December 22, 2014 Summary

MARION CITY COUNCIL MEETING

 

 

City Hall – Council Chambers on December 22, 2014, 7:30 PM

ROLL CALL – 10 members answered – Mr. Cumston, Mr. Ratliff, Mr. Thomas, Mrs. Blevins, Mr. Smith, Mr. Osborn, Mr. Crider, Mr. Daniels, Mrs. Gustin, Mr. Edwards. 

 

PRAYER LED BY PASTOR TOM TONEY OF FAMILY LIFE CHURCH

 

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

 

Summary of Proceedings from December 8, 2014; Mr. Cumston moved, Mrs. Gustin  2nd. Roll Call: Ayes all, motion carried, Summary of Proceedings is accepted.

 

Mr. Cumston: 4 Items need to be added: Resolutions 2014-25 and 26 and Ordinances 2014-80 and 81. Mr. Thomas 2nd; Mr. Crider 3rd.

 

OLD BUSINESS:

RESOLUTION 2014-24:

RESOLUTION CONFIRMING THE RE-APPOINTMENT, BY THE MAYOR, OF ANGELA YAZEL TO SERVE AS MEMBER OF THE MARION COUNTY GENERAL HEALTH DISTRICT

            Mayor Schertzer said a packet of information was provided to all. We ask for your consideration again tonight. Mr. Thomas said we’d like a second reading tonight, we asked Ms. Yazel to be here, but she had a conflict, we’ll have the clerk call her and ask her to be here for January 12 meeting.  RESOLUTION 2014-24 HAS HAD ITS 2ND READING

 

ORDINANCE 2014-18:

ORDINANCE TO VACATE A CERTAIN 12’ WIDE NORTH/SOUTH ALLEY BETWEEN LOTS 2111 AND 2112; AN “L” SHAPED 16’ WIDE NORTH/SOUTH ALLEY BETWEEN LOTS 2093 AND 5355 AND 12’ WIDE EAST/WEST ALLEY NORTH OF LOT 5355; AND MONROE STREET ROAD SEGMENT BETWEEN LOTS 2111 AND 2093 PURSUANT TO ORC 723.041 RETAINING PERMANENT EASEMENT RIGHTS AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY (Applicant, Nachurs Alpine Solutions Corp.)

            Mr. Thomas said this came out of Streets & Sewers with a 3-0 recommendation for approval, we will ask for a 2nd  hearing tonight, with a public hearing on January 12, 2015.  ORDINANCE 2014-18 HAS RECEIVED ITS 2nd READING

 

ORDINANCE 2014-19:

ORDINANCE AMENDING THE ZONING MAP OF THE CITY OF MARION, BY REZONING Lots 2112, 2111, 2093 AND 5355 FROM AN R-2 (RESIDENTIAL DISTRICT) TO AN I-1 LIMITED INDUSTRIAL DISTRICT   (Applicant, Nachurs Alpine Solutions Corp) 

            Mr. Smith said this came out of Zoning & Annexation with a 3-0 recommendation for approval, we will ask for a 2nd hearing tonight, with a public hearing on January 12, 2015. ORDINANCE 2014-19 HAS RECEIVED ITS 2nd  READING

 

ORDINANCE 2014-77:

ORDINANCE amending marion city code CHAPTER 1381 “DEMOLITION OF STRUCTURES” TO PROVIDE FOR NECESSARY UPDATES AND TO REQUIRE A PERFORMANCE GUARANTEE FOR CERTAIN STRUCTURES IN EXCESS OF 7500 SQUARE FEET, as amended

            Mr. Daniels said this came out of Legislation & Codes with a 2-0 recommendation for approval to send onto Council; this is the third reading, I move to approve; Mr. Thomas 2nd. Roll call: Ayes all, motion carried.  ORDINANCE 2014-77 IS ADOPTED

 

ORDINANCE 2014-78:

ORDINANCE amending marion city code CHAPTER 915.17 IN ORDER TO AMEND THE DEBT SERVICE CHARGES MORE EQUITABLE AND TO CARRY OUT THE INTENT OF DEVELOPING A RATE STRUCTURE TO REPAY STORM WATER UTILITY DEBT SERVICE OBLIGATIONS

            Mr. Thomas said this came out of Streets & Sewers with a 3-0 recommendation for approval, we’ll ask for a 2nd reading.

            Mr. Daniels said the language “more equitable” – is there a legislative change that does it make more equitable. Mr. Russell said that’s the same language that was utilized in 2004 when the same structure was put in the place with the sanitary sewer. Council used that terminology back then in 2004.  Mr. Daniels said rate increase – it makes it more equitable, it misrepresents the ordinance. The debt obligation is outweighing the money we are bringing in. Mr. Thomas said take out the word equitable, is says “fair and equitable” down below. If you look at the 2nd whereas it’s stated that way. Mr. Osborn said this amendment said this is to be determined what the rate will be – reviewed on an annual basis. More equitable, I can see Josh’s language there. What we are trying to do is just review. Mr. Crider said remove the language “more equitable”. Mr. Daniels said further – right now we don’t create debt that we are unable to pay, right?

            Auditor Carr said we are at the point to bring this to you. Bonds are like your mortgage payment, interest and payment every year. In notes, when borrowed dollars are in note format, only pay the interest every year. Moving forward with projects, EPA happenings, move those things, the fund is going to have a shift, and we won’t be able to meet it. What’s the price? The debt structure, what do we have to do, is there an ER we have to look at money to cover the situation. Look at outstanding projects from 2010, we have 10 years. In 10 years some of those payments will be coming off, we try to keep things maturing and adding, to keep that cost as fair without going crazy. We try to watch what is rolling off to help us make that determination. We are not out just to increase. We have it note format, but when we are ready, the fund is ready; we have to keep it in structure change. We are not there yet, but we are hoping we won’t get there.

            Mr. Daniels said how is the rate determined now? Auditor Carr said it has never changed from 1997. We need to evaluate this every single year, so we don’t end up with problems. The Sanitary Sewer is looked at every year. Mayor Schertzer said I agree with everything that Auditor Carr said. This does not mean the rates go up. The sanitary sewer did not go up this year. We are still bringing in enough revenue to cover the debt. We are preparing for the future for this situation. I don’t know if it has been evaluated since 1997. We are just asking you to evaluate it on a yearly basis. It’s just not in the City of Marion, it’s across Ohio.

            Mr. Daniels said give us an idea of what the rate will be, it feels like a blank check. Auditor Carr said you really do approve it by approving the dollars. You do have a hand in that. You are acknowledging it. Mayor Schertzer said this is a process to have a debt payment plan to move forward, we don’t know what exactly what it would be yet. The process for you to consider is the same process that has been implemented with the sanitary sewer. We would do the same thing here in the storm water. We are asking for the debt to be reviewed every year. Mrs. Gustin asked about giving us an estimate when you come to us for borrowing monies.

Auditor Carr said there is a formula that is used. Debt service will always be #1. Bonds and Notes are GO Bonds. There was a structure put in place in 97 to meet the EPA compliance, to make it so to pay back, not being a burden on the GF, but, right now if I have come in front of you, asking for an advance from the GF to cover the debt, Debt has to be met.

            Mr. Ratliff said when we have the Bond or Notes, we don’t know what interest rate we’d be paying, or when it’s going to roll, however, we haven’t looked at it since 97, there has to have been some analysis done. I would assume that. Mayor Schertzer said the sewer projects that are projected for next year. We are in the process of selecting Eng. Design firms. We’ll have a better idea for those 4 or 5 sewer projects. Mr. Thomas said if you look at the proposed budget, I received some information from the Auditor today 507 department, it shows what the ERU is. We’ve collected about million 9 for operations,140,000/year from delinquent accounts. That’s the revenue side. 2013 we had a carry-over of 1.6 million.  Paid out about 900,000 in bonding and notes. It left us right now about 45.00. We have a carryover right now of about 40,000 for next year. 140,000 on the delinquent taxes and add the 40,000 carryover, we have about 180,000 in the fund. Mrs. Carr said with a million dollar debt payment due next year and operation costs. Mr. Thomas said we make an obligation to borrow money; we have to make an obligation to pay it back. Auditor Carr said we are just looking to avoid borrowing from the GF. Mr. Osborn said this is no different from any other Enterprise Fund we have. You have to charge the rate when you provide the service. Every 8 years, we haven’t looked at the ERU rate. This is something that needs to be done. We only had 55,000/year to spend on Storm Sewers, back in 97. This was great when it was established; we created a “Master Plan”. That master plan dedicated that 4.16. It was something to be regulated on a regular basis; I’m in favor of this. The operation side comes back to Council, but the debt doesn’t. Anticipate what we are going to spend each year. Everyone charge the same %. Utility Companies say we are going to charge you a certain percentage. Auditor Carr said when we are in notes, we get lower rates, and it stays pretty steady. When we get into Bonds, it’s a little bit higher. I don’t have an opinion one way or another of how you handle this, but as your financial advisor for the City, something has to be done.

            Mr. Cumston said we shop for the best rate, getting an estimate sounds good, you really can’t get a good idea with that rate changing. Moody’s recommendation said this was a good way to set this up. 97 was the second 10 year phase with no increases, massive amount of projects, we have plenty of projects to be done still. I wanted to give everyone history on that. What we spend is very important to our citizens. 10 years from now we can suffer horrific debt. We’ve always been forward thinking for this City. The Sewer collapse @ the railroad, the blown out sewers - if you hamper this fund with no money in there, we are setting ourselves up for failure. It’s a big process. It’s more than meets the eye on this Ordinance.

            Mr. Ratliff said signing a blank check that is my fear also. Decrease was never said ever. There are 10 people here that are supposed to be responsive to the community. The Service Director to calculate the debt service, but is not fundamentally responsible for the people that voted for us.

            Mayor Schertzer said I understand everything you just said. There are a lot of things we must do before an increase is issued. The sanitary sewer was unchanged for 2014. As we do all these projects, I had to tell you we might have a decrease in some time, if the EPA gets off the municipalities, if the debt service is paid back, we still have to rebuild 100 year old service. This is a system to pay off the debt. We have to raise it enough to pay off the debt we already have. Mr. Daniels asked about the RR job, how much was it and who did it. Roger Baldinger said it was around 40,000.00 and Park Enterprise did the job.

            Mr. Daniels said bring an estimate of what the increase will be. What’s that going to do to the consumer’s bill? That will be concrete for me to make a decision. I would be included to vote no, if that isn’t said.

            Mr. Sulu Kelley said the Master Plan – 4.16 originally – change to master plan – that should be reviewed as well. Mr. Shoup said from 97 to 2014 there have been significant change on how things are approached. Early 2000’s storm water phase II study by the EPA. We had to comply with that. That came out of the storm water utility fund. About 3 years ago, we had come to the realization that the EPA considers our system combined. Like it or not. The original Master Plan has to be updated, but it may not be valid anymore. Mr. Kelley said create a new one. Mr. Shoup said a non-feasible study; we will initially start the first series in January 8, the first meeting. We had meetings all over town. We’ll have a new plan eventually. There are a lot of reasons to visit this now. It’s a new era where our sources come from a pipe network. We build over in Franconia, and it ends up in Silver hollow, which is a combined sewer. That’s what EPA is talking about. It will be a big program with lots of money involved in it. What we want to do is: A. Cost effective manner and B. make sure our approach is what we need to do, and not what regulators would force us into a not-needed action. Mr. Kelley said we should wait for a new master plan. Mr. Shoup said the discussion today is germane to the issues.  ORDINANCE 2014-78 HAS HAD ITS 2ND READING

 

ORDINANCE 2015-01

ORDINANCE TO MAKE APPROPRIATIONS FOR CURRENT EXPENSES AND OTHER EXPENDITURES OF THE CITY OF MARION, STATE OF OHIO, DURING THE FISCAL YEAR ENDING DECEMBER 31, 2015

            Mr. Cumston noted that this came out of Finance with a 3-0 recommendation for approval, motion to adopt, Mr. Osborn 2nd. Roll call: Ayes all, motion carried. ORDINANCE 2015-01 IS ADOPTED

 

NEW BUSINESS:

 

RESOLUTION 2014-27

RESOLUTION CONFIRMING THE RE-APPOINTMENT, BY THE MAYOR, OF JON D. FERGUSON AS A MEMBER OF THE MARION CITY DESIGN REVIEW BOARD AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY

            Mayor Schertzer spoke: This is Jon’s second round on the Design Review Board. He works at Fahey Bank. They don’t meet on a regular basis, only on as-needed basis. Mr. Osborn moved to suspend, Mr. Cumston 2nd.  Roll call: Ayes all, motion carried. Mr. Cumston moved to adopt, Mr. Smith 2nd. Roll call: Ayes all, motion carried. RESOLUTION 2014-27 IS ADOPTED

 

RESOLUTION 2014-25

RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE CITY AUDITOR TO MAKE A CASH ADVANCE OF UP TO $20,000.00 TO THE FEDERAL FIRE GRANT FUND FROM THE GENERAL FUND

            Mr. Cumston said this came out of Finance with a 3-0 Approval, motion to suspend, Mr. Thomas 2nd. Roll call: Ayes all, motion carried. Mr. Cumston moved to adopt, Mr. Thomas 2nd. Roll call: Ayes all, motion carried.  RESOLUTION 2014-25 IS ADOPTED

   RESOLUTION 2014-26:

RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE CITY AUDITOR TO MAKE A CASH ADVANCE OF UP TO $1,000.00 TO THE FORMULA GRANT FUND FROM THE GENERAL FUND

            Mr. Cumston said this came out of Finance with a 3-0 approval, motion to suspend, Mr. Osborn 2nd. Roll call: Ayes all, motion carried. Mr. Cumston moved to adopt, Mr. Osborn 2nd. Roll call: Ayes all, motion carried.  RESOLUTION 2014-26 IS ADOPTED

ORDINANCE 2014-80:

ORDINANCE RATIFYING, AUTHORIZING AND APPROVING THE COLLECTIVE BARGAINING AGREEMENT BETWEEN THE CITY OF MARION AND UNITED STEELWORKERS OF AMERICA LOCAL 1949 UNIT 2A AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY

Mr. Cumston said this came out of Finance with a 3-0 recommendation for approval, motion to suspend, Mr. Thomas 2nd. Roll call: Ayes all, motion carried. Mr. Cumston moved to adopt, Mr. Thomas 2nd. Roll call: Ayes all, motion carried. ORDINANCE 2014-80 IS ADOPTED

 

ORDINANCE 2014-81:

ORDINANCE MAKING ADJUSTMENTS TO VARIOUS FUNDS FOR THE YEAR ENDING DECEMBER 31, 2014

Mr. Cumston said this came out of Finance with a 3-0 recommendation for approval, motion to suspend, Mr. Osborn 2nd. Roll call: Ayes all, motion carried. Mr. Cumston moved to adopt, Mr. Osborn 2nd. Roll call: Ayes all, motion carried. ORDINANCE 2014-81 IS ADOPTED

 

 

Matters not on the Agenda

-NONE-

 

 

COMMITTEE DATES:

 

Finance                       1/5       @ 6:30

Jobs & Eco. Deve       1/05    @ 6:40 DT and CANDO 2 Review & 2 Supports

Regional Planning       1/28    @ 7:00 pm County Bldg.

Streets & Sewers        1/5      @ 7:00 Chapter 916 Review

 

 

            With no further business to come before Council, Mr. Edwards adjourned the meeting.

 

 

                                                                        ____________________________                                                                            Dave Edwards                                                                                                             President of Council

_________________________        

Clerk of Council