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March 30, 2020 Council Minutes (Part 2 of 2)

Posted on April 20th, 2020 by

Once approved, a link to the official council minutes will be at the bottom.

ST. CLAIRSVILLE CITY COUNCIL

March 30, 2020 (reschedule of March 16 regular meeting) — Part 2 of 2

[Teleconference format in compliance with temporary changes to Ohio’s Open Meetings Act]

MINUTES:

President Velas  From that point, I kind of jumped over the minutes.  We’ve got three sets of minutes that need to be approved, from the February [1]8th meeting, the March 2nd meeting and the March 5th special meeting.  We will obviously address these individually but has everyone received a copy of the minutes?  And, do they have any questions on, first of all, the February 18th minutes?

Councilman Sabatino  Yes, I did.  I just want to say I was very disappointed how long it took me to get a clarification and a correction of the minutes of the February meeting there.  That would have been the 18th, I believe, the Tuesday meeting.  So, it was very frustrating, uh, what about that.  Otherwise than that, they end up being corrected, you know, and so I have no questions about them, about accepting them.

Councilman Bukmir, Councilwoman Butler, Councilman Basile  No questions.

Councilwoman Oprisch  I have received the minutes.  I have no questions.  I just want to thank Roberta for getting all those minutes together and making the amendments as requested.

Councilman Smith, and Councilwoman Jordan  No questions.

President Velas  Do I have a motion to approve the minutes from the meeting of February 18, 2020?  Councilwoman Jordan offers a motion to approve the minutes, and Councilwoman Butler offers a second.

ROLL CALL:

Basile  Yes                                                      Oprisch  Yes

Bukmir  Yes                                                    Sabatino  Yes

Butler  Yes                                                      Smith  Yes

Jordan  Yes

Roll Call Vote:            Seven (7) Yes              Zero (0) No     Motion Approved

President Velas  We have a 7 – 0 acceptance of the Feb 18 minutes, so those are approved.

President Velas  asks members in turn whether they have any questions on the March 2nd minutes.

Councilman Sabatino, Councilman Bukmir, Councilwoman Butler, Councilman Basile, Councilwoman Oprisch, and Councilman Smith:  No questions.

Councilwoman Jordan:  Yes.  I sent in a correction, and I haven’t seen the corrected minutes.  So, you know, once I see them, I will approve.

President Velas  OK.  Roberta [Council Clerk] believes that those have been mailed out, should have been in your emails.  So, the correction was mailed out to your email.

Councilwoman Jordan  I saw the correction, but I didn’t see the actual corrected minutes.

Councilman Basile  You’re kidding, right?

President Velas  OK.  If you’ve got the correction, is it, did you see the corrected minutes at all? 

Councilwoman Jordan  No, not the entire minutes, I just saw that there was going to be a correction.  There is going to be a correction, but I did not see the minutes with the correction included.

President Velas  OK.  I’m looking at the Council minutes.  Was the correction that you are referring to in response to when it broke?

Councilwoman Jordan  Yes.

President Velas  OK.  “Councilman Basile stated  ‘At the first meeting, it stopped recording.’”

Councilwoman Jordan  Yes.  Yes.

President Velas  OK.  Those have been put into the March 2nd minutes as corrected.

Councilwoman Jordan  All right.  All right.  Ok.  Thank you.

President Velas  That being said, do we have a motion to approve the March 2nd minutes?  Please state your name before you make the motion.  Councilwoman Oprisch makes a motion to accept the minutes, and Councilwoman Butler offers a second.

ROLL CALL:

Basile  Yes                                                      Oprisch  Yes

Bukmir  Yes                                                    Sabatino  Yes*

Butler  Yes                                                      Smith  Yes

Jordan  Yes

*If Linda is satisfied.

Roll Call Vote:            Seven (7) Yes              Zero (0) No     Motion Approved

President Velas  We have 7 votes in favor of approving, so the March 2nd minutes have been  approved.

President Velas  The next minutes are the March 5th Special Meeting minutes.  President Velas asks members if they have looked at those and in turn whether they have any questions on them.

Councilman Sabatino, Councilman Bukmir, Councilwoman Butler, Councilman Basile, Councilwoman Oprisch, Councilman Smith, and Councilwoman Jordan:  No questions.

ROLL CALL:

Basile  Yes                                                      Oprisch  Yes

Bukmir  Yes                                                    Sabatino  Yes

Butler  Abstain*                                              Smith  Yes

Jordan  Yes

*Because I was not there.

Roll Call Vote:            Six (6) Yes      Zero (0) No     One (1) Abstention

Councilwoman Oprisch  Jim [Velas], if I may, did we take a motion first before we voted on this set of minutes?

Clerk:  I think we did not.  Thank you.

President Velas  Actually, we probably did not, as we are looking back here.  So, we need to have a motion on the March 5th minutes to approve.  Councilwoman Oprisch This is Beth, I make that motion to approve the March 5th minutes.  President Velas confirms that Councilman Smith offers a second.

Councilman Sabatino  Jim, is that March 2nd or March 5th?

President Velas  March 5th.  That was the special meeting

Councilman Sabatino OK.  The special meeting.  All right.  Thank you.

President Velas  OK.  Elizabeth [Glick], do we need to vote on that again since the motion has been made?  Probably?

Law Director Glick  Probably.

President Velas  OK.  We’ll again take a roll call vote on the March 5th special minutes.

ROLL CALL:

Basile  Yes                                                      Oprisch  Yes

Bukmir  Yes                                                    Sabatino  Yes

Butler  Abstain                                                Smith  Yes

Jordan  Yes

Roll Call Vote:            Six (6) Yes      Zero (0) No     One (1) Abstention

President Velas  The March 5th special meeting minutes are approved.  Beth [Oprisch], thank you for catching that; that was my oversight.  The minutes have been approved.  At this time, we will move on to the reports.

REPORTS:

Mayor, Kathryn Thalman  I’ll try to keep it brief.  During the past several weeks, we have spent dozens of hours working to keep things up and running during the coronavirus pandemic.  We have been meeting with all of our stakeholders impacted by this pandemic. This includes government officials, lawyers, consultants, business people, employees, and citizens. We want to understand their needs in this time of uncertainty.

We don’t know right now the whole scope of the economic impact of this pandemic. We do not know how long this will last. We are going to be prudent and forward-thinking as we plan for the future of St. Clairsville after the pandemic.  As the mayor, I have a responsibility to maintain a functional government that provides people with the services they pay taxes for.  I also have a fiscal responsibility to maintain the City budget.

We are all understandably focused on, how do we get this done right now? But this is a marathon, not a sprint, and it is my job to ensure the choices we make right now are in our best interest six weeks, six months, or a year from now.  I have determined that I can fulfill these responsibilities by continuing on with essential City services, and maintaining staffing levels so we are eligible to participate in the Paycheck Protection Program, which will be a provision of the $2 trillion-dollar federal stimulus package.

We are still working on understanding the details of this new stimulus as it works its way through the process and as lawyers pick it apart to explain to us what it means.  However, at this point, I understand that one provision of the stimulus plan is the Paycheck Protection Program, which is meant to ensure that organizations have funds to pay their employees and to prevent layoffs. Organizations including municipalities can receive up to $10 million in loans at 4% interest rates, so long as they maintain staffing levels. As long as the business maintains these staffing levels, it will only be required to pay back the interest accrued, and the principal will effectively become a grant.  It is critically important that we maintain staffing numbers so that we can remain eligible for this aid that will no doubt be much needed in the future.

In addition to that, we have spent a lot of time ensuring we are in compliance with Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Acton’s March 23, 2020 Stay-at-Home Order.  We have implemented all the social distancing requirements outlined in the Order.  We have also identified all essential governmental employees as outlined in the Order.  Specifically, the Order permits “essential government functions” which means all services provided by the state or any municipality, township, county, political subdivision, board, commission or agency of government and needed to ensure the continuing operation of the government agencies to provide for or support the health, safety, and welfare of the public. Each government body shall determine its essential government functions and identify employees necessary to the performance of those functions.  Organizations are also permitted to conduct minimum basic operations, provided employees comply with social distancing requirements. These are the minimum necessary activities to preserve and maintain the condition of the organization’s infrastructure.

Because we operate very lean here in St. Clairsville, most of our employees are considered essential. And I also have to take into account the importance of maintaining staffing levels so we do not disqualify ourselves from aid in the future if we need it. And it is very likely we will need it.  Here we have a Rec Center that is desperately in need of care, cleaning, and maintenance.  It will see heavy and immediate use as soon as the Stay at Home order is lifted; and I want those kids to be able to open the doors the minute it does.  Therefore, in addition to doing program planning from home, our Rec employees will be maintaining and sanitizing the Recreation Department in anticipation of reopening.  They will work staggered shifts and otherwise maintain all social distancing requirements. This will ensure we continue minimum basic operations and eligibility for the Paycheck Protection Act.

I also want to thank very quickly the many individuals who have kept things running during this unprecedented time of corona.  First, thank you to Jody Williams, Jim Velas, and Jim Biehl for getting us up and running and able to convene a meeting by teleconference.  It was a major accomplishment with lots of hurdles and challenges, but they did it.  Thank you to Donny Smithberger, who upon receiving directives and new protocols to keep our municipal family safe, immediately instituted these safety protocols.

To our wonderful police force. Despite the warnings and stay home edicts, they continue to put themselves in harm’s way to maintain the safety and continuity of our City.  Chief Arbenz and I went over protocols which he immediately instituted to keep our officers and citizens safe. Not only that, the Police stepped up to the plate and are helping deliver prescriptions and food to people with no family; and they are checking on children whose parents are at work when parents request this.  Thank you gentlemen.

To the staff at the Municipal building, Anita and the crew, Annette, Lee Anne, Tom, Roberta, who are still going and working and all using out of the box thinking.  Despite not being able to meet in person, teleconferences have been taking place all day every day.

Having been in contact with Belmont County Health Department, they have told me that St. Clairsville has been extremely pro-active and probably more aggressive than most cities with our safety measures.

We’ve set up a conference call number, a free to conference number.  We’ve been having basically twice weekly conference calls with department heads, staff, law director and Council president to make sure we address and solve any upcoming problems.

Lastly, I’d like to thank Tony and Ed from Aqua for participating in this unusual form of teleconference.  And, I also want to thank very much Jeff Vaughn.  What Jeff has done is the equivalent of starting a term paper at midnight the night before it is due when you’ve had all year to do it.  He has put herculean efforts in to getting these reports to us.  I hope that I’ve thought to thank everyone.  Again, what we’ve had to do with the EPA, it was nothing short of a miracle.  And, I’d like to thank everyone involved.  Thank you all for your understanding during this time.  And, let’s just all pray we get through it unscathed.  That’s it.

President Velas  OK.  Thank you, Kathryn.  He asked Council members in turn if they had any questions for the Mayor.

Councilman Sabatino  None.

Councilman Bukmir  Yes.  I did not get the letter from the EPA that Mr. Vaughn referenced that was sent to the Mayor.  I have not received that.

Mayor Thalman  I’ll make sure you get one, Mark.

Councilman Bukmir  My second question is, several meetings ago, I noticed on the agenda we had to renew the City’s insurance policy.  Have we done that, or, because I don’t recall voting on that or speaking of that?

Mayor Thalman  We have with Schwendeman.

Councilman Bukmir  I’m sorry.  I didn’t hear that.

Mayor Thalman  Yes.  We did.  And, actually, we had a rate reduction.

Councilman Bukmir  Are we still with Travelers?

Mayor Thalman  Yes.

Councilman Bukmir  Thank you.  No further questions.

Mayor Thalman  Thank you.

Councilwoman Butler and Councilman Basile  No questions.

Councilwoman Oprisch  No.  Just my appreciation for the Administration for being pro-active and really trying to keep things going, and understanding the times that we are in.

Councilman Smith  No.  I do not.

Councilwoman Jordan  Yes.  I just have a request, that any water and wastewater meetings that all seven of us Council members be made aware of the day, time and place.

Mayor Thalman  I apologize.  My phone died.  And, I didn’t catch the question.  Sorry.

Councilwoman Jordan  Oh, my question?  It wasn’t a question; it was a request. 

Mayor Thalman  Oh, I’m sorry, I didn’t hear it, Linda [Jordan].  My phone went.

Councilwoman Jordan  Oh, OK.  I’m requesting that whenever there is a water or wastewater meeting, that any issues regarding water or wastewater, that all seven of us Council members be informed of the day, time and place.  Please.

Mayor Thalman  OK.  That’s up to Jim [Velas].  We pretty much had him handle that.  But, I’ll make sure that you are informed.

Councilwoman Jordan Thank you.

Mayor Thalman  He has been in on everything.

President Velas  OK.  Linda, as far as everybody appearing to have all seven Council members aware that those meetings are taking place to have everybody there or on a conference call would be a violation of the Open Meetings Act.  That would have to be done at a special meeting.

Councilwoman Jordan  But, the media was at the one with Martins Ferry.  That was the one that was in the newspaper.  I saw it in the newspaper.  But, that’s OK, I was just asking to please let us all know.

President Velas  OK.

Councilwoman Jordan  Thank you.

Police Chief, Matt Arbenz  No.  Just that I appreciate everyone pitching in and helping.  We’ve been in contact with the Sheriff’s Office and the rest of the Chiefs of Police as far as protocals and whatnot.  We did get approved for the grant to get the computers back in the cars, and we have applied for a grant for new vests for all the officers.  That’s about it.

President Velas  asks members in turn if they have any questions for the Chief.

Councilman Sabatino  Yes.  I have a couple of requests for Chief Arbenz.  Matt [Arbenz], on your monthly report, I would like to see you put it back on, the officers’ performance and also the amount of miles that we put on the cruisers for the month.  That was formerly on there.  On your first report, in February, it was missing.  I think as far as transparency and communication those are very important items to be included on your monthly report.  And, that’s all.

Chief Arbenz  OK.

Councilman Bukmir and Councilwoman Butler  No questions.

Councilman  Basile  No questions, but I just want to say good job.  You are doing a great job there.

Councilwoman Oprisch  I would just want to, Frank’s [Sabatino] points about the report, I feel like that is something which should be taken up in the Police Committee meetings.  Chief Arbenz and I have had conversations about that and I think he makes some good points about what should be on the report.  So, I’d like that matter referred to the Police Committee.  Also, I would like to offer my compliments to Chief Arbenz.  I’ve had a chance to work with him pretty closely as we have the ability to bring on another officer.  I’m impressed with his professionalism, and I thank you for that.

Chief Arbenz  Thank you, Beth.

Councilman Smith and Councilwoman Jordan  No questions.

Finance Director, Annette Williams [absent]  Councilman Smith, Finance Committee Chair   Jim, I’d like to speak up.   I think Annette had to leave.  She said at the beginning of the meeting that she had to get home for some kind of plumbing problem.  And, the Aqua people went on for almost an hour.  And, then Jeff went on for maybe a half hour on top of that.  So, I think she had to leave.  But, I can give a report in her place because I have to give a report anyway.

President Velas  I’ll let you bring that up…

Councilman Smith  Do you want me to wait?

President Velas  We’ll bring that up at the Finance Committee report, when we get to your report.

Councilman Smith  OK.  Thanks.

President Velas  Thanks, Mike.

Planning & Zoning Administrator, Tom Murphy  Just two very quick things for Council.  First, the public hearing regarding the zoning map and text amendments, that will be in the future, and we will make everyone aware of that at that point in time when that is scheduled.  The only other item, some good news, that the Census response rate as of March 29 for the City is 51.4%.  The state is at 37.6%.  So, you can see that we are way ahead of the state response rate at this point in time and that’s due to everyone’s hard work in getting the word out.  But, continue to do that, talk to your neighbors, knock on doors.  If anyone asks you a question about the Census, you can always refer them to me.  And, that’s pretty much it right now.

Councilman Sabatino, Councilman Bukmir, Councilwoman Butler, and Councilman Basile  No questions.

Councilwoman Oprisch, No, but thanks, Tom.  I appreciate all of the work on the Census.

Tom Murphy  You are welcome.

Councilman Smith, and Councilwoman Jordan  No questions.

President Velas  invites Don Smithberger, Superintendent of General Services, to bring up anything quickly.  Don Smithberger  Just simply the power was out because of a tree in the 69 line by the interstate.  And, AEP got it fixed very quickly for us.  That’s all.

COMMITTEE REPORTS:

Finance, Chair Mike Smith  Annette [Williams] emailed the Finance Committee some reports.  And, one report I believe is the one we usually got.  For our meetings, we were provided with two additional reports this time.  I think Annette’s probably going to give us a little education on those reports at the next Finance Committee meeting whenever that is going to be.  Who knows?  And, from what I understand, I think everything is going pretty good.  Payroll is getting done, bills are getting paid.  She is working well with Lee Anne [Pytlak], and I don’t think there is any problem so far that I know of.  But, our next Finance Committee meeting, I don’t know if it is going to take place or not in April.  It is to be determined.  So, if anybody has any questions in the meantime, contact Annette.  She’ll be glad to provide anything you need.  That’s all.

President Velas  asks members in turn if they have any questions.

Councilman Sabatino  Yes.  I do.  You know, I’m on Finance Committee.  And, Anita [correction – Annette], as Mike knows, she sent us a email on March, might have been Friday.  But any ways, there were some expenses that she wrote none of these constitute emergencies, therefore no motion, whatever, but any ways, since she’s not there to explain them in full, like Mike says, I would imagine we could table that until she’s available to explain that to the entire Council.  That’s all I have.

Chair Smith  Thanks, Frank, for bringing that up.  That’s a good point.  Yes, she did send those over, and I really couldn’t make sense of it.  But, good point, Frank.  Thanks.

Councilman Bukmir, Councilwoman Butler, Councilman Basile, and Councilwoman Oprisch  No questions.

Councilman Smith  No.  No questions for myself.

President Velas  Sorry about that, I thought I would check.  I put you in the wrong place.

Councilwoman Jordan  No.

Utilities, Chair Beth Oprisch  We are supposed to have the Utilities Committee meeting next week.  I don’t know how we are going to end up doing that given the situation that we are in.  But, I have had an opportunity to talk with Anita [Robinson].  Anita – Are you still on the line?

Anita Robinson, Municipal Utilities Office  Yes.  I’m here.

Chair Oprisch  OK.  Anita is such, I can’t explain just how on the spot and efficient, and how professional she is to work with.  I want to say that first.  But, we are going to be talking about this resolution here in a little bit.  And, there are probably going to be some other things that we are going to have to talk about is how are we going to address utility bills and customers that find themselves in financial situations in this pandemic era.  So, again, Anita has got things running very smoothly there.  I really appreciate everything she does and everything she brings to it, going to work and really trying to help us figure this out.  So, I’ll be talking to her more.  And, you know, Linda [Jordan], as we do the utilities, I invite you to be a member of the Utility Committee.  And, you too Jim, as we have Council members express an interest, we ought to consider that at some point.  But, I feel like tonight, we haven’t had this formal Utility Committee — and I’m not sure how we are doing that – but the resolution that we will be talking about, hopefully in a few minutes.  I think that there probably will be some other ones that we are going to have to consider at some point.  And, Anita, I don’t know if you want to say something?

Anita Robinson  Just that it is important that we try to have a Utility Committee meeting soon.  I do have some things to go over for customers.  And, after tonight, if we do make an emergency not put penalties on, then I can send notices out without the penalties.

Chair Oprisch  We’ll talk.  I’ll give you a call later this week and we can try to figure out how we can do that in a safe manner, following the Governor’s orders.

Anita Robinson  OK.  Thank you.

President Velas  I would just venture a guess at this point in time, we are looking at probably the next several Council meetings also being teleconferenceSo, I would think maybe you could prior to the regular Council meeting, you could hold a Utility meeting in advance of the regular meeting just as we are tonight.  And, those would also be open to the public since committee meetings are available for the public.  That could be done before the Council meeting next Monday but you probably want to get ahold of the Utility Committee and Anita and see what you want to bring up at that meeting.

Police, Chair Mark Bukmir  No report.

Streets – North, Chair Terra Butler  I did get a couple questions today from down on Bellview.  After the heavy rains this past weekend, they are still wanting to know when things are going to be addressed down there.  They didn’t have any issues, so that was good.  But, they are wanting to know when things are going to be handled.

President Velas  I think that is something that is on everyone’s agenda.  We are trying to look into that, hopefully, to be able to solve their problem as well and as fast as possible.

Chair Butler  I understand.  I knew this was probably going to come up come spring time due to the heavy rains we get.  So, some sort of direction there, anything at all.

President Velas  OK.  I was glad to hear that there were no flooding issues.

Chair Butler  Me too.

President Velas  Ask Council members in turn if they have any questions for Chair Butler.

Councilman Sabatino, Councilman Bukmir, Councilman Basile, Councilwoman Oprisch, Councilman Smith and Councilwoman Jordan  No questions.

Streets – South, Chair Beth Oprisch  No report.

Safety, Chair Terra Butler  No report.

Building & Grounds, Chair Perry Basile  Yes.  I do actually.  I have a question for Frank [Sabatino].  Frank, I need a better way to get ahold of you.  I’ve left several messages with you, and there’s a lot of stuff happening with buildings and grounds.  So, if you’ve got an alternative number or something that you can pass along to me, that would be great.

Councilman Sabatino  My cell phone number is listed on the sheet of Committee assignments.

Chair Basile  That’s the one I called.  I called it twice last week; actually, once the previous week and then once last week.

Councilman Sabatino  Are you leaving a message?

Chair Basile  Yea.

Councilman Sabatino  OK.  I’m not getting anything.  If you leave a message, tell me who you are.  I don’t want that telemarketing, that’s for sure.

Chair Basile  It’s just coming up on your caller ID, and you’re like, I love that guy.  I’m just messing with you, Frank.  I want to get together with you.  There is just a lot happening with buildings and grounds.  And, I want to blow a lot of stuff by you and see what you thought.

Councilman Sabatino  Well, if you want it, I’ll give it to you right now, Perry.

Chair Basile  Yea, that would be great.

Councilman Sabatino  740-296-4343.

Chair Basile  repeats the number and thanks Frank.

Councilman Sabatino  You’re welcome.

President Velas  asks Chair Sabatino if he has a report for the Planning Committee.

Councilwoman Jordan  I have a question for Perry [Basile].  Not a question, uh, Perry, the Park Board wanted to let you know that there are trees down on the bike trail, uh, the walking trail, the nature trail.  So, you might like to take a little gander down there every now and again.

Chair Basile  Oh, that would be great.  You’re talking about the walking trail.

Councilwoman Jordan  Well, yes.  The nature trail out at the park that the City owns.

Chair Basile  Yea.  OK.  I appreciate you telling me that.

Councilwoman Jordan  And, I will let them know that I did mention it to you.

Chair Basile  I appreciate you letting me know.

Fire District, Chair Frank Sabatino  Yes.  Our meeting last Wednesday was cancelled, of course.  Chief Hall has been in contact with me quite often, giving me updates.  I just want to commend the Department.  They are on the potential front line of every call of what’s going on and we wish them well and we wish them safe, and we thank them for what they’ve done so far.  And, that’s all I have to report.

President Velas  Ask Council members in turn if they have any questions for Chair Sabatino.

Councilman Bukmir, Councilwoman Butler, Councilman Basile, Councilwoman Oprisch, Councilman Smith and Councilwoman Jordan  No questions.

Recreation, Chair Linda Jordan  No report.  Of course, you know we are closed.

Park District, Chair Linda Jordan  And, as far as the Park goes, they are now on two meetings per month, which is every second and fourth Monday.  The park is open but there are signs posted.  The playground is closed, no basketball, of course.  And, like I say, there are signs throughout the park.

Councilman Sabatino, Councilman Bukmir, Councilwoman Butler, Councilman Basile, Councilwoman Oprisch and Councilman Smith  No questions.

President Velas  Thank you.  That concludes the Committee Reports.  We’ll now move to Ordinances and Resolutions with Law Director Elizabeth Glick.  There are several pieces of legislation she will explain.

ORDINANCES & RESOLUTIONS:

Law Director, Elizabeth Glick  This is Elizabeth.  You have three pieces of legislation to consider tonight.  One is an ordinance to

Councilwoman Oprisch  I’m having a very hard time hearing.

Mayor Thalman  Can’t hear you, Elizabeth.

Law Director Glick  [searches for a better microphone at Council desk]  We have to rearrange so Jody and I can maintain social distancing.  Can everybody hear me now?

Councilman Sabatino  Still can’t hear.

Law Director Glick  [moves to another mic]  OK.  Hopefully, the third time is a charm.  Can everybody hear me now?  [Several Council members affirm that the sound is better now.]  We have three pieces of legislation to consider tonight.  One is an ordinance to make interfund transfers and reallocations within the funds for the normal expenses and other expenditures of the City.  There is a resolution authorizing participation in the ODOT [Ohio Department of Transportation] contract for road salt, and a resolution authorizing a waiver of the past due penalty assessed on all utility bills for two billing periods, the first being March 1, 2020 to March 31, 2020, and the second being April 1, 2020 to April 30, 2020; that’s in response to the COVID crisis.  All three pieces of legislation are emergency measures.

President Velas  Can everybody here me now at this mic?  [Several Council members affirm that they can hear him.]  The first piece of legislation is Ordinance Number 2020-6, and it’s the financial transfers.

Law Director Glick  ORDINANCE NUMBER 2020-6:  AN ORDINANCE TO MAKE INTERFUND TRANSFERS AND REALLOCATIONS WITHIN THE FUNDS FOR THE NORMAL EXPENSES AND OTHER EXPENDITURES OF THE CITY OF ST. CLAIRSVILLE, STATE OF OHIO, FOR THE PERIOD JANUARY 1, 2020 THROUGH DECEMBER 31, 2020, AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY.  First, we need a motion to…

President Velas  Pass this as emergency legislation.  Does anyone wish to make a motion that this can be considered as emergency legislation?  Frank [Sabatino], do you want to make the motion?

Councilman Sabatino  Yes.  I make the motion that rules be waived and we pass it on emergency action.  I don’t have my cheat sheet with me.

President Velas  OK.  We need a second.  Mark [Bukmir], I’m just going down the line again for expediency.  Do you wish to second that motion?

Councilman Bukmir  You cut out.  I did not hear what you said at the end.

President Velas  Do we have a second on the passage of this as emergency legislation?

Councilman Bukmir  Yes.

President Velas  Mark is going to second it.  We will have to take a roll call vote.  It will take five votes to pass this.

ROLL CALL:

Basile  Yes                                          Oprisch  Yes

Bukmir  Yes                                        Sabatino  Yes

Butler  Yes                                          Smith  Yes

Jordan  Yes

Roll Call Vote:            Seven (7) Yes              Zero (0) No     Motion Approved

President Velas  OK, it will be considered now emergency legislation.  We will have Roberta [Clerk] read it and will take a roll call vote to pass it.  ORDINANCE NUMBER 2020-6:  AN ORDINANCE TO MAKE INTERFUND TRANSFERS AND REALLOCATIONS WITHIN THE FUNDS FOR THE NORMAL EXPENSES AND OTHER EXPENDITURES OF THE CITY OF ST. CLAIRSVILLE, STATE OF OHIO, FOR THE PERIOD JANUARY 1, 2020 THROUGH DECEMBER 31, 2020, AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY.

ROLL CALL:

Basile  Yes                                          Oprisch  Yes

Bukmir  Yes                                        Sabatino  Yes

Butler  Yes                                          Smith  Yes

Jordan  Yes

Roll Call Vote:            Seven (7) Yes              Zero (0) No     Motion Approved

President Velas  The funds transfer has been approved and it is passed.

Law Director Glick  The second piece of legislation is RESOLUTION NUMBER 2020-7: A RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING PARTICIPATION IN THE ODOT CONTRACT (018-21) FOR ROAD SALT AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY.  May I have a motion to suspend the rules and treat this as an emergency?

Councilwoman Jordan  I move that the rules requiring ordinances and resolutions to be read on the separate readings be suspended and declaring an emergency.

Law Director Glick  Do I have a second?  Councilman Basile seconds the motion.

President Velas  We’ll take a roll call vote on passing this as emergency legislation.

ROLL CALL:

Basile  Yes                                          Oprisch  Yes

Bukmir  Yes                                        Sabatino  Yes

Butler  Yes                                          Smith  Yes

Jordan  Yes

Roll Call Vote:            Seven (7) Yes              Zero (0) No     Motion Approved

President Velas  OK, we are now considering it emergency legislation and we’ll need a vote on the legislation [RESOLUTION NUMBER 2020-7] itself.

ROLL CALL:

Basile  Yes                                          Oprisch  Yes

Bukmir  Yes                                        Sabatino  Yes

Butler  Yes                                          Smith  Yes

Jordan  Yes

Roll Call Vote:            Seven (7) Yes              Zero (0) No     Motion Approved

President Velas  OK.  Resolution Number 2020-7 is passed.

Law Director Glick  The last piece of legislation is RESOLUTION NUMBER 2020-8:  A RESOLUTION AUTHORIZING A WAIVER OF THE PAST DUE PENALTY ASSESSED ON ALL UTILITY BILLS OF ST. CLAIRSVILLE MUNICIPAL UTILITIES FOR THE BILLING PERIODS OF 03/01/2020 TO 03/31/2020 AND 04/01/2020 TO 04/30/2020, ONLY, AND DECLARING AN EMERGENCY.   Do I have a motion to suspend the rules and treat this as an emergency?

Councilwoman Jordan  I move that the rules requiring ordinances and resolutions to be read on the separate readings be suspended and declaring an emergency.   Councilwoman Oprisch  seconds the motion.

ROLL CALL:

Basile  Yes                                          Oprisch  Yes

Bukmir  Yes                                        Sabatino  Yes

Butler  Yes                                          Smith  Yes

Jordan  Yes

Roll Call Vote:            Seven (7) Yes              Zero (0) No     Motion Approved

President Velas  OK, we’ll now vote on the motion itself to suspend the utility late payments [RESOLUTION NUMBER 2020-8].  We’ll take a roll call vote.

ROLL CALL:

Basile  Yes                                          Oprisch  Yes

Bukmir  Yes                                        Sabatino  Yes

Butler  Yes                                          Smith  Yes

Jordan  Yes

Roll Call Vote:            Seven (7) Yes              Zero (0) No     Motion Approved

President Velas  OK.  This legislation passes; the late penalty assessments have been suspended for the next two billing periods.  This is in response to the mandatory layoffs of a lot of people and closing of businesses.  This is our first attempt into looking into what we can do to assist the residents of the City that are going to be running into financial hardships.  If this needs to go any further than this, it can be considered at a later time.  Or if there’s any other things that the City can do to make an attempt to help the citizens.

President Velas  I do want to make one other comment at this time.  And, I’m sure this has come into a lot of peoples’ mind where you are starting to talk about the water issues again.  The City officials have considered somehow trying to look into a town hall meeting to discuss the possibility of the sale.  So far at this point in time, there’s been a monkey wrench thrown into that due to the coronavirus.  We are still looking into finding a way to somehow see if we can address a town hall meeting to get some input from the citizens.  So, we are not just leaving you out there.  It’s just right now the logistics, and the meeting numbers, and how we would do this are kinda throwing us an issue to deal with here.  But, we have not ruled that out.  So, that is something we are looking into, and I just wanted to pass that on to any residents that are listening.

President Velas  At this time, I don’t think there is anything else.  The next Council meeting will be on April 6th at the same time.  I am assuming, based on the conditions of the coronavirus, we’ll probably also for the next couple of meetings be on teleconference.  It will be handled the same way as tonight.  I want to thank any of the residents that have bothered to listen in to the meeting tonight.  We want everybody to be informed.  I don’t know how many of them on have stayed this long.  This is probably been one of the longer Council meetings.  But, I do appreciate anybody that did listen in to get some information.  And, if you have any input or wish to say, please contact either your Ward councilperson or any one of the At-Large councilpersons with any input that you might want to give them.

NEW BUSINESS:

President Velas  So, at that time, unless anyone has any new business, I will entertain a motion to adjourn the meeting.  Frank [Sabatino], anybody?

Councilman Sabatino  Nothing here.  Long night.

Councilman Bukmir  No, sir.

Councilwoman Butler  I do not.

Councilman Basile  No.  Take us home, Jim.

President Velas  I’m trying.

Councilwoman Oprisch  No, sir.

Councilman Smith  I just want to say, I know there is a lot going on behind the scenes to get this meeting together.  And, I appreciate Kathryn [Thalman] and everybody who did it.  It is kinda of a historical meeting.  And, Jim, I want to thank you for doing a pretty good job considering.  Councilman Basile  I’ll second that.

Mayor Thalman  Good job, guys.

President Velas  I appreciate that.  Linda, do you have any brand new business that you would like to bring up quickly?

Councilwoman Jordan  No thank you.

ADJOURNMENT:

President Velas  OK.  Thank you.  At this time, we will entertain a motion to adjourn.  Anyone want to make a motion to adjourn the meeting?  Councilman Basile  I’ll make that motion.

Councilman Smith  Offers the motion to adjourn.  Councilwoman Butler  seconds the motion.           

President Velas   Meeting is adjourned.

March 30, 2020 Council Minutes_Part 2 of 2