Board of Commissioners Regular Session Held January 24th
Beverly Cantrell - January 25, 2022 7:56 pm
The Ponca City Board of Commissioners met in regular session on January 24, 2022. Mayor Homer Nicholson called the meeting to order, which was followed by the pledge of allegiance. Commissioners Bodick, Chapman, Scott and Taylor were in attendance.
Consent Agenda – Under the Consent Agenda, the City Commission approved the minutes of the Ponca City Board of Commissioners regular session held January 10, 2022; a resolution appropriating money for payment of claims against the City of Ponca City; a resolution waiving City Code Sec. 7-1-4 (number of garage sales in a given year) for a City-Wide Garage Sale Day on March 19, 2022 and waiving the $5 permit fee in conjunction with the City’s Annual Spring Cleanup which will be held March 19 through March 26, 2022; a resolution of the Board of Commissioners of the City of Ponca City amending the operating budget of various funds for Fiscal Year 2021-22; a resolution of the Board Of Commissioners of the City of Ponca City authorizing the Finance Director/City Clerk to destroy municipal records under his control and according to State statute; a contract award for the purchase of a Toro Groundmaster 4300-D large area rough mower from Professional Turf Products, L.P., in the amount of $68,867.59; an agreement with MKEC Engineering to provide inspection and construction oversight services for the re-decking of the Union Street Bridge over Highland Avenue in the amount of $58,680.56; an interlocal cooperation agreement with the OBN (Oklahoma State Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Control) to supply TFO (Task Force Officers) to support the COPS Anti-Methamphetamine Program Task Force Mission; the authorization of advertisement of bids for the re-decking of the Union Street bridge over Highland Avenue; authorization to advertise for bids for Sidewalk Improvement Project SST 22-2, Third Street west side, Grand Avenue to Central Avenue; and an amendment to a roadway easement to allow for the owners of a landlocked property on the north side of the north one-half of the southeast quarter of the northeast quarter of Section 5, Township 25 North, Range 2 East, I.P.M., Kay County, Oklahoma, shared access to a roadway easement to access their property.
City Manager’s Report – Under the City Manager’s Report, City Manager Craig Stephenson reported that the Fiscal 2022-23 budget preparations officially kicked-off January 24 with a meeting for Department Heads and Supervisors. A budget overview will be provided for the City Commission during the February 7, 2022 work session. City Commission budget hearings with city management and departments will be held on April 18 and April 19, 2022. The February 7 work session will also include a presentation on the City of Ponca City’s Kaw Lake allocations and potential path forward.
Stephenson also reminded the public that recycled Christmas tree mulch will be available, free of charge to the public, starting January 27, 2022 until it is gone. The mulch will be located across the street from the drop-off Recycling Center on West Prospect Avenue. Those interested in the mulch for gardening and landscaping use will need to bring their own shovels and containers to transport it.
Public Hearings – Under Public Hearings, a public hearing was conducted and the City Commission approved an ordinance amending Title 10, Chapter 1, Chapter 3, And Chapter 4, of the City Code of Ponca City, entitled “Building Codes and Regulations”; providing for the adoption of the ICC 2018 edition of the International Mechanical and Fuel Gas Code, and International Plumbing Code; providing for repealer and severability; and setting an effective date. Historically, the City has updated its building codes every three years as they became available and in print from the ICC (International Code Council). These Codes apply to the construction, remodel and additions to residential and commercial buildings and structures. Until 2009, the State of Oklahoma had minimal oversight or control over a local community’s ability to adopt the Codes as they see fit. In 2009, a State agency was created by Statute whose purpose was to adopt a uniform building code to be administered by each and every jurisdiction within the State, as well as unincorporated areas. The OUBCC (Oklahoma Uniform Building Code Commission) is funded by fees attached to building permits issued by local jurisdictions. Since its infancy, the UBCC has lagged behind in their review and adoption of the International Codes. Such is the case with the 2018 editions, as the suite of codes was only finally adopted this past Fall. The City’s Construction Appeals Board has historically served as the local advisory committee for the adoption of building codes. This responsibility has obviously now shifted to the State. Never the less, the Appeals Board can still offer a local perspective and recommendation for adoption of the new Codes. This particular agenda item proposed the adoption of the International Mechanical, Fuel Gas, and International Plumbing Code. As is the usual case, the 2018 codes do not contain sweeping changes in any particular area but instead, reflect the continual evolution in code applications and use of new materials where experience, laboratory testing, and product improvements warrant such changes. Specifically, these changes address ventilation, exhaust, and duct systems, combustion air, and gas piping.
New Business – The City Commission approved Change Order No. 1 To Sober Brothers, Inc., to accept all work as complete for “Water Line Improvement Project, Hartford Avenue – Fifth Street to Seventh Street”, Project No. PCUA 22-1, in the add amount of $48.76, and the final payment in the amount of $177,592.77. This project was for the replacement of a deteriorated 10-inch water main under the south side of Hartford Avenue from the east side of Fifth Street to Seventh Street. There had been several breaks and repairs of this water line over the past couple of years. The line had deteriorated to the point that it needed to be replaced with a new 10-inch line. The improvements completed include 877 linear feet of new 10-inch water line including new valves and appurtenances. The project required the removal and replacement of approximately 1,194 square yards of concrete pavement involving the closure of the eastbound lanes of Hartford Avenue from Fifth Street to Seventh Street.
The total final contract amount for the project is $279,224.88. The final water line contract portion is $128,921.00, which is a deduction of $428.00 from the original contract amount for water line items. The final payment amount for water line items is $24,845.65. The final roadway contract portion is $150,303.88 which is an increase of $476.76 from the original contract amount for roadway items. The final payment amount for roadway items is $129,747.12. There were 60 calendar days contract time provided for completion of the project. To encourage the contractor to complete the project as quickly as possible a $1,000 per day bonus/penalty clause was included in the contract. All of the work specified in the contract was completed in 37 calendar days. As such, the contractor has earned 23 days of early completion bonus totaling $23,000.00. The bonus payment will be paid equally from the Water Fund and the Street Sales Tax fund. The project combines street repairs and improvements with water line repairs into one project. As such, the street repairs and improvements will be paid by the Street Sales Tax and must be considered and approved by the Board of Commissioners while the water line repairs will be paid from the Water fund and must be considered and approved by the PCUA Trustees.
The City Commission approved the transfer of a piece of real property located south of the 800 Block of East Grand Avenue from the Ponca City Public Schools. On December 13, 2021, the Ponca City Public Board of Education voted and approved to transfer a piece of land along East Grand Avenue between South Eight and South Ninth Streets to the City. The purpose of this transfer was to facilitate the transfer of the property to Habitat for Humanity for the purposes of using the property to develop housing. This was determined to be the easiest way to transfer the property to Habitat for Humanity based on state statute.
In a companion item, the City Commission also approved the transfer of surplus real property located south of the 800 Block of East Grand Avenue to the Ponca City Area Habitat for Humanity, Inc., for the purpose of creating affordable housing and; authorized the Mayor to execute a development agreement with the Ponca City Area Habitat For Humanity, Inc. For years, the volunteers from Habitat for Humanity have constructed affordable housing for low and moderate income individuals and families throughout Ponca City. The man-hours expended by these volunteers constructing homes have in turn allowed the City to participate in Federal housing grant programs without any required local match. The organization today is essentially the only major party investing in the re-development of older neighborhoods. In 2015, Habitat began constructing new homes in 1000 block of West Grand on lots that had remained dormant for decades. Since then, five new homes have been completed and sold to qualified families. Habitat volunteers recently constructed a sixth and final home on land that was deeded to the organization at no cost.
In the Fall of 2020, representatives of Habitat approached the City about the status of the vacant half-block located on the south side of the 800 block of East Grand. As it turns out, that property was actually owned by the Ponca City School District and their representatives stated they had no future planned use for it. However, the school district cannot deed excess property to individuals or corporations. They can, however, deed the property to the City and under 11 O.S., Cities do have the authority to declare the property to be surplus and deed it to a third party if there is a public purpose for doing so. In November of 2021, the School Board voted to deed the property to the City.
The homes constructed on West Grand by Habitat are of a modern design, architecturally. That same style of construction might not be appropriate for the block in question, given the age and style of the existing housing in the neighborhood. Staff reached out to several nearby homeowners and they expressed a desire to see new homes that were historic rather than a modern style. Habitat does have a design professional as a volunteer and therefore, a housing style can be created that contains architectural features such as gable roofs, open front porches and even detached garages.
Rather than prescribing a series of deed restrictions be attached to the transfer of the property, staff suggests instead that Habitat execute a Development Agreement with the City that outlines the terms and conditions of the transfer. For example, it will take years for the organization to build out the site and in the meantime, the vacant portion must continue to be maintained to an acceptable standard. Then, there is the matter of the architectural design of the new homes. Fortunately, there is a printed document available that can be used as a guide for the construction of new homes. The City engaged the services of a Historic Preservation Consultant back in 2014 to develop residential design guidelines for the City’s two historic districts. The result was a 176-page document that is the go-to reference for any proposed alterations to the existing housing stock within these historic districts. There is one specific chapter set aside for “new construction.” The Building Code staff will simply reference this chapter when reviewing plans submitted for the construction of the new homes.
PCUA (Ponca City Utility Authority)
PCUA Consent Authority – Under the PCUA Consent Agenda, the PCUA Trustees approved the minutes of the Ponca City Utility Authority regular session held January 10, 2022; a resolution appropriating money for the payment of claims against the Ponca City Utility Authority; a Change Order No. 1 to Sober Brothers, Inc., to accept all work as complete for “Water Line Improvement Project No. PCUA 22-1, Hartford Avenue – Fifth Street to Seventh Street”, in the add amount of $48.76, and the final payment in the amount of $177,592.77; and an amendment to a roadway easement to allow for the owners of a landlocked property on the north side of the north one-half of the southeast quarter of the northeast quarter of Section 5, Township 25 North, Range 2 East, I.P.M., Kay County, Oklahoma, shared access to a roadway easement to access their property.
PCUA New Business – The PCUA Trustees also approved a request for authorization to advertise for bids for Phase 4 and 5 of the Fiber to the Home Project. Final engineering is complete in the designated Phase 4 and Phase 5 areas of the Fiber To The Home Project. Phases 4 and 5 cover all residences and businesses on the east side of North 14th Street, inside the City limits. For overall time, and potential budget savings, Ponca City Broadband will bid construction of these areas together. Advertisement for bids will begin on or before February 3, 2022. Bids will be opened 21 days after the advertised start date. A future agenda item will be brought, recommending the actual bid award. The project will be funded through the Ponca City Broadband Capital Fund.