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The following summary minutes are not official until adoption by Simpsonville City Council. Pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act, notice of this meeting date, time, place, and agenda items was posted on the bulletin at Simpsonville City Hall and faxed to the newspapers, radio stations and any concerned citizens upon request.

 

SIMPSONVILLE CITY COUNCIL

MINUTES

WORKSHOP SESSION

OCTOBER 24, 2006 6:30 P.M.

CALL TO ORDER:

Mayor:   Call the October Workshop meeting of Simpsonville City Council to order. I’d like to welcome you all here tonight and thank you for coming. I want to recognize some special guests we have here tonight from Jr. Girl Scout Troop 326. So young ladies wherever you are would you raise your hands so that we can see you. All right, thank you for coming. We hope you’ll find it entertaining and educational. Ms. Bridgeman would you call the Roll please.

 

ROLL CALL:

Ms. Bridgeman:   Yes sir.

Councilmember Bridges:   Here

      Councilmember Garrett   Here

      Councilmember Lawrence:   Here

      Councilmember Gecy:   Here

      Councilmember Zitricki:   Here

      Councilmember Larson:   Here

      Mayor Waldrop:     Here

 

Mayor:     Thank you.

 

INVOCATION:   

Mayor:     Councilmember Gecy would you be in charge of being sure that this meeting has adequate blessings upon it. A minute of silence was held in remembers of Mr. Ray Talley. Mr. Gecy asked Pastor Cole to say the blessing.

 

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

Mayor:     Would you join us now in the Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag please.

 

CITIZEN COMMENTS:

Mayor:     All right, this is the portion of the meeting where we invite citizen comments. I see that we have several folks here tonight so I’ll still be somewhat liberal with the time but I’d ask you to try to stick to the time allotted if you can. If you called ahead and asked to be placed on the Agenda we’ll give you 4 minutes to speak to us about anything you’ve got on your mind. And if you signed up at the door we’ll give you two minutes. We’ll begin with those who asked to be placed on the Agenda. And when I call your name if you will, please approach the podium, give us your address for the record and then your time will begin. First is Victor Lebedovych

 

•  Victor Lebedovych – Sewer Tap Fairview Road

Mr. Lebedovych:   110 Annanberg Lane , Easley, SC. 29642. As I mentioned my name is Victor Lebedovych and I’m an oral and facial surgeon. I recently purchased office space on Fairview Road . Construction on my office building was scheduled to begin last Monday. However, due to the recent sewage problems in the Hunters Woods subdivision my building permit was placed on hold. Because of the moratorium placed on permits I have come before the City Council today to express my concern over this moratorium and to hopefully get this moratorium lifted. I was in a group practice in Easley for the past year and a half. I recently decided to open my practice. In choosing a site for an office I took several factors into consideration, which include the areas need for my specialty, location and growth opportunity. I chose Simpsonville because of the City’s forward thinking and vision. I have made a commitment to the Community of Simpsonville on a personal and financial level. During my property acquisition and due diligence phase I was made aware of a potential sewer capacity issue and was advised by my attorney and real estate agent to meet with the City sewer officials to discuss the situation and to gather appropriate assurances in writing guaranteeing me sewer service. The entire real estate transaction was contingent upon the satisfactory assurances by the City of Simpsonville , namely Jay Crawford and his staff, that there would be no problem getting sewer permits or any capacity issues with my building. With the proper documentation in hand and being satisfied that all potential hurdles were crossed, I purchased the building August of 2006. Furthermore, according to the records, my building had been tapped into the sewer lines in February of 2005. Imagine my surprise and frustration when my building permit was placed on hold. I understand the City’s position of protecting it’s citizens and I understand it’s interest in investigating the sewer issue. But as it has been reported in the Greenville News and confirmed by the sewer department that the unfortunate back-up that affected so many of the citizens was due to construction debris not a capacity issue. The City’s decision to place a moratorium on permits has broad reaching implications. It already has delayed my tight construction schedule, which has greatly affected me financially. I was entitled to $108,000 tax credit for 2006 as long as my office opened in this calendar year. With this recent delay it is unlikely that I’ll be able to take advantage of this tax credit. I have also incurred increased costs associated with the contractors and lost production income that is running into tens of thousands of dollars. As of November 15 th I owe the bank $10,000 a month on interest payments alone coming out of my own savings. In addition the value of my building could be greatly affected if sewage service is denied. May I remind the council that I purchased this building under the assurances and documentation supplied to me by the City and its officials. Lastly, this building and this permit represents my entire livelihood and I stand to go into personal bankruptcy if this matter is not quickly resolved. I would like to supply the council with the documentation I received from the City and the construction time table. According to the City as of September 25 th of 2006 a month ago, I was granted a permit for 420 gallons a day. Initially this site was permitted for 8,000 gallons a day. So as you can see I’m asking for a very small portion of that 8,000 gallons. In addition I will supply the Board with copies of the Western Carolina Letters stating that there was enough sewer capacity for my building. Lastly I respectfully ask the council to quickly resolve this matter and grant me my permit. Please consider that I have invested an enormous amount of time, energy and personal money into starting my practice. My entire career is being placed on hold until this matter is resolved. I am not a developer or a big corporation with unlimited resources. I have a name and a face and I would like council to see the people that their decisions affect. Thank you.

 

Mayor:     Thank you.

 

Mr. Lebedovych:   Do you all want the documentation?

 

Mayor:     If you don’t mind give it to the Clerk and she’ll distribute it to us. Anybody have any comments on that. Mr. Hawes do you have any comments.

 

Mr. Hawes:   No.

 

Mayor:     All right, next on the agenda is Glenn Teachey. Mr. Teachey if you’ll come up to the podium please and give us your address for the record and you may begin.

 

•  Glenn Teachey, property on Harrison Bridge Road and the circle that goes all the way back around to Phoenix in that area.

The main reason I’m here tonight is to state my approval for the plannings to help beautify our area. And so we’re all for it. I’ve been there a long time and I think it would be a great thing for the City and for the area. Thank you.

 

Mayor:     Yes sir. All right, next is Mike Culp

 

•  Mike Culp – Jersey Mike’s – 630-2118 – 1115 State Park Road Greenville .

Tonight I wanted to talk about just the – to express our concern over the formation of the MID and the effect that it could potentially have on business owners, such as myself. I own the Jersey Mike’s Subs on Harrison Bridge Road . That was part of the Fairview Corners Shopping Center . Just to kind of backtrack a little bit. We have been quite disadvantaged I would say in that our facility has been locked away for the last 7 months from the closing of the road that is next to our facility there and having this situation come up where we could be imposed with additional fines or fees that would impact us as a business would be, I think would be devastating to us at this point. We had quite a bit of revenue loss over the last 7 months and a lot of it had to do with the fact that a lot of our customers simply couldn’t get to us. I think I share the same sentiment as a lot of business owners that are here tonight. One of the things that I had understood was that notification to us as the lessees of these businesses were not notified, simply because the property owners were. And I think from our standpoint, you know the property owners are the ones that “pay for” these types of things, but those costs are passed on. If you look at most of the businesses that are along there, I would imagine that most of their leases include payment of taxes, and most of the owners that are in those don’t even live in this area. And so you have a situation where I think some comments were made about letting the developers pay for the development of this area. Well, in our particular case, the developer was – had built out and has been gone for 3 years and so I think really the time for those types of impositions of the additional tax would be at the point the developer is coming in and building their facilities and not for the people that are trying to make their small business run. So, not that I’m totally against what the MID would bring to us but you know maybe looking at a phased approach or something that would not be as taxing against the business owners that are in that area. And so, you know from our standpoint, and keep in mind, we have been recently notified, I think that many of the business owners here tonight have not been at previous meetings simply because we didn’t know. It’s not something that unless you were directly affected by the events that happened over the last few weeks, you wouldn’t know. I think that George Curtis, that spoke at the 10 th meeting had put some comments forth that, and I won’t repeat them here, because he spoke pretty eloquently in terms of putting out how most of the business owners feel, but making sure that we understand what this means to us overall and how this would impact us financially. And really what is the meat of the matter, what problem are we really trying to solve. Is the MID an answer to a question nobody’s asking, and if it is what problem are we really trying to solve. Is it really a sewer issue we’re trying to solve. If it is has anybody done a study to see what the flow rate is. From what I understand we’re getting conflicting numbers from several different parties about really whether the sewer is overtaxed or if it isn’t overtaxed and so I think it’s incumbent upon us as a whole to find out the information. The true information and make sure that we’re doing the things that really doesn’t affect one segment in this case, the lessees of these businesses. So, that’s all I really have to say tonight. Thank you for the time.

 

Mayor:     Okay, thank you very much. All right, next is Mike Newman.

 

•  Mike Newman – 222 Hunters Woods Drive , Simpsonville.

Mayor and Council I appreciate the opportunity to speak again regarding the Hunters Woods sewer line. And I don’t believe we need to go back over all of the previous information because I think what we all really want to do is arrive at an equitable solution to the problem. I do want to point out again, however, regarding the most recent engineering information as it relates to the sewer line in question, where the flow meter was placed was a line that was a 10” trunk line far down stream from the affected line area. The slope of the affected line area is about ½ of a percent. The slope of the 10” line where the metering was done was an inch and a half. So again, I think we have some conflicting data as to capacity vs. flow. And I would also like to note that during this past 12 months there has been no other sanitary sewer overflows except on the Hunters Woods line, to the best of my knowledge. The Hunters Woods line currently carries an average flow of about 150,000 gallons. Peak flow is around 330,000 gallons and those are actual flow numbers that I think Public Works can verify and have not had any kind of formula for capacity applied to them at all. And I think at this point the issue is not capacity. Because capacity as we all can agree is a relative number, depending on what day the flow is measured. I think the issue is just simply the enormous amount of commercial flow that is coming into that 8” line on such a flat slope that it’s experienced those 3 back-ups in 4 residences, and 1 residence twice in 3 months. Which I think is further verification that the issue is not capacity but the enormous amount of flow. The solution to me I think is obvious. The MID for a couple of reasons. Number 1 it’s going to provide a dedicated commercial line for the commercial property and the business owners and I think will enhance the commercial property owners value of that property. Second the further improvements, the enhancements, the landscaping, whatever else is a part of the project, making that area more pedestrian friendly, pedestrian activity, I believe will establish a character and identity to that area all its own and could be a proto-type. I think it would increase the consumer traffic there for the businesses. I think that would make the business owners a lot happier. I think it would increase tenability for the commercial property owners, which in turn is going to make them more happy. And I’d like to share a rendering, and I can pass that over, of a study done by LDR, Strategies for the Future of what they envisioned, provided to you back then of what Fairview Road would look like. I’m sure you at least would remember. And it certainly is a much different picture than we see sitting up on top of 385. So I would encourage you to support a MID and thank you.

 

Mayor:     Thank you. All right, now we’ll go to the sign-up sheets. And these folks will be given 2 minutes. And first is Steve Hoover. And I’ll remind you to state your address for the record and then your time will begin.

 

•  Steve Hoover – 4 Parkins Lake Road in Greenville .

I could probably talk for a while. I sold Dr. Lebedovych his building on Fairview Road . And I’m going on my third year out there developing those roads and obtaining a building permit from the City of Simpsonville . Building shell buildings and working after start of construction, working through some sewer issues. Started construction working with the sanitary sewer district and they told me I could not tap into the sewer after I had already started construction. They put together a couple of deals to try and make it work out where I could tie into the district. Once I got all my information together to make this deal work the rug got pulled out from under me and it never came to fruition. I sat through study after study, internal studies from Simpsonville and third party study which finally after months of waiting to hear they announced that there is extra capacity on that line. I signed up to approve it. I’ve got letters from Simpsonville. I’ve got a letter from Western Carolina , approving flow for those two buildings. I sold to Dr. Lebedovych based on those two letters. And now he’s having trouble getting his permits for sewer problems. I’ve been through the wringer here for about the third year as I said and it needs to stop. It’s been dragging on too long, I’ve been working with Simpsonville trying to make this thing work out and somethings got to happen. That’s all I’ve got to say.

 

Mayor:     Thank you sir. All right, next is William Cole

 

•  William Cole – Pastor of the Bible Baptist Church on Harrison Bridge Road .

Mr. Mayor and Council, I’m sensitive to the sewer issue. It sounds like we certainly need this thing but I guess it comes down to who’s to pay for it and it sounds like we need it I just don’t think we need to pay for it. So since I’m used to communicating in sermon I’ll give you a 1 minute 3 point sermon on I can’t believe you expect us to pay for this sewer line. Number 1, we have a very large and very adequate septic tank system and we’re not on this sewer line, but I understand that you expect us to pay as a church for this MID and so we have a very good septic tank and we don’t use the sewer and for that one reason, I can’t believe you expect us to pay for this sewer line. Number 2, we still have loose dirt and a gapping hole through our tree line from this last sewer line going across our property, which we really didn’t want and we were told then that that was supposed to ease the over-crowded sewer conditions. And so we have that sewer line going across and so now I guess that’s not going to help. So again, I can’t believe you expect us to pay for the sewer line. But then thirdly, being a tax-exempt, non-profit Church ministry and historically and traditionally Churches have not been imposed with these fees since we contribute morally, spiritually and for that reason I can’t believe you expect us to pay for the sewer line. And with that I’ll pronounce the benediction. Thank you.

 

Mayor:     Thank you. I feel like I ought to have an alter call. But we won’t – we’ll move on. Next is Laura Tampkin.

 

•  Laura Tampkin - Spinx Company, Spinx Investments and Inigma.

I work for all three. I’m property manager for Inigma. I work for Stewart Spinx at the Spinx Company and Steve Spinx is part of Spinx Investments.

 

Mayor:     And your address is?

 

Ms. Tampkin:   1414 E. Washington St. Greenville . I came here not really knowing what this is all about. They kind of pushed me here since he couldn’t be here. And in reading the information that we got, there was some beautification things in here and now I’m hearing some sewer things that I didn’t know were some problems. Basically what Spinx and Spinx Investments and what our position is is that any cost that we’re having to bear to help with this is not worth what we’re getting and I think a lot of it – they’re thinking the beautification process, the trees, the plantings and all – the costs just don’t add up to the benefit. And that’s really it in a nutshell for us. Thank you.

 

Mayor:     All right thank you. All right, next is Steve Stewart

 

•  Steve Stewart – my home address is 406 Bradley Court, Greenville, SC

I’m the owner of the property of Stewart Park over here off of Ray Talley Court . I developed this property in late ’99 and out of that acreage and started developing it in the year 2000 and completed in 2001 of 19 acres there. From late ’99 the first thing I heard from all the engineers and everybody and builders I heard from was be careful of the sewer lines down there in Simpsonville because they’ll kill you. And that was the discussion then and as soon as I bought the property it was a moratorium for the year 2000 where I couldn’t do anything at all with the property. So I couldn’t generate any revenue from it. I got into the property on a 1031 tax exchange and fortunately had a pretty good sum of money I put in there I’d taken from Pheister Road over in Greenville. But in the 5 ½ years I’ve been here I’ve had no real escalation of the money I’ve put into this property. Just today I received my tax bills for the property, and the property I sill own over there I haven’t sold 4 unimproved lots. No revenue generated off of unimproved lots so just on those 4 lots my Simpsonville, my tax bill for the lots is $8,700 and Simpsonville has ear marked $1,600 of that. Additionally I have a lot there that’s marked S-1 that has an office building on it and the property tax on that building is $10,414 and $1,865 is earmarked for Simpsonville. So I’ve been here 5 ½ years and in the meantime I’ve paid $155,000 in property taxes to the County of which about $35,000 went to Simpsonville. I’m telling you all this because I’m going into this like the Reverend here that when I went into my property I had to put in my own sewer lines and spent $36,000 on my own sewer line that goes down through my property and another $190,000 in improvements and I’m the corporation, it’s me. I’m the President, Vice-President, Secretary so there’s a place on the corporation – it’s like there’s a big corporation you can go get in their pockets and that’s what I see going here and let’s just go get the businesses. The businesses bring in the income and the tax base for this area and all. This is an area problem. It’s not a Fairview Road problem or anybody within a mile of Fairview Road , or anybody that lives in Hunters Road or anybody that lives in Martin’s Grove or anybody further out Fairview Road or this side of the interstate so it should be an assessment on everybody if you’re going to do that. This assessment fee is actually more than what my property taxes are allotted for Simpsonville each year. So I can’t understand that either. I’ve spent over $200,000 some dollars out here to put my own sewer line and you’re asking me to help this sewer line that I was warned about in 1999. It’s on-going and they never have fixed the problem and it’s just ridiculous that it’s gotten this far and all. Let’s see if I got everything. But I think it’s something that needs to be corrected obviously, but beautification is fine and that’s one thing but take a look at Woodruff Road and building over in that direction – there’s no sidewalks – and I know it’s not beautiful but Fairview Road is a freeway just like Woodruff Road. It’s not going to be beautiful and they put sidewalks to sections of Woodruff Road and you may see a few people a day walk up and down these $30,000 worth of sidewalks they put in there. I just can’t understand the thinking of the whole process. That’s a business district, it’s not a beautification and it’s not a park. Downtown Simpsonville is - now if you want to beautify it and all that. Thank you.

 

Mayor:     Thank you. All right next is Kevin and Glenda Feamster.

 

•  Kevin and Glenda Feamster -

I know it’s been said earlier on that there is no small mom and pop businesses around here.

 

Mayor:     Excuse me your address please

 

Ms. Feamster:   507 Riverwalk Drive , Simpsonville.

 

Mayor:     All right, now your time begins, go ahead

 

Ms. Feamster:   We own property on Ray E. Talley Court and I wanted to tell the Jersey Mikes and all the other business owners that we are a mom and pop shop in a big environment and I know there are some really large corporations here, but we’ve been saddled with taxes. When we first initially built our building we actually went through and there had to be a budget set aside for beautification for our property, established by the Simpsonville Council. We’ve had that occur, we’ve had taxes that have doubled over the past year, and we’ve even had roll back of taxes, and we’re being saddled with taxes, so much so that our business is in jeopardy. And I want to pass this down to my children. I don’t want to be here sitting around with somebody deciding oh okay it’s good to pass on another taxation to our business and I don’t want to ramble on and on but I don’t see any derived benefits since I’ve been on Ray Talley Court. I have not seen anyone come with a sidewalk down my lane after all the taxes that I’ve put into this particular business and I’m here to say that you really need to look at who’s benefiting from this. I know some of these may even be my customers and so forth but we’ve got to look at where is the reserves. Where are the reserves for a sewer line. You knew about the growth, where are the reserves. Do you not have a contingency reserve plan set aside for growth in this area. I mean we’re paying the taxes so where are the reserves that you can use.

 

Mayor:     Thank you. All right, next is George Curtis.

 

•  George Curtis – I live at 1500 Brentwood Way . Simpsonville

I have spoke opposing the MID in the past. I continue to oppose the MID. I wanted to – I don’t really have a prepared statement, I came here tonight to go over some of the issues and try to bring some of this together. I understand that there is a lot that’s been pulled together in this MID. One of those things is the sewer improvement. We’re looking at between one-half and a third of the cost or the money that the MID would generate, being used for sewer situation. I’m not sure how ethical or how proper it is that businesses that don’t even tap onto that sewer line would be included in a MID that is going to create a lift station or a mini-sewer treatment plant. But I’m sure that Council will look into that and follow the law when it comes to that. But if this MID is such a great idea, then why is it limited to businesses out off of Fairview Road, Grandview Drive, Harrison Bridge Road, why not extend it down Main Street. I know there’s business owners here, there’s business owners on Council who have businesses on Main Street . I don’t see the rush to move this MID down Main Street . I think the council understands that there is – there’s certainly some advantages to things they’re proposing, but I think the disadvantages for outweigh the advantages. I believe it is the wrong thing to do to put trees or plants in the middle of major thoroughfares such as Fairview Road . Even though the businesses may pay for the installation of those trees and plants the City is ultimately going to pay for their maintenance. That means every citizen of Simpsonville is going to pay for their maintenance. If we have trouble maintaining the systems that we currently we have, do we really need to be installing new things they’re going to have to – leaves that are going to have to be picked up, branches that have to be trimmed. It sounds good, it’s a nice sound bite to say growth should pay for growth – and if that’s what was going on I’d probably agree with it – I do not believe that’s what’s happening here. I think that it’s just a nice sound bite but it does not represent what’s happening. I wanted to bring it to the council’s attention that there’s a group of us who are circulating a petition – we have had good response so far, as far as people supporting not having a MID. The people of Simpsonville are intelligent people and when you present them with the facts most of them that I’ve encountered do not improve this improvement district. This is not going to go away. I’m here. I’m going to be here. I live in Simpsonville, I have a lot invested here, and I do not believe that this is good for Simpsonville. I know it’s not good for Fairview Road . Thank you very much.

 

Mayor:     Thank you. Okay, and last is Wayna Guirl

 

•  Wayna Guirl – 210 Hunters Woods Drive , Simpsonville

What I wanted to say is that 22 years ago when we moved in our home, just to remind everyone it was kind of a country road out there. The only business that was on Fairview Road at that time was Waffle House. That was it. I don’t think Mr. Ralph Hendricks ever anticipated all the business and how popular our area would become when he put in our little 8” residential line. Within the last year we’ve had 5 homes ruined by sewer. There’s one home I don’t think has received a cent from the City and lost about $60,000 on the sale of their house. Their insurance I think paid some the first time but the second time it happened they just said they would not be willing to pay again. I guess I want to just give you a list of some of the businesses that are on our residential line. Nations Bank, Wendys, Hunters Place Apartments, The Arbors Apartments, The Spinx Gas Station and Car Wash, The Public Shopping Center and the restaurants there, MoJo’s, Hancock Fabrics, Tire Kingdom, Auto X Car Wash, Wal-Mart, Days Inn, Comfort Inn, Merck’s Barber Shop Shopping Center, the Kohl’s Shopping Center, I think there’s a couple of restaurants there, Sherwin Williams, the Prudential Building, and I think some of those businesses have not been able to tap on to the sewer. This happened several years ago so this is nothing new. First Citizens Bank, Wachovia Bank, Chik-Fil-A, Burger King, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Zaxby’s, Belks, US Post Office, O’Charley’s, Mastermark Dry Cleaners, The Classy Kids Day Care, Baskin Robbins, the Hampton Inn, the Holiday Inn, Ryan’s Steakhouse, Applebees, Dragon Den, Mimi’s Chinese, Ruby Tuesdays, Calvary Baptist Church, Walgreens, Eckerd’s, and Brusters, to name a few. My question to you, I mean I was on the Planning Commission for 6 years, we preached, tried to get impact fees in, developers have even told the Planning Commission they’re willing to pay the impact fees, we still do not have any impact fees, which would help with this problem, I feel the Planning Commission, and with all these sewer overflows we’ve been warning the City for a long time. Yet, just last year you voted to buy an old abandoned elementary school and paid half a million dollars for it. I’ve been coming up here for many many years and I was here when Wal-Mart came into the City and they agreed to build a road to Wal-Mart from our neighborhood street that’s going to cut through now it does cut through. And at the time the negotiation was that the City would take over the road. And I thought to myself oh boy, the City has just not done a good job with infrastructure and keeping up this kind of thing. So look at the road now, I ride down the road now, I’ve got to pull into the Tire Kingdom to get my tires fixed so I can get to Wal-Mart an 1/8 of a mile away. The road is in shambles. I don’t understand that. I don’t understand where all the money from all the taxes from these good people – where as it gone. Where has all our money from taxes for the last 22 years gone and how did we get to this point in the first place. Thank you.

 

Mayor:     All right, thank you all for your comments and now is the time for Council to have comments.

 

COUNCIL COMMENTS:

Mayor:     So I’ll recognize anyone that wants to speak. Mr. Gecy

 

Mr. Gecy:   Well first of all the hot button, I forget who said it first, but I guess I’ll give credit to Steve Stewart in mentioning reserves. I’ve been harping on the idea of not having a reserve pot of money for a long time. And sadly we don’t have a reserve amount of money. And this issue will not go away. And this whole issue will not go away. These people are going to come back, but we have a responsibility here and this is the first dialogue we’re opening this up with. We have got to do something about putting money aside so that we can handle these things in the future. But we’re taxed now with how are we going to handle a major problem that has festered and bubbled into our homes because we didn’t have money to build infrastructure as we were growing. Growing by leaps and bounds. All those taps that Wayna mentioned, Ms. Guirl, mentioned, when they applied for a sewer letter, somebody in the City had to give them permission each time they tied into that line. Each time. And I know toward the end when a major restaurant applied for service, our folks, our Public Works Department told them no. They knew that we were having a problem, but it still got tied into the sewer line and prior to that businesses tied into the sewer line without even asking us. They were told that there was sewer capacity to tie in. This is the kind of history that we’re having to try to build out from under right now. But having said that and having laid the blame in the past on the situation where we are now, we have got to find the money to do this. The MID is a suggestion. We talked about that at the beginning and we’re going to continue to debate that. But if the MID never happens, we’ve got to find the money to fix this sewer, because the fact that the sewer is the issue, dictates that we have to find the money. We’re going to stand up here tonight and not talk as much today or in the future about if we do the MID or not, but we’re sure going to discuss and agree that we have a problem with the sewer line in Hunters Woods and we’re going to agree on that and we’re going to stand fighting just like you said, we’re going to keep coming back and coming back. But there’s a sewer issue that we have to handle. Now if it’s through a MID or through a bond or spending sewer money that we already receive from that $21 a quarter, but the idea that we’ve got a sewer issue has got to be tantamount, so we will take on that in later discussion. If I can continue on another subject.

 

The back flow preventers that we agreed, and obviously we know there’s a problem, because we want to help these people from further problems on a line, that we have plenty of capacity so why do we need back flow preventers. Well we’re doing that so they don’t have another problem right away. The quote and Mr. Hawes you help me with this, we agreed on the list that I got from you about who would qualify for back flow preventers, the phrase came out in the minutes as those on the line who were equal or below, well it can’t be below the line, or equal or level to a sewer line, did that mean anyone else in the Hunters Woods area, other than Hunters Woods Drive. The question is some other people think they are.

 

Mr. Hawes:   I think that’s a question for council as to what their intent was when they authorized that because I was not part of that conversation beyond saying that we would do that – whatever council needed to do.

 

Mr. Gecy:   Mr. Mayor can you help with that

 

Mayor:     I can, I think I’m the one that recommended that and I believe I said, I haven’t read the minutes, but my intention was that area right there that was affected by this last back-up. In other words those few houses along there that were positioned in such a relationship to that line that the potential was there to have this problem again before we got all this worked out. So that was the intention of my comment.

 

Mr. Gecy:   Okay, well then let me address directly Ms. Featherston. That – the idea of your house being at least equal to the line is that the way you read the suggestion that in fact your house would qualify as well for that. What gave you that impression.

 

Ms. Featherston:   I was here that day and I thought I heard that all homes that were affected by the sewer line that were at street level or below.

 

Mr. Gecy:   And that’s what I understood you to believe as well.

 

Ms. Featherston:   I’m not at the front of the subdivision but I am at street level and they said if you had back-up I would not have a catastrophic back flow but the houses at the front, but I would only have about 500 gallons of sewage flow. But I don’t know – so he said I would have a problem if there was a back flow and we have had sewage back-up in our house. I’ve stood in my shower with the sewage coming up.

 

Mr. Gecy:   Well that’s the question that was brought to my mind, that there are other people

 

Mayor:   If it’s on that line, if it’s on that section 11 of that basin over there which is that line that’s in question down there that was my intention. But then council supported it so what was you all’s intention.

 

Ms. Lawrence:   My intention was that I believe there was 13 houses that were on that street that would qualify.

 

Mr. Hawes:   I think what we ended – if I could interject – because I know I sent this to Mr. Gecy – I believe we ended up sending 12 because one already had a back flow preventer on it.

 

Ms. Lawrence:     Okay, well that’s the 13 that I originally thought we had.

 

Mr. Hawes:   That’s correct and that’s what Public Works took from the direction of council and my direction after that meeting.

 

Mr. Gecy:   And on that line then on those houses are on Hunters Woods Drive .

 

Ms. Lawrence:     Yeah

 

Mr. Gecy:   That goes all the way to where it turns a 90 degrees to Ms. Morlan’s house.

 

Mr. Hawes:   I think that’s right. I think the rest of them are above the level.

 

Mr. Gecy:   The way the sewer line – of course the sewer line on Foxhound is not as much capacity if you can use that word or volume – what do we call that – but if it is in a risk area, I mean I want her to feel comfortable to, I mean everybody in Hunters Woods is a little gun shy even us who live in houses that are on a hill feel a little funny now. We just don’t know but

 

Mayor:     Excuse me for interrupting but where is she located

 

Mr. Gecy:   She’s on Foxhound Road

 

Mayor:     Which is

 

Mr. Gecy:   Take a left and then over it starts back down the hill to the backside where it goes on down the hill and takes the sewer on down the back way.

 

Mayor:     So she’s just up above you on the hill

 

Mr. Gecy:   Right, back a little further back. My sewer flows down into the Hunters Hill Drive and her’s goes’ back the other way to the Willow Branch side. It probably doesn’t have the capacity or the volume of flow of the gallons of water going through that line, but I would think having a home that our City Staff would agree is on a level that a back-up could cause a problem, it would be worth an investment for piece of mind for a neighbor. I don’t know how many more people might feel that way but I would be willing to endorse that idea to give her the piece of mind. What is the cost of the back flow preventers – do we have an estimate.

 

Mr. Hawes:   We had the plumber prepare an estimate – I’m not positive that we have a definitive total right now as to what a per house cost would be. Joe may be able to address that because he’s been dealing directly with it.

 

Mayor:     Joe have you gotten any quotes on the back flow preventers yet.

 

Mr. Carter:   Yes sir, they run between $300-$400 per house.

 

Mayor:     Well that’s more than I was told. I heard they were about $200 installed. You must have got a cheap one. We use nothing but the best.

 

Mr. Gecy:   Anyway, I would suggest that if we have a concerned neighbor, at least some of our staff has agreed she’s at risk, to include her in the back-flow preventer program. Is there any support on council for that.

 

Mr. Larson:   Are there any others besides the 13 besides her that feel like they should be included – do you know.

 

Mr. Gecy:   I don’t know of any more – I don’t know of any others.

 

Mr. Larson:   So right now that would make 14.

 

Ms. Lawrence:     13 – one of them already had one.

 

Mr. Hawes:   If I could suggest perhaps staff take a look at the situation and evaluate and get back to council at the next meeting. Because I don’t believe anything is going to be installed between now and the next meeting any way because they’re still working out with the plumber exactly what his rate is.

 

Mayor:     Gosh, how long does it take him to figure out a rate.

 

Mr. Hawes:   Apparently quite a while. I think what he has to do

 

Mayor:     I’ve dealt with some plumbers before and he didn’t hesitate to give me a rate.

 

Mr. Hawes:   From what I understand, he’s checking with every individual situation and try to average out a rate amongst them all.

 

Mayor:     Okay

 

Mr. Gecy:   And one other comment if I could. Mr. Stewart your comment on the 1999 sewer issue, that bothers me that that was an issue for you in 1999 and I’ve been living here since before that, not as long as Ms. Guirl has, but I have been here in Hunters Woods for about 7 years and I know that nothing has been done with that sewer line since 1999, so that throws it back to us again, if there was a problem back then and all these businesses that we heard the repetitious description of all the restaurants and businesses that have tied into that line since then, if we had a problem then we sure have a flow problem now. I’m not really sure what to call it but I’m not going to get away and let you guys say the capacity is okay. We’re going to use another word. The flow is too much. And the last question I’d like to ask and I know I’m taking up a lot of time, Mr. Mayor, I’d like to ask Mr. Carter if he could maybe come up – if you want to come up I promise I just need a quick answer. No I need for you to come up please. Where’s our little portable microphone there. Just try to answer the question. Just try and identify this for laymen’s terms, because we do have conflicting reports. How much – when you test the line – when you put your camera into a sewer line, what’s the height that the water has to be below that camera to give you a good visual view of that line. I mean it’s as high as your camera.

 

Mr. Carter:   Well it’s got different sets of wheels on it where you adjust the wheels according to the size of pipe. But it usually runs half – we like to keep half or above – if the pipe gets over half full then your camera will go under water.

 

Mr. Gecy:   But how high is the camera – about half of the pipe

 

Mr. Carter:   Yeah, usually.

 

Mr. Gecy:   Okay. At 9:30 on a Wednesday morning his crew went to T.V. the line a few days after the incident, checking as they did all the lines. The line was so full of water that the camera could not video the line. So if the camera was half as high as the line the water was above that line. They had to pump the line out to try to suck all the fluid out so they could t.v. the line and it filled up their vacuum truck there was so much volume they couldn’t do it that day. They had to do it another day. That was at 9:30 on a Wednesday morning. I don’t know if you consider that peak flow but that blew me away. I don’t know what was happening at 9:30 Wednesday morning. All the restaurants were washing dishes or something. I don’t know where that was coming from. You figure people were at work, they weren’t home taking showers and flushing toilets and the restaurants were thin between breakfast and lunch. I don’t know what that line – and Mr. Mayor when I said that pipe – after they cleaned that stoppage out and they opened that line back up there was a flood going through there and that was at 9:00 on a Friday night, we have a flow volume problem on that 8 inch line that has one major line that comes down from Kentucky Fried Chicken area, one major line that comes from Wal-Mart and one major line that comes from the restaurants and Kohl’s. Three converge at Dennis Lockhart’s house. And that’s where it all backed up. And we all got to know that problem and I think we’ve got to figure out that we’ve got a problem. We’ve got to admit we’ve got that problem. I don’t want to believe that we’re at 17% capacity. I don’t even know where that comes from and I know it came from a 10” line down at the end of the line. But if we had a problem in 1999 to show that your staff could not even t.v. that line, that morning, we have a volume flow problem somewhere. Would you agree to that Mr. Carter.

 

Mr. Carter:   That the line had a lot of flow in it yes sir. An 8” line, depending on the grade is supposed to be designed to carry half a million gallons, 500,000. SO when you put 2-300 in it then you are over half full. But it’s designed to carry a half million. Depending on the grade. You get up to a steeper grade and it can carry 700,000 or more.

There in front of those houses it’s got a slow slope on it about ½ percent so right in front of your houses. So on the slowest grade you’d get about a half million – designed to carry about half million gallons.

 

Mr. Gecy: Here’s the caveat – you know the flow will go through an 8 inch line and if 70% they say is comfortable as capacity – whatever it is – it’ll flow through there at a pretty good rate out the other side. But flowing half and more than half full as it was that morning that you tried to t.v. it at 60-70% we know there are going to be back ups occasionally, accidents happen. There’s no way you’re staff could get there to stop thousands of gallons from going into somebody’s house that that kind of flow on an 8 inch line. That’s what I’m saying. That’s the fear that we have in Hunters Woods, and I’m preaching to the choir, pardon the pun but I think you understand and I hope you’ll support the idea that we definitely have to do something to this line. Would you agree.

 

Mr. Carter:   It stands to reason that the more that comes through the faster the back-up. The more volume you’ve got on it the faster it’s going to back up in the houses when it does have a back-up.

 

Mr. Gecy:   And that’s exactly what happened. There was a rapid flow and it blocked up – before our staff could get there and unblock it and if Mr. Demares hadn’t opened his clean out valve there’d be 3 feet of sewage in those houses. Anyway, I appreciate that. I just wanted to verify that camera issue and that was a solid example of a lot of flow in this line. Okay, thank you very much. I’m winded thank you.

 

Mayor:     Thank you. Rest up. There will be more opportunity. Ms. Lawrence

 

Ms. Lawrence:   Thank you Mr. Mayor, well unfortunately, to the business owners I know this is no consultation but we should have planned better. The sewer was put in many years ago, strictly for Hunters Woods. You know as the businesses started building, which I’m sure nobody realized how they were going to do, just one more business kept getting put on the line until finally we’ve got like I think 330,000 gallons going in there a day. Unfortunately, we have Mr. Lebedovych who’s livelihood, like you alls is you know related to this. He’s waiting on some more flow to be let up. With the MID, even though I realize you don’t like it, if you take everything out of the equation, except for just rerouting the sewer, you could reroute the sewer and move all the flow from the Arbors Apartments over to another line, giving Mr. Hoover enough flow to build out. There are just several different options. We don’t know what to do. I know nobody likes to pay taxes, and I certainly do know that even though we said to property owners we know it’s going to be passed on to you as additional rent and we know that you’re going to pass it on to us – we’re going to pay a little bit more in the price of goods we buy – we realize that – or I realize it – it’s just a bad situation that we have let get entirely out of hand. It’s not I’m convinced a capacity issue, it is a quantity in one time and it’s also a quality issue. What we’re finding in the Hunters Woods sewer line with these back ups is a lot of the brown paper towels like you would use in a business, a lot of grease, that maybe hasn’t got caught in grease traps, because people aren’t mindful to cleaning them out like they should. It doesn’t appear to be the type of things that would come from a residence and so that’s why we were aiming this more at the business owners. But also on a different note we mentioned back flow preventers and I do realize (TAPE CHANGED SIDES)

 

Ms. Lawrence:     I think this is something that every residence that’s built ought to have a sewer back flow preventer. Now not an irrigation one. I know people get it mixed up. A sewer back flow preventer. We can do better than the code. But this would at least protect other parts of the City. It’s too late to you know protect the damage that’s been done already. But I just think council should really look at making that part of the code.

 

Mayor:     Well I agree and that was part of my suggestion that night. But I believe Mr. Building Codes Enforcement Officer/Inspector person back there that they are required now in the new code. (Can’t understand what is being said).

 

Ms. Lawrence:     A back what – I’m sorry

 

Mayor:     He’s making fun because I didn’t know the right terminology.

 

Ms. Lawrence:     Well I didn’t know it either so

 

Mayor:     Back water preventer

 

Ms. Lawrence:     Well what it does is it stops the mess from getting in your house and I think and it would stop it from getting in businesses. Good heavens what if all that mess had backed up in O’Charley’s or somewhere. Because it started way down there. And that’s smart. I have one on my house but I really think that’s something that ought to be in our own personal code. And then on a lighter note, if I might say one more thing

 

Mayor:     You have the floor you just go on until I get tired of listening to you.

 

Ms. Lawrence:     I don’t know how many of our constituents know we’re working with ferrel cats, but we have found a whole Ferrell cat colony over next to Simpsonville Elementary and we’re in the process of cleaning that out and that’s a private organization, it’s just one that I’m affiliated with. That’s it.

 

Mayor:     Oh that’s all – or you found the colony

 

Ms. Lawrence:     We found the colony and we’re going to catch them all and spay and neuter them and we’re going to relocate them out of the City.

 

Mayor:     That’s a wonderful thing. All right anyone else. Mr. Zitricki

 

Mr. Zitricki:   Thanks Mr. Mayor. I too recognize a problem in the Hunters Woods area with the low capacity or however we’re going to call this issue. It hasn’t just cropped up. It’s been going on for years, and something has to be done about this and we need to act on it either by a MID or some other means to make sure we clean this up and it won’t happen again in Hunters Woods or other parts of the City. I won’t beat this to death I know we’ll bring it up again in a little bit. I have a couple other comments to move on to. For Mr. Hawes, we discussed at our last meeting a couple issues with the roadways, Fairview Road we talked about a concrete divider to prevent left turns onto the northbound 385. How is that progressing. You said once we opened up Harrison Bridge Road you would pursue that.

 

Mr. Hawes:   That’s correct, we are pursuing that. We are looking at early to mid-November for the installation of that. We don’t want to get into the Christmas shopping season and be blocking lanes of traffic so we’re looking to do that as quickly after Halloween as possible, early November.

 

Mr. Zitricki:   Before Thanksgiving

 

Mr. Hawes:   That’s the intent.

 

Mr. Zitricki:   That would be good. And the second thing was at Powderhorn Road and Main Street we talked about putting some lane lines in there for loading. How is that progressing.

 

Mr. Hawes:   Yes, it should be done by the end of this week. It would have been done at the end of last week but we had rain Thursday and Friday and they’re looking to get out there. I know Joe may be able to say what the time frame. – End of the week.

 

Mr. Zitricki:   Thank you.

 

Mayor:     Okay, thank you Mr. Zitricki. Anyone else.

 

Mr. Larson:   Just a question. If there’s any other residents in Hunters Woods that feel like they should be evaluated for the back water flow valve, is that right, should they contact Mr. Hawes or Public Works, if they feel like they’re not sure their house is at or even.

 

Mr. Hawes:   It would probably be more direct if they contact Public Works because they can get right on the analysis. If they call me I’m just going to call Public Works.

 

Mr., Larson:   Okay

 

Mayor:     Okay, anyone else that hasn’t spoken already. Mr. Garrett

 

Mr. Garrett:   On grease traps – the one that was brought in here that night was about 16x16 if it was that big I guess. The only grease traps I’m familiar with are the one that the Army had behind mess halls that were rather large. I don’t understand how that can accommodate the grease from a restaurant. Can somebody explain that to me.

 

Mayor:     Well I’m glad you brought that up. The trap that was before us that night was one of the under sink grease traps. Most of those establishments – and we’re trying to establish that and I hope we’re going to get a report on that in a little while. Most of those establishments out through there – food handling establishments have grease pits which are 1,000 gallon, 1,500 gallon – I’m looking at some of these folks – they’re in the ground out there that really trap the bulk of the grease. Am I correct

 

Mr. Hawes:   Just to clarify on the requirements according to international building codes that was adopted by the City of Simpsonville a couple of years ago, for any new resident built since these codes were adopted, you must provide 20 gallons capacity for your grease pit per seat in the restaurant. So if you have 50 seats that’s 1,000 gallon grease pit, if you have 150 seats that’s a 3,000 gallon grease pit, and that’s required by code.

 

Mayor:     Boy that tells you how much lard is in our food doesn’t it. 20 gallons per seat.

 

Mr. Larson:   Is there a cleaning or a maintenance schedule that is required once those are installed and who’s responsible for action on that

 

Mr. Hawes:   DHEC actually monitors the cleaning of the grease pits. When we monitor the condition of the sewers and if we see an inordinate amount of grease in a location it’s incumbent upon us and we have in fact had DHEC inspectors to site the restaurant or to check to see if a citation is warranted with regard to clean-out of the grease pits.

 

Mayor:     Okay, everybody’s had the opportunity to speak – now does anybody want to respeak. Okay, Mr. Gecy

 

Mr. Gecy:   I just want to – Mr. Hawes can you give us a brief scenario to the best you know of what damage has been reported to you from these three houses. Have you been kept up with what’s going on.

 

Mr. Hawes:   Yeah, I can give you a brief scenario of what I know about it. Absolutely. First of all I observed it first hand that evening. Saw what was occurring in the houses, went in on the request of the property owner, actually into the house. There was significant damage. Certainly one house I would say beyond the other two. I would say that Mr. Lockhart’s was certainly the more damaged of the three, or the most damaged of the three. With regard to the Dearmas’ they said that night they felt they had cleaned up most of it because they took the clean-out plug out and whatever got in the house they felt they had mostly cleaned it up. I believe they’re back in their house now. Not staying in the City provided hotel. And the Balls from what I understand are back in their house as well now. A phone call to that location today as a matter of fact found the lady at home. So you know without the specifics on how much and where and you know exactly per household, I would say the middle of the three which was the Lockhart’s house received the most damage.

 

Mr. Gecy:     Is there progress on the relationship between an entity that’s going to help them recover these losses.

 

Mr. Hawes:   There is absolutely progress on the front with regard to the City’s insurance company and any other insurance companies that are involved in the effort.

 

Mr. Gecy:   Okay, just quickly on Bonwood paving. Bonwood paving, I mean we’re getting ready – it was chilly last night and that means it’s too cold to pave. Are we going to get that paved before the holiday.

 

Mr. Hawes:   Which Holiday

 

Mr. Gecy:   Halloween

 

Mr. Hawes:   Okay, I just wanted to make sure we were speaking of the same thing. I can’t say definitively. I can tell you that we know that the bids have been let on the project by the water company. Remember this is not a City project, this is a water company project. This is a City of Greenville Water System project, and we have been constantly in touch with them to make sure the bids went out. They’ve got a low bid from what I understand and they’ll be mobilizing as quickly as they can is the understanding that we have. Ours is one of a number of projects that this construction bid is for, and we’ve asked that we be placed at the highest priority and be done first. So, with that if Joe can clarify, his staff has been dealing with Greenville Water System on this issue since day 1. If he has any clarification as to when he understands beyond that I’d be glad to hear it and I’m sure you all would as well.

 

Mr. Gecy:   And then throwing it back to you again, Ray Talley paving Ray Talley

 

Mr. Hawes:   A different situation altogether. We are doing that in house and we will do what we can – as a matter of fact that’s something that we’re looking to do in early November, but I believe the same crew is now going to be working on Fairview Road to get that median in because that is a high priority project we need to take care of before any holiday season. So basically as soon as the median work is done on Fairview we’ll move right to Ray Talley.

 

Mr. Gecy:   So that’s – what we’re going to do there is really do patches – full patch that kind of stuff.

 

Mr. Hawes:   Correct, yes sir.

 

Mr. Gecy:   SO that shouldn’t take – that’s not a whole major paving job and it would help a lot.

 

Mr. Hawes:   No the City doesn’t have the ability to do beyond patching. Okay, thank you.

 

Mr. Larson:   One more thing. I just wanted to thank everybody for coming tonight. I think as we sit here listening to the comments I think everyone of us realizes how serious an issue we have facing us and I think it’s very important we get to hear all sides and that everybody gets an opportunity to express their feelings and I think it will help us make our decision. So I appreciate you all coming.

 

Mayor:     Thank you Mr. Larson. Ms. Lawrence

 

Ms. Lawrence:     Thank you Mr. Mayor. For the November election, the issue that’s coming up about the property tax not being allowed to go up more than 15% - if anybody wants any information on that if you would go to the Municipal Associations South Carolina web page it’s MASC – it has a whole lot of information.

 

Mr. Hawes:   It’s .org not .com. Just so if somebody wants to go there.

 

Ms. Lawrence:   I just type MASC and it comes up and you’ll see it starts out this is not the deal – learn more – they did write to all council members and ask them to please let the constituents know to become familiar with that before you vote. Thank you.

 

Mayor:     Okay, anyone else. Well I just want to say one thing. I want to say a couple of things actually. I see hands keep going up out there and it wouldn’t be appropriate for me to recognize you. We’re set up on a system wherein you sign in when you come in and you speak and we’ll argue with you and all that but I don’t recognize people after and I think you can understand that. We’ve got to keep some order. But I saw Mr. Teachey’s hand go up a little while ago, so before he leaves, I wanted to say to Mr. Teachey and to you Pastor Cole, that your situation out there is exactly what State Legislature intended when they established this Municipal Improvement District, that allows us to use something like this for economic development and that is to work with someone developing a property before they get started so that the city, the municipality can work with you in that development, plan the streets, the lighting, whatever and then direct the taxations from your property back to that particular area to pay for it. I don’t believe they intended for it to be done in arrears although I know some have done that, but that wasn’t the original intention. So, regardless however all this turns out it may be something that you all want to pursue latter. I wanted to say that before you left. But please stay and listen to the rest of it.

 

NEW BUSINESS

•  Policy & Procedures Committee Discussion

Mayor:     All right, next on the Agenda, Bob you’ve got the floor again, you’re going to talk about Policy & Procedures Committee discussions. We have just a little cleaning up if I can use that phrase of our ordinance that established a new method to appoint Boards and Committees. We just wanted to make a couple of things clear that was possibly not as clear and that was if someone wanted to apply for a position just so all of you know you have to have a council person recommend you for that position. On the application we had a place where you could put your first choice and second choice and we streamlined that only to accept only the application of the council persons recommendation for one position. So when we recommend a position it would be for only one position. So we’ve eliminated that second and third choices. That created a little problem in the past. What we’re going to do before we close on October 31 st is we’re going to review all the applicants to see if we’ve done our homework and have enough applicant’s for all the positions and that way we can maybe re-think some of the people we’ve recommended and move those around at that time. We want this to be very smooth because it’s been very confusing in the past. There was one other issue that we discussed Ms. Lawrence do you recall what it was.

 

Mr. Hawes:   I can clue you in on that – what was discussed was the movement between one commission to another.

 

Mr. Gecy:   Oh yeah that’s right. Tell you what we decided as a council person recommends a person for a position and they feel they would serve in that position well it’s without question whether that person is already serving on another committee. There was some talk about not moving from one committee to another, but if a council person recommends Mr. So and So to be on the Planning Commission and they’re already on the Board of Zoning – he can be placed into nomination for that and if he is elected then that would simply at the end of the whole procedure leave us with an opening on another committee and we would have to start the process over again. We agreed to recommend to the council as a committee to use that policy and I guess as a resolution or a text amendment as Mr. Al Spain likes to call it to the ordinance, to add that to it if council agrees.

 

Mayor:     I didn’t fully understand that. So are you saying you can’t transfer from one committee to the other.

 

Mr. Gecy:   No we’re saying if the council person wants to recommend somebody – because there was nothing written in it to do it and the committee recommended not to write something into it – so if you felt someone was on the Planning Commission and wanted to move over to the Election Commission that would leave an opening on there if he were elected and council would take into consideration whether you wanted that person to move or not. So council would vote on all of this. But we wanted to leave it open. The recommendation was to leave it open to recommend somebody to move from one or the other.

 

Mayor:     So handled on a case by case basis. Okay.

 

Mr. Gecy:   That’s what the committee recommends.

 

Mayor:     All right, we’ll take that up at the regular meeting then

 

Ms. Lawrence:     Well actually I don’t think it takes a vote because

 

Mr. Hawes:   There’s no change necessary

 

Mayor:     All right, recommendation well taken. All right, is that it.

 

Mr. Gecy:   That’s about it.

 

OLD BUSINESS

•  Discussion of Fairview Basin MID

Mayor:     All right, we’ll move onto the next item on the Agenda and Mr. Hawes this is where you’re going to explain all this about the Municipal Improvement District and everything associated therewith so all of us can understand it. Please don’t leave folks, you’ll probably want to hear some of this.

 

Mr. Hawes:   First of all, I want to explain a little about some of the sewer aspects. I know the sewer is somewhat of an impetus for consideration of the MID and also it is one of the aspects of the district that would be funded by the property owners within that district. I have a power point presentation that can touch a little bit on the history and where we are right now. We’ll try to move through it fairly quickly because I don’t want this to drag but the City looked at the Hunters Woods Basin , selected it for capacity analysis due to the high growth within the basin. We had been receiving requests for flow and as we recognized that these requests were becoming more and more and the fact that we were a Consent Order from EPA with regards to making sure that we have good programs in place to monitor, to plan and so forth, this fell in line with that and this is part of that planning. We began our analysis by determining the direction of flow within the basin and that’s a standard beginning to an analysis. We then determined the slopes of the lines between the manholes. Lines that are below .5% slope are – will certainly have less available capacity than the same size line with a greater slope and that lends itself to a pretty simple understanding there. The analysis indicated there were 5 line segments with a slope of .5% or less in that basin. Flows were determined for each parcel within the basin. When City staff first analyzed this they used SCDHEC minimum waste water load ins. Each new residence or commercial building calculates expected sewer flows. Permitted flows were then assigned to each parcel within the basin. And the flows were traced throughout the system and throughout the entire basin. Total permitted flows for the basin were then calculated. The allowable flows contributed to basin by rainwater – this is what’s called the peaking factor. This is where inflow and infiltration comes into play, were determined by using the Babbit equation, and this is an equation based on the population of the basin, the slope of the line, the width of the line, and the projected flows. It is an industry standard method for determining allowable rainwater inflow and infiltration into a sewer system. I apologize that that’s so hard to read but for whatever reason it sort of fades out. But after consultation with Metropolitan Sewer Subdistrict , staff developed a total permitted flows within the basins in a spreadsheet. They were multiplied by the Babbit equation, compared to design capacity of the lines and from that we began our flow analysis and calculation. After performing the calculations in this initial analysis, and this occurred about February through May of 2005, there were 8 pipe segments that appeared to exceed design capacity. It appeared we had capacity issues, the City decided to consult with professional engineers and we hired Jordan, Jones and Goulding to further the flow analysis. They conducted a flow study to clarify the remaining capacity within the basin and their findings seemed to indicate that permitted flows exceeded the maximum allowed available capacity within the basin. Their study, as well as ours assumed inflow and infiltration levels. We then completed an inflow and infiltration analysis. We were concerned with the possibility of the basin being over capacity. Rainflow, rain water inflow and infiltration adds additional unwanted flows to a sewer system. The City hired Frazier Engineering to determine the actual inflow and infiltration of rainwater into the sewer basin by flow monitoring. This would establish a wet weather peaking factor for the basin as well as establishing annual average, actual average and peak daily flows. Flow monitors were installed at the base of the basin where it connects into Western Carolina ’s line, the last pipe segment of this basin. The monitor collected flow and rainfall information for more than 4 months. The analysis indicated that there was no I&I contribution, thus no peaking factor during wet weather. That’s a statement directly from their report, that says there was no I&I and no peaking factor, so therefore, estimated capacity of 221,000 gallons per day of flow, even if sections of the sewer had minimum slope, there is significant capacity remaining for future flows. That is the information on which we based on our approval of flows in the coming summer months of this year. When I say we, the Public Works, because they analyzed, they had this information. We first looked at actual flows, actual daily flows and daily peak flows that were established by the flow monitoring were inserted into a spread sheet using the methodology of Jordan, Jones and Goulding and these were subtracted from design capacities to determine if there was any excess capacity available per line segment. And, let me go to the next page here, I’m sorry, and this gives the available peak flow capacity in each line. The calculations showed the basin flows do not exceed capacity. In fact these calculations indicate that there is approximately 163,000 gallons per day capacity available in the weakest section, or the section with the lowest slope, and the lowest pipe diameter.

 

So in summary, and this states, additional peak capacity available, it may difficult for you all to read it, but it ranges from 166 in an 8” pipe to over 4 million gallons in a high slope 10” pipe in that basin. So as council has affirmed, there really isn’t a capacity issue here on this line. It’s beyond what we are aware of the volume and the fact that it’s commercially derived.

 

Mayor:     Excuse me for interrupting but you mentioned different line sizes. Isn’t the 8” section just one segment of that line, in that section 11.

 

Mr. Hawes:   Yes, that’s correct there’s an 8” section that goes down Hunters Woods Drive – cuts across the creek and then where the apartment complex line connects in with that 8” line, when the two meet it becomes a 10” line, because it has that additional flow.

 

Mayor:     So everything else in that basin is a 10”

 

Mr. Hawes:   That is correct.

 

Mayor:     Okay, excuse me I just wanted to clarify that – you kept dancing around but you never mentioned…..

 

Mr. Hawes:   That’s okay. This presentation was just to clarify to council and to any interested parties in the audience or reading minutes in the future, as to how the City felt it had a capacity issue and how it dealt with it over the term. We didn’t get into the fact that we did allocate funds and the funds are still there to actually parallel that line and separate commercial flow and we could still do that and that was some action taken November of last year, but we have not furthered that because of concerns from residents.

 

Mayor:     Mr. Gecy

 

Mr. Gecy:   Can you tell us how much rain during a 4 month period when those monitors were in that we actually had.

 

Mr. Hawes:   I don’t have – well I do have it right in front of me. I can tell you pretty quickly. We had a March 20, 2006 rain event of 1.06”, April 22, 2006 of 1.65” and April 27, 2006 of .93”. So there were 3 separate rain fall events in that study. And no measured inflow and infiltration.

 

Mayor:     So if there’s o leakage into the line, if there’s no inflow and infiltration then that’s not going to have any affect on the flow in that line anyway. Whether it’s 1” or 10”.

 

Mr. Hawes:   That is according to the study, that is right. Don’t I see one of the engineers here tonight. If we have any real strong questions we might have to ask him to come up and explain some of this. But excuse me. Go ahead.

 

Mr. Hawes:   Well that’s basically – that was a clarification for council and for interested parties as to where we are and how we got here. There was a statement made by council, or a member of council a few minutes ago about we did nothing on that line for “X” number of years. I think that’s the furthest from the truth. I mean I don’t think that’s actually – we did not upsize it –that’s accurate. But what we have done is studied it and we have identified and put a lot of effort, staff time and consultants and engineers analyzing what problem if any is on that line. And also the City has its standard program of cleaning and that line was cleared in May of this year and it had been cleared on an annual basis basically every year before. So I mean it’s not a neglected line.

 

Mayor:     All right, why don’t you go on and talk to us about the MID then.

 

Mr. Hawes:   Certainly, that was a primer before the MID. What you all have in front of you is a synopsis of some of the improvements to be included in the MID. The sewer is really not mentioned there very strongly, other than the fact that sewer could be part of it because I think we’re pretty clear on what is proposed for the improvements on the sewer. That is a pump station to be located off Hunters Woods Drive that would pump using a force main approximately a mile down Fairview and Grandview . Fairview , Grandview and Davenport to the Western Carolina Line as a direct flow of commercial sewer. Thus taking the commercial flow off of Hunters Woods properties, or off their sewer system. The other points of the study in the MID planning are the costs involved in doing boulevard treatments, street scape improvements, pedestrian improvements, gateways to delineate a sense of place for the Fairview community, all of which would conceivably benefit that unit. It’s something where I would hope we would have some buy-in from the community but State Law does not require that. And City Council did indicate that they would like to further be planning on this at the last meeting and this is a roundtable in a sense for council to please discuss what they have in mind. I know Ms. Lawrence has communicated to me that she would like to see medians all the way down Fairview with breaks only at the stop lights with U-turns allowed. You see that treatment allowed on high-capacity or high volume thoroughfares, particularly in northern areas and in Florida , where you just don’t have cut-across turns. You have everything controlled at a traffic signal, and Fairview could lend itself to that, conceivably, because we have a number of traffic signals and we have a number of ways, particularly on the Home Depot side, since that connectivity was completed of having parallel flow to get to a traffic signal from virtually any parcel on that side of the road. So that’s something that Ms. Lawrence suggested. Basically if you look at the map that’s on the front of the packet, it identifies some treatment zones with certain levels of treatment, boulevard treatments on Fairview . There was a discussion, or at least a suggestion that there be a boulevard treatment on the frontage road on Grandview . I don’t know that it really lends itself to that necessarily and that’s a pretty high dollar treatment. Really the alternative one, two alternative three – when you combine them are really out of the scope of what I think we’re proposing. As I suggested last time, I think perhaps a combination of alternative 1 and alternative 2, base level to moderate level would work better with regard to having more feasible or acceptable level assessment, and could be done in a three year time-frame of installation with a 15 year pay-out.

 

Mayor:     Okay, well I see that you’re proposing – our consultant proposed that this start at the intersection of Fairview and Main .

 

Mr. Hawes:   There was some consideration given to that because they feel in order to capture the folks coming north on 385 or south on 385 they wanted to indicated the community – that there is something on the other side of the bridge basically.

 

Mayor:     So will this municipal improvement district include those businesses there on Main Street near that intersection.

 

Mr. Hawes:   Not at this point.

 

Mayor:     Okay, Ms. Lawrence

 

Ms. Lawrence:     Well as you mentioned Mr. Hawes, I said that I would like to see islands in the middle of Fairview Road with trees irrigated. Because that’s what it was supposed to be like originally. Unfortunately it got away from us. I think right now it is a freeway, just like one of the gentleman said – just like Woodruff Road . Well I mean it is really stressful to go over there and shop. I just feel like if we cut it down and had these islands and slowed the traffic down with different things we did we would put cut-through traffic, maybe it’s a pipe dream, but maybe it would be so. Maybe we would put cut-through traffic out on 385 to where what came to Fairview Road was actual shoppers that wanted to come. I live on this side of the bridge and I talk to an awful lot of people that say that we won’t go to Fairview Road , even though we’d like to. Basically some of them said they would rather go to Haywood Mall, and I can’t imagine that. But, it would be nice if people didn’t have that attitude, if a lot of the traffic was gone from over there. And that is why I would like to see those islands.

 

Mayor:     Well let me make a comment on your comment. The reason the trees got away from us as you put it is because we wanted that originally. But the Department of Transportation told us because of the line of site issue they absolutely would not allow it, so then we talked to them about lower growing stuff and they said absolutely not, so it was people who at every turn when that was proposed – we were successful in getting – because we ponied up some money to get the sidewalks with some grass strips between where we had the right-of-way to do that, and some of the things that we do have out there. So it wasn’t like we were asleep at the wheel it was just that it wasn’t allowed by the Department of Transportation.

 

Ms. Lawrence:   Oh, no I’ve never blamed it on the City of Simpsonville . I’ve always blamed it on the Highway Department, I’ve seen their work too often. But no really, maybe their values have changed now.

 

Mayor:     I think perhaps they have, we found that out on Main Street .

 

Ms. Lawrence:     That’s right.

 

Mr. Hawes:   Yeah, there’s a possibility. We have not approached them with what you have suggested specifically. We certainly could do that.

 

Ms. Lawrence:   I would just like to see us – see I’m just not really – this study is not at all really what I had in mind. I mean – but –

 

Mr. Hawes:   If you could elaborate I would be glad to …..

 

Ms. Lawrence:     Well see I don’t think it shows a tree-lined boulevard. I don’t think it shows sidewalks where you’re not scared to death to walk on. You know some good cross walks, some – and you know I know it’s fancy stuff and I know the lady from Spinx said they just didn’t think what they were going to get would be worth it. But, I would just like to see some pictures. And I don’t mean I think we need to hire anybody to do it I think somebody’s got to have some software that can throw in a tree or two and some landscaping sod or whatever.

 

Mr. Hawes:   I think Arnett Muldrow probably could come up with something like that. I think the reason they haven’t is because they’re not clear on what City Council wants. They were sort of – nor was I – in talking with you I know what you want Ms. Lawrence, I don’t know if City Council feels the same way. If they can give me some direction that you are all in agreement that we should look at it as a full boulevard treatment on Fairview Road with no cross- access except at traffic lights, we can certainly have them do an artist’s rendition on that and give us some costing on that with no difficulty.

 

Mr. Zitricki:   Mr. Mayor

 

Mayor:     Yes Mr. Zitricki

 

Mr. Zitricki:   I think that’s a wonderful idea, to have something that’s a good starting point, with the boulevard and the curb cuts. Have access only from the interchanges, come back with a picture, a drawing, an artists’ rendition or something we could look at and start from there. We may not want to go with that. We may say no we want to do something completely different, but from a starting point….

 

Mr. Hawes:   That’s what this workshop is for is to try to find out what starting point we want to get with.

 

Mayor:     Okay, I think Mr. Gecy has a comment

 

Mr. Gecy:   Included in that could be – I’d like to see them perhaps look at moving the electrical wires on the ground. I mean we really took it on the chin.

 

Mr. Hawes:   I’d love to see that to.

 

Mr. Gecy:   I mean I know it’s difficult downtown, because everythings tight – it’s just concrete and brick – but that’s just something to think about this idea of this beautiful road that turns now and goes commercial left and is going to go commercial right in the future on Harrison Bridge. But to do something like that as a plan, to continue to do that would be my goal. And as Mr. Curtis brought up – he brought up an interesting side point – if we do this – you know I’ve lobbied to have our staff do a little edging on Fairview Road like we do everyday down town. If we do that I’d like to see us have enough staff to where we could keep the highest concentration of business in the City of Simpsonville neat as a pin as well and even if we don’t put anymore trees out there I’d like to see us start doing that. That’s going to take more men, I know Mr. Carter, I’m not saying let Public Works do it with another assignment, I’m saying possibly let’s give him more men to do this and other things like that. But we’ve got to have a little attention on that side with regard to weed eating and trash picking up and – not that they don’t do it at all – just a little bit more. If we do this and put the trees and the islands in there it is going to create another maintenance issue. Now we know it’s going to cost money to look good, so when we think about this we’ve got to think about the cost of putting it in and then budgeting. We have to be strong enough to say here we have this beautiful new boulevard with all these trees and all these planted areas irrigated, now we have to pick the leaves up, cut the brush and we have to budget those people. We cannot say Public Works, here’s another job for you.

 

Mr. Hawes:   I agree 100%

 

Mr. Gecy:   We can’t get another tree planted down there unless we’re going to put more people on this job. So Mr. Mayor I know that’s a hot subject with you, but I’d like to have more people to do the work if we’re going to…..

 

Mayor:     I’m not aware of why you think that’s a hot subject with me…..

 

Mr. Gecy:   Well you always say about more personnel everytime I bring up Public Works needs another guy. It’s all a funding issue.

 

Mayor:     I just favor a lean, mean operating machine.

 

Mr. Gecy:   I understand that

 

Mayor:     But let me make a comment if I may and then I’ll recognize you Mr. Zitricki. We’re talking about what we want out through there, and as much as I said to the folks out there on Harrison Bridge Road, that the original intent of this thing was to assist developers, and property owners developing their property to do something nice there that we could work together on – but I think we ought to be talking to these people that are going to being paying for this to find out what they want out there, instead of us sitting up here imagining what would make it look great out there. (Applause from the audience). And what I think looks great they may not think looks great. We think it’s a good idea and DOT may tell us it’s not such a good idea so I think that’s the direction we need to go with on this instead of us sitting up here debating on what we think it needs to be. Mr. Zitricki

 

Mr. Zitricki:   I also want to ask Mr. Hawes to ask Arnett and Muldrow when they do their study to come back with a design – also have them put together how this is going to benefit the business owners on Fairview Road . They can do a study with other areas that have done something like this – how much more business it will draw to them vs how much they’re going to pay in taxes. We should have something that we can say here’s the benefit and we know why it’s going to be a benefit – not just an assumption. Or it won’t be a benefit – we can take a whole different approach to this. But they can do this for us.

 

Mr. Hawes:   They certainly can.

 

Mayor:     Okay, Ms. Lawrence.

 

Ms. Lawrence:     Well actually there’s a lot of information on the internet that we don’t need to pay for. We can just you know get on the internet and it has a lot of different cities that have the MID – there’s over 1,000 of them in North America – I think they said like 4-5 dozen of them in SC alone. There’s a whole lot in North Carolina . But by and large, what we have found is that it benefits the area so much that even those these things come with a sunset clause to where at the end of the time paying for it the assessment goes away that in 99% of the cases, the people like it so much they find something else they want done and they renew it. Now all this is in studies they’ve done on the internet and I certainly wish the business owners would go on there and get information and see what other cities have done and what they’ve found out about it. And yeah, I’m like Mr. Mayor, I do think that we definitely should ask you what you all want to. I think what we were doing here was just throwing out some ideas to you, but I do think your input counts.

 

Mayor:     Okay, anyone else. Mr. Larson

 

Mr. Larson:   Excuse me. On this property roster that you handed out to us, these are estimates of what the assessment would be

 

Mr. Hawes:   The far right column. That’s correct

 

Mr. Larson:   And that would be for the property owner and then we’re assuming that that would be passed onto the tenants, which would be passed on to the consumer. Are those numbers accurate as to where we stand if this thing moved ahead

 

Mr. Hawes:   They are provided a 30cents per $100 assessment ratio.

 

Mr. Larson:   And are the property – who would occupy the property – was this given to just the owners or to the tenants or I mean is this available if someone else

 

Mr. Hawes:   It’s available to anyone who wants to take a look at it at City Hall.

 

Mr. Larson:   Like Mr. Curtis he hadn’t had a chance to look at those numbers and see what – so people are getting that information if they ask for it.

 

Mr. Hawes:   Absolutely, if they ask for it we’ll provide it.

 

Mayor:     Okay, Mr. Zitricki

 

Mr. Zitricki:   Thank you. Mr. Hawes, since Ms. Lawrence brought the comment that this is easy access for the information would that be something we would want staff to take on to find out what kind of benefit this would be for the business owners or is that overwhelming for staff.

 

Mr. Hawes:   I don’t know that it’s overwhelming for staff, we could certainly do our research to the extent that we can do it. I will say that perhaps Arnett Muldrow may have some studies that they are familiar with that since they have done this previously, that I don’t think that they would necessarily have to go through the research time and effort, that they may just be able to pull some case studies.

 

Mr. Zitricki:   Okay, why don’t we do a two prong attack on this. Have staff take a stab at it and see what you can find out and check with Arnett and Muldrow and see what they have and bring it back to the next meeting.

 

Mr. Hawes:   Exactly. That’s the approach I was going to take Mr. Zitricki. We were going to take a look at it ourselves and see what they could come up with.

 

Mayor:     If you’re talking about a cost benefit analysis, I mean there again, and it sounds like I’m pandering to these people, I’m not, only they can determine whether – they’d have to do the cost benefit analysis. All we can do is say here’s what’s happened in other communities and this perhaps is how you’ll benefit from it, but we don’t know what their costs are.

 

Mr. Zitricki:   That’s correct, all we can do is have something to start with. A starting point. That’s what we’re doing today we’re starting.

 

Mayor:     All right, anyone else. Mr. Gecy, I’ll give you the last word.

 

Mr. Gecy:   I think a good place to start would be the Municipal Association, because I think they’re in connection with a lot of redevelopment cities that have been successful, Hardeeville and Ridgeland are a couple of examples. Greer of course. Property values have escalated and I know some of those are rebuilding downtown areas, but Hardeeville and Ridgeland are talking about their Main Streets, which has become a thoroughfare, and a lot of brick pavers and a lot of advance lighting. In talking with those folks down there – to say you can put a dollar value – if you put 10 bricks here you’re going to make another $1 – there’s no way to do that. But to say you’ve enhanced this area to look better and be more enticing to shoppers is about all we can do. We can get their input and say we’d like the shopping center – it would be really nice if this shopping center had a little brick here and a little wall and nice little trees and lighting, special lighting, would make my little shopping center look better. Those are the kinds of input but we can’t really say how much of an impact it would be. We can hope we would make it better looking than it is now and hope that business prospered in the future. That’s about all we can do.

 

Mayor:     Okay and with that enough has been said.

 

EXECUTIVE SESSION

Mayor:     Next item on the Agenda is we need an Executive Session to discuss a legal matter regarding the Public Works Department, so I’ll entertain a motion in that regard. Ms. Lawrence.

 

Ms. Lawrence:     Mr. Mayor I make a motion we go into Executive Session to discuss a legal matter for the Public Works Department.

 

Mayor:     Thank you Ms. Lawrence do I hear a second.

 

Mr. Larson:   Second

 

Mayor:     Mr. Larson seconds. All in favor signify by saying Aye (AYE) opposed no. Aye’s have it it’s unanimous. We are in recess to go into Executive Session. Thank you all for coming tonight and I’m sure you’ll be in touch.

 

OUT OF EXECUTIVE SESSION at 9:29 p.m.

NO ACTION TAKEN

 

Mayor:     We’re back in regular session.

 

Mr. Holmes:   Mr. Mayor before you take any motions, staff recommends that the City put out for bid the improvement of the Hunters Woods sewer line, that those bids would be returnable to the City no later than 5:00 p.m. on Thursday, November 9 th , 2006. That those bids would then be presented to Council at their regular meeting on Tuesday, November 14 th for a vote.

 

Mayor:     Thank you Mr. Holmes. Does anybody have a motion in that regard. Ms. Lawrence

 

Ms. Lawrence:     I make a motion that we accept staff’s recommendation.

 

Mayor:     Thank you Ms. Lawrence do I hear a second.

 

Mr. Larson:   Second

 

Mayor:     Thank you Mr. Larson for the second. Any discussion. Hearing none I’ll call for the vote. All those in favor signify by saying Aye (AYE) opposed No. Aye’s have it it’s unanimous.

 

ADJOURNMENT

Mayor:     So Ms Lawrence would you like to make a motion.

 

Ms. Lawrence:   I would like to make a motion we adjourn.

 

Mayor:     All right do I hear a second

 

Mr. Garrett:   Second

 

Mayor:     Thank you Ms. Lawrence and Mr. Garrett. All in favor signify by saying Aye (AYE) opposed No. Aye’s have it we are adjourned. Thank you all for coming.

 

Respectfully submitted,

 

 

 

PAMELA J. BODKINS

City Clerk