January 25, 2011 Minutes



JANUARY 25, 2011

7:30 PM



Mayor Greg Zarus

Mayor Pro-Tem Kathie deNobriga

Council Member Greg Creech

Council member Bitsy Pitts


City Clerk Valerie Caldwell

Public Works Director Phil Howland


Council member Melanie Hammet

Council member Cindy Diamond


Mayor Pro-Tem deNobriga called the meeting to order at 7:32 pm, and welcomed those in attendance.


The pledge of allegiance was led by Mayor Pro-Tem deNobriga.


Tuesday 02/01 ARB 7:00 pm Beach House

Saturday 02/05 PLAIN Pancake B’fast 8:30 am Club House

Saturday 02/05 Town Hall Meeting 11:00 am Club House

Monday 02/14 City Council Meeting 7:30 pm Court House

Council Member Creech announced a Neighborhood Watch meeting to be held on the 18th, and Mayor Pro-Tem deNobriga announced that Lakefest Committee meetings would begin again, starting Sunday, January 30, 2011 at 6:00 pm.

Council Member Creech stated that he would not be in attendance for the Council meetings in February and March, but would be attending the Work Sessions. He also reported he would be completing and submitting the necessary forms on behalf of the City for the Keep America Beautiful program.


The following amendments to the agenda were unanimously approved upon motion by Council member Pitts and second by Council member Creech.

Addition of Town Hall Agenda under New Business

Tabling of MARTA Memorandum of Understanding as requested by Public Works Director

Tabling of Capital Improvement Budgets as requested by Public Works Director


There were no public comments.


Arts – Mayor Pro-Tem deNobriga reported that the Lakefest Committee would begin planning and preparation for the annual event with the first meeting being scheduled for Sunday, January 30th. She also reported that First Friday was enjoying new energy with the addition of Angela Holley and Tommy Conlon.

TAB – Council member Pitts stated that seedlings were being ordered for Arbor Day.

CLUBHOUSE – Council member Pitts reported that the Clubhouse renovation has been completed and the “grand opening” will be Saturday, February 5th for the PLAIN Breakfast and Town Hall meeting.

[Mayor Zarus arrives, 7:39 pm and assumes the chair]

DDA – Mayor Zarus reported that he and DDA member Alvero Tueta had attended the mandatory DDA training and it was necessary to have one additional DDA member attend training. He then announced the closing of Take 2 [meeting site for DDA] and reported that DDA would begin meeting on the 3rd Friday of each month beginning at 1:30 pm at the Dragon Delight restaurant.


Scott and Crystal Harrison were not in attendance. Mayor Zarus stated that although not required by FEMA, a resolution was presented for consideration, indicating that the City was willing to acknowledge their home on Spruce Drive as being located in a flood plain. He stated that funding was not available at this time; however, there was a possibility that funding would be available under another program within the next year or two. He stated that while this Council cannot bind future Councils, the city could agree that any labor would be counted toward the required match for potential grant funds, with the Harrisons’ picking up any grant match balance required for funding. Mayor Zarus also stated that if there was acquisition of the subject property, the city would be required to pay closing costs. Several changes to the proposed resolution were discussed and the amended resolution is to be placed on the next Consent Agenda.

Discussion of Clubhouse Renovation – Council member Pitts introduced discussion of a suitable method of securing the building. A “lock box” was considered as well as a locking device with an electronic code. The Public Works Director was tasked with research on a preferred method. She then reported insufficient water pressure in the kitchen. The Public Works Director stated that the line would need to be unearthed and checked for leaks. Lastly, the paving of the garage area was discussed. Council member Pitts stated that all of the stored items would need to be relocated prior to the paving and it was determined that the piano would be declared surplus and sold. The Public Works Director reported having received an estimate for the paving of the garage area, and anticipates that work to proceed in the near future.

MARTA Memorandum of Understanding – Tabled

2011 Capital Improvement Budgets – Tabled

Award of Bid for Lake Dredging – Public Works Director Phil Howland announced that he had received word this date that the GEFA (Georgia Environmental Facilities Authority) Board had met and awarded the City of Pine Lake $1,600,000 for the dredging project. He stated that he was arranging the financing with $810,000 from DeKalb County which would be utilized as collateral for the GEFA loan. Because of ARRA (American Relief and Reinvestment Act) funding for GEFA, the City’s $1,600,000 would be a 50% payback with the other 50% forgiven. He reported there would be a $37,500 loan origination fee, for the processing of the paperwork. Mr. Howland then walked Council through the two bid proposals as well as the recommendation of bid award from the consulting engineer. He stated that to move forward in securing the $810,000 from the County he would have to issue a Notice to Proceed. He informed Council that the City Attorney had reviewed the Notice to Proceed and added language that would prohibit work from beginning on the project until funding was in place and contracts were executed. Mr. Howland stated that he anticipated presenting the contract for approval at the February 14, 20111 meeting. Mayor Zarus stated that the Notice to Proceed was a way of eliminating the contractor not selected by the City. Following review and discussion of the contract prices as well as the haul-off and disposal fees, motion to authorize execution of the Notice to Proceed was made by Mayor Pro-Tem deNobriga, seconded by Council member Creech and was approved 3-0.


Town Hall Agenda – Mayor Pro-Tem suggested limiting the agenda topics to (a) the upcoming lake dredging; (b) a question and answer session on the renovated Clubhouse; and (c) a review of the Facility Use (Rental) Policy.

Discussion of Health Insurance – Mayor Pro-Tem deNobriga stated that there had been discussion during the budget work sessions that two employees were currently receiving city paid health insurance for their dependents, which is not allowed under the City’s policies. She reminded everyone the discussions had entailed covering the dependents for the two employees for only the first quarter of the year, allowing sufficient time employees to make other arrangements for covering their dependents. After reviewing the coverage costs and the potential savings to the City, she suggested that a portion of the monies saved be utilized to fund retirement contributions by the City as outlined in the 401 Defined Contribution Plan. Mayor Zarus stated that some employees were hired with the coverage being part of their compensation package, and others not needing the coverage were paid at a higher hourly rate. Council member Creech concurred with Mayor Pro-Tem deNobriga’s plan to bring all employees in line with the city policy effective April 1st. Council member Pitts stated she agreed with an e-mail from Council member Diamond who could not be in attendance at this meeting. That e-mail indicated she would like to see the possibility of the City matching an employee’s contribution rather than a total funding of the employee’s retirement. Mayor Zarus stated that the current plan in place was for a 401 defined contribution plan which the city had agreed to fund. Council member Pitts stated it would be to the City’s advantage to be in a more financially secure position before addressing city funded retirement. It was determined this would be put to a vote at the February 14, 2011 meeting and the Clerk was instructed to prepare a budget amendment reallocating a portion of the insurance funding to retirement for consideration at the upcoming meeting.




Mayor Pro-tem deNobriga stated she would obtain a presentation folder for the resolution honoring Paul Jasionowski.

Council member Creech questioned the Special Use Permit for facility usage. Council also discussed rental time blocks and fees. Council member Pitts suggested a wedding package consisting of three consecutive time slots for a reduce rate of $300. Council concurred. She also discussed the necessity of some leeway on event parking, as parking is extremely limited.


Motion to adjourn was made by Mayor Pro-tem deNobriga, seconded by Council member Creech and was unanimously approved. 8:50 pm.



Valerie Caldwell, City Clerk