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October 23 2017 Minutes

CITY OF BUCHANAN COMMISSION MINUTES
October 23, 2017
        
The Mayor reconvened the Public Hearing at 7:00 p.m. and invited public comments on an ordinance amending the City of Buchanan Zoning Ordinance; Article III-definitions and use of terms; Article X – C-2 Commercial District; Article XI C-3 Central Business District; Article XII I-1light Industrial District; Article XIII I-2 Heavy Industrial District; Article XVIII Special Provisions: Article XXIII Nonconforming uses, buildings and lots; Article XVII general provisions
Downtown Business Owner Sandy Huyvaert, 105 Days Avenue presented a petition opposing allowing medical marihuana in the C-3 Central Business District and the City Manager presented copies to the City Commission.
Downtown Business Owner and resident Penny Slocum-Correa, Main Street opposed the medical marihuana in the Historic District and believes it does not fit downtown nor with the Buchanan Promise.
William Haas, Stateline Road in Niles has a proposed marihuana business in the industrial district and believes Buchanan is a great town and assured everyone not one business has been approved yet either by the City or the State.  He supports the ordinance.
Cindy Benson, Cecil St. resident has a copy of the proposed changes and states the Planning Commission did not approve the medical marihuana in the downtown and she opposes the strikethrough to Article 18.10 B. and inclusion of allowing it in C-3 Central Business District. She does not want it anywhere that children are.
Corbin Detgen, Hillview Ave. resident attempted to help someone moving into the City and believes housing is a priority in Buchanan because of the Buchanan Promise. He is opposed to a downtown dispensary and requests the Commission to think about the moral value in the community.
Downtown Business Owner Dean Ulrich, 203 E Front St. stated he has been downtown for seven years and believes children will not get a hold of marihuana and states the building in question is falling down and is in dire need of repair. He supports the ordinance.
Thomas Wilson, Charles Court resident has been told different things at several meetings and he believed they were against it; he opposes medical marihuana being downtown.
Jason Lietz, Clark Street resident and Plan Commission member recalls meetings with the Planning Commission and urged Commission to listen to citizens, businesses and colleagues; states it is still illegal on the federal level.  He asked that Commission think about suitability of location and listen to the Plan Commission recommendations.  With no written comments, the public hearing ended at 7:20 p.m.

The regularly scheduled meeting of the City Commission was held at City Hall, 302 N Redbud Trail, Buchanan, Michigan Monday, October 23, 2017 and was called to order at 7:21 p.m. by Mayor Hess directly following the public hearing.
The Mayor led the Pledge of Allegiance. Pastor Edwin Brinklow gave the Invocation. 

Commissioners present:  Carla Cole, Brenda Hess, Patricia Moore, Daniel Vigansky                                        
Commissioners absent:    Dale Toerne
Staff present:                    City Manager Bill Marx, Zoning Administrator Debra Patzer and Clerk Gladys Bybee                               
Guests/Visitors present:   Meals on Wheels Director Linda Strohl along with 40+ visitors

Cole moved, seconded by Moore to approve the Consent Calendar as presented. Roll call vote carried unanimously. 
•    Agenda
•    Minutes: Regular scheduled meeting, October 9, 2017
•    Checks 75708 to 75783 in the amount of $105,520.31
•    Delinquent Township Billings totaling $1,374.76 and Certify to Winter 2017 Tax Roll
•    Letter of Agreement between the City of Buchanan and Buchanan Community School reference the rate of pay for Crossing Guards
•    Appoint Vanessa Crescio to the Downtown Development Authority to fulfill an expired term through 2018
•    Appoint Sandra Huyvaert to the Downtown Development Authority to fulfill an expired term through 2021

Meals on Wheels of Southwest Michigan Director Linda Strohl announced that in 2017 meal delivery is up 17 percent. She explained homebound meals provided and announced statistics on homebound clients. She urged any and all to come out and volunteer and left her contact information.

Chris Kutemeier from Buchanan Youth Softball Baseball Association could not stay for the report so the City Manager confirmed he would be invited to the next meeting.   

The Mayor announced that because of receipt of petition, the attorney advised that the Ordinance 2017.10/____, Amending the City of Buchanan Zoning Ordinance; Article III-definitions and use of terms; Article X – C-2 Commercial District; Article XI C-3 Central Business District; Article XII I-1light Industrial District; Article XIII I-2 Heavy Industrial District; Article XVIII Special Provisions: Article XXIII Nonconforming uses, buildings and lots; Article XVII General Provisions be continued to next meeting.

Marx explained the policy for displaying athletic banners downtown with Commissioner Cole supporting. Moore moved, seconded by Cole to approve Policy G2017.10.28, Displaying Sports Banners on City Light poles.  Roll call vote carried by majority.  YEA: Cole, Hess, Moore, Toerne. NAY: Vigansky

Commissioner Patricia Moore, representing the Dog Park Committee stated that there was concerns of the location on Victory Street and suggested that the Buchanan’s Field of Dreams Dog Park be placed in the abandoned Renhack field in McCoy Creek Recreation Area.  She confirmed it passed unanimously by the Buchanan Area Recreation Board.  Vigansky asked if the Dog Park Committee would return the funds that the city used to buy the property that was taken off the tax roll, neighbors did not want it to begin with, and he opposed the original expenditure to purchase the property.   Cole moved, seconded by Moore to go with the dog park at Renhack Field.  Voice vote carried by majority.  YEA: Cole, Hess, Moore, Toerne.  NAY: Vigansky. 

Penny Slocum commented the reason the buildings downtown are falling apart is because the owners are not accountable for repair and believes the City should make them take care of them.

Norma Ferris, Oak Street is concerned about the Wastewater Treatment Plant and when are we going to have a new one.  The Manager replied second part of 2023 the oxidation ditch will be completed.  He explained the process in detail with the concept being displayed in the front office. 
Larry Money, American Legion Post 51 announced the Veterans Day Program on November 9 and 11 and explained. Locations were announced.
Josh from Blue Diamond Ventures in Lakeshore believes Buchanan is selected for medical marihuana facilities because the commission/community’s willingness to subject themselves to the controversy and bring technology for something positive.

The City Manager thanked Ms. Strohl and Pastor McPherson for Make a Difference Day.  He explained that 11 letters were sent to property owners downtown and a couple have been working with the City to improve their properties; one through the DDA Building improvement Program. Marx explained the leaf pick-up program to begin and brush is an issue as the ordinance is outdated.  Commissioner Vigansky asked about the contract for the Media Director and the Manager announced public services announcements would begin this week. 

Commissioner’s comments included thanks to Meals on Wheels and Make a Difference Day; caution for children during Halloween events; Tin Shop Theatre play starts this weekend; Buchanan is missing our Berrien County Record although Mary Lister is starting a new paper and announced the open house for “the paper”.  Commissioner Vigansky was displeased with outsiders complaining about the City, tax dollars spent on Dog Park, no prices for medical marihuana permits and his support for medical marihuana.  The Mayor announced over 100 volunteers for Make a Difference Day; Channel 17 getting a make-over in which she will be hosting; she formed a committee and needs volunteers; and personally thanked those in attendance.

Cole moved, seconded by Moore to adjourn the meeting at 8:16 p.m. Voice vote carried unanimously.

________________________________        _____________________________________
Gladys M. Bybee, City Clerk                                Brenda J Hess, Mayor


 

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