MINUTES OF BOARD MEETING
TRUSTEES OF BARTON HILLS VILLAGE
February 19, 2007
The regular meeting of the Board of Trustees was called to order by President Laporte at 6:04 PM at the Village Hall.
ROLL CALL Present: Trustees Al-Awar, Boddie, Bogat, Butterwick, Laporte, Lindstrom, MacKrell and Wilkes. Absent: None.
Others attending: Zoning/Planning Administrator (ZPA) Perry, Atty. Reading, Supt. Esch, BHMC Vice President Donna Kelly, VAC Committee member John MacKrell and architect Ed Wier.
PUBLIC COMMENT Mrs. Kelly noted that the BHMC Board of Directors is reviewing a request for lot reconfiguration from the Klingers/Hensingers on Corrie Road. The proposal is still in preliminary stages and is unusual in that the lots in question have a legal history. The BHMC Directors are proceeding carefully in their efforts to make the right decisions. Mrs. Kelly also gave support to the suggestion that additional opportunities be added to the BHV Trustee meetings so the public in attendance can comment on issues discussed during the meeting. Mr. MacKrell asked if public comment would be received during the VAC portion of the meeting; Mrs. Laporte replied yes.
TRUSTEE RESIGNATION Randolph Perry has resigned from his position as BHV Trustee in order to accept an appointment to the Ann Arbor Township Board of Trustees. Since the resignation needed to be effective immediately, Mrs. Laporte gave acceptance by email.
Motion Mrs. MacKrell moved that the resignation of Trustee Randolph Perry and acceptance by President Laporte as indicated by letter/email be affirmed by the BHV Board of Trustees. Mr. Butterwick seconded; the motion carried.
Mr. Perry will continue in his appointed position as BHV Zoning and Planning Administrator (ZPA). A letter will be sent to the residents soliciting candidates for the vacant position, which will be filled by a Trustee vote at the March 19, 2007 Trustee meeting as directed by the BHV Charter. The following resolution was proposed by Mr. Lindstrom, seconded by Mr. Al-Awar and adopted.
BE IT RESOLVED that since Randolph Perry has served as Village Trustee for two
years; and, whereas he has faithfully offered service and carried out the assignments
of this volunteer position for the good of Barton Hills Villageduring those years, the
members of the Board of Trustees wish to thank Mr. Perry for this dedication and loyalty
to the Village Trustees and the residents of Barton Hills and express appreciation and
extend their best wishes to him.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this resolution be recorded in the minutes of the
Barton Hills VillageBoard of Trustees.
BUILDINGS COMMITTEE Mr. Lindstrom reviewed the objectives of the Village Administration Center (VAC) Committee established in the summer of 2005:
--develop a cost effective plan to provide adequate working space for the administration of the Village of Barton Hills and appropriate storage to satisfy the state and federal legal requirements for record storage;
--ensure that this plan is coordinated with other potential plans for building construction by the Village; and
--make recommendation to the BHV Board of Trustees and, ultimately, to the residents of the Village in an open forum.
He also proposed four topics for his presentation: 1) timing, 2) presentation of preliminary plans, 3) next steps, and 4) motion.
Timing. The economy is currently in a bit of a downturn and contractors who would otherwise not be interested in such a small project may be available. Also, elections will be held for both BHV and BHMC Boards this September. The VAC Committee feels it would be wise to take advantage of the economic situation and the current continuity of board membership by moving the project along.
Preliminary Plans. The site plan distributed to Trustees with the agenda shows the proposed location of the building on the Garden Site, although the structure may be a bit more parallel rather than angled in relation to the oak tree, and the meeting room may be at the opposite end to allow more convenient access between the office space and the maintenance area for the Superintendent. Limited parking (in addition to what is currently available in the area) is proposed to be located behind the tin shed.
Mr. Lindstrom stressed the “big picture” perspective of the discussion, asking that comments about details be emailed to him to be relayed to the VAC Committee. The question to be answered is “Are we on the right track?” with the building concept for this site. Mr. Boddie arrived
Architect Ed Wier presented elements of the floorplan and elevations, noting again that the plans were preliminary. Regarding the floorplan:
--The covered porch clearly identifies the entryway.
--The lobby includes coat racks, a sliding window to the Clerk’s office and a focal display space where historic photos or other items could be placed.
--The meeting room is about 22’ x 30’ with attached storage for tables/chairs.
--Handicap-accessible bathrooms are centrally located.
--The office area contains three offices (each about 13’ x 10’), two storage rooms and a small kitchenette in the hallway. It has an exterior access door, and can be locked as a unit separate from the lobby/meeting area.
Mr. Lindstrom noted that the plan is very similar to the Sylvan Township Hall (designed by Mr. Wier) except on a smaller scale (3 instead of 6 offices). Mr. Lindstrom has toured that building and talked with the Township Supervisor who said they were quite happy with the facility.
Comments from Trustees included:
--The window to the Clerk’s office is a good idea so people can do business easily.
--The size of the meeting room is a bit wider and about the same length as the current fire hall space.
--The meeting space is flexible enough to be used for elections.
--An accessible bulletin board, such as a glass one outside, would be helpful for public notices.
--What about utilities? Reply: These will be in the basement (4’ or 8-9’ basement, still being discussed); or if a slab is chosen then room in the building will be designated (the building may have to be a bit larger to accommodate a utilities area). Soil tests indicate the water table is not a problem; also lots of sand for the septic field. The design will be modified to include a stairway if a full basement is chosen (4’ basement would be accessed by a trap door).
--There are advantages to a full basement, i.e. relatively inexpensive space to build, easier access to utilities equipment, space for non-records “stuff” (such as picnic supplies). The thinking towards a 4’ space includes no established need for a bigger space that will just accumulate extra stuff and reduced cost to construct. Having the utilities under rather than above the main space offers flexibility if new technology or additional space is desired in the future.
--Is there enough storage space? It doesn’t look very big, and that’s a main goal of the project. Reply: The two storage rooms are adequate for “dead” storage—one is designed to hold the safe and flat document file while the other will have wire shelving to hold boxes, which will accommodate more material than filing cabinets. “Active” storage will be in the offices, which can hold three-five file cabinets each for records being used more frequently. The storage space dimensions are based on the count of current materials and projected needs compiled by the staff. We also have an approved retention schedule that determines what records need to be kept and for how long.
--The meeting room should have a pull-down projection screen.
--There is room in the hallway for shared office equipment such as a copier.
--The office space and meeting space are heated/cooled separately as needed.
--How “green” is this plan? Reply: This is a goal of the committee, and while it won’t be built exclusively of recycled materials, we will do what we can. Landscaping will also contribute to this factor.
--There seems to be much support for a full basement, since the water table is not a factor and the building doesn’t have to be raised considerably above grade level. This is in keeping with the Olmsted philosophy to keep the building nestled into the landscape rather than popping up from the site.
--A full basement may be hard to “sell” to the residents if it is not really necessary.
The Buildings Committee report was set aside temporarily for the hearing of the ZPA Report before Mr. Perry needed to leave.
ZONING/PLANNING ADMINISTRATOR Mr. Perry reviewed his written report on the Klingler proposal, stating that consideration of the zoning issues relevant to this request are premature until BHMC decisions are made, and he simply wanted BHV Trustees to be aware of the situation. Mrs. Kelly noted that Mrs. Klingler asked for postponement of the request until the March 2007 BHMC meeting.
BUILDINGS COMMITTEE (Continued) Mr. Wier commented on the elevations:
--The building is designed to be a simple form in keeping with the goal of cost effectiveness, but is not plain. Brick is recommended for the entire building because it looks best and has low maintenance. Siding was considered but not recommended; vinyl siding is not appropriate.
--Sandstone and/or brick banding can be added to provide visual interest.
--Varied roof heights also provide visual diversity, including the small roof over the entry way. Standard ceiling heights of 12’ (meeting space) and 9’ (offices) are proposed, with a drop ceiling of 8’ in the offices.
--Window and door treatments can be varied for architectural interest.
--Everything is ADA-compliant (handicap accessible). There are no steps at the entrances although the building will be one step above grade level to protect the wood framing.
--The elevation drawings are misleading—one is two-dimensional, the other in a perspective from above. The drawings are very basic right now; when color, landscaping and details are added the plan will look much better.
--Landscaping will also break up the straight lines of the building.
Trustee comments included:
--The pitch of the roof looks low. Reply: The pitch is 5:12; other pitches may look like a lot of roof, and this one seemed best.
--A smaller roof could be added above the large window for more interest.
--What about the longer overhang of a Frank Lloyd Wright style?
--There aren’t a lot of Prairie style homes in Barton Hills.
--There isn’t a consistent style in BHV at all; we have a lot of diversity.
--There was concern that the previous design was too fancy. We need to find the compromise between too simple and too much so the residents will support it.
--We also need the balance between cost effective and cheap, and the balance between appearance and cost.
--The drawings are preliminary, meaning a start. Another phase of greater detail would be the next step.
--There are a lot of viewpoints, and the committee has worked hard to identify and consider a wide variety of opinions.
--The parking seems inadequate. Seven more spaces don’t seem like enough. There is a safety concern in relying too heavily on the existing paved area for parking.
--Can we be more specific about the cost? Reply: More detailed drawings are needed to do so.
Mr. Lindstrom thanked the Trustees for their input and will take their comments back to the VAC Committee.
Next Steps. The plans will be presented to the BHMC Board of Directors at their meeting on Thursday, February 22, 2007 and then to the residents for their input. It is hoped that comments can be received in March, the revised plans can be developed in April and a vote on the land transfer held before mid-June when residents start to leave for vacations.
Motion. Mr. Lindstrom read a proposed motion, which was discussed and eventually withdrawn and replaced with the following revised motion. Mrs. MacKrell left
Motion The Barton Hills Board of Trustees has reviewed the preliminary site and building plans as presented by the Village Administration Center Committee on February 19 . The Board strongly supports the Committee’s progress to date and requests that the preliminary plans: (1) be reviewed with the BHMC Board as soon as possible (preferably at their February 22 meeting) and (2) be distributed to the members of the Barton Hills community during March. Using this approach, input can be received from both Boards and the residents prior to investing time and money in detailed building and landscaping plans.
The motion was seconded by Mr. Boddie and carried by unanimous vote. Appreciation was expressed to Mr. Lindstrom and the VAC committee for their very hard work. Mr. Lindstrom added that the committee members have given tremendous support and effort to satisfy the objectives of the project.
It was agreed to hold a special meeting of the BHV Board of Trustees in conjunction with the BHMC Board of Directors meeting on Thursday, February 22, 2007 beginning at 6:30 PMat the Village Hall to discuss the report and recommendations of the VAC Committee.
MINUTES Motion Mr. Boddie moved that the minutes of the January 15, 2007 Trustee meeting be approved as printed. Mr. Al-Awar seconded; the motion carried.
The minutes of the January 15, 2007 closed session were distributed, read by the Trustees and returned to Mrs. Esch for sealing. Motion Mr. Boddie moved that the minutes of the closed session be approved as printed. Ms. Bogat seconded; the motion carried.
Motion Mr. Boddie moved that the resolution to adopt a policy for the destruction of minutes from closed sessions be approved as printed. Ms. Bogat seconded; the motion carried. It was noted that the minutes from closed session are sealed for one year and one day and are not available to the public, but could be accessed by the Board of Trustees or by judicial order.
FINANCE Mrs. Redies read the cash balances and distributed the comparison report. She added that budget requests are due now so the budget can be approved prior to the end of the fiscal year on March 31.
It was asked if the VAC project would be included in the 2007-2008 budget. Mr. Boddie replied that the budget could be modified during the year to include the project when exact figures were set. The discussion then turned to the question of owning/leasing the site and the BHMC shareholder vote required to subdivide BHMC-owned land. Atty. Reading stated that he had spoken with BHMC Atty. Lloyd about the idea of leasing rather than buying property, noting that the current maintenance buildings are on land leased from BHMC. Mr. Reading was asked to further investigate this question.
Roads Mr. Al-Awar commended Supt. Esch and the Maintenance staff for their excellent care of the roads during the recent snowstorm. Ms. Bogat asked if something could be done about the recycling bin, which is difficult to access in the snow. Mr. Al-Awar replied that ordinarily the area would have been repaved under normal road maintenance, but had been put off in anticipation of doing so in conjunction with the VAC construction. It was agreed to add as a budget item the construction of a concrete pad for the recycling bin along the side of the salt shed, with enough room for two bins for easier access both for residents and for the recycling company.
BHCC Liaison No report.
Environmental Impact No report
Finance No report.
Long RangePlanning No report.
Personnel No report
Recreation No report.
Security No report.
Vehicles/Equipment No report.
Water No report.
Zoning No report.
Pool Mr. Al-Awar has received one bid to remove the pool, concrete deck and fence, and fill in the area with sand and 4” of topsoil for a price just under $10,000. He recommended that the building be left standing so residents using the tennis courts or Village Green could use the drinking fountain and bathrooms (which are not currently accessible). He also hoped to obtain one or two more bids for the job.
Motion Mr. Boddie moved that up to $10,000 be authorized for removal/fill-in of the pool area (not including the building); further that the current bid be accepted if no other bids are received. Mr. Lindstrom seconded; the motion carried.
Competitive Bid Policy. Mr. Reading referred to his opinion letter (distributed under cover) regarding the current BHV competitive bid policy, stating that the original policy was adopted to comply with a state statute that has since been rescinded. Board discussion included:
--If the Board has an idea of whom they want to do business with, the bid policy forces them to invite others to go through the process without much chance of being chosen.
--The Board can specify that they don’t want to adhere to the policy in a given situation.
--The Board has an obligation to taxpayers to be responsible with their money. The bid policy indicates that the Board has surveyed the marketplace and chosen the best bid rather than paying exorbitant prices with no comparisons.
--Bidding must be done ethically—only accepting bids from companies you would be willing to work with. This is not sealed bidding, where the Board is bound by rules to accept the lowest bid from anyone who wants to participate. Reputable companies you are willing to hire are invited to bid on a project and the decision is made based on specific factors such as established record, accountability etc. as well as price.
--Take the pool bid, for example. $10,000 sounds good, but maybe the going price is really only $5,000. The Board has a responsibility to determine the facts.
--The policy should give the Board the option to investigate companies and invite appropriate candidates to bid; a kind of pre-qualification process.
Mr. Reading asked if $20,000 was still the desired base amount for projects requiring bids; the Trustees agreed. He also verified that BHV is not required to publish bid invitations in the newspaper. Ms. Laporte asked Trustees to email Mr. Reading with any further comments about the bid policy, and asked Mr. Reading to update the current policy by removing mention of the rescinded state statute and revising it in any other way he deemed appropriate.
Public Comment Period. Discussion of the most appropriate ways to receive public comment led to the general agreement that public comment is most useful during the topic being discussed, and that such comment has been received in an orderly fashion by the President’s discretionary recognition of people who indicate they would like to speak by raising their hand; further that the President has the authority to monitor the length of time a person speaks on a particular issue and to maintain the decorum of the meeting.
The meeting was adjourned at 8:28 PM.
Jan Esch, Assistant Clerk