|City Manager's Weekly Report for the Two Weeks Ending July 1st, 2011
July 2, 2011
Mayor and Councilmembers:
This is the weekly report for the two weeks ending July 1st, 2011 (Happy Fiscal New Year!).
The next meeting of the City Council will be on Tuesday, July 5th beginning with a Closed Session at 5:00 PM, and the regular agenda scheduled to begin at 6:30 PM.
On Sunday, July 3rd, from 6:30 PM to 10:00 PM, the Recreation Department will host the annual 3rd of July fireworks spectacular at Marina Bay Park. Attendees can enjoy a wonderful evening of music, featuring live performances, food, fun and a “Kids Fun Zone” with your friends, family and fellow neighbors. The Oakland East Bay Symphony will, once again, bring its melodic tones to the Craneway Pavillion, with their performance beginning at 8:00 PM. The evening will culminate with an outstanding fireworks show above the Marina.
As you know, the City of Richmond is one of the finalists to host the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s (LBNL) Second Campus at the UC Berkeley Richmond Field Station site. This is an unparalleled opportunity to bring green jobs, economic development, and countless other benefits to the Richmond community.
As part of the selection process, the City will host a welcoming reception and town hall meeting on Thursday, July 21st, from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM at the Richmond Auditorium. The reception will include light refreshments and entertainment, followed by a town hall meeting. Save the date to come join the community in showing LBNL why Richmond is the only choice for the LBNL Second Campus! Please RSVP for this event at www.ci.richmond.ca.us/lbnl. Contact the City Manager’s Office at (510) 412-2091 or (510) 621-1554 with questions.
As you have undoubtedly heard, this past Tuesday night, California lawmakers approved a budget that closes the state's nearly $10 billion shortfall a day after Governor Jerry Brown and top Democrats unveiled the legislation. With majorities in both the state Senate and Assembly, Democrats bypassed Republicans to approve the eight-bill package. Brown, who helped craft the legislation, sought to have a spending plan in place before the July 1 start of the state's new fiscal year.
Brown and fellow Democrats closed the state budget's final $10 billion hole with a combination of additional cuts to state universities and welfare programs, deferring payments to schools and making what some critics said were rosy assumptions for $4 billion in additional revenue. These assumptions of higher revenues, backed by $2.5 billion in “trigger” cuts in case some or none of that money materializes are the biggest new components of the budget. The plan requires the State Department of Finance to certify on December 15 whether the $4 billion projection is accurate. The department is required to choose between the higher of its own forecast and the Legislative Analyst’s.
The “trigger” cuts are essentially in three tiers, based on how much of the extra $4 billion comes in.
Tier 1: If the state gets $3 billion to $4 billion of the money, it will not impose additional cuts, and will roll over any balance of the problem into the 2012-13 budget.
Tier 2: If the state gets $2 billion to $3 billion of the money it will impose about $600 million of cuts and roll over the remainder into the 2012-13 budget. The $600 million in cuts include:
Tier 3: If the state gets $0 to $2 billion of the money it will then also impose as much as $1.9 billion in additional cuts, proportionate to revenues:
All cuts would take effect January 1, 2012, with the exception of the school year reduction, which districts could impose starting February 1, 2012.
The state budget included two trailer bills which will effectively shutter redevelopment agencies across the state, as described in past reports. If Governor Brown signs these bills, the California Redevelopment Association plans to immediately seek an injunction barring the state from implementing the bills.
The Notice of Preparation (NOP) for the Revised Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the Chevron Revised Renewal Project was issued on June 12th. The NOP is available on the project’s webpage at www.ci.richmond.ca.us/chevronrenewal. A meeting on the scope of the Revised EIR was held on June 22nd. Comments on the scope and content of the Revised EIR will be provided at the earliest possible date, but no later than July 12th. Comments must be in writing and sent to Lina Velasco, City of Richmond, Planning and Building Services Department, 450 Civic Center Plaza, Richmond, CA 94804, or via email at Lina_Velasco@ci.richmond.ca.us.
The Planning and Building Services Department will be hosting the first of four education sessions on key technical subjects important to the proposed Chevron Richmond Revised Renewal Project and other projects. The first of these sessions will cover the basics on how greenhouse gases (GHGs) can contribute to global climate change and how GHG emissions from proposed industrial facilities can be quantified. The session will be held at the City of Richmond in the City Council Chambers, 440 Civic Center Plaza, Richmond, CA on July 25th from 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM.
The contractor completed Phase 2 of the Carlson Boulevard improvement project last week, and the new southbound lane opened last weekend, thus restoring access to all of the side streets and Carlson residents along the west side of the street. Phase 3 will begin this week with the lowering of utilities and the grinding and recycling of asphalt. Upcoming activities will include final potholing to avoid shallow utilities during excavation followed by the overall excavation of the center roadway which will take 5 to 7 days. By that time, we will begin to see the “new Carlson” finally taking shape. Much work will follow including the new median curb and the preparation for potential landscaping.
The 17th Annual Communicator Award of Distinction program announced that the City of Richmond is a recipient of “The Award of Distinction.” This award is presented for projects that exceed industry standards in quality and achievement through communication.
The City of Richmond’s government website was recognized with an award at the 2011 Communicator Awards administered and judged by the International Academy of the Visual Arts.
As the leading awards program that honors creative excellence in communication, the 2011 Communicator Awards saw thousands of entries from across the United States and the world.
Aquatics: Over 135 visitors enjoyed $1 day on Friday, June 10th, at the Plunge, which is now open every day for swimming. (Unfortunately, the Plunge needed to be closed for several days this past week due to a pipe blockage.)
Summer Sports Camp: The Youth Sports staff will be conducting sports camps at the Booker T. Anderson Community Center and the Martin Luther King Jr. Sports Field for youth ages 6 to 14. Every two weeks, a new sports clinic will be introduced ranging from soccer, baseball, basketball, golf, volleyball, flag football and futsal.
Jr. Giants Baseball: Jr. Giants youth baseball teams have begun practicing at the Booker T. Anderson Field on Monday and Thursday afternoons, and at Nicholl Park on Tuesday and Wednesday afternoons. The program is free, and all participants receive a free glove, hat, and jersey.
FAM CAMP: Two staff members of the Youth Activities section of the Recreation Department attended a three-day camping and training program with the Outdoor Youth Connections Pacific Leaders Institute at Richardson Grove State Park on June 10th, 11th and 12th. The training prepared them to lead a FAM CAMP which will be held on August 5th through 7th at Calaveras Big Trees State Park. The training included topics such as group facilitation with diverse communities, outdoor recreation skill development, program planning, and leadership development.
Senior Center: Senior participants are witnessing significant renovations underway in the game room at the Senior Center. The carpet is being replaced with wood floors, ceiling fans are being installed, and new paint will be one of the final touches. During the remodel, participants continue to enjoy various activities in the Hawaiian room at the Richmond Auditorium.
Futsal: June 8th marked the culmination of the Adult Futsal Spring League where ten teams competed in a twelve-week program.
Activities during the past two weeks have included the following:
Photo: Ellen Gailing
Facilities Maintenance Division: This past week, the painters began painting the exterior of the Disabled People’s Recreation Center and the walls of the pool room of the Senior Center. The stationary engineers had to close the Plunge temporarily Tuesday of this week due to a major sewage blockage. Staff immediately repaired the problem, and the Plunge was reopened Thursday.
Other recent projects by the Facilities Maintenance Division have included: painting the Shields-Reid Community Center’s exterior of the restrooms; installing new ceiling fans, conducting safety repairs, including all emergency EXIT lights, at the Senior Center; replacing three traffic signal loop detectors at Macdonald and San Pablo Avenues; and repairing five bollard lights and replaced three Acorn light globes at the Barbara Vincent Park.
Streets Division: This past week, crews repaired four sections of guardrail along Hilltop Drive. With assistance from Parks and Landscaping, Equipment Services and Code Enforcement, the guardrails are as good as new.
Staff also completed potholing in the Richmond Annex, as well as various locations on the pothole list. Next week, they will resurface South 7th Street from Ohio Avenue to the end of the street.
During the prior week, Streets Crews completed resurfacing 41st Street from Florida Avenue to Wall Avenue along the new Martin Luther King, Jr. Elementary School, and Florida Avenue from 43rd to 45th Avenues. Coming soon are the resurfacing of the Nicholl Park picnic area adjacent to the Richmond Recreation Center, and pavement dig out repairs at Parchester Village.
The Sign and Lines Shop has completed the installation of the new Fred Jackson Way signs in the Iron Triangle neighborhood, and repaired the two Disabled People’s Recreation Center signs which have now been re-installed at this Center.
Parks and Landscaping Division: Staff completed irrigation repairs at Hilltop Green Park; fuel management in the VHFSZ zones of the Raincloud Park area and May Valley; vegetation management along the Richmond Parkway; prepared Marina Bay for the 3rd of July celebration and trimmed and removed multiple trees throughout the city. Next week, crews will work on the Bay Trail and Marina Bay landscape areas and continue the vegetation management on the Richmond Parkway.
During the prior week, crews completed irrigation repairs at Nicholl Park, the Civic Center, scarified baseball and softball fields; and mulched medians and shoulders along the lower end of Cutting Boulevard.
Equipment Service Division: Crews received and prepared for service a new ball field seed spreader machine to reseed all ball fields during the fall seasons. They also tested all emergency generators throughout the city.
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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 and a Fabulous Fourth!
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