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City Council


City Council Meeting Minutes

June 17, 2013

 

1.            Roll Call

Mayor Roe called to order the Roseville City Council regular meeting at approximately 6:00 pm, and welcomed everyone.  Voting and Seating Order: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  City Attorney Mark Gaughan was also present.

         

2.         Approve Agenda

McGehee moved, Etten seconded, approval of the agenda as presented.

 

                                                Roll Call

               Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

               Nays: None.

 

3.         Public Comment

Mayor Roe called for public comment by members of the audience on any non-agenda items.  No one appeared to speak at this time.

 

4.         Council Communications, Reports and Announcements

Mayor Roe announced several upcoming Parks & Recreation Renewal Program community meetings for various parks; with additional information available on the City’s website or by calling City Hall.

 

Mayor Roe announced a benefit concert on Sunday, June 23, 2013 from 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm at North Heights Lutheran Church in Arden Hills featuring the music of Rockie Lynne.  Mayor Roe noted that the concert, sponsored by Tribute to the Troops and Beyond the Yellow Ribbon, was to benefit the Tribute to the Troops Fallen Heroes’ Children’s Education Fund; with additional information available at nhlc.org or tributetothetroops.org.

 

Mayor Roe announced openings on the City’s Human Rights Commission, the Police Civil Service Commission, and Planning Commission; with an application deadline of 4:30 pm on July 10, 2013.  Mayor Roe encouraged residents to apply; with additional information available at the City’s website or by calling City Hall at 702-7001.

 

5.         Recognitions, Donations, Communications

           

a.            Proclaim July Parks & Recreation Month

Mayor Roe read a proclamation designating July as Parks and Recreation Month in Roseville, MN; recognizing the benefits derived from parks and recreation resources.

 

          Etten moved, Willmus seconded, proclaiming July of 2013 as Parks & Recreation Month in the City of Roseville.

 

                                                Roll Call

                        Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

                        Nays: None.

 

6.            Approve Minutes

 

a.            Approve Minutes of June 10, 2013 Meeting

Comments and corrections to draft minutes had been submitted by the City Council prior to tonight’s meeting and those revisions were incorporated into the draft presented in the Council packet.

McGehee moved, Etten seconded, approval of the minutes of the June 10, 2013, meeting as presented.

 

                                                Roll Call

                        Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

                        Nays: None.

 

7.    Approve Consent Agenda

At the request of Mayor Roe, Interim City Manager Patrick Trudgeon briefly reviewed those items being considered under the Consent Agenda.

 

a.            Approve Payments

McGehee moved, Laliberte seconded, approval of the following claims and payments as presented.    

 

Check Series #

Amount

ACH Payment

$297,211.02

70167-70290

310.933.40

Total

$608,144.42

 

                                                Roll Call

                        Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

                        Nays: None.

 

b.             Approve Business & Other Licenses & Permits

          McGehee moved, Laliberte seconded, approval of business license applications for the period of one (1) year, for applicants as detailed in the Request for Council Action (RCA) dated June 17, 2013; and a Temporary On-Sale Liquor License for the Church of Corpus Christi, 2131 Fairview Avenue N in Roseville, on July 6, 2013 for an event being held on church property.

 

                                                Roll Call

                        Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

                        Nays: None.

 

c.            Approve General Purchases and Sale of Surplus Items In Excess of $5,000

          McGehee moved, Laliberte seconded, approval of the submitted list of general purchases and contracts for services presented as follows:

 

Department

Vendor

Description

Amount

Budget / CIP

Parks & Rec

Upper Cut Tree Service

Ash Tree Removal (EAB Program)

$30,000.00

Budget

 

Roll Call

                        Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

                        Nays: None.

 

d.            Adopt a Resolution Changing the Comprehensive Land Use Map Designation; Adopt an Ordinance Amending Zoning Map Classification; and by Motion Approve a Parcel Combination, all for 600 County Road B and 2130 Dale Street and regarding a Request by Mueller-Bies Funeral Home

Councilmembers McGehee and Etten commended the applicant for engaging the neighbors throughout the process on various issues.

 

McGehee moved, Laliberte seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 11073 (Attachment E) entitled, “A Resolution Approving an Amendment to the Comprehensive Plan Map Designation from Low Density Residential (LDR) to Neighborhood Business (NB) for Property Located at 600 County Road B (PF13-007).”

 

                                                Roll Call (Super Majority Vote)

                        Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

                        Nays: None.

 

          McGehee moved, Laliberte seconded, enactment of Ordinance No. 1442 (Attachment F) entitled, “An Ordinance Amending Title 10 of Roseville City Code, Changing the Zoning Map Designation of Certain Real Property at 600 County Road B from Low Density Residential-1 (LDR-1) to Neighborhood Business (NB) District.”

 

                                                Roll Call

                        Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

                        Nays: None.

 

          McGehee moved, Laliberte seconded, approval of the RECOMBINATION MINOR SUBDIVISION of County Road B; based on the comments and findings of Sections 4-6 and the recommendation of Section 7 of the RCA dated June 17, 2013.

                                                Roll Call

                        Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

                        Nays: None.

 

e.            Adopt a Resolution Approving Cost Participation Agreement Between Ramsey County and the City of Roseville for Larpenteur Avenue Construction Work

          McGehee moved, Laliberte seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 11074 (Attachment A) entitled, “Resolution Approving Agreement No. PW2013-13: Ramsey County Cooperative Agreement (Attachment B) with the City of Roseville;” for Larpenteur Avenue construction work; and authorizing the Mayor and Interim City Manager to execute the document.

 

Roll Call

                        Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

                        Nays: None.

 

f.             Approve July 4th Display Contract

          McGehee moved, Laliberte seconded, approval of a Display Contract between Pyrotechnic Display, Inc. and the City of Roseville to perform the 2013 Fireworks display; and authorizing the Mayor and Interim City Manager to execute the document.

                             Roll Call

                        Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

                        Nays: None.

 

g.            Adopt a Resolution Requesting MnDOT to Conduct a Speed Study on Cleveland Avenue between County Road B-2 and Fairview Avenue

Interim City Manager Trudgeon clarified that the study included the frontage road west of Fairview Avenue on the north side of Highway 36 in addition to the north-south section of Cleveland Avenue north of Highway 36.

 

Mayor Roe noted that, when a petition was received for a speed study, the results were based on a certain percentile speed found on the roadway; and cautioned that there was no guarantee on the recommended speed from that study.

 

Councilmember McGehee questioned what recourse the City Council had in these types of situation, since there was currently a conflict on speed limits, but the City was unable to arbitrarily set speed limits itself.

 

Interim City Manager Trudgeon advised that the City could not enforce the 30 mph speed limit since there was already an official action by the MN Commissioner of Transportation setting the speed limit at 40 mph for one section, with MnDOT having the final say.  Mr. Trudgeon advised that this would get the process started for review and resolution.

 

Councilmember Willmus questioned if the City had any liability for reimbursing traffic citations issued in the past.

 

City Attorney Mark Gaughan advised that if that were the case, there would be little impact to the City given that the major dollar amount collected from those citations was allotted to the State of MN.

 

          McGehee moved, Laliberte seconded, adoption of Resolution No. 11075 (Attachment A) entitled, “Resolution Requesting MnDOT to Conduct a Speed Study on Cleveland Avenue from County Road B-2 to Fairview Avenue.”

 

                                                Roll Call

                        Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

                        Nays: None.

 

8.            Consider Items Removed from Consent

 

9.            General Ordinances for Adoption

 

a.            Zoning Code Text Amendment – Drive-through and Refuse Locations

City Planner Thomas Paschke briefly summarized the request detailed in the Request for Council Action (RCA) dated June 17, 2013.

 

Discussion included staff rationale for including Section 12.f (Chapter 1009.02.D.12, Conditional Uses, Specific Standards and Criteria) allowing for screening flexibility of plantings or opaque walls or fences based on particular cases where one may be preferable to another (e.g. Walgreen’s site on Snelling Avenue and County Road C) with the Community Development Department staff having the discretionary approval for which application to use on a case by case basis.

 

Etten moved, McGehee seconded, enactment of Ordinance No. 1443 (Attachment A) entitled, “An Ordinance Amending Selected Text of Title 10, Zoning Ordinance of the Roseville City Code;” amending Section 1005.02.I: Design Standards, and Section 1009.02.D.12: Conditional Uses, Specific Standards and Criteria – Drive-through Facilities.

 

                                                Roll Call

                        Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

                        Nays: None.

 

b.            Zoning Code Text Amendment – Garage Doors and Loading Docks

City Planner Thomas Paschke briefly summarized the request detailed in the Request for Council Action (RCA) dated June 17, 2013.

 

Discussion included specific Zoning Districts affected by this amendment, specifically Commercial Mixed Use Business and Regional Business Districts that currently allow residential uses; staff rationale in its definition of “overhead door” and leaving “vehicle” in that definition, but still facilitating other equipment (e.g. fork lift, etc.).

 

McGehee moved, Etten seconded, enactment of Ordinance No. 1444 (Attachment A) entitled, “An Ordinance Amending Selected Text of Title 10, Zoning Ordinance of the Roseville City Code;” amending Section 1001.02.I Definitions, adding the definition of Overhead Door, and amending the text of the “Garage Doors and Loading Docks” section of the Commercial and Mixed Use Districts (1005) and Employment Districts (1006 of the Zoning Ordinance, and specific to the types of doors permissible on the front of a building.

 

                                                Roll Call

                        Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

                        Nays: None.

Recess

Mayor Roe recessed the meeting at approximately 6:34 pm. and reconvened at approximately 6:37 pm.

 

13.         Business Items (Action Items)

 

a.            Approve Preliminary Park Plans

Parks & Recreation Director Lonnie Brokke, Parks Superintendent Jeff Evenson and LHB Consultant, Michael Schroeder were available for the presentation, with Mr. Evenson providing an overview and Mr. Schroeder outlining the specifics for each park.

 

Evergreen Park

Councilmember McGehee expressed her personal concern that the focus was going toward the ballfields, but suggested that if that was the final plan, the Baseball Associations be solicited for financial contribution.  Councilmember McGehee advised that her concern was whether or not the specific park improvements being requested by the neighborhood were not being addressed, since the majority of the park was taken up by the ballfields.  Since this park is somewhat in the southwest portion of Roseville, Councilmember McGehee suggested other park amenities be addressed as well.  Councilmember McGehee further requested that the current pathway be incorporated as an entrance into the park, as well as to the adjacent school, to create a safe pathway for pedestrians and bicyclers to get to the park.  Councilmember McGehee opined that this was an important trail, and a formal entrance to the “park” portion of the park should be included in the mix.

 

Mr. Schroeder responded that the entry was intended to be addressed as part of the improvements.

 

Mr. Brokke responded that, while the Baseball Association already contributed to maintenance costs, they would be approached, along with all user groups, to solicit their financial participation in the park improvements as well.

 

Councilmember Etten recognized the upkeep already performed by the Baseball Association and those responsibilities borne by the City, opining that everyone was contributing.  Councilmember Etten clarified that, ideally, a natural component was clearly included in the planning process for each park, and that feedback from the neighborhood had been sought for this park as well, with the intent to carve out some natural space and be responsive to the neighborhood.  Councilmember Etten noted that the existing sidewalk was 90% completed to the corner entrance, and making a small loop to make a connection should not be problematic; noting that almost all park discussions to-date had included requests for such loops.

 

Mr. Brokke reminded everyone that the intent was to continue joint efforts for all users, the community, neighborhoods and all stakeholders in the City’s park system.

 

Councilmember McGehee advised that, while the partnership with the City of Falcon Heights is great for use of their park system in the southwest portion of  Roseville, she would continue to push for a park or amenities in Roseville as well.

 

Oasis Park

Councilmember Willmus confirmed the location of the trail connection to Langton Drive to the pump station.

 

Councilmember McGehee cautioned care of pond buffers for the lake based on algae concerns from garden fertilizers, as well as to allow for appropriate shade and open space.

 

Councilmember McGehee further questioned the concern with access to restroom facilities, a concern of many residents, in their frequent locked status.

 

Mr. Brokke noted that this had been a concern heard with all parks that bathrooms be kept open.  Mr. Brokke advised that a card system was being investigated, found popular for such applications.

 

While supporting the woods play area as a great concept, Councilmember Laliberte asked that special care be taken to ensure the safety of children in non-visible areas.

 

Mayor Roe commented that this pavilion reminded him of the Como Park Pavilion uses for live performances.

 

At the request of Councilmember Laliberte, Mr. Brokke advised that this park already had community gardens, with 120 plots, and reviewed how the reservation system worked, and would continue to do so upon expansion of the number of plots.

 

Rosebrook Park

Mr. Schroeder reviewed the current condition of the Press Gym building, noting that it was a very substantial building and would expend the majority of funds intended for this park just for its demolition.  Therefore, Mr. Schroeder reviewed some options to significantly enhance the exterior aesthetics of the building, and re-use the interior spaces.  Mr. Schroeder provided several conceptual uses that were not provided in other parks in the system, with a suggestion to focus on arts, and to provide additional storage for the Parks & Recreation Department.  Mr. Schroeder advised that these were only suggested uses at this point, without significant investigation, since the first step would be to achieve an agreement with the property owner for acquisition of the parcel.

 

Given the thick, concrete walls of the building, Councilmember McGehee suggested it could also be used as a safe weather shelter, provide off-site storage, and suggested continued use of the racquetball courts would also provide a use not currently available in the system. 

 

Mayor Roe suggested that this “bunker” could also provide a wall for public art or a mural in addition to plantings to diminish the impact of the blank walls.

 

Councilmember Etten asked for several considerations if the parcels were purchased.  That the proposal to remove the existing small parking lot in the corner of the property not be pursued, as it seemed to acerbate community concerns versus alleviating them.  Since funds were not available for expanding parking on the edge of the parcel along County Road C, Councilmember Etten suggested that the number of available spaces not be significantly decreased, and if the property was acquired that the proposal, as conceptually sketched, be reconsidered.  Also, Councilmember Etten asked, if there is a splash pad, it be rotated toward the pavilion versus adjacent to the parking lot.

 

Sandcastle Park

Mr. Schroeder advised that this was another park that would probably be seeing a significant evolution.

 

Councilmember Willmus spoke in support of the proposed relocation of the parking area to Old Highway 8 to reduce neighborhood traffic, opining that it made great sense.  Related to the proposed dog park, Councilmember Willmus questioned if its proposed location was the best place, so close to residents.

 

Mr. Schroeder advised that there had been interest from the neighborhood, with many currently using the tennis courts to throw balls around with their dogs; however, he noted that it was still an unknown if it made sense to create this type of a space.  Mr. Schroeder noted that there were not funds to include all of the conceptual amenities, and also noted that this request was probably from a small segment of the neighborhood as well.

 

Mayor Roe questioned the location of dog areas next to homes that may create a potential nuisance from noise; and suggested it might lend itself to a different location since it wasn’t funded yet anyway.

 

Councilmember Etten recognized that there were not funds allotted for all concepts at this time; however, he suggested that the parking lot relocation be a high priority; and questioned if the tennis courts, intended to be relocated in the future, were proposed for resurfacing or moving them at this time to allow phasing improvements in the park without expending considerable funds for resurfacing them when they would later be removed for relocation.

 

Mr. Brokke clarified that the intent was to use a portion of the allotted $275,000 for this park to move the tennis courts at this time to allow for future improvements. 

 

Councilmember Etten supported that intent, opining that he clearly couldn’t support a $50,000 to $75,000 expense to resurface the courts and later relocate them.

 

Mr. Brokke advised that the intent was definitely for phasing it; noting that the existing parking lot was relatively new as well.

 

Specific to Mayor Roe’s concerns, Councilmember McGehee stated that, based on her experience, dog parks were not too noisy.

 

Related to the proposed pickle ball area, Councilmember McGehee questioned their location in this park.  Councilmember McGehee also suggested dollars be spend on park amenities other than the building, by reducing the size of the proposed building, and apply that money to the parking lot.  Councilmember McGehee opined that it seemed to be more important to get the traffic out of the neighborhood in the immediate future.

 

Mr. Schroeder advised that, in reviewing various layouts, an area for pickle ball was considered by the basketball court; and that the request for pickle ball amenities had been heard for a number of parks, as it was becoming a popular activity.  Mr. Schroeder advised that, while trying to accommodate the majority of neighborhood requests, building size was also a consideration.  However, Mr. Schroeder noted that residents reminded them frequently that there was no other meeting place in this neighborhood, and they felt much removed from the rest of Roseville; and the intent was to make an attempt to at least connect them within their neighborhood.

 

In an attempt to fund the parking lot relocation, Councilmember McGehee questioned if the Oasis Park pavilion would be sufficient for a meeting area for this neighborhood as well.

 

Mr. Schroeder advised that this would be reviewed; and in the long run, planning would be done to narrow spaces as much as possible to accommodate the budget and programming needs.

 

Mayor Roe spoke in support of cost savings wherever possible.

 

Councilmember Laliberte noted that the previous presentation for other parks had included half walls and other landscaping amenities that provided seating options; and questions if that was included with these parks beyond the decking shown in the preliminary plans.

 

Mr. Schroeder advised that some things would be more like benches, with the patio areas needing furnishing, equipment and fixtures as part of each building in each park.

 

Southwest Roseville

Mr. Schroeder provided several conceptual areas that would be appropriate to insert a park in this area of Roseville.  Mr. Schroeder reminded everyone that they were very preliminary suggestions, since it would require property acquisition; and noted that this was one neighborhood less interested in a typical park versus preferring passive parks (e.g. HANC West) for walking and gathering spaces, or pocket parks with linkages to other areas.

 

At the request of Councilmember Willmus, Mr. Schroeder advised that the neighborhood was provided an opportunity to look at concept locations in southwest Roseville, and were told that a follow-up meeting(s) would be held with them once a particular site was more defined.  Mr. Schroeder opined that it was a fair reflection of their input that they were amenable to any and all of the concept locations.

 

As a resident of SW Roseville, Councilmember McGehee stated that, if it ended up with several pocket parks, it was vitally important to provide a safe trail to access them, since there were a lot of busy streets in this area of the community (e.g. Snelling Avenue, County Road B, and Cleveland Avenue as some examples), especially during peak hours.  In some of those areas, Councilmember McGehee opined that a way to access back trails would be important to provide safe routes away from that traffic congestion.  Councilmember McGehee noted that a lot of neighbors in SW Roseville use the City of Falcon Heights Park adjacent to Roseville, which provided a much less active park in comparison to most of Roseville’s parks, with a lot of natural area around it; and suggested that this be considered as a useful model.

 

Mr. Schroeder noted that residents had been very clear that they perceived trails as being part of any park concept, basically that trails were parks.

 

Mayor Roe noted that, throughout the Master Plan process, it was continually brought forward that the SW area of Roseville not be overlooked.

 

Councilmember Willmus noted that this had been an overwhelming and recurring theme heard during his campaigning; not necessarily for a big park, but to enhance smaller areas; and expressed his appreciation in offering some options that could achieve that preference.

 

In conclusion, Mr. Brokke advised that all preliminary plans were available for the public online; and that continued feedback was welcome.  Mr. Brokke reiterated that follow-up meetings for Rosebrook Park and SW Roseville would be forthcoming in the future, following additional fine-tuning of concepts.

 

Etten moved, Willmus seconded, approval of the Preliminary Plans for Evergreen, Oasis and Sandcastle Parks, as presented and as detailed in the RCA dated June 17, 2013; moving toward final design, plans and specifications for subsequent approval.

Roll Call

                        Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

                        Nays: None.

Recess

Mayor Roe recessed the meeting at approximately 7:37 pm and reconvened at approximately 7:38 pm.

 

10.         Presentations

 

a.            Joint Meeting with Public Works, Environment and Transportation Commission (PWETC)

PWETC Members present included Vice Chair Dwayne Stenlund and members Jim DeBenedet and Joan Felice.

 

Member DeBenedet reviewed current activities and accomplishments since last meeting with the City Council, as detailed in the RCA dated June 17, 2013.

 

Vice Chair Stenlund noted the important component of two advisory commissions working collaboratively, as noted in the Parks & Recreation NRATS work on the Pathway Master Plan.

 

Vice Chair Stenlund reviewed the proposed PWETC work plan for the coming year, as noted in the RCA, expressing his continued amazement of the work accomplished by the PWEC, and the things that came before them during a given year from the community-at-large as well as the City Council.

 

At the request of Mayor Roe, Vice Chair Stenlund defined “MS4” as the Municipal Separate Storm and Sewer System,” a required permit process to separate stormwater drainage from sanitary sewer drainage.

 

Vice Chair Stenlund reviewed the three (3) questions or concerns in the RCA to provide additional direction or clarification for the PWETC.

 

Pavement Condition Index (PCI)

For the benefit of the public, discussion included an explanation of the current computer software program used to establish the condition index at the lowest cost for the best reasonable length of time possible.

 

Member DeBenedet led the discussion regarding whether there was City Council support for the PWETC to review whether or not there may be significant funds saved if the current formula was reduced to reduce the condition index and/or lengthen the timeframe for maintenance or reconstruction of the City’s roads. 

 

Mayor Roe spoke in support of continuing with a PCI in some form, but recognized the reduced gas tax money coming to the City for this purpose.  Mayor Roe note that it was fortunate that most of the City’s streets had now been reconstructed, creating more of an emphasis on maintenance versus a reconstruction mode.  Mayor Roe stated that a good question was what the best condition index was to use; and whether or not the same index should apply to streets and pathways/parking lots as well.  Mayor Roe supported the PWETC reviewing the PCI and providing their recommendations to the City Council.

 

Councilmember Laliberte spoke in support of the PCI; and questioned if winters similar to that experienced in 2012/13 throw the index off at all.

 

Member DeBenedet responded that Public Works Director Schwartz would be the best person to answer that question; however, he did note, with Mr.
Schwartz acquiesce from the audience, that the City’s Engineering staff annually physically surveyed at least 20% of the City’s streets, allowing for rescoring of the streets at that time.  Member DeBenedet noted that this allowed for a realistic review, and was not just dependent on when the road was last constructed and computer assumptions on projected deterioration, but included that field inspection for more accuracy.

 

Mayor Roe reiterated his support of considering what average was best indicated.

 

Metro Transit/Rapid Transit Process/Central Corridor Re-routing of Bus Routes

Vice Chair Stenlund reviewed discussions by the PWETC with Metro Transit and their attempts to create a less auto-centric and more community-centric transportation system; with the PWETC’s desire to ensure all modes of travel were evaluated and/or re-evaluated.

 

Councilmember Laliberte shared her perspective in her attendance at a recent planning meeting for rapid bus transit down Snelling Avenue, with additional community discussions, including when it reached Roseville, probably in conjunction with the City of Falcon Heights, since they shared some bus stops.

 

Responding to Mayor Roe’s comment that the route currently stopped at Rosedale, Councilmember Laliberte advised that she had pushed the discussion to question why the route didn’t proceed up to Northwestern and Bethel Universities.  Councilmember Laliberte advised that rationale of Metro Transit was that there had not been sufficient ridership in the past to support extending that route; however, they reluctantly agreed that they would review it again and if so indicated, could make changes  based on future ridership.  Councilmember Laliberte noted that Metro Transit seemed quite set in the route ending at Rosedale at this time; however, she noted that their focus was based on the need to renegotiate their transit station lease with Rosedale.  Councilmember Laliberte advised that Metro Transit had received significant input from the communities along that route relative to the design of stations, curbing, stops, etc.

 

Mayor Roe opined that the City of Roseville, as a community, needed to continue advocating other transit modes for the Rice Street corridor, along with other adjacent communities.  Mayor Roe noted that it was typical that transit opportunities in Roseville focused on Rosedale; however, he noted that there were a growing number of people passing through Roseville to access both downtown St. Paul and Minneapolis that created significant congestion on Roseville streets.  Mayor Roe stated that this needed to be considered to address the quality of life in Roseville for its residents.

 

Councilmember McGehee opined that, southbound Rice Street seemed to have a lot of activity toward University Avenue to connect with the light rail system; and suggested Snelling Avenue and Rice Streets would be realistic north/south rapid transit bus routes.

 

Councilmember Laliberte responded that it may be part of Metro Transit’s long-term plans.

 

Mayor Roe concurred with that point; as well as supporting continued advocacy for the NE Diagonal.

 

Member DeBenedet noted that there had been a lot of discussion in the past of the emphasis and Metro Transit funding in the northwest and southwest portion of the metropolitan area, but that this side of the Mississippi River seemed to be in never-never land.  Member DeBenedet opined that it was important to make sure they didn’t forget that area was here and needed to be served as well.

 

Mayor Roe reported on his involvement in a loosely-organized group calling themselves the East Metro Transit Alliance, made up of Ramsey County, Washing County, and Dakota County Commissioners, staff and elected officials and/or staff of communities in those counties, seeking to create more advocacies for transit in their area of the metropolitan community.  Mayor Roe advised that the group was not seeking to be competitive, but hoping to facilitate pre-planning and cooperation among communities along those corridors.  Mayor Roe advised that he represented Roseville on that informally; and would keep the PWETC and City Council apprised of those discussions, through Public Works Director Schwartz.

 

Vice Chair Stenlund expressed his hope that the connection of the City of Roseville to Como Park remained part of that history.

 

Councilmember Willmus asked that the PWETC assist the City Council in proactively exploring funding and planning in general to facilitate bicycle and pedestrian traffic flow.

 

Discussion ensued on ways to provide community access to bus rapid transit from  east/west routes; use of rail tracks along County Road C and potential development as Ramsey County plans improvements on County Road C west of I-35W in the next few years through potentially narrowing vehicle lanes to accommodate a continued and safe pathway safely beyond the narrow portion that is currently deemed dangerous; the need for pedestrian crossings at Highway 36; and providing public refuges for pedestrians at busy intersections.

 

Member Stenlund advised that a future field trip is planned by the PWETC to look at the City’s busiest intersections.

 

Councilmember Willmus suggested a field trip by the PWEC and City council to several recycling facilities, based on the significant number of renovations in the last few years, and to see some of the different opportunities available.

 

Councilmember Laliberte advised that the Ramsey County League of Local Governments (RCLLG) was planning a field trip later in 2013 to a water treatment plant, and when the dates became available, she would share them with the City Council and PWEC.

 

Organized Waste Collection

In noting that the PWETC had previously recommended that the City pursue organized waste collection through a formal resolution to the City Council, Vice Chair Stenlund noted that the PWETC had not yet received a response from the City Council; and therefore, questioned if the City Council wanted the PWETC to continue pursuing that previous direction.

 

Councilmember McGehee stated that she continued to hear from her neighborhood about it; and recognized the recent legislative changes to the rules, with 60-days for negotiating with haulers.  Councilmember McGehee opined that it would be a saving to the community in many ways; while recognizing that there were passionate feelings from both sides.  While not having the same emotional connection with her garbage hauler as some residents, Councilmember McGehee advised that her main concern was the potential of putting small businesses out of business.  In her consideration of the different ways to organize collection, Councilmember McGehee stated that she would prefer a model allowing for current licensed haulers in Roseville to have an opportunity to retain a similar number of customers so they would not be forced out of business, and could keep their business interests in the community.

 

Councilmember McGehee addressed recycling as part of organized collection; questioning if mixing glass and paper, in a single sort system, meant that the paper could no longer be used for recycling as she had heard.  Councilmember McGehee further stated that she would support a small cart versus a bin for recycling, and if it was determined to pursue single sort recycling, she wanted to have assurances that the items she was preparing for recycling actually were recycled and didn’t end up in a landfill.  Councilmember McGehee suggested that the City put some conditions on a recycling vendor to ensure they prove where the recycling was being taken.

 

Mayor Roe suggested that the focus remain on organized collection; noting that through a community using an organized collection concept, it was the only available means for the City to specify where collected materials went; and could be included as one of the selection criteria based on community values.

 

Member Felice opined that there was a greater recovery of materials with dual sort recycling; and further opined that the question remained whether or not more people would participate in a single sort system, since the City of Roseville’s participation rates were already very high.

 

Mayor Roe noted that, while the overall amount collected is higher, would all of it be recyclable, or is some contaminated.

 

Member DeBenedet opined that, if Roseville residents called it recycling because it was in a different container than refuse, but it was still not recycled into another product, it wasn’t recycling, and the community was simply feeling good with no effect.  Member DeBenedet advised that the last direction provided by the PWETC to staff in developing the draft RFP was to include single and dual sort; with a mandate that each bidder state and demonstrate to the City where its recycling went and what it was recycling for the end market.  Member DeBenedet noted that the City’s goal was to increase recycling collections, but also to ensure those materials were actually being recycled.  As an example, Member DeBenedet noted that the City of Minneapolis, when going to single sort recycling, their numbers shot up; however, he noted that their numbers were significantly lower than those of Roseville’s as well, with current Roseville numbers indicating 80% participation or more.  Member DeBenedet opined that fine-tuning was important, but allowing a wider range of bidders was also important.

 

Regarding recycling and community values, Councilmember Willmus questioned to what extent outreach had been conducted to measure those values.  Councilmember Willmus stated that he heard repeatedly from residents their preference to move to single stream and sue carts; and referenced a flyer from Eureka Recycling supporting that community support.

 

Vice Chair Stenlund advised that the PWETC had researched community values through performing surveys; and that the City’s goal of maximizing community recycling could be re-evaluated if it was determined that the single stream program didn’t accomplish that; and upon renewal or rebidding the contract, it could return to a dual sort system.  Vice Chair Stenlund opined that the important thing was to attempt innovations and try to find the best way to accomplish the goals.

 

Mayor Roe, whether in considering recycling or refuse, opined that if more was being recycled than ending up as refuse, the community would find that supportable.  Mayor Roe opined that the question is what is realistic; and the only way to know that was through reporting mandates in the recycling contract.

 

Vice Chair Stenlund noted that another consideration for carts versus bins is the workers compensation costs for vendors in their employees lifting bins versus a single sort system with a cart that was lifted through robotic means, with the future probably trying to eliminate some of the human components and costs.

 

Councilmember Willmus asked if the PWETC had addressed why other communities are switching to single sort recycling.

 

Member DeBenedet advised that the PWETC had discussed researching that; however, there was no contact with other communities; while indications were that it was to increase participation rates; but not allowing for any analysis of how it related to recycling rates.

 

Mayor Roe advised that the City had been provided some data.

 

Councilmember McGehee questioned how to evaluate how much of the current 80% of materials collected was actually recycled and if and how that could change with single sort.  Councilmember McGehee questioned if forcing revenue sharing was the only way to know what happened to the materials.  Councilmember McGehee questioned if any communities were doing dual sort with carts; and reiterated her concerns, if the decision was to move to single sort, that the materials were actually recycled, and didn’t simply become glorified garbage.

 

Member DeBenedet advised that the PWETC had been told by staff that some vendors considered the final market for materials as proprietary information.  Member DeBenedet advised that therefore, the RFP had been drafted that this was a requirement of the City of Roseville, and if they were not willing to provide it, they would not be considered as a vendor.  Member DeBenedet opined that the PWETC thought it was a right of the City to be informed of that information.  In response to Councilmember Willmus questioning if the information was actually proprietary, Member DeBenedet opined that the proof would surface in the bid if the RFP demands the information.

 

Mayor Roe refocused the discussion to organized collection; and providing a response to the PWETC.

 

Councilmember Willmus advised that he was still at the same point he was almost one year ago; opining that it largely depended on how such a program was administered; and he wasn’t sure he was quite there to know how that would happen, and remained still up in the air.  In response to Councilmember McGehee’s suggestion to provide segments of the community for each vendor, Councilmember Willmus opined that such a program would lose one of the key aspects to switch to organized collection: economies of scale.  Without having one vendor for the entire community, Councilmember Willmus opined that it was difficult to put a tangible figure on the wear and tear on streets, which he intuitively thought was part of the equation.

 

Member DeBenedet advised that, if the City Council provided a response to the PWEC’s recommendations outlined in their resolution last year, indicating that they were willing to pursue organized waste collection, the PWEC would then respond to any and all specific issues identified by the City Council.  Member DeBenedet opined that this would be the best way to proceed, after receiving the City Council’s feedback, otherwise the PEWTC could really do nothing else until the City Council took that step and responded to the PWETC recommendation. 

 

Member DeBenedet opined that if the City dealt with only one contractor, that vendor would still send out many trucks and divide the City into routes; whether divided by neighborhoods or however, and the PWETC could put a proposal together and determine a reasonable way to accomplish it.  Member DeBenedet cautioned the City Council that the PWETC may not recommend the least expensive vendor, depending on their qualifications and the information in their proposal.  However, Member DeBenedet further opined that it was not the role of government to protect every small business in the state, using as a reference the little mom and pop grocery and hardware stores that had not survived; suggesting that it was just the way things were in the business community.

 

Councilmember Laliberte noted that while she had not been on the City Council when this was initiated, she had heard citizen opinions in her campaigning.  From her personal perspective, Councilmember Laliberte opined that this was not a high priority; however, she would provide a list of things she’d want to know from the PWETC before making a decision.  Councilmember Laliberte advised that her goal would not be to protect business as much as to protect the choice of homeowners.  In hearing both sides of the issue during her campaigning, Councilmember Laliberte noted that some were in favor or organized hauling, mostly based on the perceived wear and tear to streets, but she had also heard from more homeowners who preferred the current status quo, and liked the option of changing vendors if they weren’t receiving good services from their current vendor.  If organized collection is proposed, Councilmember Laliberte noted that this then eliminated that choice for homeowners.  Councilmember Laliberte opined that she was not convinced that the information on wear and tear on roads was conclusive enough for her, given the other large vehicle traffic through town, including the City’s own snow plows and equipment.  In the interim, Councilmember Laliberte challenged individual Councilmembers to talk to their neighbors to determine if they could coordinate vendors themselves to reduce traffic on their streets.

 

Councilmember Etten stated that he was in agreement with the majority of things he’d heard tonight.  Councilmember Etten opined that it made sense to divide the City as indicated by Member DeBenedet; however, he thought the concept that a garbage can size should be mandated seemed unfounded, while the ability to pick any size container and still provide standards of service with City oversight through a contract was feasible to ensure there was no reduction in service.  Regarding the problem of residents with lack of notice for increases in collection fees from current vendors, Councilmember Etten opined came back to whether or not it was a public utility similar to that consideration for recycling services, which he thought was comparable.  Councilmember Etten opined that the concern for not running out some of the City’s current haulers would not be accomplished by handing out sections of the community to certain vendors, and would indeed lose the economy of costs being sought.

 

Member Felice noted that the City had the ability to write the contract allowing residents to change the size of their container; and accommodate other situations, such as when people moved out and left considerable material for the next person to take care of.  Member Felice opined that this would take care of some of those concerns.

 

Mayor Roe, recognizing the adopted legislation included a first step to see if haulers could come up with a plan on their own, suggested that was a great idea and provided an interesting approach if the City didn’t end up dictating to haulers, while still requiring that they met a level of acceptability for the City.  Mayor Roe advised that, based on his concerns about choice of service, choice of carts, etc.; this process held more appeal for him than the previous approach that didn’t appeal to him at all based on a much different process and less creativity for haulers.  Mayor Roe advised the revised legislation had swayed him a little more toward organized collection; however, he would want to retain the ability for residents to have some choice, and where the garbage ended up.  Mayor Roe opined that he was not swayed by arguments related to safety or wear and tear on streets, based on the current truck traffic in Roseville; with the onus on individuals to do a better job of driving safely and watching out for traffic and pedestrians.

 

Councilmember McGehee opined that it would be helpful for the City Council to give the PWETC better direction for a plan if their research included other communities, such as White Bear Lake, Maplewood, and No. St. Paul who had taken on this issue over a year ago.  Councilmember McGehee agreed with Member Felice on the ability to draft contract language with the City taking on the cost role as a good place to start, along with community values components.  Councilmember McGehee addressed her other concerns related to health from diesel trucks, noise issues, safety issues, and garbage haulers having a specified areas.  Councilmember McGehee suggested that the PWEC talk to haulers and come up with ideas to administer an organized collection program and still provide safeguards for residents at no extra charge.  Councilmember McGehee expressed her interest in hearing a report on the proposal from garbage haulers as well as their suggestions.

 

Councilmember Willmus advised that he owned properties in communities with organized collection, and opined that it was nice.  However, Councilmember Willmus questioned if it was the best fit for Roseville.  Councilmember Willmus noted that the term “community values” was thrown around a lot; and suggested if that was going to be continued, those values needed to be accurate, and opined that the only way to do that was to ask the community what they wanted.  Councilmember Willmus noted that community values had been sought for the park improvement process that helped him make his initial decisions, and suggested that was a good place to start.

 

Mayor Roe, in responding to the PWETC, suggested that the first step was to hold community meetings, using the Parks & Recreation meetings as a model; concurring that it was an excellent idea to provide good insight.  Mayor Roe advised that the City Council would formally receive the PWETC resolution at an upcoming meeting; and provide direction to the PWETC on their recommendations; at which time it could be seen how the process moves forward.

Member Felice expressed her personal appreciation of the members serving on the PWETC, opining that there were some people with tremendous skills and background which helped the community become sustainable with their forward-thinking.  Member Felice exhorted the City Council to make it possible for those members to continue serving in their capacity on the PWETC as long as they were willing to do so.

 

Mayor Roe referenced the City ordinance regarding terms and reapplication to serve.

 

Vice Chair Stenlund suggested that, if the City Council was promoting recycling, it needed to specify use of those  products itself, whether they cost more or not.

 

On a personal note, Vice Chair Stenlund expressed his pride in serving on the PWETC; and thanked fellow members for their various perspectives and expertise, bringing a richness to the body.  Vice Chair Stenlund also personally thanked City staff for their support of the PWEC.

 

Mayor Roe, on behalf of the City Council and community, thanked the PWETC as well.

Recess

Mayor Roe recessed the meeting at approximately 8:35 p.m. and reconvened at approximately 8:43 p.m.

 

11. Public Hearings

 

12. Budget Items

 

13.         Business Items (Action Items)

 

b.            Issue Recycling Contract Request for Proposals (RFP)

A bench handout was provided, attached hereto and made a part hereof, entitled, “Attachment A – Proposal Content Checklist,” as an attachment to the draft RFP.

 

Public Works Director Duane Schwartz briefly provided a background of this issue and past City Council direction, as detailed in the RCA dated June 17, 2013 and attachments.  Mr. Schwartz advised if the City Council did not approve the draft RFP presented tonight, the process itself needed to continue moving forward to meet RFP timeline, vendor selection, cart delivery and expiration of the current contract at the end of 2013.  Mr. Schwartz suggested several information points to initiate tonight’s discussion.  Mr. Schwarz noted that Recycling Coordinator Tim Pratt was also available to address any information as needed, given his substantial work on the process and RFP to-date.

 

Three (3) Year versus Five (5) Year Contract Term

Councilmember Willmus spoke in support of leaving the contract open to see how responses were submitted.

 

Councilmember McGehee spoke in support of all bidders provided both a three year and a five year bid to avoid confusion between the vendors and terms bid.

 

While agreeing with Councilmember McGehee’s preference, Councilmember Willmus opined that with the Best Value Procurement process, it would be beneficial for the base RFP to include a three and five year term option; with the value added component also included as a consideration.

 

Mayor Roe suggested considering any value added components to the Best Value.

 

Councilmembers Laliberte and Etten concurred with having a three and five year bid from all vendors to allow better comparison.

 

Mayor Roe indicated the council direction to staff was, since there appeared to be no divergent opinion, to include at a minimum the three and five year terms and allow for other terms for consideration.

 

Cart Purchases/Ownership

Councilmember McGehee opined that this seemed a sticky point from her perspective, if a contract allowed a vendor to leave the carts versus reverting back to the vendor, especially if carts are broken and the City ended up owning them.  Councilmember McGehee questioned if and how many other communities had tried this approach.

 

Mr. Schwartz opined that he thought most communities purchased carts and owned them long-term, or the vendor owned them.  Mr. Schwartz advised that the intent was to extend the community’s investment in the carts over the first 3-5 years; and if the City purchases them as an upfront investment, that the vendor provide roll-out plans, maintenance and other ways to get the vendor involved in their maintenance through a number of options.  Mr. Schwartz advised that he was not sure if the City required that the vender return the carts over after the five year period, if the community would realize any benefit.

 

Mr. Pratt advised that he was unaware of any communities having had that requirement; noting that carts were constructed much better than in the past and averaged a ten-year lifecycle, with some manufactures actually offering a ten year guarantee on their carts.

 

Councilmember McGehee opined that if a vendor required a cart that worked with its equipment, and was required to maintain it, and at the end of the contract was required to give it to the City, but still had based its bid on that built-in cost for the cart, how could that be considered a transparent process.  Councilmember McGehee stated that she much preferred to not have City ownership of the cart and let each vendor come in with their new carts, and if not the next vendor, to pick them up.

 

Mr. Pratt clarified that in some cities that happened, but currently there was a cost savings seen for a city to own the cart, and if another vendor came in they would factor in the cost of the cart.  As an example, Mr. Pratt reviewed the history of the City of Brooklyn Park when they moved to single sort in 2002/2003, with the City buying carts, and after five years, uncertain of how this would play out.  When the City went out for bids the second time, they thought vendors would drop their bids to reflect that they didn’t’ have to purchase and provide carts; however, it was found that all bids included the cost of purchasing carts, with vendors under the impression that they didn’t need to provide those cost savings to the City, but needed their bid to come in at a certain rate.  Mr. Pratt advised that similar examples of prices actually increasing were available from other communities.  Mr. Pratt advised that it was staff’s belief that if the City owns the carts, they will see a cost-savings long-term for Roseville residents for second and subsequent contracts.

 

At the request of Councilmember McGehee, staff estimated the upfront cost for cart purchase at $45 to $60 each to be $500,000 to $700,000.

 

Mayor Roe noted that the proposal provided that the cost get built in and amortized into the contract.

 

As to how the City could fund the purchase, Mr. Pratt, in consultation with Finance Director Chris Miller, suggested a small internal loan amortized over five years in addition to using available recycling funds.

 

At the request of Councilmember Etten, Mr. Schwartz advised that it was the intent to make it part of the contract, that whoever owns the carts, the vendor would be responsible for their maintenance and storage, and to roll-out carts, since the City had neither the staff nor storage space to do so.  Mr. Schwartz confirmed that it would be the vendor’s responsibility to replace and pick up damaged carts.

 

Councilmember Willmus opined that he would like to see the draft RFP come back with cost differentials included; with Mr. Pratt responding that this was the intent of the current language, suggesting that it may need more clarification if that was not obvious.

 

At the request of Councilmember Laliberte, Mr. Pratt clarified that that no vendors would need to factor in cart purchase at the end of the first contract period, whether three or five years, even if it is a different vendor, as the City would specify the cart’s design.

 

Mayor Roe expressed concern that the City get in a position or risk with cart ownership in ending up with obsolete carts as technologies continue to change.

 

Mr. Pratt advised that the cart designs were pretty standard.

 

Mayor Roe indicated the council direction to staff was that the RFP further clarify that the bid included pricing both with and without purchase of the carts by the City so vendors could not pick and choose.

 

Single Sort, Dual Sort, or to Allow Either

When campaigning, Councilmember Laliberte stated that she continually heard residents seeking single sort, assuring that they would recycle more; and also hating any non-compliance notes in their bins, creating a source for ill will.

 

Mayor Roe noted that it may not be possible to bid the RFP both ways, opining that some vendors may not offer single sort; and it was dependent on which approach provided the best cost for the City.

 

At the request of Councilmember Willmus, Mr. Pratt advised that there were some legacy contracts out there, but typically most vendors were no longer bidding dual sort but switching to single sort.

 

Councilmember Willmus opined that he had a problem even continuing dual sort, since it seemed like a bait and switch with the public, since this caused the City to revert to where it was five years ago, when survey information clearly indicated that the community wanted single sort; along with the PWEC recommendation in 2005 unanimously supporting single sort. Councilmember Willmus stated that he was interested in looking at single sort.

 

Councilmember McGehee opined that she was perfectly happy with that, since the City had no intention of offering both options, and since the important thing was to get evaluation feedback on the quality of materials being received in single sort was now possible, she wanted that at least on an annual basis.

 

Mayor Roe noted that there were current industry standards to address that.

 

Mr. Pratt provided an example of MERF materials and the percentage per vendor of total materials received, materials rejected, residual rate, and recycling rate.  Mr. Pratt noted that, in the City of Roseville’s pilot program, people were sometimes attempting to put things, such as window frames, in the carts, which were not recyclable.

 

In recognizing that the tons collected and amount of recyclable materials, Mayor Roe noted that residual items would have gone into a landfill anyway; and while the percentage is one thing, the total was also important.

 

Mr. Schwartz advised that, part of the evaluation process may include a visit to the MERF facility by the evaluation team to get a better idea of how they’re handling things.

 

At the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Pratt advised that the percentage of materials not recyclable was typically mandated to be sent to a specific landfill.

 

Mayor Roe opined that understanding that part of the process was important.

 

Based on community interest and support, Councilmember Etten opined that the RFP should go out with only the single sort option.

 

With no divergence of opinion, Mayor Roe indicated the council direction to staff was to only request proposals for single sort for the RFP.

 

Councilmembers Laliberte and Etten expressed their interest in the RFP coming back to the City Council for one more review at a future meeting with more detail and revised based on tonight’s discussion and direction.

 

Additional RFP Items/Discussion Points

Councilmember Willmus questioned Sections 4.17 and 4.29, 4.34 (pages 9 and 11) and how they tied to Section 7.01 (page 29) specific to the type of plastic materials being recycled and contamination concerns (e.g. plastic bottle pumps; high melt point of certain ceramic items, and coated paper packages).

 

In Section 7.01, Councilmember Laliberte noted that facilities were specified for all materials to be recycled.

 

Mr. Pratt clarified that Section 4.34 (page 11), excluded plastic designed “6” unless Styrofoam.

 

Regarding Section 4.46 for zero waste events, Councilmember Willmus questioned if this should be included as a standard in the RFP or just as a value added.

 

Mr. Schwartz clarified that it was only included in the definitions, and didn’t have any impact.

 

In Section 5.04 (page 17), Councilmember Willmus questioned the language in that section specific to dual sort that not needed removal.

 

In Section 5.07 (page 19) regarding residual items at the MERF and tagging, Councilmember Willmus questioned if different vendors had different ways of handling those items and whether it was necessary for the City to designate it similar to how Eureka Recycling handles it, or leave it open for vendors to inform the City how they handle it.

 

Mr. Schwartz advised that there were different ways for vendors to track them, many electronically for preprogrammed issues.  Mr. Schwartz offered to further review that section to make it more generic, while still requiring them to report contamination issues.

 

Mr. Pratt responded that all vendors have identification tags.

 

Councilmember Etten advocated for making that section more generic; and questioned if the tracking was done curbside or at the end location.

 

Mr. Pratt responded that there were several typical ways, including cameras on the trucks as the carts were dumped to record content; as well as providing a location of the pick up through a GPS system, with some tagging done curbside for obvious contaminants.

 

If moving to single stream, Councilmember Laliberte questioned if tagging went away, even with onboard cameras.

 

Mr. Pratt responded in the negative, noting that the City still wanted to have a provision in place to notify people of contaminants in the education process.

 

Consensus was to make language in that section more generic.

 

In Section 8.04 (page 32), Councilmember Willmus suggested that revenue sharing should be a value added, questioning if it should even be in the RFP, as other vendors may have different programs.

 

Mr. Pratt clarified that Section 8.05 (starting on page 34) addressed a percentage of revenue sharing as an option.  Mr. Pratt further clarified that if that option was included in a bid, the City was specifying the terms for that revenue sharing, in knowing the value of those materials, since there was the possibility that someone could come up with using specific markets and pricing.  Mr. Pratt advised that it was vital that the City set the bar for those market prices, allowing vendors coming in to know what the true value is.

 

Councilmember Willmus questioned why that could not be accomplished through the value added side.

 

Mr. Schwartz advised that the vendor could potentially do so if there was less specificity, but probably could be highlighted more in the general specifications.

 

Councilmember McGehee expressed concern, whether revenue sharing was done or not, that the RFP be comparable; avoiding one coming in with an offset of revenue sharing and another without that offset; and questioned if all vendors offered revenue sharing.

Mr. Pratt responded that revenue sharing was quite standard now.

 

Councilmember McGehee opined that everyone should then submit their bid accordingly.

 

At the request of Councilmember Willmus, Mr. Schwartz clarified that the proposals should be comparable as long as the vendor provided revenue sharing by percentage. 

 

At the request of Councilmember Willmus, Mr. Pratt reviewed how various vendors tagged or identified their revenue sharing programs, some on a flat cost to offset and some getting a percentage as currently done in Roseville.  Mr. Pratt advised that the last time the contract went out to bid the City used a consultant from Ramsey County to evaluate the revenue sharing component, as they calculated it on the market average for the last twelve months for each commodity.  Mr. Pratt advised that Ramsey County had offered the assistance of their consultant again to perform those calculations.

 

At the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Pratt confirmed that this service was at no cost to the City.

 

Mr. Schwartz noted that revenue sharing had some risks, especially with a contract with a lower rate and lower revenue share; and advised that Finance Director Miller had provided some analysis on this, but it was hard to predict.

 

Councilmember Willmus recognized that, as commodities, they were hard to predict.

 

At the request of Mr. Schwartz, Mayor Roe noted his preference for the actual cost, as long as it was very well-defined during the evaluation process.

 

Councilmember Laliberte questioned if vendors provided incentive programs for compliance, such as points, coupons, discounts, or something that the residents could personally receive.

 

Mr. Pratt advised that those programs cost more, and at this time, there were only a few offering them.

 

Councilmember Laliberte advised that her only concern was that they were not precluded.

 

Regarding the mandate that RFP’s have to be submitted on recycled CD’s or paper (page 46), Councilmember Willmus expressed his inclination to not include that as a mandate.

 

Mr. Pratt advised that some members of the PWETC may disagree; with Councilmember Willmus responding that it was his perspective to remove that mandate.  Mr. Pratt advised that it had been removed last time.

 

Councilmember Laliberte noted that it was not mandated in other RFP’s and suggested it not should be specified for this one alone.

 

Councilmember Etten agreed; and questioned if anyone actually took the time to determine if the RFP was submitted on a reformatted CD or not.

 

Mayor Roe indicated that the consensus was to remove that mandate from the RFP.

 

Regarding evaluation of criteria and weighting (page 47), Councilmember Willmus suggested that the pass/fail side needed more articulation; with Mr. Schwartz advising that the bench handout provided the value added provided that evaluation.  Councilmember Willmus expressed appreciation for that clarification.

 

In conclusion, Councilmember Willmus noted, that since there appeared to be a consensus for single stream, he questioned where the cart versus bin discussion came in; and questioned if it should be left open.

 

Councilmember McGehee advised that she had heard no one wanting a bin, but all seemed to prefer a cart.

 

Councilmembers Etten and Willmus concurred.

 

Direction provided by consensus was to only consider carts, not bins.

 

Councilmember McGehee questioned fins assessed (pages 34-36) and whether they were reasonable or not; opining that they seemed unreasonable to her unless there were examples to share; and questioned where staff obtained those figures.

 

City Attorney Gaughan responded that a point to keep in mind was that liquidated damages in this or any contract were put in place because parties recognized that a particular breach or failure was difficult to assign a value.  Therefore, Mr. Gaughan advised that it was typical for everyone going in to accept the assigned value; with all parties recognizing it’s impossible to arrive at an actual figure.  Using that comment as a preface, Mr. Gaughan advised that what was appropriate for one community may not serve as a benchmark for other communities.

 

At the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Pratt confirmed that there had only been one occasion in the last ten (10) years where these damages needed to be assessed.

 

At the request of Councilmember Laliberte, Mr. Gaughan confirmed that they were only in place, by mutual agreement upfront, so a value didn’t need to be determined at a later time

 

At the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Pratt reviewed how and when assessments were conducted for properties missed multiple times by a hauler; and recourses available and typically used with the vendors in seeking resolution.

 

In Section 5.21 regarding seasonal park use and those facilities listed in the RFP (page 23), Councilmember Etten questioned why two of the City’s heaviest used spaces (Central Park Lexington and Victoria West), were not included in the list; and how those facilities included in the list were arrived at.

 

Mr. Pratt advised that Parks & Recreation staff were consulted, and this was the list they provided for the RFP.  However, he offered to consult with them again.  Mr. Pratt clarified that HANC was not as heavy of a user as the Wildlife Center.

 

Councilmember Etten asked that staff bring the list to the attention of the Parks & Recreation Department again and determine if there should be other facilities added to the list to be included in the RFP.

 

As part of that discussion, Mr. Schwartz noted that, if a facility was not on the list, those recyclables were brought back to the City campus, and were still recycled with other materials at this site.

 

Regarding materials processing and marketing (page 28), Councilmember Etten questioned the rationale in mandating that materials go to markets in the Upper Midwest, opining that this created problems when the industry may have facilities in several areas of the nation, and requiring shipping to process or manufacture those materials.  As an example, Councilmember Etten referenced the recycled material used for his deck.  Councilmember Etten suggested that the RFP not specify that the commodity be used in the five-state region.

 

Mr. Pratt advised that the PWETC considered added value to have materials recycled locally; noting that all of the materials recycled could be processed within the area, with most of those facilities complaining that they couldn’t get enough raw materials.

 

Mr. Schwartz suggested adding the word “preferable” to the RFP language.

 

Councilmember Laliberte questioned the rationale for including Item “O” (page 36) dictating smoking behavior.

 

While Councilmember Willmus suggested that this was based on smoking behavior of vendors at ballfields, Mr. Pratt advised that it was actually the result of a vendor picking up recycling in a multi-family facility’s garage, and smoking in the halls of this non-smoking facility.  Mr. Pratt clarified that it was a community value specifying that preference.

 

In Section 5.02 (page 13), Mayor Roe suggested review of language related to vehicle standards, repeating in the next several paragraphs, and those that were dictated by state and/or federal rules rather than the City specifying those requirements.

 

Mr. Pratt advised that those redundancies were probably due to cutting and pasting, and advised that he would review them and clean them up.

 

In number 7 (page 14), Mayor Roe suggested that the specific tools for cleaning up spills did not need to be dictated, simply “appropriate tools.”

 

In Sections 5.16 and 5.17 (pages 21 and 22) referencing scavenging and ownership, Mayor Roe suggesting removing duplicate language.

 

In Section 6.07 (page 27), Mayor Roe suggested revised language that “… initiatives may include [but are not limited to]…”

 

Proposed Evaluation Team

Mr. Schwartz provided the proposed five (5) member evaluation team consisting of Mr. Schwartz, Finance Director Miller, Mr. Pratt, one PWETC member; and a staff member of the Ramsey County Environmental Health Department.

 

The team was approved by consensus.


Willmus moved, McGehee seconded, directing staff to return with this item for the July 1, 2013 special meeting agenda.

 

Roll Call

                  Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

                  Nays: None.

 

 

c.            Classification and Compensation Study Policy Recommendations and Implementation

Human Resources Manager Eldona Bacon reviewed the current policy and staff-recommended changes for City Council consideration, as detailed in the RCA dated June 167, 2013.  Ms. Bacon noted that, whether the existing 97% plus merit pay compensation plan stayed in place or the proposed new compensation plan was instituted, there would be a need to allocate over $320,000 in additional funds.

 

 

Interim City Manager Trudgeon noted that these were some substantial numbers in a difficult budget year; and suggested that, if the City Council was interested in pursuing, they consider implementation first.  Mr. Trudgeon noted that staff was offering only one suggestion in the RCA, and opined that it was important for the City Council to determine which percentage and a policy to which it wanted to aspire; and then determine options for moving forward.  However, Mr. Trudgeon reiterated that the first focus should be where to land on a policy and then how to get there.

 

Mayor Roe reiterated the available policy options including those recommended by staff, and also setting the policy to be the current status quo, or setting another level besides the current status quo or the staff recommendation.  In any event, Mayor Roe opined that it was important to set a policy first, and then figure out implementation in light of current budget constraints.

 

Councilmember McGehee offered her support of that basis as a framework, opining that a compensation study was asked for and received, and needed to be done since the last one was accomplished in 2002.  Councilmember McGehee opined that her only concern was the ten (10) cities used for comparison and whether they were appropriate.  Councilmember McGehee further opined that finding eight (8) positions currently out-of-line was very problematic for her; and expressed her personal preference that those be brought into at least a minimal percentage with other positions.  Councilmember McGehee stated that there should be some acknowledgment by the City Council that they asked for and received this study; and to confirm that the City Council valued its staff.  Even though this was a difficult budget year and there were tough choices to make, Councilmember McGehee opined that the City’s hard-working staff should not be disregarded; acknowledging that the City was certainly not over-staffed.

 

Ms. Bacon, in an effort to not mislead anyone, advised that there were other more substantial under-market positions beyond those eight (8) positions presented; and if the City Council chose not to take into consideration the recommended 4.6% increase to pay plans, without the merit pay component, those listed were only after implementation of the 4.6%; and there may be other positions currently 20% under market.

 

Councilmember McGehee asked what dollar amount would be required to make at least equity among classifications for current non-exempt staff at 95.4%.

 

Mr. Bacon advised that those had not been calculated and it was not in line with current City policy; with Mr. Trudgeon clarifying that the information was not immediately available tonight.

 

Councilmember McGehee advocated bringing those positions in line comparable to everyone else.

 

Councilmember Etten opined that the 97% number meant something; and he supported getting rid of that as the City policy, even while recognizing that the City didn’t currently, and may not in the near future, have funds to fund it.  Councilmember Etten opined that it sent a poor message to staff to retain that 97% as a policy and not achieve it, even though it should be the goal for the City Council in the next few years.  Councilmember Etten acknowledged that the City could not fix this in 2013, or probably the next two (2) years, in addition to COLA; and while not yet ready to fix this in the short-term, he could not support the policy of 97%.

 

Councilmember McGehee concurred.

 

Councilmember Willmus advised that he didn’t look at from a perspective of whether it was insulting or not; opining that this was an organization, and there was a pay range in place for this particular organization.  Councilmember Willmus noted that different cities had different circumstances and compensation packages for their employees.  Councilmember Willmus advised that he was really struggling with this, since every time it came forward, there was a different number.  However, Councilmember Willmus acknowledged that while he didn’t have an answer, he agreed with Councilmember Etten that this is certainly something difficult to say; but questioned how a 100% policy could or would be implemented.

 

Councilmember Laliberte admitted that she was struggling with this as well; and the original intent had been to achieve equity between union and non-union employees, which was setting the City up for failure, since they would always be chasing union negotiations and waiting for the next compensation study to confirm that the City wasn’t at 100%.  Councilmember Laliberte stated that she struggled with defining it that way versus providing good wages and a good work environment.  To consider making financial adjustments in this particular year with recent legislative limits, Councilmember Laliberte opined would be very difficult to do.  However, in the upcoming Department Head budget discussions, if the City Council heard departments address their priorities and whether this was more important or a  higher priority than adding a volunteer coordinator, or this or that particular program or service, Councilmember Laliberte stated that this would provide a better context for her.  While appreciating receiving the Human Resources perspective, Councilmember Laliberte advised that she still needed to hear those department priorities, based on a flat, decreased or increased budget and levy and how they would respond.

 

Mayor Roe noted that the reason for the compensation study was to determine where the City fell in the market place in an effort to avoid attrition of employees.    Mayor Roe suggested that the City Council keep in mind that it would be very difficult to implement this in 2014, even if done in three (3) stages.  Mayor Roe suggested that one option, in 2013, would be to use reserves to avoid bumping against the levy limit.  However, Mayor Roe concurred with Councilmember Laliberte’s suggestion to have the discussion in the context of Department Head budget discussions, similar to that of the CIP funding crisis addressed several years ago; with operating costs reduced to apply to capital funding, with everyone taking a hit and solving CIP funding.  Mayor Roe noted that the City’s employees were one of its most important areas of capital; but spoke in opposition to borrowing ahead or using reserves as a way to defer the hit.

 

Councilmember Willmus concurred with the comments of Mayor Roe, specifically in the context of budget discussions.  Regarding the possible use of using reserves for funding, Councilmember Willmus opined that he was willing to look at that provided there was a more in-depth conversation and that it included a discussion of reserve ratios.

 

Mayor Roe cautioned using reserves requires the City to do that each year until revenue became available, creating the same sustainability problem currently being addressed.

 

Councilmember Willmus referenced former Councilmember Pust’s comment that there was a reason for organized labor in certain areas; opining that this was one of them.

 

Mayor Roe noted that this still didn’t address or avoid the cost.

 

Councilmember Willmus concurred; however, he noted that it made sense to step back and look at potential funding mechanisms, as suggested by Councilmember Laliberte and Mayor Roe in the context of the broader picture.

 

Mayor Roe suggested that the one thing needing to be done was for the City Council to establish its policy; recognizing that it didn’t mean that it could be accomplished overnight, or that an immediate plan would be available to do so.  If not acted upon tonight, Mayor Roe suggested that the policy be discussed and established in the very near future moving forward, as suggested by Interim City Manager Trudgeon.

 

For clarification, Ms. Bacon reviewed the discussion that there was some City Council consensus to achieve the 97% or beyond and eliminate the merit piece to the program.  If that was the consensus, Ms. Bacon advised that this made approximately $35,000 immediately available that would reduce the $44,644 and get closer to the 97% mark if the City Council wanted to move in that direction.

 

Councilmember McGehee concurred with everything discussed with the exception of using reserves to fund anything.  Councilmember McGehee expressed her willingness to abandon the merit pay based on staff recommendations; however, she didn’t have any clear direction on what the policy should be.  Councilmember McGehee stated that she was fine in using the $35,000 from the merit pay to offset the projected cost to the tax levy; and was happy to do that tonight.

 

At 10:00 pm, Willmus moved, Etten  seconded, extending the curfew by ten (10) minutes to 10:10 pm.

Roll Call

                        Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.  

                  Nays: None.

 

Regarding Councilmember McGehee’s suggestion to take action tonight to eliminate the merit pay component, Interim City Manager Trudgeon cautioned that this action should not be taken without the other components addressed, since it provided the only available option for the City’s top performers.  Mr. Trudgeon strongly suggested that the City Council not take that action tonight, even if they were of a consensus to move in that direction.

 

Mr. Trudgeon advised that the Department Heads would come to the upcoming budget meetings prepared to talk about this component as it relates to the overall operations of their specific department.  Mr. Trudgeon concurred with Mayor Roe on the need to focus on the policy, wherever it ended up, at which time strategies to achieve the policy could be determined.  Mr. Trudgeon opined that it appeared everyone was being realistic about the time needed to reach a goal, and if that goal could be put on paper and ideas formulated, it would be a great first step, while recognizing that it would not be possible to come up with the money overnight.

 

By consensus, staff was requested to provide more details on those positions where there were significant inequities; and a dollar amount to bring them up to 95%.

 

Mr. Trudgeon suggested that a draft policy be discussed at a future meeting, using staff’s three (3) recommendations as a starting point for modification.

 

Even though Interim City Manager Trudgeon will not be available that evening, Mayor Roe suggested putting this item on the July 8, 2013 meeting agenda to facilitate Ms. Bacon, who will be present for further discussion on the City Manager Search process.  After further discussion, Mayor Roe noted that this would allow for department budget discussions before that meeting as well.

 

By consensus, staff was directed to provide numbers of those outlying positions and dollar amounts to bring them within an equitable status of other positions; and to provide a draft policy for debate based on a proposed policy of 100%.

 

14.         Business Items – Presentations/Discussions

 

a.            Consider Setting Additional Council Meetings for the Purpose of Discussing the 2014 Budget

A bench handout was provided, polling possible dates of individual Councilmembers for Department/Council Budget meetings.

 

After some discussion, there were some additional conflicts, and some adjustments to individual schedules, with staff directed to further refine the three (3) potential dates for discussions, as well as adjusting current meeting agenda items to facilitate those discussions. 

 

By consensus, staff was directed to provide those potential dates as an action item at the next regular business meeting.

 

15.         City Manager Future Agenda Review

 

16.         Councilmember Initiated Items for Future Meetings

  

17.         Adjourn

Willmus moved, Laliberte seconded, adjournment of the meeting at approximately 10:13 pm.

 

                                                Roll Call

            Ayes: Willmus; Laliberte; McGehee; Etten; and Roe.

            Nays: None.