Norris City Council Minutes

Monday, May 14, 2018

 

  

BE IT REMEMBERED THAT THE CITY OF NORRIS CITY COUNCIL MET IN REGULAR SESSION ON MONDAY, MAY 14TH, 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

No comments from the public.

APPROVAL OF MINUTES

  1. The minutes of the April 9th, 2018 City Council Meeting were presented for approval.  Motion was made by Council Member Grieve to approve the minutes with one correction on page 6, item 13 – remove Painter from approval line.  Motion was seconded by Vice Mayor Painter.   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.  He noted the Step Plan was presented last month and had been rescheduled to the May meeting.     City Manager Marshall noted the Step Plans along with job descriptions for all full-time employees had been sent to Council for their review.  The proposed Step Plan includes categories for Police Lieutenant, Sergeant, Detective, and Light Equipment Operator II not on the current six Step Plan.  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 would not be automatic and would be given on merit as per the Personnel Policy.  City Manager Marshall asked Council to approve the new Step Plan in order to pay employees at the title they are and at the rate they should have.   Vice Mayor Painter stated she liked adding job descriptions and the City needs to invest in our employees for what they do, but she had concerns because the City pays for family medical coverage and the City has no control over that cost.  Vice Mayor Painter stated she wished we could reallocate the way we invest in our employees and invest in our employees for what they do.  She stated it is hard to have the 12 Step Plan when you take into account the medical insurance cost.  Vice Mayor Painter stated a Police Detective that is single could have a lower total salary plan with benefits than a Police Officer with family coverage.  City Manager Marshall noted the City has taken steps to address this with the change to the Personnel Policy earlier this year.  Effective March 1, 2018, the City will provide single medical insurance for new hires and all other plans the employee will be required to pay 15% of the medical insurance coverage.  Mayor Mitchell asked if anyone at the City of Norris has ever had a Step decrease.   City Manager Marshall stated he did not know if that had ever occurred.  Mayor Mitchell asked Norris Water Commission Superintendent Tony Wilkerson the same question and he stated he had never seen a Step decrease done.  Mayor Mitchell stated he was supportive of the additional job descriptions on the Step Plan and paying regardless of how long someone has worked for the City.  Mayor Mitchell stated if an employee is doing more and better they should be rewarded and this would be done through bonuses over time, not Step increases.  Mayor Mitchell stated he has spoken to MTAS and that is an approach that is very accepted outside government and is getting accepted and encouraged by MTAS.  City Manager Marshall stated some cities have step plans, salary ranges, or merit increases based on job performance. 

     

    A motion was made by Mayor Mitchell to approve the new Step Plan 1-6 with additional job titles.

    Mayor Mitchell stated by approving Steps 1 – 12 it is establishing a very large budget impact that will never get undone and it is a very large change that doubles the number of steps in one motion.  Council Member Black asked if limiting the steps would not increase turnover.  Mayor Mitchell stated no based on what he wants to do with bonuses.  The motion failed for lack of second. 

     

    A motion was made by Council Member Black to approve the Step Pay scale 1-12 as presented.

    Motion failed for lack of motion.

     

    A motion was made by Council Member Beeman to table the Step approval until the next Council meeting.  Motion failed for lack of motion.

     

    A motion was made by Mayor Mitchell to approve the addition of one step to each current position (Step Plan 1-7 of the Proposed Step 1-12 Plan) and add the new positions of Lieutenant, Sergeant, Detective and Light Equipment Operator II.  Motion was seconded by Vice Mayor Painter.  Voting in favor of motion:  Mitchell, Painter, and Grieve.  Voting against the motion:  Beeman and Black.   

 

4.    Cell Tower Contract City Manager Marshall presented a new contract on the cell tower in the

        Watershed.  City Manager Marshall reported the contract was approved by the Norris Watershed          

        Board and would need to be reviewed by the City Attorney before signing.   Motion was

 made by Council Member Beeman to approve the cell tower contract contingent on review and   approval of the City Attorney.  Motion was seconded by Vice Mayor Painter.  Motion carried by      voice vote.                                       

 

  1. Surplus of City Property City Manager Marshall requested approval to surplus three pieces of City equipment.  The items are as follows:  leaf machine, salt spreader, and mower.   Motion was made by Council Member Beeman to approve surplusing the equipment as requested.  Motion was seconded by Council Member Grieve.  Motion carried by voice vote.   

     

  2. Resolutions 3 TCRS 401K and Resolution 4 TCRS 457B  Resolution 3 TCRS 401K authorizing City of Norris employees hired after October 2018 to participate in a TCRS 401K Plan and Resolution 4 TCRS 457B authorizing City of Norris employees hired after October 2018 to participate in a 457B  were presented for approval.  An employer participating in the Tennessee Consolidated Retirement System to change from its existing regular defined benefit plan to either the alternate defined benefit plan or the local government hybrid plan was presented for approval by City Manager Marshall.   City Manager Marshall said the resolution is required by TCRS and must go into effect on the first day of any quarter following a six-month notice to TCRS.  City Manager Marshall stated this resolution does not affect current employees.  Motion was made by Council Member Beeman to approve Resolution 3 -2018 and Resolution 4-2018.  Motion was seconded by Council Member Black.  Motion carried by voice vote.

     

  3. Ordinance 608 – 2018 – 2019 Budget – First Reading - City Manager Marshall presented the 2018-2019 Budget Ordinance for approval.    Council Member Black stated it is a balanced budget.  Council Member Black stated over the last four years he has recommended having small property tax increases to start saving money for future years and this has not occurred over the last years of serving on Council.    Council Member Black does not want a large tax increase in the future to cover shortfalls or go to the budget to see what we can be cut.   Mayor Mitchell stated he believes the budget is not balanced and we are borrowing money in addition to what the grants are and we are actually funding some of the capital outlay with the loan funds.  City Manager Marshall stated the loan amount is more than the construction amount due to the amount of the project already paid over the last two years from fund balance and grant expenditures not covered under the grant; and is reimbursing the general fund.    Mayor Mitchell stated he did not feel there is an urgency this year to raise property taxes.     Mayor Mitchell asked for clarification concerning the increase of the fire hydrant charge in the budget.    Norris Water Commission Superintendent Wilkerson stated there are currently 128 fire hydrants and with the maintenance and labor costs increasing over the year, it was necessary to raise the fire hydrant charge from $8,800 to $12,200 to cover the costs of replacing existing hydrants.  Motion was made by Council Member Beeman to approve the Ordinance 608 on first reading.  Motion was seconded by Council Member Grieve.  Mayor Mitchell stated he will support the budget but is still very stressed about the two projects – Sidewalk Grant and Safe Route to School Grant.  Mayor Mitchell stated to keep in mind if we approve the budget and we miss the deadline, there can be consequences to the budget.  Mayor Mitchell stated he was very disappointed the grants did not accomplish the goals.  Voting for:  Beeman, Grieve, Painter, and Mitchell.   Voting against:  Black.

     

8.    Change Public Hearing Notice -   City Manager Marshall requested the date of the 2018-2019 Budget Ordinance Public Hearing be changed from June 4, 2018 to Monday, June 11, 2018 at    6:00 p.m.   Motion was made by Council Member Beeman to approve the Public Hearing be changed to Monday, June 11, 2018 a 6:00 p.m.  Motion was seconded by Vice Mayor Painter.  Motion carried by voice vote.

 

9.    Correspondence – Patricia Duerksen -  City Manager Marshall presented a letter from Patricia Duerksen concerning a donation of property located at 23 East Norris Road.   After Council discussion, a motion was made by Council Member Black to not accept the property donation.  Motion was seconded by Vice Mayor Painter.  Motion carried by voice vote.

 

10.  City Manager Evaluation -  Council gave reviews of City Manager Marshall.  Council Member Beeman gave an above average rating, Council Member Black gave an above average rating, Council Member Grieve gave an above average rating, Vice Mayor Painter gave an outstanding rating, and Mayor Mitchell stated City Manager Marshall has his support and gives feedback on a regular basis.  After Council discussion, a motion was made by Council Member Beeman to approve a 2% merit increase plus a 1% COLA and a quarterly vehicle expense of $250.  Motion was seconded by Council Member Grieve.  Motion carried by voice vote.

 

11.  Budget Amendment – None                                                 

 

 

12.   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 89%.  Unlike the city, however, their income comes in more incrementally throughout the year.   Expenses are 78% for Water and Sewer.

     

  3. Grant Updates

  1.  
    1. New Sidewalk Grant – Been in continual contact with the Local Programs and engineering firm.  Our firm is working on the bid packets and we are attempting to meet our goals and deadlines.  If the state does not pass the project through its projected timeline we will need to re-apply for this grant.

b)     Safe Routes to Schools Grant  The State of Tennessee has agreed to our change in              

scope of work for this project and the grant is being tracked daily in order to                         meet our goals and deadlines.

 

  1. Recreation – We have completed many of the items on the Recreation Commission’s list and are ordering the basketball goals and paint for Oak Road Park.  We have conducted interviews for our seasonal recreation employees and are looking forward to offering the program this year.

     

  2. See attached City Manager Report. 

 

13.  Anderson Co. 911 -  Fire Chief Scott Hackler updated Council on the Fire Department switch to Anderson County 911 for dispatch calls.  Fire Chief Hackler noted the only cost to the Fire Department will be updating radios to use the county frequency.

 

14.  Pine Road Traffic Issue - Council Member Larry Beeman requested the Pine Road issue be on the June Agenda for Council discussion.

 

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 Council Member Grieve to adjourn.  Motion was seconded by Vice Mayor Painter.  Motion carried by voice vote at 10:05 p.m.

 

 

_____________________________________                        _____________________________________

Matthew Marshall, City Manager                                                  Janet Parks, City Recorder

 

TO:                       Norris City Council                                      
FROM:                 Matthew Marshall                        

RE:                  City Manager’s Report                     

DATE:             May 9, 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. 

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.

  1. 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 in on target at 89%. Unlike the city however their income comes in more incrementally throughout the year.  Expenses are at 78% for Water and Sewer.

     

    3.   Grant Updates.   

  1. New Sidewalk Grant.  I have been in continual contact with the Local Programs Office and our engineering firm.  Our firm is working on the bid packets and we are attempting to meet our goals and deadlines.  If the state does not pass the project through its projected timeline we will need to re-apply for this grant.

     

  2. Safe Routes to Schools Grant.  The state of Tennessee has agreed to our change in scope of work for this project and the grant is being tracked daily in order to meet our goals and deadlines. 

     

  1. Recreation We have completed many of the items on the Recreation commission’s list and are ordering the Basketball Goals and paint for oak road park.  We have conducted interviews for our seasonal recreation employees and are looking forward to offering that program this year.