Nov 13 2018

Call for more community input – 

     Superintendent Randy Booker will present the idea of a School Resource Officer to the School Board at their meeting this Wednesday, November 14, 2018, 7:00 p.m., City Hall.  I would like to hear more community engagement on this topic. I think it would be good to make sure that the members of our community are aware of the various security measures being proposed — including perimeter fencing around the middle school and high school, and new surveillance cameras around town.
    The current focus on security measures is troubling to me, reminding me of a culture of fear that has developed at a national level. I sent this letter to the School Board prior to their last meeting. Please feel free to reprint.
    Thank you,
     Elizabeth Shook
~~~~~~~~~
To Superintendent Randy Booker and the PUSD School Board: 
     My husband and I are strongly against perimeter fencing and a school safety officer at Piedmont Middle School or Piedmont High School.
     With the recent threat incident at PMS, we understand that emotions are running high. However, perimeter fencing and a school safety officer would have made NO DIFFERENCE in this recent threat.
     We agree that the safety of our students is our primary concern. We believe this is a mental health issue, not a criminal issue.
     Adding a school safety officer at either PMS or PHS is a major over-reaction. The presence of police on campus has not been shown to limit or protect from past school shootings. At our secondary schools, we already have the Piedmont police department located within two blocks. Our school is located in a quiet, safe suburban neighborhood. An officer on campus would actually heighten student anxiety and tension.
     If we have the budget, we should spend the funds on additional counseling staff who can work with students with unfortunate family, social, or mental health situations. This will do more to deter future tragedy than a school safety officer.
     We call on the Superintendent and the School Board to let emotions settle, and then survey the community on this issue. Where could the money be better spent? What do the students want? What about teachers?
     We believe that our families need: 1) Clear and transparent communication from the administration about school threats – and school policies. 2) Students and families need to be taught the best response to dangerous scenarios. 3) Zero tolerance for students who make threats or bring weapons to school.
      Here are some articles about School Safety Officers that make good points:
      Putting more cops in schools won’t make schools safer, and it will …
       New York Set to Revise Role of School Safety Agents
      I am also against perimeter fencing. I feel it can actually trap students in a dangerous situation and impede evacuations.  In reality, fencing will not deter actual bad guys.
        PHS Students considered the fencing when it was first proposed in this 2016 editorial:
“Fencing the campus entirely would cost an estimated $300,000 — far more than any college education — even before implementing monitoring systems that could actually keep dangerous individuals off the property.
       “Frankly, a fence alone will not be effective in deterring an active shooter, the fear of which has been a key motivation behind the push for revamping the district’s safety measures. In the wake of tragedies like Sandy Hook, this desire to proactively increase safety is understandable, but the decision to build a fence would be reactive and incomplete. Instead of actually improving our safety, we would be cultivating the mere illusion of security, a incremental measure not worth the significant cost.”
      Thank you for your consideration.
       Regards,
       Elizabeth Shook and Denis Fung, Piedmont Residents and Piedmont School District Parents
Nov 12 2018

Potential agreement between the City Council and the School Board –

An introductory discussion of adding a police resource officer into the Piedmont Unified School District will be considered on Wednesday, November 14, 2018 during the 7:oo p.m. Board of Education meeting held in City Hall.  The meeting will be broadcast live on Cable Channel 27 and via the City website.

To view the report go to item VII and click on the Superintendent’s report > https://agendaonline.net/public/Meeting.aspx?AgencyID=1241&MeetingID=67947&AgencyTypeID=1&IsArchived=False

Nov 12 2018

2017-18 City Revenue exceeded annual budget by $3.5 million.

The Piedmont Budget Advisory and Financial Planning Committee met on November 7, 2018 to consider Piedmont financial matters and consider recommendations to the City Council.

Handouts were provided to the Committee at their meeting.

The following is an abbreviated Power Point Presentation prepared by the Director of Finance and provided on November 7, 2018, to the Budget Advisory and Financial Planning Committee.  The presentation is printed below for readers interested in Piedmont’s financial condition in a limited form allowed on the PCA website.  Charts are excluded.  To view the original document inquire with the Piedmont City Clerk at 510/420-3040.

2017-18 Fiscal Year Report Actual vs. Budget

FY 2017-18 Highlights

•Revenue exceeded annual budget by $3.5 million

Major variances include:

• Transfer tax exceeded annual budget by $1.0 million.

  • Home sales up 4% over last year (132 vs 127)
  • Average Sales Price increased 7% to $2.3 million

• Property taxes exceeded annual budget by $0.8 million:

  • Secured property tax +$484 K
  • Supplemental property tax +$294 K

• Mutual Aid \ Strike Team revenue was $0.5 million as we participated in battling seasons severe wildfires.

• Recreation revenue up $0.2 million due to increased contract program offerings

Transfer Tax – Recent History

Property Tax – History / FY 18-19 Budget

Note: In the Ten Year Plan, we use the 10 year average growth rate of 4.4%

FY 2017-18 Highlights

Major variances include (continued):

• The following categories also contributed to the revenue gain:

  • Business Licenses + $138 K
  • Building Permits + $132 K
  • Motor Vehicle License Fee + $129 K
  • Interest
  • Ambulance Fees
  • Utility Users Tax
  • Community and Veterans

Hall Rental + $ 50 K

+ $ 90 K + $ 71 K + $ 61 K

•Overall, expenditures were under budget by ~$16,000

• All operating departments were under budget with the exception of Fire.

The drivers of the overage in fire were:

• Higher overtime costs, offset by lower regular salaries and retirement costs, which resulted in a budget overage of $235 K.

• This overage is more than offset by the $480 K received for our assistance in battling state’s wildfire’s.

• Premiums for workers compensation and liability insurance were $152 higher than budget.

•In summary, General Fund operating net revenue (revenue less expenses) exceeded budget by $3.5 million.

Update on CalPERS Pension

Components of our pension cost

• Our pension costs consist of the following:

• Normal cost = the present value of the future benefits to be received that is “earned” in the current year of service.

• Actuary’s calculate this based on a series of assumptions, including:

• Demographic: Years of service, salary at time of retirement, retirement ag age of death

• Financial: CalPERS portfolio earnings (discount rate)
• Expressed as a % of payroll and paid in monthly installments.

• Unfunded Actuarial Liability (UAL) = Excess of actuarial accrued liability over value of the pension fund assets.

• Caused by lower than expected investment returns, changes in demogra other assumption changes (lowering assumed discount rate).

  • Amortized over 20-30 years.
  • Expressed as a $ amount and paid annually.

Employees eligible for retirement:
Safety Tier 1 – 11 eligible, 2 retiring in 2018-19 Misc Tier 1 – 7 eligible, 2 retiring in 2018-19

Payoff of Unfunded Liability is included in our long range plan.

City of Piedmont Pension Tiers – Statistics

Funded CalPERS

City of Piedmont UAL Layers – Safety Tier

• Purpose of the slide is to show what comprises the UAL (Unfunded Accrued Liability), and what affects each year.

• Note – The payoff of the UAL is included in our long term plan.

What is Happening at CalPERS?

• CalPERS’ Portfolio – Annual Earnings is Forecast for next 20 yrs = of 6.6%

• Anticipating Negative Cash Flow for another 9-10 years (due to increasing number of retiree’s).

• Began cutting discount rate. First year affected is 2018-19.

• Policy regarding Amortization on Unfunded Liability to change in 2021.

CalPERS – Recent Changes Change in discount rate from 7.50%:

Rate • 6/30/16 valuation
• 6/30/17 valuation
• 6/30/18 valuation

Initial Full 7.375% 18/19 7.25% 19/20 22/23 23/24 24/25 7.00% 20/21

Risk Mitigation Strategy
• Move to more conservative investments over time • Lower discount rate in concert
• Likely get to 6.0% over 20+ years per Bartel.

Amortization Changes

• Beginning with UAL layers established on or after June 30, 2019 (which affects payments beginning in FY 2021-22) the following changes will be made:

• Amortization of Investment Gain\Loss and Demographic changes will b shortened from 30 to 20 years.

• Eliminate all “Ramp Up and Ramp Down” except for the ramp up on Investment Gain\Loss. This will reduce the amount of “negative amort which will lower interest paid.

• Good news is total interest paid will decrease, but payments wi————-

How will these changes affect the City ?

• Last year, engaged Bartel and Associates to estimate these future co

• Projections assumed discount rate will decline from 7.375% in 2018-19 to 7. 2020-21 per CalPERS policy. And a further decrease to 6.0% over the next 20

• Will need to refresh Bartel’s assumptions to include recent amortization changes.

• ROI for FY ending 6/30/17 was 11.2 %

• However our Unfunded liability increased slightly due primarily to the chang discount rate.

• FY ending 6/30/18 ROI was 8.4 %

• Both our Normal cost and our UAL payments will increase significant steadily over the next 15 years

Effect on General Fund

• The City began addressing the issue earlier this year:

• In May we opened a Section 115 Irrevocable Trust account with the Public Agency Retirement Services (PARS) with a contribution of $2.0 million.

• Projections indicate total expenditures (which includes planned capital transfer exceed revenues in 2023 through 2030. In these years the City may draw from PARS account to ensure a balanced budget.

• In order to not allow the General Fund reserve to drop below 18% of expenditures will need an additional $0.75 million contribution this year, as noted at our previous meeting.

Review of Proposed 2017-18 Year End General Fund Transfers

Year End General Fund Transfers • Recap of variance to budget (000’s):

Year End General Fund Transfers

• We recommend allocation as follows:

• $2.5 million to the Facilities Maintenance Fund.
• $0.75 million to the Pension Rate stabilization fund (PARS)

Equipment Replacement Fund

• At June 30, 2018, the Equipment Replacement fund balance was —- million.

• Based on a review of estimated equipment needs for the next 1 years, and planned annual transfers into the fund, no additional funding is currently needed.

Status of Trust Funds – OPEB and Legacy Police & Fire Pension Fund

• Police & Fire Fund
• Twelve remaining beneficiaries (5 primary, 7 survivor). • Annual benefit payments currently ~$225,000.
As of 6/30/18, the plan is OVER funded by ~10.5 million

• OPEB Fund

• Currently OPEB is UNDER funded by ~$13.7 million…however,

• Retiree benefits has been reduced to the PEMCHA minimum for all hirees May 1, 2018.

• Will realize a significant cash savings when these employees retire. Cur the average annual cost for a retiree is ~$10,000 compared to ~$1,600 the PEMCHA minimum.

Status of Trust Funds – OPEB and Legacy Police & Fire Pension Fund

• Due to the small number of retiree’s remaining in the Police and fund, coupled with the changes made to the OPEB fund:

• We are projecting the overage in the Police & Fire fund will grow and o the under funded OPEB trust in approximately 12 years. Around 2030.

Increased funding of OPEB is not recommended at this time. Employee contribute an estimated $100,000 to the fund through payroll deduction FY 2018-19.

Facilities Maintenance Fund

• The maintenance and improvement of city facilities has necessarily been a high priority for the City Council

• Staff completed a review of all City facilities in March of this year report detailed the following through FY 2021-22:

• Annual Operations: Annual recurring expenses required to maintain City facilities, including regular such as janitorial, alarm, pest control, heating systems, fire safety, and annual inspections.

• Annual Maintenance & Repairs: Cost of maintaining, repairing, or replacing various miscellaneous it of the City’s facilities that are malfunctioning, broken, or otherwise have reached their serviceable life.

• Consultant Services: Professional consulting services involving investigation, analysis, and recommendation which form the basis of the project’s next steps. Also included in this category are expenses related t project management services on an as-needed basis since the breath of the projects exceeds Staff capabilities.

• Deferred Maintenance Projects: Planned and prioritized major construction projects of a specific na undertaken to replace, achieve compliance, and/or modernize existing facilities that have been prev deferred.

(a) Assumes the $800,000 bequest from the estate of Anne Kroeger received in FY 2015-16 will be used for Recreation Center upgrades.

Assume 3% annual growth after FY 22-23

Cash Flow Forecast and Investment Results

Cash Flow Forecast

• Prepared a four year cash flow forecast to determine if we invest idle cash.

• Cash flow is very choppy.

• Heavily dependent on property tax receipts

• Flow will allow us to invest approximately $6 – $7 million longer term (up to three years) fixed income securities

Multi-Bank Securities

•Opened account with Multi-Bank Securities •Specializes in fixed income securities •Dedicated account representative
•Easy to use investment platform

• Platform has the ability to assure CD’s purchased do not exceed the maximum insurable by the FDIC ($250,000 pe institution)

Investment Strategy

• In the past, the City invested all Idle cash in LAIF (Local Agency Investment Fund).

• Began investing idle cash with MBS Securities in April.

• In process of building three year CD ladder

• CD’s are currently the best yielding fixed income security allowable under our investment policy, and its fully insured.

Investment Strategy
• Portfolio @ 10/31/18 (000’s):

• Current LAIF Yield is 2.16%. • Was 1.35% back in January

• CD ladder will increase interest earned (as compared to LAIF) in FY 2018-19 by approximately $35,000

Transfer Tax Update Year to Date – October 31

Transfer Tax Update

YTD receipts fairly consistent with past 4 years

  • Average seasonality indicates annual transfer tax to be in the $3.0 – $3.2 million range

Transfer Tax Update

• Receipt pattern tends to be choppy the first six months, but fairly consistent the remainder of the year

• Average seasonality indicates annual transfer tax to be in the $3.0 – $3.2 million range

Questions ? Contact City Clerk at 510/420-3040. 

Handout_GF_Pension_LTP

 

Nov 5 2018

Funding in the amount of $548,333 is coming from the State of California in a program termed “Citizens’ Option” to Piedmont’s Police Department.

There have been no noticed meetings regarding a “Citizens’ Option” public hearing to learn from Piedmonters how they want the $548,333 to be used. It was on the November 5th City Council agenda.

The staff report states in part:

In FY 2018/19, the Piedmont Police Department expects to receive $140,000 from the COPS grant into the SLESA. In addition, funds in the amount of $408,333 are being carried forward from prior years resulting in total funds available of $548,333. Such funds will need to be spent or encumbered by June 20, 2019. 

FISCAL IMPACT:  The funds must be spent or encumbered by June 30, 2019. There are no matching requirements for this grant, and no direct impact on City resources for the fiscal years associated with the action in this staff report. This plan may be adjusted in the future and by no means represents Council approval for non-routine, large-scale procurements such as the license plate readers. Future purchases will be made in accordance with the City’s adopted procurement policies and, prior to any such purchase, staff will provide Council with a full report and detailed request of any proposed procurements that exist within the spending plan.

City Administrator Benoit’s Recommendation at the November 5 Council meeting:

Adopt a resolution accepting the 2018/19 California Citizens Option for Public Safety (COPS) grant in the amount of $140,000 as allocated in the Supplemental Law Enforcement Services Account (SLESA) for the Piedmont Police Department and approve the spending plan to purchase items supporting frontline law enforcement services. 

Read the full staff report including the spending plan by clicking below.

http://www.ci.piedmont.ca.us/html/govern/staffreports/2018-11-05/FY18-19COPS.pdf

For more information on COPS grants go to > https://www.sco.ca.gov/ard_payrments_cops.html

Nov 5 2018

Budget Advisory & Financial Planning Committee Wednesday, November 7, 2018

6:00 p.m.

Emergency Operations Center, 403 Highland Avenue Piedmont, CA

This meeting will not be broadcast or recorded. The public is welcome to attend this public meeting.

There will be an opportunity for members of the audience to speak on an item not on the agenda. The 10 minute period will be divided evenly between those wishing to address the Committee.

  1. Review of FY 2017-18 General Fund Revenue and Expenditures: Actual vs Budget
  2. Update on CalPERS Pension Liability
  3. Review of Long Term Pension and General Fund Projections
  4. Review of Proposed FY 2017-18 Year End General Fund Transfers and Consideration of a Recommendation to the City Council
  5. Review of Cash Flow Forecast and Investment Results (Non-Trust Funds)

Announcements, old business and consideration of future agenda items

Adjourn –

“The materials for the meeting will be provided to the members of the committee and the public at the meeting.” City of Piedmont

NOTICE: Materials used for the meeting: Actual vs. Budget, CalPERS pension liability, Cash Flow, Investments, etc. will not be distributed to the Committee members until they are present at the meeting.  Meeting attendees can receive the information at the meeting. No distribution of agenda materials will be made until the time of the meeting. 

Materials related to an item on this agenda submitted to the Budget Advisory and Financial Planning Committee are available for public inspection in the Finance Department during normal business hours.

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]

Note: Members of the Budget Advisory and Financial Planning Committee are not required per City Council policy to file Conflicts of Interests Statements.

Nov 4 2018

The following Letter to the Editor of The Piedmont Post was sent to the Post, but was not published in the Post.  It is published here for PCA readers.

VOTE NO on CC – Unacceptable City Charter changes.

CC  – the “hire, but can’t fire” proposal –  would unacceptably change Piedmont’s successful government by prohibiting the City Council from acting to retain or terminate their chosen Department Heads – Fire Chief, Police Chief, Finance Director, Recreation Director, etc. 

Piedmonters should not enact this law. It promises problems found in other cities where councils have lost their authority and ability to act.  A new government layer will separate Piedmonters from Council authority. 

Only one person, the unelected City Administrator, would be allowed by Charter to evaluate, direct, retain and terminate Council-hired  key employees -Police, Fire, Finance, Recreation, etc.  

Piedmont’s current Charter works and is coveted by others. 

With 22 years in elected office – Mayor, Council Member, Planning Commissioner, AC Transit President and Director, I have reviewed the Charter proposals and found proposals not in the best interest of keeping Piedmont a great place to live. 

The Charter merits updating, but NOT as proposed by Measure CC.  

Keep Piedmont’s Council strong. Await appropriate Charter change proposals.

VOTE NO on CC at the end of your ballot. 

Alice Creason,

Former: Piedmont Mayor, Council Member, Planning Commissioner, AC Transit President, Director, Piedmont Beautification Foundation Trustee

Nov 2 2018

City of Piedmont
Joint Park Commission and
Recreation Commission 

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

7:00 p.m.

City Council Chambers, 120 Vista Avenue, Piedmont, CA

 Receipt of a Report on the Revised Conceptual Plan for the Linda Beach Master Plan and
Consideration of a Recommendation to the City Council on Next Steps

A summary of the distinguishing attributes of the revised plan are as follows:

  •  A California Playscape designed with landscape buffers near the Oakland Avenue Bridge and along Howard Avenue fills the now dormant south end of the park with natural adventure play for all ages
  •  Creation of a new enclosed tot lot (~4000 sq. ft.) for children age 3 and younger at the north end of the park within the existing tot lot footprint with a new restroom building to serve the tot lot, flex space and tennis courts
  •  A Sport Court Flex Space that can serve as multipurpose outdoor recreation program space for all ages (e.g. weekday adult/senior programs such as tai chi, outdoor fitness and painting; afterschool enrichment activities such as jump rope, martial arts, arts and crafts; outdoor and overflow space for Schoolmates)
  •  An artificial turf bocce ball court that makes efficient use of space required for ADA access grading
  •  Multiple picnic areas suitable for small family gatherings
  •  New modern restrooms and storage for community youth sports organizations at the south end
  •  Significant landscape buffers at the south end of the park
  •  Two ADA entrances from Linda Avenue and stair access from the north end of the pedestrian path near Beach School to the tot lot and stair access from the tennis courts to the sports field
  •  Retention of the notable trees on site including the Melaleucas along Linda Avenue and the mature redwoods below the play field
  •  Two tennis courts with north-south orientation and slightly larger offsets than existing courts
  •  The use of permeable surfaces for hardscape areas and paths to create options for green infrastructure allowing for appropriate storm water treatment options to be integrated into the landscape
  •  Phasing approach that allows for the long neglected south end of the park to be constructed first
  •  Allows for a third phase of the project which would add a multi-purpose recreation building to the northwest corner of the park expanding indoor recreation programming opportunities for Piedmonters of all ages (bridge, mahjong, book club, yoga, art, lego, knitting, carpentry, ballet etc.)
  •  Phase three building also creates an indoor/outdoor interface that will accommodate robust and complete full day summer camp offerings as well as after school enrichment activities and small evening and weekend gatherings
  •  Fencing plan allows for controlling park use after hours

READ the prior meeting draft minutes, full staff report, and schematic plan Joint Park and Recreation Commission Meeting 11.7.18 Packet

Oct 31 2018

We’ve all heard that old adage, “If it’s not broken, don’t fix it.” That’s what comes to mind with Measures BB and CC on the upcoming ballot.

The proponents of BB and CC claim they are merely updates to our “outdated” City Charter and will result in more openness and transparency. But when you look at what’s actually proposed, you’ll realize that BB and CC do more harm than good.

Measure BB proposes to change at least fourteen sections of the City Charter.

Although the proponents of Measure BB claim it merely updates the City Charter, it’s so much more than that. It impacts several key areas, among them being the elimination of competitive bidding. BB allows Council to raise and, in some cases, waive competitive bidding thresholds. So voting for this measure gives carte blanche for city contracts to bypass competitive bidding. As written, this aspect of Measure BB could have tremendous negative financial impacts on the city.

Measure BB would also impact the election and meeting requirements of the City Council by eliminating the need for twice-monthly meetings and changing the interval from the current four years to eight years (two terms) before a City Council member could run again. School Board members have this same four-year interval, and they are not seeking a change.

Measure CC abolishes Council authority to discipline city staff.

These proposed changes weaken the authority of the City Council and decrease the public’s opportunities to participate in city government and hold its council members accountable.

Piedmont’s department heads – Police, Fire, Recreation Director, Finance, etc. – are currently hired and fired by City Council, allowing the Council to be aware of the workings of various city departments and providing accountability to the public from their elected representatives. Measure CC weakens this authority by giving all responsibility to the unelected City Administrator to evaluate and terminate city employees. This proposed change creates obstacles that currently don’t exist, removes transparency, and is rife with unforeseen consequences, including potential decreases in morale, increases in employee turnover, and wrongful termination lawsuits.

The City Charter has been serving Piedmont well since its last revision forty years ago. It’s not broken. The ballot text for Measures BB and CC don’t tell the whole story. Visit http://www.ci.piedmont.ca.us/city-council-places-charter-measures-on-ballot/to see what these measures really do.

Please join me in voting NO on Measures BB and CC.

Melanie Robertson, Former Piedmont Planning Commissioner

Oct 26 2018
Who do Piedmonters want to control retention and dismissal of the Piedmont Police Chief, Fire Chief, Finance Director, Recreation Director – elected City Council or the appointed City Administrator?

The City Charter currently states the elected 5 member City Council has the hiring, retention, and dismissal control over the top employee positions – Fire Chief, Police Chief, Finance Director, Recreation Director, etc.

Measure CC  takes authority and control from the elected Council regarding Department Heads and gives authority and control to the unelected City Administrator.

Measure CC forbids the City Council by Charter from continuing to determine if their Fire Chief, Police Chief, Finance Director, Recreation Director, etc. should remain in their positions.  The City Administrator will be the only person in Piedmont able to retain or dismiss the key-employees the City Council recruited and hired.

MEASURE  CC asks, “Shall the measure amending the Charter of the City of Piedmont to clarify the duties and reporting structure for officers and employees of the City be adopted?”

Voters will decide whether to keep the City Charter as written or change it by voting Yes or No on Measure CC. The choice is as follows:

  • Keep the City Charter, as is, with City Council controlling  = Vote NO

  • Change the City Charter placing City Administrator in control = Vote YES

 

Oct 16 2018

The City Charter has not been revised in more than 30 years.  It is out of date and contains inconsistencies.  The City Council had several meetings over a two year period to consider changes to the Charter, and actively sought and considered citizen input.  For a detailed analysis of these measures, I recommend the Piedmont League of Voters website, at https://my.lwv.org/california/piedmont/lwvp-pros-cons-city-piedmont-measures-bb-and-cc.

I believe there are two “hot buttons” regarding Measure BB.  The first “hot button” concerns competitive bidding.  Measure BB would remove language that says Piedmont will follow state law on competitive bidding.  As a Charter City, Piedmont has the authority to set its own thresholds for competitive bidding.  By removing that language, Piedmont makes clear that it is exercising its Charter City authority.  It is my understanding that Piedmont does a full competitive bid for any projects exceeding $75,000, and has had trouble getting contractors to bid for low dollar projects.  In my opinion, a $75,000 threshold sufficiently balances the need to wisely spend public funds against the administrative burden on the City and bidders.  The second concerns how long a termed-out Council member would need to wait to run again for the Council.  Measure BB would change the four year waiting period, to an eight year waiting period.  While I don’t agree with this change, I still support Measure BB because this situation hardly ever arises, and I believe that the other changes in Measure BB are desirable and necessary.

Measure CC addresses personnel issues, and it clarifies ambiguous and outdated language in the City Charter.  If Measure CC passed, the City Council would be responsible for hiring all department heads and managing and firing the City Administrator and City Attorney.  The City Administrator would be responsible for managing and firing all City employees except the City Attorney. It is not unusual for a board of directors to hire a CEO of its organization, and to give the CEO the authority and responsibility for hiring, managing and firing all of the organization’s employees.  We cannot expect our City Council, a group of five volunteers, to manage the City’s department heads.  With these changes to the City Charter, we should expect that the City Administrator would confer with the Council in exercising his/her authority, and the Council holding the City Administrator responsible for how that authority was exercised.

Kathleen Quineville, Piedmont Resident