Norris City Council Minutes

Monday, October 10th, 2016

 

 

BE IT REMEMBERED THAT THE CITY OF NORRIS CITY COUNCIL MET IN REGULAR SESSION ON MONDAY, OCTOBER 10TH, 2016, AT 7:00 P.M. WITH THE FOLLOWING COUNCIL MEMBERS PRESENT:  JACK BLACK, BILL GRIEVE, YORK HAVERKAMP,

CHRIS MITCHELL, AND LORETTA PAINTER.   

 

 

The meeting was called to order by Mayor Mitchell. 

HEAR THE PUBLIC

Roger Bollinger, 43 West Circle Place, asked for an update of the pavilion ceiling fans project.  City Manager Hester reported $1,300 had been donated as of Oct 10, 2016.  Mayor Mitchell stated additional information pertaining to the fan options is on the agenda under old business.

Carlos Phillips, 136 Pine Road, asked about status of road repair work on Pine, Orchard, Dale, and Garden Roads.  City Manager Hester stated repair work would be completed later this year after the completion of the CDBG project on Sawmill Rd.  He reported this area of Pine and Orchard has a    history of sinking and a new method of injecting grout into the hole was completed during the summer.  City Manager Hester stated he was not aware of the problem on Dale and Garden and would look into this concern.

Phyllis Helton, 59 Dogwood Road, asked why the City was letting Covenant Life Church mow the city's property.  City Manager Hester stated the property they were mowing belongs to TDOT, not the city.  She expressed concerns that the church would cut down more trees and also stated she was against the sign they want to install. 

APPROVAL OF MINUTES

1.       The minutes of the September 12th, 2016 Council Meeting were presented for approval.   Motion was made by Vice Mayor Haverkamp to approve the minutes.   Motion was seconded by Council Member Black.   Motion carried by voice vote.

 

OLD BUSINESS

 

1.       Board and Commission Vacancies - None

 

 

 

2.       Tax Increment Financing for Potential Retail Projects - Anderson County Chamber of Commerce Attorney Mark Mamantov gave a brief overview of the Tax Increment Financing Policy.  He stated the proposed policy provides guidelines and does not require the city to participate.  City Manager Hester stated if anyone needed additional information pertaining to Tax Increment Financing, he has contact information for Janet and Mark with the Anderson County Chamber of Commerce.  Mayor Mitchell stated he does not feel we need to pursue at this time, but if there is a request in the future, we can pursue when a request is made.   After additional Council discussion, it was decided not to pursue Tax Increment Financing at this time. 

 

3.       Ridgeway Park Additions - City Manager Hester reported the additions were complete.    He also reported there is approximately $15,000 remaining from the gifted funds the city received from Norris Academy.   He stated the slide and swings at Eric Harold Park were in need of repair and wanted Council to consider using the funds for this park and also possible improvements to Oak Road Park.  Vice Mayor Haverkamp stated he will discuss this with Norris Academy and the Norris Recreation Committee.  Council will discuss this item more at the November 2016 Council meeting.  

 

4.       Fundraiser:  Ceiling Fans for Lions Pavilion - City Manager Hester reported $1,300 has been donated as of October 10th, 2016.  City Manager Hester reported the cost to install one large   commercial fan or six smaller fans would be approximately $5,000 for both options.   Council Member Black would like a firm plan in place in order to ask for donations.   A motion was made by Council Member Black to recommend the fund raising efforts be used to purchase six commercial fans for the Lions Club Pavilion.  The fans will be purchased and installed as soon as funds are raised to cover the purchase and installation.   Motion was seconded by Council Member Grieve.  Motion carried by voice vote.

 

5.        Health Insurance Renewal - City Manager Hester reported the City had received two quotes for the employee health insurance.  Quotes were received from United Healthcare and Blue Cross Blue Shield.  United Healthcare is the current carrier for the City and Norris Water Commission.  The monthly premium quoted from United Healthcare is $11,556 and the quote from BCBS is $12,392.  Humana was also asked to submit a quote, but no quote has been received as of today from Humana.   City Manager Hester noted we had allowed a 6% increase in the 2016-2017 budget for health insurance.  The United Healthcare quote was on budget and he recommended staying with United Healthcare thru 10-31-2017.  Motion was made by Vice Mayor Haverkamp to approve the health insurance renewal with United Healthcare.  Motion was seconded by Council Member Black.  Motion carried by voice vote.

 

 

 

 

6.       CITY MANAGER REPORT

  City Manager Hester reported on the following:

 

1)      2015 - 2016 Year to Date City Budget - Overall expenditures are on target to budget with 95% of 2016 property taxes collected, which is ahead of normal pace of collections.  Annual audit work has begun, and final financial reports will be available later this year.  Overall the City's financial health continues to be strong and the City is in good position for meeting current capital needs.   However, long term projections indicate that additional revenues and/or change in city services may be necessary in the next 1-3 years.

 

2)      2015 - 2016 Year to Date Water Budget - Overall, NWC operations budget is very tight, but expenses are below target to date.  Operations revenues are still slightly ahead of budget; however, we do expect water sales to decline with the onset of cooler weather.   City Manager Hester projects total water sales to be on budget for this year, but it is apparent that sewer sales will miss the budget by approximately $30,000.  We do have two expense items that will offset the current projected revenue shortfall.  The first is an unplanned savings of $33,000 as a result in a transition from the retirement of an existing employee to a new hire and a budgeted new position Oct. 1, 2016.  NWC has agreed to delay hiring until the budget detail was clearer.  Mayor Mitchell stated we had a negative position for FYI 2016 and we need to make sure we do not have a negative position for FYI 2017.

 

3)      Grant Updates

1)      T-21 Grant Opportunity - grant was awarded for $347,000 to extend the City sidewalk system to Highway 61.  This will require the City to provide match funds of approximately $120,000.  Engineer is proceeding with the Environmental Phase of the project.  The site survey has been modified, and we will be proceeding with easement acquisition in the upcoming weeks.

2)      Safe Routes to Schools Grant - SRTS is a federally funded program and 100% federally funded; no match is permitted.  We have begun the planning process for implementation.  We have received our signed contract from the State and TDOT is working on the environmental assessment; this has to be completed before any work can commence.  Vice Mayor Haverkamp stated he wanted to make it as safe as possible.   He also stated that Sharon Rollins with MTAS would look at Town Center and give recommendations.  City Manager Hester stated as this was an active grant it would be hard to make changes.  He stated he would send the grant documents to Sharon Rollins with MTAS for review.

3)      Oil Recycling Grant - An award has been made by TDEC for an oil recycling grant in the amount of $21,500.  This grant is 100% and requires no local match.  A supplier has been selected and plans are underway for installations to begin this summer.  Installation will begin this month.

4)      City Council Election - City Council two year terms end this year.  The next General Election is slated for November 8, 2016.

5)      Capital Purchase Update - A quote was obtained from the State of Tennessee purchasing contract for a new Public Works truck.  Council previously approved $15,000 from city reserves and $10,000 from watershed reserves.  The price for a 2017 Chevrolet 2,500 4 wheel drive truck is $26,371.16.  We plan to cover the difference of $1,371 from the Public Works part-time labor budget.    Mayor Mitchell asked if a budget amendment was needed.  City Manager Hester said no as he has the authority to transfer within a fund.

6)      Update of Watershed Resource Management Plan

A draft of the plan is now on the City's website for public review prior to its adoption.    The public is encouraged to attend future Watershed Board meetings and provide input.   Plan should be presented to Council very soon.

7)      See attached City Manager Report. 

 

 

NEW BUSINESS

 

7.       Budget Amendments  - none

 

8.       Resolution 7 - 2016 - A Resolution to Congratulate the Members of the Norris Middle School 2016 Volleyball Team and its Coaches and Staff was presented for approval.  Mayor Mitchell stated the resolution was to recognize the members coaches, and staff of the Norris Middle School Volleyball Team for recent victories in both the District and the East Sectional tournaments of the Tennessee Middle School Athletic Association.   Motion was made by Mayor Mitchell to approve Resolution 7-2016.  Motion was seconded by Council Member Grieve.  Motion carried by voice vote.

 

9.       Council Member Black recommended a draft copy of the City Council Minutes be posted on the City Website as soon as practical after the monthly Council Meeting.   He stated the current policy is to post the minutes on the City Website after the approval of the minutes.  Council Member Black stated by posting the draft minutes, it would give residents an opportunity to review the minutes before the approval.   Motion to approve posting of the draft minutes on the City Website as soon as practical after the meeting was made by Council Member Black.  Motion was seconded by Bill Grieve.  Motion carried by voice vote.

 

10.   Mayor Mitchell asked Council for questions or comments concerning accounts payable, minutes, and reports.  There were no questions or comments from Council. 

11.   Motion was made by Council Member Grieve to adjourn.  Motion was seconded by Council Member Black.   Motion carried by voice vote at 8:50 p.m.

 

 

TO:                        Norris City Council
FROM:                  Tim Hester                        

RE:                  City Manager's Report                       

DATE:             October 10, 2016

 

1.   2016-17 Year to Date (Estimated through September) CITY Budget.   Overall, YTD Expenditures are on target to budget.  95% of property tax has been collected, which is ahead of normal pace of collections.   Other key revenue categories such as State Sales Tax, Local Option Sales Tax, Wholesale Beer & Liquor Tax are on target to budget.  Annual audit work has begun, and final financial reports will be available later this year.   

Estimated 2015-16 Year End Undesignated CASH reserves finished at:

  1.  
    1. General Fund             $295,000 NOTE: This has increased by $25k due to higher than expected Hall Tax collections
    2. Watershed Fund         $175,311 ($26,779 of this is earmarked for future Rifle Range improvements)

Overall, the City's financial health continues to be strong, and the City is good position for meeting current capital needs such as equipment and road paving. However, long term projections indicate that additional revenues and/or change in city services may be necessary in the next 1-3 years.

  1. 2016-17 Year to Date (Estimated through September) Water Commission Budget.  Overall, NWC operations budget is very tight, but expenditures are below target to date.  Operations revenues are still slightly ahead of budget, however, we do expect water sales to decline with the onset of cooler weather.

I project total water sales to be on budget for the year, but it is apparent that sewer sales will miss the budget as we have now been below projected sewer revenues for 3 consecutive months.  I project sewer sales will be approximately $30k short of projected annual revenue.

We do have two expense items that will offset the current projected revenue shortfall.    The first is unplanned savings of $33k that has resulted in a transition from the retirement of an existing employee to a new hire. 

We also budgeted for a new position beginning October 1 that NWC agreed to delay hiring until the budget detail was clearer.   Should we delay this position until July 1, NWC would save an additional $40k in wages, health insurance, and retirement.

 

We will continue to monitor closely.

  1. Grant Updates.   
  1.  
    1. New Sidewalk Grant - grant was awarded for $347,000 to extend the City sidewalk system to Highway 61.  This will require the City to provide match funds of approximately $120,000.  TDOT reports that these types of projects typically take 2-3 years of prep work prior the project breaking ground.  Engineer is proceeding with the Environmental Phase of the project.   The site survey has been modified, and we will be proceeding with easement acquisition in the upcoming weeks.
    2. Safe Routes to Schools Grant.  Safe Routes to School (SRTS) is a federally funded program focusing on the benefits of children walking and biking to school. Its primary purpose is to encourage elementary and middle school children to safely walk and bicycle to school through infrastructure improvements, educational initiatives and promotional activities.  Projects and activities are 100% federally funded for the 2015 year; no match is permitted.   Our award of this grant was received and we have begun the planning process for implementation.   We have received our signed contract from the State and TDOT is working on the environmental assessment; this has to be completed before any work can commence.
    3. Oil Recycling Grant.   An award has been made by TDEC for an oil recycling grant in the amount of $21,500.   Grant request had been for $27,500, but grant funds will cover all planned work.   This grant is funded 100% and requires no local match.    A supplier has been selected and plans are underway for installations to begin this fall.  

 

  1. City Council Election.   City Council 2 year terms end this year.   The next General Election is slated for November 8, 2016.  The newly elected Council will take office at the first regularly scheduled meeting following the certification of the election.

 

  1. Health Insurance Renewal Rates.   We have received our renewal plan for employee health insurance and it is on budget.   Insurance renewal is in November.

 

  1. Capital Purchase Update.  A quote was obtained from the State of Tennessee purchasing contract for a new Public Works truck.   $25k was previously approved for this purchase by Council ($15k from City Reserves and $10k from Watershed reserves).  Price for a 2017 Chevrolet 2500 4 wheel drive truck is $26,371.16.   We plan to cover the difference of $1,371 from the Public Works part-time labor budget.

 

 

  1. Update of Watershed Resource Management Plan.   The Norris Watershed Board is working to update and revise the Resource Management Plan.   This plan addresses 3 major categories of activities in the Watershed: forest management, recreation, and water quality.   Public workshops were held in January, February, April, and May.   The plan will continue to be worked on and discussed at future meetings.  A draft of the plan is now on the City's website for public review.  The public is encouraged to attend future Watershed Board meetings and provide input to the Watershed Board regarding one of Norris' most important resources.