City Council Regular Meeting - Minutes
Mayor Drotzmann called the regular meeting to order at 7:00 pm. Present were Councilors Myers, Gutierrez, Primmer, Hardin and Beas-Fitzgerald. Councilors Smith, Kirwan and Davis were absent. Staff members in attendance were City Manager Byron Smith, City Attorney Gary Luisi, Assistant City Manager Mark Morgan, Chief Edmiston, Amy Palmer, Larry Fetter, Ron Sivey, Bill Schmittle, Judge Creasing, Marie Baldo and Heather LaBeau. News media present were Jade McDowell of the East Oregonian and Michael Cane of NE Oregon Now. The pledge of allegiance was given.
City Manager Smith recognized Marie Baldo. Ms. Baldo is retiring as the Library Director after serving in the position for 12 years. Mayor Drotzmann thanked her for her service to the City and her commitment to the community.
Councilor Primmer moved and Councilor Hardin seconded to approve all Consent Agenda items, to include:
- Minutes of the June 13th, regular City Council meeting.
- Minutes of the April 18th, Hispanic Advisory Committee.
- Recommendation of standing committee vacancies for the unexpired portion of a 3-year term beginning July 1st, 2016 and ending June 30th, 2019.
Hispanic Advisory Committee-Positions #4 Jose Garcia and #7 Roy Nayar Barron.
Motion carried unanimously.
League of Oregon Cities Legislative Agenda
Councilor Myers moved and Councilor Beas-Fitzgerald seconded to adopt the top four legislative priorities as (H) Property Tax Reform-Market Value/Local Control, (M) Restore Recreational Immunity, (Z) Comprehensive, Multi-modal Transportation Funding and Policy Package and (CC) Increased Funding for Water Supply Development. Motion passed unanimously.
Senior & Disabled Taxi Ticket Program
Assistant City Manager Mark Morgan presented the Hermiston Taxi Ticket Program Manual to the Councilors. The manual provides more detail to the existing policy and establishes what is expected of both the taxi company and the taxi riders. City staff reviewed the document with a group of taxi riders and stakeholders. Taxi Ticket prices were last increased in 2010. This proposal increases the price of a ticket by $.25, for a total price to the rider of $2.25 per ticket.
Jeannette Byrnes residing at 3317 Kuhn Lane, stated that social security income doesn’t increase more than a little bit and $.25 a ticket makes a big difference for those on fixed incomes. She feels that the $.25 won’t help the City budget much but will hurt riders.
Councilor Gutierrez moved and Councilor Primmer seconded to approve the established policy document for the Senior and Disabled Taxi Ticket Program and increase the compensation to the taxi company by $.25 but do not increase the taxi ticket price for the seniors and disabled, the City will pay the difference. Motion passed unanimously.
May Financial Report
Councilor Primmer moved and Councilor Gutierrez seconded to approve May’s financial report as prepared and presented by Finance Director Amy Palmer. Motion carried unanimously.
Parks & Recreation Report: Councilor Primmer stated that the Parks and Rec committee toured the parks and walked through Steelhead Park. Larry Fetter said he is negotiating with ODFW to transfer the property to the City and should have the opportunity to receive it before the year end.
Community Enhancement Committee: Mayor Drotzmann stated the Committee will meet on June 29th to discuss public art policies.
Hispanic Advisory Committee: Councilor Gutierrez said there will be 2 positions that need filled for the committee. Morrow County is considering migrant housing located at the bombing range.
Mayor Drotzmann stated he represented everyone at a Umatilla Morrow County Head Start lunch with the mayor and children. He enjoyed the opportunity to visit with those in attendance.
Councilor Beas-Fitzgerald invited everyone to participate in the Neon Nights 5k at Oxbow Trail on July 9th. This year’s event will benefit a trainer at Club 24 who has stage 4 cancer.
The annual Stars & Stripes Pool party will be July 4 at the aquatic center. Tickets can be purchased at the aquatic center for the pool party. There are also activities at Butte Park beginning at 1pm. The fireworks will be at 10pm.
Councilor Gutierrez asked when grass would be planted at Newport Park. Larry Fetter answered that it is currently holding too much water to seed.
City Manager Smith stated the Public Notice of the November 8, 2016 General Election has been noticed and posted. The at-large council seats are up in November. The incumbents for those positions are Councilors Hardin, Gutierrez, Primmer and Kirwan.
City Manager Smith gave a brief update on EOTEC. The barn bids came in a little high, Frew Development is helping work through alternatives. The pre-bid meeting for the rodeo grounds is scheduled for tomorrow.
Mayor Drotzmann adjourned the regular meeting at 8:08 pm.