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Jamie
Town Manager Jamie Justice

Manager’s Report: August 8, 2017


All supporting documents for the August 8 board of commissioners’ meetings are available here: https://davidson.novusagenda.com/agendapublic/MeetingView.aspx?MeetingID=575&MinutesMeetingID=266&doctype=Agenda
 
If you are interested in watching the video of the meetings, please view here: https://davidson.novusagenda.com/agendapublic/MeetingView.aspx?MeetingID=575&MinutesMeetingID=266&doctype=Agenda
 
SPECIAL NOTE: We are now live streaming our board meetings and work sessions via Novus Agenda (https://davidson.novusagenda.com/agendapublic/) and encourage you to tune in to the specific Novus Agenda meeting link on meeting days if you are unable to attend in person. Citizens simply need to click the red circular camera icon to the left of the meeting agenda to activate the video and can also open up the online agenda to follow along with each presentation. After each meeting (by the close of business on Wednesday), the video is saved to the Novus Agenda meeting link so you can watch when convenient to keep abreast of projects and issues. Click the “online agenda” with the video arrow to open up the agenda. To watch the entire meeting, click the top video link. To watch a video of a particular agenda item, please click the “video” link to the left of the item. To watch from a mobile phone, please use this link: https://davidson.novusagenda.com/AgendaPublic/meetingsresponsive.aspx
 

Parks and Rec

A summary of the August 8 work session (4:00 p.m.):

Parks and Recreation Director Kathryn Spatz and Cornelius-based Landscape Architect Gary Fankhauser led a discussion on active recreation space in Davidson and gave updates on the new park to be built at Bailey Springs. We also discussed possible improvements to Roosevelt Wilson Park, a potential new park along Lakeside Avenue and Griffith Street, and potential upgrades to the open space at the Ada Jenkins Center and the fields at McEver. The Livability Board will to host public input sessions to gather feedback and ideas from citizens in the near future. More details and maps are available on the agenda here: https://davidson.novusagenda.com/agendapublic/CoverSheet.aspx?ItemID=2241&MeetingID=575


oath of office

A summary of the August 8 regular meeting (6:00 p.m.):

  • Police Chief Penny Dunn was introduced and she took the Oath of Office. We are so pleased that she has joined the Davidson Police Department and is serving our citizens.
Squashic and Sos
Officers Squashic (left) and Sosnowski (right)

•    Police officers Joseph Squashic and Anthony Sosnowski were introduced; they have already taken the oath and have been on patrol for the past few months.

CALEA presentation

•    Police Chief Penny Dunn announced that the Davidson Police Department was reaccredited by CALEA, the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies. This program allows the Davidson Police Department to voluntarily demonstrate its commitment to excellence in law enforcement. We are so proud of this accreditation and our police department.

Lake Clean Up Thank You
Sgt. Searcy (left) and James Adams (right)
  • Mayor John Woods recognized the efforts of Davidson Police Sgt. Scott Searcy and Parks and Recreation Program Manager James Adams for their efforts in leading volunteers in the third annual Lake Davidson Clean-Up project. We appreciate everyone who participated to make Lake Davidson, Lake Cornelius, and Parham Park litter free.
 

  • About eight citizens spoke during the public comment period.  We appreciate their engagement in our town.  
Piet Swart
Finance Director Pieter Swart presented on the potential use of general obligation bonds to accelerate mobility (transportation), greenway, and parks and recreation projects. The Davidson Board of Commissioners held three public hearings, one for each project category and heard comments from several citizens on the following:

•    Public hearing on the mobility bond order:  The bond orders include the issuance of up to $6,000,000 in general obligation mobility/transportation bonds
•    Public hearing on the greenway bond order:  The bond orders include the issuance of up to $5,000,000 in general obligation greenway bonds
•    Public hearing on parks and recreation bond order:  The bond orders include the issuance of up to $4,000,000 in general obligation parks and recreation bonds.

All items on the consent agenda were approved including:
•    Tax collector’s settlement statement for Mecklenburg and Iredell Counties
•    FY 2018 “Order of Collection” for Mecklenburg and Iredell County Tax Collectors, authorizing the tax collector to collect ad valorem taxes
•    A budget ordinance amendment which recognizes the revenue from a $5,000 Arts & Science Council “Town Initiative” grant and provides expenditure authority in the Arts Captial Project Fund.
•    Minutes from past meetings


NEW BUSINESS


•    Economic Development Manager Kim Fleming proposed the approval of an ordinance to allow the sale of alcoholic beverages before noon on Sunday at licensed premises (Brunch Bill).  The Davidson Board of Commissioners approved the ordinance. It took effect August 13.

•    Town Clerk Carmen Clemsic proposed the approval of a resolution to direct the clerk to investigate a petition related to the annexation of an additional piece of land in the Narrow Passage development.  The Davidson Board of Commissioners approved the proposal.

Bo Fitzgerald
•    Fire Chief Bo Fitzgerald shared that the Town of Davidson was awarded a federal SAFER (Staffing for Adequate Fire & Emergency Response) grant to hire an additional full-time engineer in the Davidson Fire Department. The grant will pay for 75% of the cost in years 1 and 2, and 35% in year 3. In anticipation of this grant, the board of commissioners has already approved the 25% match funds required by the grant. We are so pleased to have received this funding so that we’ll be able to fully staff fire station #2 to improve our fire and medical response times to the eastern part of our jurisdiction. 
  • Public Works Director Doug Wright proposed the approval of a paving contract to resurface streets in the “North of Griffith” and “Village Center” parts of town. For a map of the streets being resurfaced, please click here: http://www.ci.davidson.nc.us/DocumentCenter/View/8124

OLD BUSINESS


Public Facilities

Assistant Town Manger Dawn Blobaum, Finance Director Piet Swart, and Creech & Associates Architect Brent Green gave an update of town hall site planning options and projected costs, providing two options. Please view their presentations here for details: https://davidson.novusagenda.com/agendapublic/CoverSheet.aspx?ItemID=2236&MeetingID=575

After a long effort of public engagement and great work by citizen steering committee, the option chosen by the Davidson Board of Commissioners was to continue with the plan to build a 22,000 square foot town hall in front of our current town hall for the board room, community space, and administration departments, and to renovate our existing town hall for the police and fire departments. They gave their approval to proceed with phase 2 which includes:
  • A schematic design
  • Design development
  • Construction documents, and
  • Cost reduction strategies
Once the schematic design is completed, it will go to the Design Review Board for their review, and the final building design will go to the Design Review Board for their approval. In spring 2018, the board of commissioners will vote on the construction bid, and the town will then need to get final approval from the Local Government Commission to proceed. Then we will finalize our plans for installment financing for the project.
 
Financial Impact on Citizens:
 
You might be wondering what the total impact on our citizens might be if the Davidson Board of Commissioners choose to move forward with the Public Facilities project ($13 million) and citizens vote for all three G.O. bonds ($15 million).
 
Right now, our financial model is fully-loaded with a variety of assumptions to anticipate MI-Connection subsidies, Public Facilities installment financing, and G.O. bonds, with the most current and detailed information we have at this stage.
 
In FY 2019, the county will conduct a property revaluation. Assessors are currently in Davidson doing some preliminary work this summer, so you may see people measuring the outside of your property. The county tax assessor will provide an update at the September 12 meeting t anticipate a  increase in property values across Davidson. The projected assessed value of Davidson property for FY 2019 is $2,000,000,000 at our tax rate of $0.35 per $100 of value which gives us a projected tax revenue of $7,000,000. If there is an aggregate increase of 25%, in order to maintain a revenue neutral tax rate in FY 2020, we would technically lower our tax rate from $0.35 to $0.28 per $100 of value. (Please see Public Facilities Financing Analysis page 5: https://davidson.novusagenda.com/agendapublic/CoverSheet.aspx?ItemID=2236&MeetingID=575) However, to fund our Public Facilities project, we might choose to utilize that increase in revenue by either reserving 10% or 15% to be used toward installment financing debt service for the public facilities project, bringing our tax rate to either $0.308 or $.0322.

An example might be helpful to illustrate the tax impact:
If your home has a property value of $400,000, at the current $0.35 tax rate, annual taxes are $1,400. If Davidson has an average of a 25% revaluation increase, the home value would then be $500,000 and at a new tax rate of $0.308 (at a 10% tax rate increase), annual taxes would be $1,540, which is an annual increase of $140 or $11.67 per month. Similarly, if we opt to utilize at 15% tax rate increase, annual taxes would be $1,610, which is an annual increase of $210 or $17.50 per month.
 
For more details, including the financial analysis and potential impact on taxpayers, please review the documents listed on the agenda: https://davidson.novusagenda.com/agendapublic/CoverSheet.aspx?ItemID=2236&MeetingID=575 and on our website at www.townofdavidson.org/PublicFacilities

General Obligation Bonds

Finance Director Piet Swart requested consideration of the introduction of three bond orders. The bond orders include the issuance of $6,000,000 in general obligation mobility/transportation bonds, $5,000,000 in general obligation greenway bonds, and $4,000,000 in general obligation parks and recreation bonds.  The Davidson Board of Commissioners approved all three bond orders. He then proposed the approval of a resolution to set a special bond referenda and direct the publication of notice of the special bond referenda through the Mecklenburg and Iredell County Boards of Elections.  The Davidson Board of Commissioners approved the proposal, so citizens will be able to vote on the three bond referenda on November 7, 2017.
These questions will now appear on the November 7, 2017 ballot and Davidson citizens will be able to vote:

1. “SHALL the order authorizing $6,000,000 of bonds plus interest to provide funds to pay the capital costs of constructing, reconstructing, enlarging, extending, widening, paving,resurfacing, grading and improving certain streets, roads, roundabouts, intersections,pedestrian sidewalks and bicycle lanes, including traffic and safety controls, signals,markers, lighting, related landscaping and streetscaping and the cost of any related studies,plans and design related thereto; and the acquisition of land, rights-of-way in land and easements therefor, and providing that additional taxes may be levied in an amount sufficient to pay the principal of and interest on the bonds be approved?”; with squares labeled “YES” and “NO” beneath or beside such words in which squares the voter may record his or her choice on the question presented; and
 
2.“SHALL the order authorizing $5,000,000 of bonds plus interest to provide funds to pay the capital costs of developing and preserving new and existing greenways, public open space and walking trails, including multi-use paths and protected bicycle lanes and the cost of any related landscaping, studies, plans and design related thereto; and the acquisition of land, rights-of-way in land and easements therefor, and providing that additional taxes may be levied in an amount sufficient to pay the principal of and interest on the bonds be approved?”; with squares labeled “YES” and “NO” beneath or beside such words in which squares the voter may record his or her choice on the question presented; and
 
3.“SHALL the order authorizing $4,000,000 of bonds plus interest to provide funds to pay the capital costs of acquiring, constructing, renovating, expanding and improving various parks and recreation facilities, including constructing, paving, resurfacing, grading and improving certain parking lots related thereto; acquiring land for future parks and recreation facilities; and acquiring any necessary furnishing and equipment, rights-of-way in land and easements therefor, and providing that additional taxes may be levied in an amount sufficient to pay the principal of and interest on the bonds be approved?”; with squares labeled “YES” and “NO” beneath or beside such words in which squares the voter may record his or her choice on the question presented
 
Financial Analysis

Currently, Davidson property taxes are $ .35 per year for each $100 of assessed property value. If the three bond referenda pass, the tax rate will likely need to be increased by 3.62 pennies (phased in over fiscal years 2020-2022), based on our current financial projections. If the Davidson Board of Commissioners choose to proceed with the Public Facilities project, the combined effect of G.O. Bonds and Public Facilities on a citizen who owns a house valued at $400,000, where the projected revaluation increase of 25% brings the new assessed home value to $500,000 could be a $391 annual increase (or $32.58 monthly increase) in taxes. Please see slide 8 on the Public Facilities Financing Analysis for more details: https://davidson.novusagenda.com/agendapublic/CoverSheet.aspx?ItemID=2236&MeetingID=575

For more information, please visit: www.townofdavidson.org/GOBonds.

 
Please feel free to email me at jjustice@townofdavidson.org with any questions.

OTHER

Agendas

All agendas are listed at this link: https://davidson.novusagenda.com/agendapublic/

Agendas for meetings held on the second and fourth Tuesday of the month are posted the Friday prior.


ANNOUNCEMENTS



Greenway at Fisher Farm and Abersham
Work on the construction of the greenway at Fisher Farm came to substantial completion yesterday, Tuesday, August 15. This project is part of the Mecklenburg County Park and Recreation Master Plan. Fisher Farm is now open for users to enjoy, but we ask that you please remain on the paved greenway and the mountain bike trail areas. Due to recent heavy rains, the contractor will be coming back to complete hydro-seeding in some areas and some other items noted during the walk-through.
 
Simultaneously, Mecklenburg County will be closing both entry gates to Abersham Park in order to begin that phase of their greenway project.  The Abersham paved path will be repaired and widened to meet county standards along the full length of the greenway. In addition, significant road repairs throughout the park will be performed as part of the project and a small picnic shelter will be installed for park users to enjoy.
 
We currently anticipate the entire project being completed no later than December 31, 2017.

Concerts on the Green
The next Concert on the Green is Sunday, August 20 at 6:00 p.m. featuring many gospel singing and dancing groups – it should be a lot of fun. Please join us! For more information, please visit: www.concertsonthegreen.com.

Culture Feast
Tickets are selling fast for the Arts & Science Council’s Culture Feast that will take place on Friday, September 8 on Old Oak Street behind Cornelius Town Hall. The Town of Davidson is partnering with the Towns of Cornelius and Huntersville to bring this fun dinner and entertainment event to North Mecklenburg County. Tickets are now on sale at CarolinaTix.org.  Single tickets are $35 and 2 tickets are $60 using the promo code: CultureForAll


Mecklenburg County Public Health Survey
Mecklenburg County Public Health conducts a community health assessment every three years for our county and they are currently in the process of conducting the “2017 Community Health Assessment.”  Part of this assessment project includes a brief community health opinion survey to give county (and municipal) residents a chance to voice their opinions about health issues in their community. Please click this link and complete the survey: https://www.mecknc.gov/HealthDepartment/HealthStatistics/Pages/Community-Health-Assessment.aspx
 
Schools will be in session over the next month (CSD and Davidson Day School started this week), so we ask that motorists drive safely and be vigilant of school children walking and biking to school.
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