Agenda & Minutes

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City Council Meeting Agenda & Minutes

Minutes
Thursday, April 07, 2016

AGENDA
12:00 Noon
Medford City Hall, Council Chambers
411 West Eighth Street
Medford, Oregon

10.    Roll Call
 
Introduction of McLoughlin Middle School Students of the Month
 
20.    Approval or Correction of the Minutes of the March 17 Regular Meeting
 
30.    Oral Requests and Communications from the Audience
Comments will be limited to 3 minutes per individual or 5 minutes if representing a group or organization.  PLEASE SIGN IN.
 
40.    Consent Calendar
        
50.    Items Removed from Consent Calendar
 
60.    Ordinances and Resolutions
60.1     COUNCIL BILL 2016-27 Continued from March 3, 2016 - A resolution affirming the Public Works Director’s administrative decision requiring the repair of an unsafe sidewalk located at 117 S. Central Avenue.
 
60.2     COUNCIL BILL 2016-28 Continued from March 3, 2016 - A resolution affirming the Public Works Director’s administrative decision requiring the repair of an unsafe sidewalk located at 135 through 149 S. Central Avenue.
        
60.3     COUNCIL BILL 2016-29 Continued from March 3, 2016 - A resolution affirming the Public Works Director’s administrative decision requiring the repair of an unsafe sidewalk located at 125 S. Central Avenue.
 
60.4     COUNCIL BILL 2016-32 Continued from March 3, 2016 - A resolution approving referral to the electors of the City of Medford the question of imposing a three percent tax on the sale of marijuana items by a marijuana retailer within the City.
 
60.5     COUNCIL BILL 2016-33 Continued from March 3, 2016 - A resolution approving referral to the electors of the City of Medford the question of banning state‑licensed marijuana retailers within the City.
 
60.6     COUNCIL BILL 2016-44 An ordinance authorizing acceptance and expenditure of a grant in the amount of $4,000 from the Chaney Family Foundation for the purchase of satellite communication equipment and digital two-way radios for use in the Medford Emergency Management command vehicle.
 
60.7     COUNCIL BILL 2016-45 An ordinance amending sections 4.105, 4.710, 4.761, 4.763, 4.1111, 4.1200, 4.1202, 4.1203 and repealing sections 4.1003, and 4.1103 of the Medford Code pertaining to utility fees.
 
70.    Council Business
             
80.    City Manager and Other Staff Reports
         80.1     Further reports from City Manager
 
90.    Propositions and Remarks from the Mayor and Councilmembers
         90.1     Proclamations issued
 
         90.2     Further Council committee reports
           
         90.3     Further remarks from Mayor and Councilmembers
 
100.  Adjournment to the Evening Session
 
EVENING SESSION
7:00 P.M.
 
The evening meeting has been cancelled as there are no items for Council consideration.
 


MINUTES
12:00 Noon
Medford City Hall, Council Chambers
411 West Eighth Street
Medford, Oregon

 
The regular meeting of the Medford City Council was called to order at 12:08 p.m. in the Council Chambers of the Medford City Hall on the above date with the following members and staff present:
 
Mayor Gary Wheeler; Councilmembers Clay Bearnson, Daniel Bunn, Chris Corcoran, Dick Gordon, Tim Jackle, Eli Matthews, Kevin Stine, Michael Zarosinski
 
City Manager Pro Tem Bill Hoke; City Attorney Lori Cooper; Deputy City Recorder Winnie Shepard
 
Introduction of McLoughlin Middle School Students of the Month
McLoughlin Assistant Principal Rick Parsagian introduced the students of the month.
 
20.    Approval or correction of the minutes of the March 16, 2016 regular meeting
Councilmember Jackle requested clarification from Councilmember Bunn regarding his Travel Medford motion.  Mayor Wheeler recommended discussion regarding any possible revision later in the meeting.
 
         Approval of the March 16, 2016 minutes was postponed to allow Council discussion.
 
30.    Oral requests and communications from the audience
Mayor Wheeler addressed the audience and requested citizens speaking about items not on the agenda to wait until the end of the meeting. 
 
30.1     Scott Henselman, representing five buildings on Central Avenue, spoke regarding uneven sidewalks and trees along Central.  He noted that years ago when Medford Urban Renewal Agency first brought up the pavers, he spoke against them.   
 
Councilmember Stine asked how we should resolve this problem; Mr. Henselman responded that we can’t remove trees, but should deal with the fact that the concrete barriers are going to continue to raise.  Perhaps removing the pavers, shaving them, and replacing them with solid concrete or seal the existing pavers with slurry seal or mortar mix.
 
Councilmember Stine asked whether the property owners will be able to financially assist with this problem; Mr. Henselman responded that he hasn’t asked everyone, but believed most property owners would rather have sidewalks with the open pebble design because gum doesn’t stick and the finish blends into the décor.  The white square style shows dirt and stains and allows weeds to grow between the cracks. 
 
Mr. Henselman did not believe a different type of tree would solve the problem, because the problems were caused by compaction and the undermining of bricks due to the water running underneath.  Unless the water entry is eliminated, the problem will continue. 
 
30.2     Reed Murphy, R.A. Murphy Construction and owns a building at Sixth and Central, spoke regarding the sidewalk defects and believed the City should consider various solutions before imposing fees on property owners.
 
30.3     Ben Tresser, representing the buildings 135-149 South Central, noted that an agenda item was confirming the ruling against him. 
 
Councilmember Corcoran asked if he would be willing to sign an indemnification; Mr. Tresser responded that his insurance company would not allow him to sign any indemnification agreement.
 
Mayor Wheeler spoke to the audience stating that oral remarks regarding the Hope Village Tiny Houses topic would be discussed at the end of the meeting to allow for Council business.
 
40.    Consent calendar
None.
 
50.    Items removed from consent calendar
None.
 
60.    Ordinances and resolutions
60.1     COUNCIL BILL 2016-27 Continued from March 3, 2016 - A resolution affirming the Public Works Director’s administrative decision requiring the repair of an unsafe sidewalk located at 117 S. Central Avenue.
 
60.2     COUNCIL BILL 2016-28 Continued from March 3, 2016 - A resolution affirming the Public Works Director’s administrative decision requiring the repair of an unsafe sidewalk located at 135 through 149 S. Central Avenue.
        
60.3     COUNCIL BILL 2016-29 Continued from March 3, 2016 - A resolution affirming the Public Works Director’s administrative decision requiring the repair of an unsafe sidewalk located at 125 S. Central Avenue.
 
Public Works Director Cory Crebbin provided a staff report on Council Bills 2016-27, 2016‑28 and 2016-29.  The appeals for the three bills were denied on March 3, 2016.  Since that time, Public Works has received additional complaints with fourteen additional letters sent to buildings in the same area regarding non-compliant sidewalks.
 
Mr. Crebbin outlined the cost of repairs, noting the expense for City repairs was actually greater than the cost to a private property owner.  He noted the City Arborist had confirmed that shaving the tree roots would not hurt the trees.
 
Councilmember Corcoran asked whether these repair locations included ADA ramps; Mr. Crebbin believed 117 South Central did contain an ADA ramp.  Mayor Wheeler asked whether the ramp repair would be the City’s responsibility. Councilmember Bearnson asked Mr. Crebbin whether it was a good idea to continue with this design; Mr. Crebbin explained that if the City were to take responsibility for the ramps, he would rebuild them. 
 
Mr. Crebbin showed photos of various issues occurring downtown, noting the grates around the trees are considered walking surfaces and must be flat.  However, if the grates are removed, the area is not considered a walking area and removing the grates may eliminate the trip hazard in some areas.
 
Mr. Crebbin noted that Medford Urban Renewal Agency had no funds to pay for this project. 
 
*Councilmember Corcoran left the dais.
 
Mr. Crebbin believed the City would contract the work to outside contractors if we were responsible for the repairs and clarified that certain streets required pavers and certain streets required the 2x2 stamped concrete.
 
*Councilmember Corcoran returned to the dais.
 
Mayor Wheeler requested a cost estimate to enable the Council to make a decision. Mr. Crebbin noted it would cost approximately $800 per tree well.  If we replaced damaged areas with stamped concrete, we would need to replace a significantly larger area in order to maintain aesthetics.  In the worst case scenario, two or three pavers would need to be replaced around the tree well, or four feet in each direction.  The pavers would only need to be replaced if they were broken.  Otherwise, we can reuse the existing pavers. 
 
Councilmember Bunn clarified the question before Council is whether the City should financially assist with this issue.  If we don’t want to financially participate, we need to deny the appeals. In addition, we need to have the street look uniform and should maintain the standard. Councilmember Bunn believed it would be the City’s responsibility to replace any ADA ramps as they are different than sidewalks.  He recommended receiving input from the property owners before a decision was made and recommended the Council set aside Items 60.1, 60.2 and 60.3.
 
City Attorney Lori Cooper noted the liability to the City was relatively small, especially if we were working on a solution. 
 
Councilmember Gordon asked when the other 14 properties would respond.  Mr. Crebbin has heard from some of the property owners and they were waiting for the outcome of today’s meeting.
 
Councilmember Jackle noted that he had ex parte discussions regarding this issue with one of his clients, but did not believe it was a conflict of interest. He recommended holding the entire topic in abeyance and come up with an overall “fix”.
 
Councilmember Gordon asked whether there were pavers in other areas besides Central; Mr. Crebbin noted Fifth Street also had pavers.
 
Motion:  Hold all sidewalk appeals in abeyance for properties on Central Avenue from East Tenth Street in the south to East Fourth Street in the north and to toll all applicable time periods for sidewalk appeals for the same.
Moved by:  Daniel Bunn                                           Seconded by:  Chris Corcoran
 
Councilmember Bearnson noted additional pavers were located on Evergreen Parkway, near the drinking fountain; Mr. Crebbin did not believe that area was in the public right of way and instead was part of the Parking District.
 
Roll call:  Councilmembers Bearnson, Bunn, Corcoran, Gordon, Jackle, Matthews, Stine, and Zarosinski voting yes.
Motion carried and so ordered. 
 
Councilmember Corcoran clarified the plates around the trees were causing part of the problem; Mr. Crebbin explained there is a concrete seal being moved by the roots and displacing the pavers.  Councilmember Corcoran questioned whether the City could test a location and remove the grates to see what happens. 
 
Mayor Wheeler noted that Council should review this topic further, but it will be held in abeyance for now.
 
60.4     COUNCIL BILL 2016-32 Continued from March 3, 2016 - A resolution approving referral to the electors of the City of Medford the question of imposing a three percent tax on the sale of marijuana items by a marijuana retailer within the City.
 
* City Manager Pro Tem Bill Hoke left the dais.
 
Deputy City Attorney Kevin McConnell spoke regarding Council Bills 2016-32 and 2016‑33. Mayor Wheeler asked whether there was going to be a “blending” of medical and recreation outlets; Mr. McConnell responded that it is predicted, but it has not happened yet.  He clarified that the two questions for voters were 1) Whether to allow recreation marijuana retailers within City limits; and 2) Whether to impose a three percent tax on the sale of marijuana items. 
 
* Mr. Hoke returned to the dais.
 
Councilmember Bunn noted he liked the language in 2016-33’s explanatory statement language indicating the resolutions were “at odds” and asked why it was not included in 2016-32; Mr. McConnell offered to revise 2016-32 to include it, if needed.
 
Councilmember Gordon clarified if the three percent is approved and the other fails, then it would come back with Code language to consider with public hearings before Council voted; Mr. McConnell agreed.  If voters approve the tax but disallow the retailers, the City we would allow marijuana retailers and we would need a zone text amendment to include a marijuana retail tax code change, which would be fairly easy to complete.  The state law notes the City can enter into an intergovernmental agreement with the state to collect the taxes. 
 
Councilmember Bearnson asked whether tax allocation will go to OLCC licensees total or the OLCC retailer licensees; Mr. McConnell believed it was all licensees. There could be some significant tax revenue through our state allocated share or our three percent tax. 
 
*Councilmember Bearnson noted his potential conflict of interest.
 
Motion:  Adopt the resolution approving referral to the electors of the City of Medford the question of imposing a three percent tax on the sale of marijuana items by a marijuana retailer within the City.
Moved by:  Chris Corcoran                                      Seconded by:  Eli Matthews
Roll call:  Councilmembers Bunn, Corcoran, Gordon, Jackle, Matthews, Stine, and Zarosinski voting yes; Councilmember Bearnson abstaining.
Motion carried and so ordered. 
 
60.5     COUNCIL BILL 2016-33 Continued from March 3, 2016 - A resolution approving referral to the electors of the City of Medford the question of banning state‑licensed marijuana retailers within the City.
 
Motion:  Adopt the resolution approving referral to the electors of the City of Medford the question of banning state‑licensed marijuana retailers within the City.
Moved by: Chris Corcoran                                       Seconded by:  Daniel Bunn
 
Councilmember Stine preferred allowing the retailers, but clarified that Council could still use the federal exemption to disallow recreational sales.  Councilmember Corcoran responded that due to the “closeness” of the vote, it was decided to go on the ballot. Mr. McConnell noted that Council was not following any federal preemption.  We are simply following state law, which allows cities to opt out OLCC licensed businesses. 
 
Roll call:  Councilmembers Bunn, Corcoran, Gordon, Jackle, Matthews, and Zarosinski; Councilmember Stine voting no; Councilmember Bearnson abstaining.
Motion carried and so ordered. 
 
60.6     COUNCIL BILL 2016-44 An ordinance authorizing acceptance and expenditure of a grant in the amount of $4,000 from the Chaney Family Foundation for the purchase of satellite communication equipment and digital two-way radios for use in the Medford Emergency Management command vehicle.
 
Motion:  Adopt the ordinance authorizing acceptance and expenditure of a grant in the amount of $4,000 from the Chaney Family Foundation for the purchase of satellite communication equipment and digital two-way radios for use in the Medford Emergency Management command vehicle.
Moved by:  Chris Corcoran                                      Seconded by:  Dick Gordon
 
Councilmember Corcoran thanked the Chaney family for their generosity during the past few years as they have donated thousands of dollars to our community and continues to give to various non-profits in our area. 
 
Roll call:  Councilmembers Bearnson, Bunn, Corcoran, Gordon, Jackle, Matthews, Stine, and Zarosinski voting yes.
Motion carried and so ordered. 
 
 
60.7     COUNCIL BILL 2016-45 An ordinance amending sections 4.105, 4.710, 4.761, 4.763, 4.1111, 4.1200, 4.1202, 4.1203 and repealing sections 4.1003, and 4.1103 of the Medford Code pertaining to utility fees.
 
Mr. Crebbin provided a staff report.
 
*Councilmember Zarosinski left the dais. 
 
Motion:  Adopt the ordinance amending sections 4.105, 4.710, 4.761, 4.763, 4.1111, 4.1200, 4.1202, 4.1203 and repealing sections 4.1003, and 4.1103 of the Medford Code pertaining to utility fees.
Moved by: Chris Corcoran                                       Seconded by:  Daniel Bunn
 
Councilmember Gordon stated this topic should go to a public hearing and he would be voting no; Councilmember Jackle asked whether Council could set this topic for a public hearing;   Ms. Cooper confirmed. Councilmember Gordon stated there were changes to the Code language, specifically regarding Accessory Dwelling Unit (ADU) and deletions of other language.  The public’s utility billings will change and Council should provide transparency with a hearing.
 
Councilmember Corcoran clarified that these changes were discussed during the Police and Fire Station meetings; Councilmember Gordon agreed the increases were discussed during the Police and Fire discussions, but there are other changes that should go to a public hearing. 
 
Planning Director Jim Huber noted the ADU definition is found in other places throughout the Code, but it was not consistent.  The definition is being revised to be consistent with the other references. 
 
Mayor Wheeler reminded Council about the pending motion and stated Council could either amend the motion or move for a public hearing. 
 
Roll call:  Councilmembers Bearnson, Bunn, Corcoran, Matthews and Stine voting yes; Councilmembers Gordon and Jackle voting no.
Motion will be scheduled for second reading.
 
Councilmember Gordon noted that more than half the audience left and requested allowing the remaining citizens to speak.  Mayor Wheeler spoke to the audience and explained there would be a study session tonight regarding Tiny Houses and that opinions could be submitted electronically as well. 
 
Out of sequence.
 
30.4     Jack Schmidt and Travis Snyder, Precision Electric, spoke in opposition to Rogue Retreat’s Tiny Houses project.  Mr. Schmidt noted that he had offered to buy the property from the City and had contacted Mr. Hoke several times regarding the proposed purchase.  He stated that the businesses above Third Street have spent their own time and money to improve their area without Urban Renewal funding.  The area is inundated with homeless and has people sleeping in the bushes, syringes on the sidewalks, vehicle break-ins, homeless coming into their offices and businesses have changed their hours to prevent employees from leaving in the dark in the winter.  The proposal is for 12 to 15 buildings in the brochure, but Rogue Retreat’s website reports 18 buildings plus a restroom trailer, laundry/shower trailer, a kitchen trailer, a yurt and a dumpster on a dirt lot. 
 
Mayor Wheeler noted he did not have his mind made up on this topic yet and invited Mr. Schmidt and Mr. Snyder to the study session tonight.   
 
Mr. Schmidt volunteered to fix one of the uneven paver locations for the City. 
 
Councilmember Corcoran clarified that work sessions are not for public input, but the public is able to attend.
 
30.5     John Wing, Board of Directors of Randall Theatre, spoke in opposition to Rogue Retreat’s Tiny Houses project.  The program sounds worthwhile, but would have a negative impact on the theatre.  Complaints have been received from patrons regarding everything from parking to public safety.  Because the theatre is dependent on ticket sales to stay in business, any decrease in sales will greatly impact them. 
 
Councilmember Corcoran noted that MURA had provided funding to the Randall Theatre and thanked them for their wonderful work.  He clarified that at this point the City Council had only requested a proposal for the Tiny Houses project.  Mr. Wing explained that the theatre had received many opinions stating they needed to oppose this project. 
 
Councilmember Bearnson stated that it is too early to determine whether there will be a negative result from this project.  Mr. Wing agreed, but that he has already received concerns from his patrons advising they would not visit his theatre if the Tiny Houses project moves forward.
 
Councilmember Corcoran spoke to the audience, stating he must leave but he would watch the meeting to hear all their comments.
 
*Councilmember Corcoran left the dais.
 
30.6     Steve Curry, Heritage Motors, spoke in opposition to Rogue Retreat’s Tiny Houses project.  Heritage Motors has spent a lot of time and money into building his business at that location. He has customers after dark and they will not feel safe at night with others loitering and hanging around the area. 
 
30.7     Kim Clark, Home at Last, spoke in support of the Rogue Retreat Tiny Houses project.  She was formerly homeless and this project will provide people with a hand up not a hand out.  Everyone wants to help the homeless, just not next door to them. 
 
30.8     Valerie Amenbal, Phoenix, spoke in favor of the Rogue Retreat Tiny Houses project.
 
30.9     David Stepp, Medford, spoke in opposition to Rogue Retreat’s Tiny Houses project.  He noted there are many problems with homeless people.  He pointed out Medford’s signage prohibiting the transfer of items from cars to pedestrians, as well as the syringes and garbage in areas where homeless reside.  He stated it takes just one person to ruin a project for everyone.
 
In addition, Randall Theatre conducts a haunted house each October with hundreds of children in the area. 
 
30.10   Linda Donavan, Pallet Wine Company, spoke in opposition to Rogue Retreat’s Tiny Houses project.  She also noted the work she has put into her business.
 
Mayor Wheeler invited the audience to listen to the evening’s study session as the Council would be learning more about this topic.
 
Back in sequence.
 
70.    Council Business
70.1     Senior Center continued their request for a Council liaison.  Councilmember Zarosinski volunteered to serve and Councilmember Gordon would serve as alternate.
 
70.2     Councilmember Gordon requested an update on the conference center feasibility study; Mr. Hoke noted that there were seven respondents and a five-person committee consisting of Stephen Gambee, Bruce Hoevet, Carolyn Hill, Bill Thorndike and himself was created. He noted the committee members requested his participation on the committee; however, that decision is up to Council.  Staff is currently creating a meeting schedule.
 
70.3     Councilmember Bunn spoke regarding his Travel Medford motion during the March 17, 2016 Council meeting.  He noted it is very vague and he intended that way.  He would like a committee created and he believed the best way was to have two Councilmembers put together a written proposal to present to the rest of the Council.  He recommended Councilmember Zarosinski and himself.  Councilmember Bunn clarified his intent with his Travel Medford motion was for the information to come back to Council.
 
Councilmember Gordon noted that a Travel Medford committee was discussed during the Council Officers’ meeting today.   Staff is researching this issue and will put information together to discuss during a study session.  It will provide options of what other cities are doing. 
 
Mr. Hoke noted that staff has absolutely no opposition to Council’s involvement in the research and explained staff’s intention was to bring information back to Council and he welcomed any assistance throughout this process.
 
Mayor Wheeler clarified that Councilmembers Bunn and Zarosinski would be helping. 
             
80.    City Manager and other staff reports
80.1     Further reports from City Manager:  None
 
90.    Propositions and remarks from the Mayor and Councilmembers
90.1     Proclamations issued:  None
 
90.2     Further Council committee reports
Councilmember Gordon noted a Hospital Facilities Authority Board meeting was held and information should be coming to Council shortly.  Asante would like to borrow $20 million at 1.58% interest amortized over seven years to purchase equipment.  He stated they are doing well this year and they are using their “free cash” to pay down loans with higher interest rates and floating a new loan with a much lower interest rate.  They also have more than 300 days of cash on hand.
           
90.3     Further remarks from Mayor and Councilmembers:  None
 
Out of sequence.
 
Motion:  Approve the minutes of March 17, 2016. 
Moved by:  Tim Jackle                                             Seconded by:  Daniel Bunn
Roll call:  Councilmembers Bearnson, Bunn, Gordon, Jackle, Matthews and Stine voting yes.
Motion carried and so ordered.
 
Back in sequence.
 
100.  Adjournment
There being no further business, this Council meeting adjourned at 2:26 p.m.
 
The proceedings of the City Council meeting were recorded and are filed in the City Recorder’s Office. The complete agenda of this meeting is filed in the City Recorder’s Office.
 
 
 
 
Winnie Shepard
Deputy City Recorder
 
 
 
 

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