Springfield City Council LIVE October 7, 2019

Welcome to tonight’s City Council meeting!

City Council Meeting: City Council meets every other Monday at 6:30 pm in Historic City Hall, Springfield MO.

Posted by City of Springfield, MO – Connect with SGF on Monday, October 7, 2019

Mayor McClure calls the meeting to order at 6:35 p.m..

Councilman Matt Simpson is not in attendance tonight.

  1. ROLL CALL.
  2. APPROVAL OF MINUTES. September 9, 2019 And September 23, 2019 City Council Meetings And September 17, 2019 And September 24, 2019 Special City Council Meetings.

    Approved 8-0
  3. FINALIZATION AND APPROVAL OF CONSENT AGENDAS. CITIZENS WISHING TO SPEAK TO OR REMOVE ITEMS FROM THE CONSENT AGENDAS MUST DO SO AT THIS TIME.

    Passes 8-0
  4. CEREMONIAL MATTERS.
  5. CITY MANAGER REPORT AND RESPONSES TO QUESTIONS RAISED AT THE
    PREVIOUS CITY COUNCIL MEETINGS.

St. Louis Blues day coming up Thursday.

  1. SECOND READING AND FINAL PASSAGE. Citizens Have Spoken. May Be Voted On.
  2. Council Bill 2019-219. (McGull)
    A special ordinance declaring the necessity of condemning construction and permanent
    easements over, under, and through the following properties generally located near 340 South
    Patterson Avenue and west of East Horning Street, south of Elmwood Avenue in the City of Springfield, Missouri; and authorizing certain officers, or their designees, to do all things necessary to carry out the terms of this Ordinance for the purpose of completing the Beechwood Heights Storm Water Project-Phase I: East Walnut Street Project #2015PW0091WTE funded through the 1⁄4-Cent Capital Improvement Sales Tax.

Councilman McGull said he went to talk to the landowner and he believes something can be worked out; it would save the city the cost of litigation. He wants to table the measure.

Councilman Ferguson asked if McGull asked neighbors about a pause. McGull said he did not, but since we’re not in a rainy season, it’s not a costly delay.

“I’m not opposed to lawyers making money,” McGull said, “but I want to try and save the city some money.”

City Manager Jason Gage said he didn’t think a short delay would cause a problem for the project.

McGull moves to table the bill until November 4, 2019 meeting; Ollis seconds, passes 7-1 with Councilman Schilling voting no.

  1. Council Bill 2019-220. (Lear)
    A special ordinance authorizing a budget adjustment amending the Fiscal Year 2019-2020 budget of the Department of Environmental Services Solid Waste Management Enterprise Fund in the amount of $1,850,000 by appropriating fund balance reserves of said fund for the purpose of purchasing and refurbishing several pieces of heavy equipment at the Springfield Noble Hill Sanitary Landfill.

Passes 8-0.

  1. Council Bill 2019-221. (Ollis)
    A general ordinance amending the Springfield City Code, Chapter 2, ‘Administration,’ by repealing in its entirety Section 2-8 ‘Disclosure of certain transactions.’

Passes 8-0

  1. RESOLUTIONS. Citizens May Speak. May Be Voted On.
  2. Council Bill 2019-223. (Schilling)
    A resolution granting a Short-Term Rental Type 2 Permit for the property located at 601 South Main Avenue, for the purpose of allowing the establishment of a Short-Term Rental Type 2 pursuant to Section 36-473 of the Zoning Ordinance.

Mary Lilly Smith addresses Council.

Former gas station; reuse of a empty structure. Held a public meeting with over two dozen invited; only one person showed up. No complaints about operations from the neighbors.

Two neighbors signed; a third was eliminated because he was not authorized to sign for the LLC who owned the property; surround properties who did not answer are rental properties.

Public hearing closed. As it’s a resolution, it’s voted on tonight.

Councilman Ollis asks staff if the LLCs were the ones who did not respond. Smith said she doesn’t know about the fourth property, two are LLC and one owned by the Affordable Properties board.

Ollis said his concern is when there’s no signature and he believes property owners should at least weigh in yes or no.

“If someone is not going to sign for me, I take them out of the denominator of what’s required, but I know that’s not in the ordinance,” Ollis said. “But that’s why they’re appealing to us. I feel like the property owner has an obligation to respond in some manner.”

Councilman Schilling wants to know “how many more of these that we have in the hopper.”

Smith said one that she knows of and 30 short term rentals that have picked up information but haven’t completed the process.

Schilling asked if the LLC were distant owners or local. Smith said they could be local, and she says one of the owners who signed is a local property owner who is the legal rep for the LLC.

He wants to find some other policy to keep avoiding these administrative appeals.

“This is what I had envisioned in terms of a short term rental and I think it fits the neighborhood well,” Mayor McClure said, agreeing with Councilman Lear.

McGull said property owners need to be vigilant about their properties. He said he considers owners who don’t respond to be yes votes for the applicant.

Passes 8-0

  1. Council Bill 2019-224. (Schilling)
    A resolution initiating amendments to the Springfield Land Development Code, Article III, ‘Zoning Regulations,’ for the purpose of allowing manicurists and estheticians as home occupations.

Mary Lilly Smith addresses council. This resolution initiates a change to the ordinance. This allows staff to being to work up a resolution to all work like massages, facials, waxing, etc. as a home occupation. Hairstyling and similar work is currently a home business with limited hours and customers.

This resolution does NOT change the zoning ordinance; it just allows staff to develop a bill for council.

Passes 7-1 with Mayor McClure voting no.

  1. Council Bill 2019-225. (McClure)
    A resolution confirming the appointment of Kenneth Thompson as Hearing Examiner for certain matters pursuant to Section 2-60(o)(1) of the Code of the City of Springfield; and referring certain matters to the said Hearing Examiner.

Councilwoman Fisk addresses Council.

“All complaints were made by one person against me,” Fisk said. “They’ve also been making hateful comments about me and my family on social media.”

Fisk notes the city charter was written years ago and this is an opportunity to update the charter to “reflect the 21st century.”

“We need clarification so that what I’m going through doesn’t happen to my other Councilmembers in the future,” Fisk said.

She recuses herself but says she supports the measure.

There was no public hearing…OI will check to see if no citizens had signed up.

Passes 7-0.

  1. EMERGENCY BILLS. Citizens May Speak. Be Voted On.
  2. Council Bill 2019-226. (Fisk)
    A special ordinance authorizing the City Manager, or his designee, to enter into an Intergovernmental Agreement with Vernon County, Missouri, for use of the Vernon County Jail for housing prisoners sentenced to incarceration by the Springfield Municipal Court; and declaring an emergency.

Police Chief Paul Williams addresses Council.

Prisoners who are sentenced to at least one day in jail will be transported to Vernon County at the city’s expense. The revised measure houses sentenced prisoners, up to 10. The city can’t take prisoners awaiting trial to Vernon County after November 1.

The Chief hopes to have a new proposal to Council by November 1.

Ollis asks the chief about what happens now. The Chief says the book prisoners into the Greene County Jail, and deputies transport prisoners to Vernon County.

Ollis asks if there’s a way to adjudicate the cases faster and Chief said that multiple options, including a more robust night court, are being considered.

A man named “Terry” addresses Council. He says he’s been in jail and he’s been farmed out. He says it’s “low ranked crime” which could be “thrown out by the discretion of the police officers.”

“If you send them to Mount Vernon, these people are poor,” he said. “People with money don’t have issues dealing with municipal problems. Sending [poor] people to Mount Vernon just complicates the problem.”

“You’re making things worse for people who already have problems,” he said.

“Are you telling me poor people commit crimes because they’re poor?” Councilwoman Ferguson asked.

He said he currently has fines that he owes. He said that driving the car from the car lot for his house cost $150 because he was ticketed for not having a plate.

“If we just don’t break the laws, we don’t get fined,” Councilwoman Ferguson said.

Councilman McGull said he doesn’t see an alternative in this situation.

Passes 8-0.

City Clerk Anita Cotter notes that the Council did not open the public hearing on the Fisk hearing examiner; she noted there were no speakers. The Mayor said that was his error and apologized.

City Attorney Louzader said since there were no speakers, they could close it.

The Mayor moves to have the measure reconsidered passes 7-0.

Public hearing declared open, no speakers, public hearing closed.

Council again votes 7-0 to pass the measure.

“My apologies for the oversight,” the Mayor said.

  1. Council Bill 2019-227. (Lear)
    A special ordinance authorizing the City Manager, or his designee, to apply for and accept a grant in the amount of $175,637.50 from the Missouri Department of Natural Resources to support construction of a Stormwater Improvement Project on Fassnight Creek at the Springfield Art Museum; and to amend the budget of the Department of Public Works for Fiscal Year 2019-2020 in that amount upon award of the grant; and declaring that this Ordinance qualifies as a one-reading bill.

The area will be planted with Missouri native plants.

Total estimated cost for the project is $1.8 million.

City manager noted the floodplain relief efforts are part of Council’s priorities.

Passes 8-0.

  1. Council Bill 2019-234. (Hosmer)
    A special ordinance authorizing the City Manager, or his designee, to accept funding from the Missouri Department of Social Services in the amount of $484,000.00 for the SkillUp Program to provide assistance with job skills and trainings to individuals receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Benefits; and amending the budget for the Department of Workforce Development for Fiscal Year 2019-2020 in the amount of $484,000.00; and declaring that this Ordinance qualifies as a one-reading bill.

Staff said it will provide training for 75 individuals through May 31, 2020.

Passes 8-0.

Council Bill 2019-228. (McGull)
A general ordinance amending the Springfield Land Development Code, Section 36-306, ‘Official zoning map and rules for interpretation,’ by rezoning 2.2 acres of property, generally located at 852 and 906 South National Avenue and 1224 and 1234 East Page Street, from R- HD, High-Density Multifamily Residential District and R-SF, Single-Family Residential District within Urban Conservation District No. 2, Areas A and D, to Planned Development No. 372; and adopting an updated Official Zoning Map. (Planning and Zoning Commission and Staff recommend approval.) (By: Board of Missouri General Baptist Association and Wenping Qui Etal; 852 & 906 South National Avenue and 1224 & 1234 E. Page Street; Planned Development No. 372.)

Property contains the Baptist Student Union, a cell phone company, and low density housing.

The Rountree Neighborhood Plan, created in 2018, has a multi-use plan for the area, which is more current than the 2001 Comprehensive Plan. It’s similar to the Boomertown development nearby on National.

Could include pedestrian bridge across National Avenue.

Currently the traffic access is off National, but that would close.

The architect addresses Council. He said the traffic study has already been completed.

Chris Wilson addresses Council. Baptist Student Union director. They are excited about the project because the current facility floods in the basement when there is sustained rains.

Public hearing closed.

Council Bill 2019-229. (Ferguson)
A special ordinance approving a Petition to Re-establish the Kansas and Kearney Community Improvement District; authorizing the City Manager to execute a Cooperative Agreement between the City, the District, and the Kansas & Kearney Intersection Center, LLC; and directing the City Clerk to notify the Missouri Department of Economic Development and the Greene County Clerk of the creation of the District. (Staff recommends approval.)

Approved a year ago. Organizers “inadvertently” did not make a cooperative agreement with the city within six months of approval as required by law, thus the need for a new establishment.

The petition has 100% of owner groups and assessed valuation has been obtained.

Will generate $50,000 to $100,000 when all business areas are filled in.

Up to 1 cent sales and use tax. Term is 30 years or until the CID costs are repaid.

Public hearing closed, vote in two weeks.

Council Bill 2019-230. (Ferguson)
A general ordinance amending the Springfield Land Development Code, Section 36-306, ‘Official zoning map and rules for interpretation,’ by rezoning 3 acres of property, generally located at 833, 911, and 921 East Division Street, the 1500 Block of North Sherman Avenue, and 824 and 826 East Locust Street from R-SF, Single-Family Residential, R-TH, Residential Townhouse, and LB, Limited Business to GI, Government and Institutional Use District; and adopting an updated Official Zoning Map. (Staff and Planning and Zoning Commission both recommend approval.) (By: Springfield Public Schools; 833, 911 & 921 East Division Street, 1500 Block of North Sherman Avenue & 824, 826 East Locust Street; Z-20-2019.)

Rezoning for new Boyd Elementary school.

Schools are permitted in all residential districts, but not LB where part of the land is now.

Public hearing closed, vote in two weeks.

Council Bill 2019-231. (Simpson)
A special ordinance granting Conditional Use Permit No. 439 for the purpose of reducing the front yard setback for structures built within the R-LD, Low-density Multifamily Residential District, generally located at 2675 South Jefferson Avenue. (Staff and Planning and Zoning Commission both recommend approval.)

Public hearing closed. Vote in two weeks.

Council Bill 2019-232. (Ollis)
A special ordinance authorizing the City of Springfield, Missouri, to enter into a Master Equipment Lease Purchase Agreement and related Schedule or Schedules of Equipment, the proceeds of which will be used to pay the costs of acquiring equipment for the City, to do all things necessary to carry out the lease-purchase transaction, including the execution of certain documents in connection therewith; and amending the budget of the City for Fiscal Year 2019-2020 in the amount of $517,250.

Parks department will own equipment at the end of the lease.

Public hearing closed, vote in two weeks.

Council Bill 2019-233. (Ollis)
A general ordinance amending Chapter 2, Section 2-92 of the Springfield City Code, known as the ‘Salary Ordinance,’ for the purpose of adding four new job titles to the Crafts, Trades and Labor salary schedule and two new job titles to the Professional, Administrative and Technical salary schedules and adding one additional full time equivalent position for the new job title of Airport Custodian; and amending the Fiscal Year 2019-2020 budget of the Airport Board, to
adjust the authorized employee positions.

Public hearing closed, vote in two weeks.

Meeting adjourned 7-1 with Hosmer as usual voting no.