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1996-10-17 Town of Truckee TOWN COUNCIL REGULAR MEETING MINUTES October 17, 1996, 5:30 P.M. Truckee Donner Public Utility District Board Room 11570 Donner Pass Road, Truckee, CA The Town Council met in Closed Session from 5:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. with all members present to discuss: Sha-Neva Claim pursuant to Government Code Section .54956.9(b)3c. Mayor McCormack announced that there was no reportable action taken in Closed Session. 1. CALL TO ORDER Mayor McCormack called the meeting to order at 6:02 p.m. 2. ROLL CALL PRESENT: Council Members Carpenter, Cross, Drake, Eagan, and Mayor McCormack ALSO PRESENT: Stephen L. Wright, Town Manager; Dennis Crabb, Town Attorney; and Vicki Soderquist, Deputy Town Clerk 3. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE was led by Chuck Holt. 4. PUBLIC COMMENT - None PRESENTATIONS (The Minutes will reflect the published agenda order.) 5.1 Nevada County Library Strategic Directions Initiative. Councilmember Eagan gave a brief history of the efforts to develop a strategic vision for the library. She also reviewed the vision statement and core strategies. The Nevada County Board of Supervisors had accepted the report and agreed to appoint an eight member Blue Ribbon Council to look at long term funding. Grass Valley, Nevada County, and Nevada County Superintendent of Schools entered into an MOU to increase the hours the libraries are open. The Nevada County Superintendent of Schools agreed to provide the financial support to keep the Madeline Helling and Grass Valley libraries open on Saturdays during the school year which would compliment their Saturday school program for kids. They also agreed to provide new young adult books to the library system, provide a grant writer to pursue funding, wire computer labs at both the Madeline Helling and Grass Valley libraries, and provide ten computers for those labs. The City of Grass Valley agreed to reimburse the County for staff up to an amount of $10,000/year which would only be until June 1998 when it was expected that the Blue Ribbon Council would have developed long term funding solutions. They would also be soliciting community contributions for capital improvements. The MOU would not become official until Nevada County hired a librarian and adequately staffed the two libraries.. She hoped that a grass roots effort would be undertaken in the Truckee area which would lead to the long term sustainability of the library system. 5.2 Proposition 218 - The Fox Initiative. Recommendation: Council provide direction as desired. Mr. Wright stated according to the legislative analyst the Proposition would restrict local govemmants ability to charge property related fees/assessments. Services that would be impacted was one of the unresolved questions, but it would clearly be more restrictive to local governments and could require additional ballot measures regarding property related fees. There would be an increase in costs to local governments in the hiring of consultants/engineers to perform the analysis in order to get items on the ballot. Votes would be weighted by property value, including public and commercial property and public agencies could also be responsible for fees assessed, The Town's biggest issue would be the fifteen Town Special Service Areas (TSSA's) and one County Service Area (CSA). The results could be reduced services, subsidies from the General Fund, or abandoned services if an election for increased fees was defeated. It was estimated that the Proposition, if passed, would cost local govermnents over $100 million annually and in the initial year approximately $10 million to hire consultants to perform the analyses required. Due to the grandfathering of the TSSA's, staffdid not feel they would have the initial costs. They did feel that many of the TSSA's, because they were at their limit, would require consultant analyses and elections in the future which would result in additional costs. Mr. Crabb stated the Proposition raised complex legal issues: 1) levying of general and special taxes - that section did not change the existing law substantially; 2) dealt only with property related fees and charges; and 3) property related fees and assessments - which was the area of complexity and uncertainness. The fundamental question was the definition of a property related fee and assessment. He then reviewed the possible ambiguities regarding voting rights. Given the complexities, it was his legal recommendation to do a line by line analysis of every Truckee revenue source if the measure passed. Staff would return to Council with those that were grandfathered and the issues the Council would face if they proposed any increases above the allowed cap. His biggest concern was that under the literal wording of the Proposition every new revenue initiative involving any bonded indebtedness was subject to the referendum and initiative process. Therefore, the validity of the fee would not be known until the initiative was completed and there was no statute of limitations, i.e. it could be challenged at any point in the process. There was also a question regarding liability for the town/city when a fee was voted down and services were cut back. Councilmember Cross questioned the constitutionality of the Proposition, i.e. the assessed valuation being the basis of voting. Mr. Crabb expected there would be a challenge on that basis. There was a "killer clause" in the Proposition which stated that if the Proposition was challenged on the basis of constitutionality everything would require a 2/3rds vote, Councilmember Eagan questioned if that language was in the ballot argument. Mr. Crabb responded that it was not. Councilmember Eagan felt the change in voting from one person/one vote was very troubling. The Proposition gave a lot of weight to large money interests which she found offensive. Mr. Wright stated there was also a concern that foreign corporations that owned large amounts of property would be allowed to vote. Mayor McCormack questioned ifa vote would be required if the solid waste went to a billing cycle. Mr. Wright stated because it was a straight charge for services it would not require a vote. The Town would have to assess the impact on the costs to the homeowner to set up a billing/accounting process and factor in unpaid accounts. Presently, people that owned Town Council Minutes October 17, 1996 Regular Page 2 second homes helped to pay the cost of refuse collection and that type of revenue source would potentially go away with individual billing. Chuck Holt questioned whether the elected representatives or administration would vote for public property. Mr. Crabb stated it was assumed that the initial decision would be up to the elected board and then it would become an administrative bill. One public entity would have to determine the valuation of another entity's property and it was expected that would also result in litigation. Josh Susman stated if the Proposition passed an option would be to impose additional developer fees to recoup any losses. The real estate and development communities were already upset with the assessments/fees and he questioned the impact. Mr, Crabb responded that SB1600 limited the ability to assess development fees. If the community as a whole decided to assess new development costs the SB 1600 limitations would not apply to special taxes. Mr. Wright stated the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce was concerned that cities/towns would focus special fees on special interests in the business community to make up revenue losses. George Robertson stated he was upset with the Proposition due to all the ramifications. He felt the Landscape and Lighting Act had emasculated Proposition 13. The voters should have a say on what they paid taxes on. Parvin Darabi felt Proposition 218 should be defeated. If the Town discontinued services and residents had to pay for services, she felt it would be extremely expensive. Phillip Shott questioned what would happen with the money previously received from assessments if services were discontinued. Mr. Wright stated he did not have an answer. The base level of income presently generated was grandfathered in. If additional revenues were needed and the voters tumed it down, the Town would have to determine how to make up that difference, i.e. reduce or discontinue the service or subsidize it from the General Fund. If services were discontinued there would be a liability issue. If the Town discontinued services they would no longer collect the base assessment. Councilmember Drake stated hundreds of cities/towns would be punished if the Proposition was passed. The Proposition would affect each agency/town/city differently and he had been told that was due to compromises in order to avoid objections. The Proposition was not consistent. Councilmember Cross felt propositions and initiatives had become a business with a lot of people making money. State government had also abdicated their responsibility in dealing with issues and the public was being misled by the information being released. Mayor McCormack questioned Council's desire regarding adoption of a resolution in opposition. Councilmember Cross stated he was uncertain as to the value of taking a formal position. He felt it could be perceived as the Council trying to protect itself. He Town Council Minutes October 17, 1996 Regular Page 3 recommended that Council talk to their friends and neighbors regarding the potential impacts. Mayor McCormack stated a well structured resolution might be a mechanism for communication. Councilmember Carpenter stated the headlines would only state that the Council was against the Proposition and not include the body of the resolution dealing with impacts. The Policy Committee had been clear in their recommendation to take it to the public and to be cautious in taking a stand. He did not believe the Council should take a formal position. Councilmember Drake agreed with Councilmember Carpenter's comments. CONSENT CALENDAR (One simple motion approves all of the following actions.) Mr. Wright recommended that Council continue the portion of Item 6.3 that dealt with Prosser Lake Heights as it needed further analysis. Staff would report back at the next regular meeting. Motion by Councilmember Drake, Seconded by Councilmember Carpenter, passed unanimously to approve the Consent Calendar with Item 6.3 pulled for discussion. 6.1 6.2 6.3 Minutes of October 3, 1996 Regular Council Meeting. Recommendation: approve. October Treasurer's Report. Recommendation: approve. Award Snow Removal Contracts. Recommendation: authorize Public Works to enter into agreement with Halls Excavating (Glenshire), Heavy Equipment Construction (Prosser Lakeview Estates), and A1 Pombo, Inc. (Prosser Lake Heights). Pulled from the Consent Calendar. Councilmember Carpenter questioned why a stand- by rate was not included in the bid for Prosser Lakeview Estates. Jon Lander, Town Engineer, stated it was his understanding that the bidder was not asking for a stand- by charge; when he performed a service he would bill the Town. Councilmember Carpenter questioned whether that meant he would be available as intended. Mr. Lander stated that was his understanding. Councilmember Carpenter stated he was somewhat uncomfortable with the Public Works Director choosing the bid versus the dollar amount. He questioned the difference between the $42,000 and $62,000 bid. Mr. Lander replied that the second proposal did not have the motor grader or sand track as requested. Therefore, it impacted the bottom line cost. It was his understanding that the higher bid was being recommended for approval as it would provide a full range of service if needed. Mr. Wright stated the issue was the non-responsiveness of the bid. Councilmember Carpenter questioned if bidders were notified that they did not receive the award because they did not meet the requested qualifications of the proposal. Mr. Lander stated that was his understanding. Mayor McCormack questioned if staff was satisfied with the responsiveness to the proposal. Mr. Lander stated the initial meetings included more contractors and it appeared that the contractors most local to the areas were the ones that submitted Town Council Minutes October 17, 1996 Regular Page 4 bids. He felt other contractors were waiting to see how the process worked regarding stand-by, etc. It was the Town's intent to have as many reasonable responses as possible, but he felt the bids received were fair and a good place to start. Councilmember Carpenter questioned if the bid documents were clear as to what the Town requirements were. Mr. Wright felt the requirements were clear and a copy of the proposed contract was also included with the bid documents. Meetings were also held with the contractors regarding the needs of the Town and addressed possible subcontracting of finns so the bidder would have the required equipment. Mayor McCormack questioned if there were set guidelines regarding the stand-by fee. Mr. Wright stated that he would have to discuss that mount with the Public Works Director. Staff would provide Council with back-up information prior to entering into contracts. Mayor McCormack stated the total of the three bids was approximately $121,000 and questioned how that would compare to the costs the Town would incur if they did the work. Mr. Lander stated the Public Works Director indicated that the cost was similar to the amount spent in the three areas last year. He felt there would be a better level of service without spending more money. Motion by Councilmember Drake, Seconded by Councilmember Cross, passed unanimously, to approve the bids for Glenshire/Devonshire and Prosser Lakeview Estates. Staffis to return to Council with the bids for Prosser Lake Heights. 6.4 6.5 Sha-Neva vs. Town of Truckee. Recommendation: deny claim. Annual Transit Claim for Transportation Development Act Funds. Recommendation: approve Resolution 96-37 and the claim form for fiscal year 1996/97. Councilmember Drake felt the area was fortunate to have such a well run system. PUBLIC HEARINGS 7.1 Public Hearing to consider the appeal of a Planning Commission action to deny the industrial warehouse building portion of land use application 94-104/HSP, Edgar Stratton, applicant/owner. Recommendation: Council uphold the Planning Commission action to deny the warehouse building portion of the application and the added bonding requirement for the Stratton Hearing Site Plan application. Mr. Wright stated that staff had received a letter from Mr. Stratton's attorney requesting that the public hearing be continued to the next regular meeting due to his inability to be at the meeting to represent his client. Mayor McCormack questioned if any member of the public wished to address the Council. No members of the public came forward. Town Council Minutes October 17, 1996 Regular Page 5 Motion by Councilmember Carpenter, Seconded by Councilmemher Drake, to continue the public hearing to the meeting of November 7, 1996. Councilmember Cross stated he would abstain from participation due to a conflict of interest. Vote on Motion: approved 4-0~0-1 with Councilmember Cross abstaining. STAFF REPORTS 8.1 Use of Town Logo. Recommendation: Council provide direction to staff. (Continued from the 10/3/96 meeting.) Jill Fox, Director of Finance, stated the contest had language that restricted use of the logo, stated it would become property of the Town, and could not be used without permission of the Town. The two issues were: 1) did the Town want to protect the logo; and. if so, 2) what was the best method of protection for the logo, i.e. policy/ordinance or copyright. There had been several instances where the logo had been used without the Town's permission. There had also been several instances where the Town had been approached for permission which had been refused due to the lack of a policy allowing such a use. The cost for copyrighting the logo was estimated at $2,500. Mayor McCormack questioned the benefit of copyrighting versus an ordinance. Mr. Crabb stated copyrighting would provide protection state/nation-wide. If there was any infringement on the logo the Town would have a protectable right. An ordinance would only protect the logo in the immediate geographical area and violation would be a misdemeanor/fine. Councilmember Drake stated a local business had used the logo and he felt that was inappropriate. Mayor McCormack questioned if the original designer had any rights to the logo. Mr. Crabb replied that staffwas working under the assumption that he did not have any rights because a general release was a condition of the contest. Councilmember Cross questioned if the $2,500 fee would be reduced in the future. Mr. Crabb replied the cost would go down as copyrighting became more common, but because it was done by patent and trademark attorneys, a very select group, he did not feel the cost would be greatly reduced. Councilmember Carpenter felt that allowing people to use the logo to promote the Town would be a benefit to the promotion services. He recommended an ordinance which prohibited illegal/offensive/abusive use of the logo. Councilmember Eagan supported the use of the logo for promotional activities, but was concerned when a local service provider used the logo and created the impression that the Town of Truckee was associated with their business. Something had to be done to prohibit such a use. Mayor McCormack stated the logo was Town Council Minutes October 17, 1996 Regular Page 6 10. 11. valuable and could be used for the promotion of the Town, but there should be a way to control the use. Councilmember Carpenter agreed with Councilmember Eagan, but he did not want to get into a level of control where the Town received revenues from usage. Councilmember Drake suggested an ordinance structured so that permission would have to be granted for any use. If permission was not requested the Town would have recourse against anything they deemed offensive. If it was tourism related, permission would be granted. He questioned what the issue was that prompted Hollywood to copyright their logo. Mr. Crabb stated the existing federal law stated a municipal symbol could not be trademarked/copyrighted. Hollywood had a lot of businesses using their logo and they were concerned with their image. They were also involved in a very aggressive promotion program using the logo as their symbol and that was how they were able to copyright and license the use of the logo. He felt that would be the direction any ordinance adopted by the Council would have to take. Motion by Councilmember Drake, Seconded by Councilmember Carpenter, passed unanimously, to direct staff to develop an ordinance and bring it back to Council for action. Mayor McCormack stated that a policy statement would have to be developed so all requests would not have to be brought to Council for approval/denial. 8.2 Status Report on Balfour Reach Equestrian Center: Recommendation: Council provide direction to staff as necessary. Tony Lashbmok, Director of Community Development, informed Council that the application had been withdrawn prior to the public hearing by the County. MATTERS OF INTEREST TO COUNCIL MEMBERS 9.1 League of California Cities Resolutions. Councilmember Drake informed the Council that he was forwarding a memorandum to Council regarding the League action on the proposed resolutions. CLOSED SESSION regarding litigation against Nevada City pursuant to Government Code Section 54956.9. Closed Session was not held. ADJOURNMENT - Mayor McCormack adjourned the meeting at 8:14 p.m. Respectfully submitted, STEPHEN L. WRIGHT, Town Manager Town Council Minutes October 17, 1996 Regular Page 7