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REGULAR MEETING OF THE COUNCIL OF
THE CITY OF NOVI
Mayor Landry called the meeting to order at 7:00 P.M.
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
ROLL CALL: Mayor Landry, Mayor Pro Tem Capello-absent/excused, Council Members Gatt, Margolis, Mutch, Nagy, Paul
ALSO PRESENT: Pamela Antil, Assistant City Manager
Tom Schultz, City Attorney
Kristen Kolb, SWOCC Attorney
Randy Auler, Parks, Recreation and Forestry Director
Sheryl Walsh, Community Relations Manager
Rob Hayes, City Engineer
APPROVAL OF AGENDA
Member Paul added, under Mayor and Council Issues, EITC.
CM-07-04-069 Moved by Margolis, seconded by Paul; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve the agenda as amended.
1. Arbor Day, Saturday, April 28, 2007
Mayor Landry presented a proclamation to Mr. Auler declaring Saturday, April 28, 2007 Arbor Day, and invited community members to join in the tree planting and festivities at Community Sports Park from 10 a.m. to noon.
Mr. Auler said everyone who attended the festivities at Community Sports Park would receive a free seedling to plant at their home in honor of Arbor Day. The Arbor Day ceremony would also recognize that for 15 years Novi had received the Tree City U.S.A. award. He said this year they were recognized with the Tree Growth Award for all the efforts of replanting of trees in our community in regard to the replacement of the Ash trees. Mr. Auler thanked the Mayor, Council, and everyone for their support.
2. National Library Week April 15-21, 2007
Mayor Landry presented a proclamation to Mr. Cutler of the Library Board declaring April 15-21, 2007 as National Library Week.
Mr. Cutler said it was a great Library with a great staff. He said anyone needing information, especially now with people looking for jobs that need help with their resumes, they have librarians who could help them. He hoped people would take advantage of that. Mr. Cutler said in November they would ask the residents of Novi to approve a bond to reconstruct or build a whole new building next to the current building for $16 million. He hoped people would come in and see why a new library was badly needed. He said they were the smallest library per capita in south east Michigan. He commented the Library Board was open to any suggestions about what the new library building should look like.
Mayor Landry offered congratulations to the City Clerkís Office for the completion of the census and said the goal had been met. He explained that about a year ago Council approved the funds for a census, which had to be increased by 10%. He said they went door to door, phone to phone and proved that Novi residents number 52,270. He said the census was being certified now and asked Ms. Cornelius to pass on congratulations to her staff.
Mayor Landry said Casimir Werda is a 23 year old Novi resident serving in the United States Army in Iraq. He attended Novi Middle School and graduated from Novi High School in 2001, where he was on the football, wrestling and lacrosse teams. Mayor Landry said on March 14, 2007, Pvt. First Class Werda was injured in Iraq when an IED, Incendiary Explosive Device, exploded on a direct hit to the Humvee in which Mr. Werda was serving as a machine gunner. He took shrapnel to the face. Mr. Werda sustained serious injuries, had numerous surgeries, and lost the vision in both eyes, and was currently in Walter Reed Hospital. Mayor Landry said in service to his country, Noviís Casimir Werda had given up his vision. He said his friends and family had started a web site, www. Casimir Werda.com, and he had asked SWOCC to do a graphic to put on the television screen now as he spoke. He said it was a wonderful web site and asked that everyone take two minutes of their time to check the web site out. He said a message could be typed in to Mr. Werda and it would be read to him in Walter Reed Hospital. Mayor Landry said he needed our encouragement and to know we wished him well, and looked forward to a time when we could give a little more of our respect to Casimir Werda in person. Mayor Landry urged everyone to take a couple minutes out for this young man from the City of Novi.
2. CITY MANAGER
Ms. Antil introduced Ara Topouzian to the Council and the community. Mr. Topouzian is Noviís new Economic Development Manager, and was the President and CEO of the Farmington/Farmington Hills Chamber of Commerce. She said Mr. Topouzian was very skilled and they were very excited that he had joined Noviís management team.
Mr. Topouzian said it was a pleasure to stand before Council as the new Economic Development Manager. He said Novi had a lot to be proud of and in the short amount of time that he had gotten to know Novi and research a bit of what Novi offered, he found Novi to be quite outstanding. Mr. Topouzian said as a City there was a lot to be proud of. He hoped he could do Novi justice by retaining, recruiting and continuing to make Novi a wonderful place.
Ms. Antil said the Cityís proposed 2007-2008 Budget was on the web site for those that were interested and could be seen at www.cityofnovi.org.
Background on City of Novi Branding options including entryway signage - Howard English and Sheryl Walsh
Ms. Walsh said three or four months ago they had brought a concept for entryway signage to Council, and Council asked them to go back and look at a more comprehensive drawing. She said Council liked the direction they were going but wanted them to look at more construction elements and exact ways they would do this, etc., and start working a little more firmly with a graphic designer. She said at the time, they had been working with a different advertising piece with the Ford Earl Agency through Oakland County. The City had taken out a full page ad in the Oakland County magazine, which was an initiative put forward by Brooks Patterson, which brought her and Mr. English together to work on an advertisement. She said in their first conversation Mr. English asked what the vision of the City of Novi was. Ms. Walsh replied that the 2006-2007 Budget said "where quality of life is the way of life", and he asked what the vision statement was, and she replied that the City really didnít have one. She told him Novi had great schools, was in a great location, and had excellent public safety. Mr. English said he and Ms. Walsh needed to get together and invited her to his office to see what could be done as far as an ad. She went to Mr. Englishís office and he gave her a tour and she saw that they also did entryway signage for communities. She told him that Novi was looking at entryway signage, and he said if they were looking for entryway signage and talking about advertising, they needed to pull it all together. He wanted to look at what was done as far as marketing pieces, and she showed him the Novi calendars, brochures, and a variety of pieces that had been done. Mr. English said those items were great but were not cohesive and there was no consistency whatsoever. She said they were before Council to look at the possibility of an entire branding concept for the City of Novi. Ms. Walsh said Mr. English would talk about what branding was and what it could do to further efforts with economic development and where the City wanted to position itself in the next 15 or 20 years.
Mr. English said three years ago they started this same conversation in Oakland County with Mr. Patterson and his economic team, prior to starting the economic development initiative, Emerging Sectors. He said Oakland County had the same type of branding issues where if looking at 100 different pieces they were producing for all different departments and purposes and it looked like 100 different people had put them together. He said there was no brand continuity. Mr. English said one of the first things they did with Oakland County was to get them together to look at where they needed to be in three to five years versus the campaign, where was the brand continuity that would talk about Oakland County and show that thereís a consistent message throughout all of the different elements within this campaign. He said what was being set up now was all of the different elements that had been produced over the last three years for economic development, and specifically for the Emerging Sector Campaign.
Mr. English said Oakland County went through the same issues when they started the initial development of the campaign. They went through the same situation looking at their brand and their brand statement, and tried to realize whether they were the symbols of where they wanted to be in three, five or ten years. He said knowing where the economy was going at that point, Mr. Patterson wanted to be able to project an image that was going to be attractive to major corporations both in the country and throughout the world. He wanted to bring new, fresh, emerging sector type companies to the county that would keep people employed and keep the tax base up. So, at that point, they thought perhaps what they had been using for years didnít project the image they wanted to project. As part of the campaign, they looked for a brand new logo that fit specifically to the campaign that was designed and each individual partner within the executive division would also use, which would help provide continuity throughout all of the departments in Oakland County. Then, as they started to produce the different pieces of the campaign everything came within a family book. He said when someone saw an Oakland County piece they knew it was an Oakland County piece because of the color, logo and spacing. Mr. English said the template approach was very good, and they had received great feedback from potential companies that wanted to come into the area.
Mr. English said within the three years of the campaign the programs brought in 45 new companies, attracted 298,000,000 new investments, 4,600 new jobs, retained 2,200 jobs, and brought in $7.2 million in taxes. He said this showed how powerful the continuity of the message could be, and the same procedure could be used for Novi. He commented that he found the same problems in Oakland County that made it look like it was done by 50 or 60 different people. Mr. English said that didnít give the beautiful brand statement that he thought was important for broadening business in Novi, and didnít give Mr. Topouzian the tools he needed to compete with other states. He said Novi really needed to take it up a couple levels because Mr. Topouzian would be competing at a State level so he needed all the information that could be provided. He said Novi needed everything from catch phrases to brand statements to make a cohesive look and feel, and then companies would realize that Novi was serious.
Ms. Walsh said branding would be a consistent message shared by all departments on all levels, such as the City web site, Channel 13, business forms, newsletters, and any communication the City had with the citizens, and community members of Novi. They would know immediately it was a communication from the City of Novi. She said the City entryway signage was what kicked this off. If there was going to be a brand identity, it needed to be there also as a welcome initiative to those coming into our community.
Mr. English said the pamphlet that each Council member received was the small version of the style guide they put together for the Emerging Sector Campaign. It was an important document because whether Ms. Walsh was working with it or someone in any Novi department or vendors Novi worked with it, this was really a guide to let them know the things they could and could not do with the logo, colors, etc. He said this was the type of style guide that needed to be done and was the reason there was brand continuity in a program. He said everything they needed to know was there and also a point person for them to go to if they had a question. He said it had been very beneficial to Oakland County, and they had done this for hundreds of different companies from the major Fortune 500ís to other local counties in the area. He stressed that it was a great element within the overall program too.
Ms. Walsh said this would enable the Parks and Recreation Department, the Engineering Division or anyone in the City to be able to look at the style guide, produce their own brochure or flyer, and they would all have a similar identity. She said other than the Novi City logo, nothing had a cohesive look because there were so many people creating them. She said if it was something that Council wanted to look at, they felt that now was the time. She said Mr. Topouzian was on board, they were moving forward with economic goals, embracing new City Council goals, looking at entryway signage and moving forward with a comprehensive marketing package for business attraction, retention and expansion. She thought now would be the time to embrace a concept of this nature.
Member Nagy said $53,100 was allocated for the signage and this would be an additional $5,000, and would have to go out for bids. She said to do an overall concept they were estimating between $19,000 and $20,000 but that would be if they looked at an entire brand identity creating a new logo, new identity, style guide and an entire comprehensive package. Member Nagy thought it was a great idea and much more professional than what theyíve had especially now that Novi had an Economic Development person. She said she liked the idea and would probably support it at budget time. However, she didnít want to spend the money on signage until this was done because it would influence what kind of sign there would be.
Ms. Walsh said they were recommending that they take funding from the $53,100 allocated in the 2006-2007 Budget to initiate a program of this nature. Then, the funds that remained could be allocated towards the signage program. Member Nagy agreed.
Member Margolis commented that she didnít have anything against the concept but her concern was that a lot of the materials they had, and the focus of this had been on the identity program, logos, and the specific look and feel of communications. She thought that was a valid and important goal; however, when talking about branding, she said having a new logo or consistent colors as an identity program, in many respects, was not a brand. She said what she would be looking for if this moved forward, was that they made sure this focused first on the brand of Novi. She said what she meant by that was that the concept looked first at what Novi stood for, and what they wanted people to think of when thinking of Novi. She said when City staff looked at this concept, she wanted them to know she believed that marketing and branding had to extend through how people experienced the City too. Member Margolis said for instance, a company couldnít be out there saying they had great customer service and thatís their brand, and yet when calling the help line no one answered the phone. She was not against marketing and branding but was very weary of branding that didnít have something behind it. She said this couldnít just be about logos and colors but had to be about what Novi was.
Mr. English reminded Council that in the beginning of this presentation he talked about the vision statement. He said he, or anyone putting this together, needed to know what the vision of the City was, what their three to five year plan was and where they wanted to be in five years. Then they would share that with the team, and give the marketing person the direction to create the right words and images. He said the whole thing should be very pinpointed and set together, similar to Oakland County. Mr. English said the look and feel would come from Councilís direction as to where the City would be in the future. He totally agreed with Member Margolis. Member Margolis said she wanted to see this incorporated with the Economic Development Manager and where that would go because thatís a real focus for her, and an important piece.
Ms. Walsh said that was why this was such a pivotal time because a comprehensive marketing piece would need to be developed to put Novi on the same playing field as other communities, counties, etc.
ATTORNEY - None
Joseph LaFleur, 23889 Meadowbrook Road, was concerned about the pathway the City wanted to put between 8 and 10 Mile Roads. He didnít understand why it had to be an 8 foot pathway since by Mission Hills there was a 5 foot pathway and coming out of Peach Tree there was also a 5 foot pathway. He said an 8 foot pathway would also be a safety concern because a biker could be hit when he backed out of his driveway. He said his home was 85 feet from the center of the road and 60 feet was City property going to the edge of his property. So, he was only 25 feet from the City easement. He asked that the pathway not be designed so that it came up to that line, and he would like the 5 foot pathway further away from his home if possible. He thought it would be better for his line of sight when backing out of his driveway. There are senior citizens that live in the first block south of Ten Mile and they would have to have it cleaned and they would have a problem getting an 8 ft. pathway cleaned and paying for it. Mr. LaFleur said they had already paved right from the side of the road for the first block south of Ten Mile with asphalt for bikers. He said the second block, which took it to Orchard Hills West, had an 8 ft. pathway all the way down to Meadowbrook Lake subdivision. He thought a 5 ft. pathway would make it easier to maintain for the senior citizens. He said there was only one ditch that wasnít filled between Ten Mile and Borchardt Road, and if it could be filled, it would make it nicer looking. He said even in the second block it would look a lot better if that could be filled all the way to Orchard Hills West, and move the pathway a little further out.
Diana Canup, 47201 Glamorgan, was present representing the Pioneer Meadows Homeownerís Association and spoke about Agenda Item #1, contracts for design work for Beck Road and Eleven Mile, and the design work for the reconstruction of Beck Road between 10 and 11 Mile Roads. She said there had been a couple of meetings regarding Beck Roads condition and the reconstruction of it from 8 Mile to Grand River, and there had been some dissent from members of the community. However, those who have lived off of Beck Road for many years remember when the road was dirt and its horrible condition, and the fight they had with members of the community regarding the paving of Beck Rd. Ms. Canup said the paving was done and was a benefit to the community. She said now the road needed to be done again. As taxpayers they were concerned that this was a band aid and they would like to see the major construction done from 8 Mile to Grand River all at one time, and to make it a uniform road like itís done up to 14 Mile Road. They would like to see four lanes with a median or at minimum three lanes. She said the money being used for the band aid process was a little disconcerting to many of the members of her subdivision because in just a couple years something else would have to be done because of the traffic on Beck Road. Ms. Canup just wanted it on the record that those who live right on Beck Road at 11 Mile and in the Beck Road area were very concerned about the condition of the entire stretch of Beck Road. She asked that Council take this into consideration and use their tax dollars wisely.
Steve Kosta, 23771 Meadowbrook, spoke regarding connecting the pathway from 8 Mile to 10 Mile. He said they were hoping the impact could be minimized to their existing properties with a 5 foot walkway rather than an 8 foot bike path. He showed Council photos of the water level in this area as he was concerned about it. Mr. Kosta said south of the bridge on Meadowbrook the homes were considerably higher and dryer. The subdivision that was just put in behind his subdivision was 36 feet higher than they were. He showed Council a photograph of a brand new piece of bike path that was put in and it was already bleeding water from the water plain, and there hasnít been the normal amount of rain. He said looking closely, Council would see that the water level was at the level of the concrete right now. Thereís sediment that drained out of the woods and he thought after a period of time with water running over it there would be some damage. Mr. Kosta said as far as the properties on Meadowbrook, they had taken the responsibility and had known all along that they had to keep the drainage ditches clean and clear to help the drainage problem. He showed Council an area that was not being kept clear, which was south of the new subdivision and there were wine and whiskey bottles and trash. He said if they were going to clean up these drainage ditches everyday, he thought someone ought to address that. He showed Council an example of the very large drain that was put in and was cluttered with debris. He said he didnít know whose responsibility it was to keep that clear but itís going to be essential in order to keep the pathway in working order. Mr. Kosta said this is what they do everyday; they go out and clean it up. He showed a drain pipe that was about a foot across; the drain pipe put in for the new subdivision was about four feet across and he doubted the contractor would have spent the extra money if it wasnít warranted. He didnít know where the information was gathered to put the path where it was but he wanted everybody to be aware of the potential for that path to be worn out and broken down by constantly moving ground. He said a 5 foot path would have the least impact but people didnít really want the path. Mr. Kosta gave the Clerk a letter from Ms. Stocker who was not present and Mayor Landry asked her to read it into the record.
"Good evening Mr. Mayor and Council Members
My name is Ann Stocker and my husband and I live at 23743 Meadowbrook. It is with great regret that due to previous commitments with workmen, I cannot address you face to face as I did last week with many of my neighbors regarding the proposed 8 ft. bike path that will essentially bi-sect our front lawns, lower our property values and look ridiculous.
If the City is concerned about money, safety, appearance and maintenance of this path, why put it on some of the lowest land in the City. Every strong rain floods our ditches driveways and half way up the yards. It has been a very bad joke for the 12 years my husband, Jeff, and I have lived here. The ground around the ditches is constantly eroding and unsafe to walk to close to. Any kind of path on top of well known swampy land makes no sense. The concrete will buckle and sink and need repairs or replacement sooner or more often by far than a path constructed on higher and more stable ground.
We have great concerns about liability issues due to this flooding factor and what this means to us financially. Many of us stand to lose perfectly healthy trees and bushes that were planted in what are now conflicting areas by prior owners. Many of us already have Ash trees we have paid to have removed or will be removing this year. Apparently there is no grandfather clause.
We also feel that we are owed the same courtesy of a vote that was given 3 other times the path was proposed and VOTED DOWN!"
Clifton Schneider, 20825 Meadowbrook, said apparently the Cityís plan was to go beyond the Cityís current right-of-way and take over 500 sq. ft. of his property. He said that was an extra 6 ft. past the current right-of-way and they had some concerns about that. He said there was a utility pole near the road and it looked like the Cityís plan was to angle the sidewalk away from the road before it hit the pole and then continue on at that distance further away from the road. Mr. Schneider said it was 84 ft. of frontage and his current fence would have to be pushed back and a lot of property would be lost due to this bike path, and would look ridiculous the way it angled away from the road and continued on. He pointed out that the City of Novi already had 170 miles of sidewalks and that was 10% more than the road mileage in the City. He agreed with the comment about putting this to a vote again. Itís been voted down 3 times, and it didnít seem that the residents on the road whoís homes would be most affected by this were really in favor of this plan.
Marilynn Miller, 22729 Meadowbrook, said they moved to Novi 31 years ago for open spaces. She said they didnít want sidewalks or bike paths, and they felt it was a perfect community. She said every time it went to a vote it had been voted down because they donít want it. Ms. Miller said they were upset that they would have to maintain it year around. She said there were other cities that had bike paths and shut them down in the winter time. She asked who would maintain it if they went away for two weeks; weíre going to have to pay someone so no one would fall on it while they were gone. It just doesnít make sense and she would like another vote on this.
John Debono, 22475 Meadowbrook, agreed with his neighbors and didnít want an 8 ft. wide bike path, and preferred the 5 ft. wide path by the road. He said he had two windshields on his vehicle broken by stones driving on Meadowbrook Road. He commented that when the plows come through in the winter time they plow the easement area and bring stones across the front of his home. Then when he brought his snow blower out there, he was afraid he would hit vehicles that drive by everyday in the morning. As far as the maintenance, it would be a win win situation for the City and the residents because if that area was paved the plows would clear the area and everyone could use it. He believed it would be a better situation for everyone to go with the 5 ft. bike path by the road, and to not go onto the residents properties because there would be more damage. He said the ground was so unstable he couldnít mow near the ditch because it would make ruts. Itís so soft he couldnít even walk on it.
Carol Gowans, 22743 Meadowbrook Road, asked everyone to personally take a walk on the sidewalks that already exist and see the differences, the widths, the black top and then take notice at the bridge area to see how that was designed, and how nice it was next to the road and taken care of. She invited Council to drive in and out of their driveways to experience what they do at different times of the day with the traffic, and then imagine a sidewalk there and the concern about bikers and walkers. She asked that they get out and look from their homes towards the road and from the road towards the homes considering it to be their home, and how they would feel to have the sidewalk placed this close to their homes. She asked that they report back to them about their findings and how they felt about it.
Bob Hearn, 41415 Glyme, said he was pro connect pathways, however he was opposed to the pathway being a bike pathway on this particular stretch of road. He asked Council to consider his fellow neighbors and that they had all bought their homes and property in the current state it was in. He asked that they respect that in consideration that there would be some compromise as to where the pathways would actually be located.
CONSENT AGENDA REMOVALS AND APPROVALS (See items A-E)
Member Paul asked that Item B be removed.
CM-07-04-070 Moved by Margolis, seconded by Nagy; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approved Consent Agenda as amended.
Roll call vote on CM-07-04-070 Yeas: Gatt, Margolis, Mutch, Nagy, Paul, Landry
A. Approve Minutes of:
C. Approval of Ordinance No. 07-18.214, an amendment to the Novi Code of Ordinances, Ordinance 97-18, as amended, known as the City of Novi Zoning Ordinance, Subsection 2506, to modify the standards for parking end islands. Second Reading
D. Consideration of request to set public hearing regarding the vacation of the Cityís interests in property described as part of a public highway, located at the intersection of West Lake Drive and South Lake Court.
E. Approval of Claims and Accounts Ė Warrant No. 743
MATTERS FOR COUNCIL ACTION Ė Part I
1. Approval to award a contract for design and construction engineering services for the 2007 Beck Road short-term improvement projects (Project 1 Ė Beck/Ten intersection improvements; Project 2 Ė Repair and re-pave Beck from Ten Mile to Eleven Mile) to URS Corporation for a not-to-exceed design fee of $36,060 and a construction engineering fee equal to a fixed 6.5% of construction cost (estimated to be $17,940) for Project 1 and 6.0% of construction cost (estimated to be $23,400) for Project 2 for a total of $77,400.
Ms. Antil advised Council that they added additional information for Council to discuss. These items were Consideration of Beck Road Project 3: Repair/Re-Paving North of Eleven Mile Road. She said a number of questions were raised that were discussed at staff level today and Council would notice that would give them an additional option to discuss tonight if Council wished. She said with this additional information from City Engineer Rob Hayes, Council could still award this to the same firm, which was still the low bidder even by adding project 3. She noted that this project was always included as an alternative.
Member Mutch said while reviewing this project one of the things that came out in the original proposal was the fact that the Phase 3 segment of this project, which was from Eleven Mile north to the existing southern entrance to Providence Hospital, was not included. He said the rationale given for that was lack of funding, the upcoming budget and the major street portion of the budget. When looking at the numbers provided that was the smallest dollar amount of the three segments. He said Beck Road had been through the Beck Road Interchange, and replacement of either the water or sewer line. Because of Beck Roads priority with Council, rather than doing the Eleven Mile segment in a future budget year, it made more sense fiscally and for resident convenience to do as much as possible in one construction season. Member Mutch said he asked the Administration for some numbers, which they provided, and he indicated to them that tonight if they were to approve this, he would make a motion to incorporate all three phases. Then, while having the budget discussions for the upcoming budget, they could look at where the money was being directed for the various road funds, and make sure enough money would be set aside for the switch. He said Phase 3 would require approximately $220,000 beyond what was currently budgeted.
CM-07-04- Moved by Mutch, seconded by Paul; MOTION WITHDRAWN:
To award the contract for design and construction engineering Services for the 2007 Beck Road short-term improvement projects Including all three Phases to URS Corporation for a not to exceed design fee of $36,060, and a construction engineering fee equal to a fixed 6.5% of construction cost for Project 1, and 6.0% of construction for Project 2, and 6.5% of construction (estimated to be $11,295 for Project 3, and the cumulative total of $100,275.00.
Member Mutch asked if the percentage of construction would be the same for Project 3. Mr. Hayes said the percentage would be 6.5% of construction (estimated to be $11,295 for Project 3), and the cumulative total of $100,275.00. Member Mutch asked to have that added to his motion.
Member Paul asked Mr. Hayes if he was planning to take the $220,000 out of the Neighborhood Road Project this year to pay for Phase 3. Mr. Hayes said, as it stood now that was where the money would have to come from. Member Paul was concerned about that because she did a driving tour of many neighborhoods and there were so many neighborhood roads in horrible condition that were competing with each other. She said that was not to say that she didnít want to put priority into Beck Road, but her concern was there was a lot more construction traffic yet to happen on that stretch of road. Member Paul said she wanted to blow out the Ten Mile intersection and would like to look at repaving between 10 and 11 Mile Roads. She was concerned that it was probably the worst portion of Beck Road. However, her concern was all the traffic that seemed to be coming from M-14 to funnel into the hospital project; it was not coming from 696 and I-96 all the time. It was coming from M-14 and flying up Beck Road. She said that was where she saw a lot of traffic; maybe they were just getting the intersection onto 696. Member Paul said the amount of money available was so small for these road projects, and Beck was such an important road that she was hesitant to put Phase 3 into this project until the hospital was further completed. She commented that another concern they had to think about was that Wixom Road would be done very shortly depending on when the State had the money to do that interchange. She thought they needed to consider when Wixom would be done so that Beck would be completed and both intersections wouldnít be blocked at the same time. She said funneling from Novi, Beck Road would be a major thoroughfare to get to 696. She stated she was very hesitant to take $200,000 away from neighborhood road projects, but if the funding could be taken from the General Fund, she might consider that portion of the project.
Member Gatt concurred with Member Paul. He said when talking about this a while ago, they talked about the construction that would take place with the hospital. He didnít think it would be wise to spend the money to fix Beck Road only to have construction trucks break it up. Member Gatt also concurred with Member Paul regarding the money put away for the neighborhood road projects as being too important to rob Peter to pay Paul. He said they would have to come up with other funding.
Member Nagy said she appreciated the spirit with which the motion was made by Member Mutch but could not support it. She thought $220,000 taken away from the neighborhood street program was just too much money right now. It was one thing if they could pull the money out of the budget but not out of the Neighborhood Street Fund. Member Nagy thanked Mr. Hayes for providing Council with the color photographs of Gilford and Nilan in Village Oaks. She said Nilan going east was very bad and she had also been driving around the City and found the neighborhood streets to be in horrible condition. She commented that this winter had made the streets even worse, and she didnít know how they would keep funding this. If the City had more money, there were even more streets that should be done, but she thought they were doing as much as possible financially.
Member Margolis stated she couldnít support the motion either. The City experts had given Council their priority lists and one of the priorities was to really relieve some of the congestion on Beck Road, which was the cause of a lot of the complaints the City received. She was concerned that by adding another project, and taking money away from neighborhood roads, it would not get the kind of attention it needed. She thought that was the major priority. She would be glad to make a motion to approve the original recommended action.
Mayor Landry said Beck Road was really a bone of contention in this community. He said, in his opinion, it needed to be widened and clearly needed to be able to handle more traffic. It was the major thoroughfare north and south between the freeway and M-14, and whether intended or not that was what it had become. He said there had been comments that it was just a band aid, and it was. However the alternative, which was to do it right, was going to be really expensive, and he didnít see it happening without a bond. He didnít know where the City would come up with enough money to do to Beck Road what really needed to be done without millions and millions and millions of dollars. If that was true, when would it get done? Mayor Landry commented he didnít see it getting done anytime soon. So, the question was what to do in the meantime, and something had to be done. Mayor Landry said one of the things that he thought everyone agreed on was that the Ten Mile and Beck Intersection had to be improved. He said they had to be able to have that intersection handle more traffic because if anywhere near it in the morning it was crazy. He said that had to be done, and then the question was what to do with the surface of the road. Mayor Landry stated we are just capping, thatís exactly what would be done. However, the alternative was to do nothing for the next 5 years. He said he would not support the motion because he didnít think they should put out more money than necessary until they got a final fix on this road. He would not support the motion but would support Projects 1 and 2 because it was truly a band aid, and he didnít want to spend anymore money on a band aid than they had to.
Member Mutch said he would withdraw his motion so that the motion that had the support of the majority of Council could be presented. However, he would respond to a couple of the comments noting that the Ten Mile and Beck intersection was funded in the Phase 1 portion of this project, and the money they were talking about coming from the Neighborhood Street
Fund the budget proposed another $1 million above and beyond what was spent on neighborhood roads this year. So, the $220,000 that was proposed to come out of the Neighborhood Street Fund was money the Administration said was an extra million above and beyond what was already spent in past years on a fairly consistent basis. He didnít view the proposal as taking money away from neighborhood roads any more than that. He also noted that his motion didnít direct that the money be taken from the Neighborhood Street Fund but that where it came from would be discussed at budget time. He said be that as it may, Council wanted to move forward on the first two Phases but he would raise this issue again at budget time because he thought they needed to address that segment. He thought Mayor Landry made some good points about it being a band aid, and a resident made a good point that it was a lot of money to spend on a band aid but he would also remind Council that the study did recommend that they do that. As Mayor Landry noted doing anything beyond what was recommended in that study was a multi million dollar proposal, which Council didnít have funding in place for. He stated he would support the motion and withdraw the motion he made.
Member Paul said, for clarification, for each mile on Beck Road cost anywhere from 1.4 to 1.7 million dollars. She said it was so expensive because the base was deteriorated, to lift the base, remove all the asphalt and concrete and do the catch basins again that was how much it was last year, and she was sure that number was not what it was supposed to be. Member Paul said for clarification, Project 1, the 10 Mile intersection, was just the engineering and what it would cost long term; and Council didnít have the right-of-way. She said this would be so much more and that was why she was hesitant to do Project 3 when they didnít have the right-of-way and that was the main priority. She commented she was willing to look at this during budget sessions but was still hesitant because Council had one and a half more years of construction at Providence. Member Paul said not to say she was not against supporting that but just to be hesitant to even put a band aid on it.
CM-07-04-071 Moved by Paul, seconded by Nagy; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To award a contract for design and construction engineering services for the 2007 Beck Road short-term improvement projects (Project 1 Ė Beck/Ten intersection improvements; Project 2 Ė Repair and re-pave Beck from Ten Mile to Eleven Mile) to URS Corporation for a not-to-exceed design fee of $36,060 and a construction engineering fee equal to a fixed 6.5% of construction cost (estimated to be $17,940) for Project 1 and 6.0% of construction cost (estimated to be $23,400) for Project 2 for a total of $77,400.
Member Nagy thought Council was making a wiser choice to look at funds during budget sessions. She agreed with the previous speakers that it was a band aid but it was all they could afford right now. She thought they had spent more money on neighborhood streets because it was necessary and needed.
Roll call vote on CM-07-04-071 Yeas: Margolis, Mutch, Nagy, Paul, Landry, Gatt
2. Consideration of approval of AT & T Uniform Franchise to provide Video Services to the Novi Community.
Mr. Schultz said Council had correspondence from his office regarding this. He noted that some of it was confidential; in fact, some of the packet information regarding the agreement was confidential. He said the correspondence talked about the new legislation passed by the State that dealt with cable franchising, and Council had not had to deal with this because the City was a member of SWOCC. He said Kristen Kolb, from his office, was the regular SWOCC attorney and was at the meeting to make a presentation. Mr. Schultz said Ms. Kolb had already been to one of the SWOCC communities today, and had one more to go to after this meeting.
Mayor Landry asked if anyone was present from AT&T because Council received communication that they might appear. He said they asked that a letter be read into the record if they were not present. Mayor Landry asked Clerk Cornelius to read the letter into the record.
Ms. Cornelius noted the letter had been delivered by UPS overnight delivery regarding the Video Service Local Franchise Agreement for AT&T Michigan.
"We hope your community shares our excitement at the prospect of AT&Tís offering of competitive video services to residents of the City of Novi. AT&T has received, and thanks you for your letter of April 12, 2007, finding that AT&Tís franchise agreement submitted to the City of Novi is complete.
We understand that the City of Novi has inserted in the agreement in Section VI(A)(ii) the amount of 5% of gross revenues as the annual video service provider fee. AT&T assumes that this is the amount of the fee currently paid to the City of Novi by the incumbent provider, Bright House, with the largest number of subscribers in the City of Novi, as authorized by Section 6(1) of Act 480 of 2006 (the "Act"). Obviously, AT&T has no independent means at this point in time to verify amounts paid to the City by other providers.
In addition, we understand that the City of Novi has inserted in Section VIII(A)(1) if the agreement the amount of 3% of gross revenues as an annual fee for support for the cost of public, education, and government ("PEG") access facilities and services. AT&T assumes that this is the amount currently paid to the City of Novi by the incumbent video provider, Bright House, with the largest number of cable service subscribers, under the terms of an existing franchise agreement in effect on January 1, 2007, pursuant to Section 6(8)(a) of the Act. Furthermore, we understand that the City of Novi has inserted in Section VIII(A)(2) the amount of 2% of gross revenues as the level of PEG support which the City of Novi will seek upon expiration of its existing franchise agreement with Bright House, pursuant to Section 6(8))b) of the Act.
AT&T notes that under Section 6(9) of the Act, the fee required to be paid to the City of Novi for PEG support shall be applicable to all providers. Therefore, AT&T assumes that the City of Novi will immediately notify AT&T if it applies any different fee to any other provider.
Thank you for your invitation to attend the Novi City Councilís meeting on Monday, April 16, 2007. AT&T will endeavor to have its representatives attend. AT&T would request that this letter be read into the record at that meeting, and copies provided to members of the Council.
Again, we look forward to providing competitive video services in the City of Novi and to a continued positive relationship"
Ms. Kolb said they had provided Council with correspondence in the past on this matter. She said Public Act 480, which was signed by the Governor last year and became effective on January 1st, provided a State wide mandated franchise for what we all know as cable services. She said the new term was video services, and every community in the State of Michigan would be required to sign this agreement with AT&T, and probably ultimately with their current cable providers, which in Noviís case was Bright House. Ms. Kolb said the Act dictated that the Michigan Public Service Commission create a standard act, which they had done. AT&T submitted that agreement to the City of Novi on Friday, March 23rd. She said under the Act the City had 15 business days to notify AT&T whether or not the agreement was complete meaning that it complied with the technical requirements of the Act. Then there were 30 calendar days to notify AT&T whether or not the agreement was approved. She said the 15 business day clock ran last Thursday, and she worked with Sheryl Walsh, Caren Collins, and Maryanne Cornelius, City Clerk, to get that notice to AT&T. She noted that the determination of the City upon recommendation from her office was that the agreement was, in fact complete, and that notice was sent out. Ms. Kolb said they could tell from the correspondence received from AT&T that our City Attorney recommended that certain percentages be filled in for franchise and PEG fees as when the agreement was received by the City those numbers were blank. Ms. Kolb said they filled in those numbers and notified AT&T that that was their intent. She said the matter before Council tonight, because Council needed to notify them by the end of this week as to whether they approved it, was whether Council was going to take that affirmative action on the franchise. She said certainly along with the intent of the Act, by approving this agreement Council would open the door for competition for cable or video service in the City of Novi. She said many of the residents were looking for that competition, unfortunately as of todayís date AT&T had no product to offer any residents. She said they were not sharing what date they would be available. Actually, Council was provided with a date but it was confidential and could not be revealed to the citizens. However, the door would be open and as soon as they were ready, on approval of the franchise, they would be allowed to proceed. Ms. Kolb said a draft resolution had been prepared for Councilís consideration. She said because the Act was so new and very vague, there were a lot of unanswered questions and what ifs, and the feeling among the municipal world and the cable employees and directors was that it changed every day. She said Council had the resolution and agreement to consider, and they had a couple of additional recommendations for Council to consider tonight. She said in the proposed resolution Council had to take this agreement as presented and drafted by the MPSC. She said there was no opportunity for discussion or negotiation as experienced in the past. Ms. Kolb said it took years to negotiate the Bright House franchise and this had to be considered in 30 days. She said if no action was taken, it would still be deemed approved by operation of law. She said Council had two choices, they could do nothing and it would become effective, or Council could take affirmative action and possibly some steps to reserve some rights on behalf of the City through the adoption of the proposed resolution.
Ms. Kolb said in the resolution it referenced "agreement" and there was strong feeling that that term should be modified to reference the State Mandated Agreement so it was clear it was not something the City had requested, sought, negotiated or agreed to. On the second page of the resolution, the first "Now therefore be it resolved", she suggested adding the date of Friday, April 20th so that it coincided with the deadline to respond to AT&T based on the 30 calendar days. Ms. Kolb said one final recommendation for Councilís consideration was to the actual agreement itself. On page 8 of the agreement after the signature blocks, there was a section labeled "Miscellaneous" and five sentences, A-E, and she recommended adding an F and taking the language out of the last paragraph of the resolution, which talked about reserving the rights of the City to challenge it in the future, and add it into the agreement as F.
Mayor Landry said he wanted to make a brief report since he was the representative of Council to the South West Oakland Cable Commission, SWOCC. Mayor Landry said for a long time people had e-mailed him and other Council members and asked why there was no competition, and why the City didnít open up cable to competition. Mayor Landry said his response was always the same that the City had always welcomed competition, and had welcomed AT&T. SWOCC Executive Director Caren Collins was present this evening and had always welcomed AT&T to come into all Noviís neighboring communities and offer cable. However, the deal was the very same deal given to Bright House that they had to serve the entire City and could not cherry pick and offer cable to the very populated areas of the City and not offer it to people, for example, on the north end. Mayor Landry said if they were going to offer cable they had to be fair and offer it to all members of the community and they wanted to cherry pick. They only wanted to offer cable where they would make the most money, which would be unfair because certain residents would have a choice, and other residents might have no cable at all. So, the deal had always been that Novi had an open door policy, and Council would give them the same deal as Bright House, and would negotiate with them both but they had to offer it to the whole City.
Mayor Landry said ultimately AT&T prevailed and they got the State of Michigan to pass Public Act 480. He said now Council didnít have a choice; AT&T or any cable provider could come in under this uniform agreement. He commented when Ms. Kolb said it was not negotiable she meant it was non-negotiable. He said there was nothing to negotiate because this was a State Mandated Agreement and the City had no choice. Mayor Landry said all they could do was fill in the blanks for the percentages, which had to be what the Bright House percentages were. He said AT&T and any other major cable provider would get a credit and right now Bright House paid the City 5%, which paid for the public broadcasting such as Council meetings, and PEG, public educational and governmental programs. Mayor Landry said AT&T would get a credit against that 5% for their Metro Act fees to run telephone lines through Novi rights-of-way. He said AT&T would get a credit for that but Bright House would not. He said the bottom line was that all the municipalities were in the same boat, and Novi was no different. Council had been presented with the contract and had until the end of the week to sign it, and if they didnít sign it it would go into effect anyway. Mayor Landry said his position was, as a lawyer, why would he sign something if he didnít agree with it, and he didnít want to sign it. He especially didnít want to sign it if it was going to prejudice Council at a later time. He said some municipality or group of municipalities might get together and challenge this in the court system and file a constitutional challenge. Mayor Landry said he didnít want to take action tonight that would prejudice because what if they challenged AT&T and won. He didnít want to be in a position of AT&T saying "Novi you signed our agreement, so even though those groups found it unconstitutional, youíre stuck because you signed it". Mayor Landry said just donít sign it and let it go into effect. However, what he heard Counsel telling them was it was OK to sign it because they would put a caveat in it that said something to the effect that Novi was not bound by this contract if it was overturned on a Constitutional basis.
Ms. Kolb said the language said if another community or group of communities challenged the Act but Novi didnít participate but those municipalities got a favorable response then Novi would be able to take advantage of that response. Mayor Landry said, with that language, he wouldnít have a problem signing the agreement.
Member Paul said she wanted to sign the contract with a caveat thatís her first impression. She understood Mayor Landryís rationale but she wanted the caveat put in and say it was what they were mandating.
CM-07-04-072 Moved by Paul, seconded by Nagy; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve Item #2 of the agenda, Consideration and approval of uniform Video Service local franchise agreement AT&T Michigan to provide video service in the City of Novi, with the following changes:
that on page 8 of the agreement under Miscellaneous, F be added and the language be "that the franchising entity, which is the City of Novi, shall not be found to have waived its rights to challenge any provision of the Act and/or any related provisions of the agreement on the basis that such provisions are invalid and unenforceable as violations of law concluding on the grounds that a particular action is an unconstitutional impairment of contractual rights, and further reserves any and all rights stemming from any successful challenge to such provisions undertaken by any other local franchising entity".
Also, that page 2 of the resolution at the first, "Now therefore be it resolved" reflect the date Friday, April 20, 2007, and change agreement to State Mandated Agreement.
Member Nagy said Ms. Kolb also wanted to change the word agreement to State Mandated Agreement, and Ms. Kolb said that would be in the resolution. Member Nagy said that was the third change requested. Member Paul asked if it would be one motion to cover the resolution as well, or just do the agreement first.
Mr. Schultz said he understood that the motion was to adopt the resolution with a couple of additional changes. He was sure the record would reflect the approval of this resolution with additional comments. Mayor Landry said then Council was amending both in this motion, and asked if it was OK with Mr. Schultz and he said it was. Mr. Schultz said just a little bit of a truth in advertising here. It was entirely possible that AT&T would say that this was not an approval in which case they would continue to have issues with AT&T but what they wouldnít have done was sign it without the extra provisions in the motion. Mr. Schultz said if AT&T said they liked it the way it was then there would be further discussion.
Member Mutch said he had a question regarding the actual language that covered the franchise agreement. He said it talked about the PEG channels and that presumably the municipality or SWOCC would request that certain channels be reserved. He asked if that was covered under the resolution or agreement or done separately in terms of insuring that AT&T had to provide the same public access channels that Bright House currently provided.
Ms. Kolb replied that would have to be done as a separate written request. She said the Act specifically stated that in order to get and continue receiving the PEG channels that Bright House currently offered, they would have to make a separate written request. Ms. Kolb said what they had proposed was correspondence that would accompany the resolution and the signed agreement. They would indicate in a letter that under the franchise with Bright House the City of Novi received six PEG channels and they were making a formal request for AT&T to provide the same number as well.
Member Mutch said seeing this new franchise agreement and the framework it provided for video service within the State, what would SWOCCís role be in terms of being involved in any of these agreements.
Ms. Kolb said the Act specifically defined the franchising entity as the municipality. So, the franchise agreement and any issues that arose related to that would come through the City. SWOCC right now was the Cityís public access group and they monitor the public access that went on. She said currently, under the franchise with Bright House, they also dealt with any complaints that came in related to the service, and for the time being that had not changed. Ms. Kolb said other than losing their role as the franchise negotiator and facilitator their role would not change.
Member Mutch said if people had problems with their service when it eventually came from AT&T, Bright House had SWOCC as their venue to air their complaints, with AT&T who would the complaints go to. Ms. Kolb said AT&T had made it clear that they would not deal with the local governments on complaints, and any resident that had a complaint would have to contact the Michigan Public Service Commission and deal with them directly.
Member Mutch asked if the MPSC had agreed to take on that role. Ms. Kolb said they had been given it by statute under the Act, and were in the process of developing a policy as to how those complaints would be handled. She said they were required to issue that policy by June 1, 2007. He said then AT&T complaints would go to Lansing, and Ms. Kolb said yes.
Member Mutch asked what impact would the agreement or the State law new framework have on City ordinances and permitting process for work in the public right-of-way. He said he didnít know what AT&Tís infrastructure was within Novi but if they needed to upgrade they would more than likely be working in the right-of-ways. He asked if that was considered as part of the process or was there something else that replaced that. Ms. Kolb responded the Act contained language that specifically said that the providers were still required to comply with all valid and enforceable regulations concerning rights-of-way, and the cities had not lost any of their police power to protect health, safety and welfare. She said that meant if they were in the Cityís right-of-ways, they would need to obtain a permit and pay any fees that they would otherwise be required to pay. Member Mutch asked if the amount of the City that would be covered by services fell under the confidentiality provision, and she replied that it did. He said then if a resident asked Council about it Council simply couldnít answer that. Ms. Kolb agreed, and said they were required under the Act to notify the City as to the areas of the City they intended to serve, and they have deemed that information to be proprietary and confidential. She said it was not subject to FOIA and could not be discussed at a public meeting, and until they deem otherwise, it was confidential.
Member Mutch said there were provisions in the law that dealt with provisions of service, like certain percentages, but that didnít apply on a per community basis did it. Ms. Kolb said in the case of AT&T it applied on a State wide basis. Member Mutch said so if they had to provide service to 30% of the State, it didnít necessarily mean our 30% of the State, it could be some other 30% of the State. Ms. Kolb agreed.
Roll call vote on CM-07-04-072 Yeas: Mutch, Nagy, Paul, Landry, Gatt, Margolis
3 Consideration of alternatives for bicycle path construction in the Cityís right-of-way along the west side of Meadowbrook Road between Eight Mile and Ten Mile Roads.
Ms. Antil said there was nothing new to add and Mr. Hayes would be available to answer questions, and Council would notice there were some alternatives that were not discussed the first time.
Member Gatt said this was an emotional issue as evidenced by all the residents that came out tonight and at prior meetings. He said listening intently to every one of them and to the people who had called and written, he thought it was important that the bike paths and sidewalks be completed in the City. However, they needed to be completed in an appropriate manner that would not harm the residents but give benefit to every one. In this case, he thought a compromise was in order but to not construct the path was not an option to him. Member Gatt said there were a lot of people in the City who would use the path. However, to construct an 8 ft. path was also not an option because it would harm too many citizens who front Meadowbrook Road, and many who have been residents for 30 years. Member Gatt proposed that Council accept the compromise as provided in Council packets tonight, and that was to construct a 5 ft. wide pedestrian sidewalk in lieu of the 8 ft. wide bike path that had been recommended.
CM-07-04-073 Moved by Gatt, seconded by Paul; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
That Council accept the compromise provided to them thisevening to construct a 5 ft. wide pedestrian sidewalk in lieu of the 8 ft. wide bike path that had been recommended, and to ask theForester to look at some street trees along Meadowbrook where they are putting in the sidewalk to help with absorption, and to ease residents concerns for drainage as well as to beautify the area. Also, that the 3 feet be moved closer to the road so that the residents have the benefit of the 3 feet.
Member Nagy stated she appreciated the residentís comments and the photographs regarding the sidewalk that was already there. She commented she had major concerns about the water that was already on that sidewalk and she didnít see that the City was doing anything to alleviate it. She thought it was a part of the 51 acres that was natural. She understood how the residents felt when they said they had lived there for 30 years and didnít want an 8 ft. path, and had voted sidewalks down in the past. She said she had noticed that people were walking more and she wanted to compromise as well. She didnít believe there had to be an 8 ft. path there, and as much as she liked to see things connected, her major concern was drainage. Member Nagy referred to Mr. Hayes memo to Mr. Coburn, which said in part "while enclosing the ditch may seem like a simple solution, it requires a storm sewer to convey the storm water that would otherwise be in the ditch, and curb and gutter or swales along with catch basins to transport the storm water from the road to the storm sewer. Additionally, the engineering fees would be increased for the additional design effort and preparation of a hydrologic and hydraulic analysis of Meadowbrook Road". Member Nagy thought Council needed to spend all the money available to do this properly. She said this was in the Middle Rouge, water traveled underground, and she was surprised to see how much of the new sidewalk was already under water. She didnít feel they would be fiscally responsible to allow the sidewalk to sustain water damage and in a few years have to be put in again. She asked Mr. Hayes to explain, if a sidewalk were put in, exactly what they would do with the drainage problems. Member Nagy said she also appreciated that they cleaned the ditches because in her neighborhood they did the same thing because the City didnít do it. She said a lot of those swales were knocked in and water couldnít get through in some areas
Mr. Hayes replied that whether they went with an 8 ft. wide path or a 5 ft. wide path they would account for the cross drainage into the ditches and incorporate that into the design so there would be positive drainage from the path into the roadside ditches. Member Nagy said those ditches become dangerous and she wanted to make sure that no problems would be caused for those people. Mr. Hayes said there would definitely be some grading challenges and they would be overcome by what would be seen in the final design that would be detailed out. Member Nagy asked if he was going to work with the residents, because she thought they should be kept apprised of what was going on. Also, what could be done to the existing sidewalk that the gentleman showed the pictures of. Mr. Hayes said he was not familiar with that segment. Member Nagy said it was important to address that. Mr. Hayes said if it was adjacent to the new subdivision, he could understand where there might be some areas that were wet. Member Nagy thought if they were going to do this, they needed to find a remedy for that situation as well. She commented she would support a 5 ft. sidewalk but would not support an 8 ft. bike path. Member Nagy commented that she wanted to be sure that Mr. Hayes worked with the residents, and took care of the situation further down.
Member Margolis stated she would support the motion. She said she wanted to thank the residents because she thought this was an example of what municipal governance and working with citizens really should be. Member Margolis said the residents were all very respectful, they gathered a lot of information and came to talk to Council. She said the plan might say they were supposed to have 8 ft. bike paths, but the residents presented their information in a very logical way, and she appreciated the chance to compromise. Member Margolis said she knew this wasnít what everyone wanted but hoped this would satisfy residents who wanted pathways and give others relief from what they feared.
Member Paul said she and Member Mutch were on the Sidewalk Committee and they put a priority on areas of connectivity so they could connect areas that didnít have a lot of sidewalks. She said their area was one of them as well as the priority by schools. She said that was their focus and wanted the residents to know why they considered their area important. Member Paul said they had received many letters from residents in their area, complaining that they didnít have connectivity and they were looking for all of Nine Mile, Meadowbrook and Haggerty to be done. She said this wouldnít be the only area. She said she was concerned that a 5 ft. bike path would be done. She understood their concerns and was willing to compromise but thought it would be short sighted in the long term. She said when walking or jogging it was easier for someone on a bike to pass by when it was an 8 ft. path way. Member Paul commented that it was very startling when someone was behind you on a bike and they were going faster; their desire was to have a 5 ft. path, and she was willing to compromise. However, if they could move the whole 5 ft. segment closer to Meadowbrook, by taking the difference of 3 feet off the homeowners segment, and move it closer to Meadowbrook that would be appreciated. She was concerned about the water drainage there as it was a peat bog with a wetland that was down near the bridge. She thought they would have to take special consideration with the drainage when working with the engineers. Member Paul asked if any right-of-way was needed since it was going to be a 5 ft. bike path. Mr. Hayes said they were in the process of requesting easements from four parcel owners, and there were three other unplatted parcels they were going to try to accommodate with the 5 ft. pathway within the 33 ft. statutory right-of-way. He said right now it was four easements and as many as seven if they couldnít fit it in. Member Paul said there was a large Street Tree Fund and suggested looking at putting some street trees there, which would help with absorption, beautify the area and give it a little more privacy. Member Paul asked if that was a possibility, and Mr. Hayes said given the proper guidance, he could work with the Forester to see if that could be accommodated.
Member Paul asked that they add to the motion to have the Forester look at some street trees along Meadowbrook where they were putting in the sidewalk to help with absorption, and to ease residents concerns for drainage as well as beautify the area.
Member Gatt accepted the friendly amendment.
Member Paul hoped they could look favorably on this because all of Council was looking to do the best for the entire area and City, and not just one little segment. She said connectivity was their goal for everyone there, and with the residents being willing to compromise it helped everyone.
Member Gatt said he lived in that area and walked that path with his wife and kids. He noted the drainage problem was about 150 ft. south of Malott on the west side, and it was only for about a 20 or 25 ft. piece there, and was definitely coming off the woodlands there. Member Gatt asked who was responsible for maintaining that sidewalk during the winter. He said no one plowed or shoveled it and it was a worthless piece of sidewalk all winter.
Mr. Schultz said generally the City tended to take care of that even though technically it was the requirement of the property owner. The City tended to take care of the bike paths, the bigger roads, mile roads, etc. but in terms of Meadowbrook, he was not sure what the policy was. He believed it was typically the property owner on that street.
Mayor Landry agreed with all of the previous comments, and in particular with Member Paulís statement. He said he would ask for a friendly amendment that the 3 ft. be moved closer to the road so the residents had the benefit of the three feet, should this motion pass. The maker and the seconder of the motion accepted. Mayor Landry said they could look at the trees but that was all he was willing to do at this point because of sight distances, and he really wanted to be careful about what trees were put on Meadowbrook Road. He said even though this was truly right-of-way and the City owned it, these people had considered it their front yards for a long time. So before the City went in and started plunking stuff in what people considered to be their front yards, he would just like to look at it. Mayor Landry said he was sure Council, before planting anything, would give residents notice to come in and give their opinion of the plan. He also echoed his appreciation for how this entire matter had been handled. Mayor Landry said every time he had met with a resident they had said they wanted to work with the City and these people had been wonderful. He said Mr. LaFleur had taken two Saturdays off of work to come in and talk with him. Mayor Landry said he saw the petition that went around and the residents had been wonderful in how they had dealt with the City. He said sidewalks were a thorny issue and he appreciated their willingness to compromise as he did his fellow Council members.
Member Mutch said getting the sidewalks in, whether 5 ft. or 8 ft. was the goal. He understood the residents concerns as he lived on Taft Road in a house that fronted on Taft Road and if standing on his front porch he was 60 feet from the middle of the road. He said he backed out into the traffic so he completely understood what the situation was. He noted he was probably the biggest advocate for sidewalks having grown up on the east side of town and never going down Meadowbrook Road because it wasnít safe. He said the safety of the residents in the area to go up and down Meadowbrook Road whether a 5 ft. or 8 ft. path was really his goal, and he was glad to see that come forward. Member Mutch echoed the comments of Member Paul that the change from the 8 ft. path to the 5 ft. path, while visually preferred by residents, he thought they would find that it would be a bigger problem for them. He said as Member Paul noted people on bikes could not pass people on sidewalks safely on a 5 ft. path. He said it was easy on an 8 ft. path and he lived across the street from one on Taft Road. Member Mutch said what would happen was those people would ride on the grass, they donít stop and walk their bike around the stroller, etc. they go onto the grass, and thatís when people fell off their bikes. He thought an 8 ft. path would be better but his preference was to have a path period and if a 5 ft. path would get us there, he would support it.
Member Nagy echoed the sentiments of previous Council members in how the residents had handled this, and especially appreciated the information they brought forward. She appreciated that they informed Council of the water problem on one of the sidewalks.
Roll call vote on CM-07-04-073 Yeas: Nagy, Paul, Landry, Gatt, Margolis, Mutch
Mayor Landry asked Ms. Antil if she would have the DPW or the Engineering Department follow up with the water over the sidewalk. She said she would.
4. Consideration of request from OISHI LLC to transfer ownership of 2006 Class C Licensed Business, located in escrow at 3348-3354 W. Twelve Mile, Berkley, MI 48072, Oakland County, from Bishmillah, Inc. to OISHI LLC; and transfer location (governmental unit) (MCL 436.1531(1) to 43155 Main, Suite 203, Novi, MI 48375, Oakland County.
CM-07-04-074 Moved by Nagy, seconded by Paul; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve request from OISHI LLC to transfer ownership of 2006 Class C Licensed Business, located in escrow at 3348-3354 W. Twelve Mile, Berkley, MI 48072, Oakland County, from Bishmillah, Inc. to OISHI LLC; and transfer location (governmental unit) (MCL 436.1531(1) to 43155 Main, Suite 203, Novi, MI 48375, Oakland County.
Roll call vote on CM-07-04-074 Yeas: Paul, Landry, Gatt, Margolis, Mutch, Nagy
5. Consideration of Zoning Ordinance Text Amendment 18.215, the request of the Northern Equities Group to amend Appendix A of the City of Novi Code of Ordinances, Ordinance 97-18, as amended, known as the City of Novi Zoning Ordinance, at Article 23A, Planned Office Service Technology, to permit educational facilities in limited instances. First Reading
CM-07-04-075 Moved by Nagy, seconded by Gatt; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve Zoning Ordinance Text Amendment 18.215, the request of the Northern Equities Group to amend Appendix A of the City of Novi Code of Ordinances, Ordinance 97-18, as amended, known as the City of Novi Zoning Ordinance, at Article 23A, Planned Office Service Technology, to permit educational facilities in limited instances. First Reading
Member Mutch said in terms of the uses that would be permitted, and a couple were mentioned, would these uses in terms of how they would be taxed, be considered exempt uses.
Ms. Antil said if it was a not for profit school it would be exempt from taxes. Member Mutch said a for-profit school would be taxed? Ms. Antil said her understanding was that there would be a difference between the not for profit and the for-profit. Member Mutch thought the use was compatible with the district and didnít have a problem with the types of uses. However, the concern he had was opening up the OST District to essentially exempt uses and the impact that had on the tax base. He said the goal of the OST District was to maximize the tax base especially with the number of changes that had recently been made regarding allowed uses and the standards in the district. Member Mutch said he had a concern about that but this was the First Reading so he would support the motion.
Member Paul said she had the same concerns and stated she was in favor of the First Reading but would not support any tax exemption going into OST. She said they were striving to meet their OST and offset the tax base and to have a religious education or a non tax entity in the highest tax accruing area was not feasible. She thought the faÁade and building facility would work but it was not what she wanted to put in that area.
Member Margolis asked if this would be restricted to higher education above K-12, and if talking about a private religious education, it would still have to be higher education. Mr. Schultz said that was the intention. She said the reality was that when talking about an institution of higher learning they were talking about a very small number of possible organizations that could fit into that. She said it was a concern but the reality was the impact would be small. She thought they needed to think about what the economic impact of organizations of higher learning had on a community, and the reality was that one of the things people looked at in the community of Novi now was Walsh College. She understood the concerns but didnít think it would have a huge impact and thought it could have a positive impact on economic development.
Member Nagy shared the concerns of the two previous speakers about tax exempted facilities, and wondered if it could be restricted in the Second Reading. Mr. Schultz understood the sentiment but was something he would prefer to address it in a short opinion in an off week packet that talked about the land use issue versus the tax base issue. He said it was an appropriate question and he would be happy to put something in writing for her.
Roll call vote on CM-07-04-075 Yeas: Landry, Gatt, Margolis, Mutch, Nagy, Paul
Mr. LaFleur stepped forward to thank Council for taking their concerns into consideration on the bike path issue.
Council recessed at 8:55 P.M.
Council reconvened at 9:10 P.M.
MATTERS FOR COUNCIL ACTION Ė Part II
6. Appointments of Youth to Boards and Commissions
Mayor Landry called for the tally of the Boards and Commissions appointments.
Clerk Cornelius read the results of the appointments to Boards and Commissions. All appointed candidates received a minimum of four votes.
YOUTH COUNCIL APPOINTMENTS
Michael George Sami Khan
Abhigna Kodali Hollie McDonald
Evan Muller Janani Naidu
Andrew Phillips Stephanie-Grace Raymundo
Sara Snyder Sara Wizinsky
Deepika Yuvaraj Dexter Zhuang
BEAUTIFICATION COMMISSION APPOINTMENT
LIBRARY BOARD APPOINTMENT
7. Consideration of a request from Nadlan II, LLC to accept Beck North Corporate Park Phase II streets, and adoption of Act 51 New Street Resolution accepting Nadlan Court and the remaining portions of Cartier Drive and Hudson Drive as public, adding 3,199 linear feet or 0.61 miles of roadway to the Cityís street system.
Member Paul asked what portion of Nadlan Court and Cartier and Hudson Drives were public, and what portions were already accepted. Mr. Hayes said there was a portion of Cartier Drive and Hudson Drive that were both in Phase 1 of Beck North, and had already been accepted. He referred Council to the colored map in their packets and said the phase line for the development was approximately 1,200 ft. south of Nadlan where the shaded area was. He said Phase 2 was depicted in yellow, and south of the phase line would be Phase 1. He said Hudson Drive to the south would be in Phase 1. Member Paul asked if anymore traffic would be coming up through this area. Mr. Hayes said yes, the development was about 5% built out so there would be ongoing construction traffic as each lot was developed. Member Paul said when neighborhoods were done they would wait until a percentage was completed before accepting the roads. She asked why they wouldnít do something different when it would probably be heavier vehicles going to support an industrial site. Mr. Hayes said it was the same standard for this type of development. The ordinance required 90% of the lots to be built out before streets were accepted, and if that proposed a hardship on the developer then Council had the prerogative to require a site restoration bond to cover any future damages that might occur until the 90% threshold was met. Member Paul asked what their percentage was, and Mr. Hayes replied it was roughly 5%. She stated she was not in favor of accepting the roads as public with only 5% of the development completed. She said that was a lot more construction traffic on them, and once the City accepted them as public the City had to repair them. She said when looking at Beck Road and all the other neighborhood roads that were competing for the same dollars, she would not be in favor of supporting this.
Member Margolis said that was her question as she was reading the packet. It detailed out that the City didnít accept before 90% build out and this was 5% build out, but if this posed a hardship to the developer, Council had the prerogative to consider. She said what wasnít in the information to consider was what the hardship was that the developer was asking Council to consider. Mr. Hayes said Ryan Dembs was present representing Amson Dembs Development, Inc.
Mr. Schultz stated he wanted to clarify that it was 90% or four years, whichever occurred first.
Ryan Dembs said they had been the owner of Beck North for over four years. He said Mr. Hayes didnít mention that there was a phase of Beck North that was in Wixom and came in off of Beck Road. Then Phase 1 in Novi that came in off of West Road and both streets were dedicated up to that point so they actually own the middle of the park. He said there were two dedicated roads, and their strip that ran down the middle that was not dedicated, and which they were trying to dedicate tonight. Mr. Dembs said the biggest and only hardship for them was that this was a business park where they planned on putting up buildings on a speculative basis as they had done in the City for the past 10 years. He noted that as hard as it was today to attract tenants to the parks having streets that werenít dedicated made it impossible. Mr. Dembs commented that he wasnít aware this ordinance was put in place but when they heard of it six months ago they started working with Mr. Hayes trying to figure out how to get this dedicated. He said they were not told of this ordinance through the process. He commented they placed the appropriate bonds, did the appropriate paperwork that took almost a year and a half, and it wasnít brought to their attention that this ordinance was in place. He said they were proceeding on like this would happen, they were checking with the City attorney, etc., and finally they came and said the streets would not be dedicated until the park was at 90% build out. Mr. Dembs said that would virtually kill the business park. He noted that companies like Toyota, Alcans and companies they were trying to attract to these business parks, would not even consider locating in a park that didnít have dedicated streets. He commented that they own and manage the buildings, and he could see situations where there could be a park and maybe a residential situation where by the time the builder was 90% done he was gone, and the City was stuck fixing the streets. He said that was not the case here as they owned and managed the buildings, they werenít going anywhere, had been building in Novi for 11 years, and they planned to be building here for a long time. He said they could not do business without dedicated streets. Mr. Dembs said they certify the park with the Michigan Business Park Association which sent them a questionnaire to attract a very high level tenant that was possibly considering their park, and one of the first questions asked was whether all the streets were dedicated. He said he had to be honest and say no, and he had not heard back yet from that particular business. He said that showed the importance of dedicated streets. They are locating in the City of Novi, which had a wonderful reputation, and businesses and prospects knew how the City took care of the City and the streets, and to be in the City but the streets werenít dedicated, threw them off. He said that would be the main hardship. Mr. Dembs said they had a bond in place and were willing to listen and try to come to an agreement that would make Council comfortable that they wouldnít leave with a street to fix up, and that they would stand by what they did.
Member Mutch asked how long the streets had been in place. Mr. Dembs said the streets were constructed about 2 Ĺ years ago. Since then his office and the City Engineers Office have had extensive structural testing done to the streets, which had all proven positive. The street was completely structurally sound and in very good shape. Mr. Dembs said they had hired Soil and Material Engineers, Inc. (SME) and their findings were that the roads were in very good shape. SME did core samples and everything they needed to do to get a very good engineering report as far as structure and condition of the roads, which had been done within the last 30 days.
Member Mutch asked Mr. Hayes, according to his clock, where were they in the four year time period. Mr. Hayes said 2 Ĺ to 3 years at the upper end. Member Mutch noted he read through all the reports in terms of structural issues because when City people went out and evaluated the streets for acceptance, the main issue was erosion on the surface of these concrete streets. He said that raised a red flag as to whether Council would be taking on a problem they had seen in other locations where the surface condition was indicative of problems below the surface. Member Mutch said everything he read that was provided seemed to indicate, and he said he was not an expert on concrete, but in the construction of the streets there was probably some lower grade or lower quality cement or maybe it didnít set right on the surface. However, the street itself was structurally sound based on all the information provided.
Mr. Hayes agreed that based on what he had reviewed the streets appeared to be structurally sound. He thought it was more of a workability or construction issue. Mr. Hayes thought there was a problem with the curing and that was why the top 4 millimeters was showing some early signs of wear. Member Mutch asked if in terms of what he knew, there were no structural problems similar to what was seen in some of the residential subdivisions. Mr. Hayes said he was correct, and based on the corings they had seen and the microscopic analysis that showed there was a uniform mixture from top to bottom of concrete components. He felt comfortable that they were structurally sound. Member Mutch asked if the way the streets were constructed, were they consistent with the Cityís Design and Construction Standards for industrial streets. Mr. Hayes said they were. Member Mutch said there had been some numbers mentioned and he didnít know how they compared, taking the absence of any negative comments in Mr. Hayesí letters he assumed that was not an issue with the standards. He said he was not as familiar with the acceptance process and policy for streets like this so when talking about 90% or four year policy, did it mean when the four year time limit was reached it would be an automatic acceptance of the streets assuming everyone had signed off on it.
Mr. Schultz said the way the ordinance was set up the 90% and four years came in a couple of different ways. Initially, the first requirement was that 90% or four years, and the final lift had to be done and the road had to be completed. In terms of accepting the street, the ordinance said Council would accept it at the time appropriate and could consider it at 90% or four years, whichever occurred first. Mr. Schultz said neither of those had occurred here, and the property owner was saying the roads were in, they were public on either side of them, and his hardship was that he needed tenants. Mr. Schultz said that was permitted, and one of the discretionary factors listed in the ordinance, after some debate, was they start the project before the ordinance was passed. Mr. Schultz said clearly it was a discretionary determination on Councilís part as to whether or not there was enough work done, and then the ordinance did require a final item. He said a site restoration bond had to be required in addition to the regular two year bond. So, the City Engineer had said he would like the same $80,000 site restoration bond so Council would end up with both of those.
Member Mutch said if for whatever reason the core samples were not indicative of the road and repair was needed, what would that money cover in terms of repair or restoration.
Mr. Hayes said the $80,000 being held now in a Maintenance Bond would cover approximately a half mile of discreet repairs but definitely not a reconstruct. He said because they had aesthetic type surface problems right now, he felt comfortable $80,000 could address those should they become worse in the future. If it became a structural problem then the $80,000 would just cover a fraction of what would be necessary.
Member Mutch said everyone on Council was cognizant of the reality of the economic times, and asked Mr. Dembs what the likelihood was that the park would be built out at 90% in the next year or so.
Mr. Dembs said he would love to know the answer to that question himself. He said as far as they were concerned they were building buildings and everything was on a speculative basis. He said he had a building up in the park now and had four more in for approvals they were planning on building this spring and summer. He said they kept coming in with site plan approvals and new buildings, and he was always planning on having three or four buildings going up at the same time. He said it was a big park and they had 75 acres to develop. Mr. Dembs said it would probably not be built out 90% in a year and a half, but they would be well on their way.
Member Mutch said realistically they would probably not be at 90% when the four year mark was hit, so at the point they would come back to Council to request the City to take those streets it was not likely they would be built out. His question now was do they take the streets now and get a certain amount of money through Act 51, or should Council make them wait for another year recognizing there would be wear and tear on the streets from construction traffic. Member Mutch said he was satisfied that the conditions with the street, from a scientific viewpoint, were fine and there was some surface wear that was not a structural issue based on the information provided. He commented he wanted to hear from fellow Council members whether they thought they should take this on now and take whatever money they would get from Act 51. Or, wait a year and come back and go through this routine again knowing the park would not be built out at 90% but would hit the four year mark, and decide whether to accept them at that point.
Member Nagy understood their dilemma that they wanted to attract people and wanted to have the streets dedicated. She had concerns about the surface of the concrete as the last time she saw this condition was in her own complex, and the concrete was too wet. She said Mr. Hayes said this was acceptable but this would wear in two years, and how would the situation be remedied when the street wore down. Mr. Hayes said based on the findings of the report it was unlikely that anything more than the top four millimeters, which was the depth of the pitting seen in the pictures, would wear away. He said if anything more than that wore away the $80,000 Maintenance and Guarantee Bond, which was renewable if they had to draw from it, would do a great deal of sealing if needed to do an epoxy seal to prevent any further pitting. Member Nagy asked how long the epoxy seal would last. Mr. Hayes said sometimes it would hold up for a good five years, and in other stretches he had seen it in place for 10 years or more. Member Nagy wanted them to be able to attract business, and wondered if they could update the bond, or that the Surety would begin following Councilís acceptance of the street.
Mr. Schultz said they made that notation just to make sure that Mr. Dembs and Surety were aware that when and if Council accepted the street the two years would begin then. There had been informal discussion, and they seemed to think the two years had already started but it started from the day of acceptance. Mr. Schultz said it was just because they wanted to make sure that was confirmed. Member Nagy said she was not comfortable with the 90% non-occupancy but at the same time she understood Mr. Dembs dilemma of wanting to attract business into their complex. She said if Council accepted this tonight the bond would start at the moment of acceptance.
Mr. Schultz said if Council decided they wanted to accept the streets and grant the variance, essentially their suggestion was one caveat in the motion, which was they had to confirm that Surety was aware that it would start as of the date of the acceptance. He said the other thing Council would have to do would be to take that second recommendation from Mr. Hayes for a Site Restoration Bond for a separate $80,000 and have that as an additional condition.
Member Nagy said the Site Restoration Bond would be $80,191.25. She asked if this would be two motions or one. Mr. Schultz said it would be one motion and one bond would be the two year maintenance bond that Council always saw, and the other, because a variance would be granted, was a required Site Restoration Bond in the same $80,000 as Mr. Hayes recommended. He said Council would end up with what they usually got plus a little extra because the ordinance said, if they took the street early to take some security with it.
CM-07-04-076 Moved by Nagy, seconded by Paul; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve request from Nadlan II, LLC to accept Beck North Corporate Park Phase II streets, and adoption of Act 51 New Street Resolution accepting Nadlan Court and the remaining portions of Cartier Drive and Hudson Drive as public, adding 3,199 linear feet or 0.61 miles of roadway to the Cityís street system. Also, to grant a variance because of the commencement of the development before the effective date of this provision, that Surety start April 16, 2007, and that a Site Restoration Bond be required in the amount of $80,191.25.
Mayor Landry said he would assume that her motion proposed that a variance be granted because the project commenced before the effective date that by ordinance in and of itself was an unusual circumstance. Mr. Schultz agreed it should be defined. Member Nagy accepted the friendly amendment.
Member Paul asked if the 2% was the Site Restoration Bond overriding the amount of the true bond itself. Mr. Schultz said he wasnít sure the 2% literally found its way into the ordinance. He said what the ordinance said was that if it created this variance process, and if the variance was granted "Council shall", it was an obligation, set in Councilís discretion at an amount recommended by the City Engineer whatever the amount was. He said Mr. Hayes was saying he would take roughly the same 25% value of the improvement and say that was a reasonable Site Restoration Bond. He said it was well above a 2% beyond a Maintenance and Guarantee Bond and Mr. Hayes would have to explain how he got the 25% value.
Mr. Hayes said it was based on the quantities that were taken off or estimated based on the proposed improvement, in this case, 3,300 ft. of concrete streets, 9 inches of concrete over 12 inches of stone. He said that estimate was done at site plan to assess fees for construction inspection. Then, per the ordinance, at the end of the project they apply the 25% figure to determine what would be held in the Maintenance and Guarantee Bond.
Member Paul said if they had to repave 3,199 linear feet or .61 miles of concrete roads with that base and that depth of concrete approximately what would the cost be. Mr. Hayes said it would be pretty close to the number they had given here. He said if you take four times the $80,000, which was roughly $320,000 or about $100 a foot. He said that was a real competitive price but it could be done. Member Paul said Mr. Hayes was comfortable with the number and if the whole road had to be replaced the majority of it would be with the bond plus the $80,000 Mr. Hayes asked for. Mr. Hayes said in the unlikelihood that they had to replace the whole road, they would have to call that bond and apply it toward the reconstruction of the streets.
Member Paul asked what type of bond it was, and Mr. Hayes said it was referred to as a Site Restoration Bond. She said she understood that but was it a bank statement, etc. Mr. Hayes thought it would be a letter of credit. Mr. Schultz said for a bond it might be cash up to a certain point, letter of credit as Mr. Hayes said, and then at some point he thought the possibility of doing a bond as opposed to cash or letter of credit would kick in. He was not sure when that would happen.
Member Paul said it was Nadlan II, LLC, and her experience with limited liability corporations had not been great from development, because the developer was gone sometimes and there was no money to go after. She asked what happened if they were not in existence anymore and this would close; how would the City get the money. Mr. Schultz said cash or letter of credit would be something that could be drawn on right away regardless of the status of the person posting it. He said the point of the letter of credit was they had to prove it was on hand, and even if it were a performance bond, which he didnít think it would be, Surety would then be on the hook. So if the principal or the landowner went out of business or became insolvent it would essentially be the insurance company they would look to for the payment.
Member Paul said she was very hesitant to support this but with the amount of money they had set aside and the hardship, she wanted the business to come in also. However, she was really worried about the streets because she had been in a neighborhood where the LLC dissolved and the City was stuck with $2 million worth of road repairs. She said with the reassurance of Mr. Hayes and the City Attorney she would support it.
Mayor Landry stated he would support the motion. He said the request was for a variance and a variance was provided for in statute specifically for unusual circumstances. Those unusual circumstances were specifically defined in the ordinance as "commencement of the development before the effective date of this provision." Mayor Landry said they had been informed that this development did commence before the date of the particular provision; so by definition they had met the unusual circumstances requirement. He said he was satisfied with Mr. Hayesí advice that the additional monies the City would have with the Site Restoration Bond would protect the City, and for that reason he would support the motion.
Roll call vote on CM-07-04-076 Yeas: Gatt, Margolis, Mutch, Nagy, Paul, Landry
8. Consideration of a request from Northern Equities Group, applicant for Haggerty Corridor Corporate Park Ė Phase II, for a variance from Section 11-68(a)(1) of the Design and Construction Standards requiring water main extensions in office/industrial developments to provide a minimum flow of 4,000 gallons per minute.
Ms. Antil advised Council that the staff supported this request.
Member Mutch said there appeared to be two issues with this. He thought one issue was the pressure and the water main extension, and he didnít know whether the second issue was driving this or was separate, but the second issue was there was no secondary connection in this system. He said looking at the map provided, a couple things came out. He asked if there was any exploration of connecting to the water main south of Thirteen Mile more in the Haggerty Road area, extending that or connecting into Farmington Hills to get the secondary access. Member Mutch commented that he realized there were some segments missing there. Mr. Hayes said they had looked at the former but not the latter. He said they looked at every possible connection point to see if they could meet the pressure and flow requirements and it was just not there. Member Mutch said even if they extended south down Haggerty to the existing system nothingís going to happen. Mr. Hayes said he was correct. Member Mutch asked what issues connecting with Farmington Hills would raise, and if there was any potential there. Mr. Hayes said, from his experience, there had not been a lot of proponents on the Farmington Hills side that would be in favor of that type of shared service. He said they could explore it in more detail to see if it would be possible, but they really had not broached the issue. Member Mutch said he would like to look at that only in the sense that one of the issues was this was an industrial park. He noted Council had dealt with dead ends, single connection water mains and pressure issues in residential development several times in the last couple of months. He said he knew the reports from Engineering and the Fire Marshal were in support but they also noted they werenít getting the water pressure required by ordinance. He said his understanding was that they didnít even have the water pressure at Thirteen Mile much less going into the park. Mr. Hayes agreed, and said at Thirteen Mile they had the 20 PSI and a little over 3,200 gallons per minute flow. Member Mutch said that was his big concern with the future of this area as there was development. He said obviously Ryder would be a major tenant but as the remainder of the corporate park built out and until that future connection was done, he would have a public safety concern about not having adequate water pressure in that area. Member Mutch said he would support this but would like them to look at whether Farmington Hills might be an alternative that would get the water pressure into that area until the connections within the City limits could be completed. He said the other question he had was regarding the future connection going north, which would go through property owned by Northern Equities and some other property owners. There was some indication that this water main connection was going to be completed by the City but he thought he might have misunderstood that and that it might be just the metering connection at the booster station. He wanted to know who would be paying for what and who would be doing what.
Mr. Hayes said it was listed as Project #75 in their proposed CIP for the upcoming budget. He said it was listed now as a City project because there were several components the City would have to pay for such as the metering station, over sizing the main, and pressure reducing valve. He said it was his understanding that there would be City contributions towards those improvements but it could very well be a developer led project similar to what was being done to the Cabot Drive extension, and what was done previously for the Section 12 water main project. Member Mutch wanted to make sure they looked at an equitable distribution of the cost there because as those properties developed, if this was anywhere else, they would have to put in water mains. He said obviously there was going to be some over sizing to accommodate our system needs, but he wouldnít want to see the City getting stuck for the entire bill for this area because they directly benefit. He said he knew they had moved away from trying to do pay back agreements with the changes to the ordinance but he wanted to insure that if there was an opportunity to do some cost sharing, he would like to see that.
CM-07-04-077 Moved by Margolis, seconded by Gatt; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY;
To approve request from Northern Equities Group, applicant forHaggerty Corridor Corporate Park Ė Phase II, for a variance from Section 11-68(a)(1) of the Design and Construction Standards requiring water main extensions in office/industrial developments to provide a minimum flow of 4,000 gallons per minute finding that
"1) literal application of the substantive requirement would result in exceptional, practical difficulty to the applicant,
2) the alternative proposed by the applicant shall be adequate for the intended use and shall not substantially deviate from the performance that would be obtained by strict enforcement of the standards, and
3) the granting of the variance will not be detrimental to the public health, safety and welfare, not injurious to adjoining or neighboring property."
Mayor Landry asked for reasons for granting this variance.
Member Margolis stated the reasons were "1) literal application of the substantive requirement would result in exceptional, practical difficulty to the applicant, 2) the alternative proposed by the applicant shall be adequate for the intended use and shall not substantially deviate from the performance that would be obtained by strict enforcement of the standards, and 3) the granting of the variance will not be detrimental to the public health, safety and welfare, not injurious to adjoining or neighboring property."
Member Gatt the seconder of the motion accepted the friendly amendment.
Roll call vote on CM-07-04-077 Yeas: Margolis, Mutch, Nagy, Paul, Landry, Gatt
9. Approval to award a construction contract for Special Assessment District 170 Phase III Sanitary Sewer project (Singh Development) to Star Contracting, Inc. for $342,790.71.
CM-07-04-078 Moved by Margolis, seconded by Gatt; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To award a construction contract for Special Assessment District 170 Phase III Sanitary Sewer project (Singh Development) to Star Contracting, Inc. for $342,790.71.
Member Paul said Tuscany Reserve was going with a gravity system and asked if they ended up putting in a pump station. Mr. Hayes said no. She said there were three that were in this assessment district, Maybury Park Estates, Tuscany Reserve and Singh; she asked if that was correct. Mr. Hayes said she was correct, and that they did install a shallower gravity sewer to minimize the amount of dewatering that would otherwise be necessary. She asked if there was any other pumping station. Mr. Hayes said just this one that was proposed on the Singh parcel. Member Paul said it was on the news that one of these people in the special assessment district was having financial difficulty, and asked if all these owners would be able to fulfill their portion of the special assessment district. Mr. Hayes said when they execute the contract they would be obligated to. She said even if someone was in bankruptcy?
Mr. Schultz responded the property owner he thought she was referring to was actually a part of an LLC, which as far as the City knew had a member that was financially solvent. So, the SAD had been amended to contemplate the shallower sewer as Mr. Hayes had said, and the lift station so they were just following through on what they needed to. He said this was really for the Singh portion so they would fund the rest of it. He said Mayburyís financial obligation was already in place. She said her concern was the three people on the special assessment district. She said this was just one component, and she wanted to make sure that if there were
only two people in the special assessment district the City could still recover their money. Mr. Schultz said similar to any other SAD the City had the lien on the property, and there were any number of protections in place. He said they were assuming that hearing nothing to the contrary everybody was solvent and able to pay their bills.
Roll call vote on CM-07-04-078 Yeas: Mutch, Nagy, Paul, Landry, Gatt, Margolis
10. Approval to award a construction engineering services contract for Special Assessment District 170 Phase III Sanitary Sewer project (Singh Development) to Spalding DeDecker for a not-to-exceed fee of $25,886.86.
CM-07-04-079 Moved by Paul, seconded by Gatt; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To award a construction engineering services contract for Special Assessment District 170 Phase III Sanitary Sewer project (Singh Development) to Spalding DeDecker for a not-to-exceed fee of $25,886.86.
Roll call vote on CM-07-04-079 Yeas: Nagy, Paul, Landry, Gatt, Margolis, Mutch
CONSENT AGENDA REMOVALS FOR COUNCIL ACTION
B. Approval of resolution in support of a fundraising event for the Greater Novi Chamber of Commerce Ė Member Paul
Member Paul said this was just a clarification issue as she didnít understand why one Greater Novi Chamber of Commerce would have this come forward to Council. She said Clerk Cornelius explained it was just a resolution like other foundations had done.
CM-07-04-080 Moved by Paul, seconded by Gatt; CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY:
To approve resolution in support of a fundraising event for the
Greater Novi Chamber of Commerce.
MAYOR AND COUNCIL ISSUES
1. EITC Ė Member Paul
Member Paul said EITC was Earned Income Tax Credit and was something done by the Nations cities and organizations, and what they were trying to do was to help people and families have affordable financial services so they could pay their mortgages and not have so many people going into foreclosure. She said on July 11th -13th in San Francisco they were having a national conference to basically educate municipalities about how to inform the public to avoid foreclosure, and different ways to get earned income tax credit. She said she just wanted to bring the awareness of this because Oakland County and Novi had the largest foreclosure statistics they had ever had. She said if there was anything Council could do to help our financial growth and sustainability to families, it was something they should consider. Member Paul commented she wanted to share this with Council and Administration to see if there was someone who could go to the conference or at least get the information as she would like to see that for the families of this City.
AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION - None
There being no further business to come before Council, the meeting was adjourned at 9:57 P.M.
David Landry, Mayor Maryanne Cornelius, City Clerk
_______________________________ Date approved: May 1, 2007
Transcribed by: Charlene Mc Lean