Littleton City Council Meeting – Feb. 2, 2010

Citizen Minutes

 There was questionable action taken in this meeting that may have been in violation of the City’s Municipal Code.  A member of one of Littleton’s Quasi-Judicial Boards notified me that they thought Jim Taylor’s participation in item 12(a) was in violation of the Code.  I have provided the wording from the Code at that point in the agenda – you can decide for yourself if the Code was violated or not.

Regular Meeting of City Council

City of Littleton, Colorado

 7:00 p.m.                                                                                                                           Tuesday

Littleton Center                                                                                                     February 2, 2010

 1.         Roll Call

2.         Pledge of Allegiance

3.         Agenda

4.         Minutes

a)         Minutes of Special Meeting January 12, 2010

b)         Minutes of Regular Meeting January 19, 2010

5.         Introduce New City Employees

6.         Citizens Appearances

a)         Guest Citizens – Ty Sharp, recipient of Littleton Police Department Citizen Appreciation Award  – Mr. Sharp pursued a man who he saw exiting from a broken window at the Bow Mar Express gas station.  Mr. Sharp confronted the man and pursued him on foot.  The suspect attempted to strike Mr. Sharp with a hammer and Mr. Sharp was able to subdue and detain the suspect until the police arrived!

b)         Scheduled public appearances

c)         Unscheduled public appearances* (limited to 4 minutes)

 7.         Consent Agenda Items 

a)         Motion Approving Highline Business Improvement District’s Petition for Appointment of New Board Member – Passed 7/0. 

8.         Second and Final Reading on Ordinances and Public Hearings – None

 9.         General Business 

a)         Motion to approve contract to purchase artwork by the Fine Arts Committee – As a matter of disclosure I am a member of the Fine Arts Committee and am very biased in the support of this commission.  Tim Nimz, Director of the Museum, presented the item and displayed a maquette of the project, “Cobbler’s Bench”, planned for LaRocco Park on Windermere.  For those new to Littleton Veto ran his father’s cobbler/shoe shop on Main Street since 1929.  I can remember going in there to have new heels put on my husband’s shoes and always getting engaged in a pleasant and mostly humorous conversation with Veto and then he would charge me .25 or .50 for the repair.  His son followed in his footsteps and their doors were closed a few years back.  Veto has been in poor health and just passed away a couple of weeks ago.  Anyway, the FAC has been going about the process of selecting and commissioning a piece of bronze sculpture to honor the “cobbler’s trade” for the La Rocco Park (which was land acquired from the La Rocco family in the mid 1990’s.)  Doug Clark was the only Councilmember with a concern over the copyright as it would remain with the artist and not the City.  He was told that to purchase the copyright would have a major impact on the cost of the piece – two to three times the cost.  Clark moved to alter the contract on the copyright issue and his motion died for a lack of a second.  Bruce Stahlman made the motion to approve the contract with Maynard Tischler for the commission of the piece.  Motion passed 6/1 with Clark dissenting. 

b)         Motion to Authorize Selection of General Contractor for Police Expansion Project Jose moved and Peggy Cole seconded to approve Saunders Construction and motion passed 6/1 with Clark dissenting. 

c)         Discussion on Board and Commission Interview Questions – If you are interested in this portion of the meeting, please go to the City’s website to listen.  Keep some caffeine close by as you will need it to stay awake.  If you are applying for one of the open positions, you will receive a copy of the questions before your interview. 

10.       Consideration of Committee, Commission and Board Matters

11.       Ordinances on First Reading

12.       Resolutions

a)         Resolution Authorizing a Grant Application for a 2010 Arapahoe County Open Space Grant for the City Ditch Trail, Phase One –   In full disclosure, Jim Taylor informed the audience that the was a member of the South Suburban Foundation that would be responsible for this project but had no monetary or financial gain associated with the project. 

The Municipal Code states: 

1-12-5: DISCLOSURE:

B) A member of the city council who has a personal or private interest in any matter proposed or pending before the city council shall disclose such interest to the city council and shall not vote thereon, as provided for in section 37 of the city charter, and shall refrain from attempting to influence the decisions of the other members of the city council in voting on the matter. (Ord. 9, Series of 2007) 

Charlie Blosten came before Council to ask Council’s permission to apply for a grant that if won would require a 25% match from the City.  The South Suburban Park Foundation would manage the project that the South Suburban Park District would maintain the trail system once completed.    The City Ditch was originally engineered by Richard Little in 1859 and built in 1860-1861.  It runs from Chatfield to Harvard Gulch and used to run through Wash Park into City Park until the T-Rex project.  The ditch is owned by Englewood and Denver.  The City owns 4 and 3/8 inches of the water for over 40 years and has never used it.  The ditch is historic and is located and operated as it was in 1860s in several places.  

The goal of the grant would be to build a pedestrian and bike path from Lee Gulch to Big Dry Creek – eventually.  The City does not own the ditch or the land alongside of the ditch.  Englewood controls almost the entire ditch that runs through Littleton and Blosten has had conversations with Englewood who placed 14 conditions on them with many being reasonable.  One condition he said he could not meet and they backed down.  Phase I would be from the Courthouse up to the City’s Fleet Service Center.  South Suburban Park Foundation that Councilman Taylor sits on has made a financial contribution and will raise money for the project.  Littleton has been asked to be the sponsor of the grant which will be for $233,000 of open space money.  South Suburban Parks and Rec District will help in the design and will maintain the trails after built.  The City will not be required to contribute money for the local match as the South Suburban Park Foundation will raise the money but is expected to ask Littleton for funding.  The South Suburban Board of ­­Directors has offered $10,000 in seed money. 

The grant has to be submitted by Friday and Blosten requested Council’s permission to submit the application. 

Debbie Brinkman asked for a timeline from start to finish and Blosten thought 3 years.  Phase I through Slaughterhouse Gulch is owned by the City and construction of the trail there would be the easiest part of the project. 

Jim Taylor told the Council that Littleton had given $100,000 open space money for the construction of the bridge behind Littleton High School and that project will not be built due to opposition.  Some of the $100,000 has been spent on design but $77,000 remains and he proposed that the South Suburban Board take the leftover money and transfer it to this project to be used for any match and hold the remainder for Phase II. 

  Taylor moved to grant Blosten the permission to apply for the grant and Cole seconded the motion which passed 7/0. 

Taylor then moved to transfer the Big Dry Creek money (the bridge by LHS) to the City Ditch project and Jose seconded. 

Brinkman said they gave the money to South Suburban Foundation for the bridge and since it did not happen why doesn’t the money come back to Littleton.  We need to be more careful about the conservation of these funds. 

Jose said the bridge won’t be built now and the money is being held.  Blosten said they could ask for the $77,000 back and Jose said it could be their contribution to the City Ditch project.  Cole asked if the money needed to be committed tonight and Blosten said no.  Cole wanted to give the public the opportunity to comment. 

Cole moved to postpone the motion to transfer the remaining funds until the next meeting.  There was no second. 

Phil Cernanec moved to re-appropriate $10,000 to match the South Suburban seed money to which there was no second. 

Taylor said whenever money is designated for a specific line item it stays there.  If the motion passes the money will go to the City Ditch and will be spent in the next three years. 

Brinkman said they were giving $77,000 that has not even been asked for and they (South Suburban) have never hesitated in asking in the past and she would like to see the money designated when it was requested. 

Motion passed 4/3 with Cole, Brinkman and Jose dissenting

I left the meeting at this point – 

13.       Comments / Reports

a)         City Manager

b)         City Attorney

c)         Council Members

d)         Council President

e)         DRCOG

14.       Adjournment

 COUNCIL WILL CONDUCT AN EXECUTIVE SESSION TO DISCUSS A PROPERTY ACQUISITION PURSUANT TO C.R.S. 24-6-402(4)(A) TO DISCUSS THE PURCHASE, ACQUISITION, LEASE, TRANSFER, OR SALE OF ANY REAL, PERSONAL, OR OTHER PROPERTY INTEREST AND PURSUANT TO C.R.S 24-4-402(4) (b) AND C.R.S. 24-4-402(4) (e)TO RECEIVE LEGAL ADVICE AND DIRECT NEGOTIATIONS IN REGARDS TO FIRE DEPARTMENT IGA.

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