City Council Regular Meeting - Minutes

Mon., May. 22, 2017

Mayor Drotzmann called the regular meeting to order at 7:00pm. Present were Councilors Hardin, Beas-Fitzgerald, Myers, Kirwan, Primmer, and Smith. Councilors Gutierrez and Davis were excused. Staff members in attendance were City Manager Byron Smith, City Attorney Gary Luisi, Assistant City Manager Mark Morgan, Chief Edmiston, Ron Sivey, Clint Spencer, Larry Fetter, Heather LaBeau, Amy Palmer, Tom Creasing, Emma Porricolo, and Lilly Alarcon-Strong. News media present was Jade McDowell from the East Oregonian. The pledge of allegiance was given.

Portland’s Rose Festival Parade Float Presentation

Karie Walchli, with the Rose Festival Float Committee, presented the Council with updates on the progress of the float for Portland’s Rose Festival Parade on June 10th. Mrs. Walchli stated the float has very specific guidelines they must follow, ie: the float must fit closely around a golf cart, all float materials must be organic. The organic materials the Committee has decided to use are: rice, seeds, flowers, moss, coconut, etc. The Rose Festival Foundation has been great to work with, very helpful, and supportive. Final construction of the float will be completed in Portland, on Friday, June 9th. Mrs. Walchli thanked the amazing and creative members of the Committee, as well as great local businesses that have worked hard helping create the float and/or donated materials and supplies, to include: Ross Machine, Marlette, Ross Brandt Electric, Home Depot, and Ace Hardware. Mrs. Walchli thanked the City of Hermiston for allowing the Committee to represent the community by participating in this project and event. Mrs. Walchli also stated the Float will be used in the Umatilla County Fair Parade as well.

The Council thanked Mrs. Walchli and the Committee for all of their work on the float.

Citizen Input on Non-Agenda Items

Louie Smith Hwy 207- stated for the last two years, Luke Dines has been running a wet silage operation very close to his property. The odor caused by the smell of rotting carrots, onions, green beans, potatoes, etc is overwhelmingly nauseating and he can’t even have the windows in his home open or invite family and friends out to his property because of the smell. And, at times, thousands of flies surround and swarm his property as well. Mr. Smith stated he had been working with Mike Marcum in Code Enforcement, Mike Marcum and after a court date in January 2017, Mr. Dines had begun complying with the court order; unfortunately, that only lasted 2 weeks. Since that time, Mr. Dines has gated the property, posted no trespassing signs, and continues to run the wet silage at all hours of the day and night. Mr. Smith stated he understands there is a process, but feels like he has been patient enough and would like something done sooner rather than later, as his family has no quality of life living under these conditions.

Mike McDonough Hwy 207- stated he understands there is due process but would like to know what actions are being done now and will the process be made public and/or be an agenda item.

City Manager Smith stated the City has been working on a solution regarding this issue. Unfortunately, the City is unable to disclose much information about an ongoing case; but, reassured Mr. Louie Smith and Mr. Mike McDonough that the City is moving forward on many different ends but will contact them with updates and have the issue open to the public when able.

Mayor Drotzmann stated the City is working to address these issues and takes there concerns very seriously. The City must maintain due process, and unfortunately, this just takes time.

Consent Items

  1. Councilor Primmer moved and Councilor Kirwan seconded to approve all Consent Agenda items, to include:
  2. Minutes of the May 8th, work session and regular City Council meeting.          
  3. Minutes of the April 12th, Planning Commission meeting.
  4. Minutes of the April 17th, Hispanic Advisory Committee meeting.
  5. Liquor License Application- “Limited On-Premises Sales” for Campfire and Smoke Cowboy Grub located at 235 E. Main Street.
  6. Final Plat – Peterson Replat, SE Kelli Blvd.
  7. Final Plat – Desert Shadows Phase 3, NW Eucalyptus Drive.
  8. Announcement of standing committee vacancies for the unexpired portion of a:
    1. 3-year term beginning July 1st, 2017 and ending June 30th, 2020
      Hispanic Advisory Committee- positions #1 and #2
    2. 4-year term beginning July 1st, 2017 and ending June 30th, 2021
      Library Board- positions #3, #4, and #5
      Deadline to Apply is May 30th, 2017.

Motion carried unanimously.

City Code Waiver from the Hermiston Downtown District Group for Food Truck Vendors

Main Street Coordinator Emma Porricolo stated one of the Downtown District Group Committees (they were divided into four) that focuses on getting more retail and restaurant business into the downtown area, also wanted to focus on bringing in more people into the existing downtown business as well. And they thought a good way to bring people into Main Street would be to allow a variety of different food truck vendors onto Main Street, from Hwy 395 to 3rd Street for the First Thursday of the Month Event on the evening of July 6th. In order to do this, the Council must approve a temporary waiver to allow more food trucks than what is allowed by the City Ordinance.

Miss. Porricolo stated if approved, the Downtown Group will begin to reach out to different Food vendors in and out of the community to make sure there is a variety of food being sold. The Group also hopes to, in the future, broaden the event with not only food trucks, but with live entertainment as well.

After some discussion, and with encouragement, Councilor Primmer moved and Councilor Myers seconded to approve the waiver request from the Downtown District Group for food truck vending. Motion carried unanimously.

April Financial Report

Councilor Hardin moved and Councilor Kirwan seconded to approve the April Financial Report as prepared and presented by Finance Director Amy Palmer. Motion carried unanimously.

EOTEC Report

Finance Director Amy Palmer presented the EOTEC Financial Report to the Council.

City Manager Smith stated the County Commissioners, at today’s meeting, indefinitely tabled the request to rename E. Airport Rd.

City Manager Smith presented the Council with updates and recent photos of EOTEC, to include:

barns; grounds; shared bathroom building with the Fair and Rodeo; Rodeo Arena to include: bleachers, announcers stand, speaker system, video board instead of signs placed around the arena, and boxed seats; mercantile building; small animal barns, including office space and bathrooms; large animal barns; swine barns; rough stock pins; and asphalt and landscaping updates. City Manager Smith stated there is a lot of construction happening at EOTEC and final pieces of the fence and irrigation water bids will come back soon as well.

The Council asked questions regarding the food trailers; parking, both on and off of EOTEC property; and the Rodeo Arena.

City Manager Smith stated the EOTEC Board has found a company that can build new food trailers for about the same price as what the Board was going to spend on used trailers. Two food trailers will be made for the contracts the Fair has with the Hospital and Lions Club.

Traffic from Ott Rd will be for contestant parking only. City Manager Smith stated he will get updates from the Fair and share with the Council as they have been working on an off-site parking plan.

The previous Rodeo Arena capacity was 7,000 guests; the new Rodeo Arena will accommodate 9,000 guests.

City Manager Smith reminded the Council that the next Joint City and Council meeting to discuss EOTEC will be on Thursday, June 1st at 6:00pm at EOTEC.

Committee Report’s

Transit Committee:

Councilor Primmer stated the Committee met today to review the YTD route and ridership information, and will possibly change the route starting July 1st to take out a stop that has low ridership or not being used and allow for a 5th full loop route.

Hispanic Advisory Committee:

Councilor Beas-Fitzgerald stated the Committee had presentations from Charter Communications, who offers reduced rates for low income individuals and households; Kit Morgan from  Redeemer Episcopal Church in Pendleton, who would like to establish some sort of community outreach for undocumented people in the surrounding area; Maria Duron from the School District who gave information about the recent TV show, 13 Reasons Why, and asked that parents speak to their children about the very real impact this TV show can have in their lives; and, Committee Chair Jose Garcia, is beginning a Spanish Speaking Grief Counseling Group as there was none in the area and it is much needed. This idea for a Spanish Speaking Grief Counseling Group was a community request that came to the Committee.

Cinco de Mayo Committee:

Councilor Beas-Fitzgerald stated although this is not a City Committee, the Committee will meet next month to address issues related to this year’s festivities, to include: parking, pedestrians crossing W Elm Street, noise, trash at UEC, and etc.

Mayor Drotzmann asked if the Committee had a better idea on how many people attended the event.

Parks and Recreation Director Larry Fetter stated it’s difficult to say for sure, but he believes about 10,000 attended to the two day event.

Mayor Drotzmann congratulated Councilor Beas-Fitzgerald and the Cinco de Mayo Committee on a well-attended and great community event.

Mayor’s Report

Mayor Drotzmann stated he spoke with the Realtor Board about City updates and priorities. They also addressed their issues of lack of area housing and asked what the City is doing to address this issue. Mayor Drotzmann stated he was able to give them peace of mind knowing that this is issue is a top priority to the City and the City is taking action through the Planning Department and Planning Commission to work on ways to help make changes and improve the situation. Mayor Drotzmann stated he also spoke with a housing developer who has been working with the Planning Department and Commission about ways the City can help the housing development. The developer was very complimentary regarding the help he has received from City Planner Clint Spencer and his department.

Mayor Drotzmann stated he, City Manager Smith and Assistant City Manager Morgan will be speaking tomorrow at the Chamber Breakfast regarding the state of the City.

Mayor Drotzmann thanked the Citizen Budget Committee Members for attending the meeting last week, and sated the process went very well and was very easy to follow and process. The budget approval will be presented at the June 12th City Council meeting.

City Manager’s Report

City Manager Smith stated the Parks and Recreation Department obtained the final numbers for the Recycling Day Event. Some recycling items were up in tonnage and some were down; but overall, the numbers were still good. Tires continue to be the number 1 recycled product, up by 10 tons with a total of 35 tons. The City believes the long and harsh winter weather played a major part with households not participating in the event as they were unable to declutter.


There was no other business and Mayor Drotzmann adjourned the regular meeting at 8:19 pm. 

/s/ Dave Drotzmann, Mayor

/s/ Lilly Alarcon-Strong, Assistant City RecorderRDER

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