May 26 2016

Drop your unstamped Ballot in the new Ballot Drop Box added to the center of Piedmont next to the mailboxes and library book drop box on Highland Way.

Ballot Drop Box

Ballot Drop Box on Highland Way in the Center of Piedmont

Ballot Drop Box

Ballot Drop Box on Highland Way

June 7, 2016 – Last Day to Vote

Submitting Stamped Ballots Through the US Postal Service:

Vote-by-Mail Ballots must be postmarked on or before Election Day and received by the Registrar of Voters office no later than 3 days after Election Day.

Submitting Ballots Without Postage:

Vote-by-Mail voters who do not want to mail in their ballot can DROP their voted ballots in the 24-hour outdoor Ballot  drop-off box in Piedmont behind the Wells Fargo Bank on Highland Way.  (Ballot Box is pictured in the photos above.)

Other 24-hour outdoor Ballot  drop-off boxes are in downtown Oakland at the corner of 12th Street and Oak Street or at the ramp at 1225 Fallon Street.  There is also a Ballot drop-off box inside the courthouse next to the Sheriff’s check-in station, Monday – Friday 8:30am – 5:00pm.

Deliver in Person:

On Election Day, June 7, Ballots may be dropped off at any polling place in Piedmont or Alameda County from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. 

Vote-by-Mail Ballots may currently be delivered in person to the Registrar of Voters Office 1225 Fallon Street during business hours; 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday.

May 26 2016

Councilmember Bob McBain and Vice Mayor Jeff Wieler in last week’s Piedmonter severely criticized former Councilmember Garrett Keating and Piedmont resident Rick Schiller’s opposition and analysis of the June 7 City parcel tax, Measure F, for concluding that a 30% parcel tax increase (never mentioned in the ballot summary or “impartial” City Attorney analysis) is unnecessary.   Just as Schiller had warned in 20­12 that the proposed $11 million Measure A Sewer Tax was unnecessary, he has once more informed voters of Measure F failings. 

Who should we believe?

The 2011 Municipal Tax Review Committee including the  Bob McBain­ and Ryan Gilbert, Sewer Sub­committee, recommended a $11 million Sewer Tax increase, but Gilbert withdrew his support when public documents disclosed no factual or legal justification for the tax.   However, McBain and Wieler remained fervent Sewer Tax supporters.

McBain signed the Sewer Tax ballot arguments and Wieler vigorously continued support for the Sewer Tax, however informed Piedmont voters soundly defeated the new Sewer Tax.

Wieler then predicted disaster, writing in The Piedmont Post, page 21, February 29, 2012: “Unfortunately, without the additional revenue that Measure A [Sewer Tax] would have provided, it is impossible to imagine how the remaining unimproved 40% of Piedmont’s sewer system can be rehabilitated in the next 10 years.”

McBain’s and Wieler’s predictions predictably crashed.     Schiller had been right.

On Oct. 6, 2014, the Piedmont City Council, with Councilmember McBain and Vice Mayor Wieler voting yes, loaned $800,000 from other City funds to the Sewer Fund to complete the sewer rehab. The failed Measure A Sewer Tax was needed only in McBain’s and Wieler’s thoughts.

While promoting a stunning 30% parcel tax increase in Measure F, the team of Wieler and McBain should provide a credible explanation for their past performance before denigrating Keating and Schiller.

Thomas D. Clark, Piedmont Resident

Editors’ Note:  Opinions expressed are those of the author.  PCA does not support or oppose ballot measures and accepts opinions both pro and con.

May 26 2016

Report listing priorities presented by the Capital Improvement Projects Review (CIP) Committee to the City Council at their Budget Workshop on May 21, 2016  for potential funding. –

2016-2017 Capital Improvement Projects Committee  – Bobbe Stehr, Chairman

The Capital Improvement Projects (CIP) committee reconvened in February 2016 to begin work on project recommendations to the City Council regarding community needs and desires for new capital projects for the 2016-2017 budget cycle. At our first meeting, City Manager Paul Benoit and Councilman Bob McBain discussed the current and future direction of the committee’s responsibilities and the committee’s outreach efforts to compile a list of new capital projects that would be considered by the Council as funding opportunities became available, whether through City funding sources or grants.

After considerable discussion by the committee members, we recognized that under the new direction of the City Council, our responsibility was to conduct an extensive outreach process, inviting participation by individuals, citizen groups, commissions and City staff. The process included an on- line proposal form on the City’s website. The Committee also developed a list of criteria to be used for evaluating all proposed projects and provide specific conclusions with recommendations for future planning.

Under this new direction, the committee reviewed all new proposals; projects submitted through the on-line proposal form as well as long standing projects that have remained on the list. We considered all public comments and staff evaluations. All of our meetings were noticed to the public and our on-site tour of the proposed project locations occurred on May 7, 2016.

Our criteria for evaluating and recommending potential projects included such factors as wide benefit to the community, public safety, broad public support, and protecting and enhancing community assets. The committee also considered whether projects had funding options from public and private partnerships, revenue generating potential, expanded recreational opportunities and/or tied into the Bike and Pedestrian Master Plan.

We have listed every proposed project in priority order. There were four proposals that we concluded were actually not CIP projects, which we referred to the proper departments and have included those in the addendum.

We would like to express our gratitude for the initial guidance provided by City Administrator, Paul Benoit and Councilman Bob McBain; vital assistance from Parks & Projects Manager, Nancy Kent; very thoughtful and perceptive understanding of Piedmont’s extensive recreation needs by Recreation Director, Sara Lillivand and insights provided by our City Council liaison, Jeff Wieler.

Project recommendations listed in order of priority with estimated costs:

1. Coaches Field Master Plan $50,000

The goal of the master plan would be to assess the possibility of expanding the playfield area to maximize the use where a larger field would meet more demand; define the technical needs associated with artificial turf; research “dark sky” directional lighting to extend use time; and address the serious parking shortage.

Believing that it is more efficient to work with an existing facility and because this field is heavily used by several sports, expansion to a regulation under 14-sized soccer field would allow concurrent practice by more than one team at a time.

This field does provide some revenue-generation and does have public interest for cooperative private funding. It would also allow for more “home team” use and spirit.

2. Beach Tot Lot/ADA Compliant Howard Ave Entrance and Restroom Facilities Master Plan $30,000

The goal of the master plan would be to review existing facilities, solicit community input and propose a new layout for improved recreational opportunities at the existing Tot Lot area and the unused space around the restroom facilities, and the space between the Oakland Ave Bridge and the Beach Playfield.

The current Tot Lot is used heavily by residents and the City recognizes the need to maintain tot lot facilities for the neighborhood. In its current location and configuration, the tot lot is unsafe with an unguarded retaining wall and outdated play equipment. An overall study of the most efficient use of the space now occupied by the Tot Lot and its situation with the tennis court, playfield and restrooms, plus access to and from each component would improve the flow and maximize the future use of the area.

The Recreation Director has requested that the Tot Lot not be looked at in isolation, but incorporated into an overall, long-range vision for the area, which may include relocation to the other side of the playfield. This would put the play area closer to the existing restrooms and eliminate the sand creep onto the tennis courts.

Additionally, with the completion of the new townhouses at 408 Linda Ave, it would be a great opportunity for the City to improve the use, aesthetics and functionality of the area between the Oakland Ave Bridge and Linda Beach Field.

In the current budget, Public Works is in the planning stage for the ADA access from Howard Ave and the City is currently reviewing all play structures in the City for safety compliance as well as a schedule for play equipment replacement. This is the time for a Master Plan for this area.

3. Piedmont Community Hall – Entry Court Renovation, $200,000 – $300,000

Parking and ADA access are the urgent needs for this facility and a top priority for the Recreation Department. The recommendation is to enhance the entry court for ceremonial and civic events with decorative paving and improved event lighting. The plan would redirect service vehicles to the edge of the turnaround and relocate the trash area, eliminating the need for heavy trucks to cross the entry court. 2

Currently the City Engineer is working on a survey of the parking possibilities and ADA access. If feasible, the committee recommends that the entry court be upgraded sooner rather than later.

4. Piedmont Community Hall – Rear Balcony and Amphitheater Architectural Master Plan $50,000

Because the Community Hall is in full use nearly daily, an architectural master plan would study and propose enhancements that would improve use, circulation and revenue generation.

Expanding the terraces and rear balcony of Community Hall over enlarged space beneath, would greatly improve the rental opportunities and community programs use with the inclusion of indoor/outdoor access.

Relocating the pre-school facilities to a more easily accessible location would free the lower level of the Hall and provide space for concurrent facility use, better storage and increased rental revenues.

The Amphitheater currently is over impacted and underutilized. An upgrade to permeable paving with current water catchment technology would be both environmentally smart and revitalize the overall area. Relocating the bleachers and access from both stories of the Hall to the amphitheater would connect this space to the interior spaces for better flow and function.

Community Hall is a perfect venue for public/private funding.

5. Oakland Avenue Bridge – Complete the String of Lights $40,000

This is a new proposal by William Blackwell who has done extensive research on both the engineering requirements to add two new light standards, suppliers for exact matches to the existing light standards and the infill string of lights. This definitely qualifies as a stand-alone project to revive what was once a stately entrance to the City of Piedmont.

This is a project that would attract private funding from several sources.

Both Mr. Blackwell and the CIP committee independently came to the same conclusion while on site at the bridge. The Oakland Avenue Bridge is in dire need of some safety improvements. Crossing Oakland Avenue at the crosswalks at both ends of the bridge on the way to or from the Beach playfield area is hazardous.

The CIP committee suggests that the safety issues be included in the future implementation of the Bike/Pedestrian Plan or as part of the Master Plan for the Beach Playfield project.

6. Highland Strip $200,000

Because of the recent wet winter, momentum has stalled for a drought tolerant and native garden to replace the lawn at the intersection of Sheridan Avenue and Highland Avenue. There were regional interests to fund parts of this project, however, much more education and outreach appears to be needed.

7. Dracena Park: Upper Park Master Plan, Ravine Lighting and Pathway improvements $30,000 – $75,000

Proposed by Garrett Keating, Daniel Stein and John Lambert, the three elements were considered individually.

A Master Plan for Upper Dracena Park, especially one that can be implemented incrementally, could be valuable, however, the CIP Committee would need further direction from the Park Commission and we suggested that the proposal be presented to the Park Commission.

Pathway lighting within City parks has been discussed over the years and current policy is not to have artificial lighting from dusk to dawn at most locations.

The request to repair the sidewalk along Dracena Avenue, add handrails and clearly marked crosswalk painting at the intersection of Park Way and Dracena Avenue have been referred to Public Works Maintenance Department.

8. Blair Park: Split Rail Fence, Additional Trees, Parking Lot $65,000 – $100,000

Two separate proposals were reviewed together: Marge Blackwell proposed a split-rail fence along Moraga Avenue for the length of the park and additional planting within the park; Melanie Robertson proposed new trees along Moraga Avenue and a small parking lot for park users.

A split rail fence could be a charming addition and more trees in a park would be wonderful. However, the site does not currently have any water supply that would be needed to irrigate new landscaping and the estimated cost of a new water meter is $65,000. In addition, the City is in the process of having the park’s boundaries surveyed and the CIP committee concluded that any project in Blair Park should be put on hold for the present and would likely need to be considered by the Park Commission at some future date.

ADDENDUM TO CIP RECOMMENDATIONS FOR 2016-2017:

Two proposals submitted by Paul Lettieri and Tom Gandesberg requested repaving for safety and bike access. These were referred to the Public Works Maintenance Department and are currently being implemented.

Tom Gandesberg also suggested better irrigation for the median in the 300 block of San Carlos Avenue. Again, this location is currently being upgraded to a more water efficient irrigation system as part of the City’s cyclical review of medians,

Bob Kunselman proposed a new License Plate Reader on Trestle Glen Road. Parks and Projects Manager, Nancy Kent contacted Police Chief Rikki Goede for guidance on this. Chief Goede contacted Mr. Gandesberg and provided the CIP committee with her determination.

I wrote a thank you letter to each person who proposed a project, stating the CIP committee’s appreciation for their suggestions and informing them of the status of each proposal.

Bobbe Stehr, Chair of CIP Committee

_______________________

Recordings  and minutes of the CIP meetings are not available, as no recordings or minutes were produced.

Residents interested in providing input to the Council on Budget priorities may send emails to John Tulloch, City Clerk:

jtulloch@piedmont.ci.ca.us

Next Council consideration of the 2016-17 Budget is June 6, 2016, at 7:30 p.m. City Hall.  The Council meeting will be recorded and broadcast.

____________

Members of the CIP Committee are:

Michael Henn

Susan Herrick

Bobbe Stehr, Chair

Jamie Totsubo

PBF (Piedmont Beautification Foundation)      Representative – Deborah Van Nest

Representative of Recreation Commission

Representative of Park Commission 

Council Liaison: Jeff Wieler (H) 428-1648
Staff Liaisons: Chester Nakahara (W) 420-3061 & Nancy Kent (W) 420-3064

May 24 2016

Councilmembers Wieler and McBain accuse Measure F opponents of misrepresenting the facts and direct voters go to the city website for more information.

We encourage voters to do so as well, and we provide the following references to help voters learn the facts.  We summarize Wieler and McBain’s arguments and hope voters will visit the links to determine what information is accurate.

 ___________
1.    Wieler and McBain claim that the 2007, 2011 Municipal Tax Review Committee (MTRC)and 2015 Budget Advisory and Financial Planning Committee (BAFPC) recommend that the City establish reserves.  True. But MTRC 2007 and 2011 did not advocate for a tax increase like the BAFPC does.  Rather these committees recommend spending controls – 2007 MTRC proposed a trigger mechanism to NOT levy the parcel tax based on property and transfer tax revenues (http://www.ci.piedmont.ca.us/wp-content/uploads/2007/10/mtrc-report.pdf, p.46) and the 2011 MTRC proposed a cap on employee benefit levels (http://www.ci.piedmont.ca.us/html/govern/staffreports/09-06-11/mtrc.pdf, p.6).
Rather than propose to raise taxes, these committees saw that the City could budget conservatively and put away reserves when the real estate market was good.  Since 2012, Council has followed this sound advice by transferring $3M to the facility maintenance fund.
 ________
2.    Wieler and McBain claim the recommendations of the 2011 MTRC have been accomplished.  False.  The MTRC recommended a cap of employee benefit levels (pension and health benefits), a “mission critical” analysis of City services and staffing levels and establishment of a facility maintenance fund (http://www.ci.piedmont.ca.us/html/govern/staffreports/09-06-11/mtrc.pdf, p. 7, 28, 42). Since 2013, the City has reduced the growth rate of its annual pension payments by requiring that employees share increases in CalPERS rates.   To cap health benefits, the 2015 BAFPC proposes a “cafeteria” benefits plan (http://www.ci.piedmont.ca.us/html/govern/staffreports/2015-12-07/parceltaxreport.pdf, p.5). Council has yet to act on that. The facility maintenance fund has been established and $1M has been spent on projects like electrical upgrades and there’s $2M in reserve for leaky roofs  (http://www.ci.piedmont.ca.us/html/govern/staffreports/2016-02-16/midyearfiscal.pdf, p.7).  The analysis of City services and staffing levels has not been undertaken.
 ___________
3.    Wieler and McBain claim the cafeteria benefits plan is “irrelevant”.  False.  Adoption of such a plan for City employees is recommended by the 2015 BAFPC (2015 BAFPC, p.5) and the substantial savings that would be achieved are documented in the report. Wieler and McBain claim such savings will help control personnel costs but can’t be used for facility maintenance; this assertion ignores the fungible characteristic of the City budget. Annual savings in employee benefits costs will be available for transfer to facility and equipment reserves – this is in part how the current facility maintenance fund has grown to $2M.  The current contract with city employees expires in June 2017 and now is the time for Council to adopt the cafeteria plan in the next contract.
 _____________
4.    Wieler and McBain claim the Athletic Facilities Maintenance Fund (AFMF) and SchoolMates Fund can’t be used for facility maintenance. False.  The AFMF was used for the resurfacing of Linda Beach Field and just last month $200,000 was allocated from this fund for Hampton Field maintenance (http://www.ci.piedmont.ca.us/html/govern/staffreports/2016-04-18/hamptonpark.pdf, p.5).  The SchoolMates Fund has always been used for upkeep of those buildings.
 ___________
5.    Wieler and McBain claim $450K is insufficient for annual facility maintenance. False. This is the average level of facility maintenance spending determined by the 2011 MTRC and 2015 BAFPC.  Costs for long-term deferred maintenance are currently being refined by City staff (2105 BAFPC, p. 24).  When finished, there likely will be a need to allocate more funds for facility maintenance but the extent to which the parcel tax needs to be raised will depend on whether the cost saving recommendations of the MTRC and BAFPC are implemented.
 ___________
6.    Wieler and McBain claim the $11M pension surplus shouldn’t be used for facility maintenance. True, but that’s a claim opponents never made (http://www.piedmontcivic.org/2016/05/15/election-opinion-piedmont-voters-should-not-approve-an-increase-in-the-parcel-tax/).  Opponents said these funds could be used for the increasing CalPERS pension obligation that the City faces.  Instead, Wieler and McBain claim these funds should be used to pay for long-term underfunded retiree health benefits. Either way, upcoming negotiations that cap benefit levels will add to the growing surplus.
 ____________
7.    Beyond our analysis of cost, we have always maintained that City revenues are more than sufficient and enjoy regional upward pressure on a continued robust revenue stream. Wieler and McBain are entirely mute on this important half of the tax equation.  The 2015 BAFPC Report (p.11) uses a 15 year time frame for the Transfer Tax, going from $2,287,982 to $3,901,252 and the Report states a 4.3% compound annual increase.  Proponents then state the erratic nature of the Property Transfer Tax yet ignore the 35 year history of the transfer tax. 1980 – 2015 the compounded annual rise is 6.45% annually.  We estimated the transfer tax in five years at $3.8 Million and we use Proponents conservative $2.8M estimate as a starting point rather than the last five-year $3.3M average.  No one can question the robust nature of the ever growing Property Tax. From 2001 to 2015 the tax grew at a compound rate of 5.1% with no down years. We estimate property tax revenue at $13.9M in five years. Proponents make no comment.
 ____________
8.   Critically, Wieler and McBain fail to mention the $1.3M additional available funds coming online in 2020 when the Pension Side Fund debt ends.
_____________

Wieler and McBain accuse Measure F opponents of inaccuracies and misinformation, but voters can judge for themselves by reading the reports.  These reports call for two basic actions by City Council – the capping of benefit levels and the establishment of facility maintenance reserves.  The extent to which a parcel tax increase is needed will depend on whether the City adopts the cost-saving measures recommended by the MTRC and BAFPC. 

Garrett Keating, Former Piedmont Councilmember 

 Rick Schiller, Piedmont Resident
Editors’ Note: Opinions expressed are those of the authors.  PCA does not support or oppose ballot measures and accepts both pro and con opinions.
May 24 2016

Piedmont’s taxpayers have paid over $2 Million in excessive costs for City projects due to poor management ($1.3 M from the Undergrounding fiasco, $400,000 from Blair Park’s so-called “gift,” $340,000 from purchasing police radios that are incompatible with Alameda County).

While the City has some new senior-level employees, the consequence of past incompetence requires greater disclosure and transparency to re-establish taxpayer confidence that Measure F’s increase in taxation is really necessary.  Measure F asks for a 30% tax increase without specifying what exactly would be done, while  underestimating property tax revenues in spite of a 25-year trend of increasing revenue.

Approval from two-thirds of the electorate should require two ballot measures, one to maintain service at the current tax rate, and another to increase service with specific projects at an increased tax rate.

If Piedmont voters reject Measure F now, the pair of measures could be placed on the November ballot without danger of current services being interrupted, because the existing tax doesn’t expire until June, 2017.

Bruce Joffe, Piedmont Resident

Editors’ Note: Opinions expressed are those of the author.  PCA does not support or oppose ballot measures.
May 24 2016

City Announces the Volunteer of the Year –

On May 19, 2016, at the City’s annual Volunteer Reception, Carla Betts was presented with the 2016 Civic Volunteer of the Year Award by Mayor Margaret Fujioka. The award is given to a Piedmonter who has made significant cultural, political, health, safety, environmental, recreational, and/or social contributions that have enriched the community.

For nearly 20 years, Carla Betts has been instrumental in organizing Piedmont’s 4th of July parade and the Celebration in the Park, serving as chair of the 4th of July Committee since the year 2000. Annually, thousands of residents come together to celebrate our nation’s independence. Mrs. Betts and her team of dedicated volunteers work tirelessly each year to ensure that the 4th of July celebration is a high quality event, enjoyed by residents of all ages. Carla’s attention to detail and organizational acumen are evident in the parade each year, with a wide variety of neighborhood floats, entries from local groups, and parade favorites such as the Balloon Platoon and the Zenith New Orleans Parade Band participating. Carla was instrumental in organizing the fiftieth anniversary of the 4th of July parade and deserves credit for the phenomenal success of this landmark event.

“Carla Betts exemplifies the spirit of Piedmont, volunteering countless hours each year to ensure that the 4th of July celebration is a success,” said Mayor Margaret Fujioka. “It is my hope that Carla’s example of service and selection as Civil Volunteer of the Year will inspire others to volunteer for the greater good of our community now and in the future.”

Mrs. Betts works behind the scenes each year with the 4th of July Committee to recruit judges and parade participants, ensure the budget for the celebration is managed well, and coordinate with City staff and the press. In addition to her service on the 4th of July Committee, Mrs. Betts, a long time resident of our community, has generously given of her talents over the years including service on the Recreation Commission, as a Scrip Volunteer for the Piedmont Educational Foundation, and in countess other ways.

May 23 2016

                   Piedmont School Board REGULAR MEETING  –     Wednesday, May 25, 2016, 7:00 p.m.
Council Chambers, City Hall 120 Vista Avenue, Piedmont Regular Session: 7:00 p.m. Public Meeting – Broadcast live on Cable Channel 27 and on City website under online videos – School Board

>>>AGENDA INCLUDES:
VI.A. Facilities Master Plan Steering Committee – The PUSD Facilities Steering Committee (comprised of community members and staff) will present its recommendation regarding the scope and prioritization of the facilities master plan, as well as the amount the Board should seek in a Facilities Bond for the November 2016 election.

Background on Steering Committee Recommendations
Steering Committee Recommendation
VI.B. Board Policy and Administrative Regulation 6158.1 – Physical Education Independent Study

1. Background PE Independent Study
2. BP 6158.1 Physical Education Independent Study Program
3. AR 6158.1 Physical Education Independent Study Program
VI.C. Elementary Instructional Program Design

The Board is asked to adopt the following contract language and bell schedule change that will enable the development of a new daily instructional schedule for the three elementary schools.

Contract Language
Article VI – Hours and Professional Responsibility
A.3. Professional Day
At the elementary level, a full-time teaching position shall consist of direct instruction based on state mandated instructional levels with an average of 3040 minutes of preparation time per day.

Bell Schedule

Early start (8:00am) for the elementary Instrumental Music Program.

Background on Elementary Program Design
VI.D. Approve Contract Agreement Between the District and the Association of Piedmont Teachers (APT) 2016-17

The Board will review the tentative agreement for the contract between the District and APT from July 1, 2016 through June 30, 2017. The community will have an opportunity to comment prior to Board action. It is recommended that Board approve the contract as presented and ratified by APT.

Attachments:
Background APT contract
May 23 2016

The next meeting of the Piedmont Public Safety Committee is on Thursday, May 26 in the Council Chambers of City Hall at 5:30 pm.

On the agenda:

  • Approval of 3/31/16 minutes
  • Introduction of New PSC members Lori Elefant and Lynne Wright
  • Confirm PSC Meeting schedule
  • Update on AC Alert/(Everbridge) Emergency Notification System Transition
  • Update on Ace Hardware initiative
  • Review of Fire Extinguisher Training event
  • Update on presentation of PSC Annual Report to City Council
  • School Liaison update
  • Discussion of Distribution of  Get Ready, Piedmont Guides and Checklists
  • Discussion of Promotion of Neighborhood meetings
  • Discussion of October Fire Department Open House/Earthquake awareness event
  • Discussion of 1st quarter Crime Report

All members of the public can speak to items on the agenda or bring up a new issue or idea under Public Forum.  The meeting will not be broadcast on KCOM or the city’s website.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

DRAFT – Abreviated 
PUBLIC SAFETY COMMITTEE MINUTES
for Thursday March 31, 2016

Chairman Shaffer called the meeting to order at 5:30 p.m.

Committee Members: Scott Fitzgerrell, Ryan Gilbert, Garrett Keating, Sue Lin, Andrea Swenson, Lyman Shaffer, Police Chief Rikki Goede, Fire Chief Bud McLaren.

Absent: Michael Gardner
There were no speakers for the public forum.

 

Chairman Shaffer introduced Mary Beth Russell of Dudley Avenue who brought forth an idea to partner with Ace Hardware to allow residents to purchase disaster supplies for their homes. Ms. Russell, indicated that she, along with Mr. Shaffer, and Chief McLaren went to Ace Hardware to seek assistance with putting together a disaster kit that residents could purchase, indicating that Ace was generous enough to offer a 20% discount on the supplies needed for a grab- and-go bag. Mr. Shaffer indicated that he worked with with the Piedmont Post to create a piece that would contain a list of the supplies needed for a grab and go kit. The committee thanked Ms. Russell for the suggestion and her work on implementing it.

Chief of Police Rikki Goede announced that crime had decreased by 7%, representing an annual decrease for the third year in a row. She stated burglaries had decreased by 36% but reminded the Council that larceny crimes were the biggest issue. She highlighted the benefits of using Automated License Plate Recognition (ALPRs) and a watchfull citizenry. She discussed actions that residents and companies can take to deter property crimes. She also indicated that the City was working with contractors to help reduce thefts from construction sites. Chief Goede commended the work of the Department’s officers, detectives and dispatchers.

Chief Goede updated the committee on the transition of emergency notifications from CodeRed to the countywide AC Alert System. She indicated that the cost for the first year of the new system was being covered by grant funding and that there is likely grant funding secured for the second year. She advised all residents to sign up for the new system, and explained some of the benefits of the new system. She described the efforts to get residents to sign up for the AC Alert system, including coordination with the Piedmont Unified School District, a flyer in garbage bills, and a public service announcement on KCOM.

Chief McLaren advised the Committee that the City Council approved the updated Emergency Operations Plan in February. He described the substance of the plan and the annexes that remained to be completed. He discussed the nature of the Emergency Operations Center (EOC), how information will come from the parts of the City to the EOC and how the City’s need will be transmitted to the county and the state.

Chairman Shaffer reviewed the type and number of Neighborhood Public Safety meetings held so far in 2016 as well as meetings scheduled for later in the year. He described the outreach made to the community to generate interest in having a meeting in their neighborhood, including to neighborhoods that have met in the past.

The Committee discussed the outreach regarding the Map Your Neighborhood program and that additional outreach is needed.

Chairman Shaffer advised the committee that the updated “Get Ready, Piedmont!” guide had been printed and was being distributed to residents. He thanked Committee Member Scott Fitzgerrell for his work in designing the guide. He stated that 500 copies were printed and that they were available in the Fire Department. The Committee discussed possible funding for additional printings of the guide and advised the Committee that the Piedmont Citizens Task Force Against crime had donated $5,000 to fund the printing of the guides.

The Committee discussed a request by a local realtor to distribute the checklists to her approximately 200 customers in Piedmont. The Committee agreed that if the realtors are willing to pay for the printing of the checklists, it would be an excellent method of distribution into Piedmont homes.

Chairman Shaffer discussed the submission of the Committee’s annual report to the City Council with the Committee. He indicated that this year’s report would follow the same format as last year in describing the Committee’s work over the past year. The Committee requested that the report mention the large amount of work done to prepare the “Get Ready, Piedmont!” guide and checklist be specifically included in the report. By consensus, the Committee thanked Chairman Shaffer for preparing the report and approved of its submittal to the Council.

Chief McLaren indicated that following the Committee’s discussion at its last meeting, there would not be a Fire Department Open House. In its place, the Fire Department will host fire extinguisher training for residents on Saturday, May 14th. The training will be open to all residents and will involve using simulated fire extinguishers and training on the type and size of extinguishers that are appropriate for homes.

Committee Member Garrett Keating indicated that he had reached out to Alameda County Supervisor Keith Carson regarding the biannual earthquake fair that is held by the County. Unfortunately, he found out that the fair was not being held this year. The Committee indicated its interest in hosting the countywide fair in 2017 but needed more information on the scope and resource requirements .

The Committee discussed an event in the fall of 2016 to be held in October on a date close to the annual Great Shake Out. The Committee advocated starting small. It was suggested that it could be a way of bringing together the work that the Committee has been doing over the year. Outreach to organized neighborhoods, including suggesting that they conduct their annual drill on the same date of the event, will be discussed at a future meeting.

The Fire Department will work to have information and vendors available to residents at the event. The Committee stressed its desire to have the event be a one stop event where residents could learn about disaster preparedness as well as purchase supplies to prepare themselves.

Chairman Shaffer adjourned the meeting at 6:49 p.m.

 

May 22 2016

The Budget Advisory & Financial Planning Committee will meet on Wednesday, May 25, 2016 at 6:30 p.m. in the EOC Room – Police Department, 403 Highland Ave, Piedmont.  

The City Council met on May 21, 2016 in a Budget Workshop to consider department needs and projected revenue. The Committee responsible for advising the Council on the Budget will meet on May 25 to consider and make recommendations in a report to the Council.

Agenda –

Consideration of the Committee’s Report to the Council Regarding the Financial Projections Contained in the Proposed FY 16-17 Budget

The meeting, open to the public, will not be broadcast or recorded.  Minutes of prior meetings are not available. 

For further information contact Paul Benoit, City Administrator.

May 22 2016

OPEN MEETING

The Piedmont City Council will meet in the City Hall Conference Room to consider an item impacting all Piedmonters – garbage, recycling, electronic waste, and pick up services.

The meeting will not be broadcast or recorded, however the meeting is open to the public and anyone interested in the issue is welcome to attend and participate.

Special City Council Work Session on Agreement with Republic Services disposal services

Monday, May 23, 2016 at 6:30 p.m.

City Hall Conference Room, 120 Vista Avenue

Work Session with Consultant Regarding Possible Extension of the City’s Franchise and Collection Services Agreement with Republic Services, Inc.
0490-0700, 0700-0370

Materials related to an item on this agenda submitted to the City Council after distribution of the agenda packet are available for public inspection in the City Clerk’s office during normal business hours. Such documents are also available on the City of Piedmont web site subject to staff’s ability to post the documents before the meeting.

In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, if you need special assistance to participate in this meeting, please contact the City Clerk at (510) 420-3040. Notification at least two business days preceding the meeting will enable the City to make reasonable arrangements to ensure accessibility to this meeting. [28 CFR 35.102-35.104 ADA Title II]

In accordance with G.C. Sec. 54954.2(a) this notice and agenda were posted on the City Hall bulletin board and also in the Piedmont Police Department on May 18, 2016.