Another short meeting . . . which I expected to be longer given the agenda.
4:30 PM BOARD OF ESTIMATES ROOM 216 MMB
- Yikes! Do we really want our police training security guards how to use fire arms?
- Manager’s pay increases – with a terrible reminder that we have very few women in leadership in the city.
- What are we going to do with the Municipal Building? (almost $200,000 in architecture fees)
- $550,000 from the Affordable Housing Trust Fund and the Housing Development Reserve Fund to Care Net Pregnancy
Center of Dane County, Inc.
- Approving RFQ for Judge Doyle Square (i.e. telling developers what we want to see there and letting them submit proposals)
- JFC, more money for consultants for E. Washington Avenue development.
- Public Market RFPs (this time to find a consultant to create a business plan)
- State St. TID and spending money within a half mile of it.
They adopt all the items on the agenda except for those which they separate or for items they have speakers for. Some people registered to answer questions, but no public there to testify.
Joe Clausius separates #9, since it has no sponsors.
Larry Palm separates #10 and #11.
Satya Rhodes-Conway votes no on item 4.
They adopt a substitute on item 3.
Items 7 and 8 are placed on file.
CARENET REQUEST FOR FUNDS FROM AFFORDABLE HOUSING TRUST FUND
There are no sponsors for this item. They ask the city attorney says he sent out a written memo earlier, but it is moot if the item is removed. He says normally they wait for a sponsor to come forward, the recommendation here is to plac eon file because there is no sponsor, if someone comes forward then the item would be referred back here for debate. They vote to place it on file without prejudice.
JUDGE DOYLE SQUARE
They ask for an update. George Austin says that the Judge Doyle Committee was created last year, they began meeting and got a RFQ from staff to start development. The draft was authorized in terms of the preparation last July, the proposed process is twofold. First you approve the Request for Qaulifications (RFQ) document, it would be released by the end of February, the development teams will put together proposals and submit by April 30th and then the committee will review them and come back with a recommendation for the Request for Proposals (RFP) stage. They are looking for highly qualified teams who have worked on large scale complex issues like this that have the financial wherewithal to make it work and have a concept that is consistent with the city’s vision. We need a strong added value project that will support our tax base, create jobs and support the Monona Terrace.
Mayor asks about where they might find themselves after the get the proposals. He asks if we may end up finding that one proposal is more outstanding than others in terms of qualifications of the team and the content, would we then go into a situation where we would negotiate with them or would we do reviews and ranking. Also, he asks what happens if proposal A that is interesting but those concepts are not in B, C and D, will the people in the other proposals see that we want something, could they add that to their packet?
Austin says the RFQ is very flexible, we are not trying to be burdensome on the front end of the process. He says that they want teams to form and be excited about this project. They have two stages to go from broad stage to the specifics and to do that in a way that not all projects move on to the specifics, it provides for a short-listing, but there is no number. If the committee sees that one stands out very high and decides that there is only one proposal and they can come to the council and see if they agree. He says the can accept any or none of the proposals. He suspects there will be concepts we have not thought of yet, and in the second stage we may take advantage of that, but we do not intend to marry one team with the others. He says that they are asking the committee to come up with the requirements for the second stage of the process.
Rhodes-Conway asks to what extent do you expect people to look at work that has been done previously. There are some key concepts about emphasizing the pedestrian and there was more detail in previous planning work and we have been talking about place-making techniques – do you expect people to look into the history of this because I don’t see it mentioned here.
Austin says that they expect any team that is interested to do their due diligence and look into matters. He says they are creating a project website and they will have the various plans related to this. They are also encouraging participation in a pre-submittal meeting on March 13th at 1:00. They are also trying to do that via the web. They will reinforce the place-making issues. They will stress why the project is important to the city.
Rhodes-Conway says we have spent a lot of money on this and we are going to spend a lot more and we need to get numerous benefits out of it.
Austin says “absolutely”.
Mayor thanks everyone, says it is going to be a long journey but it is going to be exciting.
The motion passes.
MORE EAST WASHINGTON MONEY
Larry Palm asks why we need to do outside consultants? Why not in-house?
Aaron Olver says this is a reduction in consulting, they used to spend $200,000 a year and they are in the process of bringing a position in house. He says the bulk of this is in marketing. We have Heibing doing marketing and a small chunk for Vandewalle and then some contingencies for other things that are unforeseen.
Palm asks what we are hiring for.
Matt Mikolajewski says that the first contract is $30K for Heibing for marketing, webpage, e-newsletters, helping with neighborhood meetings and business outreach. $10K with Vandewalle for the planning work. $60K is requested to hire Hiebing, Vandewalle or another consultant to look at Breese Stevens Field and what we could do with additional investment there in terms of financial benefits there, looking at the 800 South block, possibly doing some tenant cultivation work. And they have several projects coming that they might need help with including Sector 67, the Mullins and Reynolds Block, Mautz Block and former Land 0′ Lakes property. He says they don’t know what they need, but this would give them the flexibility to hire either from Heibing, Vandewalle or another firm.
Palm says that the more skills they bring in house the more consistently we can deliver the resource.
Aaron Olver says this would be a good time to plug the marketing position.
Mayor says that if this had been 3 or 4 years ago and we knew it was going to be this expensive, keep in mind a few years ago we had 800 block and Union Corners and now that is double, but if we had known the expense of this, if we had known the scope of it, the serious consideration should have been to bring someone in house. Also, he says that if we look at the long term, we prefer to hire than use a consultant but what do we do if it looks like it is a window of 5 years. Not long enough to have a permanent position, but 5 years is a lot of money. We will have to make those decisions in future budgets – and the marketing position. Mayor says this is a strong case for the marketing position, as well as things we have seen in the last 6 – 8 months in terms of what we are seeing in terms of other cities marketing themselves. Kings of material out there. It is something we need to work on.
Palm says that we have had a lot of discussion among alders about what our jobs are and what you described seemed to be what alders do, communication, meeting facilitation, and we all agree we don’t get paid $30K a year so it is hard for us – or me specifically – to look at that. We know no one alder can do that.
Mayor says that they should discuss the examination of the type of national conventions take place where our competitor cities have a presence, I don’t know that we have to go to them all every year, but could you kinda review that.
Aaron Olver says they looked at the most nationally prominent conferences in terms of where site selectors go, there are 2 or 3 conferences and sometimes municipalities are there pitching them, and then there are some industry specific conferences as well. They key tecnology conferences or bio-tech or some sectors where we have some targeted recruitment possibilities and they looked at what that would cost to go to the conferences to market the city.
Shiva Bidar-Sielaff wants to know the return on investment, how many municipalities actually did get a dela made due to going to the conferences. She wants to know if there was a direct outcome. You can think about that.
Olver says that is a fair point, he says usually people see economic devleopment as the bread and butter economic development not the broad definition – business development as being entrepreneurship, business start up, business retention, business expansion and business recruitment. Business recruitment can really be a resource sink if you don’t really think about it. It can be expensive to go out and go to these things and that takes a sustained effort and if people are not prepared to do that – recruitment can be a challenge.
Mayor says they will have this for them in 5 or 6 months for next year’s budget.
Bidar-Sielaff moves adjournment.
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