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Recap of 9/26 City Council Meeting
** (note: following are highlights only; for more detailed information, please see meeting minutes)
Closed Session was held prior to the Council's regular meeting -- No reportable action
The City Council presented the Novato High School Varsity Girls Lacrosse Team & Coach Rory Daily with a proclamation recognizing their athletic achievements which include becoming the first California girls lacrosse team to be ranked in the Nation's top 20 and ranked as 1st in the Western United States at the completion of the 2017 season.
MarinMOCA's Executive Director Nancy Rehkopf gave a presentation to the Council which highlighted MarinMOCA's upcoming programs and goals for 2018.
CONSENT CALENDAR - Council approved all items with the following exception - Councilmember Lucan recused himself from Items 4 and 7
Item 6 - Via resolution, purchase of Axon Enterprise body worn and mobile audio video camera technology package and amend budget resolution #2017-39 to revise budget appropriations and use of funds as needed
Item 7 - Accept a $500,000 One Bay Area Grant for the Downtown SMART Phase III project by adopting a Standard Metropolitan Transportation Commission Resolution of Support for the Downtown SMART Phase III Project to program the project into the Federal Transportation Improvement Plan (FTIP)
Item 8 - Adopt a resolution to submit to the Metropolitan Transportation Commission a list of current Capital Improvement Projects that are eligible for a new Roadway Maintenance and Rehabilitation Account (RMRA) gas excise tax funding for Fiscal Year 2018/19
Item 9 - Appointment of City Treasurer
Item 10 - Terminate existing Consulting Service Agreement with Carducci & Associates Inc. And enter into an interim Consultant Service Agreement with Carducci & Associates Inc. for the Hill Recreation Area / Margaret Todd Senior Center Master Plan and Design; CIP Project No. 01-005
- Terminate the existing contract between the City of Novato and Breneman, Inc. For construction of the Bahia Mini Parks CIP Project #15-004,
- Execute a three-party tender agreement with McNabb Construction and American Contractors Indemnity Company, and
- Execute a standard construction contract with McNabb Construction to complete the remaining work on the Bahia Mini Parks CIP Project #15-004
Item 12 - Adoption of an ordinance amending the Novato Municipal Code to add Section 4-19 (Electric Vehicle Charging Systems) setting forth procedures for expediting permit processing for electric vehicle charging systems and finding that adoption thereof is exempt from the requirements of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), pursuant to CEQA Guidelines Sections 15268 and 15061(b)(3)
Council held a public hearing and introduced an ordinance amending Chapter 18 of the Novato Municipal Code that restricts recreation vehicles from parking, stopping and standing on the streets of Novato. Adoption of the ordinance is scheduled for October 10, 2017. Additionally, Council directed staff to perform research addressing parking of vehicles weighing 10,000 pounds or less on City streets and resources for the homeless. Staff will return with this information at a future meeting.
Currently under the Novato Municipal Code, recreational vehicles (RV) and trailers are allowed to remain parked on a City street for up to 72 hours, and commercial vehicles weighing more than 10,000 pounds are allowed to park up to one hour any time within a residential district and up to one hour from 7am-7pm without restriction overnight in commercial/industrial districts.
Council held a public hearing and introduced an ordinance amending the Novato Municipal Code to add a new Section 7-9 (Shopping Cart Containment and Retrieval), relocate existing Section 1-7 (Graffiti Prevention and Abatement) to new Section 7-9, and modify Table 2-7 of the Zoning Code to remove a requirement for grocery stores to obtain a Use Permit to provide shopping carts, establishing a fee for administrative costs for City retrieval and disposal of abandoned shopping carts and finding that adoption thereof is exempt from the requirements of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), pursuant to CEQA Guidelines Section 15061(B)(3). Adoption of the ordinance is scheduled for October 10, 2017.
At its meeting of June 21, 2016, the City Council directed staff to analyze the issue of abandoned shopping carts and to propose enforcement options. Numerous California communities have adopted enforcement ordinances consistent with Sections 22435-22435.8 of the California Business and Professions Code which provides for the impoundment, retrieval and disposal of shopping carts that have been abandoned or removed from the owners’ premises without authorization. Visual surveys of areas around grocery stores and pharmacies identified dozens of abandoned carts present each day in Novato, particularly at bus stops. The City spends considerable time dealing with abandoned carts.
On August 24, 2017, the City took possession of the Lieb Property at 1519, 1521 and 1525 Hill Road. Staff has since performed an initial assessment of the immediate needs of the structures and the property and is now requesting funds for initial maintenance work needed at the site. While the previous owners left the site in relatively good condition, there are several areas of concern that staff recommends addressing this year. Securing the site is a priority as the site is now vacant.
There are three initial areas of concern. The walnut trees along Hill Road, and several eucalyptus trees at the rear of the site present potential safety concerns, and significant pruning is recommended by a certified arborist. The site also has three old underground fuel tanks that were recommended for removal. And, the site is currently served by a shallow hand-dug well near Arroyo Avichi Creek that is not anticipated to adequately serve the property with irrigation and domestic water (considering the anticipated Community Garden site).
Council received a presentation and provided direction to staff to begin the outreach and information gathering on options for the renovation and reuse of the historic train depot and City-owned Depot Lot in Downtown Novato with cost for this initial process not to exceed $50,000. (Councilmember Lucan recused himself from this item)
On June 27, 2017, the City Council requested staff to agendize an item to “develop options and a plan of action to renovate and reuse the Historic Depot located at Railroad and Grant Avenues in Downtown Novato.” The item originated as a request by Councilmember Eklund during the review of third quarter agenda items for upcoming Council meetings. With the recent start of SMART passenger service and the anticipated completion of the Downtown SMART station expected in mid-2019, staff would like to explore options for the renovation and reuse of the City-owned Depot and site (“Depot Lot”) to activate this new gateway into the Downtown.
a. Proposed Agenda Item from Councilmember Eklund (Councilmember Fryday recused himself from this item):
Discuss and consider to reduce MarinMOCA’s payments to the City of Novato for space occupied at the Hamilton Art Center or assist in increasing their annual revenue by any of the following and/or other options:
- Reduce the current space rent paid by MarinMOCA at the Hamilton Art Center.
- Provide an annual payment to MarinMOCA for current services rendered (e.g. placing art in City buildings, teaching art at schools, providing public art, etc...)
- Increase the number of artist studios currently managed by MarinMOCA from 14 to at least 28 total studios.
- Other options brought forth by the City Manager or the public.
b. Proposed Agenda Item from Councilmember Eklund:
“Discuss and take action on changing our policies and procedures for closed sessions” including, but not limited to: a) whether closed sessions should be recorded; b) what issues to be discussed in closed sessions; c) whether the City Council should adopt policies that are stricter than the Brown Act for the purposes of holding a closed session; d) who approves placing items on closed sessions; and, e) any other issues related to closed sessions that may come up in the discussion.
On January 12, 2016, the City Council approved discussing and taking action on changing our policies and procedures for closed sessions. As of today, this agenda item has yet to be scheduled. Proposed date to be placed on the City Council Agenda: October 24, 2017
c. Proposed Agenda Item from Councilmember Drew: (This item was withdrawn by Councilmember Drew)
“I propose that the current copy of the Council Agenda Schedule that the staff is using be emailed to council members at the same time the agenda is posted. This Council Agenda Schedule could be marked DRAFT as well as being labeled “Internal Planning Document – Subject to Change – Not for Distribution”.
Items a and b received support for agendizing on a future meeting schedule. Item c was withdrawn by Councilmember Drew and not discussed.
Upcoming meeting: Tuesday, October 10 at 6pm