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SPECIAL MEETING OF THE COMMON COUNCIL
OF THE CITY OF EL MIRAGE
EL MIRAGE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL
13500 N. EL MIRAGE ROAD
6:00 P.M., THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 30, 2006
I. CALL TO ORDER – The meeting was called to order by Mayor Fred Waterman at 6:00 P.M. Council led the public in the Pledge of Allegiance and a Moment of Silence.
II. ROLL CALL – Present were: Mayor Fred Waterman, Vice Mayor Michele Kern, Councilor Roy Delgado, Councilor Bill Conner, City Manager B.J. Cornwall, Attorney Fredda Bisman, City Engineer Chris Young, Assistant Police Chief Ken Holmes, Fire Chief Scott Alvord, Finance Director Larry Price, City Clerk Edith Hoover. Absent: Councilor Xavier Bedolla, Councilor Rick Monzon.
III. REGULAR AGENDA
A. Consideration and action approving the Regular Council Minutes of November 9, 2006.
Councilor Bill Conner made a motion to approve the Minutes; seconded by Councilor Roy Delgado.
VOTE: Yea: Conner, Delgado, Kern, Waterman
Absent: Bedolla, Monzon
B. Presentation of the Oath of Office to Roger Cleveland, Bill Conner, Michele Kern, Adam Super and Fred Waterman.
IV. ADJOURNMENT – The Mayor adjourned the meeting and asked for the new roll call.
V. ROLL CALL – Present were: Mayor Fred Waterman, Vice Mayor Michele Kern, Councilor Roy Delgado, Councilor Roger Cleveland, Councilor Bill Conner, Councilor Adam Super, City Manager B.J. Cornwall, Attorney Fredda Bisman, City Engineer Chris Young, Assistant Police Chief Ken Holmes, Fire Chief Scott Alvord, Finance Director Larry Price, City Clerk Edith Hoover. Absent: Councilor Xavier Bedolla.
VI. CONSENT AGENDA
1. Consideration and action regarding Resolution No. R06-11-34, declaring as a public record that certain document titled “Chapter 7 – Adoption of International Property Maintenance Code”.
2. Consideration and action regarding Ordinance No. O06-11-23, adopting and making a part of the El Mirage City Code that certain document titled “Chapter 7 – Adoption of International Property Maintenance Code” and declared to be a public record by Resolution No. R06-11-34.
3. Consideration and action regarding Ordinance No. O06-11-21, amending the title of Chapter 20 from “Chapter 20 – Nuisance” to “Chapter 20 – Nuisance and Neighborhood Preservation”.
4. Consideration and action regarding Resolution No. R06-11-33, declaring as a public record that certain document titled “Chapter 20, Nuisance and Neighborhood Preservation”.
5. Consideration and action regarding Ordinance No. O06-11-22, adopting and making a part of the El Mirage City Code that certain document title “Chapter 20 Nuisance and Neighborhood Preservation” and declared to be a public record by Resolution No. R06-11-33.
6. Consideration and action regarding Resolution No. R06-11-35, declaring as a public record that certain document titled “Chapter 6 – Animals Barking Dogs”.
7. Consideration and action regarding Ordinance No. O06-11-24, adopting and making a part of the El Mirage City Code that certain document titled “Chapter 6 Animals Barking Dogs” and declared to be a public record by Resolution No. R06-11-35.
8. Consideration and action regarding entering into an intergovernmental Agreement for DUI Enforcement with the Governors Office of Highway Safety. The grant provides for $45,000 dollars in Federal funds.
9. Consideration and action regarding entering into an Intergovernmental Agreement between the Dysart Unified School District No. 89 and the City of El Mirage, Arizona. The agreement funds a City of El Mirage Police Officer to be placed as the School Resource Officer “SRO” to be placed at the Dysart Schools.
10. Consideration and action regarding Resolution No. R06-11-36, declaring as a public record that certain document entitled “Chapter 5 – City Court”.
11. Consideration and action regarding Ordinance No. O06-11-25, amending a part of the El Mirage City Code that certain document titled “Chapter 5 –
City Court” and declared to be a public record by Resolution No. R06-11- 36.
12. Consideration and action regarding Resolution No. R06-11-37, declaring as a public record that certain document titled “Chapter 1 General”.
13. Consideration and action regarding Ordinance No. O06-11-24, adopting and making a part of the El Mirage City Code that certain document titled “Chapter 1 General” and declared to be a public record by Resolution No. R06-11-37.
Councilor Roy Delgado made a motion to approve the consent agenda items; seconded by Vice Mayor Michele Kern.
VOTE: Yea: Cleveland, Conner, Delgado, Kern, Super, Waterman
VII. MAYOR’S COMMENTS
Mayor Fred Waterman said that with the passage of the Consent Agenda items, it has brought the City of El Mirage Code to the level of surrounding Cities.
Fred Waterman thanked Bill Conner, Judge Lester and City of El Mirage employees for their diligent work.
The Mayor introduced the Cities two new prosecutors, Tom and Mike Parascandola and said that the City is very happy to have them.
VIII. REGULAR AGENDA
A. Consideration and action regarding the nomination and approval of a Vice Mayor.
Councilor Bill Conner made a motion to approve Michele Kern as Vice Mayor; seconded by Councilor Adam Super.
B. Consideration and action approving the City of El Mirage Code of Conduct for Elected Officials.
City Manager BJ Cornwall said that the City Advisory Committee worked really hard and came up with an excellent Code of Ethics.
BJ Cornwall stated that there was an error in the “Gifts” section of the document. The “no” criteria was left out. This has been fixed and the public has the corrected copy.
Trent Kubasiak, 11845 W. Cortez St, El Mirage Arizona. Trent stated that he is a member of the Citizen Advisory Committee and that the Committee created the El Mirage Code of Ethics by taking a look at what other Cities in the Valley have done. This allowed the committee to pick and choose what they thought was best for the City.
Trent congratulated the City Council for bringing up the issue and realizing the need for a Code of Ethics.
Mayor Fred Waterman thanked the Citizen Advisory Committee and Trent Kubasiak for putting together the Code of Ethics.
Councilor Conner made a motion to approve the Code of Conduct; seconded by Councilor Super.
C. Presentation of a “Together Against Graffiti” (TAG) Update by Linda Kleiner.
Linda Kleiner, 12314 N 127th Lane, El Mirage Arizona. Linda said that the “Together Against Graffiti” (TAG) program has received an award from Keep America Beautiful as the best Graffiti program in the U.S.A.
Linda thanked the Elected Officials, Police Department, Code Enforcement, Courts, schools and everyone else that worked together to make the (TAG) program a success.
The first place award from Keep America Beautiful was $1,000. This money was used to purchase a laptop computer and a $6,000 state of the art motion detector that will take photographs of “Taggers”.
Linda passed out awards to Anthony Kern from Code Enforcement, Ken Holmes from the Police Station, Mike Donovan from Surprise Police Department, City Manager BJ Cornwall, Mayor Fred Waterman and Vice Mayor Michele Kern.
D. Presentation by Maricopa County Department of Transportation relevant to the El Mirage Road proposed corridor alignment.
Renee Probst, County Project Manager for the El Mirage Road corridor study stated that there are five main needs for the proposed widening of El Mirage Road from Northern Ave. to Bell Road. 1) El Mirage Road is discontinuous through the El Mirage community. 2) El Mirage Road supports traffic from El Mirage, Surprise, Sun City and Glendale. 3) The surrounding land use is transforming from rural to high density urban. 4) The City of El Mirage needs better connectivity to the surrounding freeway system. 5) El Mirage Road is projected to support over 40,000 vehicles per day south of Bell Road by 2026.
Renee explained that the study purpose was to determine a viable alternative to provide better north-south capacity and north-south connectivity in the El Mirage Road study area, develop a consensus driven vision for the El Mirage Road Corridor, identify corridor deficiencies and requirements and generate technically feasible alternatives.
The study was initiated in June of 2005. The next phase of the project consists of presenting study findings/recommendations to the public which will take place on December 6, 2006. In January, 2007, the finalization of the Corridor Study Report will take place.
Roberta Crow, Public Information Officer for Maricopa County Department of Transportation and Right-Roads Program Manager said that the Right-Roads program houses the public outreach and public involvement activities.
Roberta said that the first public meeting held on September 26, 2005 had 48 people in attendance. The second public meeting on February 14, 2006 had 75 people in attendance. The last meeting is scheduled for December 6, 2006.
Barry Lane from Kirk and Michaels said that eight different alternatives and five different alignments regarding this project were evaluated. All alternatives except for the proposed widening of El Mirage Road were eliminated based on the study findings that the alternatives would cost too much, failed to serve regional traffic and also didn’t address the future safety and capacity demands of El Mirage Road.
The El Mirage Road proposal currently consists of adding the extra road on the east side of El Mirage Road. The 38 homes on this side of the road will be purchased as well as the Church and the Rio Mirage restaurant. The old El Mirage Road would then be used as a frontage road.
Gary Scott, Land Acquisition Manager for the Public Works Land and Right of Way Division said that property acquisition happens in a few separate phases. First of all, the property owner receives a written offer based on market value. Upon acceptance of the offer, escrow is opened. Title clearance and close of escrow then takes place. A 90 day (minimum) notice to vacate is issued.
Coral Sheanter, Relocation Assistance Program said that the occupants of the home must be legal occupants of the United States, owned/occupied the residence for more than 180 days, owner in occupancy 90 to 179 days and a tenant in occupancy for 90 days or more.
Coral stated that all escrow, incidental and moving costs will be paid for. Each case is viewed independently.
Renee Probst exclaimed that the County will manage all stages of the project. The next phase consists of the design/concept phase and implemention of an advanced right of way acquisition plan. The total funding will be $35 million. The last public hearing meeting will be on December 6, 2006.
The Mayor asked the Maricopa County Department of Transportation Board what is the purpose of the project and who will be relieved of the traffic.
Renee Probst said that both regional and local areas will be relieved from traffic.
The Mayor inquired about the benefits to the City with the expansion of El Mirage Road.
Renee stated that the El Mirage Road expansion would make the road safer and would also create a direct route to move within and beyond the City.
The Mayor asked whether or not the City of Surprise will be helping to pay the costs of this El Mirage Road corridor.
Renee said that as far as she knows, the City of Surprise is a willing participant in this road alignment project.
Roberta clarified that a “yes” vote would allow the Study to go to the next phase, which is the design phase. At any point before the IGA is signed, the City of El Mirage has a right of refusal.
Vice Mayor Michele Kern said that the El Mirage Road corridor alignment project would better serve residents by allowing them to travel more safely to and from work and would also enhance economic growth in the City.
Councilor Roy Delgado stated that a possible solution other than improving El Mirage Road would be to improve Dysart Road and use the river as an alternative.
Councilor Bill Conner stated that if El Mirage Road is improved, it would attract businesses to the City of El Mirage which would help build the tax-base that would then ultimately improve public services to the citizens of the City.
Councilor Adam Super clarified that the El Mirage Road corridor alignment project is currently an idea and would allow for modification and/or remittal at any stage in the future.
Renee Probst responded that it is currently in the conceptual phase and that the City has the right to remit at a later period.
Cindy Gentry 13813 N. El Mirage Road. Cynthia said that she has resided in her house for 40 years and doesn’t believe that it is fair to be relocated to another house in order to expand El Mirage Road.
Mary Izaguirre. Mary said that she doesn’t see traffic problems on El Mirage Road but rather on Thunderbird Road. She believes that Dysart Road would be a better option.
Robin Freberg, 12520 W. Desert Cove. Robert said that his main problem with the El Mirage Road proposal was that he wasn’t notified of previous meetings held on the matter. He has not received a door hanger or been notified by mail of meetings.
Rosa Cisneros El Mirage Road. Rosa questioned how is the increased traffic on El Mirage Road going to help the safety of the kids.
Consuela Vasquez lives in Surprise but has a brother-in-law that lives on Alto Street. Consuela believes that the City is attacking the poor since they are “uneducated” and can’t “fight back”. She is concerned for those people who will need to move because they won’t be able to afford a new home. Consuela believes that other options, such as the river, should be looked into more thoroughly.
Coral explained that the houses are appraised by fair market value just like other homes in the area.
Scottie Gentry, 13813 N. El Mirage Road. Scottie is a third generation El Mirage resident. Large families have been born and raised in these El Mirage homes. She believes that if these homes are demolished, it will take away their roots and livelihood. No money can compensate them for the value of their homes.
Mayor Fred Waterman called for the end of public comment and asked for a roll-call vote.
E. Consideration and action regarding the proposed El Mirage Road corridor alignment.
Councilor Roger Cleveland made a motion to approve the El Mirage Road corridor alignment; seconded by Councilor Conner.
VOTE: Yea: Cleveland, Conner, Kern, Super, Waterman
IX. EXECUTIVE SESSION
No Executive session has been requested.
Councilor Conner made a motion to adjourn at 7:50 p.m.; seconded by Councilor Super.