Finance Caucus - May 4th 2015

MINUTES OF THE
FINANCE CAUCUS COMMITTEE MEETING
Monday, May 4, 2015 – 7:15 p.m.
Main Conference Room
Mayfield Village Civic Center

The Finance Caucus Committee meeting was held on May 4, 2015 in the Main Conference Room at Mayfield Village Civic Center.  Mr. Saponaro called the meeting to order at 7:15 p.m.

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Present: Mr. Saponaro, Mr. Marquardt and Dr. Parker

Also Present: Mrs. Mills, Mr. Jerome, Mr. Wynne, Lieutenant Jablonski, Mr. Metzung, Chief Carcioppolo, Mr. DiNardo, Mr. Cappello, Mr. Thomas, and Mrs. Betsa

1. 2015 Road Program

Mr. Wynne reported, Council has already given the okay to go out to bid on the road program.  We are doing Glenview, Bonnieview, Beech Hill road surface and waterlines. Part of the discussion has been the possibilities of widening the road. The Fire Chief chimed in that it would be something that might be helpful for the vehicles. The engineer prepared an estimate. For us to go from 18-22 feet, we would be looking at adding $500,000 to the road program.

Mr. Saponaro asked, for all of those streets?

Mr. Wynne replied, yes. The engineer is getting the specs ready to go out to bid. We wanted to find out if it is even worthwhile going through the exercise of including in the bid package all that is necessary for the widening piece of it knowing that we are looking at adding that kind of dollar amount to the road program.

Mr. Marquardt asked, what is the total amount now?

Mr. Wynne replied, the budget for this year is $2.5 million.

Dr. Parker asked, what would that do to the swale?

Mr. Cappello replied, we would have to move the swale.

Mr. DiNardo asked, what if you went one foot on each side, it doesn’t work?

Mr. Cappello replied, economically, the cost is not necessarily the material that is in there.  It’s the actual construction.   We would have to do it wider and actually go into the existing pavement a little bit to be able to get a machine in there to make sure it works well.

Mr. Marquardt asked, what would a four feet do as far as traffic? What is the effect?

Mr. Jerome added, for pedestrians too it would help.

Mr. Cappello replied, the thing to remember here is these are side streets. Realistically, there are no through-streets. You can’t get to Wilson Mills.  The wider the road, obviously it helps pedestrians. The funny thing about it is, with all this new environmental stormwater, they talk about low impact development. Subdivisions like this, they only want it to be 18 foot wide.  We could try it as part of this program. If we don’t widen it, we can try to put a little bit more of a stone berm on there.  Either way, I am replacing the aprons.  I can do some ditchwork. Again, it is going to get complicated. We are looking at $500,000.

Mr. Wynne added, the overall opinion is that because of the aggressiveness of our capital budget this year, with $2.5 million for the road program, what we are looking at with the Community Room, the sewer project, the drainage issues we are dealing with on Beta Drive, to put another $500,000 into the budget would be pretty significant.

Mr. Marquardt stated, on the other hand, you will never get another chance to do it.

Mr. Saponaro asked, from the police’s perspective, do you have an opinion on this?

Lieutenant Jablonski stated, this is the first I am hearing this since I am sitting in for the Chief. Actually, the wider the road, the safer it is. 

Dr. Parker asked, do they already need to be digging where the waterlines are?

Mr. Cappello replied, no.  The existing waterlines are under the edge of the road.  Where I am replacing it is behind, out of the roadway.  I am getting the waterline out of the road so that if it does break, we are not having these patches.  We are moving it in two locations. The one location, Glenview, we actually have to move to the other side of the street because I can’t put it in. There are power poles and gas lines. Bonnieview is on the same side but closer to people’s property. Beech Hill I will put back where it’s at. We will use a temporary waterline. It’s in the ditch.  I have really no room to go from here to there.

Mr. Saponaro asked, Gino, from Fire’s perspective?  Obviously a wider road certainly makes it easier for emergency vehicles?

Chief Carcioppolo replied, yes.  There’s no statutory requirement that involves that. It’s more on commercial properties.   The Fire Code requires 18 feet for access roads.  Like we said, the wider the road, the better.  Our large apparatus, are 128 inches mirror to mirror so you are looking at 10 foot 8 inches. There’s parts of the road now that are 17.5.  I would say, how many times have we had a fire there?   Realistically, I don’t remember us having an uncoordinated fire. We did do a training fire there.

Mr. Saponaro asked, because the only access out is on to SOM Center, you can’t go the back way, having the roads be narrower does that pose more of a safety issue?

Mr. Cappello replied, it’s not like a dead end street.  If Glenview is blocked, I can go down to Beech Hill and go to Seneca or Bonnieview.

Mr. Saponaro stated, I understand. But if SOM Center is the issue, in that area in front of those streets, there’s no place for them to go. In the unlikely event there’s a problem, they are locked into that area, it’s going to be harder for them to get in and out because the only place to get in and out is the top of their streets on to SOM Center. There’s no other access, right?

Chief Carcioppolo replied, if we had a real incident there, that street would be shut down for a long time.

Mr. Saponaro replied, right. But what I am talking about doesn’t really matter because you are still blocked.  I am just trying to come up with something that would make sense.  It is a lot of money.

Mr. Metzung stated, if there’s a fire, you are closing the street anyway. 

Mrs. Mills stated, if you talked to the residents on Seneca, they would have preferred to have their street be wider. When you get a school bus and a car is on the other side you can’t hardly pass. 

Mr. Saponaro stated, two points were made. We have to take heed of what Ron is saying. We are being aggressive with our capital budget.

Mr. Cappello stated, whatever you guys decide, either way.  You have to look at traffic volume.  This is a local residential street. What is the average daily traffic?  It’s probably less than 400 cars a day up and down the street.  Is wider safer?  Sure. There’s no question.  Is now the time to do it than later?  Yes. 

Mr. Saponaro asked, Doug, what about maintaining the road with snowplowing, things of that nature?  Does this help you?  No impact?

Mr. Metzung replied, no impact.

Mr. Cappello asked, have there ever been incidents of people having to get pulled out of the ditch?

Mr. DiNardo replied, very rarely.  There’s been a few.  Mirrors knocking out mailboxes, I see a lot of that every year.

Mr. Saponaro stated, Tom, you brought up a good point about if you are looking at it from an eco standpoint, you are building 18 inch not the 22 because you are trying to get rid of all the impervious.

Mr. Cappello stated, also narrow streets do cause people to go slower.

Mrs. Mills disagreed.  Also, if you pull out of a driveway and there’s a car parked back there, you could easily hit it.

Mr. DiNardo agreed. That’s the problem on every one of those streets.  That’s a good point.

Mr. Jerome stated, my street is no different.  We always have problems.  I have a bigger vehicle, but when there’s snow on the sides, it just gets narrower and narrower.  It’s hard to pass in the winter.

Mr. Marquardt asked, can you bid it as an option?

Mr. Saponaro agreed. So we can discuss it more?

Mr. Metzung replied, then he has to go through the exercise of designing it.

Mr. Wynne stated, knowing what the cost is we would want him to go through the exercise so we can bid it as an alternate but to go through all the work it would be hard to do that if we are not willing to spend that kind of money when it comes down to it.

Mr. Cappello asked, can it be done?  Sure.

Mr. Saponaro asked, so what is the cost of doing an alternate bid?

Mr. Cappello replied, I would have to get back to you on that.  I guess I just need some direction.  If you want it as an alternate, I would have to come up with something.

Mr. Saponaro stated, I certainly understand.  What’s everyone’s thought on this?  If it is something we think we don’t want to move forward on it, I agree we shouldn’t spend money on the engineering to come up with the bid specs for it. On the other hand, if everyone’s on the fence-

Mr. Marquardt stated, I am not against it.

Dr. Parker replied, I would like to know what our engineering costs are.  Obviously you are not moving any waterlines.  It’s still the same road basically, you are just widening it.

Mr. Cappello replied, you are widening it, but you have to move every drive pipe 2 more feet.  Other possibilities is to make the culverts more of a ditch.  Some of these yards, depending on the grading are a little higher.  There are complications. It’s not undoable by any means.  It’s not as easy as widening the road.

Mr. Metzung agreed. There are utility pole issues too.

Mr. Saponaro stated, we are talking the addendum is going to cost the Village for you to put the spec together, $10-15,000?

Mr. Cappello replied, if you do it based on construction costs, there’s a percent in the contract.  You are probably looking at $20,000-30,000 depending.

Mr. Saponaro asked, you do the alternate bid and whether we do it or not, that’s the fee to do the alternate bid?

Mr. Cappello replied, if you go with the alternate, then the fee is covered.  If you don’t go with the alternate, then I went through the whole process of developing an extra set of plans.  It’s not going to necessarily be the easiest thing.  I can look into it to see if I can do it any cheaper.

Mr. Saponaro stated, I just want to understand how the process works.

Mr. Wynne asked, from a timing standpoint, for the alternate set of plans, how long will that take?

Mr. Cappello replied, it might push us a little further. We are doing cold in place recycling. We have to get all that work done by, rule of thumb, end of September.  As it is now, I have to get this through the water department, which right now is not the most user-friendly. They have gone through major transition in their engineering department. 

Mr. Saponaro asked, if we put this on the capital budget for next year, your thought process is it’s not going to be $500,000, now it would be more because we don’t have everything we have?

Mr. Cappello replied, no, if you decide to widen it, the price is the price, it’s the construction costs.  There would be no alternate and you would just go with the widening.  If that’s what you are saying you want to do.

Mr. Saponaro stated, no, what I am saying is if we decided to wait what are we losing?  If we do the engineering and we don’t go through, we are losing potentially $20,000-30,000.  If we do it next year, what are we losing?

Mr. Cappello replied, it would be a little more expensive, but not crazy. When we did Seneca, we did the water main first. The year after we did the roadway.  We cut everyone’s apron to put the waterline in. We put temporary back.  The idea here is if you didn’t want to do this, I would shoot to try to get it done this year.  Worst case scenario, it makes the road part flow into next year.

Mr. Jerome asked, what about splitting the project in half?  Doing two streets one year and the other two the next?

Mr. Cappello replied, no, just do them all.  It’s not going to save you. You are going to want to put in there if they can’t get it done by a certain time, does it go into the next year?  The only thing with that is you have to include some temporary patching for the driveway.

Mr. Saponaro stated, we go through the process of looking at budgetary items very seriously. We talk about it. We go through it. We look at it. We approve it.  I don’t think it’s a bad idea. But if we didn’t approve it and put it in the capital budget, it’s not $100,000 item here which is still a lot. It’s at least a half a million and you know it’s going to be more than that.  There’s going to be something that happens and it’s going to increase it.  Now we have just put stresser on an already-aggressive budget.  That concerns me.  It needs to be scheduled.  If everyone’s in agreement with it, yes it should become a capital project.  I don’t know if you take it and you split that part of it, not streetwise, but that part of it, bid the whole thing and say this part is going to be done this year, but I don’t know if you can do it like that.

Mr. Marquardt asked, why don’t you come up with the cost of engineering if we didn’t go with the widening option for the next meeting?

Mr. Cappello replied, I have to look at the contract.  You are probably looking at $25,000-30,000.

Mr. Saponaro stated, the number for the project has to include everything in the project. We need to know if you are going to do it, this is the number. 

Mr. Metzung stated, the question is, Tom, were they willing to spend the $500,000 before you went through the exercise?  They are telling you we are interested enough to do the exercise.

Mr. Marquardt stated, what’s it going to cost you.

Mr. Cappello replied, if it is based on the contract, it would be 5-6% of the difference. Again, it’s ballpark.  It’s probably going to be close to, let’s say $30,000 to add another $500,000 of construction.  I am throwing a contingency in there anyway.  We have power poles, especially in Glenview that are going to have to get relocated.

Mr. Saponaro asked, so are we saying $500,000?

Mr. Cappello replied, say $530,000.

Mr. Saponaro stated, okay. So say $550,000 with whatever else is going to be thrown in there.

Mr. Cappello stated, so can I include an add alternate for the widening? Yes.

Mr. Saponaro replied, you can do it, but if you do it, it’s going to cost $25,000-30,000?

Mr. Cappello replied, yes.

Mr. Saponaro stated, either way it’s going to cost that.

Mr. Marquardt stated, so, let’s just make a decision next time.

Mr. Saponaro stated, on the agenda we will determine if we want to have them do the alternate knowing what the cost would be for the engineering which we believe is 5-6% of the proposal.

2. Update on 6826 Meadowood Drive

Mr. Wynne reported, we spoke to you a couple months ago and mentioned our plans at that point in time. We had the house appraised for $110,000, significantly below comparables by about $60,000-70,000.  We budgeted to put $40,000 into it which was $20,000 for a new roof and the other $10,000 for cosmetic necessary fix-up items and then we were going to probably spend $10,000 to connect the house to the new sewerline. We were not going to assess that parcel the $10,000 for the sewer assessment to make it more attractive. We were looking at a house we would be able to put on the market for $150,000 with comparables and in that neighborhood of around $180,000.  At the last public meeting we had with the residents that are having the sewer conversion done this was laid out to them, our concern about selling a home in their neighborhood significantly below value and to get their thoughts. There was a lot of discussion on it.  The Mayor, when he gave his presentation, said that this is kind of what we are looking at to create a house that’s still really below standard for your neighborhood. Another alternative would be to demolish the home.  What also makes the house unattractive from a resale standpoint is the easement we have that goes along the side of the house to get to the pump station.  The Mayor laid that all out to the residents at the meeting and threw out the possibility of an option to level it and make it more of a park-like type setting with greenspace and trees.  While there was no dialogue on it, there was head nodding which seemed to make us think they were leaning in the direction of demolishing the house.

Mrs. Mills replied, they were in favor. They clapped. They liked that.

Mr. Wynne asked, have you talked to anybody since then?

Mrs. Mills replied, after the meeting I did. They were very pleased.  It seemed like they thought it was a done deal; that we were going to take it down. That pleased them. It would be like a park like setting and would be better than having the house sit.

Mr. Saponaro asked, what is the cost of the demolishing roughly, do we know?

Mr. Cappello replied, about $10,000.

Mr. Wynne added, if we were to do it, it would be done by the same company that is in there doing the sewer line right now.

Mr. Jerome asked, what did we pay for this house?

Mr. Wynne replied, I do not know. I would have to look that up.

Mr. Marquardt asked, it was $10,000 to demolish?

Mr. Cappello replied, roughly $10,000. 

Mr. Marquardt asked, and how much is the improvements?

Mr. Wynne replied, it would be $30,000 cash out of pocket and the other $10,000 we would forego over the next 20 years with the sewer assessment.

Mr. Marquardt asked, how much would we get for it?

Mr. Wynne replied, we would probably net between $100,000-110,000.

Mr. Saponaro stated, I don’t generally like demolishing homes, especially if there’s a tax base to them. We are making the Village smaller when we do that kind of thing where we are taking income earners out of the Village. We have to look at it strategically.  Leveling to create certain pocket part kind of things is one thing, but I think we could get more money out of it and get a bigger bang for our buck but also have property taxes paid for which we won’t then have to pay upkeep.  I understand the residents might like the greenspace, but I think we have to look at it from both sides.

Mr. Marquardt asked, is the lot desirable?

Mrs. Mills replied, the problem with that lot is the houses as Eastgate comes down into Meadowood on that end, it seems that particular house always had water problems.

Mr. Jerome stated, at least one, maybe two, residents on Ravine are not happy about the whole project. They are definitely concerned.  They don’t want a trail connecting Ravine and Meadowood.

Mr. Saponaro asked, Bill, Steve, what do you think?

Mr. Marquardt replied, I don’t know how marketable the property is.  I am not ready to make a decision on it.

3. 6434 Highland Road Rental Agreement

Mr. Wynne reported, we have a new tenant for this house.  They are moving in at the end of the month. We will have legislation and lease agreement for your approval at the Council meeting.

Mrs. Mills asked, what are you renting it for?

Mr. Wynne replied, $1,200 a month.

Dr. Parker asked, one year?

Mr. Wynne replied, we do all our leases month to month so if we decide we want to do something with the property, we have the flexibility.

Mr. Jerome asked, why do we own the house?

Mr. Saponaro replied, part of the trail.

Mrs. Mills added, there’s wires there from the Illuminating Company.

4. Additional amount due for pick-up trucks for Service Department (Collection Buick-GMC - $107.50)

The truck purchase was approved in April. This is an overage due.

5. Laptop purchase for Council Clerk.

Mr. Saponaro asked Mary Beth to explain what is going on with her laptop.

Mrs. Betsa replied, it’s overheating and shutting down. 

Mr. Saponaro stated, then she can take minutes and lose them if she’s not constantly saving or it breaks down and she can’t access them.

Mrs. Betsa replied, Jeff has checked it.  He wanted to look at it again last week, but I was busy with Civil Service, Charter Review and Council. He is out this week and I was planning on having him look at it next week.

Mr. Saponaro stated, we wanted to get this item on the agenda.  This is not going to be a huge dollar item, but we still need to make sure it is covered.  Are there any questions on this?

Mr. Marquardt asked, is it under the Mayor’s spending limit?

Mr. Saponaro replied, it is.  But because we never put anything on the budget, it makes sense for us to discuss it and bring it forth. Are there any other questions? There were none.

6. 6483 Highland Road

Mr. Saponaro stated, this was approved at Drainage and Infrastructure. The total cost to the Village is $525.00. It’s the Horvath property.

7. 800 Village Trails

Mr. Saponaro stated, this was approved at Drainage and Infrastructure.  It’s $5,040 minus 10%.

Mrs. Mills asked, do the residents participate?

Mr. Saponaro replied, yes, 10%.

Mr. Marquardt stated, this seems like a big number.

Mr. Saponaro stated, $10,000 is generally the cost.  Most of the projects we take on run between $4,000-9,000.  We do our assessment at D&I. We categorize it and give it a rating. This is going to affect more than a couple properties.

Mr. Marquardt asked, how does that fit into the budget?

Mr. Saponaro replied, we have a budget of $25,000.  How much have we expended so far this year?

Mr. Wynne replied, nothing.

Mr. Jerome replied, I don’t think anything last year either.

Mr. Wynne replied, we did five projects last year.

Mrs. Mills stated, you did the one on Highland Road last year.

Mr. Wynne added, we received $1,500 each back on the five projects last year.

ANY OTHER MATTERS

Mr. Saponaro asked, are there any other matters?  There were none.

There being no further business, the meeting adjourned at 7:50 p.m.  The next Finance Committee meeting is scheduled for Monday, May 18, 2015 at 7:30 p.m. in the Main Conference Room. 

Respectfully submitted,

Mary E. Betsa, Clerk of Council