View Agenda for this meeting

REGULAR MEETING OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF NOVI
DRAFT Ė TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 12, 2002
NOVI CIVIC CENTER - COUNCIL CHAMBERS Ė 45175 W. TEN MILE ROAD

Mayor Clark called the meeting to order at 7:30 PM.

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE Cub Scout Pack #240

Leader: Nancy Kaindall

Members: Eddie Coury, Ben Diaz, Kevin Fritzges, Cole Irvine, Ryan Jok, Matthew Kaindl, John Kern, Thomas Symanski, Mark Wagner

ROLL CALL Mayor Clark, Mayor Pro Tem Bononi, Council Members Capello, Csordas, DeRoche Ė arrived late, Landry, Lorenzo

APPROVAL OF AGENDA

Member Lorenzo deleted Bradford II under Mayor and Council Issues. She also added to Mayor and Council Issues Ė Extension of the Landon Companies violation for wetland cleanup behind Target.

Member Landry asked that Item #6, Consideration of hiring one to three police officers, be addressed after Item #14 on Matter for Council Action II so Member DeRoche would be present.

CM-02-11-299 Moved by Csordas, seconded by Lorenzo; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:

To approve the agenda as amended.

Vote on CM-02-11-299 Yeas: Clark, Bononi, Capello, Csordas, Landry, Lorenzo

Nays: None

Absent: DeRoche

SPECIAL REPORTS - None

COMMITTEE REPORTS

Time Warner Franchise Transfer Request Ė South West Oakland Cable Commission (SWOCC) Ė Member Csordas

Member Csordas advised there had been a meeting of SWOCC last Thursday. Originally the intent for this was for Member Csordas to recommend that Council not approve the transfer of the franchise agreement to the subsequent owners. As a result of SWOCC meeting with representatives of Time Warner prior to the meeting they ended two years of bickering and $20,000 spent on attorneys. There were three issues that were a problem. One was the charge for the basic service, which is about seven or ten channels as one side was saying it should cost $12.00 and the other side said it should be $9.08 for the 500 customers who had it. That would be some money but not enough to delay this process. There was also an independent audit commissioned by SWOCC to look at commissions paid to SWOCC to support the organization. The audit said that Time Warner owed $96,000 and they said their audit said they owed $15,000. The audit settlement was $45,000 and the Basic fee will be $11.00 for 2003-2004. Member Csordas

 

said he would come back to ask for a recommendation to transfer the franchise agreement.

PRESENTATIONS

Community Service Appreciation Plaque Ė Dennis Colligan-Parks, Recreation &

Forestry Commission

Mayor Clark presented a Community Service Appreciation Plaque to Dennis Colligan of the Parks, Recreation and Forestry Commission in recognition of his dedicated service to the community. Mr. Colligan said he appreciated the plaque and the opportunity to serve the City for 11 years and would continue to serve the City in a different capacity.

PUBLIC HEARINGS

1. Special Assessment District No.162 Ė Pioneer Meadows Subdivision Sanitary Sewer

2. Special Assessment District No.163 Ė Pioneer Meadows Subdivision Water Main

There were no public comments on either item and Mayor Clark closed the public hearings.

REPORTS

CITY MANAGER

Mr. Helwig said they had scheduled this Saturday morning, November 16th, from 8:30 a.m. until noon a continuation of City Councils development update of short and long term goals to the extent that Council could bring their short and long term goal suggestions. It would help to reach consensus on those to be added and to set priorities.

DEPARTMENT REPORTS - None

ATTORNEY

Mr. Fisher advised Council of the options available to fill the position that is going to be vacated by Member DeRoche. The first option is that under the Charter, the Council, by majority vote, which would be four votes, can appoint a replacement within thirty days of the date of the vacancy. The vacancy would be the date that Member DeRoche left this office. The second option arises in the event that Council does not make that appointment then the vacancy would be filled by a special election that would be called by the City and duly noticed by the Clerkís office.

Also, several meetings ago he brought to the Councilís attention the prospect of adopting a fee recovery ordinance that would require those people coming to the City to reimburse the City for its expenses incurred for reviewing an application or petition that is filed. He suggested that one means to move that along would be a referral to the Ordinance Review Committee for a more specific recommendation.

CM-02-11-300 Moved by Bononi, seconded by Lorenzo,

To refer the Fee Recovery Ordinance to the Ordinance Review

Committee for more specific recommendations.

DISCUSSION

Member Capello asked if the alternatives were to run the civil fines through the judgment through the District Court or to just run the civil fines ourselves without any enforcement ability through the District Court. Mr. Fisher said that would be a separate ordinance that could be referred at the same time. He said Member Capello was referring to the civil infraction authorization to collect those fines at a bureau within the City. He would be happy to provide that ordinance as well. Member Capello thought the Ordinance Review Committee was too far behind and too bogged down and would prefer that it come to Council. It is more of a policy issue than language in an ordinance. Once Council determines policy wise that they want to do this and which avenue they want to go, either the civil infraction avenue or through a judgment assessment through the District Court he thought the language of the ordinance would be fairly simple. He thought the policy decision should be made first at the Council level not at the Ordinance Review level. He would oppose the motion and hope that it would come back to Council within the next 30 days.

Mayor Clark said something of this importance could be made number one on any Ordinance Review Committee agenda and we wouldnít be making a decision but would be making a recommendation of the full Council. If it was referred to Ordinance Review and it was on the next Council agenda they would make it item #1 and it would come back to Council the following meeting. The Council could accept the recommendation, reject it or modify it at the Council meeting.

Member Capello thought it would be more efficient if the Council made the recommendation to Ordinance Review and they knew what direction the Council as a whole wanted to go. He thought they needed to go the civil infraction way because they would be spinning their wheels going in any other direction. He felt Council could handle this in 15 minutes at the Council level and have it done in the next 45 days and start collecting revenue immediately. If it goes to Ordinance Review he thought Council wouldnít see it back for nine months. Mayor Clark said if it went to Ordinance Review they would make it Item #1 and it would be back to Council at the next meeting.

Member Landry asked if once it came out of Ordinance Review and was back before Council changes could be made and it wouldnít have to go back again to Ordinance Review? Mayor Clark said it would not have to go back.

Roll call vote on CM-02-11-300 Yeas: Clark, Bononi, Csordas, Landry, Lorenzo

Nays: Capello

Absent: DeRoche

 

Mayor Clark asked Mr. Fisher to schedule this for the next Ordinance Review Committee meeting and return it to Council at the next meeting. Mr. Fisher agreed and said there would be two documents for them.

Mr. Fisher said it had come to his attention that some citizens within the community had been laboring under the assumption that for some reason the Mayor has the power to waive penalties and interest on late tax payments. Mr. Fisher said that is a matter of

State Statute and although the legislature does a lot of things that canít be predicted they have not given the Mayor the authority to waive penalties and interest.

Mr. Fisher said the next item is related to the Sandstone matter and particularly the obligation of the City for remediation of a portion of the Sandstone property. Essentially, the obligation of the City is remediation of the land to a particular standard. It is not necessarily a fixed standard or number but depends on what the natural conditions are at the site. Our expert made a determination of what that standard should be, submitted a proposal to MDEQ and they reviewed the methodology in a detailed report and accepted the expertís suggestion in that regard. It has not been within the purview of agreement of Sandstone and they have objected to the standard that has been agreed upon by DEQ. Consequently, it leaves us in a position if there is going to be an ongoing objection later on by Sandstone and/or a lender that we need to get this matter cleared up now. If procedural or methodology errors have been made in our calculations, we want to know about it now. Mr. Fisherís recommendation and the recommendation of the Cityís environmental attorney would be to hire a neutral or independent expert scientist/geologist to analyze our work in this regard. Have one meeting with Sandstone because they have indicated that they would hire an independent expert on this and attempt to get the worse case scenario from their standpoint so that we really know whether we have a problem. There is an outside chance that this could be resolved with their expert, which would be our goal. He asked for Councilís authority to hire an independent expert.

Member Lorenzo said she had no problem with Mr. Fisher hiring an environmental expert and having one meeting with Sandstone. Beyond that she thought it would be prudent for Mr. Fisher, on Councilís behalf, to start the official dispute and arbitration proceedings so that Council could get an answer quickly. She did not want to have a second or third meeting. We have been meeting over the original dispute issues that Sandstone raised for two and half months and there is no resolution to those. She was concerned that down the line there would be further remediation responsibilities and not enough time or money to accomplish the goals for Sandstone to have the property in the proper form and on top of that we would be looking at damages.

CM-02-11-301 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Clark; CARRIED

UNANIMOUSLY: To have one meeting with Sandstone, hire an

independent scientist/geologist expert and return to Council to

consider what the options are.

DISCUSSION

Member Landry stated he would support hiring an expert and meeting with Sandstone but he suggested that before making a decision on what the next move would be they should find out the results of the first meeting of Sandstone. He would not support the motion because it limited action prematurely. He could support the motion if it called for the hiring of an expert and the authority for Mr. Fisher to meet with Sandstone, come back to Council and at that point consider what the options are. Member Lorenzo agreed to amend the motion to that affect. Mayor Clark said he would support the motion.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi asked Mr. Fisher what it would cost for the services of this second expert. Mr. Fisher said he had not made inquiries but expected it to be about $1,500. She hoped it wouldnít exceed that. Council has found themselves in a particularly odious circumstance from the standpoint of wishing to proceed on this matter was one thing but she was not interested in having our "chain pulled". She believed it was very important for the citizens to know how much of their resource was being expended here.

Member Csordas said the DEQ seemed to be the body of experts and he couldnít imagine having anyone more qualified and they have accepted this so their must be another agenda here from Sandstone and he wondered what it was. This canít be the issue and he felt something else was coming down the road because this is an illogical move.

Roll call vote on CM-02-11-301 Yeas: Bononi, Capello, Csordas, Landry, Lorenzo,

Clark

Nays: None

Absent: DeRoche

Member Lorenzo asked to elaborate on the Council vacancy until Member DeRoche arrived. She suggested assuming Member DeRoche informs Council of his intentions she would like to schedule interviews for December 9th along with interviews already scheduled for that date. She had spoken with Deputy Clerk Reutter and it didnít seem there would be too many people to be interviewed so there would be time to interview for the Council position and to advertise in advance.

Mayor Clark said it was his understanding that Member DeRoche could stay until the end of December because he wouldnít be sworn in until the first week of January.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi asked if Member DeRoche would participate in interviewing his successor. Mr. Fisher thought he could participate in the interviews but could not vote on the successor.

AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION

James Korte, Shawood Lake, spoke about Consent Agenda Item G, Warrant No. 636. He said one of those warrants, the $1,400 one, should be made out to Henrietta C. and not James E. Korte since it is her property.

He said regarding the other Warrant amount, he was told that $1,600 was the ballpark. He asked the City to give him three names and he received the information. He said he got it done immediately for the $1,575.00. He was to get $1,600 and he called and said not to give him that amount and he delivered the original bills to the City. He asked why they were paying him $1,575, which would go through his commercial account and he would pay Federal taxes on that money? He asked why the City didnít pay the contractor and asked that they do so. He said over $20,000 has been dumped on those two properties and it is not done yet. Is it ever going to end? He asked that the warrants be corrected.

Mr. Korte said Council asked for an update and one of those was the party store. If you look at the update it is a joke. We already have flooding on the Korte property and the City came out and said it would not be a problem when it was re-graded. He asked why it would be re-graded again. Mr. Korte said he asked for the grading situation. The City went back to a 1994 site plan and nothing is the same as it was then. The dumpster is still not in its corral and it would soon be 5 months and he was told again today it would be two weeks. He would not accept the flooding of his property or the fact that Dean Sutton was allowed to pull the underground drainage out that functioned and filled in the ditches that Mr. Korte was now told were swales and now he gets water. In 32 years the water has never come from that direction and he asked why it was coming that way now?

Mr. Korte said when getting into the specifics of his property at 2030 and the hunk of asphalt thatís the $1,575. Why does the paperwork say 2026 Austin has had cement? In 31 years it has never had cement. Then there is talk of north of that and nothing has been done north of that. He said come spring the City would be putting the water in there because Mr. Korte now fits everything and HCD would put another "hunk" of water in. If this City chose to accept that paperwork as truth, understanding its garbage, then we have a real problem. The last paperwork is still not correct.

Mr. Helwig said at the last meeting presiding Mayor Pro Tem Bononiís requested that these matters be wrapped up. He met with Mr. Korte, Mr. Klaver and Mr. McCusker and it was decided to wrap these items up for $3,000 and there was justification to do so. They were going to wrap it up whether Mr. Korte used a contractor reference or not. The payments were going to be made to him just like the payment earlier this summer was made to him and waivers were going to be signed holding the City harmless. This all is justified and related back to the restoration that was not done properly when the waterline was put in many years ago. As far as the swale across the road Mr. Korte agreed in that meeting to try this. Mr. McCusker thought this would work and Mr. Helwig told Mr. Korte that the City was done with these matters and he agreed. Mr. Helwig apologized to Mr. Korte for the error on the warrant that the check should go to Henrietta Korte, although that was not clear to him in that meeting. He said with Councilís approval to make that change on the warrant that would be resolved. The other matter, they felt very strongly, should be paid to him. It is relating to having removed the steps, the one check, and the other is replacing the pavement that needed to be replaced and it was decided to do it in asphalt. As far as the administration is concerned we are done with these items. Mr. Korte said add the figures; it is not $3,000 and he agreed to what was going on but it rained and he is flooded already.

 

Robert Churella, 43564 Scenic Lane, former Planning Commission member, spoke about Item 9 on the agenda. He said this is a very successful business in Novi, privately owned, looking to build a new building. This new building would increase tax rolls and it would bring in auxiliary businesses that would need space to put offices into and that would help increase the tax base. This is a privately owned enterprise with no City or municipal money involved. Yet, most of the exhibits we have throughout the State are funded by the municipality, they spend the money. If you look at Cobo Hall, the Expo Center in Lansing and in Grand Rapids none of them have landscaping but the Novi Expo Center will have landscaping. He believed that the Council had to move quickly so the financing could follow because interest rates are low right now and they could secure proper money. We want to make sure that the business would stay successful and not have problems because we dragged our feet. It is important that this item be approved tonight so the project could be started.

David Ruyle, 40474 Mill Rd. Ct. E, spoke about political endorsements. He was disappointed that some of his fellow commissioners and others in the City had chosen to use their title to endorse candidates. As an individual and voter they have the right to endorse who they want to but he didnít feel it was proper that they should use their title to endorse a public candidate.

He addressed Council regarding Item #9, the Expo Center project, and reminded Council that the Planning Commission did not vote unanimously to deny the Expo Center. He said he, as a commissioner, was in favor of the Expo Center and hoped the Planning Commission would be overturned tonight.

Regarding Item #10, Toll Brothers, under #2, he said Council had entered into agreement with an RUD with Toll Brothers concerning Island Lake and he thought they had done a phenomenal job but in the RUD it says "Cluster homes will be placed inside the project or in the northern end". This is on the corner of Ten Mile and Taft and he didnít think that was a good place and thought they should honor their agreement and build single-family homes there. He asked Council to consider voting yes on #1, yes on #3 and no on #2.

Dr. Emmet Lippe, Superintendent Novi Schools, spoke about Item #7, the Recreation Facilities Agreement. He said their studies predicted that their growth would occur during the period from 2000-2010 from 1600-2400 students at the high school. At the present time there are approximately 2,000 students enrolled in grades 5 through 8. Mr. Lippe reviewed the work of the Task Force and spoke about sharing both indoor and outdoor facilities. A bond issue was approved on June 11, 2001 for construction of one high school and over the last 18 months major additions and renovations have been planned. Construction documents are being finalized and the bids will be advertised in early January 2003 with construction starting in March 2003. Dr. Lippe requested City Councilís approval.

Brian Kosian, 1523 West Lake Dr., addressed Items #1 and #2, SAD 159 and 160. He stated he was present to voice his strong support of both SADís. He trusted City Council would make the right decision and vote to move these items forward. Council had the opportunity tonight to bring an area of Novi up to the same standards that the rest of the City took for granted. The benefits to the City are there would be no cost to

the City, there would be no more runoff of chemicals running into Walled Lake, no more expenses for grading, safer streets with less of liability. He noted interest rates were at an all time low making it more affordable to residents then it would ever be. It would not be easier later on to get 100 citizens to part with $15,000 a piece. He hoped Council would adhere to the ordinance and base their vote on the SEV. He asked Council to consider why 95% of roads in the City are paved. We are just asking for basic infrastructure that the City has failed to provide to date.

Paul Weindorf, 1641 West Lake Dr., spoke about SAD 159 and 160. He stated he was against the SADís. He said they had been told that every unit of benefit would be assessed equally and not prorated on a property value basis. He thought the only way to decide whether to go forward or not with the project was to respect the vote of the people and since everybody would pay equally for this then every bodyís vote should count equally towards deciding this item. He gave a packet from an arborist he hired to Council regarding his Oak tree. The arborist is State certified and item #3 on his report said that the "any excavation in this area would cause the decline and death of the tree since most of the root system of the tree is in up 12-18 inches of the soil". This went along with Mr. Printzís report that if the roots are cut into or the base of the tree it would die. If Council voted for the SADís he asked that they consider Item #4 in the arboristís report, which said "if cement must be installed, it should be laid over at least 4 inches of crushed stone with no disturbance to the existing grade, no curb should be installed on either side of the new road and hard surface should not be installed closer than 10 feet of the buttress of the tree".

Jeff Heyn, 1420 Pettibone Lake, Highland Michigan, regarding agenda #9, stated he owns property in the Grand River Corridor between Beck and Novi Roads and asked why this corridor has languished for years and deteriorated? Why didnít the developers come back to this area? The new Novi Expo was a potential catalyst for positive change that could stimulate other improvements to our corridor. Mr. Bowman is ready to build the Expo Center and he asked Council to approve the facility without further obstacles. Mr. Heyn said Councilís decision has tremendous gravity on the development community.

Jeff Sobolewski, 1405 West Lake Dr., stated he has drainage problem near his home and he supports both of the SADís. He said the lake is very low and other lakes have used augmentation wells to keep the level of the lake up. He said the condos on Walled Lake would be going to City water and they already have a well in place that could be looked at to be used as an augmentation well. It would save a lot of money because a new well would not have to be drilled and we might just have to extend the pipeline into the water.

Marie Watkins, 330 Ludlow, stated she opposed SAD 159 and 160. She noted the majority of people voted against the SADís and she hoped the Council votes to stop the process. She said things are not good, people are not working, no new homes have been sold on the property they just developed and a war is coming. People have lived without it for 50 plus years and they can live a few more years without it.

 

 

 

CONSENT AGENDA (Approval/Removals)

Mayor Clark noted the Claims and Account Warrant should be amended so the $1,400 check could be made payable to Henrietta C. Korte.

Member Lorenzo asked, regarding the minutes of October 21st, Mr. Helwig if he had reviewed

and read his portion of his report that evening with regard with the Galway Drive repaving and was comfortable with the language in the Council minutes. Mr. Helwig said he was comfortable.

CM-02-11-302 Moved by Bononi, seconded by Csordas; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:

To approve the Consent Agenda as presented.

Roll call vote on CM-02-11-302 Yeas: Capello, Csordas, Landry, Lorenzo, Clark, Bononi

Nays: None

Absent: DeRoche

A. Approve Minutes of:

1. October 17, 2002, Special meeting

2. October 21, 2002, Regular meeting

B. Approval to award bid for design and printing of the Parks, Recreation, and Forestry Guide to Dearborn Lithograph, Inc., the low bidder, in the amount of $25,251.

C. Approval to award proposal for security chain fencing for the DPW facility to Northern Fence Company, the low bidder, in the amount of $30,900.

D. Approval to award proposal for Telecommunications Analysis to Plante & Moran, the low bidder, in the amount of $8,000.

E. Approval to award bid for replacement dump truck bodies to C.E. Pollard Company, the low bidder, in the amount of $9,428.75.

F. Approval of Traffic Control Order 02-21 to install 3-way stop signs at the intersection of Laramie at Cheyenne and Traffic Control Order 02-25 rescinding Traffic Control Order 98-08, allowing removal of the yield sign currently located on Cheyenne at Laramie in the Walden Woods II Subdivision.

G. Approval of Claims and Accounts Ė Warrant No. 635 and Warrant No. 636.

MATTERS FOR COUNCIL ACTION Ė Part I

1. Consideration of Special Assessment District No. 159 Lake Wall John Hawthornís Subdivisions 1 & 2 and Supervisorís Plat Number 2, Water Main.

Mayor Clark said this item had been before Council on a number of occasions generating a great deal of discussion and controversy. One hundred ballots were mailed out and 90 ballots were returned. For SAD 159, forty votes were received to approve and 50 votes to reject and with reference to SAD 160, thirty votes were received to approve the paving and 57 votes against the paving.

 

 

Member Lorenzo asked if the City Assessor had certified the petitions with regard to the new counts. Mr. Helwig didnít know but did know what the ballot results were from the Clerkís office. He said the City Attorney advised them that at this stage Council could decide the issue. Mr. Fisher said it was Councilís final decision on the project.

Member Lorenzo asked Mr. Lemmon, City Assessor, regarding the updated ballots and votes whether he had tallied that in accordance with SEV? Mr. Lemmon said he had not. It was his understanding that the way the ordinance was written that the initial undertaking of the SAD was based on SEV. Mr. Fisher said later in the project if a certain SEV objected, then it took a super majority of Council in order to approve the project but the ordinance does not provide that the Council must rise or fall in its decision based on SEV.

Member Lorenzo thought this was the residentís decision and Council is merely the administrators of the process. The City through the attorney, assessors, staff and administration had spent a lot of time and taxpayers dollars on this process but in the end it is the residentís process and decision. There is no City policy at the present time that says the City would contribute or reimburse for an SAD. The residents have spoken and she was prepared to not go any further with this.

Member Csordas said it sounded like the process was started appropriately, there has been a vote of the people who live in the area and it is clearly a majority that opposes the project.

CM-02-11-303 Moved by Csordas, seconded by Bononi; CARRIED

UNANIMOUSLY: To terminate the process of SAD #159.

DISCUSSION

Mr. Landry stated he would cast a reluctant vote in favor of the motion. He was reluctant because of the manner in which we have come to where we are today. This entire process has taken time and a considerable amount of the Cityís money because a majority of the people said they wanted this and now a majority says they do not want it. He asked why they spent the money and why did this begin in the first place if the majority of the people were just going to change their mind. He thought the process should be looked at because a lot of money is being wasted on these kinds of SADís.

Mayor Clark indicated for the record he would join in the comments make by Member Landry. He would support the motion.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi said in the final analysis whatever the property owners wish to have that is what she honors. She doesnít spend other peopleís money for them. On the other hand she said as a water quality planner the opportunity to have water service to each of these properties for a total cost per benefiting property owner of $5,096.12 plus interest. Annual payments would range from $475.65 to, in the first payment, $180.00. She wanted these numbers on the record for those who didnít return their ballots and thought that this price

wouldnít come this way again. She would support according to the peoples wishes.

Roll call vote on CM-02-11-303 Yeas: Csordas, Landry, Lorenzo, Clark, Bononi,

Capello

Nays: None

Absent: DeRoche

2. Consideration of Special Assessment District No. 160 Lake Wall John Hawthornís Subdivisions 1 & 2 and Supervisorís Plant Number 2, Road Paving.

Mayor Clark advised that the vote on this SAD was 33 to approve and 57 voting no.

CM-02-11-304 Moved by Csordas, seconded by Bononi; CARRIED

UNANIMOUSLY: To terminate the process of SAD #160.

Roll call vote on CM-02-11-304 Yeas: Landry, Lorenzo, Clark, Bononi, Capello,

Csordas

Nays: None

Absent: DeRoche

3. Consideration of SAD Resolution Number 5, directing the City Assessor to prepare an Assessment Roll; Sierra Drive (Pioneer Meadows Subdivision) Sanitary Sewer Ė SAD 162.

Mayor Clark indicated a response form was received from Cynthia A. Boyle, 50-

22-21-102-002 180-Novi indicating she would really like to be added to this SAD as

her property did not perk and she asked to be kept informed.

CM-02-11-305 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Csordas; CARRIED

UNANIMOUSLY: To approve SAD Resolution Number 5,

directing the City Assessor to prepare an Assessment Roll;

Sierra Drive (Pioneer Meadows Subdivision) Sanitary Sewer Ė

SAD 162.

DISCUSSION

Member Lorenzo said Council would appreciate it if the residents would really

consider the monies they would be expending and that the taxpayers would be

expending on this process. She asked that before they go any further than the

next step they make sure this is what they want to do. Also, there is no room for

negotiating with the City on this matter.

Member Landry said in the packet of materials there is an indication that the

inclusion of Sierra Drive and the repaving program needed to be determined prior

to the actual setting of the SAD roll by the City Assessor. He asked if that needed

to be done tonight? Mr. Helwig said if this went forward they were endorsing

 

what the City Engineer had sent forward to include in the next roadway program.

It does meet the core criteria and Mr. Helwig said they would be recommending

that to Council in the next round of repaving. He said their firm recommendation

was that the City should honor that, as the PASER program would say it should

be repaved. He said what Council was dealing with in these two was sanitary

sewer and water services and not road repaving. Member Landry said then

Council doesnít have to make that decision tonight? Mr. Helwig said they were

making that decision if Council moved forward with these two because the road

repaving had been deleted from what was in front of them tonight.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi asked what the promise was that the current quality of this road would not bump somebody else off that priority list. Also, how would the construction of both be timed in our paving program in order to accommodate these residents not being without pavement at the point their utility is installed?

Mr. Helwig said it must coordinate. It would be ridiculous and a waste of dollars to repave and then go in and do utilities. They would include in the next budget allocation that money be set aside for that repaving doing it according to how the utility work proceeded. As far as bumping someone else, he thought being in the poor condition it would not bump anyone else. Poor condition is the three lowest categories and we are coming down the home stretch on those. He would look at the PASER map to be sure. Mayor Pro Tem Bononi was concerned because she didnít want to see anyone else lose out and Mr. Helwig agreed.

Roll call vote on CM-02-11-305 Yeas: Lorenzo, Clark, Bononi, Capello, Csordas,

Landry

Nays: None

Absent: DeRoche

4. Consideration of SAD Resolution Number 5, directing the City Assessor to prepare an Assessment Roll; Sierra Drive (Pioneer Meadows Subdivision) Water Main Ė SAD 163.

Mayor Clark said they received a response from Cynthia Boyle indicating that they would really like to build on the above mentioned property and she was in favor of this SAD.

CM-02-11-306 Moved by Lorenzo, seconded by Csordas; CARRIED

UNANIMOUSLY: To approve SAD Resolution Number 5,

directing the City Assessor to prepare an Assessment Roll;

Sierra Drive (Pioneer Meadows Subdivision) Water Main Ė SAD

163.

Roll call vote on CM-02-11-306 Yeas: Clark, Bononi, Capello, Csordas, Landry,

Lorenzo

Nays: None

Absent: DeRoche

 

5. Approval to submit the Program Year 2003 Community Development Block Grant Fund Application.

CM-02-11-307 Moved by Bononi, seconded by Csordas; CARRIED

UNANIMOUSLY: To approve the submittal of the Program Year

2003 Community Development Block Grant Fund Application.

Roll call vote on CM-02-11-307 Yeas: Bononi, Capello, Csordas, Landry,

Lorenzo, Clark

Nays: None

Absent: DeRoche

6. Consideration of options for hiring one to three (1-3) additional Police Officers.

Item #6 has been moved on the Agenda to follow Item #14.

Member DeRoche arrived.

7. Approval of Recreation Facilities Agreement between Novi Community School

District and the City of Novi for 49.37 acres of land.

Mayor Clark said Dr. Lippe and members of the school districts were present. Mayor Clark indicated that there was a Civic Center Complex Task Force that made recommendations and they consisted of representatives of the Library Board, the Novi Board of Education, the City Council, citizen representatives and members of the administration.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi said she was absolutely interested in entering into an agreement with the Novi School District in order to share resource. Those of us in government know that we canít do things alone anymore and that partnerships are almost essential to avoid overlaps, duplications and extreme expenditure as resources become ever and ever scarcer. However, how we go about these partnerships makes a great deal of difference and she had questions regarding the draft agreement Council was given to review. She was concerned with how much of a partnership was reflected in this agreement, how collaborative it would be and what benefit it would be to the City. She wanted to seek a balance in the agreement that would give some degree of assurance that the City and its taxpayers would benefit as well.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi said there was no consideration or money amount proposed for the City of Novi in this agreement and she wanted to know why. The consideration mentioned on page 2 of the agreement referred to mutual benefit. She asked why there was no financial consideration.

Mr. Fisher said he was not a negotiator or this agreement but had reviewed it.

Mr. Helwig said he had seen agreements that went from $1.00 to whatever amount. This agreement started with the Civic Center Complex Task Force, which saw the potential to save community taxpayer dollars by going with one high school rather than two. In

order to pull that off significant cooperation would be required between the Novi Community Schools and the City of Novi. They thought they could put this together without a lease and the schools said in order for them to bond the improvements they must have a formal binding agreement with the City. This is a policy matter for the City Council to decide. Institutional turf has been set aside for the betterment of the total community in order to provide warranted parking and open space and this canít be done without the land south of the ravine. It is now in Councilís hands as to whether appropriate value has been secured for the community by going with the improvements and the lesser taxes to support one high school as opposed to building two and/or should there be additional remuneration between the institutions.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi said she requested appraisal information from Mr. Lemmon and he supplied an appraisal for a portion of the total acreage that totals 15 acres of land in the south west one quarter of the north west one quarter of Section 27. This is the area where the new athletic fields would be proposed with a frontage on Taft Road. These 15 acres alone were appraised at a value of $605,000. It would also be able to be served by all utilities including sanitary sewer and storm sewer. In addition, the appraisal says the highest and best use of this property with an underlying zone of R-4, single family, is in the open market for future single family residential development and the estimation of land value would be based on sales of property in the area for similar use. It also says that almost never is a single family zoned land leased, only occasionally is vacant land leased and almost always this land is with commercial and office zoning because of the value of the land. Therefore, income capitalization approach is not utilized in estimating the land value. She found the comparables included in the appraisal interesting with regard to existing subdivisions in the City and the sale prices that this land could affect in the marketplace.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi said she contacted one of the members of the Task Force as she was interested in how they came about and made their decisions. She was told they did not go into actual terms of how this would all come about. She had concerns about fiduciary duty as a Councilperson to the citizens of Novi with regard to how we expend and share those resources. She asked who authored this agreement?

Mr. Helwig said the process was we met with the school representatives and were informed of the lease requirement that they needed for their bonding. "Their attorney drafted the agreement, it was reviewed by us", a couple of drafts went back and forth and this agreement was where they landed. It was initially drafted and a lot of the wording came from the school district.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi asked if the City by virtue of an agreement absolve the school district from meeting all City zoning and other regulatory requirements? She asked if the City could write their own terms, as this is a private agreement or was that prohibitive. Mr. Fisher said since this is City property, it would not be prohibitive. She asked what zoning requirements were to be met and who would make applications for them? Mr. Fisher said the agreement didnít address that specific issue. She asked what wetland/woodland requirements were to be met, what storm water planning would be required and who would be the applicant? Mr. Fisher said that would be the entity that makes the improvement. She said the school district would have to perform application and permit approval duties that under State law they would not have to do

but under a private agreement they would? Mr. Fisher responded that he was not so sure and recognized there was a provision in the State School Code that provided that site plans for school facilities for school purposes are within the exclusive jurisdiction of the Superintendent of Public Instruction. This facility is not strictly a facility for school purposes but is also a facility for the general public; therefore, Mr. Fisher didnít think that provision under the School Code would apply. She said with regard to any concerns about land use, local regulations such as wetlands, which are alluded to in the agreement, and woodlands, which are not mentioned and this property does have mapped woodlands on it, and also storm water planning which is notably absent in the agreement and her concern is with the proximity of Miller Creek and wetlands on the property. She asked if those things could be worked into mutual agreement. Mr. Fisher said yes.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi noted some of her concerns with ownership responsibilities since the property would be leased but still owned by the City was what effect the storm water issues would have on our sub water shed. Of particular importance and concern to her were property owners downstream. The Dunbarton basins to the south of this proposed development area had been abandoned as a result of no Clean Michigan Initiative Funding left. So our project there, which would receive storm water from this development, would not be there for at least any time in the immediate future. A downstream owner has already successfully sued the City of Novi for close to a quarter of million dollars who is still complaining about receiving floodwaters. Her concern was that any other development upstream tributary to Miller Creek would exacerbate this condition. If those Dunbarton basins were coming on line, she would have no concern. She was concerned that as landowners they would be litigated against as a result of producing additional storm water.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi asked who would apply for an MDEQ permit with regard to the discharge of water from the site, who would hold the erosion and sedimentation control permit, who would provide after hours security after the development is built, would a gate at Taft Road be provided and would a lighting plan be required since these playing fields would be used at night?

Mr. Fisher believed the DEQ requirement and the erosion and sedimentation control permit would be required of the party doing the improvements. The review or maintenance of the property and overseeing the property for security would go into a joint plan that the parties are to prepare and submit each year. As far as exact improvements for gating, etc. they would be subject to the plans being prepared.

Mr. Helwig said this is a kinder, gentler land use plan for a long, long term. No permanent structures which is defined in the agreement to mean including a foundation. This is strictly limited to structures directly associated with athletic fields, which would not be hard surfaced or impermeable structures as far as water being absorbed by the ground. He was very sensitive to what was happening to that whole network of Nine Mile through Dunbarton Basin. We need to persevere on the Dunbarton Basins. This, being up stream, is a kinder, gentler long-term preservation of that open space. Mayor Pro Tem Bononi had no question about that. She said all she was looking for was how operationally these things would come about and how the resources would be protected?

Mayor Pro Tem Bononiís next concern was indemnification. She said we are going to be looking at a mutual or equal expenditure of city funds with regard to providing indemnification protection against claims that arise on the property and asked Mr. Fisher if that was correct?

Mr. Fisher said the anticipation was that both parties would maintain public liability and property damage insurance in commercially reasonable amounts and each party would name the other on their policies. She asked what reasonable was? Mr. Fisher said commercially reasonable was a term that was used in this type of situation and meant that the amount of insurance would be what is carried in like and similar circumstances by a party making that type of use of the property.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi asked if the discretion with regard to utilization and scheduling of the facilities would be at the discretion of the school district. Mr. Fisher said that was his understanding. He earmarked that and wrote a letter to the administration and to Mr. Auler to confirm that we would not be losing out with this type of provision. She was concerned and understood that the needs of the school district would probably be more concurrent during the school year but if we are only going to be receiving the ultimate usage of those facilities during the summer months for three months, she didnít consider it to be equitable that the City should be paying a 50% share of the freight with regard to indemnification. She had a greater concern with regard to litigation and having the City as property owners, regardless of what we pay, we are probably going to be sued first. Mr. Fisher thought they would both be sued together.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi said regarding the land use issues that Mr. Helwig brought up, Concept Plan K from the master plan that the Task Force produced is not referenced in this document. She was concerned because there was a primitive but definite layout that was proposed by the Task Force and it was not something that the school should be held to specifically but it did bring up density usages and land use. She would expect that it would be or is an improvement placement at the choice of the school district whatever that might be. Exhibit A is also mentioned in the agreement but she didnít see Exhibit A. However, there is an aerial photograph that is unlabeled included and perhaps one of those is an Exhibit. She asked if, by virtue of this agreement, the City was declining the option of any future use of this land for any other purpose of its own even from the standpoint of using a small portion of it for some recreational use. The term "exclusive" on page 2 #1 is used with regard to the districts right to use this property. If the City decides to make an improvement would they be allowed to do so or not? Mr. Fisher said yes an improvement could be made but would we have

exclusive use for all times of that improvement he thought the answer would be no. She asked if the City proposed to construct something else on this land would the school district have to approve of it. Mr. Fisher said there would have to be mutual agreement. She asked what would happen if there was no agreement? Mr. Fisher said it would go to arbitration. She asked if it could be reserved for the City in this agreement the ability to be able to do that as long as we work in collaboration and cooperation with the school district. Mr. Fisher said yes, if there is joint mutual agreement to do that. She said there is nothing in the agreement now that says that and Mr. Fisher agreed. She asked if it was appropriate for Council to place conditions on the site uses. Mr. Fisher said it would be a matter of negotiation. Mayor Pro Tem Bononi said she wanted to see the recreational and athletic uses defined. The language

on page 2 suggests community recreation facilities on the land including "but not limited to" practice fields, ball fields and supporting property improvements for use by school sports teams. She was concerned that if talking about a building with no foundation as a use limitation what about buildings built on slabs? Would they be permitted under the language of the agreement? Mr. Fisher thought a slab would be a foundation. She asked if he would consider that a traditional foundation as opposed to some other structural form? Mr. Fisher said he would because even with a slab you have to build a foundation for the slab. She asked about an amphitheatre, ice rink or outdoor theatre? Mr. Fisher said ice rink would not require a foundation and an amphitheatre might depend on how it is designed. She asked if Council could place use conditions such as time of day that the site could be used. She would consider reasonable time usages as no later than midnight or earlier than 6 AM. Mr. Fisher said it would be up to the school district and he didnít think they would want to use the facility for school purposes at late hours, but the agreement calls for the preparation in filing with the Clerk and secretary of the School Board, a joint memorandum, concerning the scheduling of the uses. She said scheduling of the uses was another matter. She was talking about conditions of land use approval that would run concurrent with the agreement and not the scheduling throughout the year of how the school district and City might want to utilize those facilities.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi said another condition of approval she would look for was a lighting plan that reflected the City of Novi ordinance particularly with regard to night. She would look for limitations on whether or not the City had concerns about other school districts utilizing the facilities only as opposed to being a guest of the Novi School District. She was concerned about subletting and nothing was in the agreement that prohibits that. There is nothing in the agreement that prohibits the charging of admission and she thought it should be specified with regard to the generation of cash fees and if such fees are generated who would receive the proceeds.

On page 2 the agreement refers to plan review with regard to the development proposals to go to the Planning Commission and she thought that was a great idea but would suggest that the Planning Commission should be referring to Council at that point. If expenditures were necessary, that would be a Council directive. She suggested that with regard to the development proposals that wetlands and the absent storm water issues not be relegated to a "note" on the plan but be prepared by a wetland specialist or water quality specialist particularly with regard to a professional engineer providing water quality and quantity calculations to be sure that the water generated by this site be adequately and safely channeled. Woodlands are not mentioned in the agreement but there are light cover, medium density woodlands; she asked if a woodlands permit would be needed. Mr. Fisher said certainly if construction is going to take place on the property, then the ordinance would govern that activity and a permit would be contemplated. She felt that was where the language was absent but our City woodlands map clearly defines the woodlands that are there.

She said the May 1st reference to budget preparation on page four, she believed required Council approval but it was not mentioned. Page 4, #7, refers to "representatives of the City" who would determine what these qualifications and quantifications are and she thought they should be defined as City Manager or his designee. Page 4, #8 refers to "any discovered dangerous or defective conditions on

the land" and she would look for the City to be held harmless in the event that anything like that should come about. Mr. Fisher had no comment. Regarding dispute resolution she said it was suggested that an "impartial third party" would help to resolve the dispute. She said that was not realistic or effective and suggested using the Mayorís dispute resolution program.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi said she had no problem entering into an agreement with the school district but the fact that there is no consideration being paid by the school district on one third of this parcel being worth $605,000 is not an equitable use of City resource. She would look for something to be paid to the City in exchange for this and would not be looking for a 99 year lease. She thought leases work out between partners who have a vested interest and incentive to keep the agreement fresh, viable and alive and she would look for an initial period of 30 years and no more with spelled out periods of the lease to follow that.

Member Lorenzo concurred with the concerns of Mayor Pro Tem Bononi. She said partnerships are business decisions and we are making a business decision on behalf of the taxpayers that Council represents and she was sure Mr. Koster understood that. She said this was not an equitable partnership, as proposed, or a good business decision for the City of Novi. Member Lorenzo said she would not agree to a 99-year lease and thought 30 years was reasonable. She asked why all of the acreage was being included when only about 15 acres would be utilized? Mr. Koster said the 47 acres is adjacent to the property of the high school and to get to it they had to cross all the acreage and they had to have a means of ingress/egress. Member Lorenzo asked if an easement would suffice and Mr. Koster said it probably would and she stated she would be more agreeable granting an easement for access rather than deeding over the full acreage of the property.

Mr. Koster thought that School law required a lease of 50 years at minimum. Member Lorenzo said if that were the case she would reconsider the number of years and asked that that be documented.

Member Lorenzo said on page 2, it spoke of "community recreations on the land included but no limited to" and she wanted the "included but not limited to" clearly defined as well as "the supporting property improvements". Page 3, the use and wetland crossing for access to the southerly portion of the land" she asked that the "limited structures" be clearly defined in the agreement. If Master Plan K is the school districtís intentions, then she wanted it included as an exhibit and referenced.

Regarding the approval process she agreed that they must still abide by all city ordinances and wanted it added to the agreement. Member Lorenzo said Council didnít have Exhibit B and wanted it before the final agreement was signed because it allocated the responsibility of the cost of labor and materials required for the regular maintenance of land and facilities. She didnít think the usage was equitable and said language should include that "the schedule shall take into consideration the respective seasons, requirements and needs of the City and the District and a joint schedule, considering the Cityís needs, would be accommodated to the extent that is practical and feasible". If priority is to be given to the District for District functions it would only be during the school year.

Regarding the proportionate share of cost of the use of the property during which the facilities are available, she had no problem with if the City is using it, they should maintain it. If the School District is using it they should maintain it. She was also aware of a turf specialist that the District had hired with regard to utilizing some of the athletic fields and limiting the hours of usage. She asked that that be contemplated in this agreement that as long as the City was going to maintain those athletic fields for the time they are using them, that those fields would be open and accessible to the Parks and Recreation Department and the City for use.

Member Lorenzo thought there should be some type of compensation. This is a big sacrifice on the part of the City in terms of monetary value of the property. She proposed, as just compensation for the use, is that the School District eliminate any of the week-end custodial or other costs that the City is now required to pay for the use of any of their facilities. Currently that figure is $31,935 and she thought it would be reasonable to eliminate that cost for the use of this property for 50 years. Member Lorenzo agreed with the hold harmless arrangement. She thought the Dispute Resolution Panel needed to be worked on as well. She would be agreeable with the changes she mentioned.

Member Landry noted there is a history of cooperation and partnership with the schools. He thought comments of previous speakers are well taken with respect to making sure that development that occurs on this property meets wetlands/woodlands, etc. He said he was not concerned about the rent issue and was not in favor of charging them rent because he thought the City would get rent. We are all serving the same master, the residents of the City, whether providing education or parks and recreation facilities. This is an opportunity for the City to create another park at the cost of the school district and a majority of the maintenance would be borne by someone else and he thought that was rent. He would not be looking to charge rent in a monetary sense to the School District and he would support a 50-year lease as opposed to a 99-year lease. He was satisfied that without any foundations, there would be no structures on the property and he was satisfied that both entities would be protected by governmental immunity with respect to any injuries. He thought the agreement could be tightened up a little bit. Personally, he liked the idea of 50 years and thought the City and the School District should be working together and he would not be in favor of charging any specific rent.

Member Csordas asked about the book value of the land. Mr. Koster stated in 1972, the Fuerst sisters purchased the property at $4,000 per acre and sold back to the City at the same amount. The School District did not opt to have it appraised because it was agreed that it was taxpayerís money, they paid $4,000 and it just went to the rightful owner, i.e. the City from the School District. He proposed that there was no need for a document like that or any complexities or any worries of litigation or liability in the future if the City sold the property to the School for the book value. Ninety-nine years made no sense to him and he thought they could simplify this process and dramatically benefit the citizens of Novi. He said if they need 15 acres to accomplish their goal and whatever access, sell it at book value. The City shouldnít profit off of this since it is paid for by the taxpayers and utilized by the students and the parents. He thought it would be a

fair deal, no complex arrangements, no need to talk about 50 year or 99-year deals and it is a good deal for the schools and the taxpayers. All of these issues we have talked about wouldnít matter. A $60,000 investment and it would be done, it would be clean and everybody would be on their own and he thought it was fair and equitable. Member Lorenzo said she might be agreeable to that.

Mayor Clark stated if the property was sold, there would be no control over structures or use. The Citizens Task Force tried to develop a plan that would accommodate the concerns of the citizens as well as meeting the needs of the school and avoid having structures on that property. He was not in favor of charging the school district rent. The Council and the School Board serve the same constituency. The Task Force reviewed the proposal and the decision was that if we could arrive at this agreement, citizens would be saved a substantial and long-term additional tax burden. This made eminent prudent financial sense for the same constituency that the school board and this Council serve. All things cannot always be measured in terms of dollars and cents. The benefit to the community and the consideration in addition to the tax savings we are getting additional recreational facilities for this community at no cost to the City. Itís evident the City doesnít have the money for parkland and this would be a win-win situation for the entire community. During the school year and school hours, the facilities would be available to the high school students. The School District is committed to the community at large and is one of the finest in the State. If the bonding requirement is a minimum of 50-year lease he agreed with that. Mayor Clark said when we work together we all win and we all end up with a quality community that is one of the finest in the State. He knew time was of the essence and asked that if thereís any fine-tuning to be done to this agreement, that it be done immediately because this is for the benefit of every citizen, parent, and student of this community.

Member Capello agreed with terms and that they should take under lease only the acres they needed to utilize. He asked what type of majority vote was needed considering that we are granting some type of interest in real estate for 50 years. Mr. Fisher said five votes were needed. He agreed it was difficult to distinguish whether a citizen would fall under the purview of utilizing City services or school services.

Member Capello said he agreed with a lot of the comments made. He thought it was wise to reduce the lease to a 50 year term and that they take under lease only the acreage they would utilize. He asked what type of majority vote was needed. Mr. Fisher said five votes were needed. Member Capello agreed with other speakers that it couldnít be distinguished whether a citizen fell under the purview of utilizing City services or school provided services. He said the City utilizes the fields on Ten Mile in front of the tennis court for soccer, the fields by Novi woods and the school parking lots, the fields by Orchard Hills and the school parking lots, and the parking lots of the new middle school to service our soccer fields where we didnít have to build any parking lots, etc. He asked Mr. Koster if there was any lease arrangement or any rental fees being paid by the City or Parks and Recreation to the schools for their use. Mr. Koster said no. Member Capello asked if the City contributed anything to the maintenance of those fields or

parking lots. Mr. Koster said they do the majority of the maintenance and they prefer it that way. Member Capello asked what they charged the City to use the gymnasiums of the schools. Mr. Koster said if the gyms are used during the time that a custodian is normally there, there is no charge for the custodian. If used when a custodian is not there, those are the fees that Member Lorenzo talked about. Member Lorenzo said those fees were $32,000. There would be no charge during the week for the custodian, but if there is not a custodian regularly scheduled on a Saturday there would be a charge. Member Capello asked what other service does the school charge back. Mr. Koster said not in parks and recreation. Member Capello asked what their time frame was? Mr. Koster replied they were finishing construction drawings now and after the first of the year they would like to go to bids. Member Capello asked if Council took another two to four weeks to finalize the lease that would fit within your schedule? Mr. Koster said they would continue with the drawings until such time as this lease agreement looked as though itís terminated because time is of the essence.

Dr. Lippe said he wasnít prepared for this kind of response from the City Council. To say he was surprised was a gross understatement. For years, on a handshake, theyíve allowed the City Parks and Recreation Department to use school district owned indoor facilities without any agreement with the only charge being for custodian and maintenance work that was above what would normally be done. This City has received the benefit of using the School District without any fee, charge or lease agreement. All the things that Council brought up in terms of lawsuits, whose liable for what and whoís responsibility for what we have worked out because we are a community and we work very well together. He said it surprised him to no end and he asked why the City would treat them this way when they had treated the City so good over the years. The same statement can be made about outdoor facilities. The City uses a lot of their outdoor facilities and they are very glad that the City uses them. If the school district said they wanted some type of lease agreement because they are going to construct, for the good of this community, a soft ball diamond and athletic practice facilities, wouldnít say much for them as individuals and as a school district and as City officials to work together. He said if City Council wanted to manage a Parks and Recreation program along the lines that they want the school district to enter into an agreement, we are not interested in doing that. They are not interested in having long lease agreements with Council to use their facilities; the City is welcome to use them. If there are problems, we work with the City Manager and City administration to straighten them out. In the spirit of cooperation the School District allows the City to use these facilities. He was surprised and disappointed that they received that kind of response from Council when they made a request from the City to use some of the City property to construct very fine facilities for community use. He asked Council to reconsider and allow them a lease agreement that makes sense without all the strings attached that Council outlined. He hoped, in the spirit of cooperation, would rethink this and make sure that they could enter into some kind of an agreement that, in fact, weíre able to use facilities that currently are owned by the City. In his opinion, it was not a whole lot compared to the things that the City currently uses.

 

 

Mayor Clark noted that as a Mayor, resident, parent and taxpayer we have one of the finest public education systems in the State of Michigan and it has existed and developed the way it has because of the leadership of Dr. Lippe, his administration, staff, teachers and the commitment of parents and students. Dr. Lippe is right. We have worked in the spirit of cooperation and more importantly we have worked in a spirit of trust. He said that spirit of trust and cooperation has never been broken and he saw no reason for that to change. The request is reasonable, practical and a benefit to every element of this community. If this document is going to be worked on, it shouldnít come back as a 50 page agreement as that is unnecessary and would go against everything that we have spent years building up in the community. All things donít have to be extremely involved to be workable.

CM-02-11-308 Moved by Landry, seconded by Capello; MOTION FAILED:

That Council consider having the City Attorney look at the

proposed agreement and make two changes. 1) that the term

of the lease be changed to 50 years and 2) that because

Council was talking about developing property, that there be

some clause to make it clear that ordinances with respective

woodland, wetlands and water shed concerns come before the

Planning Commission and the City Council to be sure they

meet the City ordinances and then bring this document back to

Council.

DISCUSSION

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi stated her comments werenít personal but to suggest that she has any other motivation than looking for the best business arrangement for this City is not a fair remark and she took exception to that. It should also be made clear that there is more than one school district in this City and we have residents whose services are affected and whose tax payments are affected. We all contribute but that doesnít mean to say that we are not served by good business agreements. She could not imagine anyone not wishing to have a good and solid business agreement and that doesnít mean that anyone on this Council has a bad attitude toward the school district. In order to cement our relationships with good business practices we all win and that is what she was interested in doing. She would not feel that the majority of the items that she felt were absent from this agreement could be addressed by amendments to the agreement so she would not support this.

Member Csordas asked how much bonds would cost the school? Mr. Koster stated the construction bonds had already been secured. Member Csordas asked if, in his opinion, the $4,000 an acre for 15 acres or 20 with the easement was a good deal? Mr. Koster said that was what they paid for the land 30 years ago. Mr. Koster agreed that it would be a good deal. Member Csordas concurred with Mayor Pro Tem Bononi. He would like to look at it in a simplistic manner and asked Mr. Koster if he thought $4,000 an acre for whatever acres they needed was a fair deal for the school, they would be done and they could do whatever they wanted with it. Mr. Koster said yes, that would be his opinion. Member Csordas said he would not support the motion.

Member Lorenzo agreed with Member Csordasí suggestion to sell the land. While the City doesnít pay for students, the school doesnít pay for police, etc. $60,000 would pay for two police officers and Council would decide that later. This is a very good proposal and if the school district is agreeable to it, letís do it.

Mayor Pro tem Bononi asked about adjacency issues and whether there would be any difficulty with attaching covenants and restrictions to the sale of the land with the agreement of the school district to specify precisely what would be put on that land? Mr. Fisher said that would be very feasible.

Member Capello clarified the motion was to bring it back next meeting. Council agreed.

Mayor Clark said he was not in favor of this. Even if there were covenants and restrictions, this flied in the face of everything we have accomplished in this community between the City administration, citizens and the school district working cooperatively. Mayor Clark urged his colleagues not to throw away what theyíve spent years, time and energy building up between the City, its citizens and the school district. It is pennywise and pound-foolish and is not worth $60,000 or one red cent. This will do more to set the relationship between the City, citizens and the school district starting down a wrong path.

ROLL CALL VOTE ON CM-02-11-308 Yeas: Capello, Landry, Clark

Nays: Csordas, Lorenzo, Bononi

Absent: DeRoche

CM-02-11-309 Moved by Csordas, seconded by Lorenzo; MOTION FAILED:

To prepare a sale document for whatever acreage the

School District needs to develop their project, which is to

include an access easement and to offer the land to them at

book value, which Mr. Koster stated was $4,000 an acre. Also,

that provisions of covenants and restrictions agreeable to the

School District be pursued.

DISCUSSION

Mayor Clark asked Mr. Fisher if this would require five votes? Mr. Fisher said it would.

Member Landry asked Mr. Fisher if the City sells the property to the School District could they construct a football stadium on it? Mr. Fisher said if there are no restrictions imposed, the site plan for the use of the property would be reviewed by the Superintendent of Public Construction, which is not the City. He asked if they could put a lighted parking lot on Taft Road adjacent to such a stadium? Mr. Fisher said if the Superintendent of Public Construction approved it. Member Landry asked if they could construct any building that would be attended to educational purposes on this property? Mr. Fisher said yes, buildings used for school purposes. He thought the statute read for instructional and non-instructional purposes. Member Landry asked if the City would have any control

over that? Mr. Fisher said no, unless restrictions were imposed as part of the sale. Member Landry said he was not in favor of selling this property to the School District. He said the City would lose control and if we attempted to limit their use in a sale document, he wouldnít buy it if he was the School District. Why would anyone want to buy a piece of property, own it and not have control over it? If they are spending capital dollars, they should be able to build whatever they want on this property. Member Landry didnít know why they would buy it at any price and he agreed with the comments of the Mayor. He thought if the schools said they wanted rent on all of those basketball courts what would we say, and he wouldnít blame them a bit if they came and started saying "alright you want smart business deals Iíll show you smart business deals". Member Landry said Council would go one way or another. They would either go smart business deals and hire lawyers before talking with each other or we are going to continue on handshake deals and have a general 50 year lease with some general provisions in it. He was not in favor or selling this property to the school District.

Member Lorenzo felt Council had trust in the School District that they wouldnít put something offensive on that property. She had no problem offering this property to them and thought they would build what they said they were going to build and there would be no problem. She said an access easement would be needed to the property and she would also be agreeable to that if the maker of the motion would be agreeable. Member Csordas agreed.

Mayor Clark thought the people who fought long and hard against the pool would be happy and overjoyed to find out that that situation might occur. He wanted to trust Dr. Lippe and the present school board. We are not going to be here 50 years from now and neither are they. If they said this is not a done deal he guessed they would have to look at a second high school and he hoped everyone would be ready to answer to the citizens about having their taxes raised because rather than look at the long view we decided to take the narrow view and make $60,000.

Roll call vote on CM-02-11-309 Yeas: Csordas, Lorenzo, Bononi

Nays: Landry, Clark, Capello

Absent: DeRoche

Mayor Clark asked Council if they would be willing to consider looking at a revised agreement with the original terms and make a motion? Member Lorenzo thought Council should move on. Mayor Clark said in fairness to the fact that we have had Dr. Lippe, Mr. Koster, members of the School Board and the Board of Trustees here since 7:30 pm to afford the opportunity to leave if they are so inclined. He asked if anyone wanted to make a motion?

Member Capello asked if Council was to grant a license to use real estate not to the extent of a lease what majority of a vote would that require? Mr. Fisher said they needed to own it or lease it in order to bond.

Mr. Helwig said given whatís at stake, he suggested the administration have the opportunity to revisit this document with the school administration in light of

comments made. He asked that this item be continued until the next meeting to give them the opportunity to try to bring back to Council something that has been fine-tuned.

CM-02-11-310 Moved by Bononi , seconded by Landry; CARRIED

UNANIMOUSLY: To request City Manager to redirect attention

to the proposed lease agreement and/or if in the event the

School District is interested in pursuing it, an outright sale to

amend the agreement document, outline a for sale document

and bring it back to the next Council meeting for Council

consideration.

DISCUSSION

Member Capello asked if it would come back at the next meeting? Mr. Helwig thought given the extreme importance of whatís being accomplished and the timetable it is very important for the relationship that any comments that could be misconstrued tonight as

nonconstructive not fester. We should get back to work, try to solve this and bring back something Council could deal with.

Roll call vote on CM-02-11-310 Yeas: Landry, Lorenzo, Clark, Bononi, Capello,

Csordas

Nays: None

Absent: DeRoche

Mr. Fisher said, regarding Member Capelloís question, he thought under the Charter it was leasing, selling or disposing of any interest in real property. So if you are going to license it would probably come under there too.

Mayor Clark asked Member Capello, before proceeding, if he understood correctly that he would not be present on November 25th? Mr. Capello said thatís correct. Mayor Clark asked if Council wanted to put the school item on the December 2nd agenda when a full Council was available. He asked Mr. Helwig to convey that to Dr. Lippe.

Council recessed at 10:25 p.m. Council reconvened at 10:48 p.m.

Member DeRoche arrived.

Council consensus was to amend the agenda and move Item #10 under Matters

for Council Action between Items #7 and #8.

10. Consideration of request from Toll Brothers to amend the Island Lake

Residential Unit Development (RUD) Agreement Site Plan Number 99-58. The

proposed changes include:

1) An additional 5-acre parcel along Wixom Road to be incorporated into Phase 3 of the overall development;

2) A modification to permit single-family attached cluster homes in Phase 4B in the southeast corner of the overall development;

3) Revisions to the street layout in Phases 4 & 5 including relocating stub street connections to the east and west of the Ten Mile Road entrance.

The subject properties are located in Sections 18, 19, and 20, north of Ten Mile Road, between Napier and Wixom Roads. The subject property is approximately 907 acres.

Mayor Clark said the representatives of Toll Brother were willing to come back on December 2nd to address this issue due to the lateness of the hour. Mayor Clark asked Mr. Helwig and Ms. Cornelius to schedule this item at the top of the agenda.

CM-02-11-311 Moved by Capello, seconded by Bononi; CARRIED

UNANIMOUSLY: To postpone Item #10 consideration of

request from Toll Brothers to the Council meeting of Monday,

December 2nd.

Roll call vote on CM-02-11-311 Yeas: Clark, Bononi, Capello, Csordas, DeRoche, Landry, Lorenzo

Nays: None

Member Lorenzo suggested postponing this item until the next regular meeting. However, Council wanted to continue.

Member DeRoche suggested Council members submit written input for the second reading due to the lateness of the hour.

8. Consideration of Zoning Text Amendment 18.174 to amend Article 24,

Section 2405, of the City of Novi Ordinance No. 97-18, as amended, the City

of Novi Zoning Ordinance, relating to open space preservation, in order to

encourage the long-term preservation of open space and natural features

and the provision of recreation and open space areas in accordance with

P.A. 179 of 2001. First Reading.

CM-02-11-312 Moved by Capello, seconded by Landry; CARRIED

UNANIMOUSLY: To approve the First Reading of Zoning Text

Amendment 18.174 to amend Article 24, Section 2405, of the

City of Novi Ordinance No. 97-18, as amended, the City

of Novi Zoning Ordinance, relating to open space preservation,

in order to encourage the long-term preservation of open

space and natural features and the provision of recreation and

open space areas in accordance with P.A. 179 of 2001.

Roll call vote on CM-02-11-312 Yeas: Bononi, Capello, Csordas, DeRoche,

Landry, Lorenzo, Clark

Nays: None

9. Consideration of request from Blair Bowman of TBON LLC, for Preliminary

Site Plan approval on Site Plan Number 02-25, Wetland Permit approval and

for an appeal of the Planning Commissionís denial of a Woodland Permit for

the Novi Expo Center. The subject property is located in Section 16, north of

Grand River Avenue and west of Taft Road. The developer proposes an

exposition convention and conference center in the EXO (Overlay) District.

The subject property is 54.82 acres.

Blair Bowman displayed a Power Point presentation detailing the steps taken to locate the property in Novi, road improvements and Ordinance work. The current revenue generated in the community is about $190 million and would be approximately a quarter billion dollars worth of economic activity in the first year of operation in the new facility. This project is currently in the site plan approval phase and they are prepared to submit a design that is a great improvement from what was previously presented. This design has the use of perimeter screening and landscaping and larger unobstructed parking areas. It is a much-improved plan from all perspectives dealing with storm water, on site mitigation, landscaping and treatments.

Chris Cedergreen, President of Forum Studio, said the challenge was addressing an excellent functioning facility with the cost constraints and the planning and zoning requirements. They came up with a unique solution and a material that his firm has used in many projects and it gave a lot of capability in how they shaped and formed the building. This material can be used to shape the building with unique features and dramatic and dynamic spaces. However, this material is not in the ordinance. Theyíve increased the wetlands area. Functional aspects include skewed walls for design, space and functions that would give the building a strong identity and signature, etc. Mr. Cedergreen displayed their St. Louis headquarters, which is the same material the wanted to use on the Expo Center. This material is considered pre-cast material because there isnít another category and it is not allowed. It is in fact site cast and is not like pre-cast concrete as we know it, but it is cast on the site and tilted up. The tolerances, preciseness and finish achieved far exceed any pre- cast materials. Mr. Cedergreen displayed the Budco building in Highland Park, GAP headquarters in New York and St. Louis and Lucent Technologies in Florida. The material provided a handsome solution and exterior to these buildings. He showed the headquarters for the St. Louis Rams and as far as maintenance of this material, the building was 8 years old and looked as new as the day it was built. Mr. Cedergreen also showed the Detroit Concept Center in Troy that also used this material and Council could visit there to see the material. Theyíve made adjustments since the Planning Commission meeting. Theyíve changed the entrance to accommodate the entryway for vehicles to pull under, and changed handicapped parking areas have been relocated along the front of the building, the parking attendant booth had been relocated and the parking lot connection off the west drive has been relocated to align with existing drive. Large vehicle parking locations and truck loading dock locations have been identified on the site plan with some reconfiguring of space along the perimeter of the building and the entrance has been redesigned to include a covered drop-off and improved site circulation. The conference room/banquet hall entrance has been redesigned and improved to everyoneís benefit. The wetland mitigation area has been reconfigured to save existing woodlands along the southern site boundary as requested in the Planning Commission meeting.

 

Member DeRoche said, for the record, he appreciated the confidence the voters of Novi instilled in him last Tuesday in electing him the next State Representative.

Member DeRoche asked Mr. Bowman if the new material was as durable as what the ordinance was looking for? Mr. Bowman replied, after seeing the Budco building, it struck him as being consistent with the convention center/expo center atmosphere. They could build other traditional steel buildings but after seeing the Budco building and how durable it is, it is a much better product for the long term.

Member DeRoche said he drove by the Budco building and was impressed with how the faÁade looked. Member DeRoche stated they had drawn the economic line to be successful. Mr. Bowman responded they had been in this process for a long time, it has been evolving and improving at an ever escalating cost and at some point their budget got away from them. They had to re-look at things and how they could afford to do this and feasibly operate, as he did not want to get into a situation where the project would be destined to fail because it is too overburdened with costs. He thought they had struck the delicate balance between an extremely attractive, well planned and thought out building, which addressed most, if not all, of the concerns of the community. Mr. Bowman said this was their best efforts to this community and asked for approval as it is presented.

Member DeRoche asked if he was comfortable, with the changes to Grand River, Beck Road, Wixom Road and the interchanges, that the traffic improvements would be in place in a timely fashion that would help the City. People are hoping and counting on a net improvement and asked if that would be in place when they were starting their business? Mr. Bowman said they were counting on that too. Mr. Bowman stated even without any of the major road improvements planned, they would operate better in the new location than in the current location just because of the sheer volume of traffic generated by other users along Novi Road. The new site affords them the ability to have queuing, stacking and traffic management options that arenít available now. In the long term, as the improvements are put into place, they would increase the traffic management opportunities and it would be a much better situation.

Member DeRoche asked what their confidence level was about the ability to succeed and maintain that success for the long haul? Mr. Bowman stated as a private sector situation, they would still have obstacles to overcome but tonight would be a very important night, as they would have some certainty for the first time that this is a real project that they can build. If they can build it as proposed, it would allow them to tap into new sources of business, conventions, banquets, etc. as well as provide a much better environment for their existing business to grow and expand in as well. He said their business motto is pretty simple. It is about taking our business with us and making sure the business model works in doing that and then tapping new business opportunities. The banquet and meeting center is a very large part of that. The next steps to take place are financing and work with those on the construction side of things to make sure the

 

project comes off as planned. Mr. Bowman was very confident that would occur and would provide a strong place to operate from for the future.

Member DeRoche stated for the record, one of his primary concerns was the economic viability of this important corporate entity in Novi and what they do for the overall strategy put in place in 1975 by making Novi a destination retail City and having our budget and economic future based on that. To have an Expo Center that pumps in over $180 million a year into every other business that we have set up in the City, it is a very important company to keep in Novi. Member DeRoche said he knew the Expo Center was pursued by other cities and that there might or might not have been better offers made and people could always go back and say the reason the Expo Center was trying to stay in Novi was because Novi is the best place to be. However, through time and this process, it has already been three years and he didnít know how long that would stay a fact. He had seen in the City great challenge coming upon it right now with

companies that we never thought weíd see move outside of our City borders. K-Mart, Service Merchandise and Vicís have all moved out and it puts a lot of weight on the Council to say how far can we go in affecting someoneís economic viability with the restrictions that the ordinance has placed on that business. Member DeRoche said he had followed the approval process for Main Street and personally thought that Mr. Chen might have made accommodations to get the approvals for his project that have limited his economic opportunities to go forward. Perhaps Mr. Chen should have said no to some of the things that City Council and the Planning Commission asked of him.

Member DeRoche would hate to see Council put that on the Expo Center and set them up with an economically losing proposition that would catch up with them in a number of years. He thought Mr. Bowman was a smart businessman and had been very successful so Member DeRoche was willing to take a certain amount of the business plan on faith with someone who actually knows how to run an Expo Center because he wanted to see it there for a very long time. The malls, hotels and restaurants have been built and we need someone in town to make sure that Novi is still the place for these people to be and not the next suburb 15 miles down the freeway. He thought the Expo Center was a big part of their long-term strategy in the City and after three long years we are faced with the prospect of saying yes, build it. It is going to be a net positive to the City as far as growth in their business as well as people that visit our City and also a net benefit in traffic. He believed that is the big picture and that those items have been met. Member DeRoche stated he would support this project.

Member Lorenzo commented that while some businesses have left, we do have OST coming in. She did not want to give the public the impression that Novi was losing a lot of our businesses and other businesses were not considering Novi because she thought the OST Districts were doing well. In fact, Mr. Helwig included in the last packet a list of people that were coming to town.

Member Lorenzo said she could compromise on a lot of issues such as facades, wetland impacts or additional landscaping, however she would not compromise on traffic safety and flow. That is the biggest singular issue she has with the

proposal as it stands. Council has many pages of notes from Mr. Arroyo that have not been addressed appropriately or at all. She couldnít vote for the project unless some of them change. She named a few such as the middle drive on Grand River was proposed to be only 24 feet and its been changed to 28 feet and it was also recommended by Mr. Bowmanís traffic consultant that it should be widened to 40 feet. The middle drive on Grand River would have a throat of only 44 feet and a short throat typically caused traffic congestion and safety problems. A serious effort should be made to provide a longer driveway throat. Mr. Bowman increased it to 65 feet and the ITE standards are 150 feet. One of the concepts for the move was to improve the traffic circulation, access and flow. In many of Mr. Arroyoís comments there are going to be conflicts within their center and the outside with the businesses to the south. She felt the Expo Center and Grand River would not function properly and it has been the Cityís goal to divert traffic from Ten Mile to Grand River and making Grand River the main thoroughfare that it is supposed to be. She was also concerned that with these types of traffic problems, new OSTís developments would not be attracted to this corridor. She asked Mr. Arroyo to address these issues.

Member Lorenzo asked Mr. Arroyo if he had been able to make the statement in his reports that no unreasonable traffic impacts would result from the use proposed, which is a requirement in the Exposition Overlay District?

Mr. Arroyo said it had not been explicitly made in their reports but he did indicate there were three key issues that affect reasonableness of traffic flow to and from the site. He noted they had the operation of the facility because of the fact that during many of the events, there are tolls taken to park in the site and that has a significant impact on how this operates. It is the one thing the City doesnít have direct control over because it is an internal, private operation how they collect the tolls. So how this facility would operate would depend upon the design of the road network outside, the internal flow and the ability of the toll takers to adequately process traffic coming in. The efficiency of that toll system would have to be monitored.

Another issue is the opposite side driveways in providing access. In particular, it is the existing uses that are located to the west of the easterly drive. These businesses are located in a position where when traffic is queuing up to turn left into the proposed Expo site it would be difficult, if not impossible, for someone heading westbound on Grand River to make a left turn into their property on the south side. He hoped there would still be some exploration through the process whether tonight or as part of the final site plan approval to try to minimize the impact of those users on the south side of Grand River.

The third item involves the center driveway, as it should have a bigger throat when open. Typically when there is a heavy user with heavy traffic movement, in you want to provide for a throat so that you can get in before having to make decisions about which way youíre going to turn. The applicant has indicated that any time the drive is open, there would be cones places on either side of the cross access isle so you canít turn and would have to come up and go into the internal parking circulation system. If that is controlled properly it could have the

same benefits of a channeled entranceway with a deep reservoir for traffic to queue up. If not operated properly it would cause problems. Also, there are other driveways that are located to the east and on the south side where it was not meeting the driveway spacing standards. One possibly that would offset the negative impacts was to make this a ride in/ ride out driveway. If that was done they would not have to be concerned with outbound left turns conflicting with outbound left turns coming out of the driveways on the south side. This could be considered or the other way would be to get more information from the applicant and have them respond as to when they proposed to gate the drive, cone it off and how that process would work. He suggested asking the applicant for that information to get a clearer understanding.

The next item in his letter was 17.3 and they agreed to amend and itís been addressed. Item 19, were items that needed to be addressed but he did not consider them major items and thought they should be addressed on final site plan. The applicant has not objected.

Mr. Arroyo noted those were the major issues and if resolved this could operate in a reasonable manner given the type of use that it is. However some shows would tax the capacity of this system. The second and third highest shows were used to adopt reasonable standards that would work most of the time. For most operations, peak hours and peak days there should be reasonable flow in and out as long as their internal operations are working and these comments are addressed.

Member Lorenzo asked if he was satisfied with the Traffic Impact Study? Mr. Arroyo said they were generally satisfied with it. Thereís always a point where you have to decide how many details youíd argue over. While we arenít in agreement with every single thing in the study, they did find it reliable enough to draw the conclusions they needed to draw.

Member Lorenzo said, for the record, there would be times when the off site traffic impacts would degenerate the actual LOS to some degree. Specifically, Taft Road and Grand River would go from the existing A to B and Saturday from C to D. Mr. Arroyo said correct, but it is still acceptable. Member Lorenzo said until Mr. Arroyo could say there were no significant impacts, she could not support the project.

Member Landry stated the EXO Overlay Ordinance provided that Planning was to review the proposed site plan. The Planning Commission is charged with comparing the site plan to the ordinance, having a healthy discussion on where the site plan meets the ordinances and where it doesnít. That is exactly what they did and they laid out for Council all of the instances where it meets and doesnít meet and therefore had done exactly what they were supposed to do. He didnít interpret that as the Planning Commission not supporting the Expo Center, and not that they were against the Expo Center but did interpret that as they did exactly what they have been charged to do so Council could make an informed decision. They did a very good job in this instance. Council could now decide if waivers should be granted or whether complete compliance should be insisted

on or whether in the overall interest in the project because of its uniqueness, it might merit some waivers. Member Landry thought it did.

Member Landry thought with several minor changes, approval could be given for the project. 1) parking attendant structure should be set back and they have done that 2) The ordinance required 10 tractor trailer parking spaces and only 5 have been provided. The ordinance, Section 2505 C19 requires a minimum of 10 and he would look for that to be provided 3) Safety paths along Taft Road or money being escrowed. He didnít encourage the use of Taft Road for this project so he didnít want the safety path built now but did want the money escrowed 4) Loading issues Ė The Planning Commission said as the site plan currently stands, the site plan doesnít comply with the ordinance for interior, exterior, side yards. Member Landry said one is in the rear and commended the applicant for the way he tucked the loading in the back as not to be seen by traffic on I-96. The west side, an interior side yard should be toward the rear and said it begins at 270 feet on a 390-foot building. The northeast side yard will require a ZBA variance. 5) Traffic issues Ė same side driveway spacing on the east could be dealt with during final site plan and he would be willing to move forward with that issue tonight. The opposite driveway spacing on the east could be done at final site plan. 6) The center drive concerned him because the throat being so small is a safety hazard. He asked if it was possible to construct something like a gate arm rather than relying on the applicant to put cones in so that when using it for interior circulation it could be put up and when using the center drive bring it down. Mr. Arroyo said they could be installed but he didnít think theyíd be substantially more attractive but it could be explored at final site plan.

Member Landry agreed and said he would want to see clearly attached to any approval tonight a right in and right out drive restriction. Member Landry asked Mr. Arroyo, regarding the west drive, if he was suggesting that the 70 degrees versus the 90 degrees was unsafe? He said it didnít meet the ordinance standards and ideally 90-degree intersections should be met where you can. One possibility was trying to work so that as much as possible approaching Grand River the 90 degrees is met. The idea is people should approach the intersection as close to 90 degrees as possible. Mr. Arroyo suggested asking Mr. Bowman to respond why that would be difficult for them or if there is anything that they believe with their internal site configuration that they could do at final site plan to try to address the approach to meet City standards. It only has to be met at the approach.

Mr. Bowman stated he didnít think they could meet the ordinance because this will be a significant improvement from a traffic management standpoint. They are proposing three entrances in and out of the property, which will be a major benefit. The second event has been used as a benchmark for this. He said they want to use the Center access on an as needed basis and they will manage the traffic flow with cones, gate or what ever will work. Regarding the main entrance, the drive will be at 90 degrees. The west drive is an existing drive and they have significant impacts when trying to adjust that to get a 90-degree angle as it impacts the internal aspects of the parking lot. They had extended the thoroughfare, moved the internal access drive to the parking lot to line up with

the existing drive with the Industrial use to the west. All of the intersections along Grand River are at the same angle because Grand River is at an angle. They are trying to maintain and stay consistent with what is there and felt it would be a very safe and manageable traffic pattern.

Member Landry asked if the major obstacle to making the west drive 90 degrees was the loss of parking spaces. Mr. Bowman stated that was part of it but they would also have to acquire the adjacent property as well and they were not in a position to do that.

Mr. Arroyo said it would depend on what kind of arrangement they had with the adjacent property owner. The drive could be shifted to the east and then align it so that it was 90 degrees but he didnít know if it would violate some agreement they had for easement or access.

Member Landry commented the other big issue is the faÁade. Mr. Necchi reported itís a unique material and Member Landry said it is a unique project. If approved, he couldnít imagine there would be a danger of anyone else building an Expo facility in the City. He understood this is the fourth version of the faÁade they had looked at and the most expensive. He liked the faÁade and would be willing to grant the Section 9 faÁade waiver on this project. However, in giving the major faÁade he would look for the extra 10% landscaping along Grand River. He asked how tall the light poles were? Mr. Bowman said they needed to comply with a number of different ordinances and circumstances and always considering safety, which is paramount. The poles would be 35-40 ft. high and was not out of the ordinary in the area and they would work with the designers and consultants during the final site plan process to make sure it is attractively done. Novi has a very specific ordinance regarding lighting and they would comply. Member Landry asked if they had any particular interest in having them high? Mr. Bowman said as long as itís a safe and comfortable environment. Member Landry asked if they would be decorative? Mr. Bowman said they would be very attractive fixtures and would work with the scheme of the building and everything else. Member Landry commented he would like them as low as possible because of spill over to surrounding properties. Member Landry said the Planning Commission had noted additional landscape islands should be constructed throughout the front parking lot to break up the sea of asphalt and he totally supported that. He didnít agree with the parking structure and didnít think it would be economically feasible to require Mr. Bowman to do that, but he did want the landscaped islands.

Member Landry said the Planning Commission asked that they remove the future parking area from the site plan but he didnít think that needed to be done at this point. He would rather get as integrated a plan now as possible. He would support this project with the suggested changes.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi stated she would have to have Mr. Arroyoís minimum plus comments with regard to traffic configuration design and impact addressed. She would not negotiate on that. This is the opportunity to get it right and there are also concerns for other businesses that would also develop on Grand River as

the corridor improvements are made. She shared the concerns of others regarding the traffic problems and was concerned about the bottleneck at the front of the project. She was not convinced it could be a consistent applied maintaining function. Regarding the Section 9 FaÁade waiver, she would support that because the building design is complimented by a unified material. She would be looking for the City Engineer to comment on what the feasibility standards were regarding storm water management prior to site plan approval. Regarding wetland mitigation ratio for wetland #7, she didnít think it had been addressed. Mayor Pro Tem Bononi said the item is, with regard to the wetland mitigation ratio for wetlands 7 and it is to be decided between the City and the applicant with respect to the 24 inch water main construction on the west side of the property; we are impacting here and asked Ms. Kay what she suggested.

Aimee Kay, JCK representative, reported that some of the issues with regard to that had already been addressed. She just wanted to get it on the record at the prior Planning Commission meeting because they didnít have, at that time, plans specific to some of the acreage with regard to the City of Novi water main construction project. Since then we are correct in their acreages that are attributed to the Novi Expo Center, which is roughly .15 acres of fill for Wetland #7 and roughly the same for the City of Novi. Mayor Pro Tem Bononi said then this can be reflected on the plan? Ms. Kay said it would probably be adjusted and it could be attended to at final site plan.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi agreed that additional parking landscaping islands should be constructed throughout the front parking lot area to break up impervious surface. She felt with the other concessions being made that the landscaping islands were not a real imposition. She asked Mr. Arroyo to comment on lighting specification regarding night sky situation as a result of those standards. Mr. Arroyo stated they would have to meet the Cityís exterior lighting standards. Therefore, all fixtures would have to be full cutoff fixtures. They would likely be the shoebox style lights, which would direct the light directly down. He said more poles would be necessary if they are lower and they could look at that at final and find a way to minimize the impact from the street side. Mayor Pro Tem Bononi said she wouldnít consider a waiver for lighting and noted it must meet ordinance requirements. She would also look for rooftop HVAC screening and asked if it would be provided? Mr. Bowman said it would and in the plans that were submitted, it gave a couple of perspectives from the standpoint of the grades and the parapet pipe and the placement of the units would not be seen from the road or expressway.

She stated this architectural drawing was superior to the others. She would support the requirement of an additional 10% landscape along Grand River. She asked if Mr. Bowman was in agreement to remove future parking from the site plan? Mr. Bowman stated he would like not to. He said it was prudent to show, in concept form, where it would go and what it would be and as needed it would be used to offset any lost spaces

 

 

 

from development. Mayor Pro Tem Bononi commented she was not interested in seeing any Taft Road improvements and anything that would have been required of him with regard to the pathway she would consider to be held in abeyance. She hoped Mr. Bowman would receive the comments she had made in a spirit of give and take.

Member Csordas asked if there was only one toll booth, did that mean everyone had to come through there? Mr. Bowman said no, it was not a tollbooth it was an attendant booth used for supplies, etc. Patrons would be dealt with at any of the three entrances as needed. Member Csordas asked if Taft Road would be an entrance? He said it would be de-emphasized in the first phase of the development and they were proposing that an asphalt connection to an existing roadway that could be used at only the peak periods that would require it and as an additional access point for emergency vehicles. Member Csordas agreed with putting the pathway funds in escrow. He agreed with the same side driveway spacing comments and hoped they would do their best to align the driveways. Member Csordas asked Mr. Arroyo if the depth of the entranceway was the depth of the throat. Mr. Arroyo replied they needed a Design and Construction Standards waiver for excessive driveway width for the east driveway and he didnít have a problem with that because it was an unusual use. Member Csordas thought this was a unique project and deserving of a Section 9 FaÁade waiver. He was neutral regarding the number of islands, as he didnít know how they could break up the asphalt anymore but would support his fellow Council member on that. Member Csordas agreed with all the comments regarding light poles. He asked what the Planning Commission meant by "enhancing the front entrance"? Mr. Bowman said that has been done and Council has it in their packets as part of the enhanced proposal. They relocated the handicapped parking, put in the traffic circle approach to things, the drop off point, extending a canopy out and concentrated on the conference/banquet center area to give it added emphasis and a special look. Member Csordas agreed that the parking structure was not necessary or feasible.

Member Csordas asked about the 36-inch tree and what was being done. Mr. Bowman said he addressed it at the Planning Commission and found that it was not in a location that made any sense to save. They would have to make significant design alterations to a very significant part of their traffic management in the rear of the project. He didnít believe they could provide a design that would save it.

Member Csordas talked about the additional10 % landscaping on Grand River. He saw it to be the area west of the most easterly entrance to the site. It is landscaped to the east and west and there is a wetland area there. Then there is parking on the west side of the property. He asked about the length of the area and the exposure to Grand River? He said they had worked with Planning and Plan Review said this is another example where they worked with the Planning and Plan Review and significant adjustments were made. There is an expanded area, a larger berm and parking has been adjusted in the front. It is to be bermed in natural landscaping. He thought they were already proposing more than the required amount of landscaping. Member Csordas asked if these were

subsequent to this report from the Planning Commission? Mr. Bowman said no, they were not and they tried to explain to the Planning Commission that he was very confident and comfortable with the landscape plan. The main entrance focus would be about 600/700 feet along Grand River where the berming would take place and at that point you would see over the top of the berm and be looking into the vista of the building and that is what is intended for the traveling public. Once in the parking lot they needed access and availability of large unobstructed parking areas to direct and deal with the traffic as needed. They were proposing that they concentrate on the perimeter screening and perimeter natural features instead of breaking up landscape islands in the middle of the parking lot.

Pat Conroy, Landscape Architect, said the berm would be three to four feet; the greenbelt has been widened 20 additional feet beyond the ordinance requirements, which makes it 40 feet wide. It was their intention that the majority of the cars would not be seen from Grand River. They are using evergreen trees, hedging and more of a formal look. Member Csordas asked Mr. Arroyo if there was any landscape opacity requirements along Grand River and if the project met them? Mr. Arroyo stated 80% opacity was requested along Grand River and into the site. Member Csordas asked if that was more or less than the ordinance required? Mr. Conroy said it was what the ordinance required. They would mix deciduous and evergreen trees to get the year around affect. Member Csordas said it sounded like there was additional landscaping along there and thought that maybe it was enough but felt it was a judgment call for every individual but it seemed like enough for him. He saw no problem leaving in the future parking. Mr. Arroyo said the reason why future parking is usually brought up as a site plan issue is there is a question as to whether or not it is being approved or not. If it says future, there could be a question in the future of whether or not it was actually approved on the preliminary site plan or was it intended to be shown in concept. If the intent is to approve it now, that it is reviewed that way and during final site plan be reviewed as approved future parking that might not be built now but might be built later. If it is not going to be approved now, then it would have to come back with a revised site plan.

Member Csordas asked if they thought they could do the right in/right out at the center driveway? It was a great idea. Mr. Bowmanís response to right in/right out was that if his traffic consultant didnít think it mattered, it wouldnít matter to him. Mr. Bowman said operationally they wouldnít catch a whole lot of right in traffic before trying to bring in traffic and ease the concern of the backlog in the left hand turn lane. Mr. Bowman said anyone coming from the east would be turning into the main entrance. He thought that would be an inlet point that we could on an as needed basis direct traffic into there from the left hand turn lane to prevent the excessive stacking if it was occurring. They had also suggested they could work with signalization and probably reduce by half the queuing that was represented in their traffic report. They would be willing to do that as well. He would like to maintain it as a full access, but if it is an absolute breaking point with the community that would be something they would do. Mr. Conroy said they tried to focus on handling the traffic on site and managing the events they might find that even allowing full access at the center driveway if there is a peak

event they might not want to operate it that way. He would not want to operate it with left in and left out if it would not work with the County, the City or the coordination on Grand River because it doesnít benefit him. Having an option for full access might provide maneuverability at the other two access points. Mr. Arroyo suggested looking, at final approval, at no lefts out, but allowing lefts in. It would assist them in trying to manage the inbound left flow from eastbound Grand River into the site and also address the Cityís concern about driveway spacing. Mr. Bowman agreed. Member Csordas commented he would support the project.

Member Capello noted a lot of the Planning Commissionís concerns had been addressed in this packet. He asked if they agreed with 10 tractor-trailer spaces and Mr. Bowman responded they were on the site plan now and at final they would be identified and labeled. He asked if they agreed to escrow funds for the Taft Road safety path? Mr. Bowman didnít agree to that because he didnít think that if anyone practically looked at it that it would occur. If it were determined by the community in the future that it would have to be provided, that would be a commitment they would make. He asked why they would be asked to put something monetarily away when in essence it is requiring us to do it. Member Capello asked if there was any other way to be sure that the money would be available besides a cash bond, escrow or letter of credit? Mr. Fisher stated a deed restriction could be used representing a petition on the property ownerís part for a special assessment for the improvement. Mr. Bowman said that would be fine. Member Capello asked if they were still going to discuss driveway spacing with the consultants in the final stages? Mr. Bowman said they would, but there was no location that wouldnít require a waiver. He asked if he would discuss the center driveway with Mr. Arroyo and a better means to utilize it? Mr. Bowman said he would. Member Capello asked if the existing driveway was where the new drive would go? Mr. Bowman said yes, exactly where it would go. Member Capello thought if the drive was at a 78-degree angle it would not be noticeable. Member Capello asked if the 10% additional landscape was already done in the current plan by adding the extra 20 feet and additional trees? Mr. Bowman said yes. He hoped that Council was comfortable with the landscaping as proposed. They tried to address and meet the concerns in the initial plan reviews and it has been doubled along the front berm. Member Capello asked if they were going to address at final site plan the light poles, type, size and illumination. Mr. Bowman said they had to meet the ordinance and they want to be concerned about safety and the proper placement of the poles. Member Capello said, regarding landscape islands, he understood it was not possible to put them within the existing park areas and that they had buffered the exterior of the parking lot itself so it is not visible from outside of the site. He asked if he was asked to do more at the ends of the aisles with landscaping? Mr. Bowman said they did that and most doubled in size with the redistribution of handicap spacing, theyíve doubled island sizes in every other one. He thought to try to throw 5 or 8 landscape islands to break it up would not provide the intended effect and it would provide for significant issues for our operations, maintenance, etc.

 

 

 

CM-02-11-313 Moved by Capello, seconded by Csordas; MOTION CARRIED:

To approve the preliminary site plan for Novi Expo Center

SP 02-25, grant the wetland permit, grant the woodland permit

appeal for the proposed Novi Expo Center located in Section

16 north of Grand River Avenue west of Taft Road subject to

the required waivers and variances as set forth in most recent

consultant review letters together with the changes before

Council this night as recommended by the Planning

Commission. The addition of 5 tractor spaces for a total of 10 tractor spaces, the deed restriction regarding the sidewalk/safety path along Taft Road, to have the applicant discuss with consultants during final driveway spacing on the

east and west driveways, to discuss with consultants during final the location and type of traffic utilizing the center

driveway, to pursue relocating, if possible, the degree angle of the westerly driveway, to be assured during final that there is a 10% additional landscaping from initial application, to discuss with consultants at final the light poles, the intensity of the lights and the height of the poles and to break up some of the asphalt areas with additional islands regarding the Grand River frontage parking lot and to grant the Section 9 FaÁade waiver.

DISCUSSION

Mayor Clark noted he had supported the Expo Center from its inception and felt it was a positive for the community to move it off Novi Road. He appreciated traffic concerns but thought even with those concerns with the improvements that are coming at the interchanges, improvements in close proximity to the Expo site, both ingress and egress, and with the improvements to Grand River, this would be a plus for the community. Mayor Clark said it is a mixed blessing with successful shows and retail causing traffic congestion. Itís a major long term plus to the community that will benefit existing businesses in terms of relieving some of the traffic. It is a major long term plus for this community as an economic impact to the City and not just from the tax base generated from the Expo Center but by the benefit to the existing and developing businesses in this community. He thought it would be a positive for development along Grand River that is an area that has languished for a long time. He felt the pluses far outweighed any perceived minuses. He agreed with all of the comments of Member Landry.

Member Landry asked about the EXO Overlay Ordinance specifically states as a condition to granting approval "the City Council shall receive a report of the transportation professional that no unreasonable traffic impacts would result". He said the motion states that the traffic concerns would be addressed at final and asked Mr. Arroyo if he could address those concerns at final and ultimately issue to Council that there are no unreasonable traffic impacts? Mr. Arroyoís letter didnít state this and this couldnít be approved, under the ordinance, unless Council received such a letter. Mr. Arroyo said he would defer to legal Counsel. Member Landry asked if he would be comfortable if there was an amendment to

this motion that required that not only these issues were addressed at final but that final approval not be given without his letter? Mr. Arroyo said that was up to Council in their motion but thought the potential existed that that finding could be made but he didnít know what the outcome would be of some of the items that are still under question. Mr. Bowman said this point was discussed at length when the EXO Overlay Ordinance was developed, as it was one of their main concerns. It was not pointing to the Cityís traffic consultant, it was a traffic professional that would provide that. He said they had provided a traffic study and report that clearly indicated that has been addressed. He had no problem with the motion as it stands but to place an additional requirement that the Cityís traffic consultant produce that, it would be different than what the ordinance says and different than what he understood and thought was negotiated when they dealt with this. A plan and a traffic study have been provided that showed exactly that. Member Landry replied he was not suggesting that waivers not be granted tonight but was concerned with the language of the ordinance and Mr. Bowman pointed out an interpretation of the ordinance whereby he would meet it and he might be right. Member Landry asked for clarification regarding the motion that it would call for 10% additional landscaping over what the ordinance minimum is. Mr. Bowman said that was his intent. He would support the motion if there was a requirement for additional islands be placed in the parking to break up the asphalt. Mr. Member Capello accepted the amendment.

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi commented that the islands were an absolute necessity, as they donít just deal with visual appeal. Many communities are requiring islands in large parking areas because, in time, they provide shade to 50% of the parking area because of concerns for people and for the temperature in large asphalt parking lots. Also, there is an affect of heat on asphalt on water quality. We are talking about quality of life issues here and she would like those islands added and if all of the other items are contained in the motion, as she understood them, she would also support the motion.

Member DeRoche didnít agree to the additional islands in the parking lot as this will take away parking spaces and will increase maintenance costs.

Mr. Fisher stated there were a number of waivers listed on the motion sheet and unless they had otherwise been addressed in the motion all these waivers are presumed to be granted. Member Capello stated he specifically said "all the required waivers and required variances".

Mr. Pearson said once preliminary site plan is granted, final site plan is an administrative process unless there is specific action to bring it back. Member Capello said he assumed that it was done administratively unless there was a problem so he did not ask that it come back as part of the final.

CM-02-11-314 Moved by Bononi, seconded by Lorenzo; MOTION FAILED:

To amend the motion to bring the final site plan back for

approval.

 

 

Member Capello thought the site plan was too complicated and thought the consultants had lived with it much longer than Council had and he felt they were more qualified with administration to approve this.

DISCUSSION

Member Lorenzo would not support the main motion but if the issues she raised were addressed by final and a report was received of no unreasonable impacts from Mr. Arroyo, she would support the plan at final. She felt it should come back to Council.

Mr. Bowman asked if, regarding to islands in the parking lot, if they were talking specifically about the Grand River frontage parking lot and if the motion was limited to that parking lot and using a line of islands to break it up he would agree to do that. As far as coming back for site plan approval he assumed the project would receive the reasonable scrutiny that any project would and not be placed under further additional scrutiny. He said they have been through a number of years of planning and had produced the best and final product. They were comfortable with the administration and consultants doing what was necessary that they do with a vast majority of projects and if they were required to come back again, then they were subject to coming away from this meeting again without having any certainty again as to what they would be confronted with in that final review process. He respectfully said they would look at that in a very difficult manner and requested that this be treated as any other project would.

Member DeRoche asked if the maker of the motion would accept that clarification of where the island requirement is and limited to that parking. If so, he would be agreeable to the motion. Member Capello said he would accept the clarification.

 

Roll call vote on CM-02-11-314 Yeas: Lorenzo, Bononi

AMENDMENT Nays: Capello, Csordas, DeRoche, Landry

Clark

Roll call vote on CM-02-11-313 Yeas: Csordas, DeRoche, Landry, Clark,

MAIN MOTION Clark, Capello

Nays: Lorenzo, Bononi

Member Lorenzo proposed that the remaining items be adjourned until the next meeting.

Member Csordas did not want to put off the pay raise. Mayor Clark said the City Manager and Clerk have waited long and patiently and in fairness to them it should be addressed. We have two outstanding employees with the best City Clerk in the State, bar none, who has done an outstanding job in this community. Mayor Clark said he didnít think anyone else other than Mr. Helwig would have shepherded this Council through the nightmare of Sandstone in the manner he has let alone bring it to a conclusion.

 

CM-02-11-315 Moved by Bononi, seconded by Lorenzo; MOTION FAILED:

To propose an annual salary increase of for the City Manager

totaling 3.6% retroactive to his last pay compensation

increase.

DISCUSSION

Member Landry would not support the motion because he would be in favor of a 5% increase. Mayor Clark agreed.

Roll call vote on CM-02-11-315 Yeas: Lorenzo, Bononi

Nays: DeRoche, Landry, Clark, Capello, Csordas

CM-02-11-316 Moved by Landry, seconded by Capello; MOTION CARRIED:

To provide the City Manager and the City Clerk a 5% increase

to their salaries to be retroactive to the appropriate date.

DISCUSSION

Mayor Pro Tem Bononi commented that from the standpoint of that number she didnít believe it was reflective of what is going on in the financial community with regard to cost of living adjustments and very difficult financial times. She also didnít believe it was necessarily commensurate with the increases that other people within the organization who work equally hard and produced fantastic results are receiving. They believed that from the standpoint of the most highly compensated folks at the top of the ladder getting the greatest compensation increase is not something that she considered to be conducive to leading by example. It is no reflection on the job that these people are doing but she would not support a 5% increase.

Roll call vote on CM-02-11-316 Yeas: Csordas, DeRoche, Landry, Clark, Capello

Nays: Lorenzo, Bononi

AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION

Richard Lemke was present representing Oak Pointe Church and addressed a point of clarification on an issue coming up on December 2nd for the Toll Brothers RUD. He thought when the Planning Commission submitted a negative recommendation on the 4B east they were under the impression that the Church preliminary site plan approval had expired. They have clarified with Mr. Fisher and others in the Planning Department that the Oak Pointe Church Preliminary Site Plan approval has not expired and they would be submitting final site plan drawings in the weeks to come.

Andrew Mutch, 24145 Hampton Court, spoke about the motion to direct the attorney to draft a for sale document to sell a portion of City owned parkland at Powers Park. The motion failed but he reminded Council that the Charter required bids for sale of City owned property. Also, State law prohibits Cities from selling parkland without a vote of the residents. He said his understanding of the history of the acquisition of that property is that it was actually purchased with funds from the DNR and that potentially includes restrictions on that property and he encouraged administration to do due

 

diligence on that before getting into any agreements with the school district. He thanked the Mayor and Members Capello and Landry for their opposition to that motion.

MATTERS FOR COUNCIL ACTION Ė Part II

The following items will be addressed at a future meeting.

11. Approval of Resolution authorizing execution of Agreement with Michigan Department of Transportation for Nine Mile Road Non-Motorized Pathway Grant, in the amount of $128,000.

12. Approval to award the Nine Mile Road Pathway Project to the low bidder, Jackson Contracting, in the amount of $249,201.14.

13. Annual salary increase for City Clerk and City Manager.

14. 2003 Schedule of City Council Meetings.

CONSENT AGENDA REMOVALS FOR COUNCIL ACTION (Consent Agenda items, which have been removed for discussion and/or action)

MAYOR AND COUNCIL ISSUES

1. Landon Co. request for extension on Promenade Project - Lorenzo

2. Band Shell Ė Mayor Clark

This item would be brought up December 2nd. Mayor Clark said the funding seemed to be a big issue. He reminded everyone that the City put up the Tim Pope Play Structure and that once the materials were bought the community volunteered to build it. He couldnít believe that with the architects, engineers and everyone else that if the City bought the materials and have the plan that this couldnít be put up in two days. It would be a great community project.

Member Landry asked if the Police Officers issue could be on the December 2nd agenda and Mayor Clark said absolutely.

COMMUNICATIONS

1. Letter from Sarah Gray (Housing and Community Development Advisory Committee

member) Re: Recommendation for 2003 Community Development Block Grant

funds.

ADJOURNMENT

The meeting was adjourned at 1:10 AM.

 

________________________________ ____________________________

Richard J. Clark Maryanne Cornelius

 

 

Transcribed by: _______________________

Charlene Mc Lean

Date approved: