|Weekly Report for the Two Weeks Ending May 14th, 2010
May 16, 2010
Mayor and Councilmembers:
This is the weekly report for the two weeks ending May 14th, 2010.
The next City Council meeting will be a budget study session on Tuesday, May 18th from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM. The Council will reconvene for a Closed Session at 5:00 PM, followed by the regular meeting agenda at 6:30 PM.
The Richmond Civic Center Revitalization Project by Nadel Architects took top honors in the Award of Honor for "Historic Preservation and Innovation in Rehabilitation" at the American Institute of Architects (AIA) San Francisco Chapter awards gala in San Francisco last week. Earning an Award of Merit in the same category was the Ford Assembly Building Rehabilitation Project in Richmond by Marcie Wong Associates.
As you may have heard, a Superior Court Judge ruled on May 4th that California's taking of over $2 billion from redevelopment agencies known as the Supplemental Educational Revenue Augmentation Fund (SERAF) is legal. The California Redevelopment Association has filed an appeal and asked for a stay on the SERAF payments. Although the Richmond Community Redevelopment Agency will not make its $10 million payment this year, it will have to be paid before the Agency can fund new projects unless this ruling is overturned. This $10 million, and an additional $2 million due next year, would normally be leveraged with grants and private investments to create between $36 million and $48 million in projects, a good number of jobs, and increased tax rolls.
Unfortunately, the State has taken the unwise policy of taking the best economic stimulus dollars out of local communities when job growth is essential.
On May 14th, a major milestone regarding the restoration of the Plunge was achieved by filling the pool with water. The opening of the Plunge continues to be scheduled for late summer.
Engineering Services mailed out letters to update residents on the status of the sinkhole. The letter was also sent to Creekview Condominiums, Sobrante Glen HOA, and Westbridge Rental Townhomes. The Information Technology Department established a Via Verdi website, and Engineering Services is developing an e-mail distribution list. Other progress of note included:
The next step is an expedited bidding process to obtain bids for construction of the temporary two-lane access road.
The City of Richmond has successfully advanced to Round 2 of the State of California’s Broadband Technology Opportunities Program’s recommendation list. We are one of three cities recommended by the State of California in the Comprehensive Community Infrastructure category, with the other two cities being the City of Oakland and the City of Grover Beach. The state has recommended a total of thirty projects. The National Telecommunications and Information Administration stated that they were looking for comprehensive, regional applications that had a great deal of anchor institution support and public/private partnerships. The state’s list of recommendations include only those projects which the reviewers felt strictly adhered to the federal government’s priorities.
The Office of Neighborhood Safety (ONS), together with several faith-based organizations, is working to increase our collective abilities to reach and identify services for vulnerable children, youth and families in the City’s most vulnerable neighborhoods and communities. This collective effort is part of the Ground Zero Initiative (GZI).
Ground Zero is a grass roots movement that provides immediate help to communities in Richmond where gun violence is prevalent. With an initial outreach into a targeted area, ONS staff, local pastors and volunteers ask residents to identify and voice their neighborhood’s resource needs. The information is then collected and organized, and follow-up telephone calls are made to advise residents where the requested resources can be found in local nearby churches. There are currently more than 164 registered churches in the City of Richmond. These churches can be viable resource outlets for vulnerable individuals and communities. While providing targeted outreach in these neighborhoods, to those most likely to be involved with and/or confronted by gun violence, relationship building occurs, and an offer of care and support is provided.
Each Ground Zero event concludes with a community block party. These include live music, free food, and jumpers for kids. The first GZI outreach took place in North Richmond on Saturday, April 24th. The next is scheduled for Saturday, May 15th in South Richmond.
The nonprofit community in Richmond delivers a vast network of services aimed at surrounding our most vulnerable residents with much needed support. However, as resources become more limited, collaboration becomes essential to be truly effective.
Progress Richmond is a joint effort by select community organizations which are partnering with the Stride Center to reach Richmond residents with the highest barriers to employment. By pairing stabilization assistance with solid job training in an upwardly mobile career path, the Office of Neighborhood Safety expects to help clients achieve sustainable self-sufficiency and connection to abundance in the Bay Area.
Progress Richmond includes the following elements:
This past week, the third of seven scheduled community budget presentations was conducted for the Marina Bay Homeowner’s Association. Listed below are the remaining meeting dates and locations:
May 20th 5:30 p.m. Nevin Community Center
May 27th 7:15 p.m. Annex Senior Center
May 27th 8:00 p.m. Sojourner Truth Church
According to the Silicon Valley/San Jose Business Times (April 22nd) Sun Power is opening a new facility in Milpitas, which will employ 100 people. They also plan to add 200 people in San Jose and Richmond, about evenly split, over the next year.
The Recreation Department, in co-sponsorship with Kings of Cali (East Bay Chapter) and La Perla Restaurant of Richmond, will present the East Bay Custom, Classics and Bike show on Saturday, May 15th from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Richmond Auditorium. The free event will have food, entertainment, kids’ activities, an awards ceremony and much more. Later, a dance, for ages 21 and over, with a $15 admission fee, will be held from 6:00 PM to midnight.
Recreation has joined in on the slideshow fun and now has slideshows on their Senior, Adult, and Youth Programs pages. To view these pages follow these links:
Senior Program Link:
Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or comments about these or any other items of interest to you.
Have a great week!
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