10.09.18 Council Minutes

At the City Council
In and For Said City
October 9, 2018
Minutes of the Richfield City Council meeting held on Tuesday, October 9, 2018
at 7:00 p.m. in the Council Chambers of the Richfield City office building located at 75 East Center, Richfield, Utah. Mayor David C. Ogden presiding.
1. OPENING REMARKS were offered by Councilmember Arrington.
2. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE was led by Councilmember Christensen.
3. ROLL CALL. Present: Mayor David Ogden, Kevin Arrington, Bryan Burrows, Richard Barnett, Kathy Christensen, Connie Nielson, Michele Jolley. Excused: Matt Creamer, Mike Langston.
4. MINUTES APPROVED. The Council reviewed the minutes of the meeting held September 25, 2018. Motion: Approve the minutes of the meeting held September 25, 2018, Action: Approved, Moved by Kathy Christensen, Seconded by Richard Barnett. Vote: Motion carried by unanimous roll call vote (summary: Yea = 5). Yea: Kevin Arrington, Bryan Burrows, Richard Barnett, Kathy Christensen, Connie Nielson.
5. EXPENDITURES. The Council reviewed the September 2018 Warrant Register and Cash Disbursement Journal. Motion: Approve the Warrant Register and Cash Disbursement Journal for September 2018, Action: Approved, Moved by Richard Barnett, Seconded by Connie Nielson. Vote: Motion carried by unanimous roll call vote (summary: Yea = 5). Yea: Kevin Arrington, Bryan Burrows, Richard Barnett, Kathy Christensen, Connie Nielson.
6. PUBLIC HEARING FOR A CIB $1,640,000 GRANT AND A $2,460,000 LOAN FOR A STREET IMPROVEMENT PROJECT. At 7:19 p.m., Mayor Ogden opened a public hearing to receive comments on the City’s application to the Permanent Community Impact Board for a $1,640,000 grant and a $2,460,000 loan for a street improvement project. Councilmember Barnett asked when this would go before the CIB. The application was due October 1, and the funds will be released in February if that application is successful. Mayor Ogden stated that we did not do a street project this year in anticipation of a larger project this next summer. He is enthused about the new product we are going to use and he believed that this is a wiser use of our resources. Councilmember Barnett told those present that in a normal year we garner about $500,000 in class c road funds to do road projects with for the year. The idea was presented to the Council and the Council agreed with the idea that if we went to the CIB for all the money upfront and use 4 or 5 years of class c road funds as they come in to pay for the project. The Council felt that it would be a better way to maintain the roads instead of always trying to piece-meal our road maintenance. Mayor Ogden closed the hearing at 7:22 p.m.
7. MOUNTAIN BIKE TRAILS AND FUNDING OF TRAIL DEVELOPMENT DISCUSSED. Carson DeMille discussed the progress on the proposed trail system to the west of Richfield The NICA race was held here in September. There are things that they will improve on next year. They are talking about holding 2 races here next year or even the State championship. There were 1,200 racers here for that NICA race. This was a really good training experience in trail building and organizing effort. They started and finished the entire project this year. It turned out to be a great thing for the community. The restaurants sold out of food and the hotel rooms from Beaver to Gunnison were booked. It is thought that this is the single largest event that has ever been hosted in Sevier County. This is really attracting a lot of attention to our area and once the other trail system is in place, it will bring them back.
Mr. DeMille explained that we are just finishing up the environmental work. We applied for the Recreational Trails Program Grant and we recently received word that we did not get the grant. We can reapply for the grant in April and Mr. DeMille felt that we would be successful because we know the areas in our application that need to be fixed. There is also another grant that we can apply for once the environmental is complete. There are more funds in the GOED grant.
The Forest Service dozer is available for us to use from November to the end of April every year. The committee would like to start working on the trails this November. We want to apply for the grant again in April, but we would not get the funding until October. They would really like to not lose the 3 or 4 months that the dozer is available to us. The City and County had committed a total of about $12,000 towards the match for the grant and the committee proposed that since those funds have already been budgeted; those funds could be used to begin work on the trails this November to use the dozer while it is available to us.
Then when we apply for the grant again, we can show this is done and we would not have lost any ground. Doing this would also show that we are vested in this project and it would be able to be used for our in-kind portion for the new grant application.
Mr. DeMille showed the Council about how far we could get on the trail using the $12,000. He further stated that by reducing the cost, we could reduce the amount of grant being applied for, which was suggested by the grant committee. If the City is willing to come up with more funds, they will have the Forest Service guy go as hard and as fast as he can.
Councilmember Burrows stated that if the $12,000 is budgeted, we ought to give it to the committee to move forward on the project.
8. DEMOLITION OF A DILAPIDATED HOUSE AT 376 W 200 S DISCUSSED. Charles Billingsley explained the history of this property. Mr. Billingsley gave the Council a history of this property stating that this is a continual problem every year since 2007. It is getting so that we have to abate this property every year. We went in and boarded up the house so that people could not go in it because people had been living there. The home is totally inhabitable. It would cost approximate $7,000 to $10,000 and it would go on his taxes and then he would pay it like he always does.
Councilmember Burrows asked who had determined that the home was inhabitable. Mr. Billingsley said the police had been in there when we boarded up in 2015. There is no water in the home and they said it was a disaster inside. Mr. Smith told Mr. Billingsley that someone had gotten in there and stolen a safe that had guns in it before it was boarded up. No one has been in the home for 3 years. Councilmember Christensen has felt bad for the neighbors who have had to live with this house there all these years. She thought the home should come down and asked if we could legally do that. Mr. Billingsley noted that the code states that “buildings or structures which have been abandoned, partially destroyed, improperly maintained or partially constructed” can be removed. Mr. Billingsley stated that it is a viable building lot. The roof is depreciating.
Councilmember Burrows would want someone to go in and inspect the home before it is torn down and not just go on what a policeman said. He would rather know that it is uninhabitable before a decision is made. Mr. Billingsley stated that we would have the house inspected before it is torn down. Councilmember Burrows is concerned because it is private property and he pays his taxes and if we do not have something that says it needs to be torn down, we would be in a mess. Councilmember Burrows would like Mr. Billingsley to come back to the Council and let the Council know it is going to be torn down before it happens.
Mr. Billingsley stated that he would go through the process and that the abatement would not be done until that happened. He said that if he is given the approval to go forward with the abatement pending the final decision to be made next month. That would give Mr. Billingsley time to send letters and get a hold of Mr. Smith and get an inspection. Then he would report back to the Council on this.
Councilmember Barnett did not believe a motion was needed. He felt the Council could just instruct Mr. Billingsley to move forward and come back to the Council before we settle on demolishing the house. Councilmember Arrington suggested that Mr. Billingsley let Mr. Smith know that the Council is in agreement. Mr. Billingsley would like to contact Mr. Smith and have him go into the home when it is inspected.
9. LEASE FOR THE OLD AIRPORT OFFICE BUILDING TO BE USED AS A COFFEE SHOP APPROVED. The Council discussed this previously and under the Council’s direction, the City Attorney drew up a lease for a 6-month trial. Motion: Approve a 6-month lease with Travis Childers for the old airport office space to be used as a coffee shop, Action: Approved, Moved by Kathy Christensen, Seconded by Kevin Arrington. Vote: Motion carried by unanimous roll call vote (summary: Yea = 5). Yea: Kevin Arrington, Bryan Burrows, Richard Barnett, Kathy Christensen, Connie Nielson.
10. RESOLUTION 2018-7 ACCEPTING AN ANNEXATION PETITION APPROVED. The Council reviewed an annexation petition filed by the Municipal Building Authority of Richfield City. Motion: Accept Resolution 2018-7 accepting the annexation petition filed by the Municipal Building Authority for Richfield City, Action: Approved, Moved by Connie Nielson, Seconded by Kathy Christensen. Vote: Motion carried by unanimous roll call vote (summary: Yea = 5). Yea: Kevin Arrington, Bryan Burrows, Richard Barnett, Kathy Christensen, Connie Nielson.
11. SWIMMING POOL DISCUSSION. Mayor Ogden thanked all those who had come for this discussion. It is very important that we have community input. He stated that misunderstanding breeds contempt. He pointed out that Councilmember Barnett had accepted responsibility for the misunderstanding that happened a couple weeks ago and Mayor Ogden accepted responsibility for not keeping the Council apprised of what he was working on; what thought he had; and it was not anyone’s fault but his for not keeping the Council abreast of what he was thinking about doing. Part of it was that he did not want to bore the Council with all of the things and he should have asking the Council and getting their thoughts.
Mayor Ogden pointed out that Representative Carl Albrecht and Senator Ralph Okerlund were both in attendance and thanked them for all of the things they have done and are doing for rural Utah and our County. Mayor Ogden felt that it is important that we are united and move forward together. This swimming pool idea gives us some opportunity and maybe some responsibility to do that. Before we can do that, we need to understand where we are.
Mayor Ogden asked Representative Kay McIff to take a few minutes and explain where they are on their side of the issue. Mr. McIff stated that in his examination he undertook to consider what we anticipated building, where we would build it and how we would pay for it. They have had discussions about our experience in the past with the Special Events Center.
Mr. McIff felt that the fundamental question the Council needs to determine with the respect to the new facility is do we go it alone, or do we have partners. If we go it alone, he understood that our capacity was analyzed at about 6 million dollars. If we just build a swimming pool, maybe we can do that with 6 million dollars. If we want more than that, then we need partners. The question is who and how do we make that happen. Mr. McIff gave the Council a rendering of the College’s master plan. He also gave them a suggested layout for a new recreation facility with a main floor and a second floor if we decide that we want to go beyond a swimming pool. He knows that the Mayor favors a facility that would serve more needs than just swimming.
One of the difficulties with just having a swimming pool is that there is no way Mr. McIff knows that we could get help from the State of Utah on that. The State is not in the business of funding swimming pools, but they are in the business of developing or helping in the development of community development centers. If we can demonstrate that we are moving beyond just the realm of swimming; we stand a good chance of getting some assistance from the State. We do not have a lot of time to do that if we are going to try and get help this coming year. Senator Okerlund and Representative Albrecht could clarify what the likelihood is. Mr. McIff reported that the Legislature has some surplus funds and early in January they will be talking about what they do with those surplus funds. If we were ready, we have a shot at getting some money and perhaps some significant money to help if we are going to build a recreation facility.
Senator Okerlund stated that we would have to have almost everything else in place to be able to turn to the Legislature for the final piece. Having something to sell other than a swimming pool is going to be really important to go before that committee.
Councilmember Burrows talked about the feasibility study that the City did about 6 years ago. It was sent out in the water bills and the response back was 35%. The Council was told that this was a huge response for the type of survey that was done. At the time, the residents were willing to fund about 4 million dollars for a new pool. He believed that there would probably be more support for something like this now than there would have been then.
Councilmember Barnett felt that one of the problems that needed to be addressed is that we at a Council have not come to a decision because we have not discussed it as to how much we feel that we could increase the tax burden on the citizens of Richfield to build a new recreation facility that includes a swimming pool, if that is the direction we want to go. There are concerns in terms of location; we know if we want State help that we will have to build it someplace where the State is willing to fund which may not be our first choice. We are aware that we are going to have to go to the citizens of Richfield for likely an increase in property tax. If the County is going to be one of the partners in the project, then the citizens of Richfield are going to be taxed by the County as well for the project, so we need to come to some sort of an agreement as to what the balance of that is going to be so that is equitable for the citizens of Richfield. If the County decides not to participate or if we can only get 1½ million dollars from outside donors, then we need to be able to say what type of a facility we could now build. If the facility that we can build with partners is a 10 million dollar facility, is that a facility that is going to have enough bits and pieces and parts to fulfill what the Legislature is going to want in terms of being a regional or economic driving facility. Building the thing is one things, but operating and maintaining it is something else altogether. We need to know where those ongoing funds are going to come from.
We also need to consider what the payback period is going to be over the money that we are going to have to borrow as a City to do this. If we pay it back over a period of 40 years, the current facility is not quite 40 years old yet and it is on its last leg. So there are these types of things that we need to come up with.
What we need to look at as a Council is if we are willing to encumber our citizens to the tune of $100 per household per year for the next 30 years to build this facility.
Mr. McIff understood that the City’s payments on the golf course were such that we would be free from that in a year or two. Then we could largely handle the 6 million dollars without a tax increase. That could play into it, according to Councilmember Barnett, but those monies would come available in 3 or 4 years. It would cover a portion of it. The other thing Mr. McIff understood is that last year the City’s cost of maintenance on the existing facility was $246,000. Councilmember Nielson corrected that figure stating it was $400,000 last year.
Mr. McIff stated that the anticipation here is that the maximum exposure, based on the architect’s estimates would be about $248,000 a year for maintenance an operation. So is should be less than we are now spending. Councilmember Barnett stated that would not include wages. Pat Wilson stated that the numbers going out of the facility that is similar to what we are discussing is $959,000.
Mayor Ogden stated that right now Springville is hoping 70% recovery. Given our situation, the best that we could plan on is 50/50 which would be 50% recovery. Mr. Wilson talked with the architect about the Springville facility and there are some operational costs and some facility cost savings that we could make, as for the design, that are significant.
Councilmember Nielson is worried about some kind of a funding source to make sure that we have operation and maintenance costs for the next 50 years and on a facility that size, to be able to plan that far in advance to make sure we are covered because she does not want to see us have to shut down because we cannot afford it.
It is Richard Yardley’s observation that most major cities throughout the State, both big and small, are all developing recreation facilities because they can get money from the Legislature and they can get money from outside sources. When he lived in Bluffdale, they built the Herriman Recreation Center. A lot of that facility was funded by Sorenson. Mr. Sorenson had 20 billion dollars in assets when he died a few years ago. That money is all allocated back to the communities of the people who are willing to after the money. There is no maximum for what you can apply for through those people. If you can proof that there is going to be some sort of art or including the Headstart program to facilitate children’s education or if it is associated with the College. They could give us a significant amount of money.
There was some discussion about Councilmember Nielson’s concern that in a few years the College may take over the facility and then the City would not have the say about programming for the residents needs, especially where they are being taxed for payment of the facility. Mr. Yardley stated that the more entities involved and if there was proof that this was going to be a regional facility, it would be much easier to secure private funding sources. Mr. McIff stated that it has been anticipated up front that the agreement would recognize that Richfield City would operate the day by day management of the facility.
Councilmember Burrows did not believe that it would be possible to get all of the funding sources in place in time to go to the Legislature in January. Representative Albrecht agreed with Councilmember Burrows stating that realistically it would be better to go to the Legislature the following January. Representative Albrecht stated that another party he felt should be considered is the School District.
Councilmember Burrows suggested this project could be doable if we could get an 8 million dollar grant from CIB; he knew that they gave Mt. Pleasant 2.5 million dollars for a pool; and in doing so, get the City’s portion down to 4 million dollars. That would mean we would have to get 14 million in private donation and grant, then it would be 4 million for the City, 4 million from the County and 4 million from the legislature.
Commissioner Ogden stated that he would like to mull this around a little because there are lots of things to consider. He could not speak for the other 2 commissioners, but he thought the College would need to be on board. He also felt that the School District needs to have some skin in the game.
Pat Wilson suggested that we needed to look at this from the stand point of time line of when this would actually take place. The construction window is 18 months so we would not have payments on this project until 2021. We would have to have funds to expend for the design phase. So if the City says we are committed to this and the County is committed to this we might be able to go to the Legislature and say that we are committed to this time line and that might be the best we can do at this point. Maybe they would accept that and maybe they would not. We are going to have to put together as comprehensive of a concept plan that we can and get commitments from people because the money is just not going to flow that fast. We are not going to need the money until 2020. We have to look at when we are going to expend this and when we are actually have to start repaying this. The design will take time.
We need to decide when we want to have this open and work back from there. Mayor Ogden asked the Council if they would be okay if we pursue a completion of whatever type of project we want and set a date and then work backwards from where we are now. He would like to approach the County early in January and then we could go to the Legislature. Councilmember Barnett stated that if we are serious about this that is what we have to do.
12. OTHER BUSINESS. The Council thought the Yard Sale board looked good.
13. MEETING ADJOURNED. At 9:40 p.m., Motion: Adjourn, Action: Approved, Moved by Kathy Christensen, Seconded by Connie Nielson. Vote: Motion carried by unanimous roll call vote (summary: Yea = 5). Yea: Kevin Arrington, Bryan Burrows, Richard Barnett, Kathy Christensen, Connie Nielson.
PASSED and APPROVED this 23 day of October, 2018.