MINUTES OF THE MEETING OF THE MAYOR
AND THE COMMITTEE-OF-THE-WHOLE
OF THE CITY OF EAST MOLINE, ILLINOIS
OCTOBER 20, 2008
Mayor Thodos 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, Luis Moreno, Cheri Bustos, David Kelley, Gary Westbrook, and Mayor Thodos. Absent: Roseann Cervantes.
ADDITIONS/CORRECTIONS TO AGENDA
VOLUNTARY CURBSIDE RECYCLING (Mr. Lambrecht)
Resolution 08-59 (July 2008) accepted Midland Davis' proposal for voluntary curbside recycling and authorizes the City Attorney and City Administrator to finalized the agreement. Eagel Enterprises Recycling Inc. has provided the City Council a proposal as of October 6, 2008 to provide voluntary curbside recycling. Additionally, now Midland Davis has provided a revised proposal concerning a voluntary curbside recycling program because of the Eagle Enterprises proposal. Representatives from Midland Davis Corporation and Eagle Enterprises Recycling, Inc., gave presentations to the Committee and answered questions
Rescind Resolution 08-59 accepting Midland Davis' July proposal. After comparing the two proposals staff's recommendation is to go with the revised proposal from Midland Davis.
The program is self funding except for a small amount of administration duties by putting monthly fee on the water and sewer bill.
A motion was made by Alderman Moreno, seconded by Alderman Puentes, to approve the proposal from Eagle Enterprises. Upon Roll Call the following voted in favor: Moreno, and Puentes. The following voted against: Bustos, Kelley, and Heiland. The following Passed: Westbrook. Motion defeated 3 – 2
A motion was made by Alderman Bustos, seconded by Alderman Heiland, to approve the proposal from Midland Davis. Upon Roll Call the following voted in favor: Bustos, Kelley, and Heiland. The following voted Against: Moreno, Puentes, and Westbrook. Mayor Thodos voted in favor breaking the tie vote. Motion carried 4 – 3.
CITIZEN SURVEY (Alderman Bustos)
In an effort to improve the quality of services we provide our citizens their feedback is a necessary component of this improvement. A citizen survey is an excellent way to bridge the communication gap between citizenry and local government, measures our service delivery and improves it, and gauges our citizen's satisfaction. Using a survey will enable us to plan for our future and balance our priorities.
Direct the City Administrator to customize citizen survey with input from elected officials and administrative staff, reach agreement with selected survey firm(s) detailing cost, scope of work to be provided, and time period in which survey will be completed and results provided.
A motion was made by Alderman Kelley and seconded by Alderman Bustos to proceed with the survey by Personal Marketing Research and direct the City Attorney to customize the survey question and develop a contract. Upon roll call the following voted in favor: Puentes, Moreno, Bustos, and Kelley. The following voted against: Heiland, and Westbrook.
Motion carried 4 – 2.
2008 TAX LEVY (Mr. Hughes)
This will be the first presentation of the 2008 Tax Levy. Further information will be placed in your mail boxes. In summary this proposed tax levy shows an estimated reduction in the actual tax levy and in the tax levy rate. This is the third consecutive year for a property tax decrease in both the dollar amount and the tax rate. The decrease in the total tax levy will be $23,168 (0.50%) and a decrease in the tax levy rate of $0.0302 (1.65%). This levy will not require a public hearing. The big change is the reduction in Social Security Medicare of $11,337; Police Pension $13,415; and Firefighter's Pension of $25,203. These decreases are offset somewhat by an increase in the Library levy of $24,841. The Emergency Radio Bond is paid in full this year. Last year the city levied $85,000. This levy was added to the levy for the Police Protection Fund. This decrease in revenues continues the $20.000 levy for demolition; $91,500 three new squad cars which were in last year's levy. These are the levies the City Council has some control over. We are funding Insurance and Tort Judgment at $660,000.
This item was for discussion only and will be discussed again at the next Committee of the Whole meeting.
DEMOLITION OF 1337 MORTON DRIVE (Mr. Motzer)
The owner of 1337 Morton Drive is deceased and this property has been vacant for some time. The title search showed three interested parties. Proper notification has been sent to those parties with no response. I ask that due to the condition of this property that it be demolished for the safety and health of the neighborhood.
That the City Council approves the City Attorney to proceed with the demolition process.
Approximately $8,000.00 from Demolition Fund
A motion was made by Alderman Westbrook, seconded by Alderman Moreno, to concur with staff recommendation as presented. Upon roll call the following voted in favor: Puentes, Moreno, Bustos, Kelley, Westbrook, and Heiland. Motion carried.
VEHICLE PURCHASE (Mr. Lambrecht)
Bids were received on Monday, October 13, 2008 to replace a 1997 F250 4x4 Pick-up (unit #151 Park) with a snow plow at the Maintenance Services Department, Park Division. The bids are as follows:
Bid Price Trade-in Total Bid Price
Reynolds Motor Co. $29,581.92 $4,250.00 $25,331.92
River City Ford $30,068.00 $4,000.00 $26,068.00
Mills Chevrolet $35,971.00 $2,000.00 $33,971.00
Green Chevrolet Incomplete Bid (did not meet specifications as requested)
Reynolds Motor Co. was the low bid at $25,331.92 therefore, based on the low bid staff recommends Reynolds Ford be awarded the bid.
The Park Fund, Operating, Motor Pool Purchase, 500-4401-743.0 has $30,000 budgeted to cover the replacement cost for this vehicle.
A motion was made by Alderman Moreno, seconded by Alderman Westbrook, to award the low bid of $25,331.92 to Reynolds Motor Company, for the purchase of a 4x4 pick-up truck with a snow plow. Upon roll call the following voted in favor: Puentes, Moreno, Bustos, Kelley, Westbrook, and Heiland. Motion carried.
RESIDENCY POLICY (Alderman Moreno)
In an effort to be more proactive, understanding that current and future retirements and resignations will drain our existing labor pool and to remain aggressive in a highly competitive hiring market it has become necessary to reexamine our existing policies. Through this examination it has become evident it is necessary to revise our existing residency policy imposed on certain exempt employees. In the recent past, this policy has made it difficult to find and hire the right people positions requiring specific technical training and to retain employees.
Direct the City Attorney to draft a Resolution eliminating the residency requirement imposed upon certain exempt employees by Resolution 07-23. Additionally, direct the City Administrator to revise the residency language contained within the Exempt/Non-Union Employee Handbook.
Alderman Heiland made the following statement for the record:
"When this policy was adopted in 2006, Alderman Meredith and I worked very hard to compose this policy. We sent out drafts to the Aldermen and there was much discussion at the time. We asked for input and considered all the input we received. I still fully support this policy. The only thing that I could or even would change is that we did not submit a probationary period. Usually, the probationary period for an employee is 90 days. This is what most large companies use. After said probationary period ceases the Employee would still have 180 days to secure a home.
When a future employee applies for employment, it is very plainly explained that the residency policy is a part of the package. And yet, some have said yes, and took the position only to come back and say there are no homes that are suitable. I understand that if the person has a home to sell, that it is difficult, but that should have been considered also. Years ago, our forefathers worked on the government laws and put into play that Congressmen, Senators (both Federal and State), County Board members, and City Aldermen should be from the area that they are asking to be elected to. This was for a good reason. These elected officials make laws concerning taxes, levies, police and fire rules and too many other reasons to name. After we voted this policy in, I received many calls from residents in favor of it. There were no negative responses to me. Now just 2 years later there are some who want to eliminate this policy.
It has been said that we cannot get enough qualified applicants to live in East Moline. Does that mean that everyone living in East Moline is good enough to pay the wages, pay the taxes, and pay good insurance benefits and yet all those that apply do not want to pay all of this or do not think this City is a proper place to live.
We are here to promote our city and do the best we can for our residents and I fully believe that if we try hard, we will get applicants that will be glad to find a house in East Moline. By the way there are houses in East Moline from $4,000 to at least $400,000, so cost should be no problem. With the economy the way it is now there are thousands of executives looking for employment. Not only will it keep revenue in the City, but the citizens of East Moline can be assured that East Moline is the place to live and raise our children.
As of this date 10/20/08, 4 live in East Moline, 1 Coal Valley, 1 Silvis (now looking for a house in East Moline) 2 in Iowa 1 open without this policy we will probably have at least 2 more staff positions filled by those living outside of our city and who knows how many more. Moline and Bettendorf have a residency policy and Rock Island does not, but they advertise that anyone wishing a position must live in Rock Island. We constantly try and follow all codes in these cities, so what is different with this policy?
I object to withdrawing this policy and I bet if you ask our residents they would agree with me."
A lengthy discussion was held regarding this policy and the affect it could have on new employees and the impact on their families by being forced to move into the City not only the children changing schools but with both spouses working it is harder to require this of new employees. Discussion was also held that this policy only affects a small portion of the City employees.
A motion was made by Alderman Moreno, seconded by Alderman Bustos, to direct the City attorney to draft a resolution eliminating the residency requirement. Upon roll call the following voted in favor: Moreno, Bustos, Kelley. Against: Heiland, Puentes and Westbrook. Mayor Thodos voted in favor breaking the tie vote and Motion carried 4 – 3.
PURCHASING POLICY (Alderman Bustos / City Administrator Keehner)
In an effort to provide a more proactive bid solicitation for goods and services supplied to the City of East Moline and to ensure vendors located within East Moline are notified of bid solicitations it is being recommend to revise the East Moline East Moline purchasing policy to include language mandating that vendors located in the City of East Moline be notified of all appropriate bid solicitations.
Direct the City Administrator to revise the May 2000 East Moline purchasing policy include revised text which mandates the inclusion of East Moline vendors in all appropriate bid solicitations.
A motion was made by Alderman Moreno, seconded by Alderman Bustos, to concur with staff recommendation. Upon roll call the following voted in favor: Puentes, Moreno, Bustos, Kelley, Westbrook, and Heiland. Motion carried.
NO PARKING EXTENSION ON 7TH STREET @ 25TH AVENUE (Captain DeVrieze)
The current ordinance calls for no parking on 7th Street at 25th Avenue for the following distances: 51' north of 25th Avenue on the east side; 59' south on east side; and 56' south on west side. Alderman Bustos requested the Police Department to look into extending the no parking distance. It is often very difficult to see northbound and southbound traffic due to parked vehicles. If each area was extended at least an extra parking spot, this would allow for better visibility as well as a greater reaction time when pulling out onto 7th Street from 25th Avenue.
A change to the following distances would need to be adopted to meet this objective: 81'north of 25th Avenue on the east side; 80' north on west side; 82' south on east side; and 75' south on west side. The Police Department has met with residents of several of the houses affected by this change and none were in opposition. This intersection has not been historically problematic for accidents.
None. The will of the Council.
The cost of the paint and signs
A motion was made by Alderman Westbrook, seconded by Alderman Moreno, to request the City Attorney to draft the appropriate documents to make No Parking Extension changes. Upon roll call the following voted in favor: Heiland, Puentes, Moreno, Bustos, Kelley and Westbrook. Motion carried.
A motion was made by Alderman Westbrook, seconded by Alderman Puentes, to adjourn the Committee-of-the-Whole meeting. Upon roll call the following voted in favor: Puentes, Moreno, Bustos, Kelley, Westbrook, and Heiland. Motion carried. 9:12p.m.
Minutes taken and submitted by,
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