Tom Butt for Richmond City Council The Tom Butt E-Forum About Tom Butt Platform Endorsements of Richmond Councilmember Tom Butt Accomplishments Contribute to Tom Butt for Richmond City Council Contact Tom Butt Tom Butt Archives
  E-Mail Forum
  Street Sweeping Update
March 25, 2005

Questions or complaints about street sweeping are consistently high on the list of issues about which I hear from constituents. Examples of recent question include the following:

  • I seem to recall that part of the street sweeping deal was that each block had to have a certain level of compliance (with respect to cars being moved on sweeping day) & in order to facilitate this, the sweepers were to be equipped with special camera equipment that could photograph the license plates of unmoved cars & generate tickets, revenue for the city of Richmond, & (eventually) a clear & clean street. Was I dreaming this? The reason I ask is that my next-door neighbors - they of the illegal backyard barn, too many dogs, & assorted other annoyances - have been keeping one of their cars parked, under a tarp, on the street in front of their house for about THE LAST YEAR. Perhaps the camera equipment couldn't shoot the license plate because it was obscured by the tarp? I'm loath to report this since I want to "get along" with my neighbors. But I was trusting that the enforcement mechanism of the street sweeping program would do the job for me. These neighbors have three other vehicles, one of which is now parked every night in front of my house. (Two adults live in that house w/ 4 vehicles, btw.) The segment of our street in front of their house hasn't been swept in a year. Will this go on forever? It's so very Tobacco Road. P.S., another sweeping snafu is that one side of our street is swept on garbage-pickup day, which means that the cans are in the way of the sweeper. This scheduling problem, which affects several other blocks in the N&E, has been reported to the appropriate agency & letters/phone calls have been exchanged. Despite assurances & promises, we are confident that nothing will ever, ever change.
  • When the Council has nothing more pressing to discuss, maybe you could discuss the fact that all over Richmond there are streets where street-sweeping day coincides with garbage pick-up day.  The sweepers drive down the street, but never sweep the curbs because they can't. Even if all the cars are moved from the street, the sweepers still can't sweep the curbs.  Such a waste of money. Two blocks I know of personally:  800 block of 37th St. west side and 600 block of 32nd St. west side.  I have heard there are many more.
  • I send out regular emails to 220+ residents in the Annex.  A resident just asked me about street sweeping and it reminded me to ask you about it.  Some of the streets in the annex are routinely NOT being swept while many others are being swept. Have you any information?  I have heard that Richmond was recently fined by RWQCB?  Also, apparently a recent article in the West County Times about street sweeping in Richmond ( I don’t get the paper).  Something about the Annex being on its own somehow?  I think I was probably not given the correct info by this resident.  We just have opted for no signage. Hoping for more detailed info from you.  Thanks
  • We have made several attempts to the City of Richmond to voice our concerns regarding street sweeping on our street and have not been successful in receiving any help. Kern Street, the 900 block has become a series of asphalt patches, failed street paving areas and loads of gravel and small rocks.  We have severe pot holes and failed areas that really need the city's attention.  This street really needs help. The street sweeper comes and tosses the rocks about and makes the holes deeper.  Our neighbors and I voiced concerns many times to the City.  We did note that a city employee months ago did survey the area and mark it for, of course, more patching, which was done and has failed now. 

The City has been struggling with street sweeping for years. There have been battles involving signs or no signs, the size of signs, the number of signs on a block, the location of signs, whether or not there will be fines and the coordination of street sweeping schedules with garbage pickup schedules.

The Public Services Department has recently released a comprehensive plan for street sweeping, which is in the attached files.

Willie Haywood, Deputy Public Services Director, provided the attached plan and the following information:

“We are continuing to install signs and we are now able to sweep our narrower streets since we are in receipt of the smaller Tenant sweepers. At the heart of the matter is PARKED VEHICLES. In the presentation to council, ticketing and enforcement will be outlined…We are not in the habit of making excuses and I am confident we will make this work, and it is, as we successfully swept the Parkway (in conjunction with the county) last week and will continue weekly."

“As most projects we are involved with in Operations and Maintenance (Street lights, pot holes, graffiti, blight, and street sweeping), these are our "main battery" and with our reconstituted department, we are establishing aggressive plans of actions to address these areas. I welcome and encourage all queries relative to our department.”

Rochelle Monk (Rochelle_monk@ci.richmond.ca.us), who is the “go to” person for complaints and requests regarding City Services, also notes:

“The article in the West County Times was incorrect in stating that the Richmond Annex opted out of the street sweeping program; Richmond Annex opted/petitioned for no signage.”



Street Sweeping Plan.doc

Street Sweeping Staff Report.doc