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Agenda & Minutes

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Mayor & Council (View All)

City Council Study Session Agenda & Minutes

Thursday, January 09, 2020

January 9, 2020                              

6:00 P.M.                                                                               
Medford City Hall, Medford Room
411 W. 8th Street, Medford, Oregon

The City Council Study Session was called to order at 6:00 p.m. in the Medford Room of the Medford City Hall on the above date with the following members and staff present:
Mayor Gary Wheeler; Councilmembers Clay Bearnson (arrived at 6:05 p.m.), Kay Brooks (arrived at 6:14 p.m.), Tim DíAlessandro, Dick Gordon, Alex Poythress, Eric Stark, Kevin Stine, Michael Zarosinski (arrived at 6:33 p.m.); City Manager Brian Sjothun, Deputy City Attorney Eric Mitton, Planning Director Matt Brinkley, Principal Planner Angela Durant, Deputy City Recorder Winnie Shepard
Continuum of Care (CoC) Update/Homeless System Action Plan (HSAP)
Jackson Countyís Continuum of Care Manager Connie Wilkerson presented an update on the activities of the CoC program, including various statistics regarding homelessness. (See attached PowerPoint 1.)  
The CoC website includes an open portal which provides information on service agencies for employment, utilities, rent, etc. There are also 19 Access Points in Jackson County.  Access Points gather information to determine which services are needed and direct individuals to the agencies which provide their needed services. This coordination ensures citizens receive the same information through multiple points of contact without duplication of services.  There are 122 organizations involved with CoC in Jackson County. 
CoC is working with nonprofits to conduct Homeless Management Information System assessments for HUD. Medford continues to have a lack of housing available which may cause people to return to homelessness.  Unfortunately, Medfordís tiny house village units cannot be included in the housing inventory because they do not have heat, electricity and running water.
The Veterans Administration is involved in the program.  Councilmember Gordon requested City Manager Brian Sjothun invite their executive administrator to a study session to discuss the services provided by the Veterans Administration. 
Councilmember Brooks requested a demographic breakdown to determine the type of housing needed in Medford. 
Principal Planner Angela Durant noted that multiple agencies are interested in the $50,000 reunification program.  The City is preparing a letter of interest for next week.
Homeless System Action Plan
Ms. Durant presented a PowerPoint outlining the status of the Homeless System Action Plan, the revisions and requested feedback from Council.  (See attached PowerPoint 2.)  On November 21, 2019 the Council adopted the Implementation Plan which included the actions to accomplish the five goals.
Council discussed the proposed revisions and whether the Homeless System Action Plan should be formally approved.  Staff was directed to incorporate the revisions outlined and prepare a resolution supporting the plan for Council approval.
System Development Charge Options
Planning Director Matt Brinkley presented a PowerPoint outlining proposed SDC Reductions.  (See attached PowerPoint 3.)  The City currently averages eight ADUs a year with SDC fees of $6,000 per unit. Council discussed the financial impact to the City and the potential impact of reducing or eliminating SDC fees.
Based on survey results, deed restrictions were not recommended. However, staff suggested a 10‑year deed restriction prohibiting short-term rentals (defined as less than 30 days), because Councilís goal with fee reductions was to promote affordable housing and not vacation rentals.
Medford Water Commission Council Liaisons will speak with the Water Commissioners regarding whether reducing their SDC fees as well.
Mr. Sjothun suggested a follow-up meeting with a report in nine months to a year. 
Mr. Sjothun clarified that staff should bring back the options discussed tonight and the mixed use SDC reduction program.  Matt Brinkley and Sjothun will also speak with the Medford Water Commission regarding their fees. Council would like to staff to work on SDC reductions for affordable housing units.
Charter Amendment Comments Review
Mr. Sjothun noted that Councilmembers Bearnson and Gordon are the Council representatives on the Committee and that Deputy City Attorney Eric Mitton and he will attend the meetings. 
A list of potential topics was distributed for revision/addition.  Council discussed how to process the suggestions and had differing opinions regarding whether additional information was needed before the meeting. 
Mr. Sjothun will work with Mr. Mitton to obtain clarification on some of the topics.
Councilmember Stine and Mayor Wheeler provided a brief overview of the Council Officers meeting.  The City Manager evaluation would most likely occur mid-March. The new 5 cent bag charge reimburses stores for the cost of paper bags and the DEQ will enforce ban. College students have been using the post office parking lot, which reduces customer parking; Mr. Sjothun will contact the postmaster to resolve the issue.
Kid Time/Childrenís Museum of Southern Oregon
Councilmember Brooks requested a resolution or letter of support for the Kid Time/Childrenís Museum of Southern Oregonís $2 million request to the Oregon Legislature.  Mr. Sjothun agreed and noted that our Lobbyist Cindy Robert is working on the request as well. 
The meeting adjourned at 8:12 p.m.
Winnie Shepard, CMC
Deputy City Recorder

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