EASTLAKE CITY COUNCIL
REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING MINUTES
JUNE 23, 2015
The Regular Meeting of the Eastlake City Council was held at Eastlake City Hall, 35150 Lakeshore Boulevard. The Meeting was called to order by Council President
Mr. D’Ambrosio at approximately 7:02 p.m.
The Pledge of Allegiance was recited.
Members of Council in attendance were Mr. Evers, Mr. Licht, Mrs. Quinn-Hopkins, Ms. DePledge, Mr. Hoefle, Ms. Vaughn and Council President Mr. D’Ambrosio. Also in attendance was Council Clerk Mrs. Cendroski.
Those attending from the Administration were Mayor Morley, Law Director Klammer, Finance Director Slocum, Service Director Rubertino, CBO Menn and City Engineer Gwydir. Police Chief Reik and Fire Chief Whittington were absent and excused.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Regular Council Meeting– June 9, 2015
MOTION: Ms. Vaughn moved to approve the minutes of the Regular Council Meeting of June 9, 2015. Ms. DePledge seconded.
ROLL CALL: Yeas: Ms. Vaughn, Ms. DePledge, Mrs. Quinn-Hopkins, Mr. Evers,
Mr. Hoefle, Mr. D’Ambrosio
Abstain: Mr. Licht
Motion carried. The minutes were approved.
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COUNCIL PRESIDENT’S REPORT – Mr. D’Ambrosio
Mr. D’Ambrosio: The next Council-as-a-Whole Committee Meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, July 14, 2015 at 7:00 p.m. The Regular Council meeting will be convened immediately following the adjournment of the Council-as-a-Whole Committee meeting.
COMMUNICATIONS & PETITIONS
There were no Communications and Petitions.
Mr. D’Ambrosio: An Ordinance Committee meeting was held:
ORDINANCE COMMITTEE – Mr. Hoefle, Chair
Mr. Hoefle: The Ordinance Committee met Tuesday, June 16th with all members of the Committee present. Also in attendance were all members of Council with the exception of Ms. DePledge who was absent and excused. In attendance from the Administration were Mayor Morley, CBO Menn and Fire Chief Whittington. We had one issue on the agenda – the new enactment of Chapter 769 “Donation/Recycling Bins.” All the information regarding this was relayed to the audience by Mayor Morley. We had no other concerns and the item was moved forward as presented and it appears on this evening’s agenda.
I will be scheduling an Ordinance Committee meeting for Tuesday, June 30th at 6:00 p.m. This will be in regarding to the tethering and sheltering ordinance. Our Law Director has reviewed all the information and he has given us his blessings on it.
There were no questions of Mr. Hoefle.
Mr. Evers: On behalf of E-Pal – we had our spaghetti dinner fundraiser last Sunday and I would like to thank all the residents for their support. It was a fantastic turnout. I would also like to thank all the members of Council and the Administration for their generosity because without you guys it would not have happened. Thank you everyone and thank you for your continued support.
RECOGNITION OF THE PUBLIC
Mr. D’Ambrosio recognized the public input at this time; he reminded the speakers that there is a 3-minute limit for their comments; all comments are to be directed to the Chair and not include any personalities or individuals.
There was no one who wished to speak.
LEGISLATION PROPOSED – First number will be 2015-056
ORDINANCE NO.: 06-23-(01)
Requested by: Administration An Ordinance enacting Chapter 769
Sponsored by: Ordinance Committee “Donation/Recycling Bins” of the
Codified Ordinances of the City of Eastlake,
and declaring an emergency.
MOTION: Mr. Hoefle moved to suspend the rules requiring separate readings and
reading in full. Mr. Evers seconded.
ROLL CALL: Yeas unanimous.
MOTION: Mr. Hoefle moved to adopt. Mr. Evers seconded.
ROLL CALL: Yeas unanimous.
Motion carried. Legislation is adopted as Ordinance No. 2015-056.
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There was no Legislation Pending.
There was no Unfinished Business.
There was no New Business.
MAYOR/SAFETY DIRECTOR – Dennis Morley
Mayor Morley: At approximately 4:40 – 5:00 this morning we started receiving calls of power outages, trees down, and power lines down. Throughout the day and until about 6:15 p.m. – Mr. Rubertino and I just got back in after finally going through the Surfside area. We were in the river area most of the day where most of the damage occurred on Portage, Galalina and the areas by the river. We did not have any flooding but we did have some road flooding on Galalina and River – we have pumps out and will continue to do so throughout the evening. I just got off the phone with the First Energy representative before the meeting. Eastlake still has 1,058 people with no power. There are four different sections. They have fifteen crews on and some will be ending a 16 hour shift. They have another third shift on this evening. Approximately 491 people are affected in the Lakehurst area, 398 in the Lakeshore area and another 47 on Lakeshore. The outage is caused by different things – downed trees and one big issue off of Lakeshore. They are saying possibly half will have electricity restored by 10:00 tonight and the other half by noon tomorrow. It depends on how much their crews can do. They have been walking the streets to make sure the lines are all in good shape. If I find out more I will get more out there. We are hoping all will be restored by noon tomorrow and by this evening more will be restored than what they are saying. The big cranes are out to remove trees that are on people’s homes. There have been no injuries to our employees or residents. The dedication of our Service guys and Police and Fire in being out there since 4:30 this morning is always appreciated. Chief Whittington is probably beside himself – he finally took a vacation. The Directors, Chief Reik, Battalion Chief and I have been conferencing all day to make sure we are all on the same page. The 4th of July – Eastlake, Willowick and Wickliffe have all gone in together for fireworks. It is about a $19,000 cost and we Mayors got corporate sponsors in the amount of $3,000 each and the Captains will be paying the other half. There will be no tax money spent for the fireworks. The gates open at 7:00 p.m. and fireworks will be around 9:45 p.m. or 10:00 p.m. The concession stands will be open and they are going to try to have a little entertainment. Mr. Gwydir can talk about the bids that are going out for Willowick Drive and some other areas. We are continuing to look at the sewers, catch basins and road ways. This concludes my report and I am open for questions.
Mr. Evers: Mayor, on behalf of some of the residents in the harbor area I have been asked to pass along a very heartfelt, warm thank you to you, Police Chief Reik, the Fire Department, Building Department and the Service Department. There words were that your speedy action and professionalism through all made a big difference to them in a very difficult time. Mr. Rubertino, your guys were fantastic down there. Mr. Menn, you were down there early this morning. Thank you very much to all of you for a job well, well done.
Mayor Morley: I appreciate that. We talked to a lot of residents today. They are all happy with what we did. As I continue to say we are going to put our best foot forward every time regardless of our situation. We will always look out for our residents’ safety and our employees’ safety. Again, hats off to all our Departments. I have the greatest employees who work for me.
Mr. Licht: Can you identify those three areas again?
Mayor Morley: Lakehurst has a problem – the cross arms are damaged – they have fifteen crews out. Lakeshore has a spot, Lakehurst and Marblehead right off of Reeves. That is what they are trying to fix right now. The repair will be at different phases. Some people will start getting power now – some by 10:00 p.m., depending on the wires.
Mr. D’Ambrosio: I know there was a lot of storm damage but was there any flooding?
Mayor Morley: There was no flooding except for the road area on Galalina and River – the pumps are still running right now. I did not receive any calls. I left a message on my answering machine that we are out in the area. We were out all day and ready and available to talk to people. We did not get too many calls in the office.
Ms. Vaughn: I called people who usually flood – Iris, Glen, East 347th and East 348th Streets and a couple closer to the Willowick line. Thank the good Lord there was no flooding.
Mr. D’Ambrosio: Mayor, thank you for all the text messages you sent updating us throughout the day so we would all know what is going on.
There were no further questions of Mayor Morley.
FIRE CHIEF – Ted Whittington
Chief Whittington was absent and excused.
POLICE CHIEF – Larry Reik
Chief Reik was absent and excused.
CHIEF BUILDING OFFICIAL – David Menn
Mr. Menn: When there is a storm like that and the power is out and electrical repairs are required the residents should call the electrical people out and we will worry about the permit later. If it is an emergency they are allowed to do the work without a permit and then come in within the next 24-48 hours to get a permit. We still want them to get the permit so we can see the work at the end to make sure it is right and the customer is not being taken advantage of. But you can always go ahead and get the work done and worry about the rest later. Dollar General should be starting up on Lakeshore Blvd. in a couple of weeks. This concludes my report.
Mr. D’Ambrosio: It is good to know that about the permits – get the problem taken care of and follow up with the Building Department later.
There were no questions of Mr. Menn.
SERVICE DIRECTOR – Nick Rubertino
Mr. Rubertino: We were out there today – I do not have much of a report to give. We will be picking up storm debris. The only thing we request is on limbs. We will not take chain saws out to cut up trees. We will do the best we can to accommodate everyone with the limbs that are out there but we are limited with what we can do and the timeframe. We will pick up the limbs but we will not cut branches or trees. We don’t have the time and cannot get into that. I thank the Mayor and Mr. Evers for your comments. We are dedicated and we are out there. Since 4:00 a.m. I have been going and we strive to make everything good here. I am proud of my guys. The Police, Fire and Mayor have been out there all day long. That is all I can say. I appreciate everything.
Mr. D’Ambrosio: You and your guys did great. Please pass that along to your guys.
There were no questions of Mr. Rubertino.
CITY ENGINEER – Tom Gwydir
Mr. Gwydir: The Willowick Drive bids will be in the end of the week. We have been getting calls from contractors who are very, very busy this year asking if we can extend the completion date for the contract. Per the Mayor, Willowick Drive is very important to have done this year. We extended time for completion from October to late December so we can actually get bids and we extended some of the ancillary work until next year so we can get bids in. As far as the storm water goes we are finishing up takeoffs on the central Eastlake sewer cleaning and televising and getting information together for the capacity analysis. I have prices in for the wetland delineation on Corporation Creek for the Lakeshore Blvd. sewer which is all part of that particular job. I will be submitting a letter to the Mayor shortly so he can take it to the County to make sure all the funding is in place and we will be on our way. I am open for questions.
Mr. Evers: I understand you extended the Willowick Drive completion date but when is the start date?
Mr. Gwydir: Theoretically they can’t start until after the funds become available from the OPWC which is typically July 1st. I will also tell you that people who are calling me for extended finish dates will probably not start until a little later. On a given contract if the funds are available July 1st by the time they mobilize it is the third week of July or beginning of August. Since they are asking to delay the finish it means to me they would probably start later in the summer.
There were no further questions of Mr. Gwydir.
FINANCE DIRECTOR – Mike Slocum
Mr. Slocum: I need to report that the transition to RITA which will occur next week is on target for everything to be completed and have RITA start collecting the taxes in the month of July. The box for tax drop off will be removed from the front of City Hall on July 1st and we will be replacing that with a sign that will tell people where to send the payments because we will not have the capacity to accept payments and process them. I attended their annual meeting last week. RITA will be proposing some revised ordinances to comply with the State changes on the income tax relative to penalties and certain calculations like loss/carry forwards and the like. When that comes up I will ask to refer it to Committee. We received some absolutely horrible news from the Lake County Prosecutor. The Prosecutor has advised the Lake County Auditor to not accept any more certifications of delinquent garbage bills. The affect of that will be that if Republic is not paid they will cut off service – and, they are well within their right with the contract we signed with them. They agreed to continue service as long as they could certify and see their collection. Once we take that away they will not provide service and they will not get paid. I shudder to think what affect that will have on the community. It is not just our community – the same letter went out to Painesville, Willoughby, Wickliffe – us. Every year we have certified over 500 homes for nonpayment. Probably starting next month or so those people will not have their garbage picked up. Where there garbage is going to go – our City is going to look like a – I cannot think of another term – shit hole – which I am very fearful of.
Mr. D’Ambrosio: So, we cannot certify any of the delinquents at all?
Mr. Slocum: No.
Mr. D’Ambrosio: And Republic will just stop picking up their garbage because they are not paying?
Mr. Slocum: That is right.
Ms. Vaughn: Republic cannot sue them?
Mr. Slocum: They can probably sue them but they will not spend lot of money to go after $100. They will just quit providing the service. The shame of the matter is the prosecutor has advised the auditor that there is nothing that allows the auditor to do this. It is kind of funny because if we lived in Cuyahoga County the auditor collects and has been. The auditor has always provided much more service in Cuyahoga County than what has been provided to the citizens of Lake County. When I was Finance Director of Maple Heights we did not have to worry about Waste Management collecting bills because were able to certify the bill to begin with – not the end as we are doing now after non-payment. We just certified it and collected it – that was how we paid the garbage bill. We were told we could not do that in Lake County because they do not like providing services to cities I guess because there are no services being provided to us. And I think we are actually going to experience stuff with this. I am open for questions.
Mr. D’Ambrosio: Mr. Klammer, are you looking into this?
Mr. Klammer: That is after I tried. The real interesting part is another assistant prosecutor had reviewed it before we decided to do it and approved it. It is only because there is a new assistant prosecutor assigned to represent the auditor at this point. But, there are some other cities and maybe it makes sense for the Mayors…
Mayor Morley: I am going to talk with the Mayors of the other cities. The other thing I wanted to mention – RITA sent out letters and some people are concerned. There is confusion – nothing has changed with our taxes. RITA will be providing the services. You pay 2% – it is still 2%. There are no other fees or penalties. It is exactly what we have always had. It is out there that there will be new fees – that is untrue and that will be in my next Gazette article. Hopefully people will read and see that. There are rumors out there. That is what causes the issues here – miscommunication. The taxes are the same – 2% is 2%.
Mr. Slocum: When Mr. Klammer said that a former assistant prosecutor ruled in our favor in the past – that former assistant prosecutor is now a Judge in Lake County – Judge O’Donnell.
Mr. Rubertino: There will be 500 residents who will not have their garbage picked up?
Mr. Slocum: 500 to 1,000. Every time we have certified we stared with 800 – 900 people who are not paying. If they don’t pay they will quit picking it up.
Mr. D’Ambrosio: Please keep us in the loop in regards to the other Mayors and Manager – we are not the only ones involved.
Mr. Licht: They will identify the houses prior to the stopping?
Mr. Slocum: They will work with us – we have had an excellent working relationship with Republic. This is out of our hands.
Mr. Klammer: They don’t have to advise us – they can just cut off service.
Mr. Slocum: They told me today they will advise us as to whom they will be cutting off. I spoke with one of their top people today.
Ms. Vaughn: Does this primarily apply to rental property. Are landlords not paying or are these private homes?
Mr. Slocum: We know from where we are mailing the bill – to the home or who is responsible because we pull the information off the County’s listing every September and update it. It is probably 50%-50%. There are a lot of owners not paying too.
There were no further questions of Mr. Slocum.
LAW DIRECTOR – Randy Klammer
Mr. Klammer: The only thing I want to touch on is the cabaret. The story in the paper was misleading. We have a proceeding in litigation called summary judgment. They had applied for summary judgment in their favor and the Judge denied it. We have a motion for summary judgment in our favor pending and that has not been decided on yet. Once that part is concluded I would hope we would be successful in all the claims. As soon as that happens I will let you know and if it doesn’t I assume it will move onto trial and I will deal with it at that point. I am open for questions.
There were no questions of Mr. Klammer.
The meeting was adjourned at approximately 7:28 p.m.
JOE D’AMBROSIO, COUNCIL PRESIDENT
DEBORAH A. CENDROSKI,
CLERK OF COUNCIL