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SPECIAL MEETING OF THE COMMON COUNCIL

OF THE CITY OF EL MIRAGE

EL MIRAGE SENIOR CENTER

14010 N. EL MIRAGE RD

6:00 P.M. – MONDAY 23RD, 2004

 

MINUTES

 

CALL TO ORDER: Mayor Robles called the meeting to order at 6:30 pm.

 

ROLL CALL: Present were:  Mayor Robert Robles, Vice Mayor Michele Kern, Councilmembers Bruce Baker, Xavier G. Bedolla, Roy Delgado, Kathleen White, City Manager BJ Cornwall, Attorney Fredda Bisman, Police Chief Dick Yost, Fire Chief Roy Levenda, Finance Director Diana Betancourt, City Clerk Edith Hoover.

Absent was:  Councilmember Tensi Reed

 

Mayor announced that the City is providing an interpreter for anyone who would like that service.

 

SPECIAL AGENDA:

Consideration and action regarding convening into Public Hearing for the purpose of hearing public comment regarding the Water and Wastewater rate increase.

Councilmember Delgado made a motion to approve; seconded by Vice Mayor Kern.

 

VOTE:            Yea:    Baker, Bedolla, Delgado, Robles, Kern, White

Nay:               

Absent: Reed

                        Motion: Carried

 

Diana Betancourt explained that she would be presenting the rate financial aspect and Lucky Roberts, Water Services Manager, would be presenting a Regulatory Compliance Update.  Ken Martin of Black & Veatch & Sue Gibbs of Peacock Hislop were also there to answer questions.  Diana asked that all questions wait till the end of the presentation.  See attached presentation.

 

Lucky Roberts, Water Services Manager gave her presentation.  Kim Furphy explained part of this presentation.  See attached presentation.

 

BJ Cornwall spoke about the fact that like Diana said, the numbers presented tonight are estimates and that he assures the Council as well as the citizens that we will do our due diligence to make sure that we will not ask for one dollar less than what we need nor one dollar more and we are doing that as we speak and they will be presented for approval.  Restated that we have agreements with regulatory agency so we have to do something or we will not exist.  The only question is how much can we do it for and when we are prepared to bring those numbers before Council, we will and we will not bring them before they are ready.

 

Mayor Robles wanted to let everyone know that we just got word that long time resident Leroy Layton is in serious condition.  His son is El Mirage Police Sergeant Gary Layton.  Asks that we all send our prayers.  Asked if Council had any questions for staff.  There were none at this time.  Opened the meeting to the public asked that they state their name & address.

 

Harry C Weber 12746 W Soledad Does this apply to El Mirage only?  No, it would include the original square mile of Surprise.  Why weren’t they notified?  It was posted & advertised.

 

Fred Waterman 11201 N El Mirage Rd. The minimum usage has changed from 2000 to 3000 gallons?  It is currently 5000, under this proposal it would change to 2000.  Do we have people that are living using 5000 gallons?  25% of customers use 0 to 5000.  The average is 8000.  Over this 5 year period, where do you expect to make the most money from this?  The lower group or the higher group?  The higher group, that consists of 700 accounts.  He hopes that it is raised up to 5000 to help with conservation.  Are all the wells & tanks on one bond issue?  Yes, the City would bond issue would be for 5 years & the City would bond each year depending on the needs.  We are not getting a lump sum bond?  No.  Does that affect our rate?  No, currently it is a 20 year term we could look at 25 years.  I assume that would lower our monthly rate.  Yes it would.  After this is done will we meet capacity?  Yes if we build the 3 wells immediately and one every year after that.  We plan to bond each year since we may not need to bond as much if we can secure grants.

 

Maria Melgosa 14317 Primrose thinks the Council has funds somewhere because you are not going to be able to get money from the poor people.  Things have changed since she got here in 1972.  Regardless of who the Mayor is, we want someone honest.  The Council should work together for the poor people.

 

Francis Emanis 14110 N Poppy St. read bullet points from a study by the State regarding how affordable housing has changed.

 

Randy Thomas 12045 N. asked where the progress is in the City.  Time to change the leadership.  We need change what is going on in this City.

 

Christina Wensel 12721 W Greenway Rd. what happened to the original bond of 17 million.  Told that that is not on subject.  Diana Betancourt explained where the funds went.  Asked if any of the funds were misspent.  No, it gets audited.  That is not what we are here to discuss.

 

Esther Flores 13906 N. Luna questioned the bond information.  Vice Mayor Kern explained that they would borrow over 5 years but pay back over 25 years.  At one time they were looking at taking out one lump sum but now they are considering taking out a bond each year for only what was needed.  This is a working document.  What would the interest rate be?  We do not know yet.  Who is the bond tied to?  No one right now.  We have a current bond with Peacock Hislop.  They plan to refinance the 8 million that is still owed.

Sue Gibb explained that they are trying to get the best rate for the new bonds, the old bonds are at about 7% and they would look to refinance that.

 

Betty Domingas 14206 N Palm St. feels they are already paying higher water bills and there has to be another way.

 

Joe Ramirez 12902 W Peoria will to pay what it takes to stop the City from going bankrupt.  There are things being said that should not be about the money.  Anyone can go to City Hall & request these documents, don’t be lazy. 

 

Fred Waterman wants to know where people are coming up with this $140 a month bill.  It is ridiculous, who is telling you this.

 

Frank Hernandez 1313 El Frio St. doesn’t want to pay Scottsdale rates.  He thought PERC was supposed to take care of this problem.

 

Jesse Delarosa 14010 N Poppy St. why are houses being built when we can’t support the ones that are here?  Why weren’t these wells built with the development?  The City did not charge impact fees to the developers.  How soon will we see improvement?  We are in a study mode to see what our needs are.

 

Nancy Gibbons 13513 El Frio are we comparing these prices to surrounding communities?  Yes.  If we don’t do this what will happen?  Ultimately we would become County, Surprise or Glendale.  It is a matter of who will collect the money for the upgrades not who will pay it.  If El Mirage doesn’t exist we would pay higher rates then what is being presented. 

 

Alice Ortiz 13605 B St. Sorry to BJ he came into a mess.

 

Consideration and action regarding closing the Public Hearing and reconvening into Special Meeting.

Councilmember White made a motion to approve; seconded by Vice Mayor Kern.

 

VOTE:            Yea:    Baker, Bedolla, Delgado, Robles, Kern, White

Nay:               

Absent: Reed

Special Council Meeting Minutes 8/23/04

Page 4

 

                        Motion: Carried

 

ADJOURNMENT:

Vice Mayor Kern made a motion to adjourn at 8:00p.m.; seconded by Councilmember White.

 

VOTE:            Yea:    Baker, Delgado, Robles, Kern, White

Nay:

Absent: Reed

                        Motion: Carried