City of Moline Committee of the Whole met October 23.
City of Moline Committee of the Whole met Oct. 23.
Here is the minutes provided by the committee:
PRESENT: Mayor Stephanie Acri (Chair)
Alderman Quentin Rodriguez (Ward 1)
Alderman David Parker, Jr. (Ward 2)
Alderman Mike Wendt (Ward 3)
Alderman Richard “Dick” Potter (Ward 4)
Alderman Lori Turner (Ward 5)
Alderman Kevin Schoonmaker (Ward 6)
Alderman Mike Waldron (Ward 7)
Alderman Sonia Berg (Alderman At-Large)
STAFF: Doug Maxeiner, City Administrator
Maureen Riggs, City Attorney
Janine Hollembaek Parr, City Clerk
Alison Fleming, Human Resources Manager
Lori Wilson, Parks Recreation Director
Don Goff, Information Technology Manager
Bryon Lear, Library Director
David Gass, Acting Chief of Police
Jeff Snyder, Fire Chief
Kathy Carr, Finance Director
Jeff Anderson, City Planner
J.D. Schulte, Public Works Director
Rodd Schick, Municipal Services General Manager
Tony Loete, Utilities General Manager
K.J. Whitley, Community Development Program Manager
Tara Osborne, Grant & Project Accountant
Sarah Mark, Fleet Administrative Assistant
Arnold McCollom, WPC Operations Technician
Keith Verbeke, Finance Manager
Brian Johnson, Police Captain
Randi Haley, Billing Customer Service Manager
Tom Hepner, Public Works
Joseph Riley, Public Works
Chad Rogers, Public Works
Jody Walker, Police Executive Coordinator
OTHERS: Dr. Melvin Grimes
Members of the Moline Housing Authority Board and Staff
Gerold Shelton, The Dispatch
Members of the Media
Mayor Acri called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. in Council Chambers.
Mayor’s Board Appointments
Mayor’s appointment of Amanda Kernan to the Moline Centre Main Street Commission effective October 23, 2018. A motion was made by Alderman Wendt to approve. Seconded by Alderman Parker. Motion passed unanimously.
Recognition of the Rev. Dr. Melvin Grimes, Commissioner and Chairman of the Board for the Moline Housing Authority, for distinguished service.
Recognition of City staff members Tom Hepner, Joseph Riley, Chad Rogers, Don Goff, Jody Walker, and Sgt. Kevin Cox, for extraordinary efforts to complete the installation of in squad car cameras to meet challenging grant deadlines.
Questions on the Agenda
There were no questions.
2019 Budget Work Session #2
City Administrator Doug Maxeiner and Finance Director Kathy Carr provided and reviewed a summary of Work Session #1 Council directives, and resulting staff proposals. The proposed adjustments would keep the tax levy flat, while balancing the budget.
Proposed parks and library budget cuts: Consider cutting parks and library salary reserves, approximately $70,000 and $30,000 respectively. Mayor suggested that Council’s direction in regard to said cuts need not be definitive, as the boards have authority. There was concern that while the park board has reserve funds to support a cut, the library board does not. Council directed staff to ensure that services, materials and programs are not compromised.
Bi-lingual customer service representative: Staff stated that the first point of contact at City Hall should be bi- lingual, because the majority of grant applicants need Spanish-speaking assistance.
Property tax: Mayor Acri requested that Council consider keeping the property tax rate unchanged, capturing the equalized assessed value (EAV) growth of 1.7 percent, and investing the funds into the City’s roads.
Continued Discussion and Consideration of the Proposed 2019 Budget
Council and City staff reviewed the remaining pages of the proposed 2019 budget. Proposed changes discussed:
1. Opportunity Zone: Investigate the use of these funds for infrastructure to Centre Station.
2. TIF #3: Transfer funds to Parks for park enhancement (fence) within this district. Planning and Development Director Ray Forsythe indicated a development agreement could support this.
Alderman Wendt, seconded by Alderman Waldron, moved to amend the budget to reflect the water and sewer extensions that were done in TIF #7 be paid from the Water and Sewer Funds. Motion carried with Alderman Potter voting nay.
4. Professional Development: Alderman Berg requested that staff consider a Citywide cut to professional development.
5. IT: Staff is investigating E-rate participation. The rebate will help offset increased technology expense due to greater use in the field.
Per Mayor Acri, a recess was taken at 7:33 p.m., with the Committee-of-the-Whole meeting reconvened at 7:40 p.m.
6. Human Resources: Staff was directed to utilize the contracted nurse as much as possible.
7. Workers Comp: Council directed staff to investigate reducing the large claim deductible line item by $500,000 and $750,000, and report back. Staff is waiting for the actuarial report to aid in setting the liability reserve fund, and will be bringing a recommendation to Council within the next few weeks.
8. Fleet: Alderman Wendt requested that the proposed purchase of commercial mowers be reduced from three to one. Public Works Director J.D. Schulte countered with a recommendation to instead postpone for one year the purchase of a 3⁄4-ton truck for Traffic.
9. Property Tax: Staff is seeking Council direction regarding the recommendation. Mayor Acri stated that she would like to see the same sophistication and concern for roads as is given to fleet. The City is replacing two miles of road when it should be replacing six.
A motion was made by Alderman Turner, seconded by Alderman Potter, to keep the property tax rate unchanged, and capture the equalized assessed value (EAV) growth of 1.7 percent. Alderman Rodriguez requested that fund allocation have a tangible neighborhood impact. Alderman Wendt stated that the EAV has historically come in lower, so that keeping the tax rate the same has resulted in a tax increase. Alderman Wendt moved to amend the motion by capturing 1 percent of the EAV. Seconded by Alderman Parker. Alderman Waldron stated that residents ask for a level property tax, and if we increase the levy, someone will pay. Alderman Waldron moved to amend and keep the levy the same as in 2018. Seconded by Alderman Wendt. Alderman Schoonmaker explained that this proposal would decrease taxes as costs increase. There will not be funds for services and capital improvements. Alderman Wendt opined that lower property taxes have a direct effect on what real estate buyers are willing to pay, having a positive long-term effect. As TIFs expire in the next few years, increased funds available for capital improvements will be realized. Motion failed on roll call with the following vote: ayes: Aldermen Wendt, Waldron, Berg and Rodriguez; nays: Aldermen Potter, Turner, Schoonmaker, Parker, and Mayor Acri. The amended motion (1 percent) failed on roll call with the following vote: ayes: Aldermen Wendt, Waldron, Berg and Rodriguez; nays: Aldermen Potter, Turner, Schoonmaker, Parker, and Mayor Acri. The original motion (1.7 percent) was brought back to the floor for discussion. Alderman Berg, seconded by Alderman Rodriguez, made a motion to table the vote for fifteen minutes. Motion to table passed unanimously.
Mayor Acri closed the Committee of the Whole meeting at 9:07, moving into the City Council meeting. Council adjourned at 9:25 p.m., and Committee of the Whole reconvened.
The tabled motion was brought back to the floor for discussion. Mayor Acri explained that Council may wish to consider the average underperformance of.297, and reduce the EAV of 1.7 percent to 1.403 percent for consideration. Alderman Wendt stated that an incremental tax levy increase annually has resulted in an increased tax rate for residents, adding that the intent of Council was to decrease the tax rate.
Alderman Wendt, seconded by Alderman Parker, moved to amend to capture 1.1 percent of the EAV. Motion failed on roll call with the following vote: ayes: Aldermen Wendt, Waldron, Berg and Parker; nays: Aldermen Potter, Turner, Schoonmaker, Rodriguez and Mayor Acri. Mayor Acri indicated that every percentage point debated equals approximately $15,000. Alderman Schoonmaker offered clarification that most residents will not see a tax increase at 1.4 percent, rather a reduction. Capturing a piece of the EAV means capturing what’s new to the City or what had been under assessed. Alderman Rodriguez made a motion to amend the original motion to increase the tax levy to.5 percent of EAV growth, reducing the tax rate. Seconded by Alderman Parker. Motion carried on roll call with the following vote: ayes: Aldermen Wendt, Waldron, Berg, Rodriguez and Parker; nays: Aldermen Potter, Turner and Schoonmaker.
Alderman Wendt requested that the captured $78,000 be allocated to the library budget.
Alderman Berg requested that staff provide a summary of Springfield and Washington D.C. lobbying, and an explanation of the increase in library salaries.
There was no public comment.
On motion of Alderman Parker, seconded by Alderman Berg, the meeting adjourned at 9:34 p.m.