Norris City Council Minutes

Monday, April 9th, 2018

 

BE IT REMEMBERED THAT THE CITY OF NORRIS CITY COUNCIL MET IN REGULAR SESSION ON MONDAY, APRIL 9TH, 2018, AT 7:00 P.M. WITH THE FOLLOWING COUNCIL MEMBERS PRESENT:  LARRY BEEMAN, JACK BLACK, BILL GRIEVE,   

                    CHRIS MITCHELL AND LORETTA PAINTER. 

  

The meeting was called to order by Mayor Mitchell.

HEAR THE PUBLIC

Steve Williams with UT Lifestar (AirMedCare Network) briefly explained how Lifestar works.  Mr. Williams reported UT Lifestar offers a household memberships annual fee of $65 and which covers usage of Lifestar by all members of a household.  Mr. Williams stated he is reaching out to the community to inform people of the benefit of purchasing an annual membership with Lifestar.   Application information is available on the UT Lifestar website.

Park Ranger Mark Morgan, Norris Dam State Park, reported on improvements and renovations being made at the park in the near future.   The Norris Gristmill will undergo reconstruction to become operational again at a cost of $70,000, and the historic cabins will also be renovated.  Park Ranger Morgan reported the swimming pool will be open this year.  Morgan and Chuck Morris reported on trail work and the new equipment being ordered as a result of the 2016 RTP grant.

Joe Deatherage, 122 CCC Camp Road, congratulated City Manager Marshall on the completion of his first year with the City.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES

  1. The minutes of the March 5th, 2018 City Council Meeting were presented for approval.  Motion was made by Council Member Beeman to approve the minutes with one correction on page 3, new business 3 – Red Tree was changed to Redbud Trees.   Motion was seconded by Council Member Black.   Motion carried by voice vote. 

OLD BUSINESS 

  1. Board and Commission Vacancies - None 

NEW BUSINESS 

  1. Updated City Step Plan - City Manager Marshall presented an updated City Step Plan for approval.   The current Step Plan is a six Step Plan and the updated plan would be a 12 Step Plan.  City Manager Marshall noted the Step increases are given on merit as per the Personnel Policy.  City Manager also reported job descriptions had been completed for all full-time city positions.    Mayor Mitchell said he applauded the completion of the job descriptions but wanted to review the job descriptions and the updated Step Plan before making a decision.   City Manager Marshall noted the division of the Police and Fire Departments created the need to fill the positions of Lieutenant, Sergeant, and Detective.  The updated 12 Step Plan included this change in positions.     City Manager Marshall stated the 2018-2019 Budget includes the new Step Plan.  After Council discussion a motion was made by Mayor Mitchell to table the Step Plan until a future date.  Motion was seconded by Council Member Black.  Motion did not carry - all Council Members voted no.   A motion was made by Council Member Black to delay decision on the updated Step Plan until next meeting to give Council time to review the updated Step Plan and updated job descriptions.   Motion was seconded by Council Member Beeman.  Motion carried by voice vote.  

  1. City Manager Evaluation – City Manager Marshall has completed one year of service with the City (April 3, 2018).  Council Member Beeman stated City Manager Marshall was due to be evaluated in the near future.   Mayor Mitchell stated this could be done at this meeting or the next meeting. Motion was made by Council Member Beeman to complete City Manager Marshall’s evaluation   at the next Council Meeting.  Motion was seconded by Vice Mayor Painter.  Motion carried by voice vote.

     

  2. Correspondence – City Manager Marshall asked for any comments or questions concerning the letter and Using the Annual Budget Process to Decipher, “What Makes Norris, Norris?” from George and Susan Miceli.   There were no comments or questions from Council.

     

  3. City Buildings Report – City Manager Marshall presented a City of Norris Building Inspection Report.  He reported that he along with Council Member Black and George Miceli had inspected the Community Building, the Police/Fire Department, and the McNelley Building.  City Manager Marshall noted the inspection report details issues with each building.  Council Member Black stated the most efficient way to proceed is to let Public Works do the repairs, but he stated we may not have the expertise on staff to complete all the repairs.  Council Member Black stated a team of volunteers could be put together to do many of the repairs which would help the City.   Council Member Black suggested we come up with a plan to use volunteers to work on the repairs.   Mayor Mitchell asked if there was a barrier to engaging volunteers to help the City.  City Manager Marshall stated no; however, we would need to have the volunteers sign a waiver form to release liability. 

     

  4. Recreation Commission-  Recreation Commission Member Brianna Kibler, reported the Recreation Commission did a walk through in February 2018 of the three major City parks.  Ms. Kibler reported the commission made a list of issues pertaining to repairs and/or safety issues.  The four items that were generally low cost but high impact were specifically for Oak Road Park.    The items are:  1) Oak Road Pool maintenance on inside and outside of pool.  2)  Water fountain at Oak Road Park does not work if water to pool is turned off.   Mayor Mitchell stated he wanted Norris Water Superintendent Wilkerson involved in assessing this issue.  Mayor Mitchell stated he felt this was a fixable issue.  3)  Repair basketball court (new backboard, rims, stripe free throw and three-point lines by using some of the Recreation Grant money.  4)  Additional trash can near the Oak Road Park pavilion area.   Mayor Mitchell asked City Manager Marshall if we have recreation money available for the repair of the basketball court.  One other item Ms. Kibler reported on concerns ADA access ability issues at Eric Harold Park.   She stated we have handicap parking, a nice ramp up to the sidewalk, and a nice sidewalk, but we do not have ADA accessibility to the swings.    City Manager Marshall stated he was working with Public Works Director Hevel to correct this issue, but it is not the right time of the year to put down asphalt.    City Manager Marshall said as soon as weather conditions allows, additional mulch will be put down. 

8.    SRTS Contract – City Manager Marshall stated the City had applied for a SRTS Grant and we are currently at the potential design phase.  City Manager Marshall stated he had met with the engineer on Tuesday, April 3, 2018.  City Manager Marshall and the engineer were on a conference call to the State of Tennessee and they were informed the State requires any crossing that touches a non-ADA compliant sidewalk, the sidewalk will need to be redone to be ADA compliant.  City Manager Marshall stated the property was walked on Friday, April 6, 2018 looking for ways to stay in budget and also to try and accomplish the goals that were set out in the original grant proposal.  City Manager Marshall stated he did not know if the State’s ADA rules have changed since 2015, but right now they have very strict ADA rules for any contractor to move forward with proposals.  City Manager Marshall stated we will need to enter into an agreement with McGill and Associates as we are now at the design phase   He stated none of the previous work completed by McGill and Associates has been billed as it was needed in preparation of submitting the grant.  He also stated as we are now at the design phase, we will need to enter into a contract with McGill and Associates.  Under the grant, $11,158 is covered for engineering and we also have a timeline to finish certain steps by June 30, 2018.   City Manager Marshall stated if the City is moving forward with the Safe Routes to School Grant, we have to enter into a contract with McGill and Assiociates to go to the next step.  Mayor Mitchell stated he is extremely supportive of the grant and the safety of the children is very important.   Mayor Mitchell stated he is supportive of making the changes to the grant with the priorities being determined by the school.  Mayor Mitchell stated he would rather get 80% of what we want than nothing.  Mayor Mitchell stated there may possibly be financial exposure to the City and the Council had been told originally the grant was a 100% grant.  Mayor Mitchell stated there is a risk if we do not meet the deadline.  Mayor Mitchell stated the City should not be in this position and these issues should have been resolved in November 2017.  Mayor Mitchell stated we are looking at signing a contract that puts the City in financial exposure.   Mayor Mitchell stated if we authorize City Manager Marshall to proceed and we miss the deadline, the City should not transfer the money from the fund balance.  If the deadline is missed, City Manager Marshall would have to find money within the budget to fund the exposure.   Mayor Mitchell stated this is a self-inflected pain; the engineer was not responsive and will not take the exposure.  Mayor Mitchell stated if the City Manager thinks it can be done and he is willing to take the exposure to the budget, then he is supportive.   Mayor Mitchell also stated the school is not in a position to cover the City’s exposure.   City Manager Marshall stated the exposure would cover more than one fiscal year.  Motion was made by Mayor Mitchell to approve the contract ($11,158) with McGill and Associates for engineering expenses for the Safe Route to Schools Grant within budget and zero funding from the City Budget and with the condition that City Manager Marshall not sign the contract unless he thinks the deadline can be met.   Motion was seconded Council Member Beeman.   Motion carried by voice vote.

 

9.    Budget Amendment – City Manager Marshall presented the following Budget Amendment for                                                      

       approval.   

 

Increase

Description

Amount

General Fund  - 110

 

 

110-42000-261

Police Dept. – Repair and Maintenance

      10,000.00

110-43000-268

Public Works - Repair and Maint. Roads and Streets*

        2,000.00

110-43000-269

Public Works – Repair and Maint. Other Repairs*

        4,000.00

 

Total

      16,000.00

  

Decrease Code:

Description

Amount

General Fund - 110

 

 

110-42000-114

Part-time Personnel

    10,000.00

110-27000

Fund Balance

      6,000.00

 

Total

    16,000.00

 

Motion was made by Vice Mayor Painter to approve the budget amendments.  Motion was seconded by Council Member Black.  Motion carried by voice vote.

 

10.  CITY MANAGER REPORT

City Manager Marshall reported on the following: 

  1. 2017-2018 Year to Date City Budget -  Overall YTD Expenditures are on target to budget.  98% of property taxes have been collected.  Other key revenue categories such as State Sales Tax, Local Option Sales Tax, Wholesale Beer and Liquor Tax are on target to budget.  

    Overall the City’s current financial health continues to be strong, and the City is in good position for meeting current year 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.

     

  2. 2017-2018 Year to Date Water Budget -  Overall, NWC operations budget remains tight, with no changes to report from previous months.  Revenue from metered water and sewer sales are at 81%.  Unlike the city, however, their income comes in more incrementally throughout the year.   Expenses are a 72% for Water and Sewer.

  3. Grant Updates

  1.  
    1. New Sidewalk Grant – Currently in continual contact with the Local Programs Office and our engineering firm.  They have stated that we are on target to meet our deadlines for this project.

    2. Safe Routes to Schools Grant –  Conference call was held with engineering firm and the State of Tennessee which stated they will require sidewalks that are not ADA compliant to be brought up to compliance at the crossings.  This would be a

      significant increase in the scope of work with little increase in funding.  Currently working with engineer to resubmit plans that would keep the project on track financially.

4. Recreation – The Recreation Commission has completed a list of items that would like to see fixed at our parks.  Many of these items were already on our list of park improvements and others are good ideas for the spending of the Norris Academy donation.  City Manager Marshall recommended Council approve an expenditure up to $4,000 for improvements to the basketball courts at Oak Road Park.  Motion was made by Vice Mayor Painter to approve the $4,000 expenditure request.  Motion was seconded by Council Member Beeman.  Motion carried by voice vote.

 

 5.  See attached City Manager Report. 

 

11.  Mayor Mitchell stated at the last council meeting there was a discussion about a freeze on hiring employees.  Mayor Mitchell stated he has communications from MTAS and it is proper to make this motion.   Mayor Mitchell made a motion to place a freeze on hiring of full-time employees.  He stated this does not affect the Water and Sewer Dept. because they are a separate board nor seasonal or part-time workers.   Council Member Beeman stated he feels Council is primarily a policy making body and not a city management body and he feels the motion is going beyond the responsibilities of Council.   After discussion, the motion failed for lack of second.

 

12.  Accounts Payable, Minutes, and Reports - Mayor Mitchell asked Council for questions or comments concerning accounts payable, minutes, and/or reports.   No. questions or comments were made.

 

13.  Motion was made by Vice Mayor Painter to adjourn.  Motion was seconded by Council Member Grieve Painter.  Motion carried by voice vote at 9:30 p.m.

 

 

 

_____________________________________                        _____________________________________

Matthew Marshall, City Manager                                                  Janet Parks, City Recorder

 

 

TO:                       Norris City Council                                      
FROM:                 Matthew Marshall                        

RE:                  City Manager’s Report                     

DATE:             April 6, 2018

 

1.   2017-18 Year to Date (Estimated through January) CITY Budget.   Overall, YTD     Expenditures are on target to budget.  98% of property tax has been collected.   Other key revenue categories such as State Sales Tax, Local Option Sales Tax, and Wholesale Beer & Liquor Tax are on target to budget. 

2. Overall, the City’s current year financial health continues to be strong, and the City is in good position for meeting current year 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.

2017-18 Year to Date (Estimated through November) Water Commission Budget.  Overall, NWC operations budget remain tight, with no changes to report from previous months.   Revenue from metered water sales and sewer sales are at 81%. Unlike the city however their income comes in more incrementally throughout the year.  Expenses are at 72% for Water and Sewer.

3. Grant Updates.   

a.   New Sidewalk Grant.  I have been in continual contact with the Local Programs    Office and our engineering firm.  They have stated that we are on target to meet our deadlines for this project.

b.   Safe Routes to Schools Grant.  I have had a conference call with our engineering               firm and the state of Tennessee.  They have stated that they will require sidewalks that are not ADA compliant to be brought up to compliance at the crossings.  This would be a significant increase in the scope of work with little increase in funding.  I am working with our engineer to resubmit plans that would keep the project on track financially. 

4.  Recreation The recreation commission has completed a list of items they would like to see fixed at our parks.  Many of these items were already on our list of park improvements and others are good ideas for the spending of the Norris Academy’s donations.  I am asking council to approve an expenditure of up to $4,000 for improvements to the basketball courts at Oak Park.