The Regular Meeting of the 25th Board of Representatives of the City of Stamford will be held Monday, April 5, 1999 at 8:00 p.m. in the Legislative Chambers of the Board of Representatives in the Government Center, 888 Washington Boulevard, Stamford, Connecticut.
The meeting was called to order at 9:08 p.m.
INVOCATION: Led by Rep. William MacInnis
PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE TO THE FLAG: Led by President Carmen L. Domonkos.
ROLL CALL: Conducted by Clerk of the Board Annie M. Summerville. There were thirty-two representatives present; seven absent and excused: Reps. Gaztambide, Terenzio, DePina, Nanos, Day, Mitchell and Nabel; and one vacancy. Mr. Nanos arrived shortly after the meeting began.
MACHINE TEST VOTE: The machine was in good working order.
FILLING OF VACANCY:
Chair Domonkos declared a vacancy in the Third District with the recent passing of George Johnson. Rep. Owens stated that with great pride he introduced Linda Cannady. Rep. Owens stated that Ms. Cannady comes with many credentials, and that he has asked her over a number of years to come on this Board as his partner for the Third District, and that she had turned him down due to other commitments.
Rep. Owens stated that he is certain Ms. Cannady is willing to give her love for the City as she has given it to the community. Rep. Owens stated that Ms. Cannadys finest and most cherished quality, that is important to the Third District, is her ability to organize and lead, and that she follows through on community activities with great detail. For many years, Linda has shown her leadership and commitment to the community.
Rep. Owens stated that Ms. Cannady has been a resident of South Stamford for more than twenty years, and a resident of Stamford all of her life. As a product of Stamfords schools, Ms. Cannady respects and supports our education system. Rep. Owens added that Ms. Cannady is an active member of the Stamford Enterprise Zone Board; a voting member of the South End Neighborhood Revitalization Zone Initiative; Vice Chair of South End Neighborhood Foundation; and was the founder of the Friends of the End, a group that started the anti-crime vigils in the South End. She was a graduate of the Citizens Police Academy under Chief G. Patrick Tully, and a graduate of the STEP Program, which is Systematic Training for Effective Parenting.
Rep. Owens moved the appointment of Ms. Cannady; said motion was seconded. A motion to close the nominations was made, seconded and approved by unanimous voice vote. Rep. Owens cast a single vote for Ms. Cannady.
Chair Domonkos then administered the oath of office.
MOMENTS OF SILENCE: For the late:
Upon motion duly made and seconded and approved by unanimous voice vote, the Steering Committee report was waived.
Chair Esposito reported that the Appointments Committee met on Tuesday, March 30, 1999 at 7:30 p.m. Present were Committee Member Reps. Esposito, Corelli, Nanos, Boccuzzi, Mellis, Fortunato and Fedeli.
Chair Esposito stated that there was not a quorum at the time of his interview. Chair Esposito moved to take this appointment out of committee; said motion was seconded and approved by unanimous voice vote. Chair Esposito stated that Mr. Correa was interested in public service, and the members present at the Committee meeting recommended approval. Upon motion duly made and seconded, Mr. Correa was approved by unanimous voice vote.
Upon motion duly made and seconded and approved by unanimous voice vote, the Consent Agenda was approved.
Rep. Loglisci asked if Mr. Hunter was a member of a different commission. Chair Esposito stated that Mr. Hunter is presently on the Economic Development Commission, but his term expired on December 1, 1998.
Chair Martin reported that the Fiscal Committee met on Monday, March 15, 1999, Monday, March 22, 1999 and on Thursday, March 25, 1999. The Fiscal Committee agenda was heard on Monday, March 22, 1999. Present were Committee Member Reps. Martin, Owens, Mellis, Nanos, DeLuca, Green-Carter, Shapiro, Giordano, Loglisci, Poltrack and Sherer.
Chair Martin reminded all Fiscal Committee members and other representatives that the Fiscal Committee is meeting every night this week on budget items. After Steering Committee, the Board of Education budget will be presented.
Chair Martin reported that this item was approved by a vote of 6-2-1. This is to fund the Educational Assistants contract and this item appeared on the Personnel Committees agenda. Rep. Martin moved the item. Rep. Martin stated that the Fiscal Committee determined that if the raise awarded in this contract was similar to other contracts, the amount would be $93,600. The Committee disagreed as to whether $93,600, the original $140,394 or a compromise figure in the middle of approximately $117,000. After much discussion, the Committee approved the full amount.
A motion was made by Rep. Boccuzzi to reduce the amount of the item to $94,000; said motion was seconded. Rep. Boccuzzi stated that even if $0 was approved, the teachers aides will get their raise and other benefits as usual. Rep. Boccuzzi stated that the contracts that the other unions have accepted have provided 2% raises, and he is concerned that if this contract is approved, a precedent will be set for future contracts.
Mr. Martin explained that the original motion on the floor was to approve $140,000; Rep. Boccuzzi motioned to change the number to $94,000; this requires a simple majority vote. Rep. Martin added that if this vote succeeds, the $94,000 will be on the floor to consider and the Board can either accept or reject it. Rep. Martin stated that if the $94,000 motion fails, the Board will vote on the $140,000. Said motion failed by machine vote of 12-22-0 (majority vote required).
The main motion ($140,394) was then voted on and said motion failed by a machine vote of 21-13-0 (two-thirds majority required).
Rep. Martin moved that this vote be reconsidered, and because he was on the prevailing side, he is entitled to make a motion for reconsideration; said motion was seconded and approved by machine vote 25-8-0 (majority required).
Chair Martin stated that the members at the Fiscal Committee were in agreement that some amount of money should be approved. Some felt that the compromise number of $117,000 should be approved. Rep. Martin moved the amount of $117,000; said motion was seconded by Rep. ONeill.
Rep. Lasko stated that if this vote does not pass the Board of Education will get the money from somewhere to fund this provision. In that regard, he asked where the money would come from. He stated that the Board of Education is running a number of very needed programs, involving the quality of education in Stamford, and he believes that this motion should be supported so that adequate funds for books or computers or other important items is there. Said motion failed by machine vote (17-15-2) (majority required).
Rep. Martin stated that he believed the motion has passed as it should be the number of voting members, and abstentions should not be counted. President Domonkos stated that the Board has always counted all representatives present, not just those voting. Rep. Sherer stated that he agreed with President Domonkos, adding that if a representative walks off the floor, the representative is not counted. President Domonkos stated the motion has failed.
The main motion was voted on in the amount of $140,394; said motion was seconded and failed by machine vote (22-12-0) (two-thirds majority required).
Rep. Skigen moved for reconsideration. He stated that as we currently stand, the Board of Education will get no funds, and he doesnt believe that is the intent of two-thirds of the members of the Board. Said motion was seconded. Said motion was approved by machine vote (22-9-0) (majority required).
Rep. Skigen moved to amend the amount to $94,000; said motion was seconded. Said motion was approved by machine vote (24-10-0) (majority required).
The main motion, as amended to $94,000, was approved by machine vote (24-10-0) (two-thirds majority required).
Chair Martin stated the Committee reduced this amount to $10,000 and moved the item. Said motion was seconded and approved by unanimous voice vote.
Chair Martin stated that the Director of Information Systems believes that our software systems are, for the most part and with the exception of the Human Resources systems, Y2K compliant. He sees problems in the traffic and signalization system, which has not been fully tested yet, although they are working on. He also stated there may be problems with embedded code in chips, and we currently have limited knowledge on the Y2K status of this.
Upon motion duly made and seconded and approved by unanimous voice vote, Item No. 4, F25.150 was split into two matters.
Chair Martin stated the Fiscal Committee approved the $50,000.
Chair Martin stated that due to the unknown Y2K status of some of the systems, ranging from gas pumps to pumping systems at the sewage treatment plant to elevators in Government Center, and because there has been no systematic attempt so far to determine what needs to be replaced or repaired, the Committee held $1 million. City personnel admitted that the $1 million was a wild guess, and because they needed some money to get started, the $50,000 was approved. Chair Martin moved the $50,000; said motion was seconded and approved by unanimous voice vote. Chair Martin stated that awaiting receipt of further documentation, the $1 million will remain in Committee.
Chair Martin stated the Committee defeated this item 5-5-0, primarily because Committee members felt the information presented was incomplete.
Rep. Nakian moved that the item be returned to Committee pending receipt of the information; said motion was seconded and approved by unanimous voice vote.
Rep. Martin stated that the item was reduced to conform to the submitted material; Rep. Martin moved the item; said motion was seconded and approved by unanimous voice vote.
Rep. Martin stated that he learned this is not an appropriation request, but in fact is a request to approve a specific purpose. The Fiscal Committee took no action, and he learned that the item can wait one month and be transferred to the Legislative & Rules Committee.
Chair Martin moved the Consent Agenda, consisting of Items 5, 6, 7 and 8; said motion was seconded and approved by unanimous voice vote.
President Domonkos stated that Item No. F25.158 would be placed on next months Steering Agenda to be assigned to the Legislative & Rules Committee.
Chair Nakian reported that the Legislative & Rules Committee met on Monday, March 29, 1999 at 7:00 p.m. Present were Committee Member Reps. Nakian, MacInnis, Gasparrini, Skigen, Spandow, Sherer and Fedeli. Reps. Lasko and Mitchell were excused. Also present were Reps. Giordano, White, Lyons and DeLuca; Andrew McDonald, Esq., Mayor Malloy, Richard Redness and William Hennessey.
Chair Nakian stated that regarding Item No. LR25.057, the Committee had requested an opinion from corporation counsel regarding this ordinance. The answer received was a clear No as it is against the constitution and state statutes. The Committee held the item for the purpose of removing it at Steering. Chair Nakian asked Mr. McDonald if he could prepare an ordinance which would not have the problems associated with the current ordinance. Mr. McDonald agreed to provide a new draft ordinance.
Chair Skigen stated the Personnel Committee met on Wednesday, March 24, 1999. Present were Committee Member Reps. Fedeli, Fortunato, Loglisci, MacInnis, Owens and Skigen. Reps. Gasparrini, Spandow and Lasko were excused. Also present were Director of Human Resources James Haselkamp; Assistant Director of Human Resources, Bill Stover; Personnel Specialist, Fred Manfredonia; Board of Education Personnel Director, Faye Ruotolo; Board of Education Member, Robert King; Board of Education outside counsel, Thomas Mooney; Director of Legal Affairs, Andrew McDonald; Director of Administration, Thomas Hamilton; Director of Public Safety, Health & Welfare, John Byrne; and Turn of River Fire Chief Lewis Belmont.
The Committee also met on March 29, 1999. Present were Reps. Fedeli, Fortunato, Loglisci, MacInnis, Spandow and Skigen. Reps. Gasparrini, Owens and Lasko were excused. Also present were Director of Human Resources James Haselkamp; Assistant Director of Human Resources, Bill Stover; and Personnel Specialist, Fred Manfredonia.
Chair Skigen reported that the Committee voted 6-0-0 to hold the item.
Chair Skigen reported that at the request of Mr. Haselkamp, the Committee voted to hold this item.
Chair Skigen stated there was considerable discussion on this item. The Committee received the contract at the time of the first meeting on March 24, 1999, and the Committee held a second meeting so that an opportunity was available to review the item. There were concerns expressed that were addressed. Chair Skigen stated that Mr. Manfredonia stated that had the City known at the time of the PeopleSoft contract signing what it knows now, it probably would not have signed the agreement and would have waited until the implementation partner contract was signed. Even with that, the Committee felt the contract was appropriate and approved it 6-0-0.
Chair Martin stated he understood the vote of the Committee and the need to move ahead at this project. He stated at the Fiscal Committee meetings, one of the key questions the Committee had was what the return would be on this project. There are two components to this project: one is the Y2K compliance and the second part is a good vision of how our human resources should be processed. The costs of implementing this was to be $750,000, but when the bids came back, they were closer to $2.25 million. At that price, he doesnt believe this is any longer a good investment. Rep. Martin believes that other alternatives should have been explored, Rep. Martin feels the Committee was misled by the outside consultants, and therefore, he does not feel he can vote for this contract.
Chair Skigen stated the City is not obligated to complete Part II of the contract until it receives the results of Part I and makes a determination of whether it will go forward. President Domonks stated, that if the Board agrees, she will send a letter asking that a report be made to the Board at the completion of the first phase, outlining what future costs would be anticipated.
Rep. Loglisci stated that there is already over $500,000 invested in the PeopleSoft project, and we now have time constraints. He believes the analysis portion should be approved, and he agrees with Rep. Martin that the Board was misled by the outside consultants.
Rep. Skigen asked if the President could include a request in the letter that the administration meet with a Committee prior to making a commitment to Phase II of the project.
Upon motion duly made and seconded and approved by unanimous voice vote, the rules were suspended to take up the following item:
Chair Skigen moved the Consent Agenda, consisting of Item Nos. 1, 3 and 4; said motion was seconded and approved by unanimous voice vote.
Chair Owens reported that the Operations Committee met on Thursday, March 25, 1999. Present were Committee Member Reps. Nanos, Nable, Owens, Imbrogno and Lyons. Also in attendance was Rep. Martin; Rep. Zelinsky was excused. Also present was the City of Stamford Design Engineer.
Chair Owens stated the Committee voted 5-0-0 and moved the item; said motion was seconded and approved by unanimous voice vote.
Chair Fortunato stated the Public Safety & Health Committee met again this evening to consider secondary items. Those in attendance included Reps. DeLuca, Lyons, Mobilio, MacInnis, Poltrack, Skigen and Fortunato.
Chair Fortunato stated that Dr. Harris, Rick Petersen of the Health Department, Dr. Porter of UCONN, Martha Fullilove and Carolyn Mason of the Creative Child Care Center were in attendance. The Creative Child Care Center playground has been unavailable for use by the children for more than two years. Last spring the Committee met on this item and thought a solution would be forthcoming. The Health Department is currently analyzing the agents used in the cooling system, and the appropriate parties have agreed to meet in April to discuss further plans for a complete resolution to this problem.
Chair Fortunato reported that this issue was brought to the Committee by Gabe DeLuca to develop a Safe Night plan to target youth between 17 to 18 years of age. A committee will be developed to plan and execute the event.
Chair Fedeli reported that the Parks & Recreation Committee met on Wednesday, March 24, 1999. Present were Committee Member Reps. Fedeli, Imbrogno, Lyons, Nable, ONeill and Poltrack. Also in attendance were Reps. DeLuca and Giordano; Susan Elan from the Stamford Advocate; Ralph Tedesco; Pat Broom, Director of Operations; Rick Redness and Steven Rosenberg and Dr. Kahn on Item No. 1; Mickey Docimo from Operations; Mike Dale from E. Gaynor Brennan on Item No. 3.
Chair Fedeli stated that the Committee approved this item 6-0-0 and moved the item.
Rep. Skigen asked if there was any discussion of who would control the gate that would be erected. Chair Fedeli stated that the new community policing patrol would be taking an active role in this matter. Rep. Summerville asked what the purpose of the gate was. Chair Fedeli stated that there has been significant use of the park after hours, causing damage and disturbance. Rep. Summerville asked who decides when the gate is opened and closed. Chair Fedeli stated the Office of Operations will hold one key, and the Police Department will have the other key for opening and closing. Rep. Summerville asked if there were other parks with keys and gatekeepers. Rep. Fedeli stated Cove Island has a key and gatekeeper system. Rep. Summerville stated that Riverbank Park is not similar to Cove Island and asked Chair Fedeli to find out if there were any other parks in Stamford, similar to Riverbank Park, that had keys and gatekeepers.
Rep. Summerville asked what the hours of this park would be. Chair Fedeli stated the Parks & Recreation Commission will be discussing park opening and closing times at their next meeting. Rep. Summerville also asked about posting of times. Chair Fedeli stated that there is a process that has to be followed, and this process includes public notice.
Upon motion duly made and seconded and approved by unanimous voice vote, Item No. PR25.028 was approved.
Chair Fedeli stated a written report has been provided to each representative that was provided to the Committee by Ralph Tedesco.
Chair Fedeli stated that a report has been provided to each representative regarding this item. She added that the Committee was concerned about E. Gaynor Brennans ability to fund its capital projects now that it is a self-sufficient entity. She stated the Mayor has agreed to meet with the Golf Commission and Mickey Docimo and Mike Dale to talk about other ways to fund the golf course.
Chair Shapiro stated that the Urban Redevelopment Committee met on Tuesday, March 23, 1999 at 7:00 p.m. Present were Committee Member Reps. Shapiro, MacInnis, Corelli, Martin and Gaztambide.
Chair Shapiro reported that the Committee tabled the issue regarding the URCs alternative sites for senior housing.
Chair Drucker reported that the Housing/Community Development/Social Services Committee met on Tuesday, March 16, 1999. Present were Committee Member Reps. Giordano, Green-Carter, Mitchell, Blackwell and Mellis. Excused were Reps. Gaztambide, Mobilio and Drucker.
President Domonkos thanked the Committee, chaired by Rep. Summerville, for the wonderful job on the 50th Anniversary Event. She stated that the Consolidation display at the dinner was put together by Eva Weller, with help from the Library and the Historical Society, is on display in the Lobby.
Chair Nakian stated a meeting of the Joint Special Revaluation Committee was held on Monday, March 29, 1999 at 6:00 p.m., with Reps. Nakian, Spandow and Fedeli from the Baord of Representatives present; also present were Board of Finance Member Gerry Fox and Mary Lou Rinaldi; William Forker, Director of Assessment and Collections; Frank Kirwin, Assessor; Andrew McDonald, Director of Legal Affairs; James Moran and Gerald Rasmussen of Moran & Associates; and several representatives from Sabre Systems.
Chair Nakian reported a detailed report was provided to all representatives. The bottom line is that everything is progressing on schedule.
1. President Domonkos stated that the video of the 50th Anniversary Celebration was shown in Conference Room No. 1.
2. President Domonkos stated that the new Code books were on each representatives desk as well as on the Internet and the City Network.
Upon motion duly made and seconded and approved by unanimous voice vote, the meeting was adjourned at 10:32 p.m.
The proceedings are available on audio tape at the
Offices of the Board of Representatives.