Committee of the Whole Minutes
VILLAGE OF NORTH AURORA
COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE MEETING MINUTES
MAY 15, 2017
CALL TO ORDER
Mayor Berman called the meeting to order.
In attendance: Mayor Dale Berman, Trustee Mark Gaffino, Trustee Mike Lowery, Trustee Laura Curtis, Trustee Mark Carroll, Trustee Tao Martinez, Trustee Mark Guethle and Village Clerk Lori Murray.
Staff in attendance: Village Administrator Steve Bosco, Finance Director Bill Hannah, Community & Economic Development Director Mike Toth, Public Works Director John Laskowski, Police Chief Dave Summer, Village Attorney Kevin Drendel.
AUDIENCE COMMENTS - None
TRUSTEE COMMENTS - None
1. Gerald Hyundai Economic Incentive Agreement
Mike Toth stated that Gerald Auto Group was seeking feedback regarding the incremental approach to the incentive agreement.
Gerald Auto Group requested the incremental amount, the additional amount of the sales tax that the Village receives in excess of that from a base year be rebated to the Gerald Auto Group over a period of twelve years. Based on projections by the auto group, they anticipate the maximum amount of $1M would be reached in 11 years.
Trustee Curtis asked if Gerald Auto Group was seeking rebates from other entities such as the County and the State. Answer was no. Curtis asked if other towns such as Naperville do similar types of agreements. Village Administrator Steve Bosco said yes, adding that the Village has a history with the auto mall of giving incentives. The reason this is done is because the auto mall is one of the Village’s biggest economic engines. Gerald did the new KIA dealership and redid the Subaru stand-alone dealership. They are also looking to expand their other dealerships.
Trustee Lowery asked if the Village would still be getting the benefit from the taxes based on the sales from the base year. Answer was yes. The Board was in favor of the concept being proposed.
Toth said that staff will continue to work with the Gerald Auto Group and will work on the baseline. Will also work with Attorney Drendel in drafting the economic incentive agreement.
2. PEG Access and Broadcasting Village Board meetings.
Steve Bosco stated that Staff put together a summary as well as options regarding moving forward with the Consortium and broadcasting Village meetings.
Funding: The Village receives 5% of its gross sales of Comcast. Of that 5% franchise fee, 40% goes to funding the Consortium.
Looking at years 2013, 2014 and 2015, the Village paid $83,000 in fees and refunded $42,000. The Consortium retained about $41,000.
4 Options for the Board to consider
Option 1: Village stays in the Consortium and does not do anything differently but broadcast its meetings through them. The Consortium is able to broadcast on Comcast, AT&T, Metranet, live stream and can provide the meetings on YouTube. Cost to the Village would be $41,000 - $84,000. Residents would also be able to utilize the studio at Waubansee Community College.
Option 2: Village would not be a part of the Consortium. The Village would ask for a PEG channel. The start-up costs would be approximately $33,000 the first year. The Village would also want to replace the character generation system every 7 years. There would be no access to the studio at Waubansee Community College.
Option 3: Village would video tape its own meetings via camera and post to YouTube. Cost for the camera would be approximately $3,000. Camera would be placed in a fixed location. There would be no access to studio.
Option 4: The Village would have studio PEG access through the Consortium. The Village would stay in the Consortium, but only if the Village Board negotiates a rate for a fair number.
Trustee Carroll asked how the amount of the refund is determined each year. Mike Rennels of FVTV (Fox Valley TV) said that the amount was set by the Board at 50% of the contribution.
Rennels noted that since 2007, the Consortium has been refunding back 50% to each of the communities that are part of the Consortium. Rennels said that taping the village meetings would be a great step forward and the village would be missing out if it is not part of the Consortium since it is currently broadcasting meetings for the other communities within the Consortium. Rennels said that Yorkville is hooked up for livestream. Professional HD cameras are used and a camera operator is also present. The next day the tape is brought back to the studio and it is streamed live and aired twice a day, every day, the week after. Rennels also stated that the Consortium works closely with different programs and clubs in the Village such as the Mother’s Club and Lion’s Club.
Trustee Lowery asked if Rennels was aware of the viewership for the public access channel. Rennels said he hopes to get that information through their analytics.
Trustee Curtis said that the Board is in agreement about broadcasting the Village meetings, however, felt that the Village has been paying $40,000 a year for years and didn’t get anything in return. Curtis said that when taking a look at the cost benefit analysis on the chart, the Village is looking at a 10-year expense of a half million to a million dollars versus other options to broadcast the same information.
Curtis said that it is not the municipalities’ job to make public broadcasting education available to residents. There is funding through other taxable bodies. Curtis stated she cannot see spending half a million dollars and subsidizing these programs when we can achieve our goal which is making our meetings public, at a fraction of the cost. Rennels said there are numerous organizations that make use of this channel on a regular basis. Curtis said the village is a municipal entity and we are not supposed to be subsidizing the mothers club or the lions club which are non-profit and have their own way of generating their own revenue through donations.
Carroll said that if we can lower the cost, he sees a great benefit to the community. Gaffino said that the Village needs to be utilizing this service.
Guethle asked if the Consortium could provide a link for the recordings that are done so that it can be shared. Rennels said yes.
Mayor Berman said that it appears that the Board wants to continue in some capacity so will need to have something in writing to vote on.
3. Donation Bins
Code Enforcement has sited a property owner in town for having an unattended collection bin in town. The Village was approached by the attorney of the collection bin company stating that the village was unconstitutionally applying provisions to these collection bins since there are other establishments like Goodwill and Salvation Army that have the ability to provide advertisements on their locations and they should have the same provided to them on their box. There was discussion about allowing the container with a screening mechanism.
Gaffino said he did not want to change what the Village currently has in place.
Toth said he would work with Attorney Drendel to put together an agreement that would allow the bins in back of buildings with screening.
EXECUTIVE SESSION – NONE
Motion for adjournment made by Trustee Carroll and seconded by Trustee Curtis. All in favor. Motion approved.
Lori J. Murray