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REGULAR MEETING OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF NOVI
MONDAY, JUNE 5, 2000 AT 7:30 PM
COUNCIL CHAMBERS – NOVI CIVIC CENTER – 45175 W. TEN MILE ROAD
Mayor Clark called the meeting to order at 7:30 PM.
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
ROLL CALL: Mayor Clark, Mayor ProTem Lorenzo, Council Members Bononi, Crawford, Csordas, DeRoche and Kramer - Member Bononi arrived at 8:03 PM and Member DeRoche arrived at 10:35 PM.
APPROVAL OF AGENDA
Member Csordas added, under Mayor and Council Issues, Item #6 Overview of the Quail Ridge JCK letter, Mayor Clark added Item #7, Tax abatements and Member Csordas added Item #8, letter from Textron Corporation from Robert Burnham.
Mr. Helwig removed Items #5 and #6 under Matters for Council Action – Part I per legal Counsel.
CM-00-06-164 Moved by Csordas, seconded by Lorenzo; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve the agenda as amended.
Vote on CM-00-06-164 Yeas: Clark, Crawford, Csordas, Kramer, Lorenzo
Absent: Bononi, DeRoche
SPECIAL REPORTS - None
COMMITTEE REPORTS - None
Mayor Clark presented plaques expressing the City’s appreciation and recognition of their outstanding service to the community.
Mr. Nowicki advised this was a very small section of Erma extending from Novi Road westerly to the residential property. A portion of Erma was already vacated and there was now a request to vacate the remainder of Erma. They had been through the process and most departments supported the vacation. The one objection was from the Traffic Consultant regarding the operation of the Lakeview Market. There was also a letter from the Lakeview Market people and their attorney indicating they objected to the vacating. Their concern was parking, service to their dumpsters and various other facets of their market operation.
Mr. Korte said there was confusion regarding the parking on the north side of Lakeview Market.
He stated there was illegal angle parking put in by Danny Love. There is not one parking place on the site; there are two legal parking places on Erma. He said there was more than enough property for Lakeview Market to deal with its own property, business and liability. Mr. Korte felt the Kassab family was responsible, as they now own the party store.
Rob Grassel represented Kassab Investment Company, in this vacating said he submitted a letter dated 5-24-2000 seeking to clarify the objections of the Lakeview Market regarding this street vacation. They concurred with Mr. Arroyo’s assessment regarding the vacation of this right-of-way. The Kassab’s have owned the property since October 98 and without the Erma Street right-of-way it would be impossible for them to continue operating. It related to both ingress and egress of delivery trucks, which are a daily occurrence and directly to the traffic and parking issues Mr. Arroyo addressed in his memo of May 5, 2000. If parking were restricted to the east section of Old Novi Road it would cause parking overflows not only into the Novi Road right-of-way but also into the businesses to the north, southeast and south. These are traffic concerns as well as health safety and welfare concerns. Mr. Grassel had not heard a single reason to vacate this right of way and it was not in the best interests of the City of Novi. In answer to Mr. Korte’s reference to Ordinance violations or citations relative to parking since the Kassabs had owned the market there had not been a single citation or ordinance violation.
Roger Jacob, owner of parcel adjacent to Lakeview Market, felt there was a problem of liability for the City of Novi and to him. He felt there was serious gross negligence by the City allowing illegal parking, unloading of vehicles and deliveries occurring there. There are safety concerns for pedestrians, parking and serious problems with traffic patterns. If half the street was vacated a truck could get in and out of there without a problem and he did not believe turning radius was an issue. There are liability concerns regarding trash and beer bottles on their property from the store so they built berms to make a separation and people park on them. He felt it needed to be vacated and the area provided as a buffer zone for future development. He offered several photos regarding illegal truck deliveries and the front and sides were completely packed.
Ed Kriewall 45119 mile Rd. congratulated Ms. Malone, Mrs. Gronlund-Fox and Mrs. Valente on their promotions and thanked Mr. Helwig for excellent selections.
He felt Council should reject the resolution due to older neighborhoods around the lake and the setback problems with all the homes in the area. If Council vacated Erma Street they would suffer liability from the owners of Lakeview Market because it would hamper their business severely. Council should consult with the City Attorney and heed the recommendation of the planning and traffic consultants. He felt it served no public purpose.
Mr. Grassel stated he had not heard a single reason related to health, safety and welfare related to the vacation of this right of way. If there are parking issues alleged to be illegal, if there are non-conforming parking situations or potential nuisances occurring in the area they are issues that should be addressed by the Novi Police Department. They are not issues that are properly addressed by the vacation of a right of way that is essential to the operation of a longstanding commercial entity in the City of Novi.
Mayor Clark closed the public hearing.
1. CITY MANAGER
Ms. Malone has been serving in the capacity of Acting Public Relations
Director. She will now have the new title of Community Relations Manager.
We are not only in the business of getting timely, factual information
throughout our community but are in the business of building
relationships, seeking input and having a participatory government 24 hrs.
a day throughout the year. She will lead an immediate effort to extend
ourselves to the community who would like to provide input regarding road
improvements and what may or may not appear on the ballot later this year.
Ms. Malone will develop the first community newsletter, ways to
communicate with colleagues within the City and instances that bring the
Bev Valente has worked in the Finance Department, Treasurer’s division,
for 11 years. She has been involved in the taxation work and has proved
her stewardship of the public funds and has excelled in a demanding field.
She will seek her Treasurer’s certification through Central Mich.
Tia Gronlund-Fox has worked closely with the City Council during their selection processes and they have seen her work and professionalism. Her position will officially appear in the Table of Organization July 1. She has been with the City for two years as the Human Resource Specialist and has a Bachelors Degree in Human Resources and a specialty in Labor Relations from Oakland University. Ms. Gronlund-Fox has an open mind and lots of fresh ideas about how we value, retain and attract the highest quality people in service to this community.
Mr. Helwig said he hoped the community understood how important neighborhoods are to the success and long term vitality of the community. The conversion of a Community Development Planner to Neighborhood Services Coordinator position will to increase an emphasis on code enforcement and responsiveness to neighborhood services. A Neighborhood Services Committee is being created of mid managers in our organization to review neighborhood suggestions and priorities to enhance the dialogue and input into this government. He emphasized this will be a day to day emphasis and they are placing resources where that emphasis should be. They are looking forward to working in partnership with the community particularly in these neighborhood focus groups on road improvements. Let us hear from anyone who would like to give us their input on the needs of the community.
2. DEPARTMENT REPORTS - None
3. ATTORNEY - None
Novi Heights Subdivision residents Dick Faulkner, LaReta Roder and Lynn Dooley objected to the connection at the south end of Clark Street to Churchill Crossing due to the safety and welfare of all of their residents. It would result in undesirable traffic patterns not customarily found in residential areas. They requested Council prevent this in any way possible when it appeared before them. Singh Development has set up meetings with all the subdivisions that surround their purposed new development, Churchill Crossing. The meeting is scheduled for June 14, 2000 at 7 PM at City Hall to discuss issues surrounding changes to their plans.
LaReta Roder, President of Novi Heights Community Association, was present on behalf of Nancy Mitts who lived next to CVS/Arbor Warehouse. She had been working with City staff to resolve the issue between Arbor and their subdivision. Ms. Roder thanked the staff for working on this and said it was a novel experience to have such cooperation from the City. However, they would like to see a permanent solution to this problem.
Village Oaks residents Amy Henning and Cathy Thurman, noted that that Council had made an oral commitment to make Village Oaks their #1 priority next year. Ms. Thurman asked what Village Oaks residents could do to make Council’s commitment a reality and what the appropriate method to keep this a priority was? An April 3rd request from Ms. Thurman was not answered. She asked for a written response from Mayor Clark explaining how the priorities are determined and at what point in time it was determined that Village Oaks was not an appropriate project for this year and when Timber Ridge and Lakewood were determined to be more important. She requested a written commitment from this administration as to when the roads would be repaired.
Mayor Clark asked Mr. Nowicki if Village Oaks would be the #1 priority next year? Mr. Nowicki said it was the only one on the list for next year. Mayor Clark wanted it on the record again.
Mayor Clark assured Ms. Thurman that she would receive something in writing this week.
Toni Nagy, Harold Kobakof, Mary Czonka, Steven Henning and Deborah Hobart were opposed to the 9 Mile Road bike path. It would remove the berms and mature trees at the back of the residential the properties. No one on the north side of Nine Mile wanted the bike path either. They had to pick up after dogs, etc. They suggested Council not approve this and the grant be turned down. These subdivisions are large enough that the children can bike in their own subdivisions.
Mr. Kobakof understood the problems with the bike path for residents. However, he asked Council to consider it from Meadowbrook to Novi Road where they desperately needed some kind of sidewalk or bike path. This would improve the quality of life for Chase Farms, Meadowbrook and Deer Brook residents. It is unsafe for children in the area and there is no access to Novi Road, Guernsey’s, Blockbuster, etc. The Rotary Club donated a park and there is no access except to drive. If they walked they had to walk on the busy section of the road. He asked that they try to find a resolution that would please residents on both sides. Perhaps the grant funds could be used to complete the bike path from Meadowbrook to Novi and pave the access into Rotary Park.
Sarah Gray, 133 Maudlin, felt Erma was a liability the City couldn’t possibly win because the trucks were backing out onto Novi Road blind and asked why the Kassab’s couldn’t park in their vacant backyard. What has been developed for the rest of the City does not work in their area. She asked if, regarding Stormwater issues, homeowners were notified about Item #8 under Matters for Council Action Part II regarding vacating a portion of Maudlin? She supported this.
Andrew Mutch requested that Council not adopt the resolution to terminate the Nine Mile Road bike path project; he felt it was premature and would set a terrible precedent. The Railroad crossing needed to be completed and it would not be funded unless the grant was accepted. The western segment would have zero impact on residential properties in that area. The existing residential properties along the western segment already have a bike path. The properties where the bike path would be constructed are either park properties or industrial properties, therefore having zero impact on any residents on that western segment. If the bike path was not constructed it would cut off access to a City park and continue to create a dangerous situation when people continue to use that segment of Nine Mile Road under unsafe conditions. He felt, regarding the eastern segment, the residents concerns were valid but before a decision could be made all the alternatives should be explored. It probably is the worst location for the path. It could be moved closer to the road or the north side of the road. He felt money was not put into pedestrian paths and if the City rejected this grant then in the future they would not be looked on favorably for them. A decision was precipitous and unnecessary at this point. He asked Council to protect the rights of all citizens, examine all the facts, save a worthwhile needed project and serve the interests of all citizens
Jim Korte asked that Maudlin be pushed along. He requested Elm Court be tabled. Council tabled this last time until the developer could prove with the vacating of the road there would be a building site. If vacated there are still power lines to be dealt with because they are too low for anything to be built; it would be a flag lot because the entrance is through a 12-foot strip. How would a driveway be put in? Tap 47 paperwork from JCK was still not right. 105 is the correct tap and it is 106 that is the wrong tap.
Mike Hilley, 135 Maudlin, was supposed to be notified about Maudlin street vacation, as most of that property was his driveway. It’s an additional 30 feet off Maudlin and there are wetlands there as well.
Steve Henning, 22415 Chestnut Tree, felt a left turn signal at Nine Mile Road and Haggerty would increase the traffic volume. He said Nine Mile was a smaller road and he would like to see it stay that way.
Tonni Nagy said there had been fatalities at Nine Mile and Haggerty and she approved of a left turn traffic light.
Anthony Hobart, 21994 Picadilly, said not all dog people are irresponsible and a bike path would not change that; the people had to change that. He urged Council to be creative with this solution because it is a very dangerous pathway to jog towards Novi Road. There are a lot of children, biking and walking and asked Council to find a solution to make both sides of the equation happy.
Paul Farugia, 21903 Picadilly, said there was a bike path along 275 but you can’t get to it. It can be accessed from Nine Mile east of Haggerty Road but without a bike path to get to it he did not want to take his children down there.
CONSENT AGENDA (Approval/Removals)
Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo removed Items B and G.
CM-00-06-165 Moved by Crawford, seconded by Lorenzo; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve Consent Agenda Items A, C-F and H-O.
Vote on CM-00-06-165 Yeas: Clark, Bononi, Crawford, Csordas, Kramer,
C. Request for approval of License Agreement between the City of Novi and Barclay Estates
Homeowners Association for Subdivision Entryway Signs- Barclay Estates Subdivision
D. Approval of Traffic Control Orders 00-46 and 00-47 for installation of Stop Signs at Galway
Drive at Foothills Court and on Foothills Court at Galway in the North Hills Estates
E. Approval of Road Commission for Oakland County Agreement for Nine Mile/Haggerty Road
Traffic Signal Modernization to four-way left turn phasing signals.
F. Approval of Resolution requesting that Rep. Sue Rocca, Chair of the Committee on
Regulatory Reform forthwith schedule House Bills 4834 and 4835 for hearing.
H. Approval of Change Order No. 1 to 1999-2000 Bituminous Paving Improvements Program
contract in the amount of $728,883.00 for the Expanded Neighborhood Roadway
I. Approval of Change Order No. 1 to 1999-2000 Concrete Paving Improvements Program
contract in the amount of $286,776.00 for the Expanded Neighborhood Roadway
J. Approval of East Lake Drive Rehabilitation and Water Main Extension Project and
authorization to solicit construction proposals.
K. Award bid for Walk-Behind Concrete Saw to Cougar Sales and Rental, Inc, the low bidder in
the amount of $7,562. (DPW)
L. Approval to purchase one (1) Hostage Negotiator Telephone from Rescue Phone, a sole
source vendor, in the amount of $5,500 (Police Department)
M. Award bid for Excavator and Trailer to Bobcat of Detroit, the low bidder, in the amount of
N. Approval of Fiscal Year-End budget amendment No. 2000-9
O. Approve Claims and Accounts: Warrant No. 573
Mayor Clark advised the audience that the Consent Agenda approval included approval of Item D, Approval of installation of stop signs at Galway Dr. at Foothills Ct. and on Foothills Ct. at Galway in the North Hills Estates Subdivision.
MAYOR AND COUNCIL ISSUES
1. Discussion of scheduling a Council Meeting for every Monday Night-Mayor Clark
Mayor Clark received feedback from Council Members that there were enough meetings already. He suggested a third meeting for presentations and Mayor and Council discussion items, which would leave the two regular scheduled meetings per month to deal with audience participation and Consent Agenda with action items.
Member Crawford thought it had some merit if the additional meeting focused on certain business and he would be willing to try it.
Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo stated there is a Special meeting process and therefore she would oppose adding another meeting. She noted she is a very dedicated volunteer and also wished to maintain a private life.
Member Kramer would not be opposed to a regular special meeting with a limited agenda and a time limit.
Member Bononi said no and thought it was time to cooperate and tighten up their ship. She thanked Mayor Clark for allowing everyone to comment on the issues. However, it would take the cooperation of Council, Administration, City Manager, the audience and folks at home to be more efficient about how business was done. Everyone should have the right to speak but everyone should not have the right to speak twice including Council Members. She would not be looking for any type of fast tracking items on the agenda. If dedicated to that they should be able to have two regular monthly meetings and call a Special meeting if one is needed.
Member Csordas appreciated and shared Mayor Clark’s desire to do all they could to move the City forward and communicate with people. The reason Mayor and Council Issues had been moved up was because the meetings were going until 1:30 a.m. This is very serious business but he would like to keep it to two regular meetings.
2. Proposal for Study of Stormwater Drainage Improvement in the Lakes Area-Member
Member Kramer worked up a proposal and asked for Council support to take the next step. The proposal was to create a Stormwater Drainage Improvement program for the Lakes area focused on using H.C.D. funds. The process would be to meet with the homeowners in the area to obtain support for the concept. The concept was to focus on the areas that already have water and sewer and see if a scale and scope of a project could be defined fundable with a portion of H.C.D. funds on an annual basis. He would like an Implementation Planning Committee that would include a substantial representation of homeowner residents.
Member Crawford, Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo, Mayor Clark and Member Csordas supported the further exploration of this proposal.
Member Bononi supported bringing forth the proposal for a study as long as there was no expenditure for funding proposed. This would have a great opportunity to duplicate the Sub Watershed planning that is going on now and they could get a lot of this information by requesting it. She would support these things going in a parallel track.
Member Kramer asked Member Bononi if she would participate in some of the preliminary discussions? Member Bononi replied on the basis of this document, no thank you.
3. Discussion of Novi High School 10 Mile Road Entrance-Member Bononi
Member Bononi said she had also asked if the signalization improvements at Ten Mile and Taft would exacerbate this existing condition and also when those light improvements would be installed. They will be installed prior to the school year this year. Mr. Arroyo had suggested that there might be a potential improvement as a result of a proposed signal at Christina but she understood now that was not a sure thing.
Mr. Arroyo said one of the things that dictated the location of traffic signals was the volume of traffic on the side streets and the spacing of those traffic signals. The traffic signals being discussed were ideally spaced and provided a good progression of traffic at the speed traffic travels on Ten Mile Road. There is a possibility of a future signal at Christina but he thought it would be too close to the other signal and would not fall into the 1/3 spacing. The signal at the Orchard Ridge Subdivision could potentially serve subdivisions on both sides of the road and was a possibility if the 1/3 of a mile signal spacing was maintained. There would be some improvement in gaps but at the same time increases in traffic volumes. Increased traffic would continue to make left turns out of local driveways more difficult. The best possible solution would be to attempt to tie them in to where the signals exist. If Churchill Crossings moves forward to Council they would see a connection from the project over to Christina allowing some of the residents living in Cedar Springs and Jamestown to use that signal to turn left onto Ten Mile. The signals would improve access to Ten Mile for some residents but it would not improve for all residents.
Member Bononi asked if there were instances when shorter distances between signals could be used?
Mr. Arroyo said yes; signals with closer spacing have been approved through the Oakland County Road Commission and it would be up to them to approve any signal in this location. Generally it happened where there was a high volume roadway that was a side street and it was needed so there was no undue delay due to turning traffic in and out of the high volume roadway. The closest you ever see functioning signals is 1,000 to 1,200 feet apart.
Member Bononi stated then there might be an improvement at Taft and Ten Mile and then if the development was brought forward there would definitely be a light there. Mr. Arroyo could not say there would definitely be a light there but there is a strong possibility that it would eventually meet the warrants for a signal there. The only body that could make that decision was Oakland County Road Commission and he could not speak to whether or not they would approve one there. He did think with traffic on both sides of Ten Mile Road coming from separate subdivisions there was a high probably that it would eventually meet the warrants.
4. Twelve Mile Road Update-Member Csordas
Member Csordas asked for an update on the widening of the road that the developer of the mall behind West Oaks committed to doing at their own cost.
Mr. Nowicki said the developer had requested that Council look at them as the contractor for the 12 Mile Road roadway and all the other improvements include in that. For the past several months they have been working on putting together the program and the contract. The finalized construction plans are ready and they are looking to have something before Council on June 19th for approval or consideration on a contract with the developer, PLC West of Novi, to act as the contractor for that project. There are other items to be addressed at that time. The project costs have escalated and the developer would be requesting Council consider amending or modifying the existing S.A.D. to cover the increase in costs. Again, 100% at their cost.
Member Csordas asked when the widening of 12 Mile Road would start?
Mr. Nowicki thought it would start in April 2001. There are some high pressure gas mains that have to be relocated and other underground utilities that would take place throughout the upcoming season. The developer was preparing a schedule for the City and preliminarily they were looking at making all the other roadway improvements on Novi Road, the ramp off of I-96 and some of the other local improvements prior to 12 Mile Road.
Mr. Helwig said their intent was to have as complete a packet of information to Council Thursday and the most current status of things to deliberate and review about ten days before the meeting on the 19th. Their hope was that Resolutions 5 and 6 could be revisited at that meeting. The investment for this development is over $100 million and estimated costs are approaching $14 million for public improvements that would be fully funded by the developer. They are reviewing the final list of those improvements and at Mr. Helwig’s urging they are considering burying the utilities at the intersection of 12 Mile and Novi Road. There is hesitancy on the part of the utility companies to participate in that exploration. They hoped the utility work would be done by this winter and construction would commence on a large scale in the spring and be done by next fall.
This is also the project where the issue of how many appraisals were received for the acquisition of public property came in review. This project would include public improvements being financed privately and it would be good business practice to have two appraisals for the acquisition for any size and dollar value of public property. He said on this project, because it is so far along and privately funded, the majority of parcels would have one appraisal. In any future public property acquisitions they would insist on two appraisals. In this instance on the larger properties JCK would have two appraisals conducted.
Member Csordas asked that they do not allow this new boulevard to become what the other boulevard on 12 Mile had become. Mr. Nowicki said Council did approve the installation of an irrigation system along that section of Meadowbrook Road and he felt it would go a long way toward maintaining good vegetation there. The remainder of 12 Mile Road would have an irrigation system as well.
Mayor Clark concurred with the comments made by Member Csordas and Mr. Helwig.
Member Crawford said there was a scathing letter in the newspaper about the 12 Mile Road Boulevard and he hoped a plan would come forward soon with a much more extensive landscaping plan. Mr. Nowicki said funds have been allocated in the budget for this.
Mayor Clark agreed with Member Crawford and also received a letter about the deplorable condition of the boulevard. It was always compared to Farmington Hills and in all fairness they floated a $12 million bond issue just for the median.
5. Arbor/CVS Warehouse Operation – Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo
Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo said CVS Warehouse Operations are inflicting noise and other problems on residents in the area. She asked that within 30 days, the facility manager respond to our demand, in writing. Also, by the first meeting in July, in addition to a report from Mr. Saven, she requested a legal opinion of their violations and what permanent remedies could be put in place to alleviate those violations.
Mayor Clark concurred with Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo.
6. Quail Ridge, JCK Letter
Member Csordas stated he had been against this from the beginning and asked a representative from JCK to respond to the poor planning by the Northville Township planners and the developer in Quail Ridge Subdivision. They have created their own problem and are now coming to Novi for a $418,000 project that they want the City of Novi to pay $248,772 for. Member Csordas read a portion of a letter from JCK "that the original channel in Quail Ridge was never constructed and the easement as indicated on the original construction plans". They have dug their own hole and now they want us to sleep in it. He still opposed this and felt it was unconscionable for the City of Novi to put a penny in there except for maybe the drop structure for $35,000.
Dave Potter, JCK Associates, said they had reviewed this project on many different levels and felt that the original plans showed the drainage system to be relocated, excavated and the ponds to be removed on completion of construction of the subdivision. They met with the Township representatives and engineer and determined it would be in everyone’s best interest to stake out where the easement was originally platted. It was done and obviously the creek was no where near the easement. So, for the City to be asked to pay for relocating it to where it was originally constructed was a concern to them. They thought it would be more equitable to allow the Township to correct some of these issues and then for the City to enter into an agreement through the Drainage Board to address the long term issues facing that drain. That was typical with this type of drain that would become an inter-county drain where you would normally pay your share of the long term maintenance of whatever was improved. He believed that the purpose of the State Drain Code, in this situation, encouraged the communities to work together. The issue before Council would be whether they felt it was a fair share to correct some of the problems that exist there. When that subdivision was first developed it was known that the upstream area in Novi was not being detained. A lot of communities had to deal with that issue downstream throughout the whole Rouge River Basin had to pass those flows. The bottom line was they were starting to recognize that maybe they were asking the City of Novi to pay for a little more then they should. At the next series of meetings with the township and representatives it might be a good to debate whether Council considered it to be a fair share. He thought they had backed down from the original 80% of the $400,000 plus and were now closer to about half and that was still asking that Novi share in some of the construction items downstream.
Member Csordas felt there was no way Novi should be involved in more than 10% and less then 10% would be the drop structure. They should reduce their request by considerably more because there was no way the citizens of Novi would give the citizens of Northville Township $248,000 for something they created.
Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo objected to this issue being placed under Mayor and Council Issues. It was not the appropriate place for Council debate. It did not allow adequate time to discuss it and respond since it was just placed on this evening’s agenda. Municipalities have an obligation to take care of their own stormwater on site. The issue is one of health, safety and welfare for the citizens of Northville Township due to the un-detained quantity and velocity of water from the City of Novi into the Township. The Chapter 21 Drain process could impose mandates on us, it is basically out of our hands and we are going to have to pay. She thought Council was trying to negotiate in good faith to pay their fair share and hoped they would not have to pay more than that based on what the Inter-Counties might impose on Novi due to this process. She would like this placed on the agenda as an action item or discussion item for Council to further debate this issue in the manner in which it should be discussed.
Member Csordas said he agreed with that and he did not misrepresent anything.
Member Kramer said during dialogue with Northville Township we agreed to work together with the township and if not the Inter County Drain would work for us and tell us what to do. If we do work together there is the opportunity to apply for a number of supportive grants that are available. The engineering report was just that at this point. Council needed to know how much was fundable by grants and then there should be dialogue with Northville for the next step. The incentive for working together would be the 50% to 60% range of grant funding available.
7. Tax Abatement Letter
Mayor Clark read a letter into the public record regarding the tax abatement policy.
May 31, 2000
An open letter to the Novi citizens:
Recently the City of Novi adopted a Tax Abatement Policy. As a result of the adoption of that policy much has been stated regarding the policy that is based on emotion and lack of information or in some cases misinformation. Let me begin by saying that I respect the right of those members of the community that disagree with the policy to speak and write against it.
The essence of any democracy is the free flow of ideas and opinions to arrive at decisions that best represent the long-range interest of the community as a whole. No group of civic leaders who are elected can ever satisfy every member of the community all the time. To attempt to do so is a sure formula for failure.
Now let’s look at a few facts as they relate to Tax Abatements and what needs to be considered in relation to that policy. We live in a much different world then we did 25 years ago. Competition is the key to our continued prosperity. The competition we face now is not local but is international and it will continue to grow. If anyone doubts this ask yourselves these questions:
1. What happened to our steel industry in America?
2. When you slip on a pair of shoes where were they made?
3. When we put on an article of clothing how many of them are made outside of the United
4. The American Airline Industry that was the world leader in aviation now faces competitive
pressures like never before and we are not the only game in the world.
5. Finally, should anyone think silicone valley is the ultimate salvation, Europe and Asia are
developing a silicone valley that will directly and aggressively compete with our leadership in
this area in the next year or so.
Each of these examples of loss or potential loss of our productive capacity represents the loss of our competitive edge as well as the loss of wages and taxes to support our Nation and our City. Have we so quickly forgotten the time when we were referred to as the rust belt and would the last person who leaves the State turn out the lights?
Aggressive strategies to compete have turned us around. Tax Abatements are just another tool in our competitive arsenal and nothing more.
1. Novi’s recently enacted policy does not benefit developers. It gives a business or
corporation that makes a long term commitment of substantial financial resources a limited
abatement of a portion of taxes that they would otherwise pay. In exchange those
businesses bring jobs which have economic spin off to a community that broadens the tax
base and lessens the tax burden on the residential component of our City.
In a few years the residential component of our City will be completed. Every few years
Police, Fire and Municipal employees will expect a raise and rightly so. As the cost of living
goes up for them just as well as it does for the rest of us. If we have not broadened our tax
base whatever Council and Mayor is in office will have no option left but to turn to the
residents and raise our taxes. Is that what we want for our future?
2. Abatements are limited in duration.
3. Abatements are limited in number to no more than four (4) applicants in one (1) year will be
4. There is no guarantee that any applicant in any given year will receive abatement.
5. Abatements have been given in this City in the past. DelWal Corporation had an abatement
that ended in December 1999. They are now paying full taxes. During the life of that
abatement their payroll and number of employees grew, many of them from the Novi area.
Without that abatement they would have left the City of Novi.
6. Tax abatements do not allow for the abatement of school taxes. We have some of the finest
schools in this State and broadening the tax base will insure they will remain that way while
lessening the tax burden on our residents.
On Tuesday, May 16, 2000, the Wall Street Journal noted that "wired up firms could bestow high tech quality jobs just as easily in Dusseldorf as in Denver; being competitive is the key.
We can live in the past or confidently and competitively face the future and control our destiny rather then letting circumstances control us.
How have we come to the point in this Country when we view the businesses that provide us jobs and the means to support, feed and educate our families almost as a foreign enemy?
In 2025 there will be over 70 million Americans over the age of 65 and there will be 18 million over the age of 85. Every business that leaves our shores represents not only the loss of current wages but Social Security taxes needed to pay for an unfunded Social Security Trust Fund to provide for our seniors. I am sure that our foreign competitors are most grateful when we force our businesses and opportunities for our use to foreign shores.
Finally let me say that no one on this Council plans on giving away the store. Some members of the Council have lived in this community longer than my family and I have and we have been here for 21 years and some less. However, we all want what we feel is in the long term best interest of the approximately 50,000 residents of this community.
I urge everyone who is interested in this issue to get the facts. Pick up a copy of this policy at City Hall and familiarize yourself with it.
Before any applicant would be granted abatement there would be opportunity by way of a public hearing for additional citizen input.
Richard J. Clark, Mayor
Last Wednesday evening Mayor Clark had the opportunity along with some members of Council, School Board and the business community to be at the Husky Corporation. They opened their facility as a host to put on a demonstration of a robotics competition for the High School students in our area to encourage their participation.
At that competition was Ian McEwen, Executive Director of North American Operations for the Milford Proving Grounds of General Motors. Mayor Clark said it was very alarming when the youth in our country are dead last in math and sciences as compared to other countries. Mr. McEwen presented another startling figure. In this Country in 10 years we will be short 50,000 engineers. If we think that America will keep its competitive edge under these circumstances he thought there was a day of reckoning down the road. They saw a demonstration of what high school students in this program from Dearborn, Pontiac and two others could do. This had lead to a number of universities offering scholarships. Mayor Clark thanked the Husky Corporation and Blair Bowman because to sponsor a high school team it took approximately $5,000. Husky, a Canadian corporation, who was only the host for the evening was the first to step up to the plate and say you are half way there. They think enough of the problem to support our youths. Mr. Blair Bowman from the Novi Expo Center stepped forward and said if the Canadian Corporation can do that for our youngsters he would give the other half of the scholarship. He has staked his financial future in our city and he does not live here. In conjunction with competitive pressures, it is important to thank Husky and Blair Bowman for what they have done for our students.
Member Bononi agreed with the majority of what Mayor Clark said especially with regard to our American life and our challenges. However, she believed that healthy skepticism about our goals as a community was what they should be doing. She said true competition doesn’t need a leg up and didn’t stop a true competitor from competing. She disagreed that the policy enacted reflected all the best interests of the community. At the point that commercial developments were included we crossed the line.
Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo pointed out that the Husky Corporation came here of their own volition without any abatements.
Member Crawford concurred completely with Mayor Clark and commended his letter setting the record straight and if he could have the privilege of signing his name to the letter he would do so in a second.
Member Kramer stated it’s that kind of benevolent corporate citizen that a larger company could afford to be that Council would look upon favorably for a tax abatement.
Member Csordas agreed whole-heartedly with Mayor Clark.
8. Textron Letter withdrawing application
Member Csordas read a letter from Robert Burnham of Textron Automotive Company Inc., written June 2, 2000 into the record.
"Dear Mayor Clark:
Textron Automotive Company requests that its application for a property tax abatement, previously filed with the City be withdrawn.
It is most important to us that we maintain our planned construction timetable, breaking ground for the construction of our new Technical Center shortly. As a result of the unfortunate delays in the process of our obtaining a property tax abatement from Novi and the costs we have and will incur from such delays, we have been left with no choice but to withdraw our application for a property tax abatement and discontinue any further discussions with Novi abut our new Technical Center. Thank you for your prior assistance and consideration of our application."
Member Csordas thought this was a very unfortunate situation. A lady a couple of weeks ago made the statement that "they will come with or without a tax abatement" and this demonstrated that was definitely not the case. Here was a $55 million development that would generate minimally $700,000 per year in revenue shifting from the residents of the City to the business community of the City. It insured that the residents of this City would not receive $750,000 to improve Meadowbrook Road and north and south of that project and for the lifetime of this company being in the City it would be tens of millions of dollars that the City would not have to improve the parks, roads, etc.
Member Kramer was upset with the withdrawal of the application. The City lost $700,000 a year at an abated value and that was 8% of the general fund. $700,000 is equivalent to 3/10 of a mill on your tax bill and was all that was budgeted in next year’s budget for developing our parks. It was 25% of our road maintenance program and 54% of maintaining and improving Village Oaks Subdivision roads. This is a significant loss to the community. We must proceed to broaden our tax base for a community.
Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo reminded Council that we have subsidized the Ice Arena to the tune of $700,000.
MATTERS FOR COUNCIL ACTION – Part I
Mr. Couzens said he owned a flag lot and his neighbor, Mr. Steiner, asked to purchase the flag that goes out from his property to Nine Mile Road. When they bought the parcel he purchased a permanent easement which he had since paved that ran to the back of his property where his home is.
Mr. Couzens said the flag contains dead trees and Mr. Steiner would like to buy it and clean it up. It would be a violation of the statute. However, the purpose of the statute was to grant ingress and egress to the property. Mr. Couzens said he has permanent ingress and egress and therefore, did not believe it was necessary to have the flag.
Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo said Mr. Lemmon, City Assessor, in a memo of April 27th said that proposed Parcel A would be non-conforming and would cause a 33 foot by 356 foot parcel that would not meet any of the minimum requirements for zoning and width to depth ratios. She asked how that situation should be dealt with?
Mr. Couzens said Mr. Steiner, who was purchasing the flag, would join it with his property. It would not be built on. His lot would be a little larger and he would remove the dead trees and make the lot more presentable.
Mr. Steiner wanted to place a new shed structure in their yard and there are power lines along the back lot line and he would prefer not to build a shed back by the power lines and preferred building it closer to the house. However, according to the rules of building they have to build it 10 feet from the lot line and by adding this extra 12 feet it would allow them to position the shed a lot better.
Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo asked if it was a permanent easement? Mr. Couzens said it was permanent, recorded and insured and ran with the land.
Member Crawford thought the request was very reasonable and it would not be detrimental to the community or surrounding neighborhood. There are words to that affect in the Ordinance that if it was not the request could be granted.
CM-00-06-166 Moved by Crawford, seconded by Kramer; MOTION CARRIED:
That the appeal be granted for land division application, Parcel
50-22-32-200-021 for Jack and Susan Couzens, for property
located on the south side of Nine Mile Road west of Beck Road.
Member Kramer stated they normally did not like to support that type of construction, however it exists. He said they were proposing to trade one configuration for another that would be beneficial to both parties. He stated he would second the motion.
Member Bononi asked who owned the property to the east of Mr. Steiner and what was there?
Mr. Couzens said there was a home there.
Member Bononi would not support the motion to approve even though she thought it made a lot of sense. She was struggling with the fact that because Mr. Couzens never utilized his frontage access was irrelevant to this question. Also, the fact that the planning consultant justified an approval based on the Land Division Act was not something that she admired. Novi has its own local laws that required him to have frontage. She asked if there was any possibility he could buy the easement?
Mr. Couzens said he paid for and owned the easement.
Member Bononi was concerned that there were a lot of people in the same situation and Council would be doing this over and over again. Unless we have some regulation to offer as a vehicle to do this, that was consistent with the Ordinance, she would not support it.
Member DeRoche realized that occasionally they had to call things what they are and he would support the motion.
Roll call vote on CM-00-06-166 Yeas: Clark, Lorenzo, Crawford, Csordas, DeRoche,
CM-00-06-167 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Bononi; MOTION CARRIED:
To terminate the portion between Haggerty and Meadowbrook and to
explore the possibility of maintaining funding for the property between Novi and Meadowbrook.
Member Kramer supported the spirit of that proposal but would not support it. He wanted to leave the entire issue open. This was a poorly conceived plan and he would like to explore more creative ways to design an appropriate bike path or sidewalk that could be put in from Meadowbrook to Haggerty. If variances are needed then they should be discussed.
This section of non-motorized paths would link a major population area all the way to the Civic Center. This would allow people to circulate and allow them to go down to the commercial area at Novi and Nine Mile Road. He would like an opportunity to make it right. If residents did not agree with the new design he would support rejection.
Member Csordas asked what percentage of the entire project was the matching grant?
Mr. Nowicki said the construction costs were 80% and engineering costs, construction engineering costs and any right of way needed had to be tacked on to that.
Member Csordas said then the grant would cover less than 80% because of all the engineering, etc.
Mr. Nowicki said that was correct.
Member Csordas said for that reason he would not support the motion because he did not agree that the sidewalks should be on top of the hill or anywhere along Nine Mile Road between Meadowbrook and Haggerty. He did not know if it would be more or less for the west side of Meadowbrook and did not want to get into a much larger project.
Mayor Clark said the motion was to terminate the portion from Meadowbrook to Haggerty.
Member Csordas said he did want to terminate that. Mayor Clark thought he said he would not support the motion.
Member Csordas said only because he did not want to dump the money into the other side of the road either. Mayor Clark said they might not be able to anyway. Member Csordas said then he would support the motion.
Member Bononi thought, regarding the existing situation on the south side of Nine Mile, that this was an unbelievable proposal and considered that to be one of the most beautiful examples of berming, functioning grass swales and landscaping in the entire City. She asked who would want to destroy it? She thought the members of the community had come forward and said they are not interested in being intruded upon. This is an important part of this whole program that from the standpoint of buy in of the citizens who’s backyards might abut these indiffering scenarios have a real potential of having their privacy intruded upon. She would not doubt that their property values might be affected. She thought a town hall meeting with regard to what the plan was so everyone could have the information up front and decide if they wanted to go in another direction. If we don’t want to sacrifice this funding we don’t have to but it is not up to Council to decide where these are going to be without input from our citizens.
Member Bononi would also want information brought forward that would have usage numbers with regard to what Council perceived the actual use of these paths would be. She was looking for the practicalities here and would not support anything that would destroy that beautiful south side of Nine Mile. She would support the motion and thought all kinds of creative things could be done.
Member Crawford said no matter how people felt about the motion there was no one on Council that wanted to put an 8-foot bike path on top of a berm. He concurred with a lot of Member Kramer’s statements and hated to not explore the possibility of Meadowbrook to Haggerty. There could be some potential in there. He would support the motion because he did not want to lose the opportunity to do something between Meadowbrook and Novi Road but hoped with more citizen input there might be something that could be done to continue a non-motorized pathway all the way to Haggerty Road. Member Kramer and Andrew Mutch’s comment were very valid.
Mayor Clark stated Member Bononi made very pertinent comments regarding the berm. He was in favor of this motion and recognized that not every part of the City had to be paved over and connected by 8 feet of asphalt. Many of the areas with 8 feet of asphalt are in horrendous condition and may be that money should be used to repair and replace some of those that are already put in that we can not maintain now before we pave more of our City.
Roll call vote on CM-00-06-167 Yeas: Lorenzo, Bononi, Crawford, Csordas,
CM-00-06-168 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Crawford; MOTION CARRIED:
To adopt the Resolution vacating Erma Street from Novi Road
westerly to terminus.
Roll call vote on CM-00-06-168 Yeas: Bononi, Crawford, Csordas, DeRoche, Clark,
4. Request for approval of variance from Design & Construction Standards -paving of
secondary access for Beck North Corporate Park
Matt Quinn, representing Northern Equities Group, was present to request a waiver from the Design and Construction Standards regarding a recently passed Ordinance requiring a secondary access to be paved. He noted the first phase, which fronted West Road, had been submitted through the Planning Commission. He said 25 of the 29 lots had been committed to. Currently they were paving Hudson Drive to the south. They are proposing to gravel the rest of the road temporarily until they are in a position to pave it. Phase 2 would be submitted to the City in the next 60 days or so and they hoped to begin construction of the underground by the end of this year on this proposed roadway. It would not make sense for them to pave that road now and then tear it up again to put the utilities underneath that roadway. Northern Equities would build this temporary road to the requirement that the old ordinance had.
Mayor Clark assumed if approval were granted that they would have no objection that it would be subject to posting a bond and setting a deadline for paving of the secondary access road. Mr. Quinn said sure.
Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo thought they had revisited this issue and proposed that there would not be any variances allowed.
Mr. Watson stated there were two ordinances before Council; one dealing with paving of secondary access and the second dealing with variances was not adopted.
She would support the motion if there was a bond and a deadline and all the requirements and conditions of the Fire Marshall were met.
Mr. Quinn said a two year time period was fine.
Member Crawford said one of the conditions of the Fire Marshall was that the road was properly maintained in all seasons and felt this should also be in the agreement.
Mr. Quinn said they would plow it in the wintertime.
Mr. Watson said assuming that is a condition of the Fire Marshal’s letter Council would make all of his conditions a part of the motion.
Member Bononi asked with regard to phasing of this project and the fact that the road would be gravel would there be any liability concerns with regard to the issuance of building permits so that one could be a hinge to determine when this road had to be built. She was concerned about actual liability of access to a site even when a building was being constructed prior to the award of the Certificate of Occupancy.
Mr. Watson said the City would not have a liability problem. It would be the person constructing the building that might have an issue if it were not accessible. In any case before the building department would issue a building permit it had to be accessible to a road
Member Bononi asked if he was concerned about emergency vehicles getting there?
Mr. Watson said no. They have to maintain the temporary access and do all the things to keep it open.
Member Bononi asked when is this road constructed with regard to the potential building of Phase II?
Mr. Watson said before any building. It would be paved before Phase II.
Member Bononi said if that was the condition she would support it.
Member DeRoche felt this was a unique situation and he would support the motion with the conditions.
CM-00-06-169 Moved by Csordas, seconded by DeRoche; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve variance from Design and Construction Standards, paving of secondary access for Beck North Corporate Park including all comments and requests from City Council.
Roll call vote on CM-00-06-169 Yeas: Crawford, Csordas, DeRoche, Kramer,
Clark, Lorenzo, Bononi
5. Adoption of a Resolution Scheduling a Public Hearing on June 19, 2000 for the
Establishment of an Industrial Development District (Textron Automotive Co. Tax
Removed by Mr. Helwig per legal counsel.
6. Adopt a Resolution to Schedule a Public Hearing on June 19, 2000 for the issuance of
an Industrial Facilities Exemption Certificate (Textron Automotive Co. Tax Abatement
Removed by Mr. Helwig per legal counsel.
Toni Nagy thanked Council for vote on Nine Mile bike path between Haggerty and Meadowbrook and appreciated comments regarding the use of this money for existing asphalt. She thought it was a good idea to repair the existing asphalt instead of putting something new in and it would be fiscally responsible. She suggested, regarding the 12 Mile Road medians, that Council make use of the retainer and employ a landscape designer to do a landscape design with the existing live trees and whatever else could be put in.
Debbie Bundoff, Novi and 12 Mile Road advised Council, for the last time, of her address, which is P.O. Box 7054 Novi 48376-7054. She was glad to hear the 12 Mile Road update and that it was not finished. She had been waiting for an update. Ms. Bundoff said the City filed a permit months ago, and the State of Michigan sent her a copy of the permit. The State of Michigan thought the City or the Mall owned her front yard due to an incomplete application. This City was requesting a permit that asked for over 18,000 feet of her front yard to be filled. They gave the property owner 20 days to respond to something that this City gave an inaccurate mailing address to. She asked the City to call the D.E.Q. and get a hold on Permit # 00630135P because there was only a couple days left to OK that permit. She spoke with Todd at the Livonia Office of the DEQ and he said the information she got was all he received.
Mayor Clark asked Mr. Helwig to follow up on this and he said he would.
Sarah Gray, 133 Maudlin, thanked Council for their vote on the vacation of Erma Street. She urged Council to work with the party store to get parking in the back and to require a plan be submitted. She asked that the occupancy permit for the bar on corner be checked. Ms. Gray did not like the idea of putting cell towers on city parkland and did not think they belonged in residentially owned areas. The Ice arena area was ok.
MATTERS FOR COUNCIL ACTION – Part II
7. Adoption of Zoning Map Amendment 18.592B (Jaguar)-Proposed rezoning from Office
Service District (OS-2) to General Business District (B-3) or any other appropriate
zoning district of 3.9 acres in Section 24, located north of Ten Mile and west of
Mayor Clark had a request from Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo that would require a ruling from Mr. Watson due to the fact that the Ford Motor Company employed her husband.
Mr. Watson stated the fact that Mr. Lorenzo worked for Ford would not fall within the category the City Charter referred to. There must be a financial interest of at least 10% stock ownership. There was a procedure if a member preferred not to vote it would be allowed with unanimous consent of Council.
Member DeRoche did not think it was an unreasonable request.
Mayor Clark asked if anyone opposed the request?
Member Crawford did not think it was a conflict of interest and it was so far removed that he would not support it.
Mr. Watson said there was an alternate provision in the Charter and that is the Council Member requesting to abstain from the vote could request that the matter be tabled until the next meeting of Council. The request for postponement may be denied by a vote of Council in which event such member would not be required to vote. If Council denies the request to postpone Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo would be excused from voting on the matter. If it is tabled to the following meeting the member is required to vote again unless excused by unanimous consent of the remaining members present.
CM-00-06-170 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Bononi;
To postpone this item until the next meeting.
Member Crawford would not support the motion because he thought it was incumbent upon Council to address this issue and vote on it.
Roll call vote on CM-00-06-170 Yeas: None
Nays: Csordas, DeRoche, Kramer, Lorenzo,
Clark, Bononi, Crawford
Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo left the room at 11:30 p.m. as she requested the item be tabled until next meeting, her request was unanimously denied and that allowed her to abstain from the vote.
Timothy Stolker, Representative of Ford Motor Land Services Corporation along with Providence is the applicant requesting rezoning of land approximately 3.4 net acres at the northwest corner of Haggerty and Ten Mile. Also present was Nancy Conyers on behalf of the Conyers Family that would be operating the proposed dealership at this location. Mr. Stolker introduced from the Ford Motor Company, Mr. Sebastianani and Mr. Wiggins, Tony Dellicolli-Architect and Mimi Sales who helped locate the property.
The property is approximately 10.5 acres and located at the northwest corner of Ten Mile and Haggerty. They believe the site is compatible with the surrounding uses and zoning patterns. It has excellent exposure. The Jaguar brand sale has increased 29% within this Country and they believe it will continue. This site would form the prototype site for the Jaguar and Premiere Dealership for the United States. He said this site at the 3.4 acres with the 27,000 sq. ft. building would not house more than 60-80 pre-owned and new vehicles. The zoning pattern to the south is a combination of B-1 and included OS –1 as well. To the west on the site it is OS-2 which included the medical building, parking lot and the remaining 200 foot of frontage. All OS-1 and Olde Orchard condos are 1200 feet from the proposed B-3 and 1600 feet from the corner of Haggerty to the corner of Olde Orchard. The only concerns expressed were from Old Orchard. They did meet with legal counsel for Olde Orchard Condominiums prior to the Planning Commission hearing. They asked to meet with the board and were told the board did not feel a meeting was necessary since they were not formally objecting. Since then there seemed to be concern raised and a petition was circulated. They made special effort to communicate with residents of Old Orchard and they did that last Thursday night. They showed the physical connection between Old Orchard and the site. He showed photos to their residents and Council looking west from the portion of B-3 and from the highest elevation on the 3.4 acres location. It showed the existing Medical Office Building on the site and the parking lot, all of which would remain in OS-2. Then there was the tree line and if looking very carefully the roofline of the nearest Brookside building is visible. Beyond that there would be no visible contact with any buildings. He drove into the site and looked directly due east. Driving into Olde Orchard the parking areas are divided A, B and C and they tried to focus on those courts. Parking Lot A is the nearest one to Ten Mile, then there is a recreational area and looking east from the parking lot areas there is an extensive tree line and looking very carefully part of the Brookside Building located on the west portion of Karim Road would be visible. Looking northwest of Karim is the Brookside parking lot and along the left border are fully mature evergreens within a developed area between here and the condominiums. To the right is another tree line between there and the Brookside Office Building.
Karim, looking due north, is the portion that is the development line between Olde Orchard and the OS-2 on the right hand side. It is all developed with mature trees and has Brookside to the west and east. There is also a natural features area because there is a drain running through there that is not developable and that natural features area would have to be retained and could not be touched. It would have nothing to do with the subject site as it was all to the west of that.
He showed, looking due east, the Olde Orchard ingress and egress on the north side of Ten Mile. The most westerly boundary of the proposed B-3 Zoning would be 1,200 feet from this location and Haggerty would be approximately 1,600 ft. from this location. The last photo was the most easterly Brookside Parking Lot; this is the building on the east side of Karim, their backyard looking towards their site. It is developed and their building goes all the way to the property line and their property line is on the other side. Again, natural drainage and features that would be retained. That is looking at the closest property owner to the subject property and that is the OS-1. Again, very difficult to visualize.
They showed the photos to provide the transitions from B-3 to OS-1 to OS-2 and visually speaking there was no impact. There would be no negative physical or zoning impact. They felt it would be a normal transition and would be compatible and would not be in conflict with other surrounding uses.
They also looked at the loss of the OS-2 and how it played with the Master Plan and the gain of the B-3. On page 73 of the Master Plan it is stated that in this particular community while you do have a strong precedence of major comparison retail shopping you do have a need for additional convenience commercial shopping or community commercial shopping. It seems there is a need for that because there is not sufficient commercial zoning as we are talking about here. It does not say how much more was needed just that it was needed. That was what the B-3 zoning classification was about and was why they wanted to be here. Novi is the target community where they want to be. It is the type of zoning that the Master Plan indicated there was some need for within the community. Right now Office Planned within the City was 9.4% of the landmass. Community Commercial was 214.6 acres or only 1.1% of the landmass within the city.
What they are asking to transfer over from Office Planned to B-3 is 3.4 acres of usable land with minimal impact. In fact, there is sufficient OS-1 yet to be developed in that area and there is more than sufficient land for that. The fact this site has been vacant for so long, except for the 24,000 sq. ft. building, indicated that the frontage of the site would be more appropriately zoned B-3 then the current OS-2. As part of the planning submittal they submitted a traffic study with no negative impact from a traffic safety standpoint or any other standpoint by the zoning of the site to B-3 and considering the proposed use. Compared to what was previously proposed there this is a far less intense traffic use then anything under the OS-2. There are no wetlands or woodlands.
The issue raised by Olde Orchard was the impact for potential rezoning of the balance of the property. What they are talking about is the 3.4 acres primarily fronting Haggerty with a small 9/10 portion fronting Ten Mile location to allow for the type of use being proposed. If any other zoning comes before Council it would be subject to staff review, Planning Commission review and recommendation and City Council review and recommendation. As stated to the community in our letter they had no development plans for the remaining portion of that site. Once this was built there would only be 200 foot of frontage on Ten Mile that would be available for development.
In addition, any future development that went there would be compatible with what Ford wanted for the site. They would own the property and they would not want anything on that site that was not compatible with a multi-million dollar investment for a prototype store that would be the demonstration for the rest of the country.
The fact that B-3 zoning was appropriate at this location was the issue before Council. From a retail standpoint the frontage on Haggerty and on Ten Mile was the best property. What was remaining was interior property and right now it would remain OS-2 and with the medical office there it would remain in the OS-2 standpoint.
The other petition comment was traffic and he felt that had been addressed. The City traffic studies confirmed their traffic studies that the proposed use was less intense then what could have been developed on the 10.1 acres.
Mr. Stolker advised Council Mr. Dellicolli would discuss the preliminary site plan.
Mayor Clark said they would address the rezoning aspect of this proposal.
Mr. Dellicolli said the Planning Commission as part of the approval process, said that any approval for whatever was done from a rezoning standpoint was under the stipulation that the curb cut on Haggerty would be as currently exists. Also, they would eliminate any curb cut on Ten Mile to what was shown on the site plan and there would be no other curb cut on Ten Mile for the future development of that site.
Mayor Clark asked if the proposal included a second curb cut on Ten Mile in addition to the existing one to allow access to the medical site?
Mr. Dellicolli said the Planning Commission said there would be no more than one additional curb cut on Ten Mile. Mayor Clark noted then there would be two. Mr. Dellicolli said yes.
Mayor Clark said the site was approximately 3.4 acres and the report from Reed, Cool and Michalski, Traffic Engineers, talked about developing 2.74 acres and asked why there was a need for the additional 3.4? Mr. Dellicolli’s response was it would be 9/10ths of an acre on Ten Mile. It would provide the flexibility based on types of automobiles sold and more than one brand of premier automobile could be sold from one building and one parcel.
Mayor Clark asked if there was only one access off 10 Mile could they use that road then internally put another access road on their own property heading east? Mr. Dellicolli said the difficulty with that was because of the retaining of the OS-2 on the interior piece is the setback requirements that pertain to being able to set the buildings appropriately and being able to provide the necessary landscaped front.
Mayor Clark asked if the site was granted B-3 on the Haggerty frontage only and limited to the one existing road off of 10 Mile could the frontage being proposed for the rezoning be left in the OS-2 but still be used as part of their landscape area? He was concerned about wrapping B-3
around that corner and landlocking the parcel. At some point in time someone could come in and request that the rest of the property be made B-3 and then that 10 acre site could be loaded with commercial. He asked that they leave it in the designation as OS-2 rather than B-3.
Mr. Watson said it might present a problem because it was an auto dealership and they were using the OS property for out of dealership use.
Mr. Stolker said the Planning Commission raised that issue. The OS-2 parcel from Ten Mile could not be landlocked. It could have its own ingress and egress and could live on its own. That was why the Planning Commission asked them to live with the one curb cut on Ten Mile separate from the curb cut at that location. Secondly, the drive coming off of Haggerty Road was a common drive accessing the balance of the property so there are two drives into the OS-2 property which would prevent it from being landlocked or undevelopable.
Member Kramer said the curb cut could be moved to the east and it could be a common drive, which would serve their facility as well as the office. He thought the rest of the discussion was reasonable. His major concern was traffic impact on Ten Mile and asked that they keep oriented towards Haggerty and not add an extra curb cut on Ten Mile he could support the zoning.
Member Crawford worried if they could not sustain the business it would be left with B-3 zoning and he did not want to see a strip mall on the corner. Is there anyway to insure Council that if the business was not there it would not be B-3 zoning?
Mr. Watson noted there had been cases in Michigan that allowed conditions to be attached to rezonings. However, they had dealt with things like buffering and site issues to protect adjacent properties. They have not dealt with restricting to a particular use.
Mr. Stolker said the practical answer was they were still only talking about 3.4 acres of B-3 as opposed to a whole 10 acres of whatever might be developed in one common large commercial development. He said 3.4 acres at this corner would not be adverse to the surrounding area.
At Meadowbrook and Ten Mile there is a larger B-3 surrounded by multi-family, next to OS-1. It is zoned and Master Planned that way and it told him the experience there has been fine because if not the Master Plan would reflect something else in the future other than the commercial zoning they are asking for. Haggerty is a major thoroughfare at this location and the zoning patterns there are B-3 patterns. He felt OS-2 was not an appropriate designation or it would have been there. By doing this the property would be divided up in a manner that Council could control in stages of development as opposed to one large site.
Member Bononi had read in the Planning Commission minutes that the applicant was encouraged to proceed with this site and asked Mr. Wahl if they were talking about a consistent practice of suggesting to applicants that they bring forward uses not consistent with the Master Plan. Mr. Wahl stated the Master Plan was a guideline and it was their judgment that this proposal was compatible with surrounding activities that were Master Planned for Commercial uses and other sites on Grand River were not. Therefore, this was the only site that they felt had reasonable comfort with the existing Master Plan.
Member Bononi did not believe there was no other reasonable location and said it was disturbing to her that the Master Plan was used as a weapon or not according to a circumstance. Mr. Arroyo’s letter dated April 25th under his Summary of Significant Findings, Item #1 said, "the proposed B-3 rezoning request is not specifically consistent with the proposed office designation found in the Master Plan. However, it is generally consistent with future land use." She said either it is consistent or it isn’t. She was looking for professional opinions that would be consistent with the Master Plan. This Master Plan was just updated. She asked if they have an option or own the property. Mr. Stolker said they have a Purchase Agreement to buy the entire parcel. Member Bononi was also concerned about adaptive reuse and the density to which the entire parcel that would be B-3 could be developed was significantly different from OS-2. There are physical differences between OS-2 and B-3. She never heard of a planning defense used with regard to a rezoning because it could not be seen.
She was concerned that if they had OS-2 they would be more likely to have open space with regard to setback requirements. If B-3, with regard to an automobile franchise, there was likely there would be more noise, automotive fumes, more chemicals on site, spills, etc. It was more likely to be extreme differences in topographic plans between an OS-2 proposal as opposed to this use that just required a tabletop. This is not a suitable transition; it is not reflective of the community, which held the line on previous proposals and the Master Plan.
CM-00-06- Moved by Bononi, seconded by
To deny Zoning Map Amendment 18.592.
Motion died for lack of second
Member DeRoche did not want any more curb cuts and did not want to change the character of Ten Mile. He hoped the motion would include the restrictions that the City needed to protect the citizens. This car dealership would have a different type of traffic and noise, paging systems, bay doors, etc. and would be different from a shop that had 600-800 cars. This would be about the least intrusive impact on this corner.
CM-00-06-171 Moved by DeRoche, seconded by Csordas; MOTION CARRIED:
To adopt Zoning Map Amendment 18.592 B with the following
restrictions: There would be no additional curb cuts on Haggerty
Road or Ten Mile Road to go into the site.
Mayor Clark indicated he would like to see Jaguar in Novi too but he had real and legitimate concerns with that B-3 coming in at Ten Mile Road. He stated he could not support the motion.
Roll Call vote on CM-00-06-171 Yeas: DeRoche, Kramer, Crawford, Csordas
Nays: Clark, Bononi
8. Consideration of Request to Vacate a portion of Maudlin Street adjacent to Lots 49,
50, 51 of Idlemere Park Subdivision with authorization for staff and consultant to
review and prepare vacating Resolution.
CM-00-06-171 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Kramer; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To authorize staff and consultants to review and prepare vacating
Resolution for a portion of Maudlin Street adjacent to Lots 49, 50 and
51 of Idlemere Park Subdivision.
Roll call vote on CM-00-06-171 Yeas: Kramer, Lorenzo, Bononi, Crawford, Csordas,
9. Introduction of Resolution vacating a portion of Elm Court and setting a Public
Hearing for July 10, 2000
CM-00-06-172 Moved by Kramer, seconded by Crawford; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve introduction of Resolution vacating a portion of Elm Court and set a Public Hearing for July 10, 2000.
Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo asked that when this came forward on July 10th that Council has the information provided to them with regard to Mr. Korte’s comments this evening in terms of buildable property.
Roll call vote on CM-00-06-172 Yeas: Clark, Lorenzo, Bononi, Crawford, Csordas,
Crawford, DeRoche, Kramer
10. Introduction of Thornton Creek Elementary School Tornado Siren Site and
scheduling of a Public Hearing for June 19, 2000.
CM-00-06-173 Moved by Crawford, seconded by Kramer; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To introduce the Thornton Creek Elementary School Tornado Siren Site and schedule a Public Hearing for June 19, 2000.
Roll call vote on CM-00-06-173 Yeas: Lorenzo, Bononi, Crawford, Csordas,
DeRoche, Kramer, Clark
11. Adoption of Ordinance No. 18.161-To amend subpart 2503.2E(2) of Ordinance No. 97-
18, as amended, the City of Novi Zoning Ordinance, to revise the height limitations
pertaining to roof top appurtenances – 1st & 2nd Reading & Adoption.
CM-00-06-174 Moved by Csordas, seconded by DeRoche; MOTION CARRIED:
To approve Zoning Ordinance Text Amendment 18.161 First Reading to amend Subpart 2503.2E(2) of Ordinance No. 97-18, as amended, the
City of Novi Zoning Ordinance, to revise the height limitations pertaining to roof top appurtenances.
Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo would not support the motion because the process to deal with this was to go to the Zoning Board of Appeals and prove a hardship.
Member Bononi concurred with Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo and would not support the motion.
Roll call vote on CM-00-06-174 Yeas: Crawford, Csordas, DeRoche, Kramer
Nays: Lorenzo, Clark, Bononi
12. Adoption of Ordinance No. 2000-163-to add Article V to Chapter 25 of the Novi Code
of Ordinances to create a City of Novi Ice Arena Committee and proposed Resolution
to appoint members to an Ice Arena Committee – 1st Reading
CM-00-06-175 Moved by Crawford, seconded by Kramer; MOTION CARRIED:
To approve First reading of proposed Ordinance No. 2000.163 – To add Article V to Chapter 25 of the NoviCode of Ordinances to create a City of Novi Ice Arena Committee excluding membership list.
Member Csordas did not have a problem with the Resolution. He was concerned that a couple of members of the committee were members of the Skating Committee and the Hockey Association, which meant they might have issues regarding the purchasing of ice time. He thought if they were on an organization that purchases ice time and they sit on a board that set the ice time fees it was potential for conflict of interest. He asked for confirmation if any of these people were on the two mentioned committees.
Member Crawford said two members, Mr. Jaussi and Mr. Senter, who were honored tonight with presentations of appreciation. They were excellent members of this board and it was those kinds of people who should be on the board so there was input from figure skaters and hockey players. Council controlled who was appointed to the board and it would be Council’s prerogative not to appoint someone who was actively involved in one of those arenas. The management company sets the ice time fees; board members are residents of the City and are strictly an advisory committee.
Member DeRoche suggested when this came back for final adoption Council should consider separating the two.
Member Crawford revised his motion to exclude the membership to be discussed at a future date.
Member Kramer said the motion did not indicate the letter from Fried, Watson and Bugbee indicating the purpose of the creation of the committee was to replace existing Community Clubs Non-profit Corporation. They needed to sunset Community Clubs and the motion verbiage did not say that.
Member Crawford thought this motion would do that.
Mayor Clark said when Council was ready to appoint the members of the committee they could eliminate the other by motion. Mr. Watson said they could give legal counsel direction to do that.
Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo would not support the motion. She did not think another committee or layer of bureaucracy was needed for the Ice Arena.
Member Bononi would support the motion and would like to leave the participation in this committee up to anyone who would like to apply.
Roll call vote on CM-00-06-175 Yeas: Crawford, Csordas, DeRoche, Kramer, Clark,
13. Adoption of Resolution creating Civic Center Complex Task Force
CM-00-06-176 Moved by DeRoche, seconded by Kramer: MOTION CARRIED:
To adopt a Resolution creating a Civic Center Complex Task Force
deleting any reference to the high school.
Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo would not support the motion as the Resolution was worded. It made reference to City Council consensus and agreements that Council did not agree to at the previous meeting by form of motion. Specifically relating to a high school not being located on the property south of the high school nor did Council agree on placing the library facility proposal on a August 2001 ballot. If those items are removed and the 5th WHEREAS stated that "WHEREAS at the May 15th, 2000 City Council meeting the City Council directed that the Taft Road site south of the High School not be included as a possible location for the Library."
Mayor Clark noted it would not make a difference because the library could proceed on a petition drive and have it placed on the ballot anyway. Council discussed this at length, they understood where Council was coming from and he did not see anything wrong with having it in there because they could do it anyway. Long before next August Council would deal with the study the task force would bring back in, approximately, September and Council would then move expeditiously. He wanted to leave the language in just as it was.
Member Bononi concurred with Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo stating she took commitments Council made seriously and whether or not it could be supplanted by another action she felt that venue should be left free of encumbrance. She would like it to be removed as well.
CM-00-06-177 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Bononi; MOTION FAILED:
To amend the motion to delete everything after the word "Library" and the fifth WHEREAS.
Member DeRoche made the motion and was somewhat persuaded by Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo’s comments and would trust in the Mayor’s leadership. It is an artificial date; it took a separate act of Council at some time to put it on the ballot and/or pursue other mechanisms to do it. What it did do was call a spade a spade, which our citizenry often got mad at the Council for doing. If the intent is they were working on a project that they wanted to put on the ballot then say "we are working on it to put it on the ballot". Then the citizens would know that the task force was pursuing putting this on the ballot within the next year. He would support his motion as originally stated.
Member Crawford suggested the high school should be eliminated because that was not discussed and that it be reworded to say "the intent of the City Council is to put a library facility proposal on the August 2001 ballot." He thought a promise was made to the citizens and the Library Board that Council would very strongly look at, if not put it on the ballot in August. It showed direction and intent without a hard commitment to put it on that ballot.
Mayor Clark thought it had been danced around long enough.
Member Kramer would support the amendment. The purpose of this was to create a task force to master plan the area.
Roll call vote on CM-00-06-177 Yeas: Kramer, Lorenzo, Bononi,
Nays: Csordas, DeRoche, Clark, Crawford
CM-00-06-178 Moved by Crawford, seconded by Csordas; MOTION CARRIED:
To delete any reference to the high school.
Roll call vote on CM-00-06-178 Yeas: DeRoche, Kramer, Lorenzo, Clark, Bononi,
Roll call vote on CM-00-06-176 Yeas: Kramer, Clark, Crawford, Csordas, DeRoche
Main Motion Nays: Lorenzo, Bononi
CONSENT AGENDA REMOVALS FOR COUNCIL ACTION
B. Schedule Executive Session for June 19, 2000 immediately following the meeting for
the purpose of discussing pending litigation – Removed by Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo
CM-00-06-179 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Bononi; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To schedule an Executive Session for June 19, 2000 at 7 PM.
Vote on CM-00-06-179 Yeas: Clark, Bononi, Crawford, Csordas, DeRoche, Kramer,
G. Approval of Resolution adopting 2.3% pass-through water rate increases for all bills
rendered after July 1, 2000 – Removed by Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo
Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo felt there wasn’t sufficient justification for passing this water rate increase. She requested a more detailed explanation on what the policy and philosophy
Was and why the 2.3% pass through was not absorbed.
CM-00-06-180 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Bononi; MOTION CARRIED:
To postpone the Resolution regarding pass through water rate
Member Crawford asked Mr. Nowicki to address this.
Mr. Nowicki stated he would provide the information requested.
Ms. Smith-Roy stated they were not in a position to evaluate the entire water rate system. She said it could wait until next year when they receive the increases and they would evaluate it then and put the increases together at one time.
Mayor Clark said then we might be telling the residents 4.6 rather than 2.3. Ms. Smith-Roy said yes.
Member Crawford asked if this could wait until next year why is it here now?
Ms. Smith-Roy said they were passing along the rate increase that had been given to the City for the purchase of the water.
Member Crawford noted this was what was typically done because we do not mark it up that much so whatever our cost was it had to be passed along instead of the City paying it.
Ms. Smith-Roy stated that was true. What was done was every two or three years the entire water and sewer fund was evaluated and it was determined whether there would be additional increases besides the pass through amount.
Member Crawford stated if it was just an increase from Detroit we are not in a position to pay 2.3% and he would rather do it incrementally instead of 5% next year.
Mayor Clark noted it was too bad the City lost $700,000 because we might have been able to pay it.
Member Csordas reiterated Mayor Clark. He saw no point in postponing an increase to the City to double the increase potentially next year. Whatever the percentage of increase is if it is not passed along then the City would go in the hole. Mayor Pro Tem Lorenzo said the City absorbed it last year so why not this year? Member Csordas said he did not want to absorb it anymore.
Mr. Helwig apologized for the confusion on this matter. Every community he dealt with when the central city passed along a rate increase they did not go into the business of subsidizing the increase. This is a user charger and the fairest means of financing almost anything in local government. He was not in favor of waiting a year if it was truly a pass through rate. If Council wanted verification this was 100% pass through they would bring it back.
Mayor Clark suggested bringing this back as an action item at June 19th meeting. Mr. Helwig stated that he would be happy to.
Member DeRoche asked if this could then be on the Consent Agenda if Mr. Helwig provided the information in the packet? Mayor Clark said yes.
Vote on CM-00-06-180 Yeas: Clark, Bononi, Csordas, DeRoche, Kramer, Lorenzo
AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION - None
Member Bononi thanked Ms. Malone for the City Seal on the podium.
CM-00-06-181 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Bononi; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To adjourn the meeting at 1:01.
Vote on CM-00-06-181 Yeas: Clark, Bononi, Crawford, Csordas, DeRoche, Kramer,
Richard J. Clark, Mayor Maryanne Cornelius, City Clerk
Transcribed by: ______________________________
Charlene Mc Lean
Date approved: June 19, 2000