October 28, 2019 - Minutes
City of Buchanan Commission Minutes
October 28, 2019
The Public Hearing was called to order at 7:03 p.m. to hear public comments on the proposed Ordinance 2019.06/413 Adult Use Marihuana.
Public Comments Regarding Ordinance:
• Alan Robandt – Expressed concern about having retail sales in Industrial Park. Should be limited to C2 and C3 business districts.
• Alex Lenowicz – Had questions regarding language in Section 3 regarding the requirement of having both a medical and adult use permits at each facility. Disagreed that adult use sales should be limited to C2 and C3 business districts.
• Dan Vigansky – Expressed opinion regarding postings of dates and times of meetings. Expressed opinion regarding sales in Industrial Park.
• Randall Peart – Had question regarding taxes if retail sales were allowed in Industrial Park.
• Tom Jollay – Expressed opinion that retail sales only be allowed C2 and C3 business districts.
• Rick Paniagua – Expressed opinion that retail sales only be allowed in C2 and C3 business districts.
• Kelly Dickerson – Expressed opinion that retail sales only be allowed in C2 and C3 business districts.
Hearing no further comments or receipt of any additional written comments, Toerne Moved, seconded by Denison to adjourn the public hearing. Voice vote carried unanimously. The Mayor adjourned the public hearing at 7:13 p.m.
The regularly scheduled meeting of the City Commission was held at City Hall, 302 N Redbud Trail, Buchanan, Michigan Monday, October 28, 2019 and was called to order at 7:13 p.m. by Mayor Moore. The Mayor led the Pledge of Allegiance. There was no invocation.
Present: Mayor Moore, Commissioners Denison, Downey, Toerne and Weedon
Guests: Approximately 26 guests and visitors
City Staff in attendance: Bill Marx, City Manager; Debra Patzer, City Zoning Administrator; Bill Housand, Wastewater Treatment Plant Operator; Brenda Hess, City Clerk
• Dan Vigansky – Expressed disappointment on not being elected to DDA. Commented upon City Manager contract for present and future managers. Thanked Clerk for DDA rejection letter. Welcomed new DDA members.
• Alex Lenowicz – Reiterated earlier statement regarding permitting requirements.
• Approve Agenda
• Approve Minutes: Regular Meeting October 14, 2019
• Approve Minutes: Work Session Meeting with Planning Commission – Adult Use Marijuana October 21, 2019
• Approve Minutes: Work Session Meeting – Capital Improvement Projects Update October 21, 2019
• Approve Invoices/Expenditures for October 28, 2019 in the amount of $91,372.68
• Approve Banner Placement: Wesner Automotive Annual Toy Drive December 1-15, 2019
• Approve Street Closure Request for Front Street on November 30, 2019 from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. for the Chamber of Commerce Holiday Parade
• Approve the appointment of Hillary Hageman and Daniel Carlson to the Downtown Development Authority to complete terms ending in 2023 as recommended by a majority vote of the DDA on Thursday, October 17, 2019
• Approve the appointment of Ralph McDonald to the Downtown Development Authority to complete a term ending in 2021 as recommended by a majority vote of the DDA on Thursday, October 17, 2019
• Approve the reappointment Heidi Ott to a second four-year term to the Downtown Development Authority ending in 2023 as recommended by a majority vote of the DDA on Thursday, October 17, 2019
• Approve the formation of The Buchanan Friends of the Ducks Committee as a subcommittee of the Buchanan Area Recreation Board (BARB) as recommended by the BARB at their meeting on October 16, 2019 – Resolution 2019.10/196
• Approve changing the date of the Monday, November 11, 2019 City Commission meeting to Tuesday, November 12, 2019 due to the Veteran’s Day holiday
• Approve cancelation of the Monday, December 23, 2019 City Commission meeting.
Denison moved, seconded by Toerne to add Item “N” onto the Consent Calendar “to approve the appointment of Adam Burke to the DDA Ad-Hoc Committee”. Roll call vote carried unanimously. Downey moved, seconded by Denison to add Item “D” to Unfinished Business “to approve the limited release of Attorney information on the DDA”. Roll call vote carried unanimously. Denison moved, seconded by Weedon to approve the amended Consent Calendar. Roll call vote carried unanimously.
Reports by: Departments, Committees, Boards
Consider adoption of Ordinance 2019.10/413 an Ordinance to Amend the City of Buchanan, Michigan Code of Ordinances Chapter 18, Businesses by Adding Article IV, Adult Use Marihuana Establishments – An Ordinance to Authorize and Regulate Adult Use Marihuana Establishments Pursuant to the Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marihuana Act Being Initiated Law 1 of 2018 - Patzer noted this is the Police Power Ordinance. The Zoning Amendment provides for actual locations to be discussed at the next Planning Commission meeting on November 19. Provided second reading summary. Noted fee schedule added. Noted Ordinance can be amended. Moore noted newness of industry and changes to the Ordinance will be needed as industry grows. Patzer noted Ordinance needs to be completed by November 1 or the State will be able to dictate who conducts marijuana business in Buchanan. Weedon requested Commission input regarding Lenowicz’s question about Ordinance requiring a medical permit for each adult use facility. Toerne noted we could pass the Ordinance and make changes through the amendment process, but the Ordinance needs approval. Weedon moved, seconded by Toerne to add language to Section 3 C, on page 4 of the (Adult Use Marihuana) Ordinance to exempt growers and processors from the requirement that Marihuana Establishments must be on the same property and in the same building as their Medical Marihuana Facility(s). Patzer noted this language change would amend Section Three of the Adult Use Marihuana Ordinance Part C and would clarify language for growers and processors. Being no further comments or questions, Roll call vote carried unanimously. Denison commented language change was needed as the original intent of the requirement was to prevent retail establishments from taking over every available space. Reminded all that the City is learning and that changes can be made. Moore noted that changes can happen in the Zoning Ordinance approval process. Denison noted Buchanan is open for business and although no one really knows what is going to happen we welcome all new business. Weedon moved, seconded by Toerne to approve Ordinance 2019.10/413 an Ordinance to Amend the City of Buchanan, Michigan Code of Ordinances Chapter 18, Businesses by Adding Article IV, Adult Use Marihuana Establishments. Roll call vote carried unanimously.
Consider Adoption of Resolution 2019.10/197 - Setting the Municipal Permit Fees for Adult Use Marihuana Establishments, Event Organizer and Temporary Marihuana Event – Patzer noted that the fees are allowed under MRTMA (Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marihuana Act). Reviewed all fees and noted fees will cover City costs. Weedon requested clarity regarding the Special Marijuana Event cost. Patzer noted State set and Weedon noted State fees are large. Patzer noted City cannot charge more than the State. Toerne suggested City wait to see what market dictates. Downey inquired regrading Special Marijuana Event fees and if they applied to all vendors taking part in the event such as food vendors or is the $500 fee per vendor specifically for marijuana vendors. Patzer noted MRTMA is not clear on that point. Moore noted City needs to justify charges and City is doing heavy lifting while State benefits monetarily. Weedon moved, seconded by Denison to approve Resolution 2019.10/197 - Setting the Municipal Permit Fees for Adult Use Marihuana Establishments, Event Organizer and Temporary Marihuana Event. Roll call vote carried unanimously.
Approval of labor contract with City Manager William Marx - Moore thanked Weedon and Denison for help with writing and negotiating contract. Marx highlighted six major changes since his hiring in November 14, 2011:
• Contract is eighteen months in duration and goes from November 1, 2019 through May 31, 2021. Includes exit plan.
• Marx will resign as Chief of Police as soon as replacement chief is found. Process for hiring new chief will begin with internal search.
• Salary $86, 186.21 which includes a 4% raise.
• During second year of contract Marx will receive a 4% raise
• Marx will purchase cellular phone for $1.00 at conclusion of contract and be able to retain phone number that came with him to City.
• City Commission will create an evaluation process prior to July 1, 2019.
Toerne thanked Weedon and Denison for their work on the contract. Denison noted a replacement would be found while Marx is still employed, and search will begin soon. Commission desires new Chief to be trained before Marx’s departure. Noted importance of exit plan to prepare next manager. Marx noted contract can be obtained through a FOIA request through the Clerk. Weedon noted it important to recognize the longevity of Manager Marx. Cautioned people from “nitpicking” contract. Downey noted he would be voting no due in part to the lateness of obtaining contract. Expressed opinion contract needed specific dates and felt there was lack of clarity in some of the language. Noted in future all Commissioner’s should sign document. Weedon moved, seconded by Denison to labor contract with City Manager William Marx. Yeas: Weedon, Denison, Moore and Toerne Nays: Downey. Motion carried by majority.
Release of Attorney’s Opinion Regarding the DDA – Downey noted Buchanan’s City Attorney’s letter should be released to Ad-Hoc Committee. Moore noted she supported release of letter provided it only go to the Ad-Hoc Committee and it remains confidential. Denison expressed support for release of the City’s Attorney’s letter to the Ad-Hoc Committee, and additionally expressed desire to see the original letter from the DDA’s Attorney. Moore noted that the DDA Chair has not released original letter from DDA’s Attorney. Denison reiterated that City’s Attorney’s letter would be released as soon as the DDA’s original letter was released. Weedon moved, seconded by Moore to approve limited release of the City Attorney's letter regarding the DDA with the stipulation that the original letter received by the DDA Chair is also released to the two individuals on the Ad-Hoc Committee and released to [Weedon and Denison] as well who sit on the Ad-Hoc Committee. Toerne inquired if it was necessary to contact the City Attorney prior to approve. Moore noted that a limited and confidential release is approved. Roll call vote carried unanimously.
Consider approval of the installation of the Return Activated Sludge Pump previously approved for purchase at the May 28, 2019 meeting, to be installed by Hickok Plumbing in the amount of $5,000 – Housand asked for approval of installation of the previously approved pump. Denison moved, seconded by Weedon to approve the installation of the Return Activated Sludge Pump previously approved for purchase at the May 28, 2019 meeting, to be installed by Hickok Plumbing in the amount of $5,000. Roll call vote carried unanimously.
• Randall Peart – Encouraged Commission to follow Charter and have the next Manager live within Buchanan. Suggested Friends of the Ducks group consider harvesting ducks for food for local clients of RAM. Noted fish beds are downstream from the ducks and their waste can impact the fish.
• Jason Paturalski - Expressed interest in purchasing old Feed Mill at 111 Railroad. Mayor Moore encourage him to reach out to Marx to meet. Downey inquired where people go now for Feed Mill products and supplies and it was noted most people go to Rural King.
• Donna Monell – Thanked Marx for attending ribbon cutting at Cameron’s Restaurant. Commented upon the contract approval for Marx and encouraged the use of “selection committees” for both Police Chief and Manager searches.
• Dan Vigansky – Inquired about blinking stop light at Oak and Front. Commented upon fixing of streetlights.
• Norma Ferris – Inquired about removal of poison ivy at Ross-Sanders House.
City Manager Comments
Marx noted Saturday’s City Halloween events saw low attendance due to rainy and cold weather. Leaf pickup has started; routes posted on Facebook and City website. Catch basins are full of leaves and rain caused minor street flooding. Reminded everyone of Trick-Or-Treat times of 6:00 until 7:30 on the 31st. EMS will be at the Redbud City Center and candy checks will be there too. Thanked community for support of McCoy’s Trail Trek-Or-Treat and noted leftover candy will be given out by the Fire Department on Halloween night.
Denison- Expressed regret for missing Cameron’s Grand Opening. Thanked Scarecrow Ladies. Noted Adam Burke was appointed to DDA Ad-Hoc Committee and reviewed his qualifications. Noted that marijuana retail sales are not all going to be located in the Industrial Park and that adult use licenses will go to existing medical permit holders. Agreed with Peart regarding ducks.
Downey – Informed Ferris that there is regular ivy on the Ross-Sanders Building and it is not poison ivy.
Toerne – No comments.
Weedon – Noted conversations will continue regarding marijuana and expressed support for downtown area.
Moore – Noted City Charter is outdated and there was a court challenge to the residence requirement on employees meaning the City cannot require employees to live within City limits. Reminded everyone ducks are pets and are not for consumption and noted some ducks are even named. Reminded everyone to go see The Bad Seed at the Tin Shop Theater. Commented there is still a great deal of work to do regarding marijuana business establishment.
Under MCL15.268(d) closed session; permissible purposes section 8. To consider material exempt from discussion or disclosure by state statute - To Approve Minutes from Closed Session of October 14, 2019. At 8:24 p.m. Weedon moved, seconded by Denison to move into closed session pursuant MCL15.268, (h) to consider material exempt from disclosure. To Approve Minutes from Closed Session of October 14, 2019. Roll call vote carried unanimously.
The Mayor reconvened the meeting 8:26 p.m.
At 8:27 p.m. Weedon moved, seconded by Toerne to adjourn the meeting. Voice vote carried unanimously. Mayor Moore adjourned the meeting at 8:27 p.m.
Mayor Patricia A. Moore DPM Brenda J. Hess, City Clerk