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Council Meeting Minutes
May 22, 2014
1. Roll Call
Mayor Roe called
the meeting to order at approximately 6:00 p.m. Voting and Seating Order: Willmus;
Etten; McGehee; Laliberte; and Roe. City Manager Pat Trudgeon, Finance Director
Chris Miller, and individual Department Heads were also present. Mayor Roe
stated the purpose of tonight's meeting to discuss the 2015 budget.
2. Approve Agenda
Willmus moved, Etten
seconded approval of the agenda as presented.
Etten; McGehee; Laliberte; and Roe.
3. Public Comment
Mayor Roe called
for public comment by members of the audience on any non-agenda items. No one
appeared to speak.
Communications, Reports, and Announcements
announced an opportunity for community volunteers to participate in "Community
Builds" to build playgrounds at Howard Johnson Park on June 7, 2014 and Materion
Park on June 14, 2014. Additional information available by calling Rick
Schultz at 651/792-7104.
Roe noted that this was a municipal election year for the City of Roseville;
with two councilmember seats and the mayoral seat up for election. Mayor Roe advised
that candidate filing at a fee of $5.00 fee ran May 20 through June 3, 2014 during
regular business hours at City Hall; and on June 20th, filing would
be extended until 5:00 p.m. Additional information available on line at the
City's website at firstname.lastname@example.org
or by calling Administrative Assistant/City Clerk Kari Collins at 651/792-7023.
Roe announced that the Roseville Human Rights Commission was seeking two
student members to serve on the Commission for two student vacancies through
the 2014/2015 school year, open to students in I.S.D. No. 621 of 623, or those
under the age of 21, with an application deadline of May 23, 2014. Additional
information is available by calling 651/792-7001 or at the City's website.
Roe noted the upcoming Memorial Day observation at Roselawn Cemetery on May 26,
2014 at 10:00 a.m. at Soldier's Rest; and encouraged the public to attend, and
to contact the Cemetery staff for additional information on this historically
Donations and Communications
6. Approve Minutes
7. Approve Consent Agenda
8. Consider Items Removed from Consent
9. General Ordinances
11. Public Hearings
Manager Patrick Trudgeon provided brief introductory comments as detailed in
the staff report dated May 22, 2014, and the preliminary report delivered on
May 12, 2014. Mr. Trudgeon advised that tonight's discussion would delve into
the budget requests from individual departments and represented unfiltered information
and requests with no changes made to-date. Mr. Trudgeon noted that this
provided an opportunity for conversation between staff and the City Council to
better understand staff priorities and take those into account.
Trudgeon noted that the City Council would be asked to provide their individual
priorities at the June 16, 2014 City Council meeting, and to define the overall
process and identify anything missing in budget requests. Mr. Trudgeon
requested that the City Council think about that upcoming discussion to provide
direction before he develops his presentation and City Manager-recommended
budget in July of this year.
Trudgeon advised that each Department Head would come forward with a brief
presentation and one-page handout highlighting their operations and basic
information, with dialogue and questions or comments of the City Council to follow
with those specific Department Heads.
Trudgeon advised that he and Finance Director Chris Miller had reviewed each
submittal and sat down with individual Department Heads. Mr. Trudgeon opined
that they each represented responsible budgets, even though the needs far
exceeded resources, creating tough choices and value judgments in the big picture
budget before narrowing it down.
Works Director Duane Schwartz
Schwartz reviewed the specifics of his department, advising that the proposed
2015 budget was fairly status quo, and highlighted those items outside normal inflationary
increases for staff and personnel, as well as contractual services and
supplies. Mr. Schwartz reviewed the ten budget areas, including the four enterprise
funds, and divisions in the Department, with 32 FTE (full-time equivalent)
employees, with an approved 2014 budget for capital and utility functions of
Schwartz reviewed several budget priorities he would like implemented in 2015
as noted: a right-of-way technician that would be fee-supported, and an additional
customer service position that would be utility supported. Mr. Schwartz also
noted potential increases in the 2015 snow and ice control program and contractual
Schwartz noted that this position would provide utility customer support and summarized
a general job description for the position, with current duties shared by
existing staff, increasing their workload and not providing sufficient time to
address the situation of having more crowded rights-of-way throughout the community.
Mr. Schwartz advised that this situation caused mistakes or omissions, allowing
for private utilities to be constructed over city-owned utilities, increasing
the City's costs and liability. Mr. Schwartz recommended consolidating those
functions to provide efficiencies, and eliminate the current practice of up to
three different people providing those services and/or visiting a development
site, while avoiding liability and conflicts that are currently evident.
Schwartz proposed a fee-supported position for regulatory functions increasingly
mandated over time. Mr. Schwartz further noted that the City's Engineering and
Public Works staff was providing more expanded services to the City of Falcon
Heights, with 2013 billings to that City at $145,000, and currently funding one
engineering position from those fees. Mr. Schwartz advised that rights-of-way
permits, plan reviews and oversight for private development (e.g. erosion inspections)
continued to increase.
Schwartz opined that development and permit fees would be adequate to sufficiently
fund and accommodate the position at this point in the fee structure.
Service Position-Utility Supported
Schwartz advised that two employees currently supported the entire department
for phones, data entry, and other administrative functions. With the implementation
of the asset management program over the last few years, and attempts to improve
communication and customer service opportunities, Mr. Schwartz advised that
interruptions of current staff to field phone calls and provide that customer
service, while attempting to perform their basic functions, was difficult to
accomplish. Mr. Schwartz advised that this frequently required staff-from
engineering technicians to himself-to interrupt their tasks to address those
customer service needs, especially as proven over the last year with storm
damages and winter weather issues.
Schwartz noted that the Finance Department had also indicated some additional
customer service needs, and proposed that this position, while housed in the
Public Works Department in the lower level of City Hall, could be shared with
Finance and/or other areas as applicable and as time allowed. However, Mr.
Schwartz proposed that the position be funded from utility enterprise funds
(e.g. water, sewer and Stormsewer).
these areas are not significant, Mr. Schwartz projected that they would exceed
an inflationary increase, especially in the snow and ice program due to the
City's depletion of reserves of those materials. However, Mr. Schwartz advised
that he had just received the state bid pricing for 2015, and fortunately, the
increase was not as significant beyond inflationary as originally anticipated.
Schwartz advised that, as the economy continues to improve, contractual costs
were increasing from contractors who'd held those costs fairly flat for a
number of years, as they tried to recover. Therefore, Mr. Schwartz advised
that costs were being seen that were larger than typical inflationary costs and
over anticipated projections.
Schwartz reviewed future challenges, as detailed in the department handout,
noting that costs would continue to increase as staff attempted to provide a
higher level of services and improve efficiencies. Some of those challenges
included the mandated MS4 requirements adopted by watershed districts to address
long-term climate changes and design of storm water facilities beyond the
capacity of the current storm system designed in the 1960's compared to today's new standards. Mr. Schwartz noted that stormwater facilities would need upgrading and provide flood control measures in future permits, also requiring modification of the City's system based on those higher standards.
Schwartz noted that with that growth in services, the City was getting over the
"bubble" in the life cycle of its streets, many built in the late 1980's and
1990"s, requiring increasing maintenance and long-term infrastructure funding
for the Pavement Management Plan (PMP).
Mr. Schwartz noted increasing lack of storage in the current Public Works
facility, and the need to start thinking long-term for additional storage of
materials and equipment.
the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Schwartz clarified that funding the two requested
positions would be done at current fee levels, with the exception of a possible
slight increase in utility rates to fund a basic customer service position in
the range of $50,000 with benefits. Mr. Schwartz opined that the current fee
levels should prove adequate for the rights-of-way technician.
the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Schwartz advised that there were not
yet projected cost estimates for increased mandates to meet MS4 standards.
However, Mr. Schwartz advised that the City Council had made significant
strides over the last few years in increasing utility and stormwater fees to
address infrastructure improvements and/or replacements. Therefore, Mr.
Schwartz advised that staff didn't see any drastic increases short-term, but as
new systems are designed for flood control and water quality, the needed
upsizing may require long-term funding sources and options.
the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Schwartz advised, with the increased
costs being realized in 2014 street materials and overall projects, in the
long-term, staff was projecting an additional need of $1 million annually to
fund the PMP, which he opined was still sufficient. Mr. Schwartz recommended
keeping the PMP as currently defined, with no additional assessments for mill
and overlay, and retaining construction assessments for property owners at 25%.
the request of Councilmember Willmus. Mr. Schwartz reviewed the number of miles
turned back from Ramsey County beyond the initial PMP parameters, and
completion of the Public Works facility. Mr. Schwartz estimated that, since
the mid-1990's, an additional 10 miles had been turned back; and an overall
increase in the city-wide system by almost five miles, or about a 10% increase
to the current load, for a total of 125 miles. Mr. Schwartz reviewed the
allowance by legislative action for Ramsey County to turn back roads and add them to the Minnesota State Aid (MSA) system, with funding for improving those roadways provided through gas tax dollars. However, Mr. Schwartz noted that those dollars were spread among more and more communities covering more and more miles, with the City of Roseville's allotment not keeping pace with construction costs and other needs. For the most part, Mr. Schwartz advised that the City was maxed out in designated MSA streets and what could be drawn from that fund.
the request of Councilmember Willmus, Mr. Schwartz confirmed that the proposed
staffing for the customer service position, even if shared by the Finance
Department, would be funded through the Public Works Department, but through
utility fees; with neither of the proposed positions relying on levy dollars
for wages and/or benefits or other employee costs. Mr. Schwartz clarified that
the customer service position would assist with the utility billing function,
also part of the Finance Department functions, and provide automated meter
reading program data entry.
the request of Councilmember Etten, Mr. Schwartz clarified that stormwater infrastructure
had not been built to current MS4 standards, as they had only recently been
the request of Councilmember Laliberte, Mr. Schwartz further clarified that
only those stormwater infrastructure projects going forward were required to
meet the new MS4 standards.
the request of Councilmember Laliberte, Mr. Schwartz confirmed that the two
proposed staff additions was intended as full-time for the entire year of 2015
the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Schwartz reviewed mitigation efforts
by staff for those areas experiencing repeat flooding in the City beyond
changes indicated due to climate change issues. Mr. Schwartz advised that
staff was continually seeking solutions based on their observations from year
to year, as well as new problem areas being found. Mr. Schwartz noted one
mitigation effort built into the 2014 street program in identified problem areas,
including working with the Park Renewal Program to reduce drainage issues at
Evergreen Park and near the B-Dale Club, by undergrounding stormwater efforts
in those areas. Mr. Schwartz noted that those areas identified as having
issues throughout the city, continued to be analyzed for mitigation as time,
funding and related projects arose. Mr. Schwartz noted that one of the major
problem areas near the Wilbert Vault Company was scheduled for construction
this year. One issue that had come up with the Ramsey County Library
"Roseville Branch reconstruction several years ago, as stormwater ponding was
added, was the finding that the original ponding area was overflowing into
adjacent back yards. While not being addressed as part of the 2014 project,
Mr. Schwartz advised that improvements were being made in overland outflow to
avoid future flooding of homes and/or garages in that immediate area, hopefully
eliminating or significantly reducing the problem.
the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Schwartz confirmed that the costs for snow and
ice removal, as well as contractual costs, estimated at $25,000, would be levy
MSA funding, Mayor Roe noted, with concurrence by Mr. Schwartz, that besides
additional miles in the overall system, the State was also collecting less
money in gas taxes due to less gas being purchased, which was a state-wide
legislative issue. Mr. Schwartz agreed that additional funding mechanisms had
been discussed with the legislature, but nothing happened in their last session
related to those discussions. Mayor Roe noted that the City's MSA fund would
soon be drawn down, and opined that the City needed to address the situation versus
waiting for a state solution.
Mayor Roe recessed the meeting at
approximately 6:38 p.m. and reconvened at approximately 6:41 p.m.
& Recreation Director Lonnie Brokke
Brokke provided a brief overview of 2015 budget priorities for the four budget
areas in the Department, and new initiatives, including completion of Park Renewal
Brokke noted that, with the new facilities coming online, additional funds in
the park maintenance area was indicated, as well as potential land acquisition
if completed as scheduled. Mr. Brokke noted his recommendation for reinstatement
of the park supervisor position, reinstatement of custodial staffing for the
Skating Center (RSC) and Harriet Alexander Nature Center (HANC), and two new
positions for a Forester and Recreation Programmer. With additional revenues
from new facilities and/or programming, Mr. Brokke estimated a 75% cost
recovery to add the Recreation Programmer position. Mr. Brokke noted the
anticipated $15,000 additional impact in seasonal recreation staff and skating
center position due to recent legislative action increasing minimum wage.
Brokke noted that it was typical for the Department to have up to three Interns
on an annual basis; and while they had been non-paid to this point and the City
had been fortunate to obtain good interns, it was found that most organizations
paid a minimal stipend, and recommended that the City do so as well.
Brokke noted the high level of use for the park system, and noted the inclusion
in the Department's strategic plan the intent to increase staffing as build-out
continued with the Park Renewal Program.
Brokke reviewed the individual position recommendations and their areas of
Park Supervisor: Project coordination and research/analysis
Custodial: While having moved contractually with parts of this
former position, Mr. Brokke opined that those areas (RSC and HANC) had
suffered, and with new park buildings coming on line, the need would be even
Forester: Mr. Brokke noted that this would be a new position, and
was justified by the increased needs with EAB, providing community contact and
advice, and the need for services provided by the current part-time position to
become more consistent and timely. Mr. Brokke noted that the addition of natural
resource efforts, as part of the Parks Renewal Program and community interests,
would also be part of this position, along with the recent City Council discussions
related to tree preservation and replacement.
· Recreation Programmer: As an active community with high
participation levels, and as new buildings and facilities come on line, Mr.
Brokke noted that an obvious increase in recreation programming would surely
follow, justifying this position.
trail plowing, Mr. Brokke noted that the Department currently had two machines,
not allowing for much flexibility in case of any mechanical issues or a larger
than normal snowfall. Mr. Brokke clarified that the machines were needed for
the 6' wide sidewalks versus the 8' width trails that would accommodate a truck
for plowing purposes.
an enterprise fund, Mr. Brokke noted that the golf course business had changed
over the years, not only in MN but nationwide. While the golf course remained
a great public recreation facility, playing an average of 25,000 to 30,000
rounds annually depending on weather and seasonal conditions, Mr. Brokke noted
that it often lived off the fund balance, with maintenance deferred on
buildings and/or equipment purchases delayed. However, Mr. Brokke advised that
the situation was now becoming closer that a serious discussion was needed regarding
the club house and long-term needs and improvements for the facility.
Brokke noted the increasing community conversations and interests in wildlife
management, with deer becoming a significant part of those conversations. Mr.
Brokke advised that typically he would field and average of ten calls per year
about deer populations, with tracking of the location of those deer over the
years; and coordination with Ramsey County for their wildlife program and
flyover of the entire county for a deer count in January of February of each
year after a fresh snowfall, at which time the deer count and map was
prepared. With the exception of 2011 when there was a lack of snow cover, Mr.
Brokke advised that the data over the last ten years of tracking provided
interesting information that would become part of future discussions, and
address different viewpoints on the situation. Mr. Brokke opined that the City
would become more involved in this discussion in the near future.
expressing the sincere appreciation of the community's volunteer labor force, Mr. Brokke noted the need for them to be nurtured and trained, and expressed his excitement with the upcoming work of the new Volunteer Coordinator and past experience in enhancing the City's overall efforts. Mr. Brokke recognized what a great community Roseville was and their willingness to help, with guidance from the City.
the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Brokke outlined dollar amounts for the proposed
2015 new initiatives:
Maintenance = $30,000 (levy funded)
Supervisor = $75,000 (of which an estimated $5,000 would be levy funded)
Wages = $15,000
Stipend = $5,000 (levy funded)
= $100,000 (levy funded) with the Department of Agriculture Report pending, and
$70,000 to $80,000 remaining from the original $100,000 allotment, with the
rationale to keep it funded as more cases are found.
Willmus requested additional information on the trail plowing adjacent to
public areas versus private properties; and a breakdown of actual mileage for
non-public areas by residential, commercial and public areas. Mr. Brokke noted
that the City plowed residential sidewalks/paths, with businesses performing
to the golf course and club house upgrades and updates, Councilmember McGehee asked
how much of the current $200,000 reserves may be needed.
Brokke responded that this would depend on an analysis of a remodel or replacement;
with the replacement allotment included in the Capital Improvement Program
(CIP) estimated at $1.1 million for replacement; and an unknown amount if for
a remodel. Mr. Brokke noted that the original club house was originally a
double-wide trailer, and its current condition and age warranted discussion in
the near future.
the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Brokke reviewed recent years of operation
at the golf course, use increased and declined based on weather; and opined
that the last year had been the most difficult in his twenty-four years at the
City, due to an early winter and late spring, limiting days of play. Overall,
Mr. Brokke opined that the number of rounds remained stable when the weather
McGehee requested additional information and an analysis of usage for Roseville
residents and non-residents.
the request of Councilmember Willmus, Mr. Brokke advised that the club house
had been put in place in 1959.
the request of Councilmember Etten, Mr. Brokke and Mr. Schwartz advised that
there was nothing included in the current contract for additional buildings to
be maintained. However, Mr. Schwartz advised that the contractor would have the
capacity to add onto their contract, at an additional cost.
the request of Councilmember Laliberte, Mr. Brokke advised that, in a normal
year with normal reasonable weather, the course had supported up to 45,000 rounds
played in the mid-1990s.
promoting and marketing the golf course, Mr. Brokke responded to Councilmember
Laliberte that staff was already performing those promotions, and worked with
in-house Communications staff by bolstering those efforts with social media, in
addition to typical advertising opportunities.
Laliberte noted the work being done by the Housing & Redevelopment
Authority (HRA) with area businesses and suggested that the Parks &
Recreation Department work with the HRA to promote the golf course harder.
Roe concurred with those suggestions, as well as suggesting that the Department
coordinate with the Roseville Visitor's Association (RVA) to promote the
course, similar to the RVA's charge to promote the OVAL.
the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Brokke confirmed that the course now offered
rental equipment and actively promoted it for out-of-towners at local hotels
and offered discount rounds, and other amenities for those visitors in the
area. Mr. Brokke noted that the golf course was great to play, as it was quick
for visitors, as well as seniors and youth, or families, and those needing to
get in a quick round. Over the last few years, at the request of the aging
population, Mr. Brokke noted that the course had implemented carts, which
served to bring some former golfers no longer able to walk the course back to
the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Brokke reviewed work to-date and
partnerships with the U of MN and Department of Agriculture; a breakdown of
tree species on City-owned boulevards and park land and in mowable areas in
parks. Through those partnerships, and by award of grant funds, Mr. Brokke noted
that the City had been able to reduce costs for the EAB program, with assistance
in treatment, removal and most important, replacement of trees lost. While
also serving to keep a significant piece of the City's tree inventory in place,
Mr. Brokke advised that there was no guarantee those funding sources would
continue; and therefore, opined that it was important to continue to take
advantage of those partnerships and grants to reduce costs as much as possible.
Chief Tim O'Neill
O'Neill highlighted the 2015 Fire Department Budget concentrating around
adjustments needed to transition the department from the current part-time staffing
model to a new staffing model centered on full-time firefighters. Mr. O'Neill
projected the cost to implement Step One of the new staffing model to be an additional
$68,125.00 for 2015. Mr. O'Neill provided a review of staffing options and
costs (Attachment A); emphasizing that these are not new positions, simply
full-time versus part-time and with associated costs. Mr. O'Neill projected
some savings with a smaller staff and fewer training needs, and advised that he
anticipated no hiring or additional training costs, uniforms, equipment or
turnout gear for new firefighters in 2015. Mr. O'Neill noted that by
restructuring several positions within the department, this would provide the
same service level for the community; and advised that the Department had spent
considerable time in looking at additional ways to save money and reduce their
2015 budget request to achieve full staffing implementation.
O'Neill reviewed the various models in Attachment A compared to the proposed
2015 budget, including Relief Association funding and net operating budget.
Mr. O'Neill referenced the City of Brooklyn Park, who was going through the
same type of challenges as the Roseville Department, and structured similarly,
with a proposal to their City Council to move to eighteen full-time
firefighters and cutting back on part-time staff, creating quite a different
situation than proposed for Roseville.
O'Neill advised that he wanted to provide a clear and full picture for the City
Council to be aware of final costs as the Department fully implemented the proposed
restructuring, and comparisons to other community's in today's dollars, and the
consistencies in evidence.
O'Neill briefly reviewed the other 2015 departmental priorities, as detailed in
the request of Councilmember Etten, Mr. O'Neill reviewed the Brooklyn Park
option with eighteen full-time firefighters and a full implementation model, including
their callback options for part-time staff based on the number of fires. Mr.
O'Neill advised that the Roseville option still allowed an opportunity for
part-time firefighters to work in the station beyond call back for major calls,
creating a better retention of those employees. Mr. O'Neill noted that costs
of having them on the payroll would still be in place, no matter the number of
calls per year or percentage they made. By allowing those part-time
firefighters to work shifts, Mr. O'Neill advised that they would be able to
keep their training on target at the station and provide better service to the
community as well.
the request of Councilmember Etten, Mr. O'Neill advised that once the staffing
had been completed restructured, he proposed 18-25 full-time firefighters, with
room remaining in the program for part-time firefighters, with a higher level
of staffing available on a weekly basis than provided in the Brooklyn Park
model, with associated costs of having part-time firefighters on shift versus
only on callback status.
McGehee reiterated her request for long-term net savings, opining that it made
it difficult for her to assess differences in the options as proposed compared
with the Brooklyn Park model; and providing opportunities for employees in the
Fire Relief Association versus those in the Public Employee Retirement
Association (PERA) and banking as many hours as possible to improve those
retirement funds. Councilmember McGehee further opined that this was a
long-term cost and very significant. Councilmember McGehee also requested additional
information about the proposed program, and one with full-time paid staff, in
more detail than provided in this material.
O'Neill advised that the last row of numbers on Attachment A provided the savings
referenced by Councilmember McGehee; and eventually eliminated the need for the
Relief Association and operational savings as well. Mr. O'Neill advised that
the only savings not represented are those on the capital side (e.g. turnout
gear or long-term SCBA's), but from an operational standpoint, the numbers
provided would be very representative.
McGehee stated that she would like to see those numbers in detail (e.g. turnout
gear) for twenty-four versus eighteen full-time firefighters as hired; opining
that a lot of that fine detail had yet to be presented.
O'Neill offered to break out those dollars from the CIP as requested by
Roe noted that the operating numbers provided net costs inclusive of savings;
and were CIP cost not part of the operational expenses but duly noted Councilmember
McGehee's request for more information.
the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. O'Neill reviewed the funding for a new fire engine
and medical response unit (MRU), based on periodic replacement of those units
based on mileage and a similar analysis based on industry standards. While the
City's EMS program was still in its infancy stages, originating in 2008, Mr.
O'Neill advised that two of the original vehicles remained, and therefore, he didn't have a lot of history beyond that. Based on their use and current mileage, Mr. O'Neill advised that the units were scheduled for replacement in 2015, at approximately 110,000 miles at their five year projected life cycle. Mr. O'Neill advised that those units would continue to be evaluated, and if in the middle of 2014, they appeared to have another year in them, their replacement would be further deferred accordingly.
the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. O'Neill further reviewed apparatus life expectancies
and changes based on the new fire station, and reductions in the fleet several
years ago. Mr. O'Neill advised that several years ago, the City Council approved
dropping one engine and one ladder truck, providing significant savings; and
would continue to maintain the current engine until maintenance costs became
prohibitive, as well as the rescue truck. Mr. O'Neill advised that three major
pieces of apparatus had been reduced with the one station concept, with the
engine replacement program able to fund the additional staff positions for five
years. Mr. O'Neill advised that the newest apparatus was the first vehicle to
move out, followed by the other pieces of apparatus based on age and rotated
over their 15-18 year life cycle until moved out of the fleet. Mr. O'Neill
emphasized that the newest vehicle in the fleet was always out first for the
crew on duty.
O'Neill advised that the Department would return to the City Council in the
near future with additional information related to purchasing consortium
options; noting that it typically took nine months of build out once contract
were issued for major pieces of apparatus; so the issue would come before the
City Council in the fall of 2014 to allow for that build out time.
the request of Councilmember Willmus, Mr. O'Neill advised that the approximate
cost of vehicles was $550,000 for an engine, and $45,000 for an MRU; and as
noted by Mayor Roe, those funds were routinely set aside in the annual CIP to
require no additional funding.
Chief Rick Mathwig and Sarah Mahmud
Mathwig provided an overview of the department, and supplemental data as part
of his presentation for the four areas of the budget; noting that the entire
budget was completely levy funded, and approximately 85% of the budget was for
a major priority for 2015, Mr. Mathwig asked for $198,200 for personnel and
vehicle costs (two commercial officers and vehicles) as an investment in public
safety for residents, merchants, and shoppers in the retail community. Mr.
Mathwig opined that current staff could not keep up with the commercial and retail
growth in the City without more patrols and reactive policing in commercial
areas all across town. Mr. Mathwig advised that the current staff was
stretched thin and unable to effectively meeting the needs for neighborhoods.
Mr. Mathwig noted that this additional police presence was needed throughout
the community's commercial districts, including smaller strip malls, not just
the more major retailers, in order to respond to rising crime trends throughout
Mathwig noted that this position had previously been removed from the Budget
and he was asking that it be reinstated, as well as the addition of one new
position in 2015. Mr. Mathwig noted that many of the issues were related to
things going on outside Roseville neighborhoods, and had resulted in a 67% increase
in police incidents in commercial areas (e.g. shoplifting, theft, disorderly
conduct) and affected not only the citizens in the community and shoppers, but
the broader community as well.
Mathwig advised that the Department's goal is to continue working proactively
address the situation by slowing this trend down. Mr. Mathwig advised that the
department had been building relationship with mall merchants, which was
creating a positive situation, not only in Rosedale and Har Mar, but throughout
the community, involving officers walking and talking to mall merchants and
making citizens, shoppers and merchants more at ease before an incident occurs.
Mr. Mathwig reiterated that a significant amount of this disorderly behavior in
malls was instigated by people outside of Roseville, and that it was the department's
goal to slow that down and make commercial areas in Roseville flourish and
redevelop in Roseville.
an example, Mr. Mathwig advised that, during the first thirty days of Wal-Mart
being open, they had fielded 86 calls directly related to them, far above his
cautious projections of anticipated calls there. If this trend continued, Mr.
Mathwig advised that the department would field 1,032 calls annually if the current
number of customers visited the site, and as the "bad guys" found out about
Wal-Mart's opening in Roseville.
Mathwig reviewed three additional priorities for 2015: tuition reimbursement
for continuing education courses for full-time department staff pursuing career
development and advancement (focused on master's degrees and above); volunteer
recognition for department volunteers, specifically Roseville Reserve Officers
and Park Patrol volunteers; and Crime Scene Team Equipment from CIP funds, to
expand investigative functions and trained investigators.
Mathwig reviewed the specifics of the Crime Scene Team, cooperatively initiated
with the Ramsey County Sheriff and surrounding suburbs to assign local officers
to major incidents (excluding fatal shootings) and when the Bureau of Criminal
Apprehension (BCA) was not called in; with special training provided to those
officers, who in turn do a better job locally in documenting all incidents for
the City. With ongoing redevelopment in the Twin Lakes area and retail dominant
areas in the community, Mr. Mathwig opined that this was a prime time for the
City to get ahead of the curve and be prepared to confront developing crime
Mahmud concurred and noted that, with the Super Bowl coming to the area, more
visitors would be coming to Roseville; and by having those connections and relationships
with businesses already in place, and it would better position the community.
the request of Councilmember Willmus, Mr. Mathwig summarized the City's
negotiated voluntary security agreement with Wal-Mart and their three year commitment
(initiated April of 2014) to pay an average of twenty-four hours per week,
fifty-two weeks per year, for off-duty officers to provide security on site;
provision of a laptop; and to have that site serve as a remote loss prevention
office. In addition to related to theft prevention and documentation, and
digital camera capabilities and holding; no overnight camping in their parking
lot; and quarterly meetings with the department staff, Mr. Mathwig advised that
this was the minimum things he'd been able to negotiate from his preferred
agreement. Mr. Mathwig advised that, if a commercial patrol officer is added
to the City, Wal-Mart's commitment is over.
Willmus requested additional information on the types of incidents being seen
at Wal-Mart, opining that the information from the St. Anthony Village Wal-Mart
store appeared to be significantly different than what was being shown to Roseville
by Wal-Mart; and he wanted to reconcile that, depending on how "incident" was
Mathwig advised that the information was available and would be provided, and
included thefts, crashes in the parking lot, proactive police visits; and
further investments of staff time to create a security presence at Wal-Mart.
the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Mathwig advised that tuition was part
of union contracts, but this request involved focuses on masters degrees and
above and could affect an officer's pay, and allow the City to get
better-educated employees. As noted by Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Mathwig confirmed
that it was rare for an officer without a four-year degree to apply, with tuition
part of their negotiated contract, the additional monies would go toward an MBA
or higher, above past education covered in their contract and what those
employees brought to the table.
a teacher, Councilmember Etten noted that, if he takes a class that increases
his compensation, he was required to pay for the continuing education in full
without reimbursement by his School District, which was typical of most School
Districts; with a higher pay grade when the courses were completed, but not reimbursed
for the class or related expenses.
Etten expressed appreciation for the bar graph provided in the supplemental
materials and entitled "Total Commercial Incidents including Proactive Police
Visits," supporting the positive approach to dissuade activities. Councilmember
Etten questioned if there was any rationale for how and why those crime trends
had unfortunately skyrocketed, whether it was a new base or just an abnormal
year; and how it fit into the overall picture. Councilmember Etten opined that
it was hard to budget on a one year explosion unless there was evidence things
were not going back to the previous level.
response, Mr. Mathwig stated that he saw no large changes in dynamics or
economics, and attributed the increase to the relationship building and personal
contact officers had when walking through retail and commercial establishments.
Mr. Mathwig opined that the crimes show that suspicious people observed and incidents
had always been there, but the department may not have been aware of them. Mr.
Mathwig again emphasized the relationship building and trust being built
allowing people to share information and for officers to see and hear what was
happening. Mr. Mathwig opined that the numbers in past years would have also
been higher if changes to the proactive policing operation had been made before
the proactive policing appeared to be a conscious decision on the part of the
department, recognizing the need for a commercial patrol, Councilmember Etten
questioned if that position would take over commercial patrols, freeing another
officer to return to neighborhood policing.
Mathwig responded that it would definitely allow officers more time for traffic
stops, speed and safety controls, and to have more of a presence in neighborhoods.
At the request of Councilmember Etten, Mr. Mathwig advised that it was not a
conscious operational change or decision in 2013 to move people out of
neighborhoods and into commercial areas, but simply the department's reaction
to changes happening. With the normal operating procedure to break the
community into four areas, with #1 and #3 on the west side, and #2 and #4 on
the east side, Mr. Mathwig advised that it was now typically a daily occurrence
for the east side cars going to assist the west side cars, which served to
negatively affect district integrities.
McGehee questioned if the way the department was reporting proactive visits,
not just calls, created a higher incident report, and whether a formal incident
report was being made or simply a verbal report with no follow-up.
Mathwig clarified that when alerted to those incidents, staff would take a report
and investigate them as much as possible after the delayed notification.
Mahmud noted that this was a significant piece of crime prevention: building
those relationships with business owners or apartment complex owners, managers
and/or tenants; as the more comfortable they were in reporting incidents and seeing
crimes decreasing, the better off everyone was. Ms. Mahmud noted that this
allowed reducing or eliminating the criminal elements; many tied to multiple
crimes in the community and area, and that information in turn allowed for a bigger
chunk of that crime element to be diminished.
supporting the proactive approach, Councilmember McGehee questioned how much
resulted in actually solving crimes; and sought additional data to base that
information. Councilmember McGehee requested additional clearance rate information
Mathwig advised that the clearance rate for the state remained similar over the
years; and remained the same, but since more proactive policing was being done,
whether at the time of the incident or a day later, the clearance rate remained
Laliberte questioned if, with the new bus rapid transit line (BRT) along
Snelling Avenue, would the City be expected to do any additional policing
beyond Metro Transit's security personnel.
Mathwig responded that Metro Transit generally did not ask the City to patrol
their stops unless they have preliminary information; and don't expect to
provide assistance if asked to do so.
volunteer recognition, Councilmember Etten questioned what was currently being
done for park patrol and other segments. Mr. Mathwig advised that currently
forfeiture funds were used to pay for that recognition; with the funding switch
being requested to recognize that volunteer effort on behalf of the community,
opining that it should therefore be part of the annual levy in recognizing the
the status of forfeiture funds and new legislation, Councilmember Willmus questioned
what Mr. Mathwig's forecasts were for future funding levels. Mr. Mathwig responded that, at this time, the only thing he was aware of was the funds were more towards fleeing and other incidents that wouldn't involve the City department.
Director Chris Miller
the Finance Department segregated into three divisions (Finance & Accounting,
Information Technology (IT), and License Center), Mr. Miller reviewed each.
Mr. Miller noted that the IT segment now served the Roseville City Hall campus
and thirty-five other buildings, still growing in number.
Miller advised that the department's number one budget priority for 2015 was to
provide additional IT engineering staff to support the City of Roseville
needs. Mr. Miller reviewed the growth of the IT segment over the last decade
as new technology solutions and software applications had been implemented by
the City of Roseville. While opining that this was the right path, and a return
on investment was obvious, Mr. Miller noted that the City had been remiss and
deferred formally acknowledging the need for back-end support for those
applications. In 2014 local dollars, Mr. Miller noted that the City's IT
engineering staff was still supported by two FTE's, the same as it had been ten
years ago, even though the business had doubled in size, IT support had not.
Mr. Miller opined that the only reason the department survived is due to the
dedicated salaried employees putting in 60 plus hours per week and on call
24/7. As he previously discussed with the City Council periodically over the
last eighteen months, Mr. Miller recommended that the City hire two additional
network engineer positions, their greatest need, with the current staffing for
desktop and application support being adequate at this time.
Miller advised that he was only asking for one of those positions in the 2015
budget, even though there was a demonstrable need for two positions. Mr.
Miller opined that this was prudent at this time, given other budgetary needs
and challenges in the City; and that the City could then give further
consideration to the second position in the future.
to the License Center, Mr. Miller noted that the City had been renting space in
strip mall adjacent to City Hall since 2000; and over the last 6 - 8 years, had
been managing the facility with the thought that the City may not continue
renting it long-term but be considering moving into a City-owned facility.
Therefore, Mr. Miller noted that the mindset was different if managing a
facility short-term versus long-term, with some maintenance issues deferred,
since the City was responsible for all lease-hold improvements (e.g. carpet,
painting, furniture, and fixtures) and therefore, some money each year had been
allocated and set aside in the CIP for the planned move into a City-owned
facility. However, if the City Council's decision is not to move accordingly,
Mr. Miller advised that some of those deferred items needed to be addressed
soon (e.g. electrical components not up-to-code, mold found present in the
kitchen and break room over the last year); and that a broader discussion was
needed in the near future to address the long-term situation for the License
Miller addressed some ongoing things that were important to the Department's
staff in continuing to provide excellent customer service, specifically training
and professional development for all Finance Department staff to address the
ever-changing and reorganizational efforts taking place. Mr. Miller noted that
this continued to evolve as the Finance Department sought ways to redesign and
reinvent itself and manage changes mandated or created, with a change in the balance
and skill set of employees.
Miller noted that there were always new mandates for the Department, including
new financial reporting and accounting requirements behind the scenes, and
increasing risk management and property liability insurance and claims against
the City. Mr. Miller noted that, compared to 5 to 10 years ago, the Finance
Department spent a significant amount of time, estimated between twenty to twenty-five
hours per week to manage insurance claims, previously about half that amount of
time. While this has been absorbed by existing staff, Mr. Miller noted that it
was an area of concern to him moving forward.
providing internal service functions for other departments, as well as the availability
of staff for Finance-related issues and to other departments, Mr. Miller advised
that it was important to continue attracting and retaining skilled staff to perform
conclusion, other than the additional IT personnel request, Mr. Miller noted
that his budget was mostly inflationary as detailed in his presentation materials.
Miller noted that the significant capital replacements listed in 2015 for the
IT Department had been included in the projected CIP budget for 2015 and should
return to a less significant number in 2016.
Etten expressed appreciation for Mr. Miller including cost projections for each
of his requests. Councilmember Etten questioned Mr. Miller's rationale in only
requesting the one IT engineer at this time.
Miller advised that his intent was to see how the one position worked out form
an operational standpoint; and whether a demonstrated need remained evident for
an additional position. From a phasing standpoint, Mr. Miller advised that he
preferred to integrate the one new position with the departments' existing
three engineers, allowing a better schedule rotation at any one time. Mr.
Miller reiterated that the intent would be for this position to be primarily
dedicated for Roseville, and not have the position spend half their time
working for other cities, but to meet the City of Roseville's needs and justify
the position. At that time, Mr. Miller advised that he would then re-evaluate
the situation to determine if other operational needs were still in evidence;
and at that time return to the City Council for their consideration of an
additional position if warranted. Mr. Miller opined that he thought this was
the prudent route to follow.
the request of Councilmember Willmus, Mr. Miller clarified that the current
License Center lease was renewed for three or four years, just negotiated last
year, and went through 2016 from his best recollection at this time.
Willmus questioned if Mr. Miller would consider offsetting the additional
License Center budget increase request of approximately $40,000 by offsetting
revenues from the operation versus levy dollars. Mr. Miller clarified that all
any revenues or reserves from fees from the License Center were contained
within the enterprise fund, and no levy funds were being requested for that
specific budget request.
the request of Councilmember Laliberte, Mr. Miller clarified that each of his
personnel requests included COLA, wage steps, healthcare and all related costs.
a follow-up from the May 12, 2014 budget discussion, Mayor Roe questioned the
amount set aside for the License Center, which Mr. Miller identified as approximately
$800,000 in reserves at this time. Mayor Roe suggested consideration and a
discussion was needed as to whether to refurbish an existing facility or build
a new facility; and whether it should be funded with a Revenue Bond or through
reserves; whether it was better to bond or pay cash. Mayor Roe asked that
staff provide an analysis of those options, and their recommendations for how
much should be set aside in reserves now and how much should be used to help
fund the General Fund and Levy. Mayor Roe opined that this would be important
information for that future conversation.
Willmus concurred with Mayor Roe's information request; and at his request, Mr.
Miller clarified that the License Center reserves were at $924,000, with
roughly $800,000 available, with the remaining funds needed to provide cash
flow for meeting general expenses and payroll, and not completely drain the
the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Miller clarified that the Finance Department was
levy supported; and the proposed new IT position would be 100% Roseville levy
supported, with some of the IT expense possibly borne by other cities, bur a
sizable increase of the IT operational costs exported to other cities in the
a follow-up to that statement, Councilmember Willmus noted his preference
raised in the past to define a multiplier, even though he was now aware that
couldn't be accomplished.
Miller responded that this was due to the IT function itself and how the consortium
worked and Roseville's investment in that business model. Mr. Miller noted
that he had provided that more detailed information in his April 4, 2014
memorandum to the City Council; with what the City charged to other cities not
done by use of a multiplier based on the rationale for that support situation;
with the City unable to apply a multiplier to recover its overhead costs, when
providing service to other cities, when those cities often provided their
space, electricity and resources at their sites versus at the City of Roseville.
Mr. Miller further noted that it was difficult to ask those entities to pay Roseville
overhead costs when the employees were not working at the Roseville City Hall.
Mr. Miller noted that some of the City's IT staff didn't even set up shop at Roseville;
and in addition, many of those entities provided storage space to house
Roseville equipment in their server rooms (e.g. City of No. St. Paul), but did
not charge Roseville for rent or power, while allowing Roseville to store data
and house servers at their locations free of charge. Mr. Miller advised that a
multiplier was designed to recover overhead, and was different than engineering
examples and other situations.
the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Miller agreed that the approximate overall
cost the overall increase was approximately $132,000.
Development Department (City Manager Patrick Trudgeon)
Manager Trudgeon advised that he, City Planner Paschke, and Code Officer Don
Munson had developed the 2015 budget for the Community Development Department.
Trudgeon provided a brief overview, clarifying that only about 12% of the total
department budget was levy supported, with the remainder or operations funded
by the Community Development Department (CDD) Fund and associated fees. Mr.
Trudgeon reminded Councilmembers that a shift had been made several years ago
to move nuisance code enforcement to the levy-supported General Fund, making it
Trudgeon noted that the CDD had struggled during the recession, but now was
returning to a stable and positive environment in its four divisions: code enforcement,
planning, economic development and GIS.
part of the CDD's budget priorities, Mr. Trudgeon reviewed rental licensing,
which was just being initiated, anticipating that moving the part-time position
for these inspections to full-time should be covered by license fees, with no
to economic and business retention efforts by the CDD, Mr. Trudgeon advised
that there would be increased costs, with the original $5,000 in the budget for
studies increasing to between $15,000 to $20,000 to study certain areas, with
nothing earmarked at this time, but consideration being given to the Twin Lakes
corridor to help define specific redevelopment issues and needs. With a new
hire for these efforts, Mr. Trudgeon anticipated great opportunities to move
ahead and provide marketing, newsletter outreach, speakers, business events,
and other things currently being formulated to enhance those business retention
and economic development efforts.
that, Mr. Trudgeon advised that other increases would involve personnel costs
and inflationary increases, with HRA funds leveraged to help fund the budget in
the past and continuing in the future.
to budget challenges, Mr. Trudgeon noted that the Twin Lakes area remained the
great unknown as far as the extent of City involvement; but anticipated that it
would most likely prove expensive. However, Mr. Trudgeon advised that no
dollars had been identified in the 2015 budget cycle at this time.
rental licensing, Mr. Trudgeon noted that this remained another unknown at this
time in the process, with more accurate information available next year after a
full year and cycles completed for property classification to determine cash
Trudgeon advised that beyond those items notes, the budget remained status quo,
with no new positions recommended, and the only levy increase involving normal
the request of Councilmember Willmus, Mr. Trudgeon confirmed that personnel
costs that had increased upon his appointment as Interim City Manager had been
rolled back. At the request of Councilmember Willmus, Mr. Trudgeon advised
that he anticipated the HRA coming forward with their 2015 budget request in
June or July, at which time they were scheduled for a joint meeting with the
City Council. At the request of Councilmember, Mr. Trudgeon confirmed, along
with Councilmember Etten, City Council member of the HRA that the 2014 HRA budget
included $25,000 for business retention and economic development (BR & E)
the request of Councilmember Etten, noted that current BR & E expenses had
only been $5,000 to-date; and before he agreed to increase permit fees to support
a $25,000 allotment for 2014, he would need to see a more detailed budget and intended
uses. Councilmember Etten acknowledged that the HRA budget wasn't yet fully
lined up, and he understood that the allotment may be expended over the
remainder of 2014, he expressed concern that the City increase their allotment
before that point of clarification was made. In rationalizing his concerns,
Councilmember Etten opined that, in an effort to promote development, caution
was needed to not increase fees to the level that discouraged people making
the request of Councilmember Etten, Mr. Trudgeon clarified that no increases in
permit fees had been outlined yet, with the exception of normal annual inflationary
costs, there was nothing tied to the proposed 2015 projected expenses and
Roe noted that fee revenue was increasing to levels experienced consistently
several years ago, and was basically driven by improved economics and activities.
Willmus clarified and reminded Councilmembers that the City Council did not set
the HRA budget, only the levy portion.
the request of Councilmember Laliberte, Mr. Trudgeon detailed the projected
increases for 2015 from those of 2014:
An increase of $15,000 for studies for a total of $20,000 specific
to economic development
Non-levy inflationary increases of $90,000
Overall budget increase from $1.34 million to proposed $1.44
million; with $90,000 from the CDD Fund, and the remaining from levy-supported
funds and attributed to inflationary personnel and supply costs.
the request of Mayor Roe, Mr. Trudgeon reported that the next scheduled
comprehensive plan update was scheduled for 2017, and would be a line item in
that year's budget.
Department - City Manager Patrick Trudgeon
the significant changes and reorganizational efforts of the Administration
Department over the last year, Mr. Trudgeon advised that no monumental changes
were proposed. Mr. Trudgeon noted that the remainder of 2014 and 2015 should
allow the department to catch its collective breath and continue coordinating
and streamlining communication efforts from that reorganization effort and
expansion and use of volunteers.
Trudgeon noted that the City's new Volunteer Coordinator would begin work next
week, allowing six months for her to work into 2015 and continue changes
Trudgeon noted that the Department would continue to support City advisory
commissions, noting additional costs for a Human Rights Commission recording
secretary, in addition to recording for newly-created Finance and Community Engagement
Commissions, and continued staff liaison support.
Trudgeon recommended an additional $7,000 be allotted for impacts of employee
health insurance costs to get back to a realistic level, since cuts had been
too severe in 2014. Mr. Trudgeon advised that mandates and related health care
systems remained an unknown at this time.
Trudgeon advised that an additional $10,000 was recommended for HRIS support in
2015, including annual software maintenance to allow installation of additional
modules to coordinate payroll and performance reviews. While the Human Resources
Department was supported by only one Administrative Assistant at this time and
not being addressed as part of the 2015 budget, Mr. Trudgeon cautioned
Councilmembers that they should give this staffing situation consideration in
the near future based on current workloads.
Trudgeon advised that he was recommending an increase in the 2015 Communications
capital budget, as part of CIP projections, for camera replacements and other
capital items, representing a significant increase. Mr. Trudgeon noted that
pending cable franchise renewal agreements was another unknown at this time,
and could affect flow of into the Communications Fund, even though at this time
the fee remained intact at 5%; but noting that there may be further restrictions
on what would be required of those dollars or how they were allocated.
However, Mr. Trudgeon noted that the Fund retained a healthy balance at this
time, and advised that more information should be available at the June 16,
the request of Councilmember McGehee, Mr. Trudgeon stated that he anticipated
no more than a $38,700 increase, pending those unknowns mentioned, which did
not factor in personnel cost increases (COLA, step increases, insurance, etc.)
and other items as addressed in Mr. Miller's presentation of May 12, 2014.
sought to request that staff be directed to provide several budget scenarios,
similar to those provided in the 2011 exercise to: 1) provide information on
what the budget/levy increase would look like if approved as presented tonight
with all requests incorporated; 2) what it would look like at a zero percent
budget/levy increase; and 3) what it would look like at a 5% reduced budget/levy;
and what staff would bring forward as measures to accomplish those various
the amount of work being asked of staff, Mayor Roe requested that such a request
receive support of the Council majority.
on available survey information, Councilmember Willmus disputed that it would
require that much work to provide the information.
McGehee asked that staff provide information from the last three surveys,
representing a total cost of approximately $48,000, to ensure that the City
Council and staff understand the data collected and utilized the information in
planning future budgets and priorities.
deference to the request of Councilmember Willmus, Councilmember Laliberte noted
that it was similar to her request when talking to the Finance Commission; and
if her request was made in the form of a motion, she would second it.
moved, Laliberte seconded, to direct staff to prepare a budget/levy document(s)
showing several budget scenarios: 1) provide information on what the
budget/levy increase would look like if approved as presented tonight with all
requests incorporated; 2) what it would look like at a zero percent budget/levy
increase; and 3) what it would look like at a 5% reduced budget/levy; and including
staff recommendations to accomplish each of those various scenarios.
Roe sought to clarify if this information request was to be accomplished before
presentation of the City Manager-recommended budget; and whether the first
scenario was to be all-inclusive of all individual department requests heard
tonight and only specific to the budget, not the levy itself.
Willmus confirmed both of those items as noted by Mayor Roe. However,
Councilmember Willmus stipulated that he would leave it up to the City Manager
as to whether the budget scenarios were presented before the City
Manager-recommended budget or in conjunction with his recommendations.
Councilmember Willmus referenced the similar exercise done in 2011 and how
helpful he had found those discussions before the City Manager presented his recommended
budget. Councilmember Willmus opined that this was of significant benefit for
the community to see the ramifications of various steps; and would provide a
more accurate picture of potential changes and how they would impact community
members, which was an important exercise to do from time to time.
Laliberte agreed that, as an exercise, it could illuminate discussions and how
services could be affected, and reflect on the City Manager's budget
recommendations. Councilmember Laliberte opined that she saw the exercise as a
preliminary to the City Manager-recommended budget presentation.
the request of Mayor Roe, and by Council consensus, the request was defined as
a one-page summary similar to those received tonight, with each department
outlining the impacts to their individual departments as a "big picture"
summary, not in spreadsheet format.
McGehee spoke in opposition to the motion, opining that it was an unnecessary
exercise and that staff was very responsible, honest and straightforward in
preparing their various requests. Councilmember McGehee opined that Roseville
citizens had also been straightforward in their survey responses about not
wanting reduced services, but having some control in their taxes.
Councilmember McGehee further opined that her personal perspective was that
there was a significant disparity in survey data and what is important to
residents in comparison to City Council-supported priorities. Councilmember
McGehee opined that it was the City Council's obligation to look at that survey
information first to determine if the City had been providing those priorities;
and based on her overall read and view, the City Council was not addressing
those repeating themes related to public safety, infrastructure and parks &
recreation priorities. Beyond the major effort to provide the fire station as
part of firefighter and EMT needs, substantial support of the Police Department,
and the large amount spent on the parks and recreation portion, Councilmember
McGehee suggested a need to discuss reserves as a way to reduce the budget and
levies rather than waste staff time and efforts on an exercise. Councilmember
McGehee opined that there were a lot of ways to provide services in more opaque
ways, such as hidden taxes through increased fees. With the Finance
Commission seeking additional information as well, and providing input on the
budget process, Councilmember McGehee questioned the purpose of asking staff to
perform in an exercise that wouldn't result in much new information.
action on the motion, Councilmember Etten advised that he found it an interesting
concept based on the merits of such an activity from the Finance Commission and
their perspective, which may prove helpful and may or may not make sense in the
end. Councilmember Etten suggested that this be charged to the Finance Commission
for their discussion and recommendation to the City Council. Regarding the
idea of levy-supported dollars, Councilmember Etten opined that any discussion
needed to be fair to all departments and include all costs -whether utility or
other fees - for the zero or <5% scenarios to avoid pulling from one department
or another. Councilmember Etten opined that this could significantly affect
departments quite differently, while wondering how and where the zero and
<5% scenarios would work when inflation was worked into the picture; and further
opined that it would create a huge gap in funding.
Willmus opined that it would show areas with reduced service levels, some
significant, and would be important to identify them upfront for the public.
Councilmember Willmus expressed his willingness to forward this to the Finance
Commission for their consideration.
the recommendation of Mayor Roe as to process, Councilmember Willmus withdrew
recognizing that the Finance Commission only met monthly and being newly-formed,
had only a few meetings to-date and coming up, Councilmember Laliberte suggested
that it asking them to weigh into this may pre-empt them from doing something
Etten suggested the Finance Commission consider it as a general philosophical
discussion: where and how this would or would not fit into the overall budget
discussion and process. While it would take up some of the Finance Commission's
meeting time, Councilmember Etten suggested that it be considered by them as a
one-time shot, not over several months, and not requiring a lot of background
preparation or presentations by staff.
moved, Etten seconded, referring to the Finance Commission for their
recommendation prior to the next City Council budget meeting, consideration of
the merits of including a zero percent of <5% budget as part of the annual
Willmus; Etten; McGehee; Laliberte; and Roe.
Trudgeon advised that the budget discussion, with the City Council reviewing
their individual and corporate priorities, would continue at the June 16, 2014
Roe asked that any pre-preparation be provided by staff by June 10, 2014 for
that June 16 meeting; duly noted by City Manager Trudgeon.
Roe announced the availability of Rosefest buttons and Rosefest starting on
Etten announced the May 31, 2014 kick-off for the Park Renewal Program from
1:00 to 3:00 pm. at Lexington Park (Lexington Avenue and County Road B).
Councilmember Etten noted that a formal presentation would be held at 2:00
p.m., with family and children activities available throughout that time.
Business Items (Action Items)
Business Items - Presentations/Discussions
City Manager Future Agenda Review
Councilmember-Initiated Items for Future Meetings
Etten moved, Laliberte
seconded adjournment of the meeting at approximately 8:52 p.m.