MEETING OF SEPTEMBER 17, 2019
it remembered that the Mayor and Board of Aldermen of the City of Ocean Springs
met in a Recess Meeting at City Hall in the City of Ocean Springs at 6:00 p.m.
on September 17, 2019. The Mayor
presiding, Aldermen Cox, Gill, Authement, Bellman, Blackman and Impey were
present. Alderman Papania was absent. Also present were City Clerk Patty Gaston
and City Attorney Kevin Melchi.
Mayor called the meeting to order.
Cody gave the invocation and the Mayor led the Pledge of Allegiance.
was made by Alderman Blackman, seconded by Alderman Impey and unanimously
carried to accept the addendum to the agenda.
Smith from BMA Engineering discussed the City Capital Improvement Plan. The
Mayor said that he and the Planning & Grants Administrator have been
working with Ben to get a full comprehensive plan for the City, to identify and
prioritize capital improvement needs, primarily for use in grant applications
and budgeting. The Planning & Grants Administrator explained that this will
help when funding becomes available, sometimes with a 3 week application
process, rather than wasting time trying to figure out what should be done, the
priority list will already be completed with information to submit a good
application. Ben explained the cost will vary depending on how involved BMA
Engineering is involved in the City Capital Improvement Plan, their initial
estimate is $40,000 if
they provide all of the support rather than having the information collected by
staff. Alderman Cox requested a workshop to get started with department heads
to provide information.
Taylor from The Foundation Group gave a presentation of services they provide
to bring new businesses to the City of Ocean Springs. Alderman Gill said if we
did decide to work with The Foundation Group, he wants a quarterly review
presented to the Board added to the contract. The Mayor said the only way he
would feel comfortable would be with accountability added to the contract.
Alderman Blackman said this is the same presentation the Board saw before with zero
results and he would not be easy to convince to sign on to something like this
again. Charles said that unlike the previous company, The Foundation Group is
local, knows what is happening locally and has an interest in the City of Ocean
Springs being successful. He said they would be accountable and would have
constant communication with the City.
Parks & Recreation Director gave a presentation of amenity, design and color
options for the Dog Park. She recommended purchasing 3 amenity kits, which
includes a trash receptacle, bench, pet waste station and a leash holder. She
also recommended purchasing 2 water fountains, an additional pet waste station,
3 additional trash cans, 3 additional benches and 4 picnic tablesAlderman Gill
asked what ground cover will be around the water fountains for the dogs. She
responded that would be a question for Overstreet Engineering. She also said
the Dog Park rules need to be reviewed and approved for signage. She said that
the obstacle course and doggie playground equipment will be purchased by
Friends of the Ocean Springs Dog Park through donation efforts. Motion was made
by Alderman Gill, seconded by Alderman Bellman and unanimously carried to
approve the list of amenities recommendations from the Parks & Recreation
Director in the blue color theme and with the bone/paw decor.
Mayor said that Overstreet and Associates have incurred more cost for the dog
park and would like to amend the contract. Alderman Gill said the reason behind
the increase is because when the bid was given the plan was to work with one
contractor but because it was too costly, multiple contractors were used to
reduce thecost to the City. Alderman Blackman said that he should have known
the cost upfront and that is the risk taken when you low bid a project.
Alderman Cox said that he understands Alderman Gill’s point but does not feel
that Jason Overstreet has not spearheaded the project, he feels that he does do
good work when he is called on to be at location. Alderman Cox does not like
that he is asking for more money now, he wants the deal done and Jason’s due
diligence to organize setting the opening date. Motion was made by Alderman
Gill and seconded by Alderman Authement to approve Amendment 1 Professional
Services Agreement Ocean Springs Dog Park – Overstreet & Associates
Consulting Engineers (Exhibit 4-b). Motion carried with Aldermen Gill,
Authement, Bellman and Cox voting aye and Aldermen Blackman and Impey voting
City Planner discussed the request for a License to Encroach to construct a
fence within City right-of-way at 1502 Kensington Avenue. He provided pictures
and said it would not block the view of traffic. The fence would be ten feet
from the edge of the payment, which is the requirement on most streets. The
City would require a hold harmless and any expenses would be at the property
owner expense. Alderman Blackman expressed concern that this would set a
precedence and more requests will be received. Motion was made by Alderman
Authement and seconded by Alderman Cox to allow License to Encroach to
construct a fence within City right-of-way at 1502 Kensington Avenue. Motion
was tied with Aldermen Gill, Authement and Cox voting aye and Aldermen Bellman,
Blackman and Impey voting nay. Motion carried with the Mayor breaking the tie
and voting aye.
Public Works Director said that he requested to deny the winning bid for the
Street/Chassis Sweeper because the specs were not met by the bidder. He
recommends going with the 2nd lowest bid that did meet all of the requested
specs. Motion was made by Alderman Gill, seconded by Alderman Bellman and
unanimously carried to award the bid for the Street/Chassis Sweeper to
Covington Sales for $142,250.00 which includes all of the requested
was made by Alderman Impey, seconded by Alderman Authement and unanimously
carried to approve the Consent Agenda with the exception of items 5-l and 5-m.
Authement requested item 5-l, HR item regarding resignation/termination of an
employee, be discussed in executive session.
City Attorney said that the contract for uniform service provider, Unifirst,
needs the last paragraph changed from what was provided in the agenda. He said
two sentences will be removed and he will provide the revised contract to the
Deputy City Clerk for the minutes (Exhibit 5-m). Motion was made by Alderman
Impey, seconded by Alderman Cox and unanimously carried to approve the contract
for Unifirst provided by the City Attorney.
Executive Assistant to the Mayor & Board of Aldermen explained that it has
been requested that Public Works help with Oktoberfest 2019, with putting out
barricades, banners and other things for a successful event. Last year 32 hours
for $902 was performed for in kind services but this year it should be
approximately 25 hours for $617. Motion was made by Alderman Authement,
seconded by Alderman Cox and unanimously carried to adopt a resolution to match
donated funds for in kind services by the Public Works Department for 25 hours
or $617, to the Friends of the Mary C. O’Keefe Cultural Center of Arts and
Education – Oktoberfest 2019 (Exhibit 6-a).
Blackman asked the interim Fire Chief about a no show charge for a class on the
docket. The interim Fire Chief said it was due to the Fire Training Officer
missing the opportunity to reach out to the Fire Academy, but the situation has
been taken care of and should not happen again. Motion was made by Alderman
Impey, seconded by Alderman Gill and unanimously carried to approve the Docket
of Claims, the Board finds that all expenses are lawful and appropriate
City Clerk said the budget amendments are for cleanup funds and grant activity.
Motion was made by Alderman Cox, seconded by Alderman Blackman and unanimously
carried to approve the budget amendments (Exhibit A-2a).
DEVELOPMENT & PLANNING:
Planning & Grants Administrator said that the Historical Preservation
Committee met for a special call on September 16, 2019 to discuss the
demolition of the structure at 418 Martin Avenue (Exhibit A-2b). She said spoke
with the MS Department of Archives & History that said even though the home
is historical it is not listed as a landmark and could be demolished. Motion
was made by Alderman Gill, seconded by Alderman Authement and unanimously
carried to approve the demolition of the structure at 418 Martin Avenue.
Planning & Grants Administrator said that per LPA guidelines a selection
committee is needed to advertise for Professional Services for the three TIP
projects. The first project is the Ocean
Springs Road Phase I project. As Project Manager, she would serve as Chair, as
well as the Mayor and four others such as the Alderman of the ward where the
project is located, the Alderman at Large, a Public Works member and staff
member. Motion was made by Alderman Gill, seconded by Alderman Authement and
unanimously carried to advertise for engineering services and establish the
selection committee for Engineering services related to the MDOT Transportation
Improvements Program (TIP) Federal Surface Transportation Program (STP) – Ocean
Springs Road Phase 1 – Approved for FY2021; the selection committee will be the
Planning & Grants Administrator, the Mayor, the Public Works Director,
Alderman Gill, Alderman Authement and Alderman Cox (Exhibit 6-d).
Planning & Grants Administrator said the second project is for the East
Beach Sidewalk, which will be from Halstead Road to Holcomb Blvd. Motion was
made by Alderman Cox, seconded by Alderman Authement and unanimously carried to
advertise for related engineering services and establish the selection
committee for related Engineering services for the MDOT Transportation
Improvements Program (TIP) Federal Surface Transportation Program (STP) – East
Beach Sidewalk Approved for FY20; the selection committee will be the Planning
& Grants Administrator, the Mayor, the Public Works Director, Alderman
Papania, Alderman Authement and Alderman Cox (Exhibit 6-e).
Planning & Grants Administrator said the last project is the Wayfinding
study, although advertising is not required it requires a unique skill set that
the City has not requested from the firms used on previous projects. The City
Planner is managing this project. Motion was made by Alderman Blackman,
seconded by Alderman Cox and unanimously carried to advertise related
Planning/Engineering/Design services and establish the selection committee for
related consulting services for the MDOT Transportation Improvements Program
(TIP) Federal Surface Transportation Program (STP) – Study/Technical report
group – City-Wide Wayfinding study approved for FY19; the selection committee
will be the Planning & Grants Administrator, the Mayor, the City Planner,
Alderman Authement and Alderman Cox (Exhibit 6-f).
Authement explained that he was contacted by the owner of 1112 Lafontaine
Avenue to appeal the Tree Committee decision that denied him removal of an oak
tree (Exhibit 6-g). He said there is actually damage done to one of the
structures and the tree will only get bigger causing more damage, and the 20%
trimming that the Tree Committee recommended will not be sufficient. The owner
has already planted two oak trees elsewhere on the property. The City Attorney
said that the appeal should come from the homeowner and not an alderman. A
final decision was tabled until a future meeting that the homeowner can attend.
RESOURCES & RISK MANAGEMENT:
Human Resources Director explained that the HR Committee met to discuss the
PERS retirement re-employment options for the Interim Fire Chief. She said that
there are two re-employment options with PERS for retirees and he is nearing
the salary cap for the current option selected when he was re-employed on July
1, 2019 which requires that the earnings not exceed 25% of his final
compensation. He can change to the
second option which allows working for one-half of the salary in effect for the
position for one-half of the scheduled hours. He will have to change to a part time status for this option, working no
more than eighty hours a month which he has agreed to do. Alderman Blackman
said that the uncertainty has to end and a leader needs to be selected. Motion was made by Alderman Authement,
seconded by Alderman Gill and unanimously carried to change the Interim Fire
Chief to part time status for the PERS retirement re-employment option for
one-half of the salary in effect for the position for one-half of the scheduled
Gary Bachman, 5001 Heritage Lane, said that the Crepe Myrtles on Hwy. 90 are
heavily infested with Crepe Myrtle bark scale infection. He thinks that the
recent trimming caused the wide spread problem. He would like to offer his
services as Mississippi State University Extension professional to help save
the trees. His information was given to Mayor to follow up with him.
Malano, President of Water Board for Colonial Estates, he said that he had a
meeting with the State Department of Health at Coast Chlorinators regarding the
subdivisions water situation. He said the City applied for a block grant to
finish the last of the piping to connect the subdivision to City water. The
state referenced issues in 2012 and 2013 that he had no idea about. The state
requested their board to sign a document that they will be no longer liable for
the fine but they have to agree to be hard lined to the City within 30 – 60
days or they would be liable. The
Planning & Grants Administrator said there was a grant received in 2012 and
most of the work has been completed but has now changed in scope. She has
contacted the point person at DMR for this project and will be moving forward
soon. Angelo said he is meeting next Monday with the state again. The Mayor
said that he would reach out to him tomorrow to get it sorted out.
Lewis, said that an additional $1,500 to the engineer for the Dog Park is
ridiculous. A bid should be held by and the due diligence should have been done
before the bid. It’s his opinion that the engineer owes the City $900 that he
has already gone over. He also said that the school zone sign northbound by the
Middle School needs to be moved to match the southbound lane and the hours need
to be posted. He added that Macedonia Baptist Church is sponsoring a luncheon
for Veterans at the Parks & Recreation Building on the October 9th.
He said that in his opinion the photos used in the retail presentation were
offensive and degrading to women. He thanked the Police for addressing a
courtesy check on a lady on Hanshaw Road that he called concerned.
Bill Moore thanked the Board for the consideration of increasing the Chamber budget
last time. He mentioned the sidewalk project on East Beach especially on
Holcomb and Halstead and said the sidewalks are patchy and drivers speed in the
Cody said that 7,400 vehicles are registered for Cruisin’ the Coast. He thanked
the Board for getting the trees trimmed. He asked that there be a stand by
electrician for Cruisin’. There will be TV shows filming on Saturday October 12th.
He added that he enjoys what he does for the City and appreciates the Board and
City employees for all their support.
Gill said the light is still out at Diller Road and Queen Elizabeth Drive.
Alderman Blackman said if he receives the number off the pole for Singing River
Power, he will reach out to them and get turned back on.
Authement said he received the estimate from Mississippi Power to put a light
at the Harbor and said it would add $38 per month to bill. Motion was made by
Alderman Authement, seconded by Alderman Blackman and unanimously carried to
add a light at the Harbor through Mississippi Power.
Cox asked Public Works if the cones could be moved and capped off where the
lights are missing in front of Glory Bound. He said the decorative light poles
were too expensive to replace and will be replaced with regular street light
Impey thanked the Police and Public Works Departments for addressing the
sinkhole in Lakeview Subdivision quickly. He thanked Dr. Bachman for taking
time to come out and offer his services. He said he wanted to recognize his
friend and radio personality Kip Greggory’s untimely passing at the age of 51
years and send condolences. He said Kip was part of many charity organizations
along the Gulf Coast and will be missed by many. The Mayor echoed the
was made by Alderman Authement, seconded by Alderman Blackman and unanimously
carried to go into closed session to determine the necessity of going into
City Clerk returned to the meeting and announced a motion was made by Alderman
Authement, seconded by Alderman Blackman and unanimously carried to remain in
executive session to discuss litigation regarding the Sands; item 5-l; and
personnel in the Public Works and Fire Departments.
was made by Alderman Blackman, seconded by Alderman Authement and unanimously
carried to suspend employee #347 for five working days without pay beginning
September 23, 2019 for poor job performance.
was made by Alderman Impey, seconded by Alderman Authement and unanimously
carried to table item 5-l, accept resignation for probationary sewer laborer
employee #3272, from the consent agenda.
was made by Alderman Impey, seconded by Alderman Cox and unanimously carried to
come out of executive session.
was made by Alderman Impey, seconded by Alderman Blackman and unanimously
carried to adjourn the meeting until 6:00 p.m. on October 1, 2019.
ended at 9:48 p.m.
Gaston_____________ __/s/Shea Dobson__________