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City Council Meeting Minutes

November 19, 2009

CALL TO ORDER: City Council convened in a General Committee meeting on Thursday, November 19, 2009 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. (Note: Council met on Thursday instead of Tuesday due to a family emergency with City Clerk Dianna L. Thompson.)

GENERAL PUBLIC COMMENT

Richard Nolden, 227 Harding Court, York, PA, complained of parking enforcement and said he paid three $15 tickets in one day and spent $400 in tickets in June and July.

Steve Young, 9 N. Newberry St., York, PA, wished members of the community a Happy Thanksgiving.

Edgar Rodriquez, 320 E. Philadelphia St., York, PA, owner of “Wholy Chicken” thanked York residents for his business success. He then announced a free meal giveaway scheduled for Wednesday from 12 noon to 5 p.m. at 320 E. Philadelphia St.

Manuel Gomez, 55 E. Philadelphia St., York, PA, pleaded with Council and the Administration to continue White Rose Community Television. He then briefly discussed changes to the zoning ordinance regarding low income housing.

Lamar Burton, 115 W. Jackson St., York, PA, and owner of “First Class Travel” said local businesses need more personal connections with city government.

Jane Heller, Spring Garden Twp., said 268 E. Market St. is owned by an absentee landlord who lives in Dallastown. She then discussed leaves on the sidewalk and how some owners don't clear their leaves which causes a navigation hazard for pedestrians. She said there are no ordinances regulating leaf removal and feels Council should consider adopting such an ordinance.

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: Deputy Chief Steve Buffington, Fire Department, and Brian Davidson, Director of the Bureau of Housing Services. Jim Gross, Director of Public Works, Dan Robinson, Director of Community Development, Kevin Schreiber, Director of Economic Development, Mark Whitman, Police Commissioner, John Senft, Fire Chief, and Michael O’Rourke, Business Administrator, were absent Also absent was Assistant Solicitors Don Hoyt and Shaleeta Washington.

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

Pledge of Allegiance: Led by Joanne Borders the Pledge of Allegiance was recited.

Approval of Minutes: A motion was made by Texter, seconded by Hill-Evans, to dispense with the reading of the Minutes of November 4, 2009, and approve them as written. The motion passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

Correspondence and Announcements: President Musso read correspondence and announcements.

PRESENTATIONS: None


COMMITTEE MEETINGS SCHEDULED: None

COMMITTEE REPORTS

Community Development Committee, Genevieve Ray, Chair: Comprehensive Plan 2030: A public meeting was held on November 10, 2009 at 7:00 p.m. in City Council Chambers, 1 Marketway West, 3rd Floor, York, PA, to discuss and receive public comment on the York City Strategic Comprehensive Plan 2030. City Council held a subsequent public hearing to further discuss the 2030 Plan at 6:00 p.m. on November 17, 2009 in City Council Chambers. Consideration of adoption of the Plan will take place tonight, Thursday, November 19, 2009. (View Comp Plan)

Business Administration Committee, Vice President Carol Hill-Evans, Chair: A meeting was held on Wednesday, November 11, 2009 at 7 p.m. in Council Chambers to further discuss Bill No. 37, Session 2009 (View) - A Bill amending Article 169 “Police Officer's Pension Fund”; Bill No. 38, Session 2009 (View) - A Bill amending Article 171 “Firefighter's Pension Fund”; and Bill No. 39, (View) Session 2009 - A Bill amending Article 167 “Officer's and Employees Pension Fund” of the Codified Ordinances. All Bills are being amended in order to comply with the requirements of the Internal Revenue Code as they pertain to the deferred taxability of the pension benefits accrued. Vice President Hill-Evans said discussions continue and another committee meeting has been scheduled for December 1, 2009 at 6:00 p.m. in Council Chambers.

2010 Proposed Budget Meetings: Council will hold public meetings on the proposed 2010 York City Budget on November 23, 2009, November 30, 2009 and December 7, 2009 beginning each evening at 6:30 p.m. in City Council Chambers. Please contact the City Clerk for scheduling information or you may visit www.yorkcity.org for more information.

SUPPLEMENTAL AGENDA
A motion was made by Texter, seconded by Hill-Evans, to waive the provisions of Resolution No. 215 of Session 1969 to permit consideration of a supplemental agenda containing two Bills. The motion passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

Introduction of Bill No. 40, Session 2009, (View) A Bill adopting the year 2010 York City Budget, was introduced by Hill-Evans, read by short title and deferred until the December 15, 2009 meeting of Council.

Introduction of Bill No. 41, Session 2009, (View) A Bill fixing the tax rate for the year 2010, was introduced by Hill-Evans, read by short title and deferred until the December 15, 2009 meeting of Council.

SUBDIVISION / LAND DEVELOPMENT / HARB
Resolution No. 136, Session 2009, (View) A Resolution accepting the recommendations of HARB in issuing a certificate of appropriateness for work to be covered in the applications approved by HARB for Barb Hobaugh for work to be done at 130 S. Newberry St., Kweku S. Parker, Sr. for work to be done at 484-486 W. Philadelphia St., and Shirnell Wallace & Winston Pinnock for work to be done at 214 S. Pine St., was introduced by Musso, read at length, and on motion of Musso, seconded by Ray, Resolution No. 136 passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

CONSENT AGENDA

Introduction of Bill No. 42, Session 2009, (View) A Bill amending Article 351 “Juke Box Tax” of the Codified Ordinances to include vending machines and to amend taxes to be imposed, was introduced by Ray, read by short title, and deferred until the December 1, 2009 meeting of Council.

President Musso asked where did this legislation come from.

Brian Davidson, Director of the Bureau of Housing Services, explained that this legislation comes out of the Permits Department and will be used to address soda and similar vending machines.

President Musso asked Director Davidson to revisit and reconcile the definition for vending machines. He also asked that he review the Financial Management Study and stated he feels this should be a “fee” not a “tax” imposed for city purposes.

Director Davidson said he would consider the suggestions and will further research the legislation.

There being no further discussion, Bill No. 42 was deferred until the December 1, 2009 meeting of Council.

FINAL PASSAGE OF BILLS / RESOLUTIONS

Motion to table. A motion was made by Vice President Hill-Evans, seconded by Texter, to table the following Bills (37-39) and schedule a Business Administration Committee meeting for December 1, 2009 at 6:00 p.m. in Council Chambers to further discuss the legislation:

Introduction of Bill No. 37, Session 2009, (View) A Bill amending Article 169 “Police Officer's Pension Fund” of the Codified Ordinances to comply with the requirements of the Internal Revenue Code as it pertains to the deferred taxability of the pension benefits accrued.

Introduction of Bill No. 38, Session 2009, (View) A Bill amending Article 171 “Firefighter's Pension Fund” of the Codified Ordinances to comply with the requirements of the Internal Revenue Code as it pertains to the deferred taxability of the pension benefits accrued.

Introduction of Bill No. 39, Session 2009, (View) A Bill amending Article 167 “Officer's and Employees Pension Fund” of the Codified Ordinances to comply with the requirements of the Internal Revenue Code as it pertains to the deferred taxability of the pension benefits accrued.

The motion to table Bills 37-39 and schedule a Business Administration Committee meeting passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

Therefore, Council tabled Bills 37-39 and will discuss them further in a Business Administration Committee meeting scheduled for Tuesday, December 1, 2009 at 6:00 p.m. in Council Chambers.

NEW BUSINESS

Resolution No. 137, Session 2009, (View) A Resolution consenting to the appointment made by the Mayor of Daniel Robinson as a member of the Susquehanna Area Regional Airport Authority to fill the unexpired term of David Carver, which term shall expire January 5, 2012 and James H. Anderson, III as a member of the Susquehanna Area Regional Airport Authority to fill the unexpired term of Daniel Robinson, which term shall expire January 5, 2010, was introduced by Musso, read at length, and on motion of Musso, seconded by Hill-Evans, Resolution No. 137 passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

Resolution No. 138, Session 2009, (View) A Resolution adopting the York City Comprehensive Plan – 2030, was introduced by Ray, read at length, and on motion of Ray, seconded by Smith, Resolution No. 138 came up for discussion.

Councilwoman Ray thanked all involved in this very important process. She said this document will help guide our community for the next 20 years.

Councilwoman Smith also thanked everyone who took part in developing this document. She said she is especially grateful for the devotion shown by neighborhood representatives for contributing and relaying the needs of our neighborhoods.

Councilwoman Ray then discussed a few amendments being made to the plan, marked Exhibit A (View), which were not substantial enough to warrant another public hearing or re-approval process.

There being no further discussion, Resolution No. 138 passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

Resolution No. 139, Session 2009, (View) A Resolution supporting and approving the exchange of real estate between the City of York and the York City Housing Authority in order to enable the construction of the City of York's greenway project and further enable the Housing Authority to construct its Revitalization Project on the area now known as Thackston Park, was introduced by Ray, read at length, and on motion of Ray, seconded by Hill-Evans, Resolution No. 139 came up for discussion.

Councilwoman Ray thanked Councilwoman Smith for allowing her to introduce this Resolution. She said this is a tiny piece of a bigger project that will take place over the next several years. We are not losing Thackston Park as feared by some residents, she said.

Craig Zumbrun, Deputy Executive Director of the Housing Authority of the City of York, outlined the project. He said the earliest buildings in the Codorus Homes project were built in 1954. After flooding, the land became unstable and later required demolition of some homes. Their plan is to redevelop this entire area and to that end, they have engaged a firm to help them with planning and development of this project. Mr. Zumbrun stated that this Resolution, which authorizes a land swap, is the first of five phases. He outlined the entire process in detail and answered questions from Council.

Mr. Zumbrun said approval of this Resolution will prove the Housing Authority's ability to obtain the site and will be one of many documents to be filed with PHFA before the February 26, 2010 deadline. He said there is a demand for affordable housing and they hope this project will allow that.

Vice President Hill-Evans asked if the Codorus Homes residents would be able to purchase market rate housing to be built. Mr. Zumbrun said many residents have expressed an interest to remain in the Codorus Homes neighborhood, which was taken into consideration. He said their intent is to offer housing to displaced residents and the first units built will be rental units.

President Musso said once the land swap between the Codorus Homes Project area and Thackston Park takes place, will the new park keep the “Thackston” name.

Mr. Zumbrun responded that they will make sure Helen Thackston's memory is represented in the new park. They plan to install statues and plaques in her memory. He stated that they want to make this a world class park and have even considered naming the new housing area “Homes at Thackston Park”.

Council then discussed at length Helen Thackston and development plans, funding, and project vision.

Councilman Texter said he is pleased to hear Mrs. Thackston's name will be preserved and said he hopes to one day give more recognition to Mattie Chapman.

Councilwoman Smith asked that the Housing Authority continue to be fair to the residents. She said the plan is coming along nicely and the residents deserve this redevelopment. Councilwoman Smith emphasized that safety of the children must come first as this area directly borders the Codorus Creek and she wants to prevent accidental drownings.

Lamar Burton, 115 W. Jackson St., York, PA, asked when the next public meeting will be held to discuss this project. Mr. Zumbrun said no meetings are scheduled at this point, however, the Housing Authority's Social Service workers meet with residents weekly. Mr. Burton said people need to know what they need to do to qualify for purchasing homes, such as pre-approval loans, debt to ratio, etc. Mr. Burton encouraged the Housing Authority to provide home-buying workshops to these residents.

Manuel Gomez, 55 E. Philadelphia St., York, PA, stated that the absence of residents here tonight makes him wonder if they were actually informed about this project. He asked if there were minutes to any of the public meetings during this process. Mr. Zumbrun said the Housing Authority is an open and transparent body and minutes to their meetings are kept, though not verbatim. Mr. Zumbrun then outlined in detail the public notification and participation process involved with this project.

Joanne Borders, 334 W. Princess St., York, PA, said she wouldn't have known to be here this evening if she wasn't on another Board so she understands Mr. Gomez's concern. She said that maybe the Housing Authority could have done a little more outreach, however, she did say she appreciates the discussion and reassurance as to what the residents can look forward to. Mr. Borders said unfortunately there are some residents in the Codorus Housing Project that don't understand what's going on but as long as they are taken care of and will benefit from this project, then thumbs up.

Mr. Zumbrun reiterated that the Housing Authority's Social Services staff have reached out multiple times to each resident in the Cordorus Homes Housing Project and they have held several public meetings at the community center, however, not all residents took advantage of this forum or the resources provided.

Steve Young, 9 N. Newberry St., York, PA, asked how many homes would be built. Mr. Zumbrun explained that approximately 44 homes will be built in the first phase of the project with more homes being added during the second phase. In total, Mr. Zumbrun said about 400 units will encompass the project area but they won't know the exact amount until hard information is obtained. Mr. Young said let's make sure we can fill the homes and accommodate those who will be losing their homes to this project.

There being no further discussion, Resolution No. 139 passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

Resolution No. 140, Session 2009, (View) A Resolution amending a list of fees for the Bureau of Permits, Planning and Zoning to become effective January 1, 2010, was introduced by Ray, read at length, and on motion of Ray, seconded by Texter, Resolution No. 140 was deferred until the December 1, 2009 meeting of Council. (Note: Ordinance No. 19 of 1997 regulates that fee amendments must sit for at least one meeting prior to consideration of passage.)

Resolution No. 141, Session 2009, (View) A Resolution amending Fire Code Permit fees to become effective January 1, 2010, was introduced by Ray, read at length, and on motion of Ray, seconded by Texter, Resolution No. 141 was deferred until the December 1, 2009 meeting of Council. (Note: Ordinance No. 19 of 1997 regulates that fee amendments must sit for at least one meeting prior to consideration of passage.)

Resolution No. 142, Session 2009, (View) A Resolution amending licensing fees as established in Article 1761 “Licensing and Inspection of Tenant Occupied Residential and all Institutional Occupancies” of the Codified Ordinances to become effective April April 1, 2010, was introduced by Ray, read at length, and on motion of Ray, seconded by Texter, Resolution No. 142 was deferred until the December 1, 2009 meeting of Council. (Note: Ordinance No. 19 of 1997 regulates that fee amendments must sit for at least one meeting prior to consideration of passage.)

Resolution No. 143, Session 2009, (View) A Resolution amending false alarm fees and standby fees for the Fire Department to become effective January 1, 2010, was introduced by Ray, read at length, and on motion of Ray, seconded by Texter, Resolution No. 143 was deferred until the December 1, 2009 meeting of Council. (Note: Ordinance No. 19 of 1997 regulates that fee amendments must sit for at least one meeting prior to consideration of passage.)

Resolution No. 144, Session 2009, (View) A Resolution authorizing a budget transfer in the amount of $5,000.00 for the Department of Information Systems to cover additional postage and shipping charges for the Fire Department, was introduced by Hill-Evans, read at length, and on motion of Hill-Evans, seconded by Texter, Resolution No. 144 passed by the following vote: Yeas – Ray, Hill-Evans, Texter, Smith, Musso – 5; Nays – 0.

REQUESTS FOR FUTURE MEETINGS


Business Administration Committee, Vice President Carol Hill-Evans, Chair: A meeting has been scheduled for Tuesday, December 1, 2009 at 6:00 p.m. in Council Chambers to further discuss Bill No. 37, Session 2009 (View) - A Bill amending Article 169 “Police Officer's Pension Fund”; Bill No. 38, Session 2009 (View) - A Bill amending Article 171 “Firefighter's Pension Fund”; and Bill No. 39, (View) Session 2009 - A Bill amending Article 167 “Officer's and Employees Pension Fund” of the Codified Ordinances. All Bills are being amended in order to comply with the requirements of the Internal Revenue Code as they pertain to the deferred taxability of the pension benefits accrued.

2010 Proposed Budget Meetings: Council will hold public meetings on the proposed 2010 York City Budget on November 23, 2009, November 30, 2009 and December 7, 2009 beginning each evening at 6:30 p.m. in City Council Chambers. Please contact the City Clerk for scheduling information or you may visit www.yorkcity.org for more information.

COUNCIL COMMENT: None


ADMINISTRATION COMMENT: None

NEXT MEETING: The next regular meeting of City Council is scheduled for December 1, 2009 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 November 19, 2009 meeting of Council adjourned at 9:15 p.m.