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Council Meeting minutes for 5/9/06
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posted 12-21-2006 11:13 AM
CITY OF GRASS VALLEY
MINUTES FOR MAY 9, 2006
Gerard Tassone, Mayor Mark Johnson, Vice Mayor
Patti Ingram Lisa Swarthout Dean Williams
CLOSED DOOR SESSION:
Conference with Legal Counsel - Existing Litigation - Pursuant to Govt. Code 54956.9a
City v. Newmont Mining Corp. (USDC, ED No. CIV.S-04-0149 GEB DAD)
No reportable action on this item
REGULAR MEETING OF THE GRASS VALLEY CITY COUNCIL, CAPITAL
IMPROVEMENTS AUTHORITY AND REDEVELOPMENT AGENCY
7:00 P. M., TUESDAY, MAY 9, 2006
1.0 CALL TO ORDER: 7:00 P.M. Next Resolution No.06-31
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE: Next Ordinance No. 661
ROLL CALL: Councilmember Ingram, Swarthout, Williams, Vice Mayor Johnson, Mayor
Tassone were all present.
Staff in attendance included City Administrator Gene Haroldsen, City Clerk Kristi Bashor
and City Attorney Ruthann Ziegler.
2.0 INTRODUCTIONS AND PRESENTATIONS (Limited to 15 minutes)
2.1 Motorcycle Awareness Month (May) – Presentation of a Proclamation to Don
Dickerman, President of ABATE of California Local 52.
Mayor Tassone presented this proclamation to Don Dickerman who is the president of ABATE.
The Mayor spoke about the nicer weather and how it brings out more motorcycles onto the
roadways. He then briefly described the proclamation to the audience. Don Dickerman came
forward to accept the proclamation and thanked the Mayor and Council for the proclamation.
Don then spoke about Motorcycle Safety and Motorcycle Awareness Month.
3.0 ANNOUNCEMENTS, AGENDA REVIEW AND CHANGES
4.0 PUBLIC COMMENT
Howard Levine Executive Director of the Grass Valley Downtown Association came forward
to address the Council regarding a conference that is going to be held on September 27, 28 and
29, 2006 in Monterey California. Howard also spoke about Festival of the Arts which is on
Memorial Day weekend and said that this is their 24th annual event.
5.0 BRIEF REPORTS BY COUNCIL MEMBERS
Councilmember Ingram reported that at the special meeting for the Nevada County
Transportation Commission that two parts of the three parts requested for the new project at
Idaho/Maryland and East Main were approved. The third part of this project was differed to the
May 17th meeting so it may be addressed by the full commission. She also announced that the
state has granted the funding for the addition to the Empire Mine State Park. Vice Mayor
Johnson spoke about progress being made on the budget with the Budget Committee.
Councilmember Swarthout spoke about attending her first budget meeting and thanked the
Mayor for that appointment. She also spoke about attending the Downtown Association Board
Meeting several weeks ago and that things are moving along nicely and there are some changes
in downtown real estate. She announced that next weeks annual LAFCO meeting is going to be
in Truckee and that the budget is on the Agenda.
6.0 CONSENT ITEMS
Vice Mayor Johnson made a motion to approve the consent agenda through item 6.11 and
Councilmember Swarthout seconded. Motion carried by a unanimous roll call vote.
6.1 Warrant Registers
Approved disbursements of $700,985.47.
6.2 Department Reports: a. Finance (Treasurer’s and Investment) b. Building
Received and filed.
6.3 Temporary Clerical Assistance for Human Resources
Authorized execution of contract with Adecco Services.
6.4 Solid Waste Fees
Adopted Resolution # 06-31 granting the City’s consent to allow the County to levy
solid waste parcel fees pursuant to Government Code Section 25830.
6.5 Employment Appointments – Grass Valley Police Department
Approved appointment of Brian Blakemore as a Police Officer, Matthew Hammond as
a Police Officer Trainee and Mary Cloud as a Dispatcher.
6.6 Wage Increase for Public Works Temporary / Seasonal Employees
Adopted Resolution # 06-32 revising established rates of pay.
6.7 2006 Budget Amendments – Adjusting cost allocations for Fiscal Year 2005/2006
Approved budget amendments adjusting Capital Projects.
6.8 Moule Paint and Glass – Traffic Generation Restrictions at 627 and 700 East Main
Authorized execution of agreement.
6.9 Capital Improvement Program – “As Needed” Engineering Services
Authorized execution of agreements with Coastland Civil Engineering and Terrance
Lowell & Associates; authorized execution of amendments up to $1,000 and adjusting
project budgets as needed.
6.10 Purchase of New Parking Enforcement Vehicle (GO-4) – Police Department
Approved Resolution #06-33 authorizing purchase.
6.11 Community Development Block Grant #04-STBG-1960 – FY05-06 Budget Set Up
Approved budget codes and amounts.
Council Recessed as City Council and convened as the City of Grass Valley Redevelopment
6.12 Community Development Block Grant #04-STBG-1960 – FY05-06 Budget set-up
Board member Swarthout made a motion to approve item 6.12 and Board member
Williams seconded. The motion carried by a unanimous roll call vote approving a
budget transfer of $100,000 from RDA funds.
The Redevelopment Agency adjourned and City Council reconvened.
7.0 COUNCIL - No Items
8.0 PUBLIC HEARINGS
8.1 Olympia Gardens Appeal – 304 Sutton Way
Community Development Director Joe Heckel presented this item to Council. He
explained that the applicant has asked to continue the Public Hearing to the June 27,
2006 as NID has not yet ruled on his request to waive installing separate water meters to
units he is converting from apartments to condominiums. Vice Mayor Johnson made a
motion to continue the Public Hearing to June 27, 2006. Councilmember Swarthout
seconded. Motion carried by a unanimous voice vote.
8.2 Density Bonus Incentive Process – Amending Zoning Code Section 15-14 a-d
Community Development Director Joe Heckel presented this item to Council. Joe
explained that this item deals with a procedural change that is within the zoning code.
Joe explained that a Bonus Density is a provision in state law where an applicant can
get a bonus to the overall density of their property if they meet certain criteria and
provide affordable housing. He described the current process for the City’s Bonus
Density and said that the Planning Commission felt the process was cumbersome and
wanted to see projects in their entirety before acting on the Bonus Density. In response
to the Planning Commissions request staff drafted the ordinance being presented tonight
which revises the current City ordinance to allow a for a Bonus Density request to be
considered at the same time as the development project. This will allow weighing of the
merits of the Bonus Density at the same time as the development project so the merits
of the Bonus Density can be considered at the same time as the entire project. He said
that the Planning Commission did recommend support for this change after reviewing
the revised change and that also the Planning Commission discussed affordable housing
and the need to look at some new measures in the future and asked that the Council
consider an inclusionary ordinance as they look at updating the zoning code. The Mayor
opened and closed the Public Hearing for this item. Councilmember Ingram moved to
waive the reading in its entirety and read by title only and Councilmember Williams
seconded. Motion carried by a unanimous voice vote. The City Clerk read the ordinance
title at this time. Councilmember Swarthout moved to introduce the ordinance and
Councilmember Ingram seconded. Motion carried by a unanimous roll call vote.
8.3 Development Impact Fees (DIF) for Local Traffic and Circulation Improvements*
Tim Kiser, City Engineer presented this item to Council. Tim explained that the firm of
Tishlerbise has been retained to prepare an impact fee study in order to analyze the
impacts of development on the City’s roadways and circulation system and to calculate
a development impact fee based on that analysis. He said that the impact fee calculated
in this chapter is intended to replace the City’s current impact fee and to satisfy all legal
requirements of such a fee. He reviewed the list of projects listed by Tishlerbise in the
study and said that the total cost of the local fee portion of the projects is $4.2 million
dollars. He explained that they then prepared an analysis of average daily trips between
2005 and 2020 to help calculate the impact fee. Tim reviewed the breakdown of the
trips and explained that Tishlerbise calculated an average cost per weekday trip as well
as adding in reimbursement for the cost of study. Tim said that the proposed local
Traffic Fee that Tishlerbise is recommending is $196.56. Tim explained how the fee
can be calculated in different scenarios. Tishlerbise used this information and the
proposed fee and prepared a cash flow analysis that looks at the revenue that would be
generated between now and 2020 which showed a deficit of $538,000. Tishlerbise then
looked at a fee summary of where the City is at with projects at this time and there are
currently $6.78 million dollars in project costs and of that the local fee portion is 68%.
Tim showed where the remaining funding will come from. He reviewed the deficit there
will be to fully fund the program and what staff is proposing to help offset the project
costs, which is to remove two projects (East Main Street – Berryhill to Hughes and
Hughes Road – East Main to Cypress Hill) from the interim project list and add them to
the long term list to be re-evaluated upon completion of the traffic study. He said that
the Engineering Department also proposed a change to add the East Main/Idaho
Maryland Intersection round about project due to NCTC not initiating the process for an
interim update of the RTMF program at their April 26th commission meeting. NCTC
wants to incorporate the proposed revisions to the RTMF program as part of their
current update in progress. Due to the City’s desire to insure funding for this regionally
significant project and the RTMF update and adoption not being known at this time the
Engineering Department is proposing to add this project to insure funding for the
proposed construction of the improvements. He explained that changes in the project
list will also change fees. Tim then went through calculations and changes for the fees
and how fully funding the program can be accomplished. He presented a revised impact
fee calculation. Vice Mayor Johnson asked Tim that if NCTC does adopt this fee if the
City would reverse the fee when the fee comes to us. Tim explained that that would be
the preferred option or an additional project could be added into the program to make
up the cost difference. Councilmember Swarthout spoke about the fees and the portion
of the money that would go to the County when they adopt the fees. Councilmember
Ingram said that NCTC approved 2 parts to a 3 part request. She said that one was to
accept the revised projects and the other was to release or return the funds that they had
previously collected. The third request that staff brought forward was to adopt the
interim fees. She said that she encouraged the other commissioners to agree to accept
this interim fee for a period of time so money was not lost while NCTC continued to
develop their update of their fee program. She said it was the consensus of the
Commissioners that were there that a recommendation would be going to the Cities of
Nevada City and Grass Valley sometime in July for the final fee but that she feels it is
extremely unlikely this will happen by then. She said there is a lot more work to be
done and there are numbers that are not yet available. She said she hoping that at the
NCTC meeting on May 17th she will be able to encourage the Commission to accept an
interim fee to collect for projects that will be happening between now and when the
adoption of final fees take place. She said she feels it is important that money not be
lost during that time. She said that she was able to garner the acceptance from two
Chairmen to look at the item one more time on May 17th. Tim answered questions from
Councilmember Williams regarding mitigation of the intersection. The Mayor opened
the public hearing at this time. Barbara Bashall of the Nevada County Contractors
Association came forward to express her support of this item. Barbara asked if NCTC
votes on May 17th to go forward with an interim fee what affect it will have with staff
going forward with this process. Tim responded that staff will continue as
recommended to add the project in at this time as this starts the 60 day process for the
City. If NCTC approves the interim fees it still has to go to all three jurisdictions for
approval and if one says no then they won’t be collecting for the fee and the City will be
right back to where we are now. In the interim it covers one or two months to be sure
that fees are being collected until NCTC’s interim fees start. Vice Mayor Johnson said
that he is glad to see that this has come to a successful conclusion and thanked
Councilmember Ingram for her help on the Committee. Councilmember Ingram said
that she thought the opportunity for contractors and other parties to participate in the
process were very helpful. Councilmember Williams said that when the City Traffic
Model is completed that he hopes at that time the Council will consider adding
something to the project list that recognizes the fact that as new development is built it
also increases the demand not just for improvement of traffic flow but also for
infrastructure for pedestrians and bicyclists. Councilmember Swarthout moved to
approve Resolution 06-34. Councilmember Williams seconded and the motion carried
by a unanimous roll call vote.
9.0 STAFF REPORTS, REQUESTS AND COMMUNICATIONS
9.1 NCTC’s Survey Results and a Potential Sales Tax Measure
City Administrator Gene Haroldsen presented this item to Council. He explained that
NCTC conducted a survey that was handled by the firm of Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin
and Associates (FMMA) which is the same firm that conducted the Community Survey.
He explained the process of the surveys and the numbers surveyed as well as the margin
of error. Gene reported that one of the questions that were asked was on the Nevada
County Transportation, Safety, Road Improvement and Traffic Measure which is a
potential measure that has been looked at by Nevada County. He reviewed the results
of the survey with the Council. He also reviewed the sales tax bases in the surrounding
areas and said that Nevada City last night decided to move forward with a .50%
increase in sales tax for street maintenance, sidewalks and drainage as a special tax for
consideration this November. Gene explained the differences in sales and use tax and
transactions and use tax. He explained that one is based on point of sale and the other is
based on point of use. He explained the different types of taxes both sales and general
and the necessary votes needed to have them pass. Gene described the draft expenditure
plan that he included in the Council packets and the four projects within the plan and
costs associated with those projects. He then reviewed the four questions included in
the staff report regarding this possible sales tax measure. He spoke about the time frame
if Council decided to move forward with the tax measure. Councilmember Williams
asked about item #2 on the expenditure plan and asked that Gene verify when it refers
to drainage and flood improvements that it is referring to those improvements that are
related in transportation in some way or is it talking about any drainage and flood
improvements. Gene answered that it is to address priority projects in the drainage and
flood area where the infrastructure is inadequate. Councilmember Williams then asked
about the downtown parking plaza that it refers to along with other public
improvements and whether they must be associated transportation also or would it be
any public improvements. Gene responded that public improvements would be things
like intersection improvements, safety improvements, and parking lot improvements.
Vice Mayor Johnson asked what the length of the tax that Nevada City chose to put on
the ballot is and Gene responded 16 years. Vice Mayor Johnson then had questions
regarding the bonding for the larger projects on the list and if the smaller projects would
be handled as the money came in for them. He also asked about the fund that the money
would reside in and Gene explained that it would be that it would be a separate fund for
this purpose only and that it would be audited and budgeted every year. The City
Attorney responded to questions from Council regarding the difference between a
General Tax and a Special Tax. Councilmember Ingram said that she feels it is
extremely important that once the expenditure plan has been set up that it can not be
changed in the future to be used for anything other than what is in the expenditure plan.
Unless for some reason one of the projects was somehow paid for in another way and
the money planned for that project was no longer needed, then a future Council could
discuss what to do with the money. Councilmember Swarthout said she is in favor of
the Special Tax as it is less complicated. The Mayor invited the public to come forward
to speak on this item. Howard Levine, Executive Director of the GVDA came forward
to address the Council and said that he and his board members are in full support of
moving forward with this ordinance and that they support the Special Tax. Ron Fegley,
resident of Grass Valley, came forward and asked if Council had considered some sort
of Gasoline Tax for these transportation improvements. The City Attorney Ruthann
Ziegler said that she does not think that the City has the jurisdiction to impose a
Gasoline Tax. Matt Weaver, Weaver Auto and Truck Center, 520 East Main came
forward and expressed his support for a Special Tax. Vice Mayor Johnson Commented
on the budget of the city and that this tax will be an investment in the town and that he
supports the Special Tax. Councilmember Ingram also stated that not only will those
who live in Grass Valley be paying this tax but others who drive into town and use our
roads and shop here will also be paying this tax and helping to repay for the use of the
streets here. Councilmember Williams said that he feels this is completely appropriate
to be put on the ballot and let the taxpayers say if this is how they want to spend their
money. Councilmember Swarthout said that she has struggled with this idea as she is a
retail person and additional taxes are hard to support but when she saw the list of
community improvements that can be accomplished she changed her mind. Mayor
Tassone said that he thinks the timing is right and that it is well thought out and sees
what the City can gain by having this tax. It also shows the State that there is
willingness in the community to additionally fund transportation projects and that the
State will look favorably upon this and may also decide to grant additional funding for
projects. Councilmember Ingram made a motion to waive the reading of the ordinance
in its entirety and read by title only. Councilmember Swarthout seconded. The motion
carried by a unanimous voice vote. Vice Mayor Johnson moved to introduce the
ordinance that is a Special Tax to be put on the November ballot. Councilmember
Swarthout seconded. The motion carried by a unanimous roll call vote.
9.2 Weaver Automotive Reimbursement Agreement
Tim Kiser, City Engineer, introduced this item to Council, and called on Joe Heckel
Community Development Director to provide an update on the Weaver Automotive
project. Joe came forward and gave the update and where the project is to date. He also
listed the remaining improvements that are still needed. Tim spoke about one major
storm drainage project crossing Idaho Maryland Road that needs to be completed and
various other improvements and the stages that they are in. He spoke about the
encroachment permit from Caltrans and the timeline on the submittals from the
applicant and that the full comments will not be ready for three weeks according to
Caltrans. Tim then spoke about working with the applicant concerning the preparation
of the reimbursement agreement in accordance within condition of approval number 41.
He reviewed the condition which requires Weaver to design and construct a traffic
signal at the intersection of Idaho/Maryland Road and State Route 20/49 east bound
ramps and states the applicant may enter into a reimbursement agreement for the
associated costs in excess of Weaver’s fair share amount. He explained the formula
used to come up with a percentage for Weaver’s fair share amount. He reviewed the
project costs and Weaver’s share and reimbursement from Caltrans. He said that staff is
proposing that he be reimbursed over a 6 ½ year period of 7 equal amounts of a little
over $27,000 per payment. He spoke about security to insure reimbursement. Tim also
spoke about the last meetings modifications that were requested and the modified
agreement concerning the payment of Caltrans funding. He said that Weaver shall be
reimbursed by the City with funds actually received from Caltrans no more than 30 days
after the City has received the funds and has accepted the improvements. Matt Weaver
addressed Council regarding an indemnification clause in the agreement. Matt is asking
that a clause indemnifying him for design of the signal be added to the agreement. The
City Attorney responded to this request and recommended no changes to the contract
regarding indemnification. Vice Mayor Johnson questioned Matt regarding the time
frame for the Caltrans study and plans that Matt had given Council 2 weeks prior. Matt
said that 2 weeks ago the information was accurate but other items came up and set
back the time frame. Vice Mayor Johnson then asked about the completion date for the
signal. Matt responded that he thinks they are still fairly close to the October 1st date
that was spoken about before. Vice Mayor Johnson asked what Matt’s estimate would
be for the opening of the business. Matt said that it would not be before July 1st and
reviewed what was still left to finish before they could be moved in. Vice Mayor
Johnson said that he wanted to emphasize the importance of having the project 100%
complete prior to any use of the site for automobile sales. Matt responded to Council’s
concerns regarding time schedules. Council and staff discussed changing the
reimbursement agreement if deadlines are not met by the applicant. Council discussed
the indemnification clause and chose not to make changes to the agreement.
Councilmember Ingram moved to authorize the execution of an agreement for the
traffic signal improvements and authorize the City Engineer to approve changes orders
up to $27,000 as amended with the Caltrans. Vice Mayor Johnson seconded. Motion
carried by a unanimous roll call vote.
Council recessed for 5 minutes and reconvened at 8:45 p.m.
9.3 Decision Making Process for the Special Development Areas (SDAs) – Step 1
Joe Heckel, Community Development Director introduced this item and
Planning Director Tom Last who also helped to present the item. He reviewed the
history of this item with Council then gave a brief overview of tonight’s presentation.
The main areas that would be touched on were the current status of the 2020 General
Plan, Housing Trends, Annexation Trends and Population trend. Tom Last addressed
Council regarding the General Plan and provided the history of the General Plan and
annexations that have taken place. He reviewed the sphere of influence for the City.
Tom gave the history of the population of the City and the Growth through the years.
He then spoke about the 2020 General Plan housing projections. He moved on to vacant
land inventory and that as of 2006 only 16% of the City’s land is considered vacant. Joe
reviewed a more detailed breakdown of the vacant land right now which includes 139
acres for residential and 295 for commercial of which looking at what is buildable
within the Grass Valley current city limits is about 10%. At this point Joe reviewed the
results of the January 31 workshop with the Planning Commission. Joe spoke about the
key points discussed at the January 31 workshop. He gave a brief summary of the
results of the survey. Joe continued on to the Results of the Economic and Fiscal
Conditions Study from April of 2006. Joe spoke about the alternatives that were in the
summary of the survey and reviewed each alternative with the Council using the table
from the survey titled Economic and Fiscal Impact Summary of SDA Land Use
Alternatives 2005-2020. Joe reviewed the summary of key points from the study with
the Council. Vice Mayor Johnson commented on evaluating the SDA’s and keeping the
balance in the City. Councilmember Williams commented about jobs and housing
balance. Councilmember Swarthout commented about the difference between
commercial space and job creation. Mayor Tassone commented that what will
eventually have to be decided is the land use mix and that once that figure is in mind
they can start making decisions. Councilmember Swarthout said that she thinks what
will define that is the housing units as that seems to be the starting point when
reviewing the applications, which means after determination of the housing units
Council will need to work backwards with all the other numbers. Councilmember
Ingram commented that they need to keep in mind that not all these projects will be
built between now and 2020, that some of these projects will go further into the future.
Councilmember Swarthout asked what happens in 2020 or 2030 and if the Cities are
just completely built out and done? Mayor Tassone said that one of the limiting factors
are the capacity of the infrastructure like the wastewater treatment plant and that is why
it was designed to the lower number rather than the higher number. So there is some
self imposed growth limitation based upon that number that was adopted years ago.
This does kind of limit the population to what is projected in the current General Plan.
Councilmember Ingram spoke about the Marketing and Feasibility Study for the SDA
and that one of the recommendations was that if a retail or commercial project is being
done how will it affect downtown and that she thinks this would be another study. She
thought that requirements such as that type of study being done might be looked at for
the EIR. Joe Heckel announced that June 1st will be the date for a Community Forum to
gain input on growth and development. He gave a brief overview of some of staff’s
ideas for topics of discussion. Vice Mayor Johnson asked about the 3rd step that will be
coming up in the future. Councilmember Swarthout asked if there was a possibility of
having a second Community Forum if there is interest in it and Joe said yes. Joe also
noted that on the third Step the Council would provide staff with definitive direction on
the parameters of a land use mix for the Sphere of Influence and the SDA’s in addition
to what amenities they would like to see the SDA’s address and that a resolution would
then be adopted incorporating that language. Councilmember Ingram asked about the
type of outreach staff will use for the meeting on June 1st to make sure that everyone
understands that these meetings will not continue for a long period of time. Joe
responded to her questions.
10.0 ITEMS REMOVED FROM CONSENT CALENDAR FOR DISCUSSION OR
SEPARATE ACTION AND / OR ANY ADDED AGENDA ITEMS
11.0 CITY OF GRASS VALLEY REDEVELOPMENT AGENCY – See Agenda Item 6.12
12.0 CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS AUTHORITY – No Items
13.0 CLOSED DOOR SESSIONS – (held earlier in the evening)
There was no reportable action taken.
The meeting was adjourned by Mayor Tassone at 9:50 P.M.
All times are PST
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