City Council Meeting Minutes
May 22, 2013
CALL TO ORDER: City Council convened in a General Committee meeting on May 22, 2013 at 6:30 p.m. in Council Chambers, 101 S. George St., York, PA, to receive general public comment, with the following Council members present: David Satterlee, Michael Ray Helfrich, Renee S. Nelson, Henry Hay Nixon, Vice President, and Carol Hill-Evans, President, with President Hill-Evans presiding.
GENERAL PUBLIC COMMENT
Manuel Gomez, resident, said he is not pleased that he had to bounce all around the county to oppose creation of the Greater York Regional Authority. He said the proposal was reckless and he feels we need to concentrate on greater issues facing our city like blighted properties and our commercial permitting process. He also mentioned that for the third time his right-to-know request was denied for information on the police license plate scanning system.
Franklin Williams, resident, commented on the election and applauded the candidates.
There being no further public comment, President Hill-Evans adjourned the General Committee meeting and convened in Legislative Session at 7:00 p.m., in Council Chambers, 101 S. George St., York, PA, with the following members present: David Satterlee, Michael Ray Helfrich, Renee S. Nelson, Henry Hay Nixon, Vice President, and Carol Hill-Evans, President, with President Hill-Evans presiding.
Members of the Administration in attendance included: Tom Ray, Director of Human Resources, and Assistant Solicitor Jason Sabol.
Members of York City Council staff in attendance included: Dianna L. Thompson-Mitchell, City Clerk.
Pledge of Allegiance: The Pledge of Allegiance was recited.
Approval of Minutes: Council dispensed with the reading of the Minutes of May 7, 2013 and unanimously approved them as written.
Correspondence and Announcements: President Hill-Evans read correspondence and announcements.
COMMITTEE MEETINGS SCHEDULED
Committee Work Session: Scheduled for Wednesday, May 29, 2103 at 6:00 p.m. in Council Chambers. Council will discuss items for the June legislative agenda.
STATUS OF PRIOR COMMITTEE REFERRALS
UPDATE: Greater York Regional Authority (Bill No. 3) – Council will take no further action at this time on Bill No. 3 – A Bill signifying intention to create the Greater York Regional Authority (GYRA). As the scope of the authority needs further clarification and there is no new information to deliberate, Bill No. 3 will not be discussed at Council’s May 29 committee meeting. Additionally, the June 4, 2013 public hearing scheduled for 6:00 p.m. is canceled and the Bill will not appear on the June 4 legislative agenda for action.
Councilman Helfrich explained that both North York and West York Borough’s have rejected the proposal to form the GYRA. He feels the rush to push this legislation through the process may have scared a lot of people. He said he would like to invite applicable parties to the table to discuss how we can save money and work together without having to enter into a formal contract.
Councilman Satterlee said introducing the Bill opened up some significant discussion and he supports further talks on the concept of regionalization.
Motion to keep in committee: A motion was made by Hill-Evans, seconded by Nixon, to keep Bill No. 3 in committee indefinitely. The motion passed by the following vote: Yeas – Helfrich, Nixon, Satterlee, Nelson, Hill-Evans – 5; Nays – 0. (Note: If there is no action on Bill No. 3 by December 31, 2013, the legislation will die in committee.)
SUBDIVISION / LAND DEVELOPMENT / HARB: None
FINAL PASSAGE OF BILLS / RESOLUTIONS
Final Passage of Bill No. 4, Ordinance No. 3, Session 2013, (View) A Bill amending the York City Budget for the year 2012 for the Bureau of Permits, Zoning and Inspection, to increase revenue and expenditures in the amount of $31,716.00 for other professional services, which was introduced by Nelson at the May 7 meeting of Council and read by short title, came up for final passage. On motion of Nelson, seconded by Nixon, Bill No. 4, Ordinance No. 3, passed by the following vote: Yeas – Helfrich, Nixon, Satterlee, Nelson, Hill-Evans – 5; Nays – 0.
Resolution No. 31, Session 2013, (View) A Resolution appointing Sharon Smith to the York City Board of Health to fill a vacancy created by the expired term of Robert Simpson, which term shall expire the first Monday of April 2018, was introduced by Hill-Evans, read at length, and on motion of Hill-Evans, seconded by Nelson, Resolution No. 31 passed by the following vote: Yeas – Helfrich, Nixon, Satterlee, Nelson, Hill-Evans – 5; Nays – 0.
Resolution No. 32, Session 2013, (View) A Resolution appointing Larry D. Homsher as a member of the York City General Authority to fill a vacancy, which term shall expire January 1, 2016, was introduced by Nixon, read at length, and on motion of Nixon, seconded by Helfrich, Resolution No. 32 passed by the following vote: Yeas – Helfrich, Nixon, Satterlee, Nelson, Hill-Evans – 5; Nays – 0.
Resolution No. 33, Session 2013, (View) A Resolution approving the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 229 union contract for the period of January 1, 2013 – December 31, 2015, was introduced by Helfrich, read at length, and on motion of Helfrich, seconded by Nelson, Resolution No. 33 came up for discussion.
Councilman Helfrich applauded the work of our IBEW staff and said that although he has questions, he doesn’t question their work ethics. He said Council must be sure we are acting responsibly and as such, several questions about the contract have developed since the April 24 committee meeting.
HR Director Tom Ray gave a brief history of the negotiation process. He said both sides sat down and negotiated and there was give and take on both sides. He said the contract includes structured pay increases but there is also an increase in health insurance contributions. Mr. Ray said the contract is equitable for the Administration and the IBEW.
Councilman Helfrich began to ask a series of questions but was interrupted by President Hill-Evans who stated that if there is going to be in-depth questioning, she suggests that Council refer this resolution back to committee and asked that all parties concerned attend to contribute to discussion.
Matthew Paules, Business Administrator for the IBEW, said although he understands Council’s position, he feels that negotiations have already taken place and doesn’t feel it would be appropriate for him to attend a committee meeting because he does not want this to turn into another negotiation process.
Councilman Helfrich replied that Council does not have the authority to re-open negotiations and that they would merely be seeking answers to several questions they have about the contract.
There being no further discussion, a motion was made by Nixon, seconded by Hill-Evans, to refer Resolution No. 33 back to the Business Administration Committee. The motion passed by the following vote: Yeas – Helfrich, Nixon, Hill-Evans – 3; Nays – Satterlee, Nelson – 2. As the motion passed, Council will discuss this issue further at its May 29, 2013 committee meeting (6:00 p.m. in Council Chambers).
REQUESTS FOR FUTURE MEETINGS: None
Councilman Helfrich congratulated the winners of yesterday’s Primary Election. He then spoke about new customer service initiatives proposed by Mayor Bracey to improve quality of service.
ADMINISTRATION COMMENT: None
NEXT MEETING: The next regular meeting of City Council is scheduled for June 4, 2013 at 7:00 p.m. (Public Comment commences at 6:30 p.m.) in City Council Chambers, 101 S. George St., York, PA.
ADJOURNMENT: There being no further business, the May 22, 2013 meeting of Council adjourned at 7:33 p.m.