City Council (View All)
Tuesday, June 17, 2014
MINUTES FOR THE REGULAR MEETING
ASHLAND CITY COUNCIL
June 17, 2014
1175 E. Main Street
CALL TO ORDER
Mayor Stromberg called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m. in the Civic Center Council Chambers.
Councilor Voisin, Morris, Lemhouse, Slattery, Rosenthal, and Marsh were present.
Mayor Stromberg announced vacancies on the Airport, Wildfire Mitigation, Forest Lands, Historic, Public Arts, and Tree Commissions.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES
The minutes of the Special Meeting of May 29, 2014, Study Session of June 2, 2014 and Business Meeting of June 3, 2014 were approved as presented.
Mayor Stromberg moved PUBLIC FORUM before the CONSENT AGENDA and agenda items 3. Adoption of a resolution titled, “A resolution adopting a supplemental budget establishing appropriations within the 2013-2015 biennium budget” and 4. Adoption of a resolution titled, “A resolution transferring appropriations within the 2013-2015 biennium budget,” under ORDINANCES, RESOLUTIONS AND CONTRACTS after the first Public Hearing.
SPECIAL PRESENTATIONS & AWARDS
1. Report on winter shelter program for 2013-2014
Heidi Parker explained she was the volunteer coordinator for the homeless winter shelters in Ashland and reported the 2013-14 shelter was successful. They were able to provide shelter nights Monday through Thursday from Thanksgiving Week through mid April for a total of 78 nights of shelter, and two emergency shelter nights. They served more people than originally anticipated averaging twenty guests per night. They utilized 80 volunteers and were able to have additional volunteers provide food and greet guests. They now had a volunteer base of 116, all from Ashland. The need for showers and clean clothes was a challenge and she expressed gratitude to OHRA (Options for Homeless Residents of Ashland) for the new shower and laundry unit. The goal was shelter every night during the winter. Each shelter had a volunteer coordinator. The Presbyterian Church hosted Monday nights. The City of Ashland, Temple Emek Shalom and the Rogue Valley Unitarian Universalists Fellowship (RVUUF) hosted Tuesday and Thursday nights at Pioneer Hall. Trinity Episcopal Church hosted Wednesday nights.
John Wieczorek represented RVUUF and with the help of the City and Temple Emek Shalom, they provided shelter to 725 guests at Pioneer Hall during the winter. They averaged 16 men and 5 women with 2.2 dogs each night.
Russ Otte represented Trinity Episcopal Church. Average attendance was slightly over 20 people per night. With the help of guests, the Church would try to accommodate 30 guests each night next winter. He noted the challenge and difficulty having to turn people away when the shelter reached capacity and encouraged non-church members to volunteer.
Bob, last name unknown, represented the First Presbyterian Church shelter who served 433 people, 362 men, 71 women, 3 children, and 35 dogs and cats, averaging over 20 people each night. The Church had successfully run its shelter for seven years.
Ms. Parker explained the process for emergency shelter nights that started with City Administrator contacting her when they needed emergency shelter. There was a specific group of volunteers and duties for emergency shelter nights as well. If one of the sites were unable to serve as an emergency shelter, the City would provide an available site.
2. Semi-annual report from the Ashland Community Resource Center
Leigh Madsen, the manager of the Ashland Community Resource Center and David Mulig the director of support services at ACCESS provided the report. Mr. Madsen shared three stories where the Resource Center helped a homeless family, a person who lost their job and house and a chronically homeless man. Over the past four months, the Center helped house nine people, helped over nine people find employment and assisted several chronically homeless individuals.
Next steps were serving people already housed. The Resource Center planned to introduce several trainings from ACCESS that included nutrition, lessons on cooking healthy food, Ready to Rent certification and money management. During the summer school closures, the Maslow Project representative would work out of the Center on Tuesdays.
The Resource Center was also able to get three people to Jackson County Mental Health Service. Currently Jackson County Mental Health did not have enough people to service clients and were unable to come to Ashland. The Resource Center would focus on additional funds and increasing services to low-income households.
3. Thank you presentation to Recology for their assistance with the FireWise Day activities
Mayor Stromberg and Fire Chief John Karns presented Recology representative and Conservation Commissioner Risa Buck with a plaque that recognized Recology’s efforts during FireWise Day.
1. Approval of commission, committee, and board minutes
2. Appointments to Band Board
3. Appointment to Conservation Commission
4. Appointment to Tree Commission
5. Appointment to Wildfire Mitigation Commission
6. Liquor license application for Mark Hedford dba Martolli’s Hand Tossed Pizza
7. Liquor license application for Christian Canady dba Home State BBQ
8. Liquor license application for Hani Hajje dba Taj Indian Restaurant
9. Liquor license application for Christian Senf dba Gil’s
10. Liquor license application for Edward “Web” Staunton dba North West Raw
11. Approval of two intergovernmental agreements with Emergency Communications of Southern Oregon for dispatch services
12. Approval of intergovernmental agreement with the Oregon Department of Transportation for commercial vehicle inspection services
13. Donation of 2006 Ford Lift Van to Parks and Recreation Department from RVTD
14. Declaration and authorization to dispose of 1993 Type 1 Fire Pumper
15. Approval of intergovernmental agreement with the City of Medford for acceptance and disposal of partially treated biosolids
Councilor Slattery/Rosenthal m/s to approve Consent Agenda items. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.
Elizabeth Hallett/938 Mountain Meadows Circle/Was actively involved with Southern Oregon Climate Action Now (SOCAN) and spoke on divestment from fossil fuels. She referenced the Valdez Principals and expressed concern regarding the fossil fuel industry’s business plan to dump five times more carbon dioxide into the atmosphere than was safe. Ashland should not invest in companies lobbying against cleaner energy solutions and funding climate denial and anti-science think tanks.
Donna Swanson/863 Plum Ridge Drive/Volunteered with SOCAN and shared examples of what other cities were doing to combat the global warming issue through fossil fuel divestment and investing in alternative energy sources.
Tamsin Taylor/580 Mountain Meadows Drive/Was also involved with SOCAN’s Divestment Project. The Local Government Investment Pool included fossil fuels and therefore the City of Ashland invested in fossil fuels. She recommended the City join other cities in Oregon by signing a resolution to urge the short-term investment board, the retirement board of the Public Employment Retirement System and the Oregon State Treasurer to review holdings in fossil fuel companies, cease investments in fossil fuel companies, and seek investment opportunities in sustainable energy sources.
Winston Friedman/1073 E Main Street/Was a SOCAN Divestment Project member and read from the draft resolution submitted into the record SOCAN wanted Council to consider and pass.
Marni Koopman/1790 Homes Avenue/Explained she was the Chair of the Conservation Commission and read a statement submitted into the record on behalf of the Conservation Commission supporting divestment from fossil fuels.
Johnny Bolton/165 E Main Street/Referred to the recent shooting by Jackson County police that resulted in the death of an Ashland resident. He recommended the police wear body worn cameras. The cameras would provide evidence and accountability.
Judy Kerstetter/1354 Quincy Street/Addressed the irresponsible spraying of the herbicide Glyphosate, marketed by Monsanto as Round Up. A property owner above her apartment sprayed 100-feet of Glyphosate over the past six months and wanted to know if a permit to use herbicide was required in Ashland.
Nancy Nelson/149 Clear Creek Drive #202/Volunteered with Oregon Right to Know to obtain enough petition signatures to get the initiative For Labeling GMOs on the 2014 ballot. The deadline was Monday June 23, 2014 for mail in signatures, and the deadline for signing petitions was the end of June.
Councilor Voisin/Marsh m/s put on the agenda the resolution for the City Council to divest in fossil fuels. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.
- Public Hearing and first and second reading of an ordinance titled, “An ordinance levying taxes for the period of July 1, 2014 to and including June 30, 2015, such taxes in the sum of $10,083, 098 upon all real and personal property subject to assessment and levy within the corporate limits of the City of Ashland, Jackson County, Oregon”
Public Hearing Open: 8:06 p.m.
Public Hearing Closed: 8:06 p.m.
Mr. Tuneberg read the ordinance aloud.
- Adoption of a resolution titled, “A resolution certifying that the City of Ashland provides the following four or more municipal services enumerated section 1, ORS 221.760”
Councilor Rosenthal/Slattery m/s to approve Resolution #2014-11. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.
- Adoption of a resolution titled, “A resolution declaring the City’s election to receive state revenues”
Councilor Rosenthal/Slattery m/s to approve Resolution #2014-10. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.
Councilor Rosenthal/Marsh m/s to approve First Reading and Second Reading by emergency clause to approve Ordinance #3096. Roll Call Vote: Councilor Voisin, Marsh, Lemhouse, Slattery, Morris and Rosenthal, YES. Motion passed.
Mr. Tuneberg clarified the correct amount was $10,866,963 and noted the agenda was incorrect.
ORDINANCES, RESOLUTIONS AND CONTRACTS
1. Adoption of a resolution titled, “A resolution adopting a supplemental budget establishing appropriations within the 2013-2015 biennium budget”
Councilor Voisin/Slattery m/s to approve Resolution #2014-12. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.
2. Adoption of a resolution titled, “A resolution transferring appropriations within the 2013-2015 biennium budget”
Councilor Morris/Voisin m/s to approve Resolution #2014-13. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.
PUBLIC HEARINGS -continued
2. Public Hearing and first reading by title only of an ordinance titled, “An ordinance amending 18.08, 18.32.025, 18.40.030, and 18.52.020 of the Ashland Municipal Code establishing medical marijuana dispensaries as a special permitted use in the Commercial (C-1), Employment (E-1) and Industrial (M-1) zoning districts”
Community Development Director Bill Molnar, Planning Commission Chair Richard Kaplan, and Planning Manager Maria Harris explained the proposed ordinance would allow dispensaries on a property with a boundary line adjacent to higher order boulevards in the C-1, E-1, and M-1 zones, where high volume uses currently exist although traffic volumes for dispensaries was unknown at this time. Busier streets would also provide natural surveillance and reduce security concerns. The Planning Commission recommended prohibiting dispensaries within the downtown design standard zone or the north side of Lithia Way. The Commission suggested making dispensaries a special permitted use rather than a conditional use. The special permitted use provided clear land use requirements and a predictable planning approval process for business owners and neighbors. Dispensaries would locate in a permanent building with no outside storage. Site and building exterior would be consistent with site design and use standards. No security bars on windows or doors, no drive up and hours of operation confined to 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. It would also have secure marijuana disposal requirements. The Planning Commission recommended adding medical marijuana dispensaries as a prohibited home occupation to the ordinance. It also did not recommend dispensaries in the downtown area or Rail Road District until traffic, parking, and potential residential impacts were determined.
Council expressed concern locating dispensaries on boulevards that bordered residential areas. Staff responded the properties along the boulevard zoned commercial where the backs of the properties abutted residentially zoned properties had a history of being adjacent to more intense commercial activity.
The Commission also looked where pharmacies were generally located as well as high volume retail uses. The front door of the dispensary would not necessarily face the boulevard or on the corner of a lateral street.
City Attorney Dave Lohman explained the underlying issue with time, place, and manner was whether Council wanted a special permit for dispensaries similar to the permit provisions for tobacco retailers, pawn shops, taxis, and tour buses.
One issue in both ordinances was the hours provision and securing the disposal of marijuana remnants. It depended where Council wanted the flexibility. It was easier to change a time, place, and manner ordinance than a land use ordinance. Section 6.50.040 Initial Permit Application and Fee Requirements described the permit application and fee requirements. Section 6.50.060 Permit Conditions listed potential restrictions. If Council adopted the ordinance Section 6.50.060 Permit Conditions (I) would have to change from a person convicted once or more in the past five years or twice or more in the past ten years for the manufacture or delivery of a controlled substance, to the reflect the state’s timeframe of convicted twice ever.
Section 6.50.070 Examination of Books, Records, and Premises was similar to the requirements for the Transient Occupancy Tax with the exemption that it allowed actual onsite inspections. Section 6.50.090 Confidentiality explained the City would abide by public records laws but keep information as confidential as possible. This provision was similar to the Business License, Food and Beverage, and Transient Occupancy Tax ordinances.
Mr. Lohman clarified the police would not have to obtain a search warrant to search a dispensary but would require reasonable suspicion. The ordinance would not set precedence for legalized marijuana.
Public Hearing Open: 8:53 p.m.
William Clary/460 Williamson Way/Supported Council adopting the ordinance proposed by the Planning Commission. The ordinance had gone through the public process and balanced the needs of citizens requiring access to medical marijuana and traffic related concerns that would affect residential zones. Medical marijuana dispensaries had the potential to morph into a new business should marijuana be legalized. Legalization could create high traffic impact and overrun low capacity residential streets. The located adjacent to a boulevard was a reasonable forward-looking requirement.
Ronda Barker/459 Williamson Way/Until the proposals were final, residents from Williamson Way wanted to keep Council aware the narrow streets of their neighborhood were not designed to handle the increased traffic generated with a dispensary. Boulevards were bettered suited for high volumes of traffic. The proposed ordinance addressed the needs of residential areas and provided option for the businesses to be located.
David Helmich/468 Williamson Way/Supported the proposed ordinance and encouraged Council to approve the Planning Commission’s ordinance as drafted and use the boulevard standard.
Nancy Nelson/149 Clear Creek Drive #202/Objected to medical marijuana dispensaries in Ashland. Just because the state approved dispensaries did not mean the City should have them. Medical marijuana should be contained in a medical clinic or hospital and the doctors subject to malpractice suits for prescribing illegal substances.
Councilor Voisin/Rosenthal m/s to extend Public Hearing until 9:15 p.m. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.
Michael Hersh/922 Morton Street/Attended the Planning Commission meetings and thought the commission did well to be fair. He urged Council to think of the children first and that families with children should be the major concern. Dispensaries should be on boulevards.
Neal Kinzie/180 Clear Creek Drive/Sent a letter to Council regarding the E-1 zoning on Clear Creek Drive that was zoned for a medical marijuana facility and later removed. Their mission was to serve the needs of patients already coming to Ashland Alternative Health on Clear Creek Drive. They were not interested in morphing into a location that served a recreational interest. The average age of a medical marijuana cardholder was in the fifties and they deserved a professional discrete location to acquire medication to treat problems that benefited from the active ingredient in cannabis. A professional medical marijuana dispensary would fit in the area without disrupting the neighborhood.
Alex Rogers/450 Park Ridge Place/Explained he was the CEO and owner of Ashland Alternative Health and treated 3,000 patients each year on Clear Creek Drive. He understood the concerns regarding regulating dispensaries in Ashland. There was a difference between recreational and medical marijuana. He supported Neal Kinzie who had a license from the state for a medical marijuana dispensary. Council’s authority was crucial in regulating recreational. However, people who were sick and used medical marijuana needed a place to go.
Jennifer Drake/467 Elm Street/Phoenix, OR/Represented the valley as a community member to remind Council that what it decided would set a precedent in the valley. She supported the Planning Commission’s recommendation and urged Council to approve the proposed ordinance.
Councilor Voisin/Rosenthal m/s to extend Public Hearing until 9:30 p.m. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.
Linda Stickle/492 Rogue Place/Expressed concern with traffic impact regarding the proposed medical marijuana dispensary at 400 Williamson Way. She supported the Planning Commission’s proposed ordinance. Neighborhoods adjacent to E-1 zones needed to be protected and the land use proposal would accomplish that by keeping dispensaries on boulevards. If a dispensary did open in an E-1 area near a neighborhood, there must be strong rules in place to protect the residential area from negative impacts.
Public Hearing Closed: 9:12 p.m.
Councilor Voisin/Rosenthal m/s to approve First Reading of an ordinance titled, “An ordinance amending 18.08, 18.32.025, 18.40.030 and 18.52.020 of the Ashland Municipal Code establishing medical marijuana dispensaries as a special permitted use in the Commercial (C-1), Employment (E-1), and Industrial (M-1) zoning districts, to direct staff to add a prohibition of medical marijuana dispensaries as a home occupation, and to move the ordinance on to Second Reading.
DISCUSSION: Council Voisin thought the ordinance addressed issues from the community and Council.
Councilor Rosenthal agreed and thought it might be overly restrictive regarding site considerations but it was a reasonable start. Councilor Morris did not support the proposed ordinance and did not think a dispensary would create the traffic impacts suggested. Another issue was E-1 zones with R-1 overlays. This allowed the R-1 overlay to dictate what could occur in E-1 and was never the intention of R-1 overlays. The E-1 was the base zone and the R-1 overlays allowed people to live in those areas. He also thought it should be a conditional use instead of special permitted use. Dispensaries should be a conditional use in E-1 and C-1. The conditional use would evaluate it based on the site.
Councilor Marsh thought restricting dispensaries to only boulevard locations could be a deterrent. There were people in the community in need of medical marijuana. The Police Chief had testified he was not concerned with problems associated with teenagers, the dispensaries would attract older customers, and teenagers could get marijuana easily from other sources. The E-1 zones could open up more and she was not sure if it should require a special permitted use with a buffer or a conditional use. The E-1 zone already had a 200-foot buffer in place and the time, place, and manner restrictions would regulate ventilation systems and hours.
Councilor Slattery was concerned with conditional use permits versus special permitted use and wanted a better understanding of the impacts of each. The Williamson Way neighborhood did not want a dispensary but could end up with another business that generated the same or more traffic and parking issues.
Councilor Lemhouse thought Council needed to take a cautious and measured approach to dispensaries, it was easier to open up requirements in the future instead of becoming more restrictive. He supported restricting the allowed areas to boulevards and thought Council should consider the impact if the state legalized marijuana. This was a dangerous drug, classified as illegal and illicit under federal law. He supported those who needed it but it was a drug.
Councilor Lemhouse motion to amend the motion restricting the dispensaries from the Siskiyou Boulevard area from Gresham Street to Wightman Street. Motion died for lack of a second.
Continued discussion on main motion:
Councilor Voisin thought if the downtown was restricted due to traffic and congestion, the E-1 restrictions should also be maintained.
Councilor Marsh/Morris m/s to suspend Council Rules in order to allow staff to answer questions.
Voice Vote: Councilor Morris, Lemhouse, Slattery, Rosenthal, and Marsh, YES; Councilor Voisin, NO. Motion passed 5-1.
Staff explained there was little difference between conditional use and special permitted use. If traffic was a factor, a conditional use permit provided Council with more authority. They took a conditional use and compared it to the target use of the zone. Other factors could go into a conditional use permit like neighborhood issues brought up during the public hearing.
The Planning Commission initially discussed treating dispensaries like pharmacies but pharmacies were typically closer to residential areas. Medical marijuana dispensaries were a new use with many unknowns. Staff went on to provide an example of a business with a residential buffer and a conditional use permit. A residential buffer and a conditional use permit would open up potential areas for dispensaries on Clear Creek Drive, Croman, the Hersey Street industrial zone, the airport location, and parts of east Ashland. The 200-foot buffer could apply to the actual building or the property line.
Councilor Marsh/Slattery m/s to amend the main motion that in addition to the proposed Planning Commission recommendations dispensaries in E-1 and C-1 zones with a 200-foot buffer from residential zones, property to property and a conditional use permit process.
DISCUSSION: Councilor Marsh clarified the conditional use permit would apply only to E-1 and C-1 and was in addition to the special permitted use on the boulevard. There were areas in the E-1 that were appropriate for dispensaries. An E-1 on the boulevard would still require a special permitted use. Councilor Lemhouse preferred all dispensaries require a conditional use permit and at a minimum, maintain the current zones, and if not, expand them to what was suggested earlier.
Councilor Voisin did not think 200 feet was enough of a buffer nor did she believe there were high traffic businesses in E-1 zones since zone was typically difficult to access. Businesses that would attract large numbers of people needed to be on the boulevard and not near residential areas. She would not support the amendment. Since this was new, she wanted to see the traffic impact. Puffs received 100-200 customers a day. Roll Call Vote: Councilor Marsh, Morris, Slattery, and Rosenthal, YES; Councilor Lemhouse and Voisin, NO. Motion passed 4-2.
Councilor Marsh/Morris motion to remove hours from the ordinance as it would be addressed in the time, place, and manner ordinance. Roll Call Vote: Councilor Marsh, Morris, Slattery, Rosenthal, Lemhouse, and Voisin, YES. Motion passed.
Councilor Voisin motion to remove from special use permit the downtown design standard zone. Motion died for lack of a second.
Councilor Slattery/Marsh m/s to call for the question. Roll Call Vote: Councilor Marsh, Morris, Slattery, Rosenthal, Lemhouse, and Voisin, YES. Motion passed.
Roll Call Vote on amended main motion: Councilor Marsh, Morris, Slattery, Rosenthal, and Lemhouse, YES; Councilor Voisin, NO. Motion passed 5-1.
- First reading by title only of an ordinance titled, “An ordinance amending the Ashland Municipal Code Title 6 Business Licenses and Regulations to add Chapter 6.50 establishing time, place, and manner regulations and a permitting process for medical marijuana dispensaries”
Councilor Slattery/Marsh m/s to move First Reading of the ordinance to the July 1, 2014 Council agenda. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.
ORDINANCES, RESOLUTIONS AND CONTRACTS - continued
3. First reading by title only of an ordinance titled, “An ordinance restricting openly carrying loaded firearms in public places”
Councilor Lemhouse/Slattery m/s to object consideration of the First Reading by title only of an ordinance titled, “An ordinance restricting openly carrying loaded firearms in public places.”
Roll Call Vote: Councilor Slattery supported the motion because there was not enough of a law to pass the ordinance, YES; Councilor Rosenthal did not think it would make the community safer although he wished it could, YES; Councilor Lemhouse understood the will of the people to protect the community but the ordinance would not address the issue. It would affect people who had not broken any laws. The ordinance would not be effective, YES; Councilor Marsh initially wanted to see what could happen locally because the community was part of a culture beset by gun violence and felt it was important to do something as a statement of community values. However, discussions were splintering the community. She and the Mayor started of group discussion for and against the ordinance and found some areas that if it moved forward could add value and education, YES; Councilor Morris clarified Council did not weaken the ordinance and had staff remove items so it would uphold in a court of law. He supported the group discussion Councilor Marsh and the Mayor were having with the community and thought the group could improve safety around firearms, YES. Councilor Voisin thought Council had gutted the ordinance brought forward by citizens and subsequently weakened what was originally a moderate commonsense gun ordinance to protect children, citizens, and tourists. This was an opportunity to provide some citizens with a sense of safety around guns, NO. Motion passed 5-1.
Mayor Stromberg noted the ordinance did not demonstrate a local need and was out of context for the community, divisive, and actually resulted in open carry. The problem with gun control was awful and this was not the way to go about it.
4. First reading by title only of an ordinance titled, “An ordinance amending Ashland Municipal Code Chapter 1.08 General Penalty, Sections 1.08.010, 1.08.020, and 1.08.030 compliant with current state statues”
Item delayed due to time constraints.
UNFINISHED BUSINESS - None
NEW AND MISCELLANEOUS BUSINESS
- Discussion of ad-hoc Recycle Center Committee draft recommendations
Councilor Slattery/Marsh m/s to extend the duration of the Ad-hoc Recycle Center Committee to October 2014. Voice Vote: all AYES. Motion passed.
2. Appointment to Citizen Budget Committee
Item delayed due to time constraints
OTHER BUSINESS FROM COUNCIL MEMBERS/REPORTS FROM COUNCIL LIAISONS
- Discussion regarding proposed Resolution for divestment of investments related to Fossil Fuels.
Item delayed due to time constraints.
Meeting adjourned at 10:30 p.m.
Barbara Christensen, City Recorder John Stromberg, Mayor