Catchup on 2021 Kettering City Council Workshop sessions


City of Kettering Ohio logo - Todd Elzey

Kettering, Ohio - The Kettering City Council typically meets on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of each month. The Council holds two types of meetings, a Council Workshop, and a regular Council meeting. Both meetings are open to the public. 

Residents who can't attend Council meetings can easily keep track of what happens in regular Council meetings because those meetings are broadcast live on Public Access Cable Channel 6, and are available to stream later from the City's website at But to be honest regular Council meetings are pretty routine and most of the Council's real work is done in the Workshop meetings.

Unfortunately, Council workshop sessions are not as easy for residents to keep track of. Although for a time during the COVID-19 Pandemic, the City was live streaming Workshop meetings via YouTube, currently the meetings are not broadcast and are not available for streaming afterward. In addition, minutes of the meeting usually are not available until at least the following Council meeting.

What happens in these meetings can be very important, and can foreshadow Council actions down the road. The Sentinel would like to give residents an opportunity to see how the Council reports on these meetings. So over the next several days, we will post the Council's minutes for all 2021 Council workshops. We have not made any spelling or grammar changes to the minutes, but the formatting may be slightly different than the version originally published by the City.

Here are the meeting minutes from the January 12, 2021, Kettering City Council Workshop Meetings. As you read these minutes, keep in mind that discussions are often more detailed than the minutes report.

January 12, 2021

The Council of the City of Kettering, Ohio, met in a workshop session on Tuesday, January 12,
2021, via video conference. Public portions of the Workshop were live streamed at Mayor Patterson called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m.

Council Members Present included Mayor Patterson, Vice Mayor Klepacz, Mr. Lautar, Mr. Duke,
Mrs. Fisher and Mr. Scott. Mr. Wanamaker had an excused absence.

Staff Members Present: City Manager Mark Schwieterman, Assistant City Manager Steve
Bergstresser, Law Director Ted Hamer, Assistant Law Director Maggie Pasqualone, GIS
Manager Andy Aidt, Parks, Recreation & Cultural Arts Director Mary Beth O’Dell and
Economic Development Manager Gregg Gorsuch.

Agenda Review – Mr. Schwieterman reviewed the agenda with members of City Council.
Concrete Repair Program – Mr. Bergstresser explained the Concrete Repair Program and overlaying bare concrete streets with asphalt. The overlay process often results in reflective cracking problems. If there is a bare concrete street, repairs are made with no overlay to avoid the issue. The additional gas tax money Kettering will receive allows re-prioritization of some
bare concrete streets including Windemere (40% complete in 2021), Hillerman and James Hill
(fully repaired in 2021) and Foxdale (40% complete this year).

Vice Mayor Klepacz asked why the City continues to patch the concrete area when the rest of
Foxdale is asphalt. Mr. Bergstresser explained that concrete repairs are more expensive but last longer than overlay.

RTA Board Appointment – During the January 26 Council meeting, Al Fullenkamp will be appointed to the RTA Board to replace Franz Hoge. A Kettering resident is appointed for a threeyear term.

Miami Valley Research Park Sale of Land – Life Connection of Ohio closed on the land at Miami
Valley Research Park and will finalize it January 13. At that time, LCO can get started on their new facility. Net proceeds from the sale should be $657,000.

Police Department Renovation Update - Phase 1 of the lower level and plaza area is complete and police operations moved back into the lower level January 12. The last phase is in process at the north end of the lower level.

Fire Department Promotion - Kris Denlinger was promoted to Captain. He will be a flex Captain in the staffing model.

Arts Center – Mrs. O’Dell presented an update on Rosewood Arts Centre. Rosewood was named after the housing plat in which the former elementary school was built. Kettering Schools has no knowledge of where the name originated other than the plat. Parks, Recreation & Cultural Arts is requesting a name modification for the facility for a new identity, fresh approach to marketing, opportunity for building naming rights and leverage for the Park Foundation renovation campaign. She presented the tagline, “The arts in Kettering – it’s who we are.”

Mr. Lautar, as a former educator, expressed his enthusiasm to proceed.

Mr. Duke inquired about varied levels of rooms to be named for people based on contributions which Mr. Schwieterman confirmed.

Mr. Scott asked about the history of assigning names. Mr. Schwieterman stated that most buildings are named more for honorary reasons; however, Fraze was named for a significant monetary contribution.

Mayor Patterson asked if a timeframe could be developed for naming the facility. Mr.
Schwieterman confirmed that a start to finish timeline would be established for this three-year campaign.

Shared Mobility Devices – Mrs. Pasqualone and Mr. Aidt presented shared mobility device information. Kettering’s one-year moratorium was put in place in February 2020, for further research. Presenters connected with Laura Estandia, Executive Director of Bike Miami Valley,
Athens, Ohio, and the Bike Committee. Micro mobility refers to small range, lightweight vehicles operating at or below 50 miles per hour. Shared mobility means the devices are owned by a company allowing customers to use for a price paid via an app. There are three different types of systems: station-based micro mobility, lock-to-hub (smart technology) and dockless mobility. Mr. Aidt stated that micro mobility is great for the last link to where people are headed. It encourages physical activity, less noise and fun. It could also take care of parking issues. There are issues with safety, aesthetics and concerns from businesses and neighbors. Only 3 related deaths in 84 million rides were reported and statistics of danger are low.

Mayor Patterson asked for a breakdown of tourist cities vs. border communities; large cities vs.
small cities. Mr. Aidt recommended starting small and getting Oakwood on board. The trend is moving so fast, there might be a niche here in Kettering according to Mrs. Pasqualone.

Mr. Duke expressed his concern for e-skateboards being ridden close to people. Mr. Aidt recommended eliminating devices if they become problematic rather than excluding them.

Mrs. Pasqualone presented three options: 1. Allow shared mobility device programs with no
regulations (the riskiest option); 2. Ban shared mobility devices (least problematic, but Kettering may miss the benefits of having them); and, 3. Allow devices and regulate their use limiting the risk. Dayton, Columbus, Cincinnati and Athens allow devices with regulation. Oakwood banned them. Mrs. Pasqualone and Mr. Aidt recommended the City allow shared mobility devices with regulations limiting them to station-based and lock-to-hub models. Companies would be required to apply for a permit, limitations would be placed on liability and the City would retain the right to suspend or deny services. The number of devices in the city would be controlled. Geofencing would allow for temporary restrictions for events such as parades or construction. Companies would be required to report different statistics to the City (i.e., how many riders, accidents, complaints, etc.)

Mrs. Fisher suggested this might help people without access to transportation.

COVID-19 Update - PRCA implemented additional programming January 11. The City’s work from home model was set to go through Monday, January 18. Mr. Schwieterman recommends extending it through the end of payroll February 28, as it is working for our employees.

Charter Review Committee – Vice Mayor Klepacz stated that forming a Charter Review
The committee might be in order. It is well within City Charter that a committee can be established at least once every ten years. In preparation for new Council members at the beginning of 2022, Vice Mayor Klepacz sees this as an opportunity to look at changes to the Charter that might be in order. Term limits need to be reviewed, as well, with the possibility of an amendment to revisit term limits.

Mr. Lautar agreed that this is an appropriate time for veteran members to analyze recommendations that might come forth.

Mr. Scott fully supports a Charter review to fix the leadership gap.

Mayor Patterson supports the review committee. Mayor Patterson stated that if someone leaves their position on Council February 1, the Charter allowed Council to re-appoint people.
Currently, Council has no ability to fill that seat until the November election. Due to the 120 day waiting period, if someone leaves in February, spring is not an option. He stated that examples like this are in need of review.

Mrs. Fisher recommended the committee be comprised of people who have varying opinions including naysayers.

Mr. Scott agreed with Mrs. Fisher’s recommendation, but he disagreed with the way she presented it.

Mr. Duke stated the Mayor should reach out to everyone in the community. Council can give the committee things to review and recommendations would come back to Council while it’s still intact.

Mr. Hamer explained that the Mayor appoints the committee and all members have to be electors of the City. Mr. Schwieterman confirmed the last Charter Review Committee met in 2016. Mayor Patterson stated that a Charter Review Committee is necessary and requested that potential names for the committee be sent to him.

The City Council Workshop Meeting was adjourned at 7:28 p.m.

Clerk of Council

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