City Commission Packet 11-24-2009

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   CITY OF MUSKEGON
      CITY COMMISSION MEETING
                         NOVEMBER 24, 2009
 CITY COMMISSION CHAMBERS @ 5:30 P.M.
                                            AGENDA

CALL TO ORDER:
PRAYER:
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE:
ROLL CALL:
HONORS AND AWARDS:
INTRODUCTIONS/PRESENTATION:
CONSENT AGENDA:
    A. Approval of Minutes. CITY CLERK
    B. Amendment to the Zoning Ordinance – Modify “Exempt Signs”.
       PLANNING & ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
    C. Amendment to the Zoning Ordinance – Article II, Definitions.
       PLANNING & ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
    D. Towing Contract. PUBLIC SAFETY
PUBLIC HEARINGS:
COMMUNICATIONS:
CITY MANAGER’S REPORT:
UNFINISHED BUSINESS:
NEW BUSINESS:
    A. Moratorium on Fees for 2010 Vacant Buildings.                                          PLANNING &
       ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
ANY OTHER BUSINESS:
PUBLIC PARTICIPATION:
Reminder: Individuals who would like to address the City Commission shall do the following:
Fill out a request to speak form attached to the agenda or located in the back of the room.
 Submit the form to the City Clerk.
Be recognized by the Chair.
Step forward to the microphone.
   State name and address.
   Limit of 3 minutes to address the Commission.
   (Speaker representing a group may be allowed 10 minutes if previously registered with City Clerk.)

   CLOSED SESSION:
   ADJOURNMENT:
ADA POLICY: The City of Muskegon will provide necessary auxiliary aids and services to individuals who
want to attend the meeting upon twenty four hour notice to the City of Muskegon. Please contact Ann
Marie Becker, City Clerk, 933 Terrace Street, Muskegon, MI 49440 or by calling (231) 724-6705 or TDD:
(231) 724-4172.
Date:     November 24, 2009
To:       Honorable Mayor and City Commissioners
From:     Ann Marie Becker, City Clerk
RE:       Approval of Minutes




SUMMARY OF REQUEST: To approve minutes for the November 9th
Commission Worksession, and the November 10th Regular Commission
Meeting.


FINANCIAL IMPACT: None.


BUDGET ACTION REQUIRED: None.


STAFF RECOMMENDATION: Approval of the minutes.
                                      City of Muskegon
                                City Commission Worksession
                                      November 9, 2009
                                 City Commission Chambers
                                           5:30 PM

                                         MINUTES

2009-93
Present: Commissioners Carter, Wierengo, Wisneski, Gawron, and Spataro.
Absent: Commissioners Warmington and Shepherd.

Laketon Township Intergovernmental Sewer System Maintenance Agreement.
Robert Kuhn, Public Works Director, gave an overview of the proposed Laketon Township
Intergovernmental Sewer System Maintenance Agreement that the Commission will consider at
its November 10, 2009 meeting.

Marsh Field Operations and Maintenance Proposal – Lakeshore Baseball Club.
Robert Kuhn, Public Works Director, presented a proposed management agreement for the
Marsh Field baseball facility with Lakeshore Baseball Club. The proposed agreement is for
three years with an option to extend the agreement. The City Attorney is currently reviewing the
agreement.

Vacant Building Issue.
Mike Cameron, Planning Department, gave an update of the Vacant Building Ordinance. The
ordinance has been changed since its original adoption to accommodate specific needs and
situations that have come to light. Mr. Cameron cited some examples in which the ordinance has
been proved effective.

Engineering Services to Muskegon Heights.
The City of Muskegon proposes to offer engineering services to Muskegon Heights for a road
project from Sherman to Harvey on Getty Street.

Adjournment
Motion by Commissioner Wisneski, seconded by Commissioner Wierengo to adjourn at
6:35 p.m.

                                                                          MOTION PASSES



                                                           ________________________
                                                            Ann Marie Becker, MMC
                                                                 City Clerk
     CITY OF MUSKEGON
       CITY COMMISSION MEETING
                   NOVEMBER 10, 2009
    CITY COMMISSION CHAMBERS @ 5:30 P.M.
                                MINUTES
   The Regular Commission Meeting of the City of Muskegon was held at City
Hall, 933 Terrace Street, Muskegon, Michigan at 5:30 p.m., Tuesday, November
10, 2009.
    Vice Mayor Gawron opened the meeting with a prayer from Commissioner
Spataro after which the Commission and public recited the Pledge of
Allegiance to the Flag.
ROLL CALL FOR THE REGULAR COMMISSION MEETING:
   Present: Vice Mayor Stephen Gawron, Commissioners Chris Carter,
Lawrence Spataro, Sue Wierengo, Steve Wisneski, City Manager Bryon Mazade,
City Attorney John Schrier, and City Clerk Ann Marie Becker.
   Absent: Mayor Stephen Warmington and Commissioner Clara Shepherd
(both excused).
2009-94 CONSENT AGENDA:
     A. Approval of Minutes. CITY CLERK
SUMMARY OF REQUEST: To approve the minutes of the Regular Commission
Meeting that was held on Tuesday, October 27, 2009.
FINANCIAL IMPACT: None.
BUDGET ACTION REQUIRED: None.
STAFF RECOMMENDATION: Approval of the minutes.
     B. Clean Indoor Air Regulation Policy. CIVIL SERVICE
SUMMARY OF REQUEST: Pursuant to the Muskegon County Clean Indoor Air
Regulation, the City is required to adopt a policy prohibiting smoking in all
enclosed worksites and public places as specified in Sections 1005-1007 of the
Regulation.
FINANCIAL IMPACT: Minimal.
BUDGET ACTION REQUIRED:      None.   Required signage purchased from 2009
budget allocation.
STAFF RECOMMENDATION: Staff respectfully requests City Commission approval
of the Clean Indoor Air Regulation Policy proposal.
      C. Water Rate Adjustments. FINANCE
SUMMARY OF REQUEST: The City intends to hold residential/commercial water
commodity charges at current levels for 2010. However, staff is recommending
the following minor changes to the City’s water rate schedule to facilitate
operational issues, including implementation of monthly utility billing:
         •   Set the delinquent payment penalty to 0% for the period from
             December 1, 2009 until April 1, 2010 to allow citizens to become
             familiar with the monthly billing cycle;
         •   Establish credits of $0.75 (each) for participation in the City’s eBill
             and/or Autopay programs.         Customers participating in both
             programs will save $18/year;
         •   Put into resolution form the longstanding practice of billing non-
             resident water users not covered by separate agreement at two
             times the City’s water rate.
FINANCIAL IMPACT:      The proposed water rate adjustments will facilitate
implementation of monthly billing and facilitate the streamlining of operations
by encouraging participation in cost-effective billing and payment programs.
BUDGET ACTION REQUIRED: None at this time.
STAFF RECOMMENDATION: Adoption of the fee adjustment resolution.
      D. Consideration of 2010 COLA for Retirees. FINANCE
SUMMARY OF REQUEST: It is time to consider whether an annual cost of living
adjustment (COLA) should be awarded to City retirees. Under the City’s COLA
program, permanent cost of living increases are made to pensioners retired five
years or more. COLA payments are capped at 75% of the CPI and are payable
only when investment performance exceeds estimates and the COLA is
deemed affordable. In 2009, a 0.50% COLA was granted.
The collapse of the financial markets in late 2008 took a big toll on the City’s
pension funds as noted in the most recent actuarial valuation:
      “The dramatic price declines across the world financial markets in
      2008 led to volatility unlike any experienced in decades. 2009 has
      continued to be only somewhat less volatile….If the December 31,
      2008 valuation results were based on market value on that date
      instead of 10-year smoothed funding value: i) the funded percent
      of your entire municipality would be 72% (instead of 100%); and ii)
      your total employer contribution requirement for the fiscal year
      starting January 1, 2010 would be $4,427,460 (instead of $1,084,944).
      If the investment markets do not turn around, employer contribution
      requirements can be expected to rise. MERS is doing everything it
      can to make sure that if this proves to be the case, the increases
      are incremental as opposed to steep.”
Given the unprecedented economic and investment environment we are in
and the severe market losses suffered by the City’s pension funds, staff is
recommending no retiree COLA be awarded for the year beginning January 1,
2010.
FINANCIAL IMPACT: None.
BUDGET ACTION REQUIRED: None at this time.
STAFF RECOMMENDATION:           Commission    action      affirming     staff’s
recommendation that no COLA increase be granted to City retirees in 2010.
      E. Control System Annual Software Support. WATER FILTRATION
SUMMARY OF REQUEST: Renewal of the annual customer support for the
Wonderware control system software at the Water Filtration Plant.
FINANCIAL IMPACT: A one-time cost of $9,946.76.
BUDGET ACTION REQUIRED: None. This item is budgeted.
STAFF RECOMMENDATION: Staff requests authorization to renew the annual
software customer support agreement at a cost of $9,946.76 for 2010.
      F. Request to Deny Acceptance of Three Vacant Lots that were not Sold
         During the Tax Sale for 2009. PLANNING & ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
SUMMARY OF REQUEST: The County of Muskegon held two delinquent tax
auctions during 2009. There were three properties left after the last auction.
According to the State’s new tax laws, the City must state that they are not
interested in obtaining them, otherwise the City will automatically receive them.
From the list that was provided, all three parcels are vacant non buildable lots.
FINANCIAL IMPACT: None.
BUDGET ACTION REQUIRED: None.
STAFF RECOMMENDATION: To deny acceptance of the three vacant lots and
authorize both the Mayor and the Clerk to sign said resolution.
COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATION:         The Land Reutilization Committee
recommended not to accept the properties at their meeting of October 27,
2009.
      G. Request for Encroachment Agreement for 1983 Lakeshore Drive –
         Marine Tap Room, Inc. ENGINEERING
SUMMARY OF REQUEST: Marine Tap Room, Inc. has submitted an encroachment
agreement form requesting your permission to place a sign on their property
which will extend over public sidewalk.
FINANCIAL IMPACT: None.
BUDGET ACTION REQUIRED: None.
STAFF RECOMMENDATION: To approve the encroachment agreement with the
supplemental conditions.
      H. Engineering Services to Muskegon Heights. ENGINEERING
SUMMARY OF REQUEST: Authorize staff to negotiate an engineering services
agreement with Muskegon Heights to survey, design and provide construction
oversight for the reconstruction of Getty Street.
Furthermore, should the City Manager and Attorney find the agreement
acceptable; the Manager be authorized to execute said agreement.
FINANCIAL IMPACT: None at this time.
BUDGET ACTION REQUIRED: None.
STAFF RECOMMENDATION:          Authorize staff to negotiate and execute the
agreement.
      I. Revocation of Industrial Facilities Tax Exemption Certificate for RC
         Productions. PLANNING & ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
SUMMARY OF REQUEST: Pursuant to Public Act 198 of 1974, as amended, the
City of Muskegon requests that the Industrial Facilities Tax Exemption Certificate
(number 99-700) for RC Productions at 1756 Lakeshore Drive be revoked. The
industrial activity for which the certificate was granted is no longer in production
at this location.
FINANCIAL IMPACT: The business will now be charged the full tax rate.
BUDGET ACTION REQUIRED: None.
STAFF RECOMMENDATION: Staff recommends revocation of the IFT.
      J. Appointment to the District Library Board. CITY CLERK
SUMMARY OF REQUEST:        To appoint Clayton Hardiman to the District Library
Board.
FINANCIAL IMPACT: None.
BUDGET ACTION REQUIRED: None.
STAFF RECOMMENDATION: Approval.
COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATION:         The Community Relations               Committee
recommended this appointment at their November 9th meeting.
Motion by Commissioner Carter, second by Commissioner Wierengo to approve
the Consent Agenda as read.
ROLL VOTE: Ayes: Gawron, Spataro, Wierengo, Wisneski, and Carter
            Nays: None
MOTION PASSES
2009-95 NEW BUSINESS:
      A. Laketon Township Intergovernmental Sewer System Maintenance
         Agreement. PUBLIC WORKS
SUMMARY OF REQUEST: Approve the agreement between Laketon Township
and the City of Muskegon DPW to enter into a Sewer System Operation and
Maintenance Agreement.
FINANCIAL IMPACT: None.
BUDGET ACTION REQUIRED: None.
STAFF RECOMMENDATION: To approve the agreement and authorize the Mayor
and Clerk to sign.
Motion by Commissioner Carter, second by Commissioner Spataro to approve
the Laketon Township Intergovernmental Sewer System Maintenance
Agreement.
ROLL VOTE: Ayes: Spataro, Wierengo, Wisneski, Carter, and Gawron
            Nays: None
MOTION PASSES
      B. Madison Street Fire Station      Purchase    Request.     PLANNING     &
         ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
SUMMARY OF REQUEST: Jon Ritz, of Ritz Properties, is offering a bid of $10,000 for
the fire station that is for sale at 1774 Madison Street. The building would be
used to start a new business, Muskegon Handiman Services, LLC. The company
would offer small scale handyman services and would employee up to three
people. Ritz Properties was approved for a special use permit for the property
during the October Planning Commission meeting, contingent upon purchase
of the building.
FINANCIAL IMPACT: Purchase price of $10,000; $635 annually from income tax
of three jobs; $620 annually from property taxes.
BUDGET ACTION REQUIRED: None.
STAFF RECOMMENDATION: Approval of the sale of the building.
Motion by Commissioner Spataro, second by Commissioner Wierengo to
approve the sale of the Madison Street Fire Station as requested.
ROLL VOTE: Ayes: Spataro, Wierengo, Wisneski, Carter, and Gawron
            Nays: None
MOTION PASSES
      C. Acquisition of Property for a Right Turn Radius through Eminent Domain
         Portion of 1813 S. Getty Street. PLANNING & ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
SUMMARY OF REQUEST: The City had sent a letter to Samei Btk, owner of 1813 S.
Getty on July 14, 2009, with an offer of $500 to purchase a small corner of the
parking area of the property. He declined the offer. The County Equalization
Department has placed a value on the portion that the City would need to
obtain and that amount is $758.44. Staff sent a second letter on October 23,
2009 with an offer of $758.44. The owner has not accepted nor made a counter
offer. It is necessary to begin eminent domain proceedings in order to acquire
the property.
FINANCIAL IMPACT: The sum of $1,000 will need to be placed with the County
Treasurer’s Office to show that the funds are segregated.
BUDGET ACTION REQUIRED:        To allow payment of $1,000 from the Public
Improvement Fund.
STAFF RECOMMENDATION: To approve the resolution and to authorize both the
Mayor and the Clerk to sign said resolution and Declaration of Taking with the
City Engineer to sign the Affidavit of Deposit.
Motion by Commissioner Spataro, second by Commissioner Carter to approve
the acquisition of property for a right turn radius through Eminent Domain for a
portion of 1813 S. Getty Street.
ROLL VOTE: Ayes: Wierengo, Wisneski, Carter, Gawron, and Spataro
            Nays: None
MOTION PASSES
ADJOURNMENT: The City Commission Meeting adjourned at 5:43 p.m.


                                           Respectfully submitted,




                                           Ann Marie Becker, MMC
                                           City Clerk
                            CITY COMMISSION MEETING
                             Thursday, November 19, 2009




TO:            Honorable Mayor and City Commissioners

FROM:          Anthony L. Kleibecker

DATE:          November 24, 2009

SUBJECT:       Towing Contract

SUMMARY OF REQUEST:

Public Safety staff requests that the Commission extend the current towing agreement
with Campbell Towing, 2462 Getty Street through October 31, 2010. This extension was
provided for in the original agreement that was authorized in January of this year.


FINANICAL IMPACT:

None

BUDGET ACTION REQUIRED:

None.

STAFF RECOMMENDATION:

Approval of this request.
        Commission Meeting Date: November 23, 2009




Date:       November 17, 2009
To:         Honorable Mayor & City Commission
From:       Planning & Economic Development Department
RE:         Moratorium on fees for 2010 Vacant Buildings


SUMMARY OF REQUEST: Request to approve a moratorium on fee’s
charged to owners of vacant buildings that are entering their second
years billing cycle in 2010. Eligibility for the moratorium of fee would be
determined based on certain criteria included on the attached staff
memo.


FINANCIAL IMPACT: Exact amount unknown but should be minimal.


BUDGET ACTION REQUIRED: None


STAFF RECOMMENDATION: Staff recommends approval of a fee
moratorium for vacant building invoices meeting the approved criteria.


COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATION: None
                                                                      Planning Department




Memo
     To:      Honorable Mayor and City Commission

     Cc:      Bryon Mazade, City Manager
     From:    Mike Cameron
     Date:    November 10, 2009
     Re:      Vacant Building Registration Moratorium



     Staff believes a billing moratorium, with conditions, could be initiated for the year of 2010.This
     would only impact the structures that are about to enter their second vacant building billing
     cycle in 2010. Additionally, this moratorium would apply only to structures that meet certain
     criteria. The criteria used would help insure that the structure is being properly maintained
     and the owners are current on all their responsibilities to the various city departments.

     The criteria staff feels a vacant building would have to meet to qualify for a moratorium of fee
     are:

1.       All taxes & fees, such as property taxes, mowing charges, past vacant building registration fees,
         landlord registrations, business registrations and any other applicable fees, must be fully paid and
         current.
2.       All city supplied utilities for the property must be fully paid.
3.       There are no environmental letters sent to the address or work performed at the address in the
         vacancy years in question.
4.       The building owner can demonstrate that they have made recent investments in the vacant building
         during the vacancy period or in the case of a building in good condition, they have continued to
         provide the necessary financial support for the building to be in usable and move-in condition.
5.       The property has been listed for sale with a professional realty firm during the past vacancy period
         and is currently listed for sale with a professional realty firm.

     Due to the complexities of the overall program, city staff would utilize our current appeal
     process to administer the moratorium and the owners that feel they qualify would be required
     to apply for the moratorium within thirty days after receiving an invoice. To make the public
     aware of this opportunity, we would mail a notice to each qualified building owner informing
     them of the moratorium and its requirements to qualify. If the owner felt they could meet the
     criteria, they would apply, with any necessary supporting documentation. If they do not meet
     the criteria we would hope they would not apply for it and consume staff time with the
     reviews.

     Because of the criteria that must be met and the large number of structures that we will be
     billing, staff would not be able to review all the invoices prior to billing. We simply do not
     know if all of the structures can meet the criteria and we do not have the staff to make those
     determinations in advance.



     1
Using the appeal process, staff can make the determination by requiring the owner to provide
some of the above listed information and this will cut down on staff time spent. Even so, this
will increase the amount of time staff must spend processing paperwork for this program. We
currently expect to process 202 cases that will fall into the second year criteria and this
number will continue to rise as inspectors find more vacant structures which have been
vacant for many years.




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