Recap of May 15, 2012 City Council Meeting

Filed under: City |

In Attendance:
Mayor David Green
Mayor Pro Tem Johnette Jameson
Councilmember At Large Janet Harris
Councilmember Don Freeman
Councilmember Leslie Thomas
Councilmember Grady Smithey

Duncanville City Council

Meeting Agenda

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

REGULAR MEETING — 7:00
Council Chambers, City Hall
203 E. Wheatland Road

REVISED AGENDA

Invocation
Pledge of Allegiance
Mayor’s Report

Green reported on the current Duncanville Community Theatre production of “Curious Savage” and encouraged everyone to make reservations and see the production. Carla Bryan recognized Urla Morgan and announced her retirement on May 18.
Recognition of Visitors / Proclamations / Presentations

Citizens Public Comment Period
[Each speaker will be allowed two (2) inutes to address the council.]

Cindy Jones spoke on the Audit (Item 5C) and asked for answers to the following questions:

  • Did the auditor find any fraud
  • How did Duncanville measure up to other cities that the audit firm has been employed by
  • Did the auditor find any occurrences that would cause citizens to call the Texas Rangers and ask for an investigation

1. Consider approval of Resolution No. 2012-051501 canvassing results of the general election held May 12, 2012. Considerar la aprobacién de la Resolucién No. 2012-05150] resultados escrutinio de las elecciones generales del 12 de mayo 2012.

2. Administer the Oath of Office to newly elected Councilmembers. Administrarjuramento a los miembros del Nuevo Consejo.

Items 1 & 2 were pulled because the final results were not provided by the elections department. There is another special meeting called for Thursday to canvas the results.

CONSENT

3C. Approval of minutes.

4C. Approval of Resolution No. 2012-051504 denying Atmos Energy Corp, Mid-Tex Division’s (“Atmos Mid-Tex”) requested rate change; requiring the Company to reimburse the City’s reasonable ratemaking expenses; finding that the meeting at which this Resolution is passed is open to the public as required by law; requiring notice of this Resolution to the Company and ACSC’s legal counsel.

5C. Acceptance of FY 2010-2011 Audit.

6C. Approval of Statement of Change of Registered Agent for the Duncanville Community & Economic Development Corporation.

Items 3C, 4C, and 6C were approved by a 6-0 vote.

Item 5C was pulled for separate discussion.

Thomas relayed information from the auditor. The financial issues and health of the audit were good. The concerns outlined in the report could be addressed with the hiring of additional persons (1.5 persons) for the Finance Department. They also recommended at internal audit, one department at a time.

Freeman thanked the Finance Department for their diligence.

Smithey stated that if the city was going to add a person, then the council needs to realize that there is costs associated. He also called for CPA’s to volunteer o assist on the council audit committee. There is room for two CPA’s to be appointed to the committee.

Jameson agreed with Smithey on the need for CPA’s to be placed on the audit committee.

Item 5C passed by a 6-0 vote

REPORTS/RECOMMENDATIONS/REQUESTS

7. Consider directing staff on the request of Zenovia C. Oancea of Zeni’s Care Home, owner, to amend the existing “NR” Neighborhood Retail Zoning to include a Special Use “SU” Permit to allow a convalescent home on Block 1, west one-half of Lot 11, of the Original Town of Duncanville, more commonly known as 302 N. Hastings Street.

Smithey moved for approval, Thomas seconds.

Citizen Nancy Smith spoke against the item because of parking and traffic concerns.

Mr. Oancea spoke of his escape from Romania and his life. He spoke on fixing up the house and their desire to help seniors. He also pointed out that they did not provide medical services, but provided basic living necessities. They have been approved by the state. He also pointed at the city assisted Ben Franklin and allowed them to grow and then allowed them to build the additional parking.

Smithey pointed out that if this was actually in a residential district, it would be unnecessary to come before the council. He stated that Duncanville needs these types of businesses and that he supports the SUP.

Mrs. Oancea read a letter from a resident at their location that stated she had no family and without the Oancea’s, she didn’t know where she would live and get help.

Zenovia Oancea said that they would be receiving a Type b assisted living license.

Thomas said that she read an article in the Dallas Morning News that stated these businesses were unregulated and that some in Dallas County had been found to be substandard. She advised that Dallas is currently putting together an ordinance to cover these types of businesses and wanted Duncanville to put together guidelines.

Green pointed out that there was already such a business in Duncanville and if this location was zoned residential that they would not have to acquire a specific use permit.

Harris stated that she was in favor of this type of business, but noted that she felt that this was not the right location.

Green pointed out that by zoning, this location could be a shop or restaurant and it would see much more traffic.

The vote was taken and was defeated 2-4, with Green and Smithey voting for the motion.

8. Consider directing staff on the request of Wilsonia Prichard, representing Destiny Ventures, LLC (Just Dance), tenant, to amend the existing Local Retail-2 zoning to include a Specific Use “SU” Permit to allow a party/event facility (indoor only) on Block B, Lot 11, of Duncanville Estates 1, more commonly known as 311 S. Cedar Ridge Drive, Suite 110.

Freeman made a motion to approve, with the following stipulations:

  • The Specific Use Permit was for this owner only and not transferable
  • Permit was good for a 6 month period and that two or more justifiable complaints would be sufficient to not renew
  • Noise and group complaints would be sufficient
  • Off-duty, uniformed, Duncanville police officers would be employed by the business for events
  • No alcoholic beverages
  • Member of the staff must be present to monitor
  • Food provided from an outside source

Jameson seconded the motion.

Freeman stated that he had visited the location and with those that had protested and felt that the stipulations addressed the complaints

Thomas stated that homeowners bought their homes with an expectation that did not include traffic and music at night.

Harris stated she visited the location and there is a large alleyway and space between the business and the homes. She said that she had them turn the music up and it could not be heard in the alley behind the business. There are other businesses in the shopping center that are open late, serve food and alcohol, and have traffic.

Smithey pointed out that planning tries to put apartments between businesses and residential areas, but Duncanville did not want apartments.

Citizen David Bolt said that Duncanville needs more activity within the nightscape of Duncanville and that “the easiest thing to do is sleep” in Duncanville.

Jameson stated that she did visit the location and didn’t think the music was turned up as loud as it would be at these events. She requested that in 6 months that staff bring a report back to the council to outline any problems with the business.

The City Attorney advised that since Planning and Zoning reached a 2-2 vote on the request, that it would take a super majority of the council (a unanimous vote in this instance) to overturn the commission.

The motion passed 6-0.

9. Consider approval of Resolution No. 2012-051509 authorizing submission of a grant application with Dallas County for the County Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program for FY 2012.

Jameson motioned to approve the submission to cover the cost of a code enforcement officer and improvements to Chris Paris Park with Smithey seconding.

Thomas made a motion to split the code enforcement officers salary between the grant and general fund expenditure, with the additional funds going to the Winding Trail street overlay. The motion died for the lack of a second.

Smithey called for the question, which failed on a 3-3 vote.

Harris stated she felt that code enforcement was needed for the entire city, just not the areas covered by the grant.

Green asked if the areas covered in the grant were a full-time job, and Public Works Director Steve Miller said it was.

Smithey asks for the total amount to overlay Winding Trail. Miller stated it was approximately $109,185.

Freeman stated that he thought that it didn’t make sense to take money from the general fund to fund the officer.

Jameson pointed out that the funds could go for a variety of projects, including the officer.

Harris did not want to jeopardize the officers job.

Jameson stated that the city could find the money to cover and that almost the same amount of money was saved by not doing a water rate survey.

Green pointed out that the money for the survey was from the utility fund and not general fund.

The substitute motion failed 3-3.

The original motion passed 6-0.

10. Consider approval of a one-year contract with TML for health benefits administration and stop-loss coverage and a one-year renewal with Cigna for life insurance coverage.

Smithey moved and Harris seconded.

Retired employee Cindy Boland spoke concerning the proposed 8% increase in retiree insurance and on the fact that the city supplements the active employee spousal and dependent coverage. She also spoke on the fact that last year the retiree’s saw an increase of 20%

Retired police officer Roger Foster spoke about the 20% increase last year, and the 10% increase the year before. He also said that since 2008 the retirees had not received a cost of living adjustment from the council and asked the council to remember those that gave years of service.

Retired police officer John Cole reminded the council that in the 1980’s active employees deferred pay raises to ensure retirees had a cost of living adjustment available. Cole also said that he pays over $13,000 annually for health insurance.

After additional questions from Thomas, Harris, and Freeman, the motion was made by Smithey to amend the original motion to not pass the cost on to the retiree, but increase employee depended coverage by 8% and the city would absorb the cost.

11. Receive Police Department public safety report.

Police Chief Robert Brown showed the council that the city is experiencing a 7% drop in crime when compared to last year, and that all the four districts of the city had seen reduced crime.

12. Receive Councilmember Reports — Items of community interest regarding which no action will be taken, as authorized by Section 551.0415 of the Government Code.

None

13. Recess into Executive Session pursuant to G.C. Section 55 1 .O71(2) to receive legal advice regarding engagement agreement with auditor for Main Station.

 

14.Consider approval of engagement agreement with auditor for Main Station.