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Agenda & Minutes

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Medford Urban Renewal (View All)

Medford Urban Renewal Board Meeting Agenda & Minutes

Thursday, February 21, 2019

February 21, 2019

Immediately following the 6pm City Council Meeting
Medford City Hall, Council Chambers
411 West 8th Street, Medford, Oregon

The meeting was called to order at 8:27 p.m. in Council Chambers, City Hall, 411 W. 8th Street, Medford with the following members and staff present.
Chair Kay Brooks; Board members Clay Bearnson, Tim D’Alessandro, Dick Gordon, Alex Poythress, Eric Stark, Kevin Stine, Michael Zarosinski; Board member Gary Wheeler was absent.
Executive Director Brian Sjothun; Deputy City Manager Eric Zimmerman; City attorney Lori Cooper; City Recorder Karen Spoonts
20.    Approval or Correction of the Minutes of the January 17, 2019 Regular Meeting
         There being no additions or corrections, the minutes were approved as presented.
30.    Oral Requests and Communications from the Audience
         30.1     Robert Shand commented on the signage, the need for paved alleyways, and traffic calming in their neighborhood.
         30.2     Nick Lee, Medford, stated he owns a rental facility close to Kids Unlimited and expressed concern with their loud HVAC system, which should be at another location, according to the original conditions. There are also halogen lights that are too bright for his tenants. The CUP mentions a buffer fence that has not been added. Executive Director Sjothun thanked him for his recent letter and the Planning Department is looking into these issues.
40.    Consent calendar
50.    Items removed from consent calendar
60.    Resolutions
70.    Board Business
80.    Director and other staff reports
         80.1     MURA Advisory Committee
MURA Director Harry Weiss provided the staff report pertaining to the Advisory Committee. Board member Bearnson noted we also need to appoint a subcommittee. Mr. Weiss stated who would review the applications would be important too; Board member D’Alessandro would like to be involved in the sub-committee.  Board member Zarosinski questioned if there has been any formal outreach; Mr. Weiss noted there will be outreach once it is approved and he has had a couple of inquiries from folks who might be interested in serving. He noted the Committee could start with a partial fill until all vacancies are appointed.
Motion:  Establish a MURA Advisory Committee as noted in the AIC with solicitation of applications due March 20, 2019, and the designation of a MURA Subcommittee to review applications, conduct interviews, and forward recommendations to the full Board by April 4, 2019.
Moved by:  Kevin Stine                                              Seconded by:  Tim D’Alessandro
Amended Motion:  Change the Advisory Committee requirements to include two individuals from Liberty Park, vs. one; change the At-Large from three to two.
Moved by:  Kevin Stine                                              Seconded by:  Alex Poythress
Mr. Weiss stated the Advisory Committee will also have a business owner from Liberty Park.
Amended Motion Roll Call:  Bearnson, Brooks, D’Alessandro, Gordon, Poythress, Stark, Stine, and Zarosinski voting yes.
Motion carried and so ordered.
Board member Gordon expressed concern with the first bullet in the AIC which is “identification and prioritization of MURA projects in the Liberty Park area north of Jackson Street” as there needs to be direction from MURA to the committee. Board member Stark express concern with all three bullet points. Mr. Weiss stated the April study session will give clear marching orders for the Advisory Committee. Board member Bearnson questioned if this will be a joint study session with the Advisory Committee; Mr. Weiss did not believe so, as he would like the Board to discuss this on their own.
Roll Call:  Bearnson, Brooks, D’Alessandro, Gordon, Poythress, Stark, Stine, and Zarosinski voting yes.
Motion carried and so ordered.
Motion:  Appoint Kay Brooks, Alex Poythress and Tim D’Alessandro to the MURA Board Subcommittee.
Moved by:  Kevin Stine                                              Seconded by:  Dick Gordon
Board member Zarosinski questioned what the subcommittee will do; Mr. Weiss stated the subcommittee will interview the applicants for the Advisory Committee.
Roll Call:  Bearnson, Brooks, D’Alessandro, Gordon, Poythress, Stark, Stine, and Zarosinski voting yes.
Motion carried and so ordered.
         80.2        Mr. Weiss questioned if any would like to tour of the Elks Club could be in March, Board members Brooks, Gordon, and Stark would like the tour, possibly after 9 a.m.
90.    Propositions and remarks from the Board members
         90.1        Board member Bearnson questioned if there are other property owners regarding the retrofit program, Mr. Weiss noted Living Waters Church is remodelling their building and have surplus property and have asked about potential support. Board member Bearnson questioned if a non-profit could be used; Mr. Weiss noted there are various functions in a thriving downtown, including non-profit and faith-based organizations, though the latter raises a potential church-state issues.
         90.2        Board member Brooks asked Mr. Weiss to explain the purpose of urban renewal. Mr. Weiss stated the literal reading of the statue and they are predicated on elimination of blight, crime, health, and to prevent decline. Because of the politics of tax increment financing, critics often think its use should only be for an increase in the property tax base.
         90.3        Board member Stark questioned if we now need to initiate the tax base. Deputy City Manager Zimmerman noted a feasibility study is enough direction at this time. Mr. Sjothun questioned if that was what Board member Brooks wanted or was it get the consultant to work on the study. Board member Brooks clarified her motion during the Council meeting was to request the consultant to conduct the feasibility study pertaining to additional MURA districts. Mr. Weiss will verify what the contract states with the consultant.
         90.4        Board member Gordon stated the church on E. Main Street was built in the 1950’s and there is probably a gold vein under that building.
100.  Adjournment
There being no further business the meeting adjourned at 9:08 p.m.
The proceedings of the 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.
Karen M. Spoonts, MMC
City Recorder

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