City of Batavia Committee of the Whole met March 21.
City of Batavia Committee of the Whole met March 21.
Here is the minutes provided by the Committee:
Chair Brown called the meeting to order at 7:30 pm.
1. Roll Call
Members Present: Chair Brown; Ald. Russotto, Atac (entered at 7:31pm), Chanzit, Stark, Wolff, Salvati, O’Brien, Callahan, Meitzler, Mueller (entered at 7:33pm), Botterman, and McFadden
Members Absent: Ald. Cerone
Also Present: Mayor Schielke; Glen Autenrieth, Batavia Police Department; Kevin Drendel, Legal Counsel; Chris Aiston, Economic Development Consultant; Laura Newman, City Administrator; and Jennifer Austin-Smith, Recording Secretary
2. Approve Minutes for February 28 and March 7, 2017
Motion: To approve the minutes for February 28 and March 7, 2017
Voice Vote: 14 Ayes, 0 Nays, 0 Absent All in favor. Motion carried.
3. Items to be Removed/Added/Changed
There were no items to be removed, added or changed.
4. Matters From the Public (For Items Not on Agenda)
Gregory Brown, owner of a micro-mini teacup pig, asked the Committee of the Whole (COW) for permission to walk his pig in downtown Batavia. He explained that his pig is not a farm animal but rather a well-loved pet. He asked for the ordinance to be revised to allow for him to walk his pig in the downtown. Newman explained that there is nothing in the ADA that would prohibit us from having an ordinance that did not allow someone to have a pig as a pet and it is a matter of choice to allow a pig in the downtown area. Chair Brown asked staff to send the ordinance to the COW and schedule this discussion for one month from now at a future COW meeting. Wolff stated that the ordinance should follow the leash laws that apply to dogs. The leash law should apply to other animals that we decide to have in this ordinance. Callahan stated that the ordinance should address animals being allowed in businesses with food. He asked that the pet not be in areas that serve or sell food. The COW concluded that until a final decision is made, the micro-mini teacup pig owner would not be fined.
5. Discussion: Downtown Parking Time Limit Enforcement CS
Newman stated that the downtown parking map is available on the City’s website. The map has been color coded to show what the various time limits are. Newman explained that there is no parking in the downtown area that is not time limited which could be difficult for employees and business owners to park. Staff would like to designate some spaces at the Art Stop and the Larsen Becker parking lots as non-restrictive spaces. The various employees of the local businesses could use those parking spaces. The parking lots in question are well lit, open and visible.
Jaime Saam, Batavia MainStreet, addressed the COW. She stated that we do have a very big problem with employees and business owners parking on the prime street parking. The issue is that designated employee and business owner parking needs to be a rule for every business. She explained that a designated location for employee parking shows that we are making a way for more parking for customers. Salvati asked for MainStreet to gather information on how many parking spaces our downtown businesses would need for their employees. Saam agreed to count vehicles and employees.
Detective Autenrieth expressed concern about the displacement of two-dozen permit parking residents once the State Street parking deck is removed. Having the parking spaces at the Art Stop and Larsen Becker parking lots were considered to not have permit parking and less signage by the Committee. Brown agreed with staff to utilize the Larson Becker and the Art Stop parking lots for overnight permit parking, employee and business owner parking. Detective Autenrieth stated that this could be a temporary solution until construction is completed and then we could restart something.
Chair Brown asked that staff look at the entire downtown parking situation and come back with a recommendation. O’Brien asked that the parking plan eventually be made into a comprehensive plan for all of downtown, including shared parking over the weekends. Meitzler suggested valuing the parking spaces and explained if you are further out from the central downtown you would want more duration available to park there. For Wilson, make that prime space and the larger duration farther out from the downtown.
Newman suggested offering overtime to police officers who would like to assist us in enforcing those time limits to see how the program goes. Chair Brown stated that it is up to the City Administrator and the police department on how many hours police officers should work. There should be no micromanaging how many hours the police officers work by the COW.
The Committee discussed the possibility of the City taking care of snow removal and striping of shared parking lots. No offer to take care of shared parking lots was decided upon. No parking meters were suggested. Newman would like a way for those doing parking enforcement to have some type of technology in order to enforce timed parking. She stated that it should be something considered in the near or long term.
6. Project Status
Newman reported on the branding meeting held today at 5pm. Newman reported the consultants had conversations with eighteen individuals in the community from all walks of life. She stated that the next stage is to take that information and build a questionnaire to distribute to as many people as possible. The consultant has a goal of least 1,000 responses to that questionnaire.
Newman stated that she has developed a plan to review executive session minutes. Typographical corrections would be made and then the minutes would be brought to City Council for review and approval on whether or not the minutes are to be held or released. Wolff stated that he would not like any FOIA requests for the closed session minutes regarding property acquisition for the current project since are not done with negotiations yet. Drendel stated that the Open Meetings Act does not require the release of any minutes although it is implied for closed session. Drendel would put out a memo to address a process and what the standard is for making determinations to release.
Brown stated that there is a motorcycle continuously parked on the River Street sidewalk. Detective Autenrieth stated that it would be taken care of.
8. Executive Session:
a. Purchase of Real Property
Motion: To enter into executive session for the purchase of real property
Voice Vote: 13 Ayes, 0 Nays, 1 Absent Motion carried.
The COW entered executive session at 8:37pm and exited at 9:21pm.
There being no other business to discuss, Brown asked for a motion to adjourn the meeting at 9:21pm; Made by Wolff; Seconded by Salvati. Motion carried.
Organizations in this Story
100 North Island Avenue
Batavia, IL - 60510