Councilmember Roe indicated that the deadline for submitting applications was April 10, 2009. 


Councilmember Roe also announced the upcoming PEG Mania on February 20 and 21, 2009, providing one-half hour programming slots to highlight local events, issues or matters, and noted that it offered an excellent opportunity for the community, with filming assistance or expertise provided by Channel 15 staff and volunteers.  Councilmember Roe encouraged interested parties to use the above-referenced contacts to obtain additional information.


5.         Recognitions, Donations, Communications


            a.         Proclamation of Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Mayor Klausing read a proclamation recognizing and honoring the work of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.


Ihlan moved, Klausing seconded, proclamation of January 19, 2009 as Martin Luther King Jr. Day in the City of Roseville.


Mayor Klausing noted that City Hall would be closed on Monday, January 19, 2009, in recognition of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day; and that there would not be a City Council meeting scheduled that evening.


                                                            Roll Call

            Ayes: Roe; Johnson; Ihlan; Klausing.

            Nays: None.


6.         Approve Minutes


a.         Approve Minutes of January 5, 2009 Regular Meeting

Klausing moved, Johnson seconded, approval of the minutes of the January 5, 2009 Regular Meeting as presented.


                                                            Roll Call

            Ayes: Roe; Johnson; Ihlan; Klausing.

            Nays: None.


7.                 Approve Consent Agenda

There were no additional changes to the Consent Agenda than those previously noted.  At the request of Mayor Klausing, City Manager Bill Malinen briefly reviewed those items being considered under the Consent Agenda.


a.                 Approve Payments

Roe moved, Ihlan seconded, approval of the following claims and payments as presented.     

ACH Payments







                                                            Roll Call

            Ayes: Roe; Johnson; Ihlan; and Klausing.

            Nays: None.


b.                 Approve General Purchases or Sales of Surplus Items in Excess of $5,000

Roe moved, Ihlan seconded, approval of general purchases and/or contracts as follows:







Flanagan Sales, Inc.

Valley Park playground equipment



Flanagan Sales, Inc.

Central park Dale Street playground equipment (purchase offset by $44,000 donation from FORPARKS)









Roll Call

            Ayes: Roe; Johnson; Ihlan; and Klausing.

            Nays: None.


c.                  Authorize Filing of Pay Equity Report with DMB

Roe moved, Ihlan seconded, authorizing the Mayor to sign and staff to submit the required 2008 year-end pay equity report to the Minnesota Department of Management and Budget in St. Paul, MN  no later than January 31, 2009, in accordance with the Local Government Pay Equity Act (Minnesota Statute 471.991-471.999 and Minnesota Rules, Chapter 3920).


Roll Call

            Ayes: Roe; Johnson; Ihlan; and Klausing.

            Nays: None.


d.                 Authorize Staff to Negotiate a Contract for Operation of Clean Up Day

Roe moved, Ihlan seconded, authorizing staff to negotiate a contract with Waste Management for operation of the City’s Clean-Up Day, for the years 2009 – 2011.


                                                            Roll Call

            Ayes: Roe; Johnson; Ihlan; and Klausing.

            Nays: None.


f.                   Establish Public Hearing for Roundy’s Off-Sale Liquor License

Roe moved, Ihlan seconded, establishing January 26, 2009 to hold a public hearing to consider transferring an off-sale liquor license to Roundy’s (Rainbow Foods), at 1201 West Larpenteur Avenue.


Roll Call

            Ayes: Roe; Johnson; Ihlan; and Klausing.

            Nays: None.


g.                 Approve Not Waiving Statutory Liability Limits

Roe moved, Ihlan seconded, a motion to NOT waive the Statutory Liability Limits, as outlined in Minnesota Statute 466.04.


Roll Call

            Ayes: Roe; Johnson; Ihlan; and Klausing.

            Nays: None.


8.                 Consider Items Removed from Consent


a.                 Authorize Agreement with SFM for City’s Third Party Insurance Administration Liability Limits (Former Consent Agenda Item 7.e)

At the request of Mayor Klausing, City Manager Bill Malinen briefly reviewed this item.


Councilmember Roe questioned that, if the amount was estimated at $10,000 less than anticipated, had staff budgeted for the larger amount in anticipation of this bid.


Finance Director Chris Miller reviewed the make-up of this internal service fund, with the funds coming from and replenished throughout City department funds; and that it didn’t have a specific City Council-adopted mechanism to budget for this fund.


Councilmember Roe questioned if any surplus funds would eventually be returned to the City’s General Fund, and to a portion of property taxes.


Mr. Miller responded affirmatively; however, noted that there was no budget surplus, as the anticipated service cost would be higher than funds currently in place, but would have been higher if the City stayed with the current provider.


Councilmember Pust arrived at this time; approximately 6:20 p.m.


Roe moved, Johnson seconded, authorizing staff to enter into an agreement for services with SFM Risk Solutions to provide third-party administrator services for the City’s Workers Compensation Program, subject to review and approval by the City Attorney.

                                                            Roll Call

            Ayes: Roe; Johnson; Pust; Ihlan; Klausing.

            Nays: None.


9.                 General Ordinances for Adoption


10.             Presentations


11.             Public Hearings


12.             Business Items (Action Items)


a.                 Consider City Abatement at 648 Iona Lane

Permit Coordinator Don Munson reviewed the request of the Community Development Department staff to perform abatement for unresolved issues at 648 Iona Lane, as detailed in the request for Council action dated January 12, 2009.  Mr. Munson reviewed ongoing violations, and continuing complaints from adjacent property owners related to those code violations, specifically exterior building maintenance and exterior storage of building materials.  Mr. Munson advised that the property owners were Manzoor and Mahroof Moghul, residents at the property, and also in attendance at tonight’s meeting.


Mr. Munson provided updated pictures of the maintenance issues; and extensive siding and window work required beyond painting.  Mr. Munson advised that the property owners had completed re-roofing the property earlier in 2008, and had pulled a permit in August for replacement of the existing siding with vinyl; however, noted that they had not accomplished re-siding, and that staff continued to receive ongoing complaints from adjacent property owners.


Discussion between staff and Councilmembers including timing of this request given weather related constraints; the perceived intent of the property owner having pulled a Building Permit for re-siding, and their intent to complete the work in the spring of 2009; and the validity and time frame under the current Building Permit estimated through March of 2009 without making reapplication or seeking an extension.


Mr. Munson advised that it would take time for staff to pursue the abatement process; noted that communication efforts of the property owner to staff had not been evident; and sought a deadline from the City Council for the property owner to complete the work or authorize staff to pursue abatement.  Mr. Munson advised that masonite to vinyl siding replacement could be accomplished now, without painting until the weather warmed up.


Further discussion included the number of vehicles parked on the property, including on the grass, and whether that was a typical occurrence, with staff advising that they had received complaints; however, noting that this was not a violation that staff could pursue.


Manzoor and Mahroof Moghul

Habib Moghul, son of Mr. and Mrs. Moghul, spoke on behalf of the property owner and family, and addressed delays at the request of Mayor Klausing.


Habib advised that financial difficulties had prevented the family from completing the job, but wanted Councilmembers to know they had done the best they could with available monies by completing the roof, even though this project really hurt the family financially.  Mr. Habib advised that the family had contacted the Building Inspector every three weeks to let him know they were moving along.  Habib advised Councilmembers that they still intended to replace the windows and siding, but with the cold January weather and with children in the house, they didn’t want to begin a huge, expensive rehab at this time.  Habib told Councilmembers that the siding has been purchased and is in storage, and weather permitted, they intended to complete the rest of the project by June 30, 2009 at the latest. 


When asked by Mayor Klausing, Habib confirmed that the family planned to do the work themselves.


Mayor Klausing opined that June 30th seemed later than necessary, and told Habib that the Council was more than willing to work with property owners to resolve code violations and solve problems; but reminded him that ongoing code violations not only affected their property but that of their neighbors who also had legitimate concerns.


Habib advised Councilmembers that they had resided at this property for 15 years.


Councilmember Pust confirmed, and Habib confirmed, that the vinyl siding had already been purchased and was in storage.  Councilmember Pust then confirmed with Mr. Munson that, since the siding was already purchased, this should reduce the amount of the abatement estimate. 


Mr. Munson advised that the City typically would simply repair existing siding, not replace it.


Councilmember Pust asked Habib how many people lived in the home, and if it was typical to have as many vehicles parked there as indicated by staff’s pictures. Habib advised that it was a five bedroom house, and 15 people lived there, and with the exception of his uncle who had recently moved out-of-state, eliminating two vehicles, that this was typical.  Habib advised that there were typically eight vehicles parked there; and confirmed that when it snows, they do park on the grass, but move the vehicles back on the street after the snow plow had gone by.


Mayor Klausing confirmed with Mr. Munson that parking was not part of the abatement request.


Councilmember Ihlan reminded Councilmembers that there were no restrictions on street parking in the City of Roseville, except for recreational vehicles, and unless streets were otherwise marked; and opined that if they were making accommodations for parking off-street, there was nothing the City Council could do.


Mayor Klausing clarified that there were restrictions in the City for parking on grass. 


Councilmember Johnson asked Habib if the property owners could provide proof to the City that the siding had been purchased; with Habib offering to provide a picture of the siding or a receipt for the purchase.


Councilmember Roe asked Habib if the family was comfortable completing the siding project themselves in a professional-looking manner for the benefit of their property and other properties in the neighborhood.


Habib advised Councilmembers of the family’s willingness to work with the Inspections Division in completing the project; assuring Councilmembers that they had done similar projects in the past.


Mr. Munson advised Councilmembers that the Moghul family was in the siding business.


Councilmember Pust questioned how long the property owner anticipated it would take to complete the project from start to finish.


Habib estimated four to six weeks.  Habib advised that they were not contractors, but that they purchased property to rehab it themselves.  Habib noted that it was not their intention to let the property rehab take as long as it has; however, with their other work projects and responsibilities, and working seven days each week, he had been too tired to pay the parking situation much notice.  Habib stated that they could do a better job maintaining the property and intended to do so in the future.


Councilmember Ihlan suggested a completion date earlier than June 30th, but offered her willingness to compromise, while recognizing that these code violations and property maintenance issues had been ongoing for some time. 


Habib advised that, as soon as it got warmer, it was their intention to replace the siding and windows; and that the June 30, 2009 date would be their last resort for completing the project.



Habib’s unidentified uncle, and also an inhabitant of the home, stated that the family didn’t feel comfortable with what the Council was seeing in the pictures either, and assured Councilmembers that they didn’t want to just remove the damaged siding but replace it all, with trim and new windows, and to do so professionally.  Habib’s uncle promised Councilmembers to complete the work sooner than requested since the siding and most of the windows had been purchased, with some windows still on order.  Habib’s uncle stated that, as soon as it warms up, it would be their priority to get this project done, stating that, “we live in the community, and we want to be part of the solution, not part of the problem.”

Mr. Munson suggested that Councilmembers consider approving the abatement, directing that if the repairs were not completed by June 1, 2009, the process would move forward.


Pust moved, Johnson seconded, directing staff to abate public nuisance violation at 648 Iona Lane by hiring a general contractor to repair and repaint the exterior of the house and to remove and dispose of the outside storage, as detailed in the Request for Council Action dated January 12, 2009, at an estimated cost of approximately $10,000 - $15,000; and further directing that the property owner be billed for all actual and administrative costs; and if those charges remain unpaid, staff is to recover costs as specified in Minnesota Statute, Section 407.07B; with costs to be reported to the City Council following the abatement; said action amended to specify review by staff of substantial completion of the outstanding work by the property owner no later than May 15, 2009; as indicated by them at tonight’s meeting, prior to proceeding with the abatement.


Councilmember Pust expressed hope that staff would communicate with the City Council the progress of the project; with the ultimate goal to resolve code violations at this property. 


Mayor Klausing concurred, suggesting that the property owner take responsibility for keeping staff aware of their progress and intent, rather than waiting for staff to make contact.


Habib’s uncle thanked Councilmembers stating, “We won’t let you down.”


                                                            Roll Call

            Ayes: Roe; Johnson; Pust; Ihlan; and Klausing.

            Nays: None.


b.                 Authorize Ramsey County Citation – Albrecht’s, 1408 West County Road C

Permit Coordinator Don Munson reviewed the request of the Community Development Department staff to issue a Ramsey County Court Citation for unresolved violations of City Code at 1408 County Road C, as detailed in the request for Council action dated January 12, 2009.  Mr. Munson reviewed ongoing violations, and continuing complaints from adjacent residential property owners related to those code violations, with the subject property occupied by Albrecht Landscaping, and the current owner Mr. Dwayne Albrecht, residing at 2200 Boswell Avenue in St. Paul, MN, and also in attendance at tonight’s meeting.


Mr. Munson advised that many of these issues are in violation of the conditions for the property’s Special Use Permit (SUP) approved in 1976, with many complaints going back approximately 20 years.


Mr. Munson displayed an aerial photo of the property, and other photos taken from adjacent properties, indicating those concerns and code violations, causing neighbors to continue to express their discouragement with the situation adjoining their residential properties.  Pictures evidenced equipment and vehicles stored where nursery stock was supposed to be located and a buffer between properties, that was not in place; other pictures evidenced retaining wall materials being stored on site; dirt piled in front of the property rather than in the rear; and equipment parked on the front yard setback, and on railroad right-of-way, all in violation of the SUP. 


Mr. Munson advised that the Prosecuting Attorney was in agreement with staff in proceeding with a citation; and that the intent was to protect the integrity of area residential housing and the neighborhood and negative affects on adjoining property values due to overuse of this site.


Councilmember Ihlan clarified that the staff report had itemized City Code violations, both current and previous codes, as well as SUP violations; and asked whether a majority of those violations were applicable under current City Code, or any aspects that were only violations of the 1976 SUP.


Mr. Munson confirmed that the violations were subject to the original site plan as approved as part of the SUP approval; in violation of City Code for setbacks in effect in 1976, as referenced, as well as in violation of today’s standards.


Mr. Dwayne Albrecht, Property Owner

Mr. Albrecht stated that no one wants to face this.  He was young when he purchased the property and the City’s Planner, Mr. Dahlgren, drew up the plan on what we could and couldn’t do, and we went along with it.  Mr. Albrecht continued by advising that shortly thereafter, certain aspects of those uses were totally impractical, and with costs of land and taxes on that property, it became impractical to hold nursery stock there.  Mr. Albrecht advised that he had brought this issue to the City’s attention on numerous occasions to no avail.


Mr. Albrecht advised that two pieces of the equipment shown in staff’s picture were in the process of being picked up by John Deere, and other pieces had sales pending.  Mr. Albrecht alleged that he had planted screening vegetation on the buffer between his and neighboring residential properties; however, when the City did work on the easement a number of years ago, they had stripped that screening to accomplish that work, and not replaced it sufficiently.


Mr. Albrecht advised that, 18 years ago when the City was struggling with the Center Pointe project, he had put together a coalition of property owners to construct a senior citizen high rise building located on the other side of the pond from the tower, even paying a contractor to draw up plans.  Mr. Albrecht further advised that when he applied to the City for a Planned Unit Development (PUD) application, the City told them that they had other interests at the time.  Mr. Albrecht noted that in the meantime, Paul Carlson did upgrades to his adjacent commercial property, but the rest of the commercial properties remained unchanged, with some now vacant.  Mr. Albrecht advised that numerous real estate agents had originally expressed interest in the property until their clients realize the impracticalities of the properties for use.  Mr. Albrecht advised that his property taxes had increased 71% last year; and advised that until the City provided direction as to where to go with these commercial properties, he had no other options. 


Mr. Albrecht advised that his was a landscaping business, and recognized that the property was in default.  Mr. Albrecht continued to review those violations that had been resolved since this notice; noting that he had recycled 13 vehicles; that three others were gone; and that the fuel truck was being transferred to another site.  Mr. Albrecht advised that he was concerned about living in Roseville and that he attempted to keep the property well-maintained by mowing the font lawn, owned by the railroad, and by grubbing out trees when necessary.   Mr. Albrecht further advised that he had brought in recycling equipment, and they were 2/3 done with removing the soil piles at this time.  Mr. Albrecht assured Councilmembers that we don’t want to be bad neighbors; the situation is against us, but we don’t want to be bad neighbors.


Mayor Klausing clarified that the requested action from staff was related to a history of unresolved code violations, not Mr. Albrecht’s efforts to redevelop the property or his tax liability, while those were duly recognized by Councilmembers as stated by Mr. Albrecht.  Mayor Klausing, while sympathetic to Mr. Albrecht’s business constraints, advised Mr. Albrecht that staff was not in the business of doing private redevelopment, but was available to direct Mr. Albrecht to others who may be of assistance.  Mayor Klausing advised that, when campaigning door-to-door in 2003, he was hearing complaints from adjacent residential property owners regarding code violations, noting that they were still ongoing after six years; and that Mr. Albrecht had yet to address his failure to comply with City Code. 


Mr. Albrecht alleged that the pictures displayed by staff of the southwest corner of the property were misleading, and that much of what was there was actually 15’ from the property line, by his installation of hand-buried railroad ties to delineate the barrier; and that the reason for storage where it was located was his inability to function successfully as a nursery business, nor to use the rear 100 feet of the property.  Mr. Albrecht advised that he was open to options for use of the property; and noted that his lot and storage was more visible due to the recent trimming of trees by NSP Power.


Mr. Albrecht admitted that things had gotten out of control, due to his health problems over a three year period, and offered to remove additional items and clean up as much as possible.  Mr. Albrecht questioned if the barbed wire fence that was there when he purchased the lot, was to also be removed; and advised that the broken portion of the fencing had been caused from trees on a neighboring property, and that he had cut back debris from that neighboring property.


Mr. Munson advised that the fence was in disrepair; and that barbed wire fencing was not allowed under today’s code.


Mr. Albrecht advised that he had hauled out substantial trash; and that he has a new fence on site and ready for installation, but that he had run out of time.  Mr. Albrecht further requested that City Code be enforced uniformly throughout the City, opining that when he performs work on numerous properties throughout the City, he observed similar sites and violations.  Mr. Albrecht further opined that he wants this to be workable, and that these properties can’t support themselves with their current tax loads and limited land use options. 


Mr. Albrecht referenced a lease that he has from Burlington Northern Railroad from the purchase of the property  that dates back to 1977; and that it was transferred to the legal department of Transfer Railway, but was still in process with no update to property records.


Mayor Klausing suggested that Mr. Albrecht provide any relevant documentation, as well as any other pertinent information, to City staff and the Prosecuting Attorney to ensure due diligence of both parties.


Councilmember Johnson opined that, if Mr. Albrecht had been in business sine 1976, he must be doing something right, and thanked Mr. Albrecht for coming to tonight’s meeting and attempting to resolve these issues. Councilmember Johnson further opined that, since Mr. Albrecht’s business was seasonable, and with employees on staff with down time during the winter season, that perhaps those employees could use that down time and labor force in place to assist in cleaning up the property to bring it into compliance.  Councilmember Johnson opined that this surely would impact Mr. Albrecht’s business, his employee morale and work load, as well as furthering relationships with adjacent residential property owners. 


Mr. Albrecht cited several examples of his professional expertise and accomplishment of projects in specific time frames.


Councilmember Johnson noted that this was a good example of Mr. Albrecht doing what he did best.


Mr. Albrecht opined that he was pleased to know that he could change their use permit; alleging misrepresentation by staff of that ability and his confusion over the years  due to that issue.  Mr. Albrecht further opined that he had a lot of good people working for him, and he’d like to keep on working; and sought additional information on potential redevelopment uses in that area and along that strip of land.


Mayor Klausing again refocused discussion on the matter at hand with unresolved violations of City Code on the property, not future redevelopment potential.


Mr. Albrecht advised that he was willing to work with the City if they were willing to work with him.


Mr. Munson advised Councilmembers that the neighbors were very upset about the continuing violations, and impacts to their property values, and advised that they had threatened to sue the City if the City failed to take action to resolve those violations.


City Prosecuting Attorney Caroline Bell Beckman

Ms. Beckman advised that such Court Citation would be considered a misdemeanor, and if unresolved, could be punishable with a $1,000 fine or 90 days in jail.  Ms. Beckman advised that Ramsey County judges usually look to a plea agreement allowing for reasonable time for property compliance; or community service or a fine, or some combination of both if there is no follow-through, given consideration of weather issues.  Ms. Beckman expressed optimism in Mr. Albrecht’s apparent willingness to work with City staff  in achieving resolution.


Pust moved, Johnson seconded, directing staff and the City’s Prosecuting Attorney to issue a Ramsey County Court Citation to Mr. Albrecht for public nuisance violations, and violations of the Special Use Permit, at 1408 County Road C, as detailed in the Request for Council Action dated January 12, 2009; amended


Councilmember Ihlan spoke in support of enforcing City Code; however suggested a review of conditions of the SUP that the property owner indicated were not workable or conducive to his business.  Councilmember Ihlan concurred that City Code should be uniformly enforced.  Councilmember Ihlan suggested that the requested action seek citations on code violations and leave aside the SUP.


Councilmember Pust clarified her motion, opining that staff and the Prosecuting Attorney would determine which grounds were legally sufficient, and determine those items on the SUP that were applicable, rather than the City Council dictating those items.


Community Development Director Patrick Trudgeon advised that staff was willing to work with Mr. Albrecht on land use modifications, as had been offered for several years by staff, and clearly documented in his most recent correspondence to Mr. Albrecht; and encouraged Mr. Albrecht to contact his office.


Mayor Klausing opined that staff and the City Council were not unreasonable and were more than willing to work with property owners, but noted that they were also held accountable by their citizens to enforce land use applications, and expect compliance.  Mayor Klausing further opined that Mr. Albrecht’s arguments were not particularly persuasive years after the agreement was made, and advised Mr. Albrecht that if it was evident to him that there were problems in executing the SUP, it was the property owner’s obligation to talk to staff accordingly.  Mayor Klausing spoke in support of the motion, concurring with the original language as proposed by Councilmember Pust.


Councilmember Ihlan noted the proposed land use designations in the draft 2030 Comprehensive Plan; and indicated that the area in questions was designated High Density Residential, and that redevelopment could occur on that property in the future depending on market conditions.


Mr. Albrecht noted constraints on the property due to the power lines.


                                                Roll Call

            Ayes: Roe; Johnson; Pust; Ihlan; and Klausing.

            Nays: None.


Councilmember Pust thanked Mr. Trudgeon for sending the letter to Mr. Albrecht; thanked those citizens who’ve complained patiently over the years; and expressed appreciation that the matter had been brought forward for resolution.  Councilmember Pust strongly suggested that, if there were other ongoing compliance issues, that staff present them to the City Council for resolution as well.


c.                  Authorize Lease Renewal for the License Center

Mr. Miller summarized the Request for Council Action dated January 12, 2009, and staff’s recommendations that the City Council authorize approval of a four year lease extension with the Lexington Shopping Center for operating the City’s License Center.  Mr. Miller reviewed the proximity of this location to City Hall providing for effective management and continuity; good visibility of the site; and delayed consideration of previous discussions about another location or potential build-out of another facility by the City under current financial constraints.


Discussion included short- and long-term revenue generation and volume of business based on trends, competing license centers, and the economy; the need for high-levels of customer service; and the need for this service to continue generating surplus revenues for the City.


Further discussion included freezing the 2009 lease rate and subsequent annual percentages, and the total percentage; and whether further negotiations were indicated.


Mr. Miller advised that staff placed significant emphasis on freezing lease rates for 2009, making the 2010 percentage increase larger; however, he advised Councilmembers that staff and the property owner had a good relationship, and he thought further negotiations were possible.


Councilmember Pust spoke in support of the location of the License Center; however, advised that she was not going to support the lease extension with the terms outlined in the staff report, noting that the landlord was also experiencing the economic issues and would need to fill that space as well, if the City were to relocate, and asked that this be factored into his good faith negotiations with the City.  Councilmember Pust noted that average commercial rates for leases under current economic times were more in the line of three percent rather than five percent.


Councilmember Roe echoed similar concerns, in addition to his concern of being able to get out of the lease, since a new license center is addressed in the City’s Capital Improvement Plan.  Councilmember Roe questioned whether the CIP was a long- or short-term projection, and whether a lease renewable on an annual benefit was more beneficial.


Mr. Miller advised that the four year lease term allowed the City to pursue other options in finding a permanent home.  Mr. Miller noted that staff had been recommending, as outlined in the CIP presented in mid-2008, relocating or building a facility to house multiple City services; however, with what has transpired over the last six months with the economy, staff advised that it was not prudent to build a stand-alone license center, and that other uses needed to be re-evaluated, but didn’t appear viable in the near future.


Councilmember Ihlan questioned the staggered increases, annual averaging, and how it compared to previous leases.


Mr. Miller advised that the terms were comparable, however, noted that they were higher than the terms when the original lease was entered into in 1999, based on different circumstances.  Mr. Miller noted that the shopping center was struggling at that time, and the City was anxious to relocate from their existing site, allowing for a fair amount of leverage.  Mr. Miller reiterated that staff was comfortable going back to the landlord to discuss City Council concerns, potential for a shorter term, and more favorable rate increases.


Public Comment

John Kysylyczyn, 3083 N Victoria Street

Mr. Kysylyczyn provided a history of the site; and opined that the City relocating the License Center to that site had proven beneficial and increased traffic for the landlord.   


Pust moved, Roe seconded, NOT authorizing staff to approve a four-year lease extension between the City of Roseville and the owners of the Lexington Shopping Center for purposes of operating the City’s License Center, as detailed in the Request for Council Action dated January 12, 2009; and to return to the landlord for more negotiations.

                                                            Roll Call

            Ayes: Roe; Johnson; Pust; Ihlan; and Klausing.

            Nays: None.


d.                 Consider Grass Lake Water Management Organization Board Appointment

A brief discussion was lead between the City Council and Public Works Director Duane Schwartz regarding the recently-advertized vacancy for the Grass Lake Watershed Management Organization (GLWMO) and the subsequent receipt of two applications, as detailed in the Request for Council Action dated January 12, 2009.


Discussion included the applicants and their specific interest and expertise; provisions of the resolutions related to advisory commission appointments; and interest in initiating new applicants for service in their community.


Pust moved, Johnson seconded, appointment of DANIEL KELSEY to the Grass Lake Watershed Management Organization Board for a term to expire on December 31, 2009.

                                                            Roll Call

            Ayes: Roe; Johnson; Pust; Ihlan; and Klausing.

            Nays: None.


13.             Business Items – Presentations/Discussions


a.                 Discuss Professional Services Policy

City Manager Malinen briefly discussed the Request for Council Action dated January 12, 2009 as initiated by the request of Councilmember Johnson for discussion of the policy and the effect on current legal services agreements. 


Councilmember Johnson indicated that his rationale for this discussion was the six year sunset provision that could prohibit us from providing a best case scenario for the public; and opined that he would also like an annual review built into the policy to facilitate ongoing dialogue on performance.


          Mayor Klausing clarified that there were two different and potential motions or actions for the City Council to consider.


Public Comment

          John Kysylyczyn, 3083 N Victoria Street

Mr. Kysylyczyn questioned the future bid process; negotiating lower rates with current providers; and, commented on the professional services policy.


Councilmember Ihlan opined, on the issue of whether to extend the existing legal services contracts, she was under the impression that the City Council continued in the middle of that discussion of proposals from the end of last year, with the Council having requested additional information from staff related to the City Manager’s recommendation.  Councilmember Ihlan questioned if this item had been noticed as a future discussion item for tonight’s agenda; and offered her willingness to have further discussions on the policy itself, but not taking action on appointment of a new City Attorney and/or Prosecuting Attorney at tonight’s meeting.


City Manager Malinen advised that staff was not in receipt of any letter of resignation from the City’s incumbent legal firms at this time; and was confident that cost savings could be negotiated with either or both of those firms following City Council ratification of his recommendation to retain the incumbents.


City Manager Malinen advised that he had suggested a process for annual review of legal services in previous discussions, and suggested incorporating that into policy revisions.


City Manager Malinen advised that staff had put together the Request for Council Action based on Councilmember Johnson’s discussion requests and staff’s perceived intent of those discussion points.


Councilmember Pust advised that she was cognizant of two different issues: that of extending legal service contracts for a year, recognizing some advantages in reviewing the current RFP process that provided only four bidders; and another issue in a broader review of the exiting policy.  Councilmember Pust opined that she had concerns in making a decision on the two incumbent service providers without allowing the other bidders similar opportunities.  Councilmember Pust recognized that both incumbent firms, when asked, had offered to keep their rates level for 2009; and suggested that the other providers needed to be provided fair consideration as well. 


Councilmember Pust advised that she had consistently noted that there was no reason for language that incumbent firms couldn’t rebid after six years; acknowledged that the overall policy may need review and revision; and noted that the City Council was always obligated to get the best deal for the City in any situations, even if that indicated retaining the same provider.  Councilmember Pust suggested several changes to the existing policy, including striking language stating that only designated City staff could be contacted; and striking language regarding submitting RFP’s if firms had already served the City for six years.


Councilmember Roe acknowledged those revisions, and noted that he had several others as well if that was part of tonight’s discussion.  Councilmember Roe questioned the contract period and/or annual fiscal review; noted that the current policy applied to a whole range of professional service contracts, and care needed to be given that those be considered in the discussion; and that the current policy had numerous inconsistencies that needed to be addressed.


Councilmember Roe spoke in support of a best value for legal services, based on review and performance criteria versus achievement, and suggested that the discussion include: 1) What purpose are we trying to achieve, and  2) How to implement those purposes.


Councilmember Johnson noted the need to review language proposed to be stricken under the purpose statement to provide for an annual review of professional services.


Further discussion included terms of current legal contracts having expired at the end of 2008; and fairness to all firms having bid.


Mayor Klausing opined that negotiating with current providers on a one year extension was appropriate.


Councilmember Ihlan, on the issue of extending contracts, opined that it was completely inappropriate to take that action tonight without additional information available and further review of the other proposals.


Councilmember Ihlan, on the issue of policy, noted that the Council had repeatedly stated their desire to achieve the best deal for the City; and opined that to do so required vigorous competition in the open market.  Councilmember Ihlan questioned perceptions in the legal community and reasons for so few bids being received for legal services, or not wanting to bid against incumbents due to perceptions of entrenched relationships or insider arrangements and politicized decisions.  Councilmember Ihlan further opined that by opening bids for other firms, and limiting years of service, it allowed for market competition and ensured public confidence through a competitive, open market system, and provided fresh perspectives.  Councilmember Ihlan spoke in support of revised policy language that incumbents could rebid after a one year hiatus.


Councilmember Pust advised that she could support a one year extension with current legal providers, if she were assured that the process was fair to other bidders; thus her recommendation that action not be taken at tonight’s meeting to allow all bidders equal opportunity, but recognizing that the best deal for the City is not always based on price, but also quality and expertise of the services provided.  Councilmember Pust shared concerns that enough providers were not bidding, suggesting that this indicated the current process and policy needed to be reviewed; however, she also recognized that government clients were served by a subset of attorneys willing to do this less profitable work.


Mayor Klausing suggested that the Council extend current legal services for one  year, allowing additional time for review of the existing policy language and further discussions during that time.  Mayor Klausing opined that Councilmembers had received the packet materials allowing for sufficient review time of this agenda item, and allowing them to make an informed decision.


Councilmember Pust reiterated her opinion that the City was bound by statutorily-defined competitive bidding, allowing the same opportunity for all bidders; and questioned if the City was opening themselves up for process arguments from other bidders by extending the incumbents’ contracts at tonight’s meeting.


Mayor Klausing agreed to disagree, opining that this was not the case for the lowest bidder, but acting on the City Manager’s recommendation.


Councilmember Roe opined the need for a less arbitrary way to achieve the objectives beyond the original policy language and six year limitation.  Councilmember Roe noted that the City had the right to reject all bids; extend the current contracts for a year; and start from scratch going forward following further policy discussion.


          Klausing moved, Roe seconded, rejecting all bids for City Civil Attorney and Prosecuting Attorney services; and extension of current incumbent services for an additional one year period through 2009 at the same terms as those provided in 2008.


          Councilmember Ihlan requested that the City Council have access to all proposals before considering such action; opining that this would determine how she would argue the motion.


City Manager Malinen provided copies of the original proposals and related materials for Councilmember Ihlan’s review.


Mayor Klausing recessed the meeting at 8:21 p.m. and reconvened at 8:34 p.m.


          Councilmember Ihlan, following her review of the proposals, spoke against the motion; and for the record, provided her summary of each firm’s bid, and her perception of the performance of the incumbents.  Councilmember Ihlan opined that the City Council had not given careful consideration to opportunities to save money, even with the current economic and budgetary concerns, and needed to seriously consider such savings in the competitive marketplace.  Councilmember  Ihlan further opined her concerns with performance of the attorney firms, specifically the Civil attorney, and more specifically to their advice on various Twin Lakes redevelopment issues, and subsequent court decisions contrary to that advice.  Councilmember Ihlan opined that, by the City being sued by their own residents on Twin Lakes issues, as well as the Acorn Road situation, with the Court deciding in favor of the residents, it indicated that the City Council was not doing their jobs, nor that their civil attorney was providing prudent and accurate legal advice.  Councilmember Ihlan noted that the Council majority, exclusive of her lack of support, had concurred with that legal advice to the detriment of the community itself; in addition to subsequent majority agreement for financial settlements, costing the City’s taxpayers additional monies.


          Councilmember Ihlan spoke in opposition to any motion to extend contracts, specific to the City’s civil attorney, opining that it did not serve the public or City’s interest to extend this contract.


          City Manager Malinen briefly reviewed the process for City ratification of the City Manager’s recommendations for legal services; and spoke in support of the City Council’s action extending the contract, based on the process to-date, and allowing for reconsideration and revision of the current policy.  City Manager Malinen opined that, from staff’s perspective and review of proposals, they were satisfied with the incumbent firms.  City Manager Malinen further opined that, while lawsuits and appeals were not something anyone wanted to go through, at the end of the day, everyone from a staff perspective felt comfortable with the level of services received by the City.


            Following further City Council discussion, and confirming receipt of applicable waivers from each firm to discuss data deemed private under the Data Practices Act, it was majority City Council consensus that all bids received, in their entirety, be made part of these minutes for public review and information.


          Further discussion included costs quoted and/or reduced for 2009; quality analysis of existing bids; and analysis of performance included in the process.


          Mayor Klausing spoke in support of the motion; opining that the legal advice provided to a client doesn’t guarantee final results; and performance of the City’s civil attorney was not determined by a standard that their advice was always upheld 100% by the court system. 


          Mayor Klausing reiterated past observations among Councilmembers that each individual did indeed take their jobs and the best interest of the community into consideration with each of their decisions, but that it was unrealistic that each member be in total agreement with all decisions.  Mayor Klausing reiterated that if a Councilmember reached a different conclusion than their colleagues, that didn’t mean they took their responsibility less seriously.


          Councilmember Pust advised that her analysis would have lead to her support of the incumbent firms; however, noted that she would be voting against the motion, due to her concerns regarding the process itself.


                                                            Roll Call

            Ayes: Roe; Johnson; and Klausing.

            Nays: Ihlan and Pust.

Motion carried.



b.                 Discuss Advisory Commission Appointments

City Manager Malinen provided as a bench handout, a list of Advisory Commission terms, expirations, and their individual eligibility for reappointment.


          Staff sought direction from the City Council related to appointment, reappointment and/or interviewing, and the process itself, as detailed in the Request for Council Action dated January 12, 2009.


          Councilmember Pust expressed her interest in interviewing all Human Rights Commission candidates, including incumbents, to determine their interest in reshaping their focus on neighborhoods and welcoming functions.


          Mayor Klausing concurred.


          Councilmember Roe noted that the only Commission without a vacancy was the Ethics Commission, and opined that, based on previous interviews with those individuals or his personal knowledge of each, he saw no need to re-interview them.  Councilmember Roe suggested authorizing staff to advertise for vacancies; and proceed with reappointment of Ethics Commission candidates.


          Councilmember Ihlan opined that she was not comfortable singling out one Commission, speaking in support of interviewing all candidates across the board, allowing those wishing the opportunity to be interviewed that opportunity.  Councilmember Ihlan further opined that there was no need to interview incumbents; but that those reappointments should be done at the same time as other vacancies.


          Mayor Klausing noted that, under the City’s resolution regarding appointments, Section II.a, that if two Councilmembers wanted to schedule interviews, the procedure under that policy indicated that interviews be scheduled.


          Councilmember Johnson admitted that he didn’t know a number of those eligible for reappointment, and opined that he wouldn’t mind an opportunity, via interview, to get to know them better; however, he advised he was amenable to the Council majority’s wishes.


          Council consensus was to interview all new applicants and candidates eligible for reappointment; but to schedule interviews for two separate meetings based on time constraints. 


          Councilmember Pust noted the typographical correction for “Mary,” rather than “Mark” Bakeman on the Planning Commission.


          Roe moved, Pust seconded, authorizing staff to advertise for open City Commission positions with an application deadline of February 27, 2009 at 4:30 p.m., and to schedule interviews on March 9, 2009 and/or additional dates as necessary, inclusive of all commission members eligible for reappointment


                                                            Roll Call

            Ayes: Roe; Johnson; Pust; Ihlan; and Klausing.

Nays: None.


14.             City Manager Future Agenda Review

City Manager Malinen briefly reviewed upcoming agendas; and discussion was held on the logistics for the proposed and upcoming Special Meeting for Strategic Planning, anticipating Saturday, January 24, or Saturday, February 7, 2009 as potential dates.  City Manager Malinen advised that he was preparing several options for facilitation and discussion content for the January 26, 2009 meeting agenda.


Councilmember Pust advised that she may have a potential conflict on January 24, 2009.


Limited discussion was held as to the preference for holding the meeting during the week, rather than on a Saturday, with no clear consensus.


15.             Councilmember-Initiated Items for Future Meetings

a.       Mayor Klausing reminded Councilmembers that he had been charged with coordinating the City Manager’s annual performance review process; and was working with staff setting up survey questions to facilitate the review, using questions from the past review.  Mayor Klausing advised that he would have a suggested pool of people from whom to solicit comments, and the proposed process to follow as an action item on the next Council agenda, to keep current on the performance review schedule.


13.      Adjourn

          The meeting was adjourned at 9:07 pm.