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     MINUTES OF THE MEETING OF THE MAYOR 

AND THE COMMITTEE-OF-THE-WHOLE 

OF THE CITY OF EAST MOLINE, ILLINOIS 

MARCH 17, 2008

 

ROLL CALL

 

Mayor Pro-Tem Helen Heiland called the meeting to order and directed City Clerk Arletta D. Holmes to call the roll.  The following Aldermen were present:  Helen Heiland, Luis Puentes, Cheri Bustos, David Kelley, Roseann Cervantes, Gary Westbrook, and Mayor Pro-Tem Heiland.   Absent:  Luis Moreno, and  

Mayor Thodos.    7: 38p.m. 

  

ADDITIONS/CORRECTIONS TO AGENDA

 

None 

 

 RETAIN TAX INCRIMENT FINANCE (TIF) CONSULTANTS    

(Mr. Hughes) 

Mr. Hughes stated that it is in the best interest of the City to expand the North Hill TIF District.  The City anticipating to expand the TIF by including all of Butterworth Park, Soule Bowl, Archer Drive, 23rd Avenue (from Archer Drive to 19th Street) and 18th Street (from 18th Avenue to 23rd Avenue).  In order to add land to the TIF, the City needs to have a TIF Consultant to prepare an amendment to our Project and Plan.  In the past the City has used Beth Ruyle of Ehlers & Associates. The City has experienced good results and staff would recommend to retain her firm again.  The quoted rate for this TIF expansion would be $12,500.00. 

 

RECOMMENDATION:   

It is staff recommendation to retain Ehlers & Associates for the expansion of the North Hill TIF with a fee not to exceed $12,500.00 

 

BUDGET IMPACT: 

This fee is a TIF eligible expense and would be paid from the North Hill TIF. 

 

The Director of Finance, Jim Hughes explained the expansion of the TIF District and how it could benefit the City overall. 

 

A motion was made by Alderman Kelley, seconded by Alderman Cervantes, to concur with the recommendation and direct the City Attorney to draft a resolution authorizing the Mayor and City Clerk to sign an agreement with Ehlers & Associates to amend the City’s project and plan for the expansion of the North Hill TIF in an amount not to exceed $12,500.00.   Upon roll call the following voted in favor:   Kelley, Cervantes, Heiland, Puentes, and Bustos.  The following voted to Passed:  Westbrook.  Motion carried.   

 

ROCK ISLAND FAIR GROUNDS – ROCK ISLAND COUNTY FAIR GROUNDS SURVEY  (Alderman Kelley) 

Alderman Kelley has conducted a survey to gain resident’s opinions regarding the racing season.  

 

Other municipalities have also faced this issue.  The Major complaints are:  

 

1) Noise pollution  

2) Dust & dirt  

3) Traffic problems 

 

Currently the City requires a “Special Events” approval. This approval is required for ALL events at the Rock Island County Fairgrounds.  

 

RECOMMENDATION:   

The Rock Island County Fairground Association should file a “Special Event” application for the racing season. Other events at the Fairgrounds may be requested as necessary. The application should list the complete schedule for all racing dates. This will make public the racing schedule, and allow the City to have some comment on the number of race dates. 

 

BUDGET IMPACT:   

None    

 

Discussion was held in regards to the Noise Survey that Alderman Kelley sent to all of his 5th ward residents.  Various issues have been identified such as noise parking, health, sanitation and some crime as far as altercations.  In the past Alderman Kelley had spoken with the Racing management at the Fair Grounds.  Alderman Kelley explained the results of the survey, also stated that previously there was a baffler that was placed on the engines to control the amount of noise that came out of the engine.  If you read the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations the baffler is still required.  However racing management does not like to put it on, or use the baffler or maintain it.  From the survey there are an equal number of supporters as there are opponents.  Alderman Kelley did call and has a discussion with Mr. Dennis Van Dell, Chairman of the Rock Island County Fair Grounds Board.  Mr. Van Dell was invited to attend the meeting tonight, but was unable to attend.  Alderman Kelley contacted three (3) residents, which two (2) are in attendance and they represent some of the sides that are unhappy with the Fair Grounds racing schedule.   

 

I would like some help from City staff and the City Council as to what we can do about this.  There is also an issue of Liquor License issued to the Rock Island County Fair Grounds, also the issue of Special Events.  Special events are issues like if you wanted to have a concert in the City and we need to get a permit for this special event.  A special event that is requested by the Rock Island County Fair Grounds is one (1) approval for the event, but the event is for the entire racing season and that is my objection.  Alderman Kelley does not think it is a situation or circumstances where the City can just say okay, because I have a lot of residents that are upset by it, they do not like the situation, they do not like the circumstances, and there are potential safety issues with the crowd as they leave the racing track.  I think the Police Department has done a good job of enforcing the rules and regulations.  The Fair Grounds hires off-duty police officers to be on-site for the event.   

 

Alderman Kelley asked the City Council for some support on this issue, also requested the City Council to review the Special Events Application this year and he would like to see specific dates come from the racing manager at the Rock Island County Fair Grounds so the City knows what the racing season is going to be.   

 

Mrs. Patricia Derrick - 1201 32nd Avenue, East Moline, Illinois, expressed her concerns stating that she has been a resident of the 5th Ward for twelve (12) years.  When the racing season starts they are unable to sit in their yard due to the noise and some resident have moved out of the neighborhood because of the noise.  The Derricks passed a petition regarding the noise at the Fair Grounds and collected over 3,000 signatures. 

 

Mayor Pro-Tem Heiland comments on the noise at the Fair Ground, stating she lives on Kennedy Drive and can hear the noise on a good day.  Mayor Pro-Tem Heiland wanted to know why the baffles are not being used by the Fair Grounds and was that stipulated in our Ordinance.  

 

 City Attorney Phares stated the City did have an agreement with regards to the decimal rating for the track.  The Police Department was involved in monitoring the readings for a period of time and there was a certain degree of cooperation from management at that time.  Management has changed and there probably needs to be some sort of re-establishment of the relationship with the management in order to perhaps make them understand the problems that the City deals with and it does require some action by management to impose some of the restrictions that are certainly reasonable and they do cut down on production of noise, it is a situation where I think there has to be on-going monitoring and communication. 

 

Additional discussion comments and suggestions were made regarding this issue, also could the head tax be increased. 

   

It has been recommend by the Council that a committee be formed with Alderman Kelley, Police Chief Moreno, and City Administrator, Keehner, to review the Ordinance and come back to Council with the information on April 7, 2008.             

 

EMERGENCY GENERATOR CONNECTION  (Mr. Willemarck) 

Both the Corp of Engineers and the National Weather Service (NOAA) have predicted a good possibility of a major flood on the Mississippi River this year.  The City’s largest pumping station is located at the outfall of Sugar Creek and has three 150 HP electrical pumps without an emergency backup power source connection.  It is proposed to request bids to install an electrical hookup at the pump house so in the event that the power goes out there will be power to the electrical generator to keep the pumps operational.             

 

RECOMMENDATIONS: 

Request bids for the portable generator electrical connections for the Sugar Creek pumps.  Bring bid results back to the City Council for final approval.   

 

BUDGET IMPACT: 

$48,000 is the estimated cost to hire an electrical company to install generator connections.          

$80,000 is budgeted in FY 2008/09 Drainage budget. 

 

A motion was made by Alderman Puentes, seconded by Alderman Westbrook, to concur with the recommendation as presented and direct the City Attorney to prepare the appropriate document and forward to the City Council for their consideration.  Upon roll call the following voted in favor:  Kelley, Cervantes, Westbrook, Heiland, Puentes, and Bustos.  Motion carried. 

  

SUPPLEMENTAL RESOLUTION – 1993 MFT PROGRAM   

(Mr. McDaniel – Assistant Director of Engineering) 

In continuing to finalize appropriate documents to close old Motor Fuel Tax (MFT) funded projects with the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), it was brought to staff’s attention that the following final expenses for this project:  

 

1993  Section No. 93-00115-00-RS     16th Avenue Resurfacing, 1st Street – 12th Street, exceeded the amount appropriated by the City Council. 

 

IDOT has brought this matter to staff’s attention and requested a Supplemental Resolution from City Council to properly close-out their book keeping for this project.  Please note that no additional funds are being spent; this resolution in effect retroactively authorizes funds that were already expended by the City in 1993.   

 

RECOMMENDATION:         

Approve Supplemental Resolution for MFT Section No. 93-00115-00-RS in the amount of $120,170.68 

 

BUDGET IMPACT: 

None. 

    

A motion was made by Alderman Westbrook, seconded by Alderman Cervantes, to concur with the recommendation to approve a Supplemental Resolution for MFT Section 93-0115-00-RS in the amount of $120,170.68 and direct the City Attorney to prepare the appropriate document and forward to the City Council for their consideration.  Upon roll call the following voted in favor:  Kelley, Cervantes, Westbrook, Heiland, Puentes, and Bustos.  Motion carried.   

 

SUPPLEMENTAL RESOLUTION – 1998 MFT PROGRAM 

(Mr. McDaniel – Assistant Director of Engineering) 

In continuing to finalize appropriate documents to close old Motor Fuel Tax (MFT) projects with the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT), it was brought to staff’s attention that the following final expenses for this project. 

 

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