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Budget Hearing & Council Meeting Minutes - September 6, 2016

MIAMI SHORES VILLAGE

BUDGET HEARING – FISCAL YEAR 2016-2017

The Miami Shores Village Council conducted the first of two Public Hearings on the Fiscal Year 2017 millage rates and budgets on Tuesday, September 6, 2016 beginning at 6:30 PM. The Hearing was held in the Council Chambers of Village Hall with the following individuals present:

PRESENT:                        Alice Burch

                                           Steven Zelkowitz

                                           MacAdam Glinn

                                           Herta Holly

                                           Ivonne Ledesma

ALSO PRESENT:             Tom Benton, Village Manager

                                           Barbara Estep, Village Clerk

                                           Richard Sarafan, Village Attorney

PRESENTATION AND DISCUSSION OF THE PROPOSED BUDGET AND PROPOSED MILLAGE RATES (7.9000 AND .5054).

PUBLIC HEARINGS ON THE FOLLOWING TWO RESOLUTIONS:

A RESOLUTION OF THE MIAMI SHORES VILLAGE COUNCIL, MIAMI SHORES, FLORIDA, ADOPTING THE TENTATIVE LEVYING OF AD VALOREM TAXES FOR MIAMI SHORES VILLAGE FOR THE FISCAL YEAR 2017; PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.

Ms. Estep read the caption of the resolution into the record. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz moved to approve the Resolution adopting the tentative ad valorem tax levies for the 2017 fiscal year. Councilwoman Holly seconded the motion. Councilwoman Ledesma spoke of the time afforded to the process and her comfort level with the millage rates and budget. Mayor Burch opened the Public Hearing but as no one present wished to speak on the proposed tax rates; the Mayor closed the Public Hearing and called for the vote which was unanimous in favor of the motion.

A RESOLUTION OF THE MIAMI SHORES VILLAGE COUNCIL, MIAMI SHORES, FLORIDA, ADOPTING THE TENTATIVE BUDGETS FOR FISCAL YEAR 2017; AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.

Ms. Estep read the caption of the resolution into the record. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz moved to approve the Resolution adopting the tentative budgets for the 2017 fiscal year. Councilwoman Ledesma seconded the motion. Councilwoman Holly expressed her opinion that the proposed water fountains at Bayfront Park should be removed from the list of capital projects and rather the funds should be left in the budget but the project not pursued. Mayor Burch spoke of the discretionary funds included in the Mayor & Council budget and her belief that those funds will be a cushion at the end of the year as the majority of Council has indicated that they will not utilize the funds. Mayor Burch opened the Public Hearing on the proposed Budget. Resident Patrice Gillespie Smith suggested that the Council fund a part-time position for the MainStreet program. As no one else present wished to speak, the Mayor closed the Public Hearing and called for the vote which was 4 to 1 in favor of the motion, with Councilwoman Holly dissenting.

The first Public Hearing on the 2017 millage rates and budgets was adjourned at 6:43 PM.

MIAMI SHORES VILLAGE

REGULAR COUNCIL MEETING

The regularly scheduled Council Meeting of September 6, 2016 was called to order at 6:45 PM with all members of the Council present.

 

CONSIDERATIONS

1)       FINANCE DEPARTMENT                                                                        Holly Hugdahl

  1. PRESENTATION AND ACCEPTANCE OF THE 2015 COMPREHENSIVE ANNUAL FINANCIAL REPORT FOR THE FISCAL YEAR ENDING SEPTEMBER 30, 2015.

This item was deferred due to the absence of a representative of the auditing firm.

  1. AWARD OF BID FOR DISASTER RECOVERY MANAGEMENT & MONITORING SERVICES TO WITT/O’BRIEN’S.

Mr. Benton provided information regarding the storm related management and monitoring services required per FEMA regulations. Councilwoman Ledesma moved to award the contract to Witt/O’Brien’s per the bid documents submitted. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.  

2)           VILLAGE CLERK                                                                                   Barbara A. Estep

  1. APPROVAL OF THE JULY 12TH BUDGET WORKSHOP MINUTES AND THE JULY 19TH COUNCIL MEETING MINUTES.

Vice Mayor Zelkowitz moved approval of the Budget Workshop and Council Meeting Minutes as presented. Councilwoman Holly seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

  1. AN ORDINANCE OF THE MIAMI SHORES VILLAGE COUNCIL, AMENDING CHAPTER 18, ARTICLE III, GENERAL EIMPLOYEES PENSION PLAN, OF THE VILLAGE CODE OF ORDINANCES TO COMPLY WITH INTERNAL REVENUE CODE AND TREASURY REGULATION CHANGES PER THE 2007 CUMULATIVE LIST OF CHANGES IN PLAN QUALIFICATION REQUIREMENTS AS APPROVED BY THE FAVORABLE DETERMINATION LETTER DATED APRIL 20, 2016, PROVIDING FOR CONFLICTS, PROVIDING FOR SEVERABILITY, AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.                                                                 (2nd & Final Reading)
  1. AN ORDINANCE OF THE MIAMI SHORES VILLAGE COUNCIL, AMENDING CHAPTER 18, ARTICLE IV, POLICE OFFICERS’ RETIREMENT SYSTEM, OF THE VILLAGE CODE OF ORDINANCES TO COMPLY WITH INTERNAL REVENUE CODE AND TREASURY REGULATION CHANGES PER THE 2007 CUMULATIVE LIST OF CHANGES IN PLAN QUALIFICATION REQUIREMENTS AS APPROVED BY THE FAVORABLE DETERMINATION LETTER DATED APRIL 20, 2016, PROVIDING FOR CONFLICTS, PROVIDING FOR SEVERABILITY, AND PROVIDING FOR AN EFFECTIVE DATE.                                                                 (2nd & Final Reading)

Ms. Estep read the captions of the two proposed pension ordinances into the record and introduced Special Pension Counsel, Sepi Tofigh, who was present to answer any questions. Ms. Tofigh indicated that there are no substantive issues contained in the amendments, only changes as suggested by the IRS to ensure compliance with their regulations. Mayor Burch opened the floor for the Public Hearings but as no one came forward to comment, she subsequently closed the Public Hearings.

Councilman Ivonne Ledesma moved to approve the proposed Ordinance relating to the General Employee Pension Plan on second and final reading. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

Councilwoman Holly moved to approve the proposed Ordinance relating to the Police Officer’s Retirement System on second and final reading. Councilman Glinn seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

  1. REQUEST APPROVAL TO RENEW TURF AND LANDSCAPE MAINTENANCE JOINT PARTICIPATION AGREEMENT WITH THE FLORIDA DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION FOR CONTINUATION OF RIGHT-OF-WAY/MEDIAN MAINTENANCE OF STATE ROADWAYS.

Vice Mayor Zelkowitz moved to approve the Turf and Landscape Maintenance Joint Participation Agreement and contract renewals as presented. Councilwoman Holly seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

3)       VILLAGE COUNCIL                                                                  

  1. DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION REGARDING PURCHASING THE PROPERTY ADJACENT TO OPTIMIST PARK.                        Councilman Mac Glinn

Councilman Glinn introduced the item and offered information regarding the property which is currently in foreclosure. Mr. Benton and Mr. Sarafan provided information regarding their efforts and attempts to work with the property’s representatives as was the Council’s directive. Mr. Sarafan reviewed the property’s value as opposed to the Court’s Final Judgement dollar amount, as well as the particulars surrounding the property’s proposed sale. The suggestion was made to have the Council, if the decision is to move forward and attempt to purchase the property, set a dollar amount that the Administration is authorized to expend to obtain the parcel.

A lengthy discussion amongst the Council, Mr. Sarafan and Mr. Benton ensued, with Council Members expressing their opinions on the value of the property, it’s possible uses, zoning issues, and the likelihood of a sale price and value to the Village.

Prior to a motion being formulated, Mayor Burch opened the floor for public comment.

Daniela Pellicciotti           Ms. Pellicciotti indicated that the Village should look at the market value and the other values mentioned by Mr. Sarafan. She suggested that the Council not decide during the meeting as everyone that may be interested in the property would then know the Village’s bid.

Mr. Sarafan advised Ms. Pellicciotti regarding the sunshine laws and the requirement to discuss in an open, public meeting.

Janet Goodman                 Ms. Goodman suggested that the Village speak to Commissioner Edmonson as the County had recently acquired land in the Shorecrest neighborhood.

Mayor Burch closed public comment and asked for a motion on the item. Mr. Sarafan suggested a form the motion could take without jeopardizing the Village’s position. Following another brief discussion, Councilman Glinn moved to authorize Staff to bid for the property, with the bid not to exceed $650,000. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz seconded the motion and the vote was unanimous in favor of the motion.

  1. DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION REGARDING EVALUATIONS/PERFORMANCE REVIEWS.             Councilwoman Ivonne Ledesma

Councilwoman Ledesma read portions of her memorandum to the Council into the record. She then introduced Mr. David Scott, who made a presentation regarding the value of having outcomes tied to strategic plans and the transparency of program goals and achievements through computer dashboard screens. Following Mr. Scott’s presentation, Councilwoman Holly thanked him for the presentation and expressed her opinion that the Village residents routinely let both the Council and the Manager’s office know what is important to them and that the Village is much smaller than the municipalities he mentioned, i.e. Atlanta and Baltimore.

Councilwoman Ledesma spoke of the missed opportunities by not conducting performance reviews and that they are a common practice and expected in most organizations. Councilwoman Ledesma indicated that at a minimum, performance evaluations should be done for the Manager, Attorney and Clerk, and she would like to see evaluations conducted for all employees by their supervisors. Mr. Benton reviewed the history and past problems associated with performance evaluations and the fact that the Village’s labor attorney had advised that they should be discontinued. He stated that the alternative is to award COLA (cost of living adjustments) and that individual salaries are reviewed on a case by case basis. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz indicated that through his work with other cities he is aware that some conduct evaluations on the administrative staff. Council Members expressed their views on the issue of performance reviews.

Mayor Burch opened the floor for public comment.

Douglas Barnes                 Mr. Barnes spoke in favor of instituting performance evaluations.

Daniela Pellicciotti           Ms. Pellicciotti agreed that performance evaluations are important and that they are good for the employee and the Village.

Nancy Cigno                      Ms. Cigno thanked Councilwoman Ledesma for bringing the issue before the Council and believes that evaluations are important.

Xavier PeresregoMs. Peresrego spoke in favor of performance reviews and indicated that they don’t need to be tied to pay raises.

Mayor Burch closed the floor for public comment. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz indicated that an evaluation form could be put together. Vice Mayor Zelkowitz indicated that Mr. Sarafan is engaged through a contract with his firm, not as an individual. Councilwoman Ledesma agreed that it may not be appropriate to evaluate Mr. Sarafan. Making amendments to prior motions which had been proposed, the final motion was restated: move to begin evaluations for the Manager and the Clerk every October to start in October, 2017 contingent upon a form and criteria being in place by the end of October, 2016 with Councilwoman Ledesma and Vice Mayor Zelkowitz making the motion and the second respectively. The vote was three to two in favor of the motion with Mayor Burch and Councilwoman Holly dissenting. Administrative Staff will collect evaluation samples for review by the Council.

  

  1. DISCUSSION AND POSSIBLE ACTION REGARDING PENSION OPTION POLICY CHANGES FOR EMPLOYEES IN THE DROP.        Councilwoman Ivonne Ledesma

Councilwoman Ledesma introduced the item and provided background information regarding a long term employee who wants to change her benefit distribution selection. Councilwoman Ledesma read from her memorandum, indicating that the policy and ordinances should be changed as to allow a change in the distribution selection. She stated her belief that the issue is easily remedied and the cost would be passed on to the employee. Mayor Burch read from the draft minutes of the most recent Pension Board meeting where the issue was raised during the public comment portion of the meeting. She further stated that the Board had previously denied the request to change the selection and that the Pension Attorney had advised the Board against approval. Council discussion centered on whether it is common practice to allow for a change in the distribution, the possible costs (actuary, attorney costs, etc.), unintended consequences, and their empathy for the employee. Mr. Benton pointed out that even though there had not been a dedicated Human Resource staff member at the time, Elizabeth Keeley had been handling personnel issues for many years and had notated numerous meetings with the employee concerning the selection.   No action was taken on this issue.

        

4)         ANNOUNCEMENTS

Ms. Estep read the announcements.

Vice Mayor Zelkowitz left the meeting at this time.

5)         PUBLIC COMMENTS

None

6)         COUNCIL COMMENTS

Herta Holly         Councilwoman Holly spoke of the Police Chief’s new initiative “Chief Chats”.

Mac Glinn           Councilman Glinn stated he is looking forward to another great year.

Ivonne Ledesma  No Comment

Alice Burch         Mayor Burch thanked Tom Benton and Elizabeth Keeley for their work in providing an accurate picture of the Village with the Human Rights Campaign program. She also spoke of the king tides expected in September and October.

7)         ADJOURNMENT

The September 6, 2016 meeting was adjourned at 8:45 PM.

                                                                                                                   _________________________

                                                                                                                   Alice Burch, Mayor

_________________________

Barbara A. Estep, MMC

Village Clerk