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Board of City Commissioners - October 9, 2017 Minutes

The Regular Meeting of the Board of City Commissioners of the City of Fargo, North Dakota, was held in the City Commission Room at City Hall at 5:00 o'clock p.m., Monday, October 9, 2017.
The Commissioners present or absent were as shown following:
Present: Gehrig, Grindberg, Piepkorn, Strand, Mahoney.
Absent: None.
Mayor Mahoney presiding.

The Mayor read a statement with the following information: This week is Fire Prevention Week with the theme “Every Second Counts, Plan 2 Ways Out;” representatives from long-term care facilities participated in an evacuation exercise at the Public Safety Building; the Library has scheduled community workshops in conjunction with its Strategic Planning Survey and staff members attended the ND Library Association convention in Grand Forks; public meetings are scheduled to introduce the Public Arts Master Plan; the Police Department hosted a community meeting at Public Health and took part in Coffee with a Cop Day; and the landfill will be available free October 14th through October 21st for fall cleaning.

Order of Agenda Approved:
Commissioner Piepkorn moved the Order of the Agenda be approved adding an item to the Consent Agenda as Item No. “12i” Application for Games of Chance for Homeward Animal Shelter for a raffle on 10/20/17, moving Item No. “6” from the Consent Agenda to the Regular Agenda and moving Item No. “47” to the beginning of the Regular Agenda
Second by Grindberg. All the Commissioners voted aye and the motion was declared carried.

Minutes Approved:
Commissioner Gehrig moved that the Minutes of the Regular Meeting of the Board held on September 25, 2017 be approved as read.
Second by Grindberg. All the Commissioners voted aye and the motion was declared carried.

Consent Agenda Approved:
Commissioner Grindberg moved the Consent Agenda be approved as follows:

1. 2nd reading, waive reading and final adoption of the following Ordinances; 1st reading, 9/25/17:
a. Rezoning Certain Parcels of Land Lying in Reeves Addition to the City of Fargo, Cass County, North Dakota.
b. Amending Sections 20-0401 and 20-0402 of Article 20-04 of Chapter 20 of the Fargo Municipal Code Relating to Use Regulations and Self-Service Storage.

2. Receive and file communication from Leo F.J. Wilking regarding the appeal of Aaron Cockfield appealing the decision of the Civil Service Commission and set a date for a hearing.

3. Receive and file communication from Mark A. Friese regarding the appeal of David Boelke appealing the decision of the Civil Service Commission and set a date for a hearing.

4. Renewal of BCBSND Dental Insurance, Avesis Vision Insurance and Mutual of Omaha Life Insurance effective 1/1/18 and transition to Mutual of Omaha Long-Term Disability Insurance.

5. Out-of-Grade pay request for Audra Stonefish in the Public Health Department.

6. Sole Source Procurement with Family HealthCare for annual medical interpreting services for an estimated amount of $36,000.00 (moved to the Regular Agenda).

7. Amendment to Development Agreement with DFI Roberts LLC.

8. Roberts Commons Condominium formation documents.

9. Appointment of Cass County State’s Attorney and Assistants as Special City Prosecutors.

10. Tax exemptions for improvements made to buildings:
a. Don R. Symington, 1110 3rd Avenue North Unit 603W (3 year).
b. Amy T. and Devin B. Mertes, 1537 4th Street North (5 year).
c. Brent A. and Jenel K. Wavra, 2719 28th Avenue South (5 year).
d. Ronald W. and Dawn D. Solberg, 1327 Oak Street North (5 year).
e. Ronald W. and Dawn D. Solberg, 1327 Oak Street North (5 year).
f. Dennis J. and Teresa M. Steinman, 1618 10th Street South (5 year).
g. Thomas R. and Carol A. Gustad, 3657 River Drive South (5 year).
h. Benjamin J. Wenger, 2402 7th Street North (5 year).

11. Site Authorization for Fargo Youth Hockey Association at H.A. Thompson and Sons Arena (previously the Teamsters Arena).

12. Applications for Games of Chance:
a. Bennett PTA for bingo from 10/13/17 to 4/13/18.
b. Nativity Elementary School for a raffle on 2/2/18.
c. Dan Hedrick Benefit for a raffle on 11/1/17; Public Spirited Resolution.
d. Nativity Church of Fargo for a raffle on 11/5/17.
e. United Way of Cass-Clay for a raffle on 10/20/17.
f. United Way of Cass-Clay for a raffle on 11/20/17.
g. United Way of Cass-Clay for a raffle on 11/15/17.
h. Fargo North Spartans for a raffle on 12/2/17.
i. Homeward Animal Shelter for a raffle 10/20/17.

13. Request from YMCA to hang banners in the skyway from December 1st to December 14th to promote their presence in downtown.

14. Request to extend the 2016/2017 snow hauling contracts with Master Construction, Diesel Dogs Trucking and Industrial Builders for the 2017/2018 snow season (RFP17012, RFP17013 and RFP17014).

15. Sole Source Procurement for the purchase of AMP salt brine additive from EnviroTech Services at a price of $2.76 per gallon.

16. Sole Source Procurement for the purchase of IceSlicer ice melt from EnviroTech Services at a price of $180.00 per ton.

17. Local match commitment letter for the FEMA Pre-Disaster Mitigation Grant application associated with Project No. WW1707.

18. Three-year contract with Fargo Public Schools for garbage collection services with the option to renew for two additional terms ending 10/31/23 and 10/31/26.

19. Amendment to the Emergency Management Joint Powers Agreement.

20. Cost Share Agreement with Cass County for the Completion of the
Multi-Hazard Mitigation Plan.

21. Fire Department budget adjustment and contract with the ND Division of Homeland Security for grant funding in the amount of $158,345.00 for the purchase of Regional Response Equipment and Training (CFDA #97.067).

22. Police Department budget adjustment and contract with the ND Division of Homeland Security for grant funding in the amount of $79,344.00 for the purchase of air-purifying respirators (CFDA 97.067).

23. Police Department budget adjustment and NDDOT Grant in the amount of $55,000.00 for Seatbelt, Impaired Driving, Distracted Driving Enforcement and Education Activities and Underage Drinking Enforcement (CFDA #20.616 and #20.600).

24. Advertisement of Request for Proposals for general engineering services for the Solid Waste, Water and Wastewater Utilities.

25. NDDOT State Aid Contract in the amount of $426,711.00 for transit funding.

26. Road Use Agreement with KCM, Kilbourne Construction Management, and DFI Roberts LLC for 625 2nd Avenue North.

27. Bid advertisement for Project No. UR-17-C.

28. Bid award to Ernst Trenching, Inc. in the amount of $262,410.00 for Fiber Optic Cable Installation and Incidentals Project No. TR-17-B1.

29. Contracts and bonds for Project Nos. FM-17-B1 and WA1510.

30. Bills in the amount of $25,151,027.96.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Request from Master Construction Company, Inc. to Conduct Work on Sundays for Improvement District Nos. BN-17-A1, BN-17-B1, BR-17-C1 and BR-17-F1 Approved:
Commissioner Grindberg moved the request from Master Construction Company, Inc. to conduct work on Sundays for Improvement District Nos. BN-17-A1 BN-17-B1, BR-17-C1 and BR-17-F1 be approved

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Request from Shermans, LLC to Conduct Work on Sundays for Improvement District No. BR-17-G Approved:
Commissioner Grindberg moved the request from Shermans, LLC to conduct work on Sundays for Improvement District No. BR-17-G1 be approved.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Request from Excavating Inc. to Conduct Work on Sundays for Project
Nos. FM-14-63 and FM-15-B2 Approved:

Commissioner Grindberg moved the request from Excavating Inc. to conduct work on Sundays for Project Nos. FM-14-63 and FM-15-B2 be approved.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Request from ICS, Inc. to Conduct Work on Sundays for Project No. FM-15-J1 Approved:
Commissioner Grindberg moved the request from ICS, Inc. to conduct work on Sundays for Project No. FM-15-J1 be approved.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Request from Opp Construction LLC to Conduct Work on Sundays for Improvement District No. No. PR-17-F1 Approved:
Commissioner Grindberg moved the request from Opp Construction LLC to conduct work on Sundays for Improvement District No. PR-17-F1 be approved.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Time Extension for Improvement District No. BN-17-A1 Approved:
Commissioner Grindberg moved approval of a time extension to September 12, 2018 for Improvement District No. BN-17-A1.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Time Extension for Improvement District No. BN-17-B1 Approved:
Commissioner Grindberg moved approval of a time extension to October 13, 2017 for Improvement District No. BN-17-B1.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Application for Early Building Permits for Improvement District No. BN-17-H1 Approved (Cottagewood 3rd Addition):
The Board received a Report of Action from the Public Works Projects Evaluation Committee (PWPEC) stating the committee reviewed three early building permits from J & O Real Estate LLC, all within Cottagewood 3rd Addition (Lot 1 Block 1, Lot 1 Block 2 and Lot 2 Block 2). They said the infrastructure work for this area has been bid under Improvement District No. BN-17-H1 and a deposit of $9,120.00 will be required.
Commissioner Grindberg moved the application for three early building permits for Improvement District No. BN-17-H1 within Cottagewood 3rd Addition be approved.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Application for an Early Building Permit for Improvement District No. BN-17-A1 Approved (5002 19th Avenue North):
The Board received a Report of Action from the Public Works Projects Evaluation Committee (PWPEC) stating the committee reviewed an application for an early building permit submitted by the owner, Timothy Landis, for his building at 5002 19th Avenue North. They said the infrastructure work for this area has been bid under Improvement District No. BN-17-A1 and a deposit of $10,000.00 will be required.
Commissioner Grindberg moved the application for an early building permit for Improvement District No. BN-17-A1 at 5002 19th Avenue North be approved.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Contract Amendment No. 1 for Improvement District No. BN-17-A0 Approved:
Commissioner Grindberg moved approval of Contract Amendment No. 1 for an increase of $75,877.00 for Improvement District No. BN-17-A0.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Final Balancing Change Order No. 2 for Improvement District No. NR-16-A1 Approved:
Commissioner Grindberg moved approval of Final Balancing Change Order No. 2 for an increase of $2,751.15 for Improvement District No. NR-16-A1.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Negative Final Balancing Change Order No. 3 for Improvement District No. NN-14-21 Approved:
Commissioner Grindberg moved approval of the Negative Final Balancing Change Order No. 3 in the amount of $-4,146.11 for Improvement District
No. NN-14-21.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Negative Final Balancing Change Order No. 5 for Improvement District No. BR-16-A1 Approved:
Commissioner Grindberg moved approval of the Negative Final Balancing Change Order No. 5 in the amount of $-31,583.90 for Improvement District
No. BR-16-A1.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Negative Final Balancing Change Order No. 4 for Improvement District No. NN-15-A1 Approved:
Commissioner Grindberg moved approval of the Negative Final Balancing Change Order No. 4 in the amount of $-12,735.50 for Improvement District
No. NN-15-A1.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Contract for P.C. Concrete Alley Paving and Incidentals Improvement District No. AN-17-G1 Approved:
Commissioner Grindberg moved approval of the Contract between the City of Fargo and Key Contracting, Inc. for P.C. Concrete Alley Paving and Incidentals Improvement District No. AN-17-G1 in the City of Fargo, North Dakota.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Contract Bond for P.C. Concrete Alley Paving and Incidentals Improvement District No. AN-17-G1 Approved:
Commissioner Grindberg moved approval of the following described Contract Bond as to sufficiency:
Western Surety Company, in the amount of $395,656.00, for P.C. Concrete Alley Paving and Incidentals Improvement District No. AN-17-G1 in the City of Fargo, North Dakota.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Resolution Adopted Supporting an Inclusive Community:
Commissioner Strand said the Human Relations Commission was asked to weigh in on an inclusive Resolution, the same as what has gone before the Moorhead City Council and will go before the West Fargo City Commission, making this a regional approach. He looks forward to this Board making a public stand for inclusion, he said, and being a positive community in that regard.
Human Relations Commission Chair Rachel Hoffman said the Resolution is a statement to show Fargo is a welcoming and inclusive community and there is no tolerance for hate and discrimination within the community.

Commissioner Strand offered the following Resolution and moved its adoption:
WHEREAS, The City and residents of Fargo establish that the City is an inclusive community, welcomes the contributions of all sectors and celebrates our diversity; and
WHEREAS, The global community has enacted numerous international human rights instruments, including the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination and made important advances in the struggle against racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance; and
WHEREAS, Racism and racial discrimination threaten human development because of the obstacles which they pose to the fulfillment to basic human rights to survival, security, development and social participation; and
WHEREAS, The City and residents of Fargo combat hate and its representatives while promoting equality, inclusiveness and equitable environments; and
WHEREAS, Organizations or individuals or doctrines promoting differentiation or superiority based on race, religion, gender identification, age, ability or country of origin are scientifically false, morally condemnable, hateful, socially unjust and dangerous and are merely expressions to create alarm at the manifestations of discrimination; and
WHEREAS, Municipal jurisdictions are often laboratories for determining public approaches to the challenges that face residents and businesses; and
WHEREAS, The ability of the citizens of Fargo to establish and maintain a welcoming and inclusive community and to foster respect for all persons, regardless of race, religion, gender identification, age, ability, country of origin.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, That the Board of City Commissioners of the City of Fargo, North Dakota, a Commission of democratically elected representatives, represent and support all members of the community and condemn acts of hate, violence or discrimination.

Second by Grindberg. On the vote being taken on the question of the adoption of the Resolution Commissioners Strand, Grindberg, Gehrig and Mahoney voted aye.
Commissioner Piepkorn voted nay.
The Resolution was adopted.

Discussion Regarding Special Assessments: Appropriate Staff Directed to Schedule a Meeting on Special Assessments and to Explore Alternative Options:
Commissioner Gehrig said he and Commissioner Strand would like the Board to meet in a brown bag meeting setting for further discussion on special assessments in new developments and to explore alternative options available. He said many residents have expressed concerns and it would be helpful to take a strong look at how new developments are assessed and explore options on how the practice may be improved. He said he would like the first step to be a meeting solely to discuss new developments, new homes and new buildings and how those work and see if there is a better way forward to lessen impacts. The topic of special assessments is a large discussion, he said, and an hour meeting may not be enough to cover all that ground. He said there are multiple types of special assessments and having them broken into segments would make for more effective conversations. He said that way if there are changes, it would not be a holistic change it would be taking parts to see if there is common ground.

In response to a question from Commissioner Grindberg as to whether interested parties such as the Home Builders Association would be invited, Commissioner Gehrig said as with all brown bag meetings, it will be open to the public. He wants to hear from staff how they assess specials, he said, and he hopes the public would come.

Commissioner Grindberg said if it becomes a two-step process, the developers and the Home Builders Association could be involved.

Commissioner Strand said it would be beneficial to get a common ground of understanding of how specials are handled.

Commissioner Piepkorn said he thinks the meeting is a good idea and he would like to hear from the Engineering Department. He said other cities do it differently and it would be good to have some comparison and better understanding. He said change just to make a change is not a good thing. He said he understands that one of the reasons things have been done as they are is to be able to control the quality of the work, making sure it is consistent and meets standards.

Commissioner Gehrig moved appropriate staff be directed to schedule a brown bag meeting within the next month to discuss special assessments and to explore alternative options available.

Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Gehrig, Strand, Grindberg, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Hearing on Appeal of the Board of Adjustment’s Denial of a Request for a Variance Continued to November 6, 2017 (3931 and 3949 37th Avenue South):
A Hearing had been set for September 11, 2017 on the appeal of an August 22, 2017 ruling of the Board of Adjustment denying the request for a variance for a proposed building to be constructed to a lower level elevation than would otherwise be required by the City’s Floodproofing Code, as referenced by Article 21-06 of the Fargo Municipal Code at 3931 and 3949 37th Avenue South.
At the September 11, 2017 Regular Meeting, the Hearing was continued to September 25, 2017.
At the September 25, 2017 Regular Meeting, the Hearing was continued to this day and hour; however, the Planning Department has requested the Hearing be continued to November 6, 2017.

Commissioner Piepkorn moved the Hearing be continued to 5:15 o’clock p.m., November 6, 2017.

Second by Gehrig. On call of the roll Commissioners Piepkorn, Gehrig, Grindberg, Strand and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Hearing on the Special Assessment List for Various Improvement Districts Approved:
A Hearing had been set for this day and hour on the special assessment list for the construction of the following Improvement Districts in the City of Fargo, North Dakota, all having been approved by the Special Assessment Commission on September 6, 2017; set the interest rate at 1% per annum over the net rate on bonds financing said projects:

Drain 10 Channel Repairs Improvement District No. 6237.
P.C. Concrete Alley Paving Improvement District No. AN-16-A.
P.C. Concrete Alley Paving Improvement District No. AN-16-B.
P.C. Concrete Alley Paving Improvement District No. AN-16-C.
P.C. Concrete Alley Paving Improvement District No. AN-16-E.
Sanitary Sewer, Water Main, Storm Sewer, Concrete Curb and Gutter, Asphalt Paving, Street Lights Improvement District No. BN-15-K.
Sanitary Sewer, Water Main, Storm Sewer, Concrete Paving, Street Lights Improvement District No. BN-15-N.
Sanitary Sewer, Water Main, Storm Sewer, Grading, Paving, Street Lights Improvement District No. BN-16-E.
Water Main, Storm Sewer, P.C. Concrete Paving, Street Lights Improvement District No. BN-16-F.
Sanitary Sewer, Storm Sewer, Paving, Street Lights Improvement District No. BN-16-L.
Water Main Replacement, Street Reconstruction Improvement District No.
BR-15-A.
P.C. Concrete Pavement, Concrete Curb and Gutter, Asphalt Pavement Improvement District No. PN-14-7.
Concrete Curb and Gutter, Asphalt Pavement, Street Lights Improvement District No. PN-15-E.
P.C. Concrete Pavement, Concrete Curb and Gutter, Asphalt Pavement Improvement District No. PN-15-L.
Concrete Curb and Gutter, Asphalt Pavement, Street Lights Improvement District No. PN-15-M.
Concrete Curb and Gutter, Asphalt Pavement, Street Lights Improvement District No. PN-15-N.
Grading, P.C.C. Pavement, Storm Sewer, Traffic Signals, Street Lights, Sidewalks Improvement District No. PR-14-0.
Traffic Signals Improvement District No. TN-16-B.
Traffic Signals Improvement District No. TN-16-E.
Sanitary Sewer, Water Main, Storm Sewer Improvement District No. UN-15-M.
Sanitary Sewer, Water Main, Storm Sewer Improvement District No. UN-15-N.
Water Main Replacement Improvement District No. UR-16-A.

City Auditor Steve Sprague said the projects being presented have been constructed, finalized and have gone through the assessment process with all of the required notices and inspections done. The total is $43 million in completed project costs, he said, and $35 million in assessments is being proposed affecting just under 3,200 parcels. He said the interest rate which is set at 1% above the bond interest and it varies between projects; however, generally speaking it is at about 4%. The term is 25 years on most projects, he said, and some are required to be only 10 years, set by statute.

Virgil Schultz, 3225 45th Avenue South, spoke regarding Traffic Signals Improvement District No. TN-16-E. He said everyone uses that road and while he does not mind paying some of it, it all adds up. He suggested a transportation fund could be implemented and funded by a tax on gas of a half-cent or penny on a gallon of gas in Fargo, rather than taxing residents, he said.

Commissioner Piepkorn moved that the special assessment list for the construction of the above listed Improvement Districts be and the same are hereby approved and confirmed and ordered filed in the office of the City Auditor, that the City Auditor's Office be instructed to proceed to collect the assessments in the manner provided by law and that the interest rate be set at 1% per annum over the net rate on bonds financing said projects.

Second by Grindberg. On call of the roll Commissioners Piepkorn, Grindberg, Gehrig, Strand and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Hearing on Special Assessment List for Water Main Replacement, Force Main Construction, Street Reconstruction Improvement District No. BR-16-B Continued to October 23, 2017:
A Hearing had been set for this day and hour on the special assessment list for the construction for Water Main Replacement, Force Main Construction, Street Reconstruction Improvement District No. BR-16-B having been approved by the Special Assessment Commission on September 6, 2017; set the interest rate at 1% per annum over the net rate on bonds financing said projects:

In response to a question from Commissioner Piepkorn about the process that has already reduced assessments for Improvement District No. BR-16-B and how some property owners along Broadway are being assessed more than their neighbors, Special Assessments Administrator Dan Eberhardt said when the infrastructure policy was created, the arterial was based on a minimum of a 40’ roadway for a single-family dwelling and Broadway is a 36 foot roadway. At the last Board meeting, he said, it was approved to add a line to the policy that a 40 foot minimum would be used unless the roadway is smaller, which it is in this case, so a 10% reduction was done to the paving portion of the roadway. Specials started out at around $18,000.00 and averaged about a $1,500.00 reduction, he said. Early on, he said, a project constructed in early 2002-2003 was credited back for an average of a $1,700.00 reduction. In total, he said, these homeowners received a $3,200.00-$3,300.00 reduction in specials right off the top. He said every parcel in Fargo is affected by one north south and one east-west arterial based on an arterial map.

The following residents spoke in opposition of Water Main Replacement, Force Main Construction, Street Reconstruction Improvement District No. BR-16-B:
Ivan Sauvageau, 2314 Broadway, said the west side of Broadway is paying about 10 times what the east side is paying. He said he has talked with the Engineering Department since the assessment and now the Board is the only one that can do anything about it. He said he is paying far more than the neighbor across the street with twice the frontage on Broadway. He said he understands the City has a system; however, the system does not work for everyone. He has been paying on specials for 10 years for improvements on the west side of Broadway, he said, and while the remaining on that is being forgiven, now they will be paying on specials another 25 years, which seems excessive.
Kevin Olson, 2218 Broadway, said it seems this project was driven by having bigger pipe for sewage to go down Broadway, and although there was a grant for some of that, it is to benefit the entire city, and includes West Fargo. It is not just to have the residents pay for it, he said.
George Krueger, 2206 Broadway, reminded the Board that Broadway is not a quiet neighborhood street. The traffic is from all over Fargo, he said, and if all of Fargo is using it, it seems unfair to expect homeowners with a 60-foot lot to pay such an exorbitant assessment. He said it seems there needs to be a differentiation of some kind between a quiet neighborhood and a main artery.
Wayne Fehrenbach, 2002 Broadway, said he paid off $4,000.00 in specials 10 years ago and is now being assessed $16,000.00 over the next 25 years at 64 years old. He said this is not fair and the City needs to change how assessments are set up.
Guy Peterson, 2110 Broadway, said at a meeting on this project he was told there was a government grant to lay pipe and that additional assessments would be to repair substructure. He said he did not see any substructure work other than what is necessary to get that pipe in the ground. He said the neighborhood is being assessed an average of $16,000.00 when there is a grant that was was to pay for the pipe and related work.

Commissioner Piepkorn said he would like the project in question to be delayed and suggested a neighborhood meeting be held.

In response to a question from Commissioner Grindberg about the purpose of the pipe, Division Engineer Brenda Derrig said it is a second interceptor sewer pipe to go from the downtown area to the wastewater plant, and those costs associated with the pipe were paid by the grant. She said the second interceptor was needed due to wet weather infiltration into the pipe. During wet weather events it was filtering into the system requiring overflows, she said.

Wastewater Utility Director Jim Hausauer said the interceptor is able to take wet weather flows directly to the wastewater plant. He said there was a lack of capacity before and this doubles it and specifically covers the area that was in danger of sewer backup.

Commissioner Piepkorn moved the Hearing be continued to 5:15 o’clock p.m. October 23, 2017

Second by Grindberg. On call of the roll Commissioners Piepkorn, Grindberg, Gehrig, Strand and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Renaissance Zone Project for DFI BG LLC Approved:
A Hearing had been set for this day and hour to receive comments on a Renaissance Zone Project for DFI BG LLC at 115, 117 and 119 Broadway North.
No written protest or objection to the Project has been received or filed in the City Auditor's Office.
The Board determined that no person is present to protest or offer objection to the Project.

Planner Derrick LaPoint said the project rehabilitates the top two floors of 115, 117 and 119 Broadway. He said many of the apartments there were unlivable. The Renaissance Zone Project application presented by DFI BG LLC meets all of the minimum criteria set forth in the Renaissance Zone Plan, he said, and is consistent with the established goals and objectives. He said the investment for this property is $2.4 million and the recommendation is that the project be approved.

Commissioner Piepkorn moved the Renaissance Zone application filed by DFI BG, LLC for a project located at 115, 117 and 119 Broadway North, be approved and the income tax and property tax exemptions be granted as recommended by the Renaissance Zone Authority.

Second by Grindberg. On call of the roll Commissioners Piepkorn, Grindberg, Strand and Mahoney voted aye.
Commissioner Gehrig voted nay.
The motion was declared carried.

Easement Agreement with DFI Dillard LLC and DFI Kesler LLC: Parking Agreement with DFI Dillard LLC and DFI Kesler LLC Approved with a Review After 25-years:
The Board received a communication from Planning Director Jim Gilmour stating the Kilbourne Group is planning to build a mixed-use building immediately to the north of the Roberts Common Development that would have commercial space on the main floor and five floors of housing above the first floor. He said the Kilbourne Group has requested an easement to connect the apartment’s floors to the parking garage at floors 3 through 7, and has also requested use of the parking in Roberts Garage to meet residential parking needs. Tenants will pay the same rates as other users, and would not be guaranteed a parking space, he said; however, they would be placed on the top of any waiting list for parking. This would be limited to 100 parking spaces for both the Dillard residential tenants and residential tenants of the proposed Kesler development, he stated.

In response to a question from Commissioner Grindberg on the terms of the easement, City Attorney Erik Johnson said while easements are not permanent, they do last 99 years by statute. He said there is language in the proposed agreement that if for some reason the structures were destroyed, the partners would confer about replacement.

Commissioner Piepkorn said he does not have a problem with the connection to the ramp; however, he is concerned with a never-ending agreement committing a large percentage of parking spaces to the Kilbourne Group. He said the ramp was built for customers and employees of multiple places and the long terms of the agreement concern him.

Mr. Gilmour said residents will pay the same rate for those spots as charged for anyone else, the rate set by the City Commission. He said there are 455 parking spots and if half of the 172 renters use the spots, there would be less than 90 spaces used for residential use during the day. If there are capacity problems, the rates could be raised, he said, or ways to build other facilities could be considered. There is not a waiting list right now, he said.

Commissioner Gehrig said the easement connecting the building and the ramp does not concern him, these parking garages do not last 200 years, they last maybe 60 years. He said he does have concerns that too much may be given to the Kilbourne Group. This garage is being built for everybody, he said.

Andy Renfrew, Interstate Parking, said in Fargo as many as 80% of residential users may be gone during the day. He said that allows overselling of stalls in order to maximize revenue for the City and it is the job of Interstate Parking to recognize how far that can be pushed. There are options and flexibility for controlling rates if capacity issues develop, he said, including time restrictions and access levels.

Commissioner Strand said he wants to assure citizens benefit with more access and people visiting downtown do not get shortchanged for parking in this ramp.

Mr. Gilmour said through tools such as license plate recognition, the new software has the ability to manage the facility by knowing how many hourly parkers are there each hour of the day. More parking downtown to support businesses is a goal, he said.

Mike Williams said he is on the Parking Commission and the key was always to get more than 100% occupancy. He said he does have concerns about the term of the agreement. He said the parking ramp arrangement at the Radisson has worked well and is a good model; however, those terms are negotiated about every five years and it would be a good idea to include some of the same language in this agreement.

Commissioner Gehrig said the project has an easement agreement, which he supports, and a parking agreement, which he would like to see have a shorter term.

Commissioner Grindberg said he would agree with the items being separated. He said he would like to see the length of the agreement mirror the financing term, for the same amount of time the City is at risk. Twenty years from now, he said, there will be a whole different body leading the City as well as the Kilbourne Group and he feels it is important for the City to maintain some control and be able to look back.

Mike Allmendinger, Kilbourne Group, said according to the Developer’s Agreement with the City of Fargo, the parking garage is built and owned by the City and the Kilbourne Group is developing the project being built around three sides of the garage, plus another project, Kesler, on the south side. He said the project is a six-story $18 million project that has additional units for housing in the area. He said it has a five-year Renaissance Zone exemption and will create $200,000.00 in property taxes paid each year if it moves forward. He said a question asked by banks for financing is where residents will park, thus the developer needs to provide a parking solution. He said by providing parking priority for residents, the project could move forward with financing. He said this is the last agreement needed to break ground, planned for October 23rd. If not approved, the developer would have to pause and would propose replacing the building requirement in place at Kesler with the Dillard, then wait to see what the parking demand is before deciding what type of project to build at the Kesler site. If there is no access to parking, he said, a surface parking lot might need to be built.

In response to a question from Mayor Mahoney on whether having the agreement revisited in 25 years would affect the financial plan, Mr. Allmendinger said it would not, that is how long they plan to finance the project.

Commissioner Strand said the world is changing with rideshares and different dynamics, so perhaps there will be less demand for cars down the road and that makes it hard to know where things will be in the future.

Commissioner Piepkorn moved the Easement Agreement with DFI Dillard LLC and DFI Kesler LLC be approved with a review of the agreement after 25 years.
Second by Grindberg.

Commissioner Gehrig offered an amendment to the motion to separate the Easement Agreement and the Parking Agreement.
Second by Strand. On call of the roll Commissioners Gehrig, Strand, Grindberg, Piepkorn and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

On call of the roll on the original motion, as amended, Commissioners Piepkorn, Grindberg, Strand, Gehrig and Mahoney voted aye
The motion was declared carried.

Commissioner Grindberg moved the Easement Agreement with DFI Dillard LLC and DFI Kesler LLC be approved.
Second by Piepkorn. On call of the roll Commissioners Grindberg, Piepkorn, Gehrig, Strand and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Commissioner Piepkorn moved the Parking Agreement with DFI Dillard LLC and DFI Kesler LLC with a review of the agreement after 25 years be approved.
Second by Grindberg. On call of the roll Commissioners Piepkorn, Grindberg and Mahoney voted aye.
Commissioners Gehrig and Strand voted nay.
The motion was declared carried.

City Attorney Erik Johnson said the easement and parking agreements are currently contained in a single document and new documents will be drawn up.

At 6:10 p.m. the Board took a five-minute recess.
After recess: All Commissioners present. Mayor Mahoney presiding.

Consulting Services Agreement with Apex Engineering Group for Improvement District No. BR-18-C0 Approved:
The Board received a communication from the Consultant Selection Committee regarding the reconstruction of 13th Avenue South from 45th Street to 12th Street East in West Fargo, a project on the Capital Improvement Plan for 2018. The proposals were evaluated by staff from both Fargo and West Fargo, they said, and based on the criteria outlined within the RFP and following the review of the proposals and interviews, the Committee recommends awarding the contract for consulting services to Apex Engineering Group in the amount of $1,029,065.00.

Division Engineer Jeremy Gorden said in order to get this bid in early March, a consultant is needed. He said half this project will be in Fargo and half in West Fargo and this will be split 50/50.

Commissioner Piepkorn moved the Consulting Services Agreement with Apex Engineering Group for Improvement District No. BR-18-C0 be approved.

Second by Gehrig. On call of the roll Commissioners Piepkorn, Gehrig, Strand, Grindberg and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay the motion was declared carried.

Discussion on Property Tax Reform:
Commissioner Piepkorn stated the Legislature has promised property tax reform for 10 years and it has not happened. He said he would like to call for citizen-led property tax reform and while he would not lead it, there are experts that live in the City and many people can offer solutions to make it better. He said he would encourage citizens to develop and lead a referral statewide to find a better system. There has to be a better system than what there is now, he said, and the public would support a reasonable reform.

Commissioner Grindberg said the devil is in the details. In his 22 years in the Legislature, he said, property taxes were always part of the debate. He said local dollars are assessed through property taxes to take care of people and education. A debate lately since oil revenue in western North Dakota has slacked off is taking care of people and social services and the money has to come from somewhere. He said the reform issue is a challenge between rural and urban and who can pay and who cannot. The Legislature did a tremendous job in buying down property taxes when things were booming, he said; however, given the tightness of the budget things need to adjust. He said in his opinion the residents get a bargain for what is paid in city taxes for services.

Commissioner Strand said not being able to afford to stay in their homes is a reality sometimes for those on a fixed income. He said another concern are sales taxes with the possible declining retail markets, he would encourage citizens to be at the table with their elected leaders on the subject of taxes.

Discussion on Election Reform Proposals:
Commissioner Grindberg passed out information outlining the goals and recommendations of the Election and City Governance Task Force. Public input has been light, he stated, and it is challenging to know what the public thinks the right decisions are. He said action by this Board could be on the ballot in June 2018 and does not affect present laws or anyone running for re-election. If voters decide on a change in 2018, it would go into effect in June 2020. He said he would ask for action in two weeks on his proposal that includes a recommendation for a change involving a primary to general election process and whether to add two more Commissioners to the City Commission.

City Attorney Erik Johnson said the proposals contemplate Home Rule Charter amendments requiring a citywide vote; the expansion of City Commissioners and the election process. The Board would adopt a Resolution that contains the actual wording change, he said, then a ballot would be put together for June 2018 with the idea changes would go into effect in June 2020. As far as the election process, he said, it could be a primary election followed by a general election. He said the simplest way may be to adopt the same primary and general election as there is statewide. If approved by the voters, he said, it would come back to the Board to adopt the necessary details by Ordinance.

Commissioner Grindberg said the packet includes a copy of Senate Bill 2344 from 1987 about approval voting that was tried 30 years ago. He said it never saw the light of day with the full Legislature and in his judgement, approval voting is too risky. He said whatever is done, it must be done simply and with clarity. His intention, he said, was to bring this up and have two weeks to allow for thoughts and media attention for the public to weigh in and then have a decision made. It is important to move on this and for the public to know it is coming if there is a decision to act on.

Commissioner Gehrig said a run-off election in Fargo has never resulted in a 51% majority. If four people run for two spots, he said, the likelihood of any one getting 51% is nearly impossible. He said he understands the sentiment of wanting to be elected by a majority. He has received little public input on the topic, he said, although he has been contacted from a small special interest group from Berkeley trying to meddle in how Fargo should run its elections.

Commissioner Strand said he assumes the recommendations from the citizen’s task force will be weighed as far as going to seven Commissioners and approval voting. He said he would suggest not aligning too tightly to a timeframe as that would diminish public engagement.

Statement from Commissioner Gehrig about the FM Diversion Injunction:
Commissioner Gehrig said all the members of the Board are involved in some capacity with the Diversion Authority; he is on the Finance Committee. He said as he reads the injunction, a full stop is ordered on flood protection for the City of Fargo unless a letter from the judge says a specific project can be completed. Certain projects are continuing in Oxbow and in town, he said, and some of these projects do need to continue. His intention is not to stop these projects, he said, he wants it done the right way to not be held in contempt, so projects do not get stopped for a longer term. He would like the City to do as the judge asked, he said, and officially ask him to find out from the Minnesota DNR what projects can and cannot be done and get it in writing for clear guidance. He said lawyers have been asked for an opinion on what projects can continue, he said; however, in his perspective that has been wrong in the past and that is why there is an injunction. He stated as an FM Diversion Finance Committee member, he will be voting “no” on releasing any funds for any projects without a letter from the judge, who wrote the injunction, stating the MN DNR approves. There are abundant projects that can be continued, he said; however, a letter must state that it is allowed for them to move forward. His “no” vote on certain projects does not mean he is anti-Diversion, he said, it is because the procedure must follow the way the injunction reads, then look at alternatives to meet the DNR to move the project forward.

City Attorney Erik Johnson said the preliminary injunction was issued last month. He said there was another stipulation that resulted in another order this past spring that pertains specifically to Oxbow. He said Dorsey, the litigators on the matter, have conferred with the DNR and JPA in terms of how that is interpreted. He said there is uniform agreement with everything, except perhaps with the exception of some elements at Oxbow. He said the agreement entered into this past spring about Oxbow authorized construction through 2017.

Sole Source Procurement with Family HealthCare for Medical Interpreting Approved (moved from the Consent Agenda):
Commissioner Piepkorn said he requested this item be moved from the Consent Agenda for discussion because he found it confusing.

Director of Public Health Ruth Roman said because the Health Department receives funding through Medicaid and federal grants, it is required to provide interpreters for medical services. She said three entities were looked at, Family Healthcare Center, LSS and Cultural Diversity Resources. Interpreter services are not reimbursed, she said, and while much of it is for New Americans, a variety of people use the services. She said when interpreters were first used, family members were relied on for interpreting services; however, it was soon learned that was not good practice at all. She said trained medical interpreters are now used who are certified on an annual basis

Commissioner Piepkorn said it is not fair to the City that is not reimbursed; 80% of the refugees in North Dakota come to the Fargo area and the taxpayers pay the brunt of it. He said he raises the question because it is about how taxpayer money is being spent.

Commissioner Piepkorn moved the Sole Source Procurement with Family HealthCare for annual medical interpreting services in the amount of $36,000.00 be approved.

Second by Gehrig. On call of the roll Commissioners Piepkorn, Gehrig, Strand, Grindberg and Mahoney voted aye.
No Commissioner being absent and none voting nay, the motion was declared carried.

Commissioner Piepkorn moved that the Board adjourn to 5:00 o’clock p.m., Monday, October 23, 2017.

Second by Gehrig. All the Commissioners voted aye and the motion was declared carried.
The time at adjournment was 6:52 o’clock p.m.