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City Council Meeting Minutes

May 6, 2008

CALL TO ORDER:

City Council convened in a General Committee meeting on Tuesday, May 6, 2008 at 6:30 p.m. in Council Chambers, 1 Marketway West, 3rd Floor, York, PA, to receive general public comment, with the following Council members present: Genevieve Ray, Cameron Texter, Toni Smith, Carol Hill-Evans, Vice President, and Joseph R. Musso, President, with President Musso presiding. Mayor John Brenner was not present.
GENERAL PUBLIC COMMENT

Joe Jackson, 22 Boundary Ave., York, PA, discussed the Mayor’s ticket and tow initiative, an initiative whereby vehicles are ticketed and towed on streets where signs are posted prohibiting parking during street cleaning hours. The fine for no parking is $15 and the charge for the tow is $120. Mr. Jackson feels the towing charge is excessive and suggested that the city purchase its own tow trucks and hire its own tow truck operators. Additionally, he said the towing company hired by the city is disrespectful to the residents. Mr. Jackson stated that Lancaster and Harrisburg both have its own operators and vehicles and strongly suggested the City of York do the same.

Gerry Turner, 1201 S. Pine St., York, PA, also spoke in opposition of the ticket and tow program. He questioned why the ticket and tow initiative isn’t implemented throughout the city and doesn’t understand why only certain neighborhoods are being targeted. Mr. Turner then touched on the topic of rail connection from York to Baltimore, which he supports.

Franklin Williams, 528 W. Market St., York, PA, expressed several concerns about Comcast (operator of the city’s cable television system) with regard to programming changes, fees and proposed upgrades.

Manuel Gomez, 357 W. Philadelphia St., York, PA, commented on proposed revisions to Article 741 “Park Conduct” to be introduced this evening (Bill No. 24). The Bill proposes to update language, add a non-smoking provision, remove provisions for security deposits, and include language to require insurance provisions for events involving 100 or more people.

Russell Roach, 265 S. Pine St., York, PA, discussed handicapped parking and asked what he needs to do to secure a handicap parking space in front of his home. President Musso said he would forward Mr. Roach’s questions to Community Development Director Kim Bracey for follow-up.

There being no further public comment, President Musso adjourned the General Committee meeting and reconvened in Legislative Session at 7:00 p.m., in Council Chambers, 1 Marketway West, 3rd Floor, York, PA, with the following members present: Genevieve Ray, Cameron Texter, Toni Smith, Carol Hill-Evans, Vice President, and Joseph R. Musso, President, with President Musso presiding. Mayor John Brenner was not present.

Members of the Administration in attendance included: Jim Gross, Director of Public Works, John Senft, Fire Chief, and Michael O’Rourke, Business Administrator. Also present was Don Hoyt, Assistant Solicitor. Kim Bracey, Director of Community Development, Matt Jackson, Director of Economic Development, and Mark Whitman, Police Commissioner, were absent.

Members of York City Council staff in attendance included: Dianna L. Thompson, City Clerk.

Pledge of Allegiance: The Pledge of Allegiance was recited.

Approval of Minutes: A motion was made by Hill-Evans, seconded by Smith, to dispense with the reading of the Minutes of April 15, 2008, and approve them as written. The motion passed by the following vote: Yeas –Hill-Evans, Smith, Musso – 3; Abstained – Ray, Texter - 2; Nays – 0. (Note: Ray and Texter abstained their vote, as both were absent for the April 15 Council meeting.)

PRESENTATIONS: NONE

COMMITTEE MEETINGS SCHEDULED

Public Works Committee, Councilwoman Toni Smith, Chair: Meeting scheduled for Tuesday, May 13, 2008 at 7:00 p.m. in Council Chambers, to discuss Bill No. 24, (View) a Bill amending Article 741 “Park Conduct” of the Codified Ordinances to update language, add a non-smoking provision, remove provisions for security deposits, and include language to require insurance provisions for events involving 100 or more people.

COMMITTEE REPORTS: NONE

SUPPLEMENTAL AGENDA

A motion was made by Texter, seconded by Smith, to waive the provisions of Resolution No. 215 of Session 1969 to permit consideration of a supplemental agenda containing one Resolution. The motion passed unanimously.

Resolution No. 77, Session 2008 (Supplemental Agenda Item)(View), A Resolution authorizing an agreement with M&T Bank to provide financing for the Guaranteed Energy Savings Project (Summary) in the form of a 15 year tax exempt municipal lease purchase in the principal amount of $1,638,974.00, at a rate of 4.46%, was introduced by Hill-Evans, read at length, and on motion of Hill-Evans, seconded by Smith, Resolution No. 77 came up for discussion.

Business Administrator O’Rourke explained that the Administration looked at various funding options and felt this option was the best course to take because (1) this is not a debt and (2) the process was much quicker. He stated that RFP’s were sent to 14 lending institutions, a notice was posted on the website, and a newspaper ad was placed, however, only two proposals were received. Administrator O’Rourke went on to explain that there was less than 1/10% difference between both proposals. Funds will be deposited into an escrow account at zero cost. The city will finance $1,638,974.00 over a 15-year period at 4.46% interest. He said the city will use this escrow account to make payments to Johnson Controls, the contractor secured for this project (View). Administrator O’Rourke then answered questions from Council.

Councilwoman Smith asked Administrator O’Rourke to report back to Council in one year on how much money the city saved using the Guaranteed Energy Savings Program (GES), which Administrator O’Rourke said he would do.

There being no further discussion, Resolution No. 77 passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

SUBDIVISION / LAND DEVELOPMENT / HARB

Resolution No. 78, Session 2008, (View) A Resolution accepting the recommendations of HARB in issuing a certificate of appropriateness for work to be covered in the applications submitted by Rock Commercial Real Estate, Cami Spiridonoff, for work to be done at 11 E. Market St.; Kurt Blake for work to be done at 337 E. Philadelphia St.; Alliance Commercial Realty, James E. Redding, Jr., for work to be done at 148 S. Pershing Ave.; and Sam Myers for work to be done at 448-450 W. Philadelphia St., was introduced by Hill-Evans, read at length, and on motion of Hill-Evans, seconded by Smith, Resolution No. 78 passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

CONSENT AGENDA

Introduction of Bill No. 21, Session 2008, (View) A Bill amending the 2007 Budget to appropriate revenue/expenditures in preparation of the 2007 Audit, was introduced by Hill-Evans, read by short title, and deferred until the May 20 meeting of Council.

Introduction of Bill No. 22, Session 2008, (View) A Bill amending the 2008 CDBG & HOME Program Budgets to reflect the 2008 HUD Award and an amendment to the 2008 Action Plan, was introduced by Ray, read by short title, and deferred until the May 20 meeting of Council.

Introduction of Bill No. 23, Session 2008, (View) A Bill amending Article 1763 “Referenced Standards” of the Property Maintenance Code to update references to various codes, was introduced by Ray, read by short title, and deferred until the May 20 meeting of Council.

Introduction of Bill No. 24, Session 2008, (View) A Bill amending Article 741 “Park Conduct” of the Codified Ordinances to update language, add a non-smoking provision, remove provisions for security deposits, and include language to require insurance provisions for events involving 100 or more people, was introduced by Smith, read by short title, and came up for discussion.

Motion to refer Bill No. 24 to committee. A motion was made by Smith, seconded by Texter, to refer Bill No. 24 to the Public Works Committee. The motion passed unanimously. A Public Works Committee meeting will be held on Tuesday, May 13, 2008 at 7:00 p.m. in Council Chambers to discuss said Bill.

Councilwoman Smith asked that a Solicitor be present during the committee meeting.

Councilman Texter asked that the Solicitor’s Office provide Council with an opinion on possible challenges, if any, with regard to the insurance provisions and to provide citations of law as to Council’s authority to impose outdoor smoking restrictions. He said he researched state law and found that Council has the power to impose smoking restrictions for indoor public facilities but was unable to locate Council’s authority to be able to impose outdoor smoking restrictions.

Assistant Solicitor Hoyt said he would not be able to attend the May 13 Public Works Committee meeting due to a prior commitment but said he would check on Assistant Solicitor Washington’s availability. He asked Council to forward questions to the Solicitor’s office prior to this meeting. He also stated that the Solicitor’s Office has reviewed the proposed legislation and would not have submitted it to Council if it were thought to be unconstitutional. However, he said he would have the Solicitor’s Office forward a formal written opinion to Council.

There was no further discussion on Bill No. 24.

FINAL PASSAGE OF BILLS / RESOLUTIONS

Resolution No. 79, Session 2008, (View) A Resolution amending Bill No. 1 of Session 2008, a Bill amending Part 1 “Administrative Code” of the Codified Ordinances to require candidates for the office of Treasurer and Controller to show proof of bonding to qualify for office, was introduced by Texter and read by short title. On motion of Texter, seconded by Smith, Resolution No. 79 came up for discussion.

Councilman Texter explained that Bill No. 1 was introduced at Council’s February 5 meeting. Then at the February 19 Council meeting, a motion was approved to table Bill No. 1 to challenge and further review an opinion provided by the Solicitor’s office on Council's lack of authority to enact such legislation. At Council's March 3 meeting, this amendment was presented and the Bill was again tabled to allow for review and comment by the Solicitor’s Office. The Solicitor's office provided additional comments and, therefore, this amendment is being presented based on those comments.

The amendment basically removes the following language: “To qualify to serve as Controller / Treasurer, either by election or appointment, a person must show proof that the person can furnish such fidelity bond and insurance as is already required by general law, city ordinance and/or resolution. Candidates for election for Controller / Treasurer shall file such proof with the City Clerk before the last day for filing a petition to appear on the ballot for election.” He said this language was removed as the Solicitor opined that Council cannot add additional qualifications to the positions of controller / treasurer because the 3rd Class City Code and PA Election Code govern municipal elections for 3rd Class Cities.

There being no further discussion, Resolution No. 79 passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Texter, Smith, Musso – 4; Nays – Hill-Evans – 1.

Final Passage of Bill No. 1, Ordinance No. 15, Session 2008, (View) A Bill amending Part 1 “Administrative Code” of the Codified Ordinances, to require candidates for the office of Treasurer and Controller to show proof of bonding to qualify for office, which was introduced by Texter at the February 5 meeting of Council, and tabled at the February 19 and March 4 meetings of Council, came up for final passage. On motion of Texter, seconded by Ray, Bill No. 1, Ordinance No. 15, as amended by Resolution No. 79, passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Texter, Smith, Musso – 4; Nays – Hill-Evans – 1.

(Note: Bill No. 1, Ordinance No. 15, as amended and finally adopted, would require applicants seeking to fill a vacancy for treasurer and controller to file proof of their fidelity bond and insurance upon a deadline established by Council. Additionally, the duly elected treasurer and controller are directed to file said bond with the City Clerk no later than 30-days prior to taking the oath of office.)

Final Passage of Bill No. 18, Ordinance No. 16, Session 2008, (View) A Bill amending the 2008 Budget to increase expenditures by $150k for the 2008 Street Improvements Project, which was introduced by Smith at the April 15 meeting of Council, and read by short title, came up for final passage. On motion of Smith, seconded by Texter, Bill No. 18, Ordinance No. 16, passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

Final Passage of Bill No. 19, Ordinance No. 17, Session 2008, (View) A Bill amending the 2008 Budget to appropriate revenue/expenditures in the amount of $37,860.00 for a Municipal Recycling Program Grant, which was introduced by Smith at the April 15 meeting of Council and read by short title, came up for final passage. On motion of Smith, seconded by Hill-Evans, Bill No. 19, Ordinance No. 17, passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

Final Passage of Bill No. 20, Ordinance No. 18, Session 2008, (View) A Bill amending the 2008 Budget to appropriate expenditures in the amount of $10,664.00 for the purchase of a vehicle for use by the Parking Bureau, which was introduced by Hill-Evans at the April 15 meeting of Council and read by short title, came up for final passage. On motion of Hill-Evans, seconded by Smith, Bill No. 20, Ordinance No. 18, passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

NEW BUSINESS

Resolution No. 80, Session 2008, (View) A Resolution appointing John M. Fox as an alternate member of the Historical Architectural Review Board (HARB) to fill the unexpired term of Lilah Haxton, which term shall expire the first Monday of January 2011, was introduced by Ray, read at length, and on motion of Ray, seconded by Smith, Resolution No. 80 passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

Council spoke kind words about Ms. Haxton and said she contributed significantly to the City of York. Council also welcomed Mr. Fox and thanked him for his willingness to serve.

Resolution No. 81, Session 2008, (View) A Resolution recognizing the York County Black Golfers’ Association as a civic and/or service organization within the context of the Local Options Small Games of Chance Act, as amended, was introduced by Musso, read at length, and on motion of Musso, seconded by Hill-Evans, Resolution No. 81 came up for discussion.

Leo Cooper and James Crosby, members of the YCBGA, were onboard to outlined the purpose of the YCBGA. In an email received by Ron Martin, member of the YCBGA, the following narrative was sent outlining the YCBGA:

Narrative

The YCBGA dates back to 1996 when 4 York city residents began an annual September pilgrimage to Myrtle Beach, SC for a week of golf and good fellowship. Since then, the group grew to nearly 40 members, and in 2005 with the passing of the first bylaws, became the York County Black Golfers Association.

Members of the YCBGA are African-American professional men who are York City and York County residents. Ranks include city workers, firefighters, a retired York City police chief, business executives, a TV news anchor, a Harley Davidson supervisor, a Graham engineer, an AME pastor, stockbroker, federal worker, realtor, retired banker, school teacher, contractor, county corrections officer, and retired army officer.

Two years ago, the group realized how minority youth participation in the game was lacking in the York community - made even more apparent by the dissolution of the York High golf team. So members dedicated themselves to being a non-profit group that would network with the community to help promote golf to minority youth. As the bylaws say, the YCBGA’s goal is to promote educational, social and recreational interests among minority youth by mentoring the young people interested in participating/learning the game of golf along with the rules, customs, and protocol of the game to instill sportsmanship, manners, good habits, the value of punctuality, honesty, and respect for others.

The YCBGA is not as yet affiliated with a state or national organization... but the group envisions supporting local programs already in place to support minority youth golf, as well as ones created by the YCBGA.

The YCBGA’s principal working address is in the City of York and do expect activities to have their greatest impact on minority youth in York City. To date, the YCBGA has two major events--a golf tournament which this year will be the second annual... and a winter gala held at the York Fairgrounds banquet center, which will serve as the YCBGA’s annual awards dinner.

Mr. Cooper and Mr. Crosby answered several questions from Council regarding membership, female participation, targeted youth, activities, and future affiliations. Mr. Cooper stated that this designation would allow them to operate small games of chance throughout York County. He also said they have already filed for 501(c)(3) status but are waiting for approval.

Councilwoman Ray asked whether the YCBGA serves girls as well as boys, which Mr. Cooper confirmed the group does.

There being no further discussion, Resolution No. 81 passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

Mr. Cooper and Mr. Crosby thanked Council.

Resolution No. 82, Session 2008, (View) A Resolution awarding a contract to York Tractor, Inc. for the purchase of a 2008 Tractor with attachments for use by the Bureau of Parks and Sanitation, which said purchase shall be in the amount of $38,214.30 and financed through a five year lease purchase agreement through M&T Bank and Real Lease, Inc., was introduced by Smith, read at length, and on motion of Smith, seconded by Texter, Resolution No. 82 passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

Resolution No. 83, Session 2008, (View) A Resolution authorizing the lease/purchase of two (2) 2008 Crown Victoria Police Package vehicles from Warnock Fleet, East Hanover, NJ, for use by the York City Police Department, through PA State Contract #4400001570, in the amount of $22,985.00 for each vehicle, and installation of a light-bar, radio, striping and other related equipment in the amount of $9,073.00, for a total purchase price of $55,043 and financed through Real Lease, Pittsford, NY, was introduced by Texter, read at length, and on motion of Texter, seconded by Smith, Resolution No. 83 passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

Resolution No. 84, Session 2008, (View) A Resolution authorizing a budget transfer in the amount of $83,174.04 for the Bureau of Housing Services to cover 2008 expenses, was introduced by Ray, read at length, and on motion of Ray, seconded by Texter, Resolution No. 84 passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

Resolution No. 85, Session 2008, (View) A Resolution authorizing a budget transfer in the amount of $9,000 for the Fire Department to cover 2008 training, travel, and book subscriptions, was introduced by Ray, read at length, and on motion of Ray, seconded by Texter, Resolution No. 85 passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.


REQUESTS FOR FUTURE MEETINGS

Public Works Committee, Councilwoman Toni Smith, Chair: Meeting scheduled for Tuesday, May 13, 2008 at 7:00 p.m. in Council Chambers, to discuss Bill No. 24, (View) a Bill amending Article 741 “Park Conduct” of the Codified Ordinances to update language, add a non-smoking provision, remove provisions for security deposits, and include language to require insurance provisions for events involving 100 or more people.

COUNCIL COMMENT

Vice President Hill-Evans reminded residents to be mindful of trash and to deposit appropriately.

Councilwoman Smith thanked the Public Works Department for clearing the brush along Pennsylvania Ave.

President Musso read several press releases issued by Mayor Brenner’s office. He then briefly discussed the Homestead Exclusion legislation and congratulated State Representative Eugene DePasquale on getting this legislation approved.

ADMINISTRATION COMMENT: NONE

NEXT MEETING: The next regular meeting of City Council is scheduled for Tuesday, May 20, 2008 at 7:00 p.m. (Public Comment commences at 6:30 p.m.) in City Council Chambers, 1 Marketway West, 3rd Floor, York, PA.

ADJOURNMENT: There being no further business, the Tuesday, May 6, 2008 meeting of Council adjourned at 8:27 p.m.