September 9, 2013

 

 

 

 

The Ellettsville, Indiana, Town Council met for a regular meeting on Monday, September 9, 2013, at the Fire Department Training and Conference Room.  Scott Oldham called the meeting to order at 6:30 p.m.  Dianna Bastin led the Pledge of Allegiance followed with a prayer by Phillip Smith.

 

Roll Call:  Members present were Scott Oldham, President; Dan Swafford, Vice President; Dianna Bastin and Phillip Smith.  Dianna Bastin was absent.  Sandra Hash, Clerk-Treasurer, Darla Brown, Town Attorney, and Rick Coppock, Bynum Fanyo and Associates, Town Engineer, were also present. 

 

Supervisors present were:  Mike Cornman, Jim Ragle, Jay Humphrey, Connie Griffin, Jeff Farmer and Mike Farmer.

 

Approval of Minutes

 

Scott Oldham entertained a motion for approval of the minutes for the regular meeting on August 26, 2013.  Phillip Smith so moved.  Dan Swafford seconded.  Motion carried.

 

Accounts Payable Vouchers

 

Scott Oldham entertained a motion for action to pay Accounts Payable Vouchers.  Dianna Bastin so moved.  Phillip Smith seconded.  Motion carried.

 

Ordinances on Second Reading

 

Ordinance 2013-10 to Terminate the Debt Service Police Fund and Transfer Remaining Balance to the Renamed Lease Rental Payment Fund

 

Sandra Hash, Clerk-Treasurer, explained when the Town consolidated the bonds for the Police and Fire Departments it meant there would only be one budget in 2014.  The next payment is due at the end of 2013.  They have to be pulled together, the fund renamed, balance combined and an additional appropriation will have to be done. 

 

Scott Oldham entertained a motion to pass Ordinance 2013-10.  Dianna Bastin made a motion to pass Ordinance 2013-10.  Phillip Smith seconded.  Roll Call Vote:  Scott Oldham – yes; Dan Swafford – yes; Dianna Bastin - Yes and Phillip Smith– yes.  Motion carried 4-0.

 

Ordinance 2013-11 to Amend Ordinance 2012-26 Fixing the Salaries for Budget Year 2013

 

Fire Chief Mike Cornman explained the salary ordinance needs adjusted to allow the salary for the Fire Chief to match the education pay he has.  It’s different than what the previous chief had.  There is an increase of $48.

 

Dan Swafford asked if he is changing his hours.  Chief Cornman replied he went to 7:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m., Monday through Friday.  This also reflects an hourly wage.  His previous pay was based on a 24 hour shift or 2,904 hours and he is now working 40 hours a week.

 

Scott Oldham entertained a motion to pass Ordinance 2013-11 to amend Ordinance 2012-26.  Dianna Bastin made a motion to pass Ordinance 2013-11 to amend Ordinance 2012-26.  Dan Swafford seconded.  Roll Call Vote:  Scott Oldham – yes; Dan Swafford – yes; Dianna Bastin - Yes and Phillip Smith– yes.  Motion carried 4-0.

 

Fire Chief Mike Cornman requested the salary increase be made retroactive to August 30, 2013.

 

Scott Oldham entertained a motion to make it retroactive to the day he was named Chief on August 30, 2013.  Dianna Bastin made a motion to make it retroactive to the day he was named Chief on August 30, 2013.  Phillip Smith seconded.  Roll Call Vote:  Scott Oldham – yes; Dan Swafford – yes; Dianna Bastin - Yes and Phillip Smith– yes.  Motion carried 4-0.

 

Old Business

 

Outsourcing Printing and Mailing of the Utility Bills

 

Mike Farmer, Ellettsville Utilities, explained they have found someone that will outsource and print their bills and mail it for a cost much lower than they’re currently paying doing themselves.  They do not have room for the machines that would be necessary to it in-house with the current billing they have.  In addition, there are costs that would be incurred for the machines.  He is requesting approval of a two year contract.

 

Dan Swafford commented he had a lengthy conversation about this with Mike Farmer.  Because of the unknown factors of what is going to happen in the future, he tends to agree with Mr. Farmer that this is probably the best way to go for now.  As they get into the new software program and see how things go then later they may re-visit this.  They also discussed customers who go green may cut down on the billing cost. 

 

Darla Brown, Town Attorney, explained it started out as a five year contract.  It is now an initial two year term but either party with 60 days notice to the other party can terminate the contract.  If no notice is given then it will go in to subsequent one year renewals.  During the initial two year or renewal period it can only be breached for cause.  If you give notice 60 days before the end of the contract you can get out of it.  Mr. Swafford reiterated he would like to re-visit this before the end of the two year contract and look into the cost of the equipment.  Mr. Farmer concurred. In 18 months they should evaluate where they stand and make sure it is still the best idea.

 

Dianna Bastin received a call and needs to ask two questions.  Will their bills be late this month and when will this start?  Mr. Farmer replied it is possible the bills will be late for the next printing cycle.  They’re going through a conversion and it is a very difficult process.  The delinquent notices will be late and possibly the bills.  They will take this into consideration when customers are trying to pay their bills.  They will be aware of any difficulty they may cause the customers and will react accordingly.  Ms. Bastin asked since this may pass tonight will they get a new bill.  Mr. Farmer answered the next bill could be from Smart Bill and could be October 1st.   Scott Oldham asked if customers will be sent two bills.  Mr. Farmer replied they will only be sent one bill. 

 

Darla Brown noted that Smart Bill agreed that it would not increase their service fees for the initial two year period.  They can increase the paper fees by no more than four percent (4%) of the fees in effect during the preceding pricing period.

 

Dan Swafford mentioned they spoke with them and there were questions about the billing.  Is the Town not charged the same thing for people who pay at E-Bill?  Mr. Farmer replied the Town is charged per unit.  It was based on 6,000 a month but they are not tied to that figure.  The Town will be charged on the actual cost.

 

Scott Oldham entertained a motion to approve outsourcing the printing and mailing of the Utility bills.  Dianna Bastin made a motion to approve outsourcing the printing and mailing of the Utility bills.  Phillip Smith seconded.  Roll Call Vote:  Scott Oldham – yes; Dan Swafford – yes; Dianna Bastin - Yes and Phillip Smith– yes.  Motion carried 4-0.

 

Agreement with AT & T to Place a Cell Phone Antenna on the McNeely Street Water Tower

 

Darla Brown, Town Attorney, explained this is a proposed contract to allow AT & T to place communications on the McNeely Street tower.  They are going to rent space from the Town.  One of the concerns she had was the proposed contract would allow AT & T to sublet the contract to another party without notice or approval of the Town.  She suggested a provision by which the Town would not unreasonably withhold its consent and AT & T did not agree to it.  The other part she had a concern about was a provision that would prohibit the Town from subletting to another third party without AT & T’s approval.  If AT & T ran propagation tests and determined that this co-location would interfere with their communications equipment then the Town would be prohibited from allowing another tenant.  They agreed on language that makes them more comfortable.  AT & T will now pay for the propagation test out of their own funds.  If the Town disagrees with those results it can ask that AT & T and trhe Town hire a third party engineering company experienced with doing those kinds of tests and will split the costs.  Then, that engineering firm’s decision is final as to whether or not the proposed third tenant’s location would interfere with AT & T Communications equipment. 

 

Scott Oldham asked if the fact AT & T wouldn’t agree on the sublet bothers Ms. Brown or is it a preventative measure.  Ms. Brown replied she thinks it would be better if the Town would know it in advance but anybody they would sublet to would step into the shoes of AT & T and be bound by the contract the same as AT & T.  Mr. Oldham asked if T-Mobile was the only other tower up.  Mr. Farmer answered there is also a local radio station antenna.  There is a chance to put a belt under the tank that could be used as an antenna such as Johnson Creamery has done.  There is a company that keeps calling him and they’re interested as well. 

 

Dianna Bastin asked if this tower is higher than the other tower.  Mr. Farmer replied it is almost 200 feet tall.  Ms. Bastin asked if there is a light on it.  Ms. Hash replied the contract says there is to be a light on it.  Ms. Bastin explained the week before some crop dusting was done and the school was concerned because they were flying so low they thought they were barely clearing the lights on the football field.  She was thinking there needs to be a light on the tower.  Mr. Farmer noted they are not required because of how tall it is but they are going to put one on it. 

 

Dan Swafford asked Ms. Brown if sublease means AT & T can sell to another company. Can they actually sell space on the Town’s water tower to a third party?  Ms. Brown replied they have the right to assign or sublease the premises but they can’t treat it as if the tower is their property.  Anybody they sublet to would step into the shoes of AT & T and would have the same obligations as they do.  Mr. Farmer stated Indiana Paging Network has an antenna on the other tower and they do receive some revenue from it.

 

Scott Oldham entertained a motion to accept the agreement with AT & T to place a cell phone antenna on the McNeely water tower.  Dianna Bastin made a motion to accept the agreement with AT & T to place a cell phone antenna on the McNeely water tower.  Dan Swafford seconded.  Roll Call Vote:  Scott Oldham – yes; Dan Swafford – yes; Dianna Bastin - Yes and Phillip Smith– yes.  Motion carried 4-0.

 

New Business

 

Backup Ambulance Agreement Between the Town of Ellettsville and IU Health/Bloomington Hospital

 

Fire Chief Mike Cornman explained the agreement has the same wording as the contracts the Town has had in the past.  However, there is a two percent (2%) increase over last year for a total of $55,594.13.  If passed this will add some personnel to their staff as well as training that is hard to get otherwise. 

 

Dianna Bastin asked why 220 is never mentioned in the contract.  Chief Cornman replied 220 is a rare breed.  It doesn’t make very many runs.  It is there in case they have extra personnel on the station during a major event.  Now it is used more so by the oncoming crew of the ambulance service because they work 12 hour shifts.  Mr. Oldham clarified they are referring to unit numbers.  Chief Cornman added 218 is the main backup ambulance out of the Curry Pike Station and 220 is used in Ellettsville.

 

Darla Brown, Town Attorney, concurred it is the same as last year’s contract except there is an increase of $1,090.08.

 

Scott Oldham entertained a motion to accept the agreement between the Town of Ellettsville and IU Health/Bloomington Hospital Ambulance.  Dianna Bastin made a motion to accept the agreement between the Town of Ellettsville and IU Health/Bloomington Hospital Ambulance.  Phillip Smith seconded.  Roll Call Vote:  Scott Oldham – yes; Dan Swafford – yes; Dianna Bastin - Yes and Phillip Smith– yes.  Motion carried 4-0.

 

H.J. Umbaugh – Water Rate Study Presentation

 

Mike Farmer, Ellettsville Utilities, spoke with Doug Baldessari of H.J. Umbaugh who was to attend this meeting.  They have been providing them with additional information and they are not ready.  Instead of rushing the rate study they won’t be ready to meet until the next meeting.

 

Council Comments

 

Dianna Bastin explained several weeks ago they talked about community service.  She and Dan meant with the supervisors and 75% of them are not for community corrections.  She is not for it and this includes road crews.  Someone brought up Fall Festival.  As a reminder, Fall Festival is a private organization, the Town does not supervise the work and they have no say so in who they bring over.  It is all done by volunteers.  She is requesting the Town Attorney prepare a resolution or ordinance that they don’t allow community service.  This is separate from the Richland Township Trustee’s work back program.  This is about anyone who is paying a debt to society for any type of crime they have committed.  It is a risk and not something government entities should get involved with. 

 

Dan Swafford doesn’t agree and asked if this needed to be in the form of a motion.  Ms. Brown replied since Ms. Bastin has requested she do a resolution she will prepare it for the next meeting and it can be up for discussion.  Mr. Oldham asked since there are two opposing opinions should she prepare a resolution for both?  Mr. Swafford added if the resolution dies then it would be at supervisor discretion.  Ms. Brown advised if Mr. Swafford’s version passes and the Town Council decides people can do community service then terms and conditions should be set forth.  If the Town Council does want to allow community service there needs to be guidelines.  Ms. Bastin said the Council and the public would need to know there are people doing community service and who they are.   She doesn’t want it to be the supervisor’s decision.  It’s not free labor and there is so much more to it.  Ms. Brown clarified the Council should know on a case by case basis.  Ms. Bastin said that’s correct.  Mr. Swafford questioned using their name during a meeting.  Ms. Bastin replied it is okay to say offender or criminal during the meeting.  Mr. Swafford suggested emailing their recommendations for the resolutions to the Town Attorney.  Ms. Brown will contact groups in Bloomington who use community service.  It can be limited to non-violent crimes.

 

Scott Oldham advised there will three proposed ordinances dealing with pawn brokers, second-hand shops and scrap metal dealers available for a first reading at the next meeting. 

 

Supervisors Comments

 

Sandra Hash explained the Monroe County Fall Festival is requesting a street closure and to put signs at the gateways advertising the Fall Festival dates.  The signs will be 3’ x 5’.  As the Fall Festival is a nonprofit they are requesting the $20 sign permit fee be waived. 

 

Connie Griffin, Director of Planning, advised an email with the request would have to be sent to Tony Moore. He will send a permit which will be attached to a Town Permit.

 

Sandra Hash advised the road would have to be closed on Park Street from Temperance to Ritter from 2:00 on September 19th to midnight on September 21st.  Temperance will be closed for the parade on Saturday.

 

Scott Oldham entertained a motion to waive the $20 fee for the signs and allow the signs to be put up in the gateway locations with INDOT’s approval.  Dan Swafford made a motion to waive the $20 fee for the signs and allow the signs to be put up in the gateway locations with INDOT’s approval.  Phillip Smith seconded.  Roll Call Vote:  Scott Oldham – yes; Dan Swafford – yes; Dianna Bastin - Yes and Phillip Smith– yes.  Motion carried 4-0.

 

Scott Oldham entertained a motion to close Park Street from Temperance to Ritter on September 19th from 2:00 p.m. or any such time as the Town Marshal deems it necessary for public safety and open them back up on September 21st at 0000 hours.  Dianna Bastin made a motion to close Park Street from Temperance to Ritter on September 19th from 2:00 p.m. or any such time as the Town Marshal deems it necessary for public safety and open them back up on September 21st at 0000 hours.  Phillip Smith seconded.  Roll Call Vote:  Scott Oldham – yes; Dan Swafford – yes; Dianna Bastin - Yes and Phillip Smith– yes.  Motion carried 4-0.

 

Supervisors Comments

 

Connie Griffin, Director of Planning, announced there will be a busy agenda for the meeting on September 23, 2013, because there will be three code changes.  The public hearing notices have been published for work on Chapters 94, 96.01 and 152.  She is proposing to set hers back two weeks for the next meeting.  Mr. Oldham moved the chicken ordinance to two weeks later and the others can proceed as scheduled.

 

Mike Farmer, Ellettsville Utilities, explained they’re currently in conversion mode for new software for the general ledger, accounts payable, accounts receivables and payroll.  They’re starting to see light from the conversion.  It has been very difficult.  BS & A has been good about sending extra help and were here for three weeks.  This is the fourth week for utility billing.  There has been difficulty balancing and it has been resolved.  He thinks everything will be fine.

 

Scott Oldham is very concerned with the amount of time it took for the conversion and the problems that have crept up.  For the amount of money that was paid four weeks is a lot before they started training.  Is this the last of the problems they’re anticipating or are they still in fix it mode?  Mr. Swafford replied he thinks they’ve just scratched the surface.  Mr. Farmer said they have fixed the problem that caused the delay in utility billing.  Basically, it was a balancing issue.  They called the State of Board of Accounts for being off a few dollars.  He suggested document it and move forward.  It was basically the way the system rounded sales tax.  It has been resolved.  Mr. Oldham asked Ms. Hash the issues she had.

 

Sandra Hash explained it is much like Utilities.  When they came to train the implementation and training team had to implement.  There were spot checks and they found mistakes.  When there was an issue it would have to be fixed before they could proceed.  The conversion wasn’t completed the day they arrived.  They arrived on a Monday and didn’t receive the conversion data until Wednesday.  They did do some training before the conversion because the software was already installed.  Every time they started to do a new module of training there was implementation that had to be done.  She has received all of the training.  They started with her office two weeks before they started with Utilities and the same thing happened with Utilities.  The man who came didn’t have time to train because he was implementing the program and making sure it balanced with the previous software.  Another person has been sent for another week of training with Utilities.  Mr. Farmer noted they were ill-prepared when they started but that doesn’t make the software a bad product It came well recommended.  It’s difficult to move from Komputrol to the new software.

 

Dan Swafford stated Komputrol was very outdated and to convert to new software is extremely difficult.  He warned BS & A they were a little bit behind and they said it wouldn’t be any problem.  He’s aggravated because they didn’t really train the Town they were training themselves.  Have they charged any additional for the training?  Mr. Farmers said there is no charge for it.  They were ill-prepared, they sent people who shouldn’t have been sent and they didn’t send their ace hitters.  They described all of their grievances to BS & A and it was bad the first few weeks.  Mr. Oldham commented it’s wasn’t as if software was purchased at Wal-Mart.  They paid over $50,000 and it has taken this long to get online and there are still issues greatly concerning to the Council.  They’re concerned and need for the experts to say it isn’t working before they get too deeply into it.  Mr. Swafford spoke with a couple of the employees today and they seemed really frustrated.  One of them told them they hadn’t had any training at all.  He concurs with Mr. Oldham in that he is really concerned with how long this is taking.  Mr. Farmer said he is as well.  Ms. Hash added everyone has been trained on cash receipts and Utilities has been trained on miscellaneous receipts.  They haven’t been trained on billing.  Mr. Swafford requested they be informed if the same issues persist.  Maybe the attorney can send a letter.  Mr. Farmer said they have been on top of it including talking with their main person almost every day.  He was forceful and their interest has been conveyed to BS & A.

 

Dianna Bastin said balancing the books was because of $2.  Mr. Farmer noted they always balance. Ms. Hash added it was utility billing they were having the problems with.  BS & A carries out three decimal places and Komputrol carries two.  When a few pennies are changed on 4,900 customers then the books will be off.  Mr. Oldham asked Mr. Farmer to convey to BS & A the Town Council is distressed.

 

Mike Farmer announced hydrant flushing is going well.

 

Adjournment

 

Scott Oldham entertained a motion to adjourn.  Dianna Bastin made a motion to adjourn.  Dan Swafford seconded.  Motion carried.  Scott Oldham adjourned the meeting at 7:24 p.m.