09/07/2010 Town Council Study Session Summary

This Study Session was held for the purpose of reviewing and discussing the agenda items scheduled for the 9/9/2010 Council meeting. NOTE: As a result of Council discussion during this meeting, Minutes will now be kept by the Clerk of the Court for Study Sessions.

Here are the Highlights:

1. Linda Abbott expressed great concern with the costs for building Fire Station #10. She stated that the original conditions for the FEMA grant appear to have shifted from when the Council first approved the building construction. She understands the Town needs to have fire stations built in strategic locations, and that FS #10 will not require new hires but will shift personnel from other stations, but the concern is that additional money will be needed from the General Fund. It’s an unknown with which she is not comfortable.
Town Manager Collin Dewitt reassured Linda that the money is there within the SDF’s (System Development Fees), and there will be minimal impact to the General Fund.
Vice Mayor Presmyk expressed concern that the AZ Legislature might stop cash flow to municipalities for SDF’s.

2. Staff reported that the Higley & Baseline Intersection Improvements are being funded out of the $2.4 million MAG Prop 400 reimbursement money. This streets project is getting a higher priority than other projects, as approved at a previous Council meeting. It won’t negatively impact other projects. He advised a tentative completion date of 18 months

3. Jenn Daniels and other Council members are concerned that the Town will pay for the replacement/repair of a block wall costing $111,820. Won’t this set a precedent? Was the problem due to soil expansion? Staff advised that the wall was built incorrectly (County) several years ago, and residents have complained for the last 3 years that it needed repairs. Staff advised this is a unique situation.
Linda Abbott stated there should be a wall policy, if there isn’t one already.

4. The Council and Susan Goodwin, Town Attorney, discussed at length the current status of the request from Pocket Jacks for a liquor license. It appears that Pocket Jacks does not fit the zoning requirements. It is not a permitted use. Also, it appears that it is not permitted re gaming requirements.

5. Jenn Daniels advised that when she voted on 8/19/2010 in favor of directing the Town Clerk to have nomination packets available 120 days prior to the Town Council primary election, she did not realize at the time that this would give candidates only 30 days to collect signatures. Also, collecting sugnatures occurs during November, when there is a holiday. She asked that it be reopened at the next Council meeting. Les Presmyk agreed.

6. Mayor John Lewis brought up a discussion of the efficiency and effectiveness of study sessions as it relates to citizen input requesting that Minutes be taken at these meetings. Linda Abbott and Jenn Daniels both agreed that Minutes should be taken. Les Presmyk also stated he sees no reason why they shouldn’t be taken.

There was no need for a formal vote. Town Manager Collin DeWitt stated that he would take care of it. (I admire this man’s brevity with words.)