City of Colorado Springs / Commissions & Committees / Public Safety Sales Tax Oversight Committee

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

Public Safety Sales Tax Oversight Committee Meeting Minutes
Meeting Minutes: Wednesday, January 9, 2008
Police Operations Center, 704 S. Nevada Avenue
Committee members in attendance: Richard Hansen, Randy Case II, Bernie Herpin, Pat McElderry, Frank O?Donnell, Winfield Pate, Joe Pelka, Marjorie Smith.
Committee members absent: Ann Carlisle-Holcomb, Welling Clark, Cynthia Halsey
Others present: Steve Cox/CSFD, Sam Azad/CSPD, Joe Curro/CSPD, Ron Gibson/CSPD, Leslie Hickey/Budget, Carol Christjohn/Budget, Janelle Smith/Citizen
Call to Order: Chair Richard Hansen called the meeting to order at 4:30 p.m. New committee member Winfield Pate was introduced.
Citizen Comment: There was one citizen in attendance and she had no comments.
Approval of Minutes: The Chair asked for approval of the minutes from the 11/07/07 meeting. The committee reviewed and accepted the minutes.
MOTION:      Bernie Herpin moved for the approval of the November 7, 2007, meeting minutes as published. Pat McElderry seconded. The motion to approve the minutes passed 8-0-0.
Old Business & Updates:
Police Update: Sam Azad presented the Police update. The anticipated completion in 2007 of the POC renovation has been moved to mid-January 2008 because of the carpet installation. The DNA lab is complete and was done under budget. Police will provide a budget summary next month, and any unused project funding will be returned.
Fire Update: Deputy Chief Steve Cox presented the Fire update. Station 8 work is moving well. The community room will be named for George K. Zoorob, who made the land purchase possible for Station 8. Negotiations for the Colorado Avenue/Wahsatch property for Station 1 have ended and, instead, the Department will pursue negotiations with the Pikes Peak/Prospect property owner. According to Deputy Chief Cox, the Prospect site is more promising and Fire needs information from City Planning and Transportation Engineering before moving forward. The bathroom remodel project has ended because there is no more funding. Medical Squad 8 went into service on December 8, 2007, and is stationed at the Fire Department Complex. The Squad?s paramedics and firefighters have been very busy since the squad went into service. There is no change in the relationship with American Medical Response (AMR) as the Fire Department does not respond to lower acuity calls.
Fire?s fleet was discussed and Fire is about $4,000 - $5,000 underfunded annually to maintain the fleet. Fire will do a study of the refurbish program and present it to the City Manager. Currently, Fire has a 20 year useful life per apparatus (10 years plus 10 years refurbished). More information will be available during the second half of the year. When asked about the somewhat strange design of the new Squad 8 vehicle, Chief Cox explained that it is a rehabilitated vehicle fabricated to meet the needs of the mission and not the tasks of an emergency transport vehicle.
Discussion was held regarding naming the Station 1 community room for Victor Haase. Apparently the Asset naming Board does not have oversight on the naming of internal rooms, which leaves the decision to the Fire Department. Chief Cox believes the FD would support naming the community room in honor of Victor.
MOTION: Joe Pelka moved that if there is a community room at Station 1 that it be named in honor of Victor Haase. Marjorie Smith seconded the motion. The motion was unanimously approved, 8-0-0.
Budget Update: Leslie Hickey presented the Budget update. Collections were large, about 18.81 percent, in November due to onetime audit revenue. Sales tax accounts for most of this increase. The 2007 year-to-date comparison shows a 1.76 percent increase over the previous year. There is money allocated for Station 8 and that is the biggest in terms of capital project spending. There are 2007 unspent funds remaining from Police and Fire but the amount will not be finalized until January or mid-February.
Discussion of 2007 Presentation: Dick Hansen expressed that this issue had already been covered but pointed out that Councilman Purvis had inquired during the October presentation whether the PSST was maxed out. Dick responded that the future capital projects will be done with financing (certificates of participation) and there is no more funding for new capital projects. This led into a conversation about the next steps in getting additional funding for public safety. Randy Case expressed his frustration at not knowing what is going on the Citizens for Effective Government?s (CEG) efforts and would like someone from the CEG to come brief the PSSTOC. Apparently Jan Doran is on the CEG and perhaps she could brief the committee. Randy Case suggested the Committee get on board with this as a coalition and indicated that a grass roots effort, such as the Springs Community Improvements Program (SCIP) would be better to work on this issue. Pat McElderry indicated there might be a top group of agencies already leading this, including former City Manager Lorne Kramer and El Paso County?s Terry Harris. Frank O?Donnell mentioned the competitiveness committee and the work they did but explained that performance budgeting is all that really came of it, and that real innovation is needed. Leslie Hickey will discuss this with Budget Director Lisa Bigelow and see what she advises.
Leslie Hickey indicated that efforts to obtain CIP funding have continued and that the five-year capital improvements program document was presented to City Council just a couple of days prior. The document includes public safety needs, as well as other needs in the City and will go before City Council for final adoption on 1/22/08. She explained that the notion of a SCIP-type process was discussed with City Council, but that any efforts to fund CIP need to coincide with the City?s effort to establish a Citywide fiscal sustainability plan. After additional discussion, Leslie suggested the City Manager or other City representative attend a future PSSTOC meeting to discuss the fiscal sustainability efforts taking place and how additional funding for public safety falls into that effort.
MOTION:       Joe Pelka moved that ?You (Dick Hansen) or your designee appear at the January 22, 2008 (City Council) meeting on behalf of the Public Safety Sales Tax Oversight Committee and propose to City Council that we support the concept of the five-year (CIP) plan; and, as part of that, they (City Council) reinstitute the Springs Community Improvements Program process for public safety; and (offer that) the Committee is prepared to assist.? Randy Case seconded the motion. The motion passed on a vote of 8-0-0.
New Business
Fire Station #8 Grand Opening: The grand opening is scheduled for Thursday, January 17, 2008 at 2:15pm. Deputy Chief Cox invited the committee to the January 17 Station 8 grand opening. Dick Hansen asked how many Committee members are going to the open house and all indicated they would try to attend.
Meeting Schedule for 2008: Options for PSSTOC 2008 monthly meetings were presented, including a monthly meeting schedule, a quarterly schedule, and a modified schedule that shows quarterly meetings on January 9, April 2, and July 2, then switching to monthly meetings on September 3, October 1, and November 5. The Committee agreed with the modified schedule. The next PSSTOC meeting is now tentatively scheduled for April 2, 2008, but if anything comes up between now and then, the Committee is willing to call a special meeting if necessary. Instead of meeting in July, the Committee agreed to skip July and meet on August 6, 2008.
Meeting adjourned at 6:05 p.m.
Notes: The minutes of this meeting were taken by Carol Christjohn. Any omissions or corrections should be brought to the Chairperson?s attention at the next PSSTOC meeting.