Mayor and Council Meeting, 5/3/2004
CITY OF GAITHERSBURG
MINUTES OF A REGULAR CITY COUNCIL MEETING
MAY 3, 2004
A meeting of the Mayor and City Council was called to order at 7:30 p.m., Mayor Katz presiding. Council Members present: Alster (arrived 7:35 p.m.), Marraffa, Schlichting and Somerset. Absent: Council Member Edens. Staff present: City Manager Humpton, Assistant City Managers Felton and Tomasello, Police Chief Viverette, Finance and Administration Director Belton, Director of Public Works and Engineering Arnoult, Planning and Code Administration Acting Director Ossont, Human Services Director Morganstein, Planner Janousek, Planner Patula, Associate Planner Marsh, City Attorney Borten and Administrative Assistant Stokes.
I. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
The Pledge of Allegiance was led by Sharon Bohrer Mears, former City Council Member.
Chaplain Edco Baily, Director of Pastoral Services, Shady Grove Adventist Hospital, Gaithersburg, Maryland
III. APPROVAL OF MINUTES
Motion was made by Council Member Schlichting, seconded by Council Member Marraffa, that the minutes of the Mayor and Council meeting held March 15, 2004, be approved.
IV. CONSENT ITEMS
- Resolution of the Mayor and City Council Authorizing the City Manager to Purchase a Facade Easement from Elizabeth Jacobs, owner of the Medical Arts Building at 26 North Summit Avenue
This resolution authorized the City Manager to purchase the above façade easement from Elizabeth Jacobs, One Central Avenue, Gaithersburg, Maryland 20877, in the amount of Thirty Thousand Dollars ($30,000); said funds to be expended from the Capital Improvements Budget.
- Resolution of the Mayor and City Council Authorizing the City Manager to Enter into a Contract for the Installation of Raised Crosswalks on Brookes, Walker, Maryland and Montgomery Avenues in and Around the Historic District
This resolution authorized the City Manager to enter into a contract for the above with Daniel R. Moxley, Inc, 1557-A Tilco Drive, Frederick, Maryland 21704, in the amount of Twenty-Five Thousand Two Hundred Eighty-Seven Dollars ($25,287); said funds to be expended from the Capital Improvements Budget.
- Resolution of the Mayor and City Council Authorizing the City Manager to Award a Contract to Purchase an Upgraded Microphone System for the Council Chambers and Renovate the Dais
This resolution authorized the City Manager to award a contract for the above to Professional Products, Inc., 9116 Gaither Road, Gaithersburg, Maryland 20877, in an amount not to exceed Thirty-Eight Thousand Nine Hundred Thirty Dollars ($38,930); said funds to be expended from the Capital Improvements Budget.
Motion was made by Council Member Somerset, seconded by Council Member Marraffa, that the Consent Agenda (Resolution Nos. R-29 through 31-04) be approved.
Resolution Confirming Reappointments by the Mayor
This resolution confirmed the following: Beautification Committee, Karen Johnston and David Johnston, 5 James Street, Gaithersburg, Maryland 20877, two-year terms; and the Police Chief's Advisory Committee, Gary Crawford, 320 East Diamond Avenue, Gaithersburg, Maryland 20877, two-year term.
Motion was made by Council Member Somerset, seconded by Council Member Schlichting, that a RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL CONFIRMING REAPPOINTMENTS BY THE MAYOR TO THE BEAUTIFICATION COMMITTEE AND THE POLICE CHIEF'S ADVISORY COUNCIL (Resolution No. R-32-04) be approved.
- Certificates of Recognition Presented to the 2004 W. Edward Bohrer Memorial CHARACTER COUNTS! Scholarship Winners and Corporate Partners
For the City's Seventh Annual W. Edward Bohrer Memorial CHARACTER COUNTS! Scholarship Awards, there were applicants from three area high schools. The scholarship's intention is to recognize Gaithersburg area high school students of outstanding character who also have a firm commitment to their educations. The awards totaled $9,000. The four sponsors that contributed a total of $7,000 to the scholarship fund were: Lockheed Martin, Rodgers Consulting, Inc. - Gary Unterberg, DRS Signal Solutions, and the W. Edward Bohrer, Jr. Memorial CHARACTER COUNTS! Scholarship Fund (Sharon Bohrer Mears, Vicki Connor, Patsy Greene, and Juanita Bohrer). Mayor Katz along with Ms. Bohrer Mears presented certificates and checks to the following scholarship winners from Gaithersburg High School: Johan Orjuela, Oscar Ramirez, and Kevin Wilkerson.
Mayor Katz issued a Proclamation to Planner Janousek, designating May 7, 2004, as "Bike to Work Day" in the City of Gaithersburg. Residents are encouraged to pedal to work as part of Bike to Work Day, set for Friday, May 7, 2004. Bike to Work Day is coordinated by the Washington Area Bicycle Association (WABA) and the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments through the Commuter Connections Program. The City of Gaithersburg will host one of 18 "Pit Stops" in the Washington, D.C. area from 6:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. at the Activity Center at Bohrer Park, Summit Hall Farm, 506 South Frederick Avenue. Pit Stop activities will include a demonstration on how to load bicycles onto Montgomery County Ride-On buses, giveaways and drawings for bike gear provided by Gaithersburg Bicycle Sales and Performance Bicycles in Gaithersburg. Free bicycle maintenance will be provided by Performance Bicycles. Anyone can register for the event at www.waba.org.
- Recognition of "National Preservation Week"
- Proclamation of the Mayor and City Council designating May 3 - 9, 2004, as "National Preservation Week" in the City of Gaithersburg
Mayor Katz presented the above Proclamation to Richard Arkin, Chair, Historic Preservation Advisory Committee. The theme chosen by the National Trust for Historical Preservation for this year is "New Frontiers in Preservation."
- Presentation of Official Preservation Week 2004 Poster
Mr. Arkin presented an Official Preservation Week 2004 poster to the City Council to be displayed at City Hall and announced the upcoming preservation related events. He mentioned that all committee members along with Planner Patula and Associate Planner Marsh attended the Maryland State Preservation Conference.
- Presentation of Preservation Awards
Planner Patula received a Certificate of Recognition on behalf of Mark and Karyn Ryan for outstanding restoration of 17 Walker Avenue. Mayor Katz also presented Certificates to several individuals and staff who worked on the Kent Barn, a historic resource in the Kentlands. The project was a joint venture for the Gaithersburg Arts Barn.
VII. PUBLIC APPEARANCES
- Richard Arkin, 121 Selby Street, stated the Arts Barn is a wonderful resource for the City. He mentioned that the scheduled activities at the Barn have been sold out. He complimented the Planning and Code Administration staff on the tour conducted for the American Planning Association Conference. He expressed appreciation to Community Planning Director Schwarz and Long Range Planning Director Depoe for their efforts and Council Member Schlichting for speaking and participating on the panel.
- Noel (inaudible), 202 Park Avenue, expressed concerns with parking in his neighborhood on the weekends, stating that it is an annoyance and public safety issue. He asked for more police enforcement to ensure that residents are parking legally.
VIII. FROM THE MAYOR AND CITY COUNCIL/ANNOUNCEMENTS
Council Member Schlichting
- Echoed Mr. Arkin above and thanked staff for their efforts during the American Planning Association Conference which 50 Planners participated. He stated that the tour showcased the Lakelands and Kentlands.
- Announced the vacancies on the various Board/Commission/Committees.
Council Member Somerset
Reported that she attended the Council of Governments Transportation Planning Board meeting which the ICC study was discussed and voted on. She stated that the majority of those in attendance felt that the Quality Air Impact should be evaluated. Also discussed was an Evacuation Planning Study for the region. She stated that it is a work in progress.
Council Member Alster
Thanked Council Vice President Somerset for attending the transportation meeting mentioned above.
- Stated the City will conduct a Budget Work Session on May 10, 2004, 7 p.m., at the Activity Center at Bohrer Park, Summit Hall Farm.
- Announced the City will conduct Board of Appeals interviews on May 4, 2004, 7 p.m. at City Hall.
- Reported a stakeholders meeting was held for the former National Geographic Site (GE) with about 125 people in attendance. Staff recommendation will be given to the Mayor and Council at the scheduled June 14, 2004 work session.
IX. PUBLIC HEARINGS
- An Ordinance to Adopt the City Budget for the Fiscal Year July 1, 2004, through June 30, 2005, and Levying an Ad Valorem Tax on all Assessable Property Within the City of Gaithersburg, Maryland
City Manager Humpton stated that the budget public hearing was advertised in the April 14, 2004 Gaithersburg Gazette, and that the process is an ongoing effort guided by the eleven strategic directions approved by the Mayor and City Council and input from the citizens at the annual Budget Forum. He recommended no tax rate increase to fund the budget. Under the proposed budget, a real property tax rate of 21.2 cents per 100 dollars of assessed value is proposed. Additionally, the ad valorem tax on tangible personal property shall remain at the rate of .53 cents per 100 dollars of assessed value.
He stated that in comparison to the FY 2004 Budget, the total proposed budget of roughly 34.6 million dollars is up approximately 2.9 million dollars from last year's adopted budget. The proposed Operating Budget of 29.4 million dollars is up approximately 5.5 percent, while the proposed Capital Budget of 5.2 million dollars is up approximately 35 percent from last year.
Staff proposed to re-appropriate excess revenue and unexpended appropriations from the current fiscal year. Staff recommended a re-appropriation of approximately 2.6 million dollars. This is approximately 350,000 dollars less in re-appropriations as compared to the current year and over 1 million dollars less than two years ago. Several positive factors combined in FY 2003 to increase the City's undesignated fund balance (from year-end FY 2002) by over 4.8 million dollars to a balance of over 16 million dollars. The largest of these factors was reimbursement by the State of Maryland of 3.5 million dollars, relating to the utility undergrounding project in Olde Towne. The City also experienced higher than expected revenues in several categories and all City operating departments finished the year below their respective budgets. Use of the undesignated fund balance is actually projected to be less in FY 2005 as compared to this year. The availability of these funds was an important aspect of the decision to increase the budget at this time.
Staff is projecting an 11.3 percent increase in total City revenues for FY 2005. Real property taxes are projected to increase by 1.2 million dollars. He stated that staff is expecting revenue gains in corporate personal property taxes, rental housing license fees, and income taxes. Notable revenue categories projected to decrease in FY 2005 include interest earnings, summer camp program registration fees, and several building-related fees including building, electrical, occupancy, fire, and mechanical permits.
Mr. Humpton reviewed the changes to the Proposed Operating Budget stating that it funds all City activities other than the Capital Improvements Plan. The largest expense category for the City is personnel and numerous requests for new staff were submitted by the various City departments. Only those personnel requests relating to the highest priority activities, with an emphasis on public safety were approved. The City will spend just over 67 percent of the FY 2005 Operating Budget on personnel services. The budget proposes to add six additional positions this year, including four police officers. The expense of the police positions will be partially offset over several years by a Universal Hiring Program grant through the "COPS" office of the federal Department of Justice. The new officers will allow the City to form a second street crimes unit to build on the success of the current unit's proactive enforcement strategies. Also proposed is to hire an Equipment Operator in the Department of Public Works and a Recreation Assistant position that is needed with the opening of the new Youth Center at Robertson Park in FY 2005.
He added that several positions operating under employment agreements will be upgraded to full time status. These include an Administrative Liaison in the City Manager's Office, a Secretary in the Human Services Division, an Information Systems Technician, and a Work Force Supervisor in the Department of Public Works.
He stated that in departmental initiatives, staff is proposing an overall 5.5 percent increase to the Operating Budget. In FY 2005, the Office of Environmental Affairs will have its own budget. This activity has taken on increased importance in recent years and staff has several major projects underway, including activities to meet the requirements of the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES), and the City's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) and Green Building initiatives.
The Public Works, Parks Maintenance and Engineering Department budgets have increased to address the need to maintain the new Lakelands Park facility, coordinate the many capital construction projects currently underway, and to reduce overtime expenditures related to snow removal.
The Parks, Recreation and Culture budget reflects operational and organizational changes made in preparation for the opening of both Lakelands Park and the Youth Center at Robertson Park.
Planning and Code Administration staff will continue to work on the Master Plan Elements and the remaining Special Study Areas. Significant staff time will also be allocated for plan review and inspections associated with previously approved development plans.
The Information Technology Department has numerous projects scheduled for FY 2005 in support of projects in various City Departments. These include crime analysis software and hardware, email spam control, permitting and plan review access improvements.
City Manager Humpton stated that the City continues to build and enhance community partnerships to provide specialized services and programs for our citizens in need. Staff is proposing that the Mayor and City Council approve grants to help fund thirty programs that provide services ranging from a community health clinic to emergency shelters. Also proposed is to continue to fund the School Grant Program. He thanked the Education Committee for their review of the school grant applications, and the Community Advisory Board for their important work in reviewing non-profit grant requests and utilizing the new Outcomes Measurement process in their deliberations.
He concluded his presentation stating that this year's budget of 5.2 million dollars proposes continued funding for a number of important Capital Improvements Projects (CIP) and increased funding for several new initiatives such as:
Lakelands Park, the major addition to our parks inventory, will be completed and operational this year. FY 2005 funding will be used for equipment and furnishings needed to commence operations.
Proposed funding of 1.25 million dollars in the Street Resurfacing CIP to resurface streets identified in our ongoing evaluation program. Advancing age and the damage that can be incurred by snow removal efforts continue to take a heavy toll on City streets. Related to this, is the Street Reconstruction CIP. This account is proposed to be funded at $250,000 in this budget. Staff has begun to notice more extensive damage stemming from heavy traffic (including bus and construction vehicles) on some of our older streets. It is expected that portions of Odend'hal Avenue will require full reconstruction work in FY 2005.
The Gaithersburg Youth Center project was accelerated by one year in order to take advantage of funding opportunities at the state and federal levels. Final planning and design of the facility were moved forward to FY 2004, with construction expected to be completed in FY 2005. Total cost of the project is expected to be approximately $1.8 million.
The FY 2005 CIP allocates approximately 1.2 million dollars in Federal, State, and City funding to the Lakelands Recreation Center project, to be located at Route 28 and Edison Park Drive. This contribution brings the fund balance relating to this project to almost $4.3 million. The City expects to spend approximately $100,000 this summer on a concept/schematic design study of the project.
The Sidewalks, Handicapped Ramps & Bike Pathways CIP is proposed to receive over $200,000 in funding in FY 2005 to overlay paths in Bohrer, Green and Walder Parks, pave a gravel trail in Kentlands, and reconstruct the path and retaining wall between West Riding and Solitaire Court.
In FY 2005, $356,850 in CDBG "direct entitlement" funding is available for capital projects. The contract that we will be proposing to HUD includes installation of a new sidewalk on the south side of East Diamond Avenue leading from the developer-funded sidewalk at the Cannery project to the Fire Museum. Additional funding is proposed to renovate the City-owned building currently housing the GUIDE program, which provides counseling services to teenagers and their families.
The Stormwater Management CIP continues to require major capital funding. In FY 2005, approximately $700,000 is dedicated to projects including construction of a water quality facility at Public Works, participation in a study of the Great Seneca Creek and Muddy Branch watersheds with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, several culvert repairs, and retrofit of one HOA stormwater management facility.
Several City facilities will need repairs or upgrades in FY 2005 and these will be funded out of the Facilities Projects CIP. The Public Works facility on Rabbitt Road is scheduled to receive a new roof and shop doors, the roof at the Water Park facility will also be replaced, and the Parking Garage is scheduled for security upgrades.
Other Capital projects of interest include $100,000 for Landscape Improvements, $80,000 for Street Lighting, $129,400 for the Latitude Observatory project, and $152,000 in City and state funds for Traffic Calming and Signalization.
The Mayor and City Council applauded City Manager Humpton and staff for a job well done on the City's Budget.
Speakers from the audience were:
- Penny Wallace, Director of Community Ministry of Montgomery County, representing Rebecca Wagner, Executive Director, stated they are an interfaith coalition of 130 different congregations in Montgomery that work together to meet the needs of the poor in the county. Services provided is the Upcounty Interfaith Clothing Center which donates clothing and household good, the Sophia House Women's Assessment Center which provides shelter and case management for the chronically mentally ill homeless women, and the Horizon House which is a transitional housing program where homeless disabled women and men work towards independence and self-sufficiency. She thanked the City for their budget efforts over the years and asked for assistance in the FY 2005 budget to maintain their programs.
- Richard Arkin, 121 Selby Street, complimented staff on their budget preparation and efforts. He expressed support for the Olde Towne Revitalization efforts, the Kentlands Mansion and Arts Barn restoration and operating budget. Mr. Arkin questioned and expressed concern as to whether $5,000 was deleted from the budget for operating the Gaithersburg Museum. He referred to the Planning budget of the Master Plan Elements and asked that it include the historic preservation and the transportation element. He asked that a new name be attached to the west side aquatic center stating that the project is not in the Lakelands. He asked that the design be delayed until the Master Planning efforts for Edison Park and its surroundings are completed.
There were no other speakers at the hearing.
- Motion was made by Council Member Schlichting, seconded by Council Member Marraffa, that the City Council record on the above, be held open until close of business on May 27, 2004.
- Public Hearing on Constant Yield Tax Rate and Proposed Property Tax Increase for the City of Gaithersburg for FY '05
Finance and Administration Director Belton stated the public hearing was advertised in the Gaithersburg Gazette on April 17, 2004, with no exhibits in the record file. Staff recommended that the Mayor and City Council conduct a public hearing, notifying the public that the proposed tax rate of $.212 per $100 of assessed value will be voted on with the adoption of the FY ’05 budget on June 7, 2004, and asked for the City Council to make a motion to close the record at the close of business on May 27, 2004.
There were no speakers at the hearing.
Motion was made by Council Member Alster, seconded by Council Member Somerset, that the City Council record on the above, be held open until the close of business on May 27, 2004.
RECESSED THE MAYOR AND COUNCIL MEETING AT 8:24 P.M. FOR A HISTORIC DISTRICT COMMISSION MEETING AND RECONVENED AT 8:38 P.M.
X. ORDINANCES AND RESOLUTIONS
Resolution of the Mayor and City Council Awarding Matching Grants
This resolution authorized the City Manager to award matching grants to Lakelands Ridge for lighting and landscaping at their entrance, in the amount of Three Thousand Nine Hundred Sixty-One Dollars ($3,961); Washingtonian Towns for landscaping, in the amount of Five Thousand Dollars ($5,000); Woods at Muddy Branch for repair to the existing SWM structure and removal of a dead tree, in the amount of Two Thousand Seven Hundred Fifty Dollars ($2,750); and the Woodland Hills for installation of a solar hot water system, in the amount of Three Thousand Two Hundred Fifty Dollars ($3,250); said funds to be expended from the Capital Improvements Budget.
Motion was made by Council Member Marraffa, seconded by, Council Member Somerset, that a RESOLUTION OF THE MAYOR AND CITY COUNCIL AWARDING MATCHING GRANTS TO LAKELANDS RIDGE HOMEOWNERS ASSOCIATION, WASHINGTON TOWNS, THE WOODS AT MUDDY BRANCH AND WOODLAND HILLS HOMEOWNERS ASSOCIATIONS (Resolution No. R-33-04) be approved.
XI. POLICY DISCUSSION
Z-278A and SDP-01-001 (Parklands Sketch Plan and SDP)
Assistant City Manager Felton gave a brief overview of the proposal. He stated that due to the pending Master Plan Update, final action on the plan was not taken. The Master Plan Land Use Element and Special Conditions have now been adopted and the record on both applications above closed April 28, 2004. Since the April 19, 2004 meeting, one additional exhibit was submitted.
Mayor Katz made the following statement:
This evening we are discussing a sketch plan and a schematic development plan that involves a part of the property that we have referred to as the Casey-Metropolitan Grove Tract. These plans are very troubling to me for a number of reasons. I believe that this plan is not in compliance with our Master Plan. In fact as far as I can tell, it has never been in compliance with any Master Plan. Not our old Master Plan of 1997 that would have been in effect when this plan was submitted. And not our new Master Plan of 2003, the one that is effect today. In addition to our concerns about traffic congestion and school overcrowding, it was necessary to update our land use element to comply with state law. The 1997 Master Plan clearly provided for more intense uses than single family dwellings abutting the proposed transit line. An example of the differences would be the 1997 Master Plan identified Map Designation 36 of the portions of this area as commercial-office-residential that may include a highway orientated use. The plan before us shows only single-family residential. Old Map Designation 44 provided for commercial-industrial-office the plan before us this evening shows only single-family residential. And Map Designation 48 provided for mixed residential, once again the plan before us shows only single-family residential When the 2003 land use element was adopted, the Mayor and City Council again designated the subject property for higher uses along the proposed Corridor Cities Transitway. Three alternative development scenarios were provided as options: 1) An office with a commercial component; 2) a private arts entertainment and education center; and 3) a mixed use office-residential with a commercial component. In fact, the mixed use option is very similar to the 1997 Master Plan. In our Master Plan process, we all work together to protect our environment. As an example, the mature forest to north of the proposed Corridor Cities Transitway alignment, was earmarked for preservation. Consistent with sound planning policies, the area immediately adjacent to the Corridor Cities Transitway was designated as an area for higher development than single-family homes. And it is very important to note that this land is zoned MXD. A zone that specifically says, allow development only in a phased or staged fashion to ensure the adequacy of the provision of public facilities and concurrent implementation of community amenities. And then it goes on to say, an applicant for approval under the MXD Zone shall demonstrate at the time of filing a schematic development plan and at the time of site plan approval, that all public facilities are either presently adequate to service, the development requested for approval or will be provided or in place by the completion of the construction of the development reflected in the schematic development plan. It is the intent of this provision that development shall be staged in such a manner as to coordinate development with the provision of public facilities and that such facilities shall be operational at acceptable service levels and capacities. I believe the proposed sketch plan amendment does not accomplish the purposes and objectives for the MXD Zone that includes a true mix of land uses to provide a superior quality of development. While the sketch plan application does include a commercial office component, over 78 contiguous acres are designated for single-family dwellings without any mix of uses whatsoever. The commercial and office component shown on the sketch plan are not even remotely integrated with the residential and would do almost nothing to reduce reliance upon automobiles. While the townhouse/condo schematic development plan option does provide a limited mix of housing types, the housing types are not integrated as they are in our other MXD Zoned areas. The proposed sketch plan does not provide for a superior natural environment by the preservation of trees that is called for in the zone because the most pristine forest on the property to the north of the proposed Corridor Cities Transitway would be eliminated. Existing and planned public facilities are not adequate to serve the proposed development. While the developer did propose to develop a nearby 27-acre City park, very little except for a community pool is proposed for onsite active recreation areas. According to a letter dated April 27, 2001, Montgomery County Public School officials have forecasted that the proposed schematic development plan would generate between 40 and 55 high school students. These high school students generated by this development would attend Quince Orchard High School. Even with the use of two relocatable classrooms, Quince Orchard High School currently has a program capacity for 1,796 students, with an actual enrollment of 1,952 students leaving a deficit of 156 classroom seats. By the 2009 school year, this deficit is forecasted to reach 219 spaces. An increase of over 40 percent beyond the 156 seats already over capacity. MCPS does not have any current plans for projects of that capacity to this school. I believe we all know that Quince Orchard High School is overcrowded and that it would wrong to add additional students to an existing overcrowded school without any plans to alleviate that overcrowding. I also believe the currently operating or funded public roads and transportation facilities are not adequate to support significant residential construction at this time on the property subject to the proposed schematic development plan. While the relevant Master Plan conditions require that traffic studies be conduct and development be phased, so that nearby intersections operate in an acceptable level of service of 1,450 critical lane volume or below. It is noted that the nearby intersection locate at Clopper and Quince Orchard Road is already operating with critical lane volume levels as high as 1,970 based on traffic counts conducted in March of 2004. And that obviously does not include the traffic from this proposed schematic development plan. We each know that we have taken the time and effort to conduct a thorough and comprehensive Master Plan. We did it with the partnership of our citizens and other government agencies. We invited all to participate and we are most appreciative of the many who did participate. We have met on a regional basis with Maryland National Capital Park and Planning and with representatives of the Montgomery County Public Schools. We have also met with the City of Rockville. We realize that our traffic problems do not begin and end with our own borders. We realize that we can not solve our problems alone. When a schematic development plan is submitted for this piece of property that is compatible with our Master Plan, it is my suggestion that age restricted senior housing be included in the residential component of the project. We are hearing more and more the need for this type of housing. We have worked diligently to improve our area. Gaithersburg has been one of the municipalities that continue to discuss the overcrowding of our schools and the overcrowding of our transportation systems. We realize that we cannot solve our problems by ourselves. And we realize that no single development has caused all of the problems. On many occasions, we have acknowledged their hope to be a part of the solution. I believe that these plans should be denied because according to our Code, we must find "the plan is in accord with the area Master Plan and any accompanying special conditions or requirements contained in said Master Plan for the area under consideration." The plan before us does not meet those provisions. And I believe that we should give guidance for any future plans submitted for this property that it be in compliance with our Master Plan which we have all worked so diligently on to have the very best plan for our area. Thank you.
Several Council Members came to the same conclusion on the above applications. Many expressed the need to be consistent with their actions for all development due to the impact on area schools, roads and transit construction. All agreed that the needs of the community should come before the development. Council Member Schlichting read a condition from the Planning Commission's recommendation dated June 11, 2001for the record: the applicant was to present options to the Mayor and Council for shifting densities from the northern site to the southern site as well as increasing housing types on the southern site south of Watkins Mill extended. The option should be more in keeping with the concept of the envisioned transit oriented development consistent with the Master Plan and Housing Policy, while retaining environment areas and typographical features of the site. Having read that, he stated that he would like to see the project move forward, but believed that it is not ready for action at this time. Several City Council Members agreed that the proposed applications were not in compliance with the City's Master Plan.
The City Council directed staff to prepare a resolution denying the request for the above applications at the May 17, 2004 Mayor and City Council meeting.
There being no further business to come before this session of the City Council, the meeting was duly adjourned at 9:05 p.m.