MEDFORD CITY COUNCIL GOAL SETTING
February 3, 2015
The meeting was called to order at 6:02 p.m. at the Rogue Valley Country Club, 2660 Hillcrest Road, Medford, with the following members and staff present:
Mayor Gary Wheeler; Councilmembers Daniel Bunn, Chris Corcoran, Eli Matthews, Tim Jackle, Dick Gordon, Kevin Stine, Michael Zarosinski and Clay Bearnson.
City Manager Eric Swanson, Deputy City Manager Bill Hoke, and City Recorder Glenda Wilson.
Reduce development application cycle time.
Permits can be submitted electronically now, but building is working to approve “simple remodel permits” immediately, over the counter.
Development Services is developing a simplified permitting process for schools in response to requests from the school district.
This topic has been completed, because the Planning Department had finalized text amendment as requested. But, a study session is planned on the topic.
Assist applicants in submitting thorough and complete development applications.
Councilmember Jackle asked for clarification of the Horizon Centre Study.
Glenda Wilson responded that this is the Arimes Report. Councilmember Gordon asked for Glenda Wilson to send out a copy to the Council.
Councilmember Corcoran requested a report on Building’s quarterly forums with contractors, citizens and stakeholders.
There have been two forums, with a third one scheduled in March and in April they plan to invite the contractors and stakeholders.
Councilmember Bunn asked whether the status of electronic applications can be reviewed by the public.
Sam Barnum responded that they could, but a pin was needed for access. So, although they were available online, the general public could not view the details of a permit, only the applicant had access. However, for a brief period, applications are posted to the City’s website with the SPAC agenda.
Glenda Wilson noted that public permit review may be available with the upcoming scanning upgrades.
Building Development Goals.
Sam Barnum explained that the Building Code Grading Effectiveness Scale is a grade issued by the Insurance Service Office. It is based on evaluations on cross-training, the certifications each staff person has. It is broken down into three sections: inspections, plan review and counter. There is a form that is completed and we are issued a grade on the results.
CRS means Community Rating Service. The City has been working to reduce Medford’s flood hazard rating, which lowers the homeowner’s insurance costs for Medford citizens.
Councilmember Corcoran inquired about how the business licenses process for medical marijuana are handled.
Sam Barnum responded that he is new to the business license processing, but he is not aware of anything specific in the Municipal Code about medical marijuana.
Assure that law enforcement resources are appropriately allocated by assessing calls for service and eliminating responses to calls that do not require police presence.
Councilmember Corcoran and Chief George discussed Police’s efforts to support cultural diversity. Chief George advised that a perfect police agency should represent the community that they serve. Our Police Department has been increasing their involvement with Medford’s Latino community and working to improve our mental health services.
At this time, there is a large demand for Police Officers in our area and across the country. This demand reduces the amount of qualified applicants available for hire.
Police Chief Tim George added that the Police Department has cameras in the cars. But criminal activities don’t always happen right in front of the car, requiring the need for the body cameras. The funding for the body cameras was paid using asset forfeiture money.
Provide Public Works infrastructure (streets, sewer, and storm drainage) construction and maintenance at the lowest life-cycle costs.
Councilmember Gordon asked about the utility trenches and the fact that the holes can’t seem to be compacted and therefore the trenches don’t seem to be level with the roads.
Cory Crebbin responded that Public Works has changed their trench patch. They are beginning to offset the patches, so they can’t line up with the pavement. It will be more of a diamond shape. Unfortunately, this is significantly more expensive, but this cost is less than repaving.
As far as compaction, they are now filled with maximum density fill. If there is an offset, that is often the sub-base under the street, not the patch.
Councilmember Corcoran requested information on the patch project on Table Rock Road.
Continue to address financial best practices to ensure financial stability now and into the foreseeable future.
Chris Reising Deputy City Manager, Development Services, explained the City’s need for a floodplain manager. The position is currently in Building, but he believes this position will eventually be moved to Planning because the latest revision of the Building Code advises that the position cannot be paid for with building funds.
Mike Snyder spoke about the City’s turnover. As we move forward, employee retention will become more important, because it is estimated that the number of potential applicants is declining.
Eric Swanson explained that the decline in qualified applicants is a nationwide issue. As the baby boomers move out of the workforce, they are replaced by millennials. Baby boomers were interested in working in one place for longer terms or until retirement. The millennials place more emphasis on accomplishments. But, overall there will be less people in the workforce, because the baby boomers created a large workforce. It is estimated that in the near future, the year 2020 or so, it was estimated we will have more jobs than qualified workers.
Improve employee health and control health benefit costs.
Mike Snyder spoke about the City’s efforts to become self-insured. Although it wasn’t cost effective this year, Human Resources will continue their work on self-insurance. The City’s insurance expense should decrease with the incorporation of the City’s Teamsters union employees into the same plan with the other City unions.
Align technology investments in support of the goals, objectives and action items identified in the City’s Strategic Plan.
Discussed an upgrade to the cameras in the Council Chambers and perhaps adding microphones in the Medford Room of the City Hall.
Protect waterways and wetlands which are unique components of the urban landscape.
Action 13.1a regarding protection of riparian areas on tributaries not currently subject to Riparian Corridor regulations, was removed. Council discussed options for stream protection and Planning’s activities now and in the future.
Provide adequate opportunities for public input.
City Manager’s Office is researching a possible revision to the City’s Boards & Commissions application process to ensure proper tracking and simplify appointments.
Revise performance management processes to incorporate technology based system for tracking performance and developing employees.
Mike Snyder explained the benefits of Humans Resources using NeoGov, which is a program used for applicants to submit applications, provide qualification scoring and allows applicants and staff to view status of applications. City Council requested a training to learn how the software is used.
Identify internal and community diversity demographics and develop a plan for recruitment of women and minorities for employment and promotional opportunities in the City.
Discussed recruitment of diverse employees for the City, specifically in the Police and Fire Departments. The Police Department is currently understaffed. Police Chief Tim George explained that there is currently a shortage of qualified police applicants in our area.
The Fire Department also has difficulty recruiting qualified applicants.
Councilmember Gordon expressed his opinion that Police and Fire should make it a priority to keep Police and Fire fully staffed.
Glenda Wilson briefly explained the layout of the finalized Strategic Plan, which will be submitted for Council’s approval at an upcoming Council meeting.
Meeting adjourned at 7:33 p.m.
Assistant to the City Manager I