Minutes - August 4, 2003 - Committee-of-the-Whole
Minutes of the Committee-of-the-Whole Meeting
of the City Council of the
CITY OF DARIEN
AUGUST 4, 2003
CALL TO ORDER
regular meeting of the City Council of the City of Darien
was called to order at 6:30 P.M. by Mayor Carmen D. Soldato.
CONSULTANT INTERVIEW FOR BUSINESS DISTRICT DEVELOPMENT
AND REDEVELOPMENT – KANE, McKENNA AND ASSOCIATES,
Mayor Soldato thanked the Business District Development
and Redevelopment Commission for their efforts and recommendations.
He turned the meeting over to Administrator Vana, who outlined
the Commission’s accomplishments. They interviewed
four firms and prepared a recommendation for City Council
that included two firms. Administrator Vana noted that the
second interview would take place on Monday, August 11th
at 6:30 P.M. with Teska and Associates; he stated that each
interview was limited to thirty minutes and that resident
discussion would occur during a regular City Council meeting.
It was noted that in response to a request from Alderman
Poteraske and residents, this meeting was being shown live
on the Darien Cable Channel.
Administrator Vana introduced Philip R. McKenna, President
of Kane, McKenna and Associates, Inc. Mr. McKenna stated
that Kane, McKenna was in business for twenty years; they
focus on redevelopment activities including tools and techniques
that could be utilized with respect to redevelopment. He
noted that they were not planners, that the City has a Comprehensive
Plan. Kane, McKenna works with approximately 120 accounts
annually, seventy percent are municipal and thirty percent
are developer accounts. They have worked with many local
municipalities, have done over 150 TIF districts, have done
approximately 50 business districts, and have done well
over 50 sales tax sharing type agreements; they are also
a municipal bond licensed financial consulting firm.
Mr. McKenna noted that long-term objectives were as important
as short-term objectives; he said that the process was important.
He commented that in the redevelopment process, it was “What
is it that we are trying to accommodate? What are the challenges
to bringing that development in: are they front end, are
they back end, are they somewhere in between?” He
felt that the goals and objectives in the Comprehensive
Plan were well stated but would be hard to achieve; that
they could not all be achieved by virtue of a Tax Increment
Finance District. Mr. McKenna stated that a TIF District
was not the answer for everything and that other sources
of revenue with complimentary uses would need to be utilized
for full development of the site. That a “melting
pot”, which would consist of established businesses
mixed with new businesses, would need to be created.
Mr. McKenna stated that everything begins with a two-fold
analysis: what techniques are out there and do they fit,
including statutory requirements and economic underpinnings
of what was to be achieved. He said that they compliment
the study by requesting feedback from developers and by
utilizing history of sales tax information. He noted that
‘public use’ facilities do not bring in tax
dollars; he said that the market must be identified that
would compliment the facilities. Kane, McKenna suggested
that the redevelopment be done in a phased approach; that
an initial eligibility study be performed to focus on program
criteria and economics; and that the infrastructure be reviewed
to produce a recommendation report.
Mayor Soldato opened the forum for comments and questions
from the Council members.
Alderman Hagen stated that a situation occurred in Burr
Ridge regarding a TIF district; he inquired how that situation
differed from Darien’s. Mr. McKenna responded that
various improvements occurred over many years; the Appellate
Court determined that the area in Burr Ridge did not meet
the qualifications. He stated that there were three quadrants
indicated by Darien; not all of the areas of the triangle
would qualify as a TIF District; he indicated that the southeast
corner was a likely candidate.
Mayor Soldato stated that the information discussed was
the opinion of Kane, McKenna and that it could be legally
and professionally challenged.
Alderman Biehl inquired if the residential area dominated
the triangle. Mr. McKenna affirmed; he stated that consideration
would be given to reconfiguration and to the impact of relocation.
He indicated that the cost would be very expensive.
Alderman Cotten asked about Kane, McKenna’s success
based on qualifications and standards under the law; Mr.
McKenna responded that they had been challenged but have
not lost. Alderman Cotten stated that in order to make a
decision, a breakdown of the project team and their qualifications
needed to be submitted. Mr. McKenna said the information
would be forwarded to Administrator Vana for distribution.
Alderman Poteraske asked what the timeframe was for Phase
I; Mr. McKenna responded that the typical timeframe would
be 3-4 weeks. Alderman Poteraske also asked what type of
commitment and resources would be required from City and
staff to stay within the timeframe; Mr. McKenna stated that
specific historical data would be needed from staff and
fire protection districts.
Mayor Soldato noted that financing would depend on the
developer and what they expect out of the economics. He
inquired if the information received from the informal meetings
was valuable; Mr. McKenna responded that some of the information
received could be beneficial for Phases 2 and 3.
There was discussion about the Housing Impact Study,
which Kane, McKenna could perform at an additional cost,
which would be approximately $10,000. The study was not
included in the proposal due to the fact that a determination
had not been made about moving forward with relocating the
Mayor Soldato opened the floor to the audience and Commission
members for questions, there being none, Mayor Soldato then
thanked Mr. McKenna for providing the Council with the information.
There being no further business to come before the Committee-of-the-Whole,
the meeting adjourned at 7:10 P.M.
documentation and report originals of these minutes are
on file in the Office of the City Clerk under File Number
of 08-04-03 Committee-of-the-Whole