City Council Minutes

Thursday, February 1,2001



ST. GEORGE CITY COUNCIL MINUTES REGULAR MEETING FEBRUARY 1, 2001, 4:00 P.M. CITY COUNCIL CHAMBERS PRESENT: Mayor Daniel McArthur Councilmember Sharon Isom Councilmember Suzanne Allen Councilmember Rod Orton Councilmember Bob Whatcott Councilmember Larry Gardner City Manager Gary Esplin City Attorney Jonathan Wright City Recorder Gay Cragun OPENING: Mayor McArthur called the meeting to order and welcomed all in attendance. The invocation was offered by Jonathan Wright and the flag salute was led by Sharon Isom. DIXIE MODERN PIONEER AWARDS: Mayor McArthur presented Dixie Modern Pioneer awards to Sammy and Pat Irvin for their contribution to the Elks Lodge Veterans’ Memorial, and to Lee Warren as the driving force behind the Veteran’s Memorial at the Tonaquint Cemetery. APPOINTMENT OF CHIEF OF POLICE: Mayor McArthur recommended the appointment of Marlon Stratton as the permanent Chief of Police. He will be sworn in by Judge Shumate on Friday, February 2 at 3:00 p.m. at the police building. A motion was made by Councilmember Isom to appoint Interim Chief of Police Marlon Stratton as the Chief of Police. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Allen. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Orton - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. Chief Stratton introduced his wife, Diane, and expressed appreciation for the City Council’s support and vote of confidence. He advised he was proud to work with the men and women of the Police Department who are dedicated to their profession and maintaining the quality of life St. George residents currently enjoy. Councilmember Allen was excused from the meeting. AWARD OF BID: Consider award of bid for the construction of a concession and restroom building at the tennis complex. Parks Superintendent Lynne Scott recommended award of the bid for Alternate #1 to the low bidder, Bateman Hall, for construction of the concession and restroom building at the City’s tennis complex in the amount of $62,180. Alternate #1 consists of wood columns instead of steel to match the rest of the facility. The time frame for completion of construction is mid-April. A motion to award the bid to the low bidder, Bateman Hall, in the amount of $62,180 was made by Councilmember Gardner. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Isom. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. St. George City Council Minutes February 1, 2001 Page Two INTRODUCTION OF SCOUTS: Mayor McArthur invited Scouts from Troop 620 to introduce themselves. ABANDONMENT ORDINANCE: Consider approval of an ordinance abandoning a portion of the platted roadway on River Road adjacent to the Virgin River bridge. A motion to abandon by ordinance a portion of the platted roadway on River Road adjacent to the Virgin River bridge for use in the City’s trail system was made by Councilmember Gardner. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Whatcott. Mayor McArthur called for a roll call vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye Councilmember Isom - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. ABANDONMENT ORDINANCE: Consider approval of an ordinance vacating a portion of 750 North between 2750 East and 3050 East. City Manager Gary Esplin explained that staff recommends approval of this request with the caveat that other roadways in the area be completed. The property will be deeded to adjacent property owners. A motion was made by Councilmember Orton to abandon by ordinance a portion of 750 North Street between 2750 East and 3050 East. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Isom. Mayor McArthur called for a roll call vote, as follows: Councilmember Orton - aye Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Gardner - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. ABANDONMENT ORDINANCE: Consider approval of an ordinance abandoning a portion of 1470 South at the intersection of 1790 South as dedicated and Blackridge Drive as being constructed. City Manager Gary Esplin explained that a new road which will connect to the new Black Ridge Commercial Center will leave a portion of excess dedicated right-of-way. Mr. Kimball is requesting that this property be deeded to him as he is the adjacent property owner. Staff recommends approval. A motion was made by Councilmember Whatcott to approve the abandonment by ordinance as requested. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Orton. Mayor McArthur called for a roll call vote, as follows: Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Isom - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. ABANDONMENT RESOLUTION: Consider approval of a resolution abandoning a portion of a 20’ drainage easement located within the boundary of Lot 14, Bloomington Country Club No. 8 Subdivision. City Manager Gary Esplin advised that many years ago an easement was platted through this lot for drainage which made the lot unuseable. Since that time the road was improved but the drainage easement was never used. City engineers St. George City Council Minutes February 1, 2001 Page Three have reviewed the request and advise there is no reason to maintain the easement as all drainage is taken care of through the side yard easements. They therefore recommend approval of the request. Councilmember Isom made a motion to approve by resolution the abandonment of the easement as requested. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Orton. Mayor McArthur called for a roll call vote, as follows: Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Orton - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Gardner - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. ABANDONMENT RESOLUTION: Consider approval of a resolution abandoning an existing easement between Lots 34 and 35 of the Eastridge No. 2 Subdivision. City Manager Gary Esplin advised the applicant would like to combine two lots into one and has agreed to provide other easements to replace the existing easement. Staff recommends approval. A motion was made by Councilmember Whatcott to abandon the easement by resolution as requested. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Orton. Mayor McArthur called for roll call vote, as follows: Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Gardner - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. SET PUBLIC HEARING: Associate Planner Mark Bradley advised that the Planning Commission, at its meeting held January 23, 2001, recommended that a public hearing not be scheduled to consider a zone change from PD Commercial to C-2 on the triangular-shaped parcel of property bounded by Bluff Street on the west, Diagonal Street on the north, and 700 West on the east, and including the Sonic Burger restaurant. Norman Fawson is the applicant. The applicant is appealing the decision of the Planning Commission and requests that the matter be scheduled for a public hearing on March 1, 2001 at 5:00 p.m. Councilmember Isom made a motion that the matter not be scheduled for a public hearing. The motion died for lack of a second. Mr. Bradley advised that the applicant wishes the zone change to be addressed as the property currently is without realignment of the road, and he is willing to set land use restrictions similar to the approved PD to satisfy neighbors’ concerns. City Attorney Jonathan Wright advised land use restrictions could be established in a C-2 zone if done voluntarily by the applicant through a development agreement between the applicant and the City. Councilmember Gardner commented that the desire of the property owner should be respected and a public hearing scheduled. This would also allow neighbors an opportunity to be heard again. City Manager Gary Esplin explained the issue revolved around access. PD uses are very specific, and the applicant wants to be able to market the property for uses not approved as part of the PD zone. Councilmember Gardner made a motion that the public hearing be scheduled. The motion died for lack of a second. The public hearing will not be scheduled. St. George City Council Minutes February 1, 2001 Page Four REQUEST FOR TEMPORARY RV STORAGE: Associate Planner Mark Bradley advised that the Planning Commission, at its meeting held January 23, 2001, recommended approval of RV storage on the west side of the Vista Ridge project located at 1331 N. Dixie Downs Road on a temporary basis on unimproved lots #170, 171, 172, and 157B. The Planning Commission recommended approval for a period of two years with a review at the end of this two year period, and to amend the number seven item from the list of rules from the sheet referred to as Rules of Parking an RV in Vista Ridge by the Homeowners Association Board. Additionally, the Planning Commission recommended approval for up to ten RVs as requested with discontinuation of the use at any time if requested by the City. The parking area will be graveled. The Vista Ridge Homeowners’ Association is the applicant. A motion to approve the use as requested was made by Councilmember Gardner subject to a review by the City in two years and subject to the condition that the use be discontinued if requested by the City. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Isom. AMENDED PRELIMINARY PLAT: Associate Planner Mark Bradley advised that the Planning Commission, at its meeting held January 23, 2001, recommended approval of the amended preliminary plat for a portion of the former Southern Oaks Estates preliminary plat to allow a realignment of 1100 South, a master planned road, and to update the new project name to Countryside Subdivision. Clayton Leavitt is the applicant. Mr. Bradley explained the background of the Southern Oaks Estates project. The applicant is requesting permission to realign the road to jog through his property and back down to 1100 South. The City Engineer has reviewed this proposal and recommends approval. City Manager Gary Esplin explained that the City Engineer feels the realignment of the road will have a traffic-calming effect. Clayton Leavitt, applicant, advised that the old configuration of the subdivision and roadway rendered one lot unuseable, but the new proposed plan utilizes a culdesac and eliminates the non-useable lot. City staff is supportive of the new plan, and Mr. Leavitt advised he is working with adjacent property owners to solve a drainage problem in the area. Mayor McArthur commented that while he did not care for the new road configuration, the applicant would still be using existing roads in the area. A motion to approve the amended preliminary plat and allow realignment of 1100 South was made by Councilmember Gardner. Councilmember Whatcott expressed concern that by approving the new road configuration the City would be adding to a helter-skelter road system in the area. City Manager Gary Esplin commented that the road through the applicant’s project would only be used by the neighborhood. The motion to approve the plat was seconded by Councilmember Isom. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Orton - aye Councilmember Whatcott - no The motion carried. CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT: Consider a request for a conditional use permit for a new Washington County School District Administration Office building to be located on the southwest corner of 100 West and Tabernacle. The building will be 41.7 feet in height. Washington County School District, applicant. St. George City Council Minutes February 1, 2001 Page Five Associate Planner Mark Bradley advised that the Planning Commission, at its meeting held January 23, 2001, recommended approval of a conditional use permit for (1) a new building for the Washington County School District Administration Office to be located on the southwest corner of 100 West and Tabernacle intersection, and (2) to allow the building to be 41 feet in height. He advised that parking requirements will be met. Councilmember Allen returned to the meeting. A motion was made by Councilmember Gardner to approve the conditional use permit and exceed the height limit in the ordinance to 41 feet. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Orton. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Orton - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. 72 HOUR LIQUOR PERMIT: Consider a request for a 72 hour liquor permit for the Association of Partners of Public Lands for a convention at the Dixie Center on March 12, 13, and 14. A motion was made by Councilmember Isom to approve the request. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Whatcott. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Allen - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. INTRODUCTION OF SCOUTS: Mayor McArthur invited Scouts from Troop 383 to introduce themselves. BREAK: Mayor McArthur called for a five minute break. The meeting then resumed with Councilmember Whatcott absent from the stand. RESTAURANT LIQUOR AND BEER LICENSE: Consider a request for a restaurant liquor and beer license for The Claimjumper located at 1110 South Bluff Street. Tammy Ringwood, applicant. City Manager Gary Esplin advised the application had been reviewed and staff recommends approval. A motion was made by Councilmember Orton to approve the request. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Isom. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Orton - aye Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Gardner - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. St. George City Council Minutes February 1, 2001 Page Six PUBLIC HEARING/ORDINANCE: Public hearing to consider a proposed employment services agreement with the City Manager. Mayor McArthur read a statement concerning the City Manager Employment Services Agreement. Councilmember Orton commented that Mr. Esplin was the most talented City Manager in the State of Utah and a pleasure to work with. He advised that seven cities in Utah were used to formulate an average for his proposed salary. He complimented Mr. Esplin on his 25 years of service to the City. City Attorney Jonathan Wright reviewed the terms and key elements of the agreement. He explained the agreement is for a four year period, and Mr. Esplin could be terminated with or without cause at any time. If he is terminated without cause, he would be entitled to a severance package of six months’ compensation. If he was terminated with cause, the severance benefits would not be available to him. During the four year period his employment is exclusive with the City. Councilmember Orton proposed that Mr. Esplin’s salary be set at approximately $107,000, and with retirement, social security and other benefits, total compensation would bring the package to $139,698, plus an annual car allowance of $5,400 and a local gas card for business use. The cities used to calculate the average proposed salary were Layton, Sandy, West Valley, Orem, Provo, Bountiful, and West Jordan. He suggested these seven cities be used each year to adjust Mr. Esplin’s salary. Mayor McArthur explained this agreement was brought forth by the City Council, and results in an increase to Mr. Esplin’s salary of 6%. City Attorney Jonathan Wright pointed out that the proposed salary for Mr. Esplin will put him at an average in the state, and not at the top. At the same time, Mr. Esplin is the longest serving City Manager in the State of Utah. He explained that St. George is a unique full-service City, unlike many in the State, with its own water department, power department, and municipal airport, which greatly increase Mr. Esplin’s responsibilities and work load. Mayor McArthur commented that if Mr. Esplin had to be replaced, the City would be paying a lot more in compensation for someone of Mr. Esplin’s caliber. He recommended approval of the contract, and opened the public hearing. There being no public comment, he closed the public hearing. Councilmember Allen commented that Mr. Esplin is a legend in the State of Utah and has received awards for managing the best-run City in the State. Additionally, he is recognized and respected by his peers as being one of the top City Managers in the State. Councilmember Isom commented Mr. Esplin had survived three different mayors and many different City Council members, which is a testimony to what a good man he is. Councilmember Gardner commented that Mr. Esplin has handled many difficult issues over the years. He made a motion to approve, by ordinance, the agreement as presented. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Orton. Mayor McArthur called for a roll call vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Orton - aye Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Allen - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. PURCHASE POLICE EQUIPMENT AS PART OF BLOCK GRANT PROGRAM: Consider approval to purchase equipment as part of the Police Department Block Grant program. St. George City Council Minutes February 1, 2001 Page Seven City Manager Gary Esplin advised that the City is the recipient of grants totaling $68,637 which require a City match of $6,864 to purchase needed items for the Police Department. A motion was made by Councilmember Gardner to approve match of the Block Grant in the amount of $6,864 to purchase equipment for the Police Department. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Isom. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Orton - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. PUBLIC INVOLVEMENT PROCESS IN DIXIE TRANSPORTATION PLANNING PROJECT: Consider approval of the public involvement process for the Dixie Transportation Planning Project. Public Works Director Larry Bulloch advised that the document defines the process by which all parties who are interested in transportation planning can have input. It defines the public involvement procedure which requires that all documents be available at the MPO office, on the web site, and at retail copy centers. The process will be advertised in the newspaper through legal ads, annual open houses will be used, and committees, work groups, and task forces will be used. Presentations will be made to public officials, councils, commissions, and a mailing list will be created. Formal public hearings will follow the public involvement process as required by federal guidelines, with the goal of doing business in an open and straightforward manner so that all will feel the process is available to them for comment on proposed projects and to propose ideas for projects to be considered. Councilmember Whatcott returned to the stand. Mr. Bulloch advised that the process will involve the public from start to finish, with an effort to be totally open and encourage input from all sectors of the public. Elected officials from Ivins, Santa Clara, Washington and St. George will serve, along with a UDOT commissioner, to comprise the executive committee who will make executive decisions. There will also be ad hoc committee members, and a technical committee to make recommendations to the executive committee. A trails committee is also recommended. All cities will be contributing small amounts with the primary contribution from UDOT. Mr. Bulloch commended John Williams of Five County Association of Governments for his initiative in securing a three-year UDOT grant to pay the salary of the new transportation planner, Lowell Elmer, who will give guidance through the process and develop documents for use in the program. Once the City receives MPO status, the MPO will then provide $100,000 a year for planning and $500,000-$600,000 in actual construction funds. All entitlements are based on a population formula. The City is expected to receive MPO status is 2002. Another year will be required after that before the MPO boundary is designated by the Governor, and until that time, the paperwork will be prepared and completed. Councilmember Gardner made a motion to approve the public involvement process as requested. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Allen. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Orton - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. St. George City Council Minutes February 1, 2001 Page Eight Mr. Bulloch then presented a proposed logo for the Dixie Metropolitan Planning Organization. The City Council expressed their approval of the logo. INTERLOCAL AGREEMENT RE SNOW CANYON WATER PROJECT: Consider approval of an interlocal agreement regarding the Snow Canyon Water Project. This item was tabled. DROUGHT MANAGEMENT CONSERVATION PLAN POLICY: Consider approval of a policy regarding a culinary water supply/shortage and drought management conservation plan. City Manager Gary Esplin advised that the Water and Power Board recommended approval of this policy. Water and Power Director Wayne McArthur explained the policy which implements a four stage water conservation plan in the event of a water shortage or drought. Councilmember Allen suggested the policy be inserted in utility bills to let the public know of its implementation. City Manager Gary Esplin advised the City will hire a water conservation officer and share the salary jointly with the Washington County Water Conservancy District. A motion to approve the policy as presented was made by Councilmember Gardner. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Isom. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orto - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. AGREEMENT FOR DEVELOPMENT OF THE SKYLINE DRIVE URBAN FISHING POND: Consider approval of an agreement between the City and the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources and the Southern Utah Anglers for development of the Skyline Drive Urban Fishing Pond. Water and Power Deputy Director Phil Solomon explained that the City, along with the Southern Utah Anglers and the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, is involved in development of the Skyline Pond as part of the City’s Urban Fishing Program. The Division of Wildlife Resources has provided a grant which will make funds available for a dock, pier, parking lot, restrooms, landscaping, grading, and other items necessary to spruce up the pond. This agreement will make it possible for the Division of Wildlife Resources to immediately provide $59,417. A motion to approve the agreement as presented was made by Councilmember Orton. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Isom. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Orton - aye Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye Councilmember Allen - aye EMERGENCY ACTION PLANS FOR DAMS: Consider approval of a memorandum of understanding regarding emergency action plans for the Warner Draw, Andrus, and Stucki Dams. City Manager Gary Esplin advised that these drainage structures have been effective in preventing flood damage downstream and must be maintained. Irrigation companies who previously operated the dams no longer want to be involved due to the many regulations by the State. It is proposed that the City, St. George City Council Minutes February 1, 2001 Page Nine Washington County, and Washington City enter into an agreement to share the cost for Alpha Engineering to do what is necessary to bring the dams into conformance with State requirements. A motion to approve the agreement as presented was made by Councilmember Isom. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Allen. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye Councilmember Gardner - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. DONATION OF PROPERTY: Consider acceptance of properties donated to the City of St. George. This item was tabled. RESOLUTION GRANTING CONSERVATION EASEMENT: Consider approval of a resolution granting a conservation easement on the lizabeth Adams property located southwest of the River Road bridge. City Manager Gary Esplin explained this resolution will grant a conservation easement on Elizabeth Adams’ property located southwest of the River Road bridge. He explained that in settlement of a dispute with the Division of Water Quality, and in lieu of a fine, the City agreed it would purchase properties which will be environmentally beneficial to the Virgin River. The property will be maintained for this purpose. A motion to approve the easement by resolution was made by Councilmember Whatcott. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Gardner. City Attorney Jonathan Wright explained the conservation easement will allow for naturalist education and public recreation. Mayor McArthur called for a roll call vote, as follows: Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Allen - aye Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Orton - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. CHANGE ODER FOR PAINTING OF BLOOMINGTON HILLS UPPER WATER TANK: Consider approval of a change order to the contract with State Painting for painting of the Bloomington Hills Upper Water Tank. City Manager Gary Esplin explained that when bids were obtained for painting several of the City’s water tanks, they were over budget so painting of several of the tanks was eliminated from the project. In the meantime, an analysis of the tanks not painted was done, and staff feels it is important a change order be approved to paint the exterior of the Bloomington Hills Upper Water Tank as its condition is rapidly deteriorating. The change order is in the amount of $42,800 with State Painting, and if utilized, would save mobilization costs. The total of the contract with State Painting, including the change order, would be $265,598. A motion was made by Councilmember Gardner to approve the change order. The motion was seconded by Councilmember Isom. Mayor McArthur called for a vote, as follows: St. George City Council Minutes February 1, 2001 Page Ten Councilmember Gardner - aye Councilmember Isom - aye Councilmember Whatcott - aye Councilmember Orton - aye Councilmember Allen - aye The vote was unanimous and the motion carried. RESOLUTION ADOPTING STANDARD SPECIFICATIONS FOR DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION: Consider approval of a resolution adopting the City’s Standard Specifications for Design and Construction. City Manager Gary Esplin explained it is proposed that only one change to the City’s specifications concerning mountable or roll-back curbs be considered at this meeting, with the remainder of changes to the specifications considered at a later date. Staff is opposed to the proposed change allowing mountable curbs, as they feel the standard high-back curb provides safety benefits. However, staff would agree to a compromise if a 4’ landscape strip were required between the mountable curb and sidewalk to provide a safety buffer for pedestrians. Assistant City Engineer Jay Sandberg advised that Engineering staff’s position is that no modification of curbs be allowed on public streets as the high back curb is the best for the City in general. Councilmember Gardner advised it was his understanding the Southern Utah Homebuilders Association was not requesting mountable curbs on thoroughfares or collector roads, just in certain developments where they might be appropriate. Public Works Director Larry Bulloch advised the City currently permits mountable curbs in rural areas with large lots and in private developments where there is not a lot of competition for parking. He advised that most cities in the State do not allow mountable curbs and have backed off from their use because of problems they create. Assistant City Engineer Jay Sandberg advised that City staff strongly opposes allowing modified curbs with contiguous sidewalks or contiguous planter strips for the reason that high-back curbs deflect errant vehicles. Mountable curbs are currently allowed in private subdivisions with minimal through traffic. He advised that the Residential Streets Guide published by the American Homebuilders Association and American Society of Civil Engineers state that barrier curbs provide advantages and offer improved control of run-away vehicles. Mountable curbs may be more economical for builders, but a recent survey of various city engineers show