City Council Meeting Minutes
July 7, 2014

Approved Minutes Archive

Note: Official minutes of the most recent meeting may be obtained by contacting the City Clerk's office.


The City Council met in regular session July 7, 2014 in the Council Chambers at Historic City Hall. The meeting was called to order by Mayor Robert Stephens. A prayer was given by Mayor Pro Tem Jeff Seifried.

Roll Call

Cindy Rushefsky, Doug Burlison, Jeff Seifried, Craig Fishel, Jerry Compton and Robert Stephens. Absent: Craig Hosmer and Mike Carroll.

Minutes

The minutes of June 23, 2014 and June 27, 2014 were approved as presented.

Consent Agenda

The Consent Agendas were finalized and approved as presented.

CEREMONIAL MATTERS.

Nancy Yendes Resolution. Sponsor: Stephens. Council Bill 2014-146. A resolution recognizing Nancy K. Yendes for twenty-five years of dedicated service as an employee of the City of Springfield. Mayor Pro Tem Jeff Seifried read the resolution in its entirety. City Council wished Ms. Yendes well and expressed their appreciation to her for her many years of dedicated service to the City. An opportunity was given for citizens to express their views. With no appearances, the discussion was closed. Council Bill 2014-146. Resolution 10144 was approved by the following vote: Ayes: Rushefsky, Burlison, Seifried, Fishel, Compton, Fisk, and Stephens. Nays: None. Absent: Carroll and Hosmer. Abstain: None. .

CITY MANAGER REPORT AND RESPONSES TO QUESTIONS RAISED AT THE JUNE 23, 2014 AND JUNE 27, 2014 MEETINGS:

Greg Burris, City Manager, responded all questions had been answered. Mr. Burris noted the general sales tax check from the Missouri Department of Revenue is up 26.55% compared to the month of July 2013. He added the record breaking July revenue was welcome news following the 14% decline in June sales tax revenue. Mr. Burris noted the fiscal year-to-date revenues are 4.3% higher compared with this time last year. Mr. Burris noted the City’s bond rating of Aa1 was affirmed by Moody’s on July 3, 2014. He added there was some language added that he would like to mention:

1. Under the heading ”Satisfactory Reserves …” The first sentence, “we expect the city’s financial position will remain health over the near-term given its current satisfactory reserve levels which provide adequate cushion amid fluctuating sales tax revenues and prudent fiscal management. The underlined phrase has been added.

2. Recognition of the City’s efforts to increase the reserve balance. This is what we call the “rainy day fund.”

3. Reserve levels are described as “satisfactory”. Previous reports state “the City’s reserve levels have historically been characterized as somewhat narrow especially as the city primarily relies on sales tax as its main source of operating revenue.”

4. Acknowledgement of the renewal of the Pension Sales Tax described the pension burden as “average, but manageable” Mr. Burris noted the next phase in the planned series of sewer rate increases took effect Tuesday, July 1, 2014. He added the increases were recommended by the Citizens Wastewater Task Force several years ago and will help fund the improvements needed for the Amended Consent Judgment, which is an agreement that puts in place State and Federal mandated improvements to the City’s wastewater collection and treatment systems.

Mr. Burris noted the Police Department celebrated three promotions recently: Sergeant Chad Eutsler was promoted to Lieutenant, Officer Mark Schindler was promoted to Sergeant, and Civilian DeAnn Reynolds was promoted to Fleet and Equipment Supervisor. Mr. Burris noted the City will go live with a greatly enhanced website presence July 24, 2014. He added new functionality includes a centralized calendar of events, several modules allowing citizens to sign up for news and alerts about specific topics, an improved citizen resource center and a new module to allow for more citizen engagement. Mr. Burris noted Neighborhood Watch Training was held on June 28, 2014 with approximately 70 citizens in attendance. He added several neighborhood groups and apartment complexes were represented. Mr. Burris noted the annual State of the City address would be held on Thursday, July 10, 2014 at 7:30 a.m. at the monthly Good Morning Springfield event. He added the event will be held at Mediacom Ice Park.

Mayor Stephens provided a brief update on his and Mr. Burris recent trip to Washington DC. .

The following bills appeared on the agenda under Second Reading Bills:

Rezoning: 900 North National Avenue

Sponsor: Rushefsky. Council Bill 2014-135. A general ordinance amending the Springfield Land Development Code, Section 1-1600, Zoning Maps, by rezoning approximately 0.218 acres of property, generally located at 900 North National Avenue, from an LB, Limited Business District, to a GR, General Retail District, and establishing Conditional Overlay District No. 73. (Planning and Zoning Commission and staff recommend approval.) (By: Chris Velez; 900 North National Avenue; Z-10-2014 & Conditional Overlay District No. 73.) Council Bill 2014-135. General Ordinance 6123 was approved by the following vote: Ayes: Rushefsky, Burlison, Seifried, Fishel, Compton, Fisk, and Stephens. Nays: None. Absent: Carroll and Hosmer. Abstain: None.

Rezoning: 2420 and 2446 West Grand Avenue

Sponsor: Compton. Council Bill 2014-136. A general ordinance amending the Springfield Land Development Code, Section 1-1600, Zoning Maps, by rezoning approximately 4.9 acres of property, generally located at 2420 and 2446 West Grand Avenue, from a GM, General Manufacturing District, and a R-LD, Low-Density Multi-Family Residential District with Conditional Overlay District No. 38, to an R-LD, Low-Density Multi-Family Residential District, and establishing Conditional Overlay District No. 72. (Planning and Zoning Commission and staff recommend approval.) (By: Burrell Behavioral Health, Inc. and 417 Rental, LLC; 2420 and 2446 West Grand Ave.; Z-09-2014 & Conditional Overlay District No. 72.) Council Bill 2014-136. General Ordinance 6124 was approved by the following vote: Ayes: Rushefsky, Burlison, Seifried, Fishel, Compton, Fisk, and Stephens. Nays: None. Absent: Carroll and Hosmer. Abstain: None.

Rezoning: 3200 to 3300 Blocks of South Campbell Avenue

Sponsor: Fishel. Council Bill 2014-137. A general ordinance amending the Springfield Land Development Code, Section 1-1600, Zoning Maps, by rezoning approximately 1.2 acres of property, generally located on the west side of the 3200 to 3300 blocks of South Campbell Avenue, from a Planned Development District No. 14, 4th Amendment, to an HC, Highway Commercial District, upon certain conditions being met. (Planning and Zoning Commission and staff recommend approval.) (By: Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. 8721; West side of the 3200-3300 blocks S. Campbell Avenue; Z-11-2014.) Council Bill 2014-137. General Ordinance 6125 was approved by the following vote: Ayes: Rushefsky, Burlison, Seifried, Fishel, Compton, Fisk, and Stephens. Nays: None. Absent: Carroll and Hosmer. Abstain: None.

Perimeter Landscaping

Sponsor: Hosmer. Council Bill 2014-138. A general ordinance amending the Springfield Land Development Code, Article I, Zoning Ordinance, Subsection 6-1209.B., Perimeter Landscaping, in the Springfield Zoning Ordinance to exclude perimeter landscaping requirements along public alleys. (Planning and Zoning Commission and staff recommend approval.) Council Bill 2014-138. General Ordinance 6126 was approved by the following vote: Ayes: Rushefsky, Burlison, Seifried, Fishel, Compton, Fisk, and Stephens. Nays: None. Absent: Carroll and Hosmer. Abstain: None.

RESOLUTIONS

Letter of Intent: Portion of Route 13 (Kansas Expressway)

Sponsor: Compton. Council Bill 2014-149. A resolution authorizing the Mayor to sign a letter of intent to trade the interest of the City in that portion of Route 13 (Kansas Expressway) south of Republic Street lying within City limits for the interest of the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) in the west outer road of South Campbell Avenue from Weaver Road to Plainview Road. Kirk Juranus, Co-Interim Director of Public Works, gave a brief overview of the proposed. He noted the proposed would authorize the Mayor to sign a letter of intent to trade the City’s interest in approximately ¼ mile of Kansas Expressway south of Republic Road to the Missouri Department of Transportation for the west outer road of South Campbell between Weaver and Plainview Road. He added this trade goes along with ¾ cent transportation sales tax that will be on the ballot in August, should that measure be passed, this trade would take place and then the Missouri Department of Transportation would take possession of that ¼ mile piece of road. He pointed out the location of the street on the overhead map. Mayor Stephens asked if the tax failed if this issue would go away. Mr. Juranas responded affirmatively. An opportunity was given for citizens to express their views. With no appearances, the discussion was closed. Council Bill 2014-149. Resolution 10145 was approved by the following vote: Ayes: Rushefsky, Burlison, Seifried, Fishel, Compton, Fisk, and Stephens. Nays: None. Absent: Carroll and Hosmer. Abstain: None.

EMERGENCY BILLS

Council Bill 2014-147 and Council Bill 2014-148 were read and discussed simultaneously.

Offer at Competitive Sale: General Obligation Sewer Improvement and Refunding Bonds

Sponsor: Stephens. Council Bill 2014-147. A special ordinance authorizing the City of Springfield, Missouri, to offer at competitive public sale not to exceed $8,000,000 principal amount of General Obligation Sewer Improvement and Refunding Bonds of the City of Springfield, Missouri, in one or more series; fixing a date for the sale of such bonds and approving the form of Notice of Bond Sale and Preliminary Official Statement with respect to such bonds; directing the conditional call for redemption of the Refunded Bonds (as defined below); authorizing and approving certain documents and actions in connection therewith; and declaring an emergency.

PUBLIC IMPROVEMENTS

GRANTS

AMENDED BILLS

FIRST READING BILLS

Issuance, Sale, and Delivery: General Obligation Sewer Improvement and Refunding Bonds

Sponsor: Carroll. Council Bill 2014-148. A special ordinance authorizing and directing the issuance, sale and delivery of $[Aggregate Principal Amount] principal amount of General Obligation Sewer Improvement and Refunding Bonds, Series 2014B, of the City of Springfield, Missouri; prescribing the form and details of the bonds; providing for the levy and collection of an annual tax for the purpose of paying the principal of and interest on the bonds as they become due; authorizing certain other documents and actions in connection therewith; and declaring an emergency.

Mary Mannix-Decker, Director of Finance, gave a brief overview of the proposed bills. She noted the proposed bills would offer some general obligation bonds at competitive sale. She added this is different than what was done with the special obligation bonds in the past. Ms. Mannix-Decker noted the general obligation bonds being considered tonight were approved by the voters in 2005 for the extension of sanitary sewers throughout the City. She added since then installments have been issued as clean water services has finished up the work. Ms. Mannix-Decker noted of the approximately $8 million, $3 million of that will “new money” for extension of the sewers, and the remainder, about $4.5 million will be used to refund some general obligation bonds that were issued in the early 2000’s. She added the term will not be extended, but this will allow the City to take advantage of the interest rate differential.

An opportunity was given for citizens to express their views. With no appearances, the discussion was closed. Council Bill 2014-147. Special Ordinance 26433 was approved by the following vote: Ayes: Rushefsky, Burlison, Seifried, Fishel, Compton, Fisk, and Stephens. Nays: None. Absent: Carroll and Hosmer. Abstain: None.

Beekeeping

Sponsor: Compton. Council Bill 2014-115. A general ordinance amending the Springfield Land Development Code, Article I, Zoning Ordinance, Subsection 1-1331, Agricultural Uses, to allow beekeeping as an accessory use in any district under certain conditions. (Both Planning and Zoning Commission and staff recommend approval.)

Sponsor: Burlison. Council Bill 2014-116. A general ordinance amending the Springfield City Code, Chapter 18, Animals, Article I, In General, and Chapter 74, Nuisance and Housing Code, Article VII, Nuisances, providing for standards for the keeping of bee colonies and hives, and providing for them to be declared a nuisance under certain circumstances. Ralph Rognstad, Director of Planning and Development, gave a brief overview of the proposed. He reviewed the main changes between the original bill and the substitutes. He noted the original bill allowed two hives on 10,000 square feet or less, while the substitute bill allows two hives on 10,000 square feet or larger. He added an additional hive can be added with each 5,000 square foot increment over the original 10,000 square feet. Mr. Rognstad noted the substitute also requires hives to be located in the rear of the yard and to be within a fenced enclosure at least 42 inches high. He added if the yard is fenced with a six-foot privacy fence then you don’t have to have the enclosure. Mr. Rognstad noted the original bill allowed the hives in the side yard as well as behind the front setback with no requirement for the enclosure. He added the enforcement requirements have an addition requiring training. Mr. Rognstad noted each citizen wanting to have bee hives will be required to complete a beekeeping training course offered by a beekeeping association or vocational school, college or university, or university extension program. He added if the individual moves here from out of town and has at least two years experience and no complaints in the places they lived prior, they would not have to take the training.

Councilman Burlison asked Mr. Rognstad if he thought it would damage the proposed to reduce the square footage requirements.  Mr. Rognstad responded in the negative adding they were originally lower.

Councilwoman Rushefsky noted she would be okay with reducing the square footage requirements.

Councilman Burlison moved to reduce the square footage from 10,000 square feet to 7,500 square feet. Councilwoman Rushefsky seconded the motion and it was discussed.

Councilwoman Fisk spoke in support of the motion.  She expressed her belief that everything should be done to preserve beekeeping.

Councilwoman Rushefsky noted she would like to hear from the beekeepers on their thoughts on the subject.

Councilman Fishel noted he is not opposed to the motion, but would like to hear from the beekeepers also.

Mayor Pro Tem Seifried asked Mr. Rognstad what size lots local community gardens are usually on.  Mr. Rognstad responded those are usually located on larger lots. He expressed his belief that lowering the square footage to 7,500 would increase the number of lots that would be available.

In a response to questions from Council, David Culbert, local beekeeper, noted that in other areas of the Country some people have beehives on their deck or in their small backyard.  He expressed his belief that bees don’t really take up a lot of room because their forage is quite a ways out.  Mr. Culbert expressed his support of lowering the required square footage.

Mayor Pro Tem Seifried expressed his belief that this issue should not be delayed any further.

Councilwoman Rushefsky recommended setting a threshold of 5,000 minimum square feet.

Councilman Burlison modified his motion.  He moved to reduce the 10,000 minimum square feet to 5,000 square feet in both of the proposed bills.  Councilwoman Rushefsky seconded the motion and it was approved by the following vote: Ayes:  Ayes: Rushefsky, Burlison, Seifried, Fishel, Compton, Fisk, and Stephens. Nays: None. Absent: Carroll and Hosmer. Abstain: None.

An opportunity was given for citizens to express their views. 

Nan Holland spoke in opposition to the proposed bills.  She expressed her concern that even though citizens are required to take a training class, that doesn’t mean they will put what they’ve learned into action. She also expressed her belief that the original bills were more appropriate than the substitute bills.

With no further appearances, the discussion was closed.

UNFINISHED BUSINESS

PETITIONS, REMONSTRANCES, AND COMMUNICATIONS

NEW BUSINESS.

Report for Mayor’s Commission on Human Rights Referral

The report of the Mayor’s Commission on Human Rights and Community Relations task force on the employment of offenders was referred to the Community Involvement Committeee.

Municipal Court Fees Referral

The study of Municipal Court Fees, Fines and Costs was referred to the Finance and Administration Committee.

Parking in Multi-Family Residential Districts Referral

The issue of parking concerns in multi-family residential districts was referred to the Plans and Policies Committee.

MISCELLANEOUS.

CONSENT AGENDA FIRST READING BILLS

The LINK Crossing Projects

Sponsor: Seifried. Council Bill 2014-150.A resolution approving the plans and specifications for The LINK Crossing projects at Sunset Street and at North Jordan Creek Trail and Chestnut Expressway, Plan Nos. 2013PW0063 and 2013PW0065T, and accepting the bid of Hunter Chase & Associates, Inc., for that project. Council Bill 2014-150. Resolution 10146 was approved by the following vote: Ayes: Rushefsky, Burlison, Seifried, Fishel, Compton, Fisk, and Stephens. Nays: None. Absent: Carroll and Hosmer. Abstain: None.

Interior ADA Improvements Project/Springfield Regional Arts Council

Sponsor: Rushefsky. Council Bill 2014-151. A resolution approving the plans and specifications for the Interior ADA Improvements project, in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), for the Springfield Regional Arts Council; and accepting the bid of Access Builders, Inc., for that project.

Council Bill 2014-151. Resolution 10147 was approved by the following vote: Ayes: Rushefsky, Burlison, Seifried, Fishel, Compton, Fisk, and Stephens. Nays: None. Absent: Carroll and Hosmer. Abstain: None.

Tuckpointing and Exterior Envelope Repairs

Sponsor: Fishel. Council Bill 2014-152. A resolution approving the plans and specifications for the Springfield Art Museum – Tuckpointing and Exterior Envelope Repairs, Notice to Contractors No. 2600, and accepting the bid of FA Enterprises, LLC, dba Atkins Weatherproofing for that project. Council Bill 2014-152. Resolution 10148 was approved by the following vote: Ayes: Rushefsky, Burlison, Seifried, Fishel, Compton, Fisk, and Stephens. Nays: None. Absent: Carroll and Hosmer. Abstain: None.

Westside Public Health Center Roof Replacement Project

Sponsor: Seifried. Council Bill 2014-153. A resolution approving the plans and specifications for the Westside Public Health Center Roof Replacement project, and accepting the bid of Joplin Roofing Co., Inc., for that project. Council Bill 2014-153. Resolution 10149 was approved by the following vote: Ayes: Rushefsky, Burlison, Seifried, Fishel, Compton, Fisk, and Stephens. Nays: None. Absent: Carroll and Hosmer. Abstain: None.

License Agreement with Springfield School District

Sponsor: Compton. Council Bill 2014-139. A special ordinance authorizing City Manager, or his designee, to enter into a License Agreement with the School District of Springfield R-12 (SPS) to allow drainage improvements associated with the new Sherwood School to extend onto City property. Council Bill 2014-139. Special Ordinance 26434 was approved by the following vote: Ayes: Rushefsky, Burlison, Seifried, Fishel, Compton, Fisk, and Stephens. Nays: None. Absent: Carroll and Hosmer. Abstain: None.

Police and Fire Pension Plan Amendments to Board of Trustees

Sponsors: Burlison, Fisk, Hosmer, and Seifried. Council Bill 2014-140. A general ordinance amending Chapter 2, Administration, Article VI, Finance, Division 4, Policemen’s and Firemen’s Pension Plan, Section 2-444(c), Board of Trustees established; membership; election of members, and establishing effective dates for said amendments. (Plans and Policies Committee recommend approval.)

Council Bill 2014-140. General Ordinance 6127 was approved by the following vote: Ayes: Rushefsky, Burlison, Seifried, Fishel, Compton, Fisk, and Stephens. Nays: None. Absent: Carroll and Hosmer. Abstain: None.

Council confirmed the following reappointment to the Springfield/Greene County Library Board: Jim Jeffries with term to expire July 1, 2017. With no further business to come before the Council the meeting adjourned at 7:35 p.m.

7/7/14

Brenda M. Cirtin, MMC/MPCC
City Clerk


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