CITY OF PROSPECT
CITY COUNCIL MEETING
September 15, 2008
(A complete transcript of this meeting is available at City Hall and on the City's Web Site, http://www.prospectky.com)
Mayor Todd Eberle; Council Members Loretta Ertel, Sandra Leonard, Stuart Miles, Alan Simon, and Lee Zimmerman; City Attorney Grover Potts; City Administrator Ann Simms; Police Lieutenant Dennis Wine; Recording Secretary Debra Skaggs; Court Reporter Bruce Handy.
Absent: Council Member Sandy Tucci.
Mayor Eberle called the meeting to order at 7:00 p.m.
MAYOR'S INTRODUCTORY REMARKS:
Mayor Eberle stated that possibly the worst storm in the history of the city struck the city yesterday afternoon Sunday, September 14 th . The storm came in the form of winds following Hurricane Ike which tracked inland from the Texas gulf coast. While there was no rain, the wind speeds were tracked at over 75 miles per hour and considerable damage was done to the entire Jefferson County area. Most all of Prospect is without electric or telephone service. Roads have been kept open consistently beginning with efforts of the Prospect Police Department and the Harrods Creek Fire Department in late afternoon of Sunday. The Mayor noted that City Hall has remained open and is utilizing a backup telephone system. There was disagreement as to how traffic should be handled at intersections where traffic control lights were out, but officers were ultimately able to assist the flow of traffic on U.S. 42 and major intersections within the city. The library continued operations using manual check-in and check-out of books. The City remains in continual contact with Metro Louisville, Louisville Gas & Electric, and other sources. Direct contact has been made with Metro Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson, Metro Deputy Mayor Richard Johnstone, LG&E's Vice President for Energy Delivery, and various tree service resources to coordinate restoration and emergency efforts. While there was a brief period for assessment of our situation, City Hall opened today at 8:30 a.m. and operations are going smoothly. All members of the staff are present to assure that government operations continue without interruption during the weather emergency. Mayor Eberle expressed his gratitude to Metro Louisville Mayor Abramson, LG&E, the Harrods Creek Fire Department, the Prospect Police, the City Hall staff and the many cooperative and helpful citizens for their assistance and patience. He also noted that the willingness of neighbors to help neighbors is bringing us through the area's worst storm in over a century. He observed that tonight's City Council Meeting is the first city council meeting conducted by candlelight.
Mayor Eberle introduced Prospect's new Deputy City Clerk for Finance, Debra Skaggs, to the members of the Council. He noted that she has been in place since August 26 th and has quickly addressed the backlog of work which accumulated when the position remained empty during the interview process.
GUEST CANDIDATE FOR PUBLIC OFFICE:
Candidate for Metro Louisville City Council Art Hoffman introduced himself to the members of the Prospect City Council. He is running as a candidate for the 16 th Metro Council District which includes the City of Prospect. He expressed his appreciation for the opportunity to appear before the Council and noted his familiarity with the city and the issues of importance to Prospect residents. Mr. Hoffman invited any Council Member to inquire as to his positions on issues of concern to Prospect and the 16 th District.
APPROVAL OF MINUTES:
Council Member Sandra Leonard moved approval of the minutes of the regular City Council Meeting of July 21, 2008; Council Member Zimmerman seconded; passed unanimously.
Mayor Eberle noted that the minutes of the regular City Council Meeting of August 18, 2008 were not currently available. All members of the Council agreed to defer approval until the October 20, 2008 Council Meeting.
Mayor Eberle noted that the invitation for bids on construction of the city's new salt storage structure was published in the September 14 th edition of the Louisville Courier-Journal. Copies of the bid invitation were distributed. The city is hoping to receive all bids prior to a Special Prospect City Council Meeting at 7:00 p.m. on Monday, September 22, 2008. The bid opening will be the only agenda item for the Special Meeting. Funds for the salt structure were included in the 2008-2009 City Budget approved by the Council.
Mayor Eberle advised that the Prospect Public Tree Inventory is largely complete thanks to the efforts of dedicated volunteers throughout the months of August and September. Forestation Board Members Lee Tucci and Harry Hardin have assisted in coordinating the efforts of over twenty-five citizen volunteers.
Police Lieutenant Dennis Wine gave the Police Report in the absence of Police Chief Marvin Wilson. He noted that the Police Department Self Defense Class will be rescheduled for October 14, 2008. Other upcoming events in which the Police Department will participate include the September 19 th Transportation Day at St. Francis In The Fields Church; the September 20 th Safety Day at the Prospect Village Kroger; and the October 19 th Harrods Creek Fire Department Open House and Community Fair.
Council Members expressed concern with the difficulties created with the lack of adequate traffic control by the Prospect Police Department in the aftermath of yesterday's windstorm at intersections where electronic traffic control signals were out. Extended discussion ensued regarding the use of portable traffic stop signs placed at signalized intersections as opposed to having officers actively direct traffic on-site at those intersections. Mayor Eberle noted that upon arrival at city hall about 7:30 a.m., he had requested that Prospect Police Officers actively direct traffic at all signalized intersections on U.S. Highway 42 in the city in order to facilitate the flow of traffic during the morning rush hour. There was difficulty in carrying out that request. Lt. Dennis Wine reported that the situation in Prospect was no different than elsewhere in Jefferson County and that he placed officers at intersections about 9:00 a.m. today. Discussion continued with regard to placement of officers in the intersections as opposed to merely parking their vehicles near intersections where traffic signals were not operational. Mayor Eberle as well as City Administrator Ann Simms noted that a large number of phone calls were received at City Hall regarding the lack of traffic intersection control. It was also noted that Officer Haverlin should be commended for her handling of traffic at intersections during the afternoon shift. The Council requested a written time-line report analyzing and describing what happened with regard to intersection traffic control between 7:30 a.m. and 9:30 a.m. in Prospect earlier today (September 15, 2008). The members of the City Council requested that the written report be distributed to the City Council at or before the October 20 th City Council Meeting. It was noted that the report should also indicate what was learned from this emergency situation as well as set out a protocol describing how similar situations should be handled in the future. Lt. Wine agreed that he and Police Chief Wilson would produce a report on the events of the morning of September 15, 2008, and a written protocol for police response to such events in the future. All members of the Council agreed.
No new business
Council Member Alan Simon moved SECOND READING for ORDINANCE NO. 491, SERIES 2008: AN ORDINANCE AMENDING CHAPTER 39 OF THE CODE OF ORDINANCES OF THE CITY OF PROSPECT RELATING TO THE PROSPECT CODE ENFORCEMENT BOARD.
Council Member Sandra Leonard moved to adjourn; Council Member Alan Simon seconded; passed unanimously.
Mayor Eberle declared the meeting adjourned at 8:00 p.m.
Todd B. Eberle
Ann R. Simms