The City of Union council meeting was called to order by Vice-Mayor Lawrence Beyer on Monday evening at 7:30 p.m.
Attendance was taken and the following council members were present: Mr. Bruns, Mrs. Terry, Mr. Hissong, Mr. O'Callaghan, Mrs. Goudy, and Mr. Beyer. Other city staff members present were John P. Applegate, City Manager, Janet Hamilton, sitting in for Denise A. Winemiller, Clerk of Council, Joe Moore, Law Director, and Mike Blackwell, Police Chief.
Mr. Beyer said that Mayor Packard had called in and was unable to attend the meeting due to illness. Mr. Beyer moved that his absence be excused. Mr. O'Callaghan seconded the motion. All concurred and Mayor Packard's absence was excused.
Mr. Beyer asked for a moment of silence.
1. Mr. Beyer asked if there were any additions or corrections on the minutes from the March 22, 2004 council meeting. Mr. Bruns moved that the minutes be accepted as prepared. Mr. O'Callaghan seconded the motion. Mrs. Terry and Mr. Hissong abstained, Mr. Bruns, Mr. O'Callaghan, Mrs. Goudy, and Mr. Beyer voted for the motion and the minutes of the March 22, 2004 council meeting were accepted as prepared.
2. Mr. Beyer
said one citizen, Mr. Roger Hansel, has indicated he wanted to
address the council. Mr. Hansel said he had attended the last
meeting and asked if the city could check on the drainage in
his back yard on West Boitnott and the ball park. Mr. Applegate
said he had not had a chance to look at that yet. Mr. Hansel
said he had made a few notes he wanted to ask about. He said
there were four low areas that were holding water, and it was
stagnant water and he was concerned about mosquitoes. He said
3. ONE READING
- RESOLUTION 04-01 - A RESOLUTION DECLARING THE
Mr. Applegate said this was the first necessary step to put the police levy back on the ballot for August. The purpose of this resolution was to have the county auditor provide the city with the amount of money that would be collected. He said he was also working on a resolution for the fire department.
Mr. Hissong said that he felt the police levy was needed very badly.
Mr. Bruns moved to have the one and only reading and adopt Resolution 04-01. Mr. Hissong seconded the motion. All concurred and the motion was passed.
4. Open Agenda
Mrs. Terry said that she had noticed a problem with people walking their dogs and not cleaning up after them. She asked if the city had something in writing against that. Mr. Applegate said there were regulations prohibiting that. Mr. Bruns suggested that they include that information in the next newsletter. Mr. Applegate said they had done that in the past and they will remind people in the next newsletter.
Mr. O'Callaghan said he wanted to comment on how pretty the pear trees looked along Main Street.
Mr. O'Callaghan asked how the Easter egg hunt had gone. Mrs. Terry said it was wonderful, and many Easter baskets had been given away. She thanked the fire department who had brought the Easter bunny. Mr. O'Callaghan thanked Mrs. Terry for organizing the event.
Mr. Applegate reminded the council members to send in their financial disclosure form if they hadn't already.
He also commented that the 2004 Englewood water and sewer survey was out and Union is the ninth lowest for water and sewer rates out of 70 communities. He said in the memorandum provided to the council, where it says the ratings are "up" it should say "down".
Mr. Applegate said their current mowing contractor, RB Services, had offered to keep the price the same and extend the contract an additional year. Mr. Beyer moved that they extend the contract with RB services, at the same price, for another year. Mr. O'Callaghan seconded the motion. All concurred and the motion was passed.
Mr. Applegate brought to the council's attention an invitation from Clayton, included in their council packets, inviting council members to the opening day ceremonies for Hardscrabble Park for the Little League.
A public record request had been received from Ron Kidwell. Mr. Applegate commented that he had provided Mr. Kidwell with totals of tap in fees collected from 1994 to 2003 along with information on bond anticipation notes. Mr. Applegate provided copies of the document request to the council.
Mr. Moore mentioned the decision from the Court of Appeals in the case of Butler Township and Ronald Kidwell vs. the City of Union. Mr. Moore said he wanted to go over statements from the opinion that he thought was significant for the city and for the public to understand. This case was from November 7, 2000 on the charter amendment wherein the city could not accept an annexation without having a vote by the electorate first. Mr. Moore said after the amendment had passed, he gave a legal opinion that it was an unenforceable charter amendment because annexations are a matter of general statewide concern and the state law controls. Butler Township and Ron Kidwell sued the city in regard to that charter amendment. At the trial level, common pleas court Judge Wagner issued a restraining order and said that, " the charter amendment does not violate the Ohio Constitution". The city appealed that decision.
The Court of
Appeals decision stated, " The appellants appeal from the
trial court's decision and assign it as in total error. We agree
with the appellants." (the City of Union). The decision
also reads, "The Supreme Court of Ohio has already determined
that annexation is not a matter of local self-government. Annexation
laws enacted by the General Assembly are general laws and 'activities
by way of charter, ordinance, or otherwise, of municipalities
may not be in conflict therewith.'."
Mr. Moore said
this means you can't make a charter amendment or ordinance that
conflicts with state law. Butler Township and Mr. Kidwell tried
to argue that there was no conflict but the Court of Appeals
decision read, "We find there is a conflict, however, because
the Ohio General Assembly has granted to the governing body of
cities the right to initially accept or decline an annexation.
The Charter Amendment in question here takes away that power
from the governing body and puts it to the initial test by a
vote of the electorate. The vote must be held before the city
governing body considers the annexation petition, which deprives
the electorate of any of the reasoning of the governing body
before the vote is held". Mr. Moore commented that the court
was saying that a vote would keep the citizens from knowing what
the council thinks about the annexation. The decision reads,
" To require such a vote of the electorate before the city
governing body can act is a definite intrusion into the laws
of annexation as promulgated
Mr. Moore said therefore, the court sustained the assignment of error and they reversed the trial court in this matter. Mr. Moore added that Butler Township and Mr. Kidwell are trying to get the case into the Supreme Court of Ohio.
Mr. Hansel asked Mr. Moore why he passed annexations as an emergency and in one meeting and didn't give the citizens a chance to have a referendum. Mr. Moore said to paraphrase what the Court of Appeals said, the council was an elected body and represented all of the citizens of Union and if the council feels it is in the best interest for the annexation to be accepted in one reading, the council has the discretion to do that. They are elected to exercise their judgment.
Mr. Hansel asked if the annexation passed and became effective right away, how soon does the city have to supply the governing bodies of land with water, sewer, trash, etc. Mr. Beyer said Union would be the governing body of land and it would depend on what the service resolution stated.
Mr. Applegate said installation of water and sewer lines is sometimes based on availability. If it is there, developers or the people can tie into it at their expense. There is no set time limit on when to tie into the city's water and sewer.
Mr. Beyer commented as to what was said about the first trial judge in the decision that Mr. Moore had referred to earlier in the meeting. Mr. Moore read that portion of the decision. "The trial court granted the appellees most of the relief they sought, denied the appellants' motion for summary judgment, and, without citations or reasons, merely stated that 'the Charter amendment does not violate the Ohio Constitution.' (Doc.28). Undoubtedly, the court made the decision in such a summary fashion because in its decision it stated that the parties had 'agreed that the only matters remaining are issues of law which will be addressed here in short fashion as they will likely be resolved at the appellate level.' Id."
Mr. Beyer said he just wanted to get that part on the record.
Mr. Beyer also noted that Butler Township is taking Union to court about Union's charter, using Butler Township taxpayer's money, now appealing to the supreme court in concert with Mr. Kidwell, who is suing the City of Union for using taxpayer funds for a public purpose as well. He also said he would like to know if the Butler township residents knew how much their officials were spending taking the City of Union to court over a charter amendment to Union's charter.
5. Mr. O'Callaghan moved that the council meeting be adjourned. Mr. Beyer seconded the motion. All concurred and the council meeting was adjourned.
Mayor Packard called the April 26, 2004 City of Union council meeting to order at 7:30 p.m., Monday evening.
Attendance was taken and the following council members were present: Mr. Bruns, Mrs. Terry, Mayor Packard, Mr. O'Callaghan, Mrs. Goudy, and Mr. Beyer. Other city staff members present were John P. Applegate, City Manager, Janet Hamilton, sitting in for Denise Winemiller, Clerk of Council, Joe Moore, Law Director, Michael Blackwell, Police Chief, Bud Bergman, Fire Chief.
Mayor Packard moved to excuse Mr. Hissong from the council meeting since he had recently had surgery. Mr. O'Callaghan seconded the motion. All concurred and his absence was excused.
Mayor Packard called for a moment of silence.
1. Mayor Packard asked if there were any additions or corrections from the minutes of the April 12, 2004 council meeting. There were no changes so Mr. O'Callaghan moved that the minutes be accepted as prepared. Mr. Beyer seconded the motion. Mayor Packard abstained, the other council members voted for the motion and the April 12, 2004 council minutes were accepted as prepared.
2. Citizens' and Visitors' comments
Mayor Packard said there were two people in the audience that had indicated that they wished to speak.
Garrett Bush said he lived at 225 Marrett Farm and wanted to complain about the street sweeper that was being operated by the developer. Mr. Bush said the sweeper was dumping the dirt in the green space and the dirt was blowing on to their properties. He also asked when the green space would be completed.
Mr. Applegate said the city was requiring the developer to sweep the streets and they would ask them to dump the dirt elsewhere. Mr. Applegate said the green space he was referring to was access to the section of ground that would be the detention pond and it was not ready to be completed yet.
Roger Hansel said he had asked the council about standing water near his property at 212 West Boitnott and about the NABL running the tractor, stirring up dust on the ball diamonds.
Mr. Applegate said he had talked to the president of the NABL last week and asked them to keep down the dust when working on the ball diamonds. He said he had talked to the president of the organization but if Mr. Hansel was still having a problem, he would talk to the NABL again.
Mr. Applegate said he had been out to check on the standing water. He said he did not know how it had appeared as the swale that had been installed there had been keeping the area drained. Mr. Applegate said he would put the swale on the schedule and get it repaired.
Mr. Hansel also asked about a pile of leaves dumped behind a nearby house. Since the house was owned by a relative of Mrs. Terry, she said she would check on that.
said that Mr. Hansel had also complained earlier about a camper
parking in the green space and the city had called and talked
3. ONE READING
- ORDINANCE 1316 - AN ORDINANCE PROPOSING A REPLACEMENT LEVY
Mr. Applegate said this was the next step in getting the police levy on the ballot. The information from the Montgomery County auditor on the values of the property and what the millage would bring in was attached to the ordinance.
Mr. Bruns moved to waive the charter requirement of three separate readings on three separate days in regard to Ordinance 1316. Mr. Beyer seconded the motion. All concurred and the motion was passed.
Mr. Bruns then moved to have the one and only reading and adopt Ordinance 1316. Mr. Beyer seconded the motion. All concurred and Ordinance 1316 was adopted.
Mr. Applegate said the next two resolutions dealt with the fire levy. He said he had recently met with Lynn App Architects on the expansion of the fire department. The cost for the modifications is estimated to be in the range of $600,000 to $700,000 dollars. Mr. Applegate said he was looking for the best way to get the levy passed. What was on the agenda was Resolution 04-02, which was a replacement levy for 2.5 mills and Resolution 04-03 which was a new levy for 2.0 mills. Mr. Applegate said in talking to Mr. Bruns, since the effective rate on the replacement levy is only 1.80, and they were looking at adding additional millage, they would consider dropping the 2.5 replacement and ask for a new 2.5 mill levy. He proposed to deleted Resolution 04-02 and have a new Resolution 04-03, with a 2.5 mill request.
Fire Chief Bergman said they were only 25 hours short of have the fire department staffed twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. Mr. Applegate said it was not a volunteer department any more. The tax rate that they are asking for is half the amount they receive in Butler Township and Harrison Township.
Mr. Applegate said when the fire department was created, they had promised not to ask for additional millage for five years. The fire department had been operating since 1998, six years, without additional funding.
Chief Bergman said they were needing to look at replacing some of their apparatus, like a new ambulance, and that all of the medical equipment cost money.
4. ONE READING
- RESOLUTION 04-02 - A RESOLUTION DECLARING THE NECESSITY OF
5. ONE READING
- RESOLUTION 04-03 -A RESOLUTION DECLARING THE NECESSITY OF
Mr. Beyer moved to delete Resolution 04-02 from the agenda. Mr. Bruns seconded the motion. All concurred and the resolution was deleted.
Mr. Beyer then moved to modify resolution 04-03 from 2 mills to 2.5 mills. Mr. Bruns seconded the motion. All concurred and the motion was passed.
Mr. Beyer then moved to have the one and only reading and adopt Resolution 04-03, a new fire levy for 2.5 mills. Mr. Bruns seconded the motion. All concurred and the motion was adopted.
6. Open Agenda
Mayor Packard thanked Mr. Beyer for filling in for him at the last meeting.
The mayor reminded everyone that they were invited to the NABL parade on May 1, 2004 that would be starting on Rinehart Road at 10:00 a.m.
Mr. O'Callaghan said he had noticed that it was hard to keep up with the mowing with all of the rain but thought the city crews were doing well.
Mrs. Terry said she thought the city was looking great, the trees along Main Street looked wonderful and that everyone was working and really improving their property. Mrs. Terry also said she hoped that the citizens backed the police levy.
Mr. Applegate said Ron Kidwell had brought in two initiative petitions to be placed on the ballot. The petitions had been carried by Shannon E. Scott, 102 Wickham Farm Circle, Charles J. Arnett, 111 Worman Drive, Rodger Hansel, 212 West Boitnott Drive, Sherri Rabius, 138 Union Ridge, and Ronald Kidwell, 119 McCraw Drive.
Mr. Moore said the petitions dealt with two different parts of the charter. The first one reads:
Section 5.09 Public Information on Issues. The Council shall have the power to appropriate and authorize the expenditure of public funds to provide information, WITHOUT ADVOCATING ITS POSITION to the members of the public in connection with elections on proposed tax levies and bond issues for the purposes of the Municipality, and other NON-TAX issues affecting the Municipality and not involving the election of candidates to a public office, or the recall of a member of the Council.
Mr. Moore said this would change the charter in that the city could spend public funds to provide information on tax levies but they were not authorized to "advocate its position".
The second petition reads:
Section 2.06 Procedures
as otherwise provided in this Charter, each ordinance approved
by the Council will be effective at the end of thirty days following
passage, or such longer period as is determined by the Council.
If the Council determines that an ordinance should be passed
on an emergency basis, the reasons for declaring such ordinance
to be an emergency measure shall be set forth in one section
of the ordinance, which section shall be passed only upon a yea
and nay vote upon a separate roll call with at least five
This one indicates that the council could not annex any land by an emergency vote by council and they were proposing a new section to the charter that an increase in utility rates would have to be approved by a majority vote of the public. Mr. Moore said it was questionable if the proposed section was enforceable.
Fire Chief Bergman thanked the council for their support. He said that they were having an influx of personnel and new volunteers and needed more space. He said their first ambulance was seven years old and the second one was fifteen years old. Even though their equipment was well taken care of, he explained that there was a difference in the way an older vehicle runs compared to a new vehicle.
Additional safety features on new equipment would add to the cost, but Chief Bergman said it was important to continue to have safe equipment.
He said they tried to keep vehicles for fifteen years. Their fire engine was a 1981, twenty-three years old. He said they were paying employees less than other departments and paying less in taxes but were still having people trying to work for the Union fire department so they must be doing something right. He said not only have they met their goal of a five minute response time but they are at four minutes and have never exceeded five minutes.
Recently, there was a call in Clayton and they called for Phillipsburg and West Milton, and Union third, but Union was the first to respond.
7. Mr. Beyer moved that the council meeting be adjourned. Mr. Bruns seconded the motion. All concurred and the council meeting was adjourned.
Mayor Packard called the May 10, 2004 City of Union council meeting to order. Attendance was taken and the following council members were present: Mr. Bruns, Mrs. Terry, Mayor Packard, Mr. O'Callaghan, Mrs. Goudy, and Mr. Beyer. Other city staff members present were John P. Applegate, City Manager, Denise Winemiller, Clerk of Council, and Joe Moore, Law Director.
Mayor Packard moved to excuse Mr. Hissong from attending the meeting since he was currently in the hospital. Mr. O'Callaghan seconded the motion. All concurred and Mr. Hissong's absence was excused.
Mayor Packard called for a moment of silence.
1. Mayor Packard asked if there were any additions or corrections to the minutes from the April 26, 2004 council meeting. There were none so Mr. Bruns moved that the minutes be accepted as prepared. Mr. O'Callaghan seconded the motion. All concurred and the minutes from the April 26, 2004 council meeting were accepted as prepared.
2. There were no comments from citizens and visitors at the meeting.
3. ONE READING - RESOLUTION 04-04 - A RESOLUTION DECLARING THE NECESSITY OF AN ADDITIONAL FIRE/EMS LEVY IN EXCESS OF THE TEN-MILL LIMITATION AND CERTIFYING THE QUESTION TO BE PLACED ON THE BALLOT TO THE MONTGOMERY COUNTY BOARD OF ELECTIONS. 3. Mr. Applegate said this was the next step in putting the fire and ems levy on the ballot.
Mr. Bruns moved to have the one and only reading and adopt Resolution 04-04. Mayor Packard seconded the motion. All concurred and Resolution 04-04 was adopted.
4. Open Agenda
Mayor Packard asked how often the City of Union web site was updated. He suggested that the water and sewer rate survey be included. Mr. Applegate said it had already been provided to the person responsible for updating the web site so he would check on that.
Mr. O'Callaghan said Mrs. Winemiller had reminded him that they need to suggest nominees for the Spirit of Union award. Mr. O'Callaghan asked for the council to nominate any outstanding properties that they have noticed in town.
Mr. O'Callaghan asked if Mr. Applegate was going to address the fire levy during the meeting. Mr. Applegate said he had met with the police chief and others last week and they were starting to get information together and dates for a meeting at the school. Mr. O'Callaghan said he would like to be involved in that.
Mayor Packard said they were working with John Parrish, Captain of the fire department and Police Chief Mike Blackwell to have a public meeting to explain the two levies.
Mrs. Terry said she hoped everyone would turn out at the meeting and she thought it was a very important issue.
Mr. Bruns and the others welcomed Mrs. Winemiller back to the meeting.
5. Mr. Beyer moved that the council meeting be adjourned. Mr. O'Callaghan seconded the motion. All concurred and the May 10, 2004 City of Union council meeting was adjourned.
Mayor Packard called the May 24, 2004 City of Union council meeting to order. Attendance was taken and the following council members were present: Mr. Bruns, Mr. Hissong, Mayor Packard, Mr. O'Callaghan, Mrs. Goudy, and Mr. Beyer. Other city staff members present were: John P. Applegate, City Manager, Denise Winemiller, Clerk of Council, Joe Moore, Law Director, and Mike Blackwell, Police Chief.
Mayor Packard said Mrs. Terry had called and was coming down with strep throat. He moved that her absence be excused. There was no second to the motion. Mrs. Terry's absence was not excused.
Mayor Packard called for a moment of silence.
1. Mayor Packard asked if there were any corrections or additions to the minutes of the May 10, 2004 council meeting. There were none so Mr. Bruns moved that the minutes be accepted as prepared. Mayor Packard seconded the motion. All concurred and the council meeting minutes were accepted as prepared.
2. Shirley Hissong from West Martindale Road told the council how helpful the Union police and fire department had been to their family.
3. ONE READING
- 04 - 05 - A RESOLUTION SUPPORTING A PROPOSED POLICE
Mr. Applegate said this was a resolution supporting the proposed police department and authorized the city to spend money to support the issue.
Mr. Beyer moved to have the one and only reading and adopt Resolution 04-05. Mr. Hissong seconded the motion. All concurred and Resolution 04-05 was adopted.
4. ONE READING
- 04 - 06 - A RESOLUTION SUPPORTING A PROPOSED FIRE/EMS
said that this was a resolution for the support of the fire levy
but he said that in Section 2 of the resolution, the term "replacement"
levy was used and it should be corrected to "additional"
Mr. Beyer moved to have the one and only reading and adopt Resolution 04-06 as amended. Mr. O'Callaghan seconded the motion. All concurred and Resolution 04-06 was adopted.
5. Open Agenda
Mayor Packard said he had received a few questions on motorcycles and motor scooters in town.
Chief Blackwell said they were trying to enforce the regulations which are that motorcycles and motor scooter must be licensed and registered and that the definition of motor scooters was being changed in the Ohio Revised Code. In addition, people that operate motor scooters need to have a license and motor scooters need to be driven on the street and obey traffic laws. Chief Blackwell said that they were trying to warn kids first and notify their parents that they are operating motorcycles and motor scooters illegally.
Mrs. Goudy said that without the passage of the police levy, they would be down to operating one cruiser in town and she said that this was a very serious matter and can not be taken lightly. She said Union had a fine police chief and staff and she asked everyone to consider the passage of the levy very seriously.
Mr. O'Callaghan said he had been driving around town looking for nominees for the Spirit of Union award. He said he had seen many properties where people were doing a very good job but also some properties where people were not maintaining their yards. He asked that people be sure to keep their grass mowed.
Mr. Hissong and Mayor Packard talked about setting up a public meeting, to be held at Union Elementary to discuss the police and fire levy and answer any public questions. They asked about setting up dates and Chief Blackwell said they were discussing the program for the meetings and would set up dates closer to the election.
Mr. Hissong said the police and fire departments worked very hard and do a tremendous job. He said many people are unaware of how important they are until they are needed to come to their door.
Mr. Moore said he had some developments in some of the legal issues. The city had received two petitions to amend the city charter. The first one concerned Section 5.09 Public Information on Issues. This section states that the council has the power to appropriate and authorize the expenditure of public funds to provide information but one of the proposed changes are the words "without advocating it's position".
The second petition to amend the city charter is Section 2.06 Procedures, where annexations can not be passed as an emergency measure and no ordinance prescribing rates and charges by a public utility shall become effective until the city has obtained approval by a majority vote of the electors at a special or general election.
Mr. Moore said they had recently dealt with a similar issue with the same kind of restrictions and the city lost at the trial court level but when the case went before the Court of Appeals, it was determined that the city was right, and that the amendment was unconstitutional. Mr. Moore said Ronald Kidwell and Butler Township were now trying to take that case to the Supreme Court.
Mr. Moore said
since one of the petitions created a situation where the city
could not pass a rate increase without a public vote. Mr. Moore,
Currently, the Clerk of Council is reviewing the charter amendments. They are being examined to see if they comply with all of the regulations. Mr. Moore said they will also get a report back on the petitions from the outside counsel on whether this legislation can be placed on the ballot. Mr. Moore said he was hoping that they would have the information by the next council meeting.
Mr. Moore said that his legal conclusion was that if the charter amendment on utilities was passed, there would be damage to the city's ability to borrow funds in the future. He said that institutions would be unwilling to provide money to the city when they had that kind of limitations.
Mr. Bruns asked if there is anything like this anywhere in the state of Ohio. Mr. Moore said his impression from the bond counsel attorney was that there is not. Mr. Moore said this would have the effect of causing damage to the general fund which would eventually cause damage to other city services.
Mr. Applegate said, as an example, the city has to continually improve their systems as required by the Ohio EPA. If the city can not obtain the funds to finance the improvements, they would be in violation of the EPA laws which could really hurt the community.
In response to a question, Mr. Applegate said the petition was carried by a circulating committee of Roger Hansel, Charles Arnett, Sherri Rabius and Sharon Scott, not by Butler Township.
Police Chief Blackwell said the failure of the levy would not hurt the positions of City Manager or Police Chief, but would affect the citizens in the community.
Mr. Beyer asked if the council would be in favor of him writing a letter to the editors of the Dayton Daily News and Englewood Independent on the police and fire/ems levies. Mr. Beyer said that the same people attended the meetings each week and they need to get information out to more people and invite them to attend the council meetings if they had any questions. He said he would like the newspapers to send reporters to cover the Union council meetings.
In response to a question , Mr. Moore said that if the petitions for the charter amendments would go to the ballot, it would most likely be November of this year.
5. Mr. Beyer
moved that the council meeting be adjourned. Mr. O'Callaghan
The June 14, 2004 City of Union council meeting was called to order by Mayor Packard. Attendance was taken and the following council members were present: Mr. Bruns, Mrs. Terry, Mr. Hissong, Mayor Packard, Mr. O'Callaghan, Mrs. Goudy and Mr. Beyer. Mrs. Goudy was not present during roll call but arrived during the citizens and visitor's comments portion of the meeting.
Other city staff members present were Denise Winemiller, Clerk of Council and Joe Moore, Law Director.
Mayor Packard called for a moment of silence.
Packard asked if there were any corrections or comments on the
minutes from the May 24, 2004 council meeting. There were none
so Mr. Bruns moved that the minutes be accepted as prepared.
Mr. Beyer seconded the motion. Mrs. Goudy was not present when
the motion was made. Mrs. Terry
2. Mayor Packard asked if there were any comments from the citizens and visitors in the audience.
Mr. Bechtel from 138 McCraw was present and wanted to address the council on residents that parked their vehicles in their driveway, across the sidewalk. Mr. Bechtel said that his children used to get tickets in the late 70's and early 80's for parking over the sidewalk. He said in his neighborhood someone is doing that and bicycles and pedestrians have to go out into the street to get around the vehicle. Mayor Packard said they were not supposed to park in that manner and the city did have an ordinance against that. Mayor Packard offered to bring the matter to the attention of the police chief.Mrs. Winemiller said many people park like that without realizing the danger that they cause and that it is a safety issue. She said they will address that in a future newsletter. Mayor Packard added he would have the police check it out.
Mr. Beyer noted that Mrs. Goudy had arrived and had taken her seat on the council.
READING - ORDINANCE 1317 - AN ORDINANCE AMENDING THE TITLE OF
explained that the Secretary of State had requested a change
in the ballot language of Ordinance 1316. They wanted the police
"levy fund" changed to police "department".
Mrs. Winemiller said she also wanted to state for the record that they had passed the same ordinance previously and it had always been accepted before. To get the amended ordinance on the August ballot, they would need to pass 1317 as an emergency.
Mayor Packard moved that Ordinance 1317 be declared an emergency for the reasons set forth in the Ordinance. Mr. Bruns seconded the motion. All concurred and the motion was passed.
Mayor Packard then moved to have the one and only reading and adopt emergency Ordinance 1317. Mr. O'Callaghan seconded the motion. All concurred and emergency Ordinance 1317 was adopted.
READING - ORDINANCE 1318 - AN ORDINANCE PROVIDING FOR THE
said this would authorize the city to borrow $100,000 to work
on the Merrymaid storm sewer which is an Issue 2 project. The
total cost will be roughly $237,000 and the city's share is
$100,000. The city will go out for bids in July and August and
award the contract in September. The work will not start until
October, or late fall. This is Phase 3 of the storm sewer improvement
Mr. Bruns moved to have the first reading of Ordinance 1318. Mayor Packard seconded the motion. All concurred and Ordinance 1318 was passed to the second reading.
5. Open Agenda
Mayor Packard expressed his concerns for the kids out on the road, not being careful of traffic. He said he was concerned that there were not more police on duty and patrolling the streets. He added that he hoped that people understood the importance of passing the police levy.
Mr. Beyer said he would have letters expressing the council's support for the police and fire levies ready by the July meeting for the council to sign. These letters will be submitted to the local newspapers.
Mrs. Goudy apologized for being late to the meeting.
Mr. O'Callaghan said they awarded the Spirit of Union award to Levon and James Austin at 432 Applegate Road for having a beautiful home with nice landscaping and flowers blooming. He said they had done a lot of hard work on their property. Mr. O'Callaghan added that the city appreciated their efforts.
Mr. Hissong said he wanted to thank the employees that were keeping up with the mowing and keeping the trash picked up. He said they were doing an outstanding job.
Mr. Hissong said in reference to what the Mayor was commenting on, there was someone on a motorcycle running up and down the street in front of their house for forty-five minutes. He also commented about people speeding.
Mrs. Winemiller asked if they had called the police on the motorcycle. Mr. Hissong said they had called and the person had already been reported by someone further up the street. Mr. Hissong said you could hear the motorcycle from Shaw Road down to the other end of Martindale Road.
Mrs. Terry said she wanted to compliment the citizens because the yards and everything looked beautiful. She asked if the city had an ordinance that prohibits dogs from running loose. The city does have an ordinance concerning that. Mrs. Terry said she would try to handle it herself or contact the city if she needs help. Mr. Hissong suggested they put that information in a city newsletter.
Mr. Bruns said the next meeting would be June 28 and they would be skipping the second meetings in July and August.
Mr. Beyer said that it was his understanding that Chief Blackwell had a contract on a home in the City of Union. He said Mr. Hissong had reported that a few people had asked him about that but the house is almost completed and the Chief should be moving in shortly.
Mr. Moore said that the Supreme Court came out about the "under God" phrase in the pledge of allegiance. It dealt with the concept called "standing" which deals with the right the party has to have to bring a lawsuit. In that particular case, the mother has custody of the child so she has the right to make the decisions in regard to that child. The Supreme Court decided that there was no standing by the father to bring that action. "Standing" was referred to as a technicality in the newspapers but Mr. Moore said standing is an issue in every case. Even in some of the city's litigation, they have asked if the person has "standing" to bring the lawsuit, which is the right to bring the lawsuit in a particular issue. Mr. Moore said the concept of "standing" was not a technicality but a legal issue present in every case.
6. Mr. Beyer moved that the council meeting be adjourned. Mayor Packard seconded the motion. All concurred and the council meeting was adjourned.
The council meeting was called to order by Mayor Robert Packard on June 28, 2004, Monday evening at 7:30 p.m.
Attendance was taken and the following council members were at the meeting: Mr. Bruns, Mr. Hissong, Mayor Packard, and Mr. Beyer. Other city staff members present were John P. Applegate, City Manager, Denise Winemiller, Clerk of Council, Joe Moore, Law Director, and Mike Blackwell, Police Chief.
Mayor Packard said that Mrs. Goudy had called and had a death in the family so Mayor Packard moved to excuse Mrs. Goudy. Mr. Beyer seconded the motion. All concurred and Mrs. Goudy was excused.
Mayor Packard said that Mr. O'Callaghan was on vacation so he moved that he be excused. Mr. Beyer said that they had cancelled the second council meeting in July and August for vacations. Mr. Bruns said he felt that being on vacation should not be an excused absence even though he has been excused for that reason in the past. There was no second on the motion so Mr. O'Callaghan's absence was not excused.
Mrs. Terry had not called so her absence was not excused.
Mayor Packard called for a moment of silence.
1. Mayor Packard asked if there were any additions or corrections on the council minutes from the June 14, 2004 meeting. There were none so Mr. Bruns moved that the council minutes be accepted as prepared. Mr. Hissong seconded the motion. All concurred and the minutes were accepted.
2. Mayor Packard asked if there were any comments from the citizens and visitors in the audience.
There was a request from Judy Collins, 409 West Martindale, who wanted to address the council on flying the American flag.Mrs. Collins talked about an article in the Smithsonian magazine about finding part of the first American flag. They have also documented when the fifteenth star was added to the flag. She said June 14 was flag day and Mrs. Collins went over some of the regulations concerning flags.
Mayor Packard recognized David Hack, and Jackie Call, from the VFW Post 5434 and Chief Blackwell. Mr. Hack said he was not a politician but he didn't understand why people who were registered to vote, would not vote for a levy for police and fire services, because it would be for their safety and protection. He said he knew it was hard for the police chief to ask for funding and the VFW Post 5434 was presenting a check for $300.00 to go towards the police department. The Ladies Auxiliary also presented the police a check for $300.00. Mr. Hack and Ms. Call said they appreciate everything that the police department does. Chief Blackwell thanked the VFW and Ladies Auxiliary for their generous donations to the police department.
Mayor Packard thanked the VFW for all of their support in the community and support of the veterans. He said he was glad they had a place like that in Union for the veterans.
3. SECOND READING - ORDINANCE 1318 - AN ORDINANCE PROVIDING FOR THE ISSUANCE OF $100,000 MERRYMAID STORM WATER SEWER SYSTEM IMPROVEMENT BOND ANTICIPATION NOTES BY THE CITY OF UNION, OHIO, IN ANTICIPATION OF THE ISSUANCE OF BONDS, FOR THE PURPOSE OF PAYING THE COST OF IMPROVING THE CITY'S STORM WATER SEWER SYSTEM BY REPLACING EXISTING CORRODED METAL PIPES AND OTHER CORRODED FIXTURES. (three readings)
said he had read the minutes from the last meeting because he
had been on vacation at that time. He said he wanted to clarify
for the record that the document that Mrs. Winemiller had referred
to had only mentioned one number. The actual grant was for $237,000.00
from Issue II. The city's portion is $79,000 so the total amount
for the project is $316,000.00. This project is the third phase
of a major replacement of a storm sewer which serves 40 to 45
percent of the storm sewer system in the city, replacing corroded
corrugated metal pipe with box culverts.
Mayor Packard moved to have the second reading of Ordinance 1318. Mr. Beyer seconded the motion. All concurred and Ordinance 1318 was passed to the third reading.
4. ONE READING - ORDINANCE 1319 - AN ORDINANCE ADOPTING A STATEMENT INDICATING THE SERVICES THE CITY OF UNION, WILL PROVIDE TO THE 79.840 ACRE TERRITORY PROPOSED TO BE ANNEXED FROM BUTLER TOWNSHIP, MONTGOMERY COUNTY TO THE CITY OF UNION AND BUFFER REQUIREMENTS THE CITY WILL ENFORCE AS PROVIDED BY OHIO REVISED CODE SECTION 709.023 AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY.
Since there were not enough council members present for a majority vote to pass this ordinance, Mayor Packard moved that Ordinance 1319 be tabled to the next meeting. Mr. Bruns seconded the motion. All concurred and Ordinance 1319 was tabled.
5. ONE READING - RESOLUTION 04-07 - A RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A VOLUNTARY RETIREMENT INCENTIVE PLAN IN COOPERATION WITH THE PUBLIC EMPLOYEES RETIREMENT SYSTEM OF OHIO FOR ELIGIBLE EMPLOYEES OF THE DEPARTMENT OF SERVICE, WHICH IS BEING DESIGNATED AS A SUBORDINATE EMPLOYING UNIT OF THE CITY OF UNION.
Mr. Applegate said when a previous employee, Bill Maxwell had retired, the city had passed this ordinance to give him the twenty-five year package, and had bought one year. Mr. Joe Dickey is retiring on October 1, and in looking at the budget, it is possible to offer this for him so Mr. Applegate recommended they pass this resolution. It amounts to roughly $5,800.00. Mr. Beyer asked if the resolution for Mr. Maxwell would still be in effect. Mr. Applegate said it was an option that was only good for one year.
Mr. Beyer moved to have the one and only reading and adopt Resolution 04-07. Mr. Bruns seconded the motion. All concurred and Resolution 04-07 was adopted.
6. Adoption by motion of the F/Y 2005 asking budget.
Mr. Beyer said the copy of the budget was provided to the council on Friday, June 25th, along with the council packets. He said the budget is very tight, especially with the police and fire departments. He mentioned the blue lights and red ribbon programs in which the people can participate to show their support.
He said that the budget committee had met and no citizens had attended the public hearing. The budget has been approved by the budget committee and has been available for review by the council. Mr. Beyer said the budget committee recommends that the budget be adopted.
said that he wanted to make an additional comment. They have
been discussing how possible cuts in the local government funds
will affect the city. The city could potentially lose $130,000.00.
Currently the state is planning on doing away with that or reducing
the funds in some way. The Montgomery County Mayors and Managers
Association is fighting this as well as other organizations.
These cuts would affect cities, villages, townships, libraries,
etc. The state has a 1.7 billion short fall in their funds so
Mr. Applegate said this is how they will regain funding. Mr.
Applegate said he and Mayor Packard had attended a meeting organized
by the Montgomery County Mayors and Managers concerning this
and the state representatives were invited also but only Tom
Roberts and the administrative assistant to Arlene Setzer attended.
This money makes up about twenty percent of the city's budget.
Mr. Beyer said local government fund money was put in the General
Fund and could be transferred to other funds if needed. Otherwise,
what is in the individual funds must stay in that fund, like
the water funds must be used
Mr. Beyer moved to adopt the F/Y 2005 asking budget Mayor Packard seconded the motion. All concurred and the F/Y 2005 asking budget was adopted.
7. Open Agenda
Mayor Packard mentioned the police "blue light" promotion for the police levy and asked people to get out and vote in the special election in August.
Mr. Beyer said there were two letters going around for signatures from the council members asking that newspapers cover the city council meetings, one for the Dayton Daily News and one for the Englewood Independent. He asked that everyone sign it and that Mrs. Winemiller contact the other council members and have them sign the letters.
Mr. Beyer commented that there would be paving on his street. He asked when it would start and how long it would be before they would be able to park on the street. Mr. Applegate said they would be starting at 8:00 a.m. and they should not park on the streets for a couple of days because the crews would come back to do the final course of asphalt. Mr. Applegate said it was okay to drive on the base course but they would not want anyone to drive on the finished application before it was ready.
Mr. Hissong said he thought the city crews were doing a tremendous job on the mowing. Mr. Hissong also thanked the representatives from VFW Post 5434. He said they always come through for the city.
Mr. Bruns also thanked the VFW for their donation to the police department.
Mr. Bruns said he wanted to comment on their actions in excusing some council members and not excusing others. He added that one person did not even notify the city and the other person was on a legitimate vacation. He said he personally was not excusing people for things like vacations. He said they all choose to be on council and he thought they should attend the meetings. Mr. Bruns said it was unfortunate that it was Mr. O'Callaghan that they did not excuse because Mr. O'Callaghan missed maybe only one meeting a year. Mr. Bruns said he hoped the next time he missed a meeting for vacation, he would not be excused.
Mr. Beyer said he had no problem if someone misses a meeting for either work or even a vacation. He said he had not been in favor of canceling the second meetings in July and August because that creates a big hole in those two months. He said if they were having second meetings in July and August, he would have voted to excuse Mr. O'Callaghan.
Mr. Bruns said they have gotten into the habit of making any absence an excused absence. Mr. Beyer said he felt it was more for sickness or a death in the family, work out of town, and being in the hospital
Mayor Packard said he did not agree with not excusing Mr. O'Callaghan because Mr. O'Callaghan was being penalized for not taking a vacation when the city thought he should.
Mr. Applegate said they were going out for bids for resurfacing Phillipsburg-Union Road. Montgomery County was holding permissive tax funds that can only be used on approved county permissive tax projects such as Martindale, State Route 48, Phillipsburg-Union, Old Springfield, etc. They will be resurfacing from the cemetery to Irongate Estates.
Mr. Applegate said the Stoneycrest lift station is working great.
Mrs. Winemiller said that as Clerk of Council, she had reviewed the charter amendment petitions submitted by Ron Kidwell and verified that they do contain valid signatures necessary to meet the requirement of 160 signatures per petition. She is validating that they are valid petitions for two separate charter amendments. Petition 2.06, Procedures, had 174 signatures and Petition 5.09 had 192 valid signatures. Ten percent of the registered voters that voted in the last general election or 160 signatures are required. Mrs. Winemiller presented the petitions to Mr. Moore and asked him to explain what the council was required to do.
Mr. Moore said both charter amendments have unique questions in them.
The first one, Section 2.06 Procedures states, " NO ORDINANCE PRESCRIBING RATES AND CHARGES BY A PUBLIC UTILITY SHALL BECOME EFFECTIVE UNTIL THE CITY HAS OBTAINED APPROVAL BY A MAJORITY VOTE OF THE ELECTORS AT A SPECIAL OR GENERAL ELECTION."
Mr. Moore said
he was not an expert on utility rates and finances or bond counsel
so he consulted outside attorneys to determine the impact this
would have on city finances in the future and also, whether this
could be done by charter amendment. So when this petition came
in, he decided to consult
The second one, 5.09, states: "The Council shall have the power to appropriate and authorize the expenditure of public funds to provide information, WITHOUT ADVOCATING ITS POSITION " and continues to discuss tax and non tax issues.
Mr. Moore said currently the city is in litigation with spending issues and the spending of tax payer dollars on issues so he consulted with outside counsel on that issue also. They had decided to have the charter amendment petitions reviewed by the Clerk of Council, also reviewing information from the Board of Elections.
Since Mrs. Winemiller determined that there were sufficient signatures to place these on the ballot, the council would need to pass an ordinance authorizing the charter amendments to be placed on the ballot and the council has the option to choose a special election or the November general election. These types of charter amendments can go to the electorate but the council has to authorize the preparation of the legislation. Mr. Moore said it was the outside counsel's advice to place these charter amendments on the ballot.
Mr. Beyer asked if the first charter amendment was passed, and the city would never be able to pass a water and sewer increase, if they would have to put the increase on the property taxes. Mr. Applegate said that is correct.
Mr. Applegate said the current charter does not allow the city to pass any legislation on rates within one reading for water, sewer, bond issues, etc. It has to go through three readings the first time. The passage of this amendment could potentially put the city in violation of federal, Ohio EPA regulations, etc. that the city is required to do. Mr. Applegate said he is not sure of the purpose behind this charter amendment. Union would be the only city in the state of Ohio that would have this kind of restriction. Out of sixty-seven communities surveyed for water and sewer rates, Union is the eleventh cheapest. He said the ramifications could be serious, especially if the city had to respond to an emergency. To place fees on the property taxes, where there would only be one or two people residing there, or the elderly could be a potential hardship.
Mr. Beyer said
the whole purpose of these proposed charter amendments is just
to harass the city. Mr. Applegate said the council will have
no less than 60 nor more than 120 days to put this on the ballot
and the November election fits that requirement. Mr. Moore said
they would have the first reading and then could go through the
second and third reading as the normal process, but after the
first reading they could forward it to the Board of Elections.
Mr. Applegate said charter amendments are governed by the
The staff needs to have this legislation authorized to be placed on the next agenda.
Mr. Beyer moved
that the council authorize the staff and the law director to
prepare the necessary legislation in two ways, one to be passed
through three readings and one to be passed as an emergency for
the November election. Mr. Bruns seconded the motion. All concurred
and the motion was
8. Mr. Beyer
moved that the June 28, 2004 council meeting be adjourned. Mayor
Packard seconded the motion. All concurred and the council meeting