FEBRUARY 06, 2007

MEETING MINUTES

CLOSED SESSION/REGULAR MEETING

LIVINGSTON CITY COUNCIL

FEBRUARY 6, 2007

A Closed Session/Regular Meeting of the Livingston City Council was held in the City Council Chambers on February 6, 2007, with Mayor Samra presiding.

CLOSED SESSION

CALL TO ORDER  

Mayor Samra called the meeting to order at 5:30 p.m.

ROLL CALL

    Mayor Gurpal Samra

    Mayor Pro-Tem William Ingram

    Council Member Frank Vierra

    Council Member Rodrigo Espinoza

    Council Member Roy Soria

The Council went into Closed Session at 5:31 p.m. to discuss the following matters:

1.      Conference with Legal Counsel: Existing Litigation—Government Code Section 54956.9(a).

Foster Poultry Farms, Inc. v. City of Livingston, Merced County Superior Case No. 149443.    

      2.   Conference with Legal Counsel: Existing Litigation—Government Code Section 54956.9(a).

City of Livingston v. Foster Poultry Farms, Inc., Merced County Superior Court Case No. 149647.

3.      Conference with Legal Counsel: Existing Litigation—Government Code Section 54956.9(a).

Foster Poultry Farms, Inc. v. Richard Warne & Paul Creighton, United States District Court,

Eastern District Court of California: 1:06-CV-00931-OWW-DLB..

      4.   Conference with Legal Counsel—Anticipated Litigation.  Significant Exposure to Litigation.      Government Code 54956.9(b).  3 Cases. 

      5. Conference with Real Property Negotiator—Government Code Section 54956.8.

Property:  Parcel 047-310-023 and 047-310-024.

Agency Negotiator:  City Manager Richard N. Warne and City Attorney Tom Hallinan.

      6.   Conference with Real Property Negotiator—Government Code Section 54956.8.

            Property:  Parcel  047-310-021 and 047-310-022.

            Agency Negotiator:  City Manager Richard N. Warne and City Attorney Tom Hallinan.

7.      Conference with Real Property Negotiator—Government Code Section 54956.8.

Property:  Parcel 024-114-03.

Agency Negotiator:  City Manager Richard N. Warne and City Attorney Tom Hallinan.

The Closed Session ended at 7:14 p.m. 

OPEN SESSION  

The Council came out of Closed Session and into Open Session at 7:15 p.m. 

REGULAR MEETING

CALL TO ORDER 

Mayor Samra called the meeting to order at 7:17 p.m. 

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE 

The pledge of allegiance to the flag was recited.

ROLL CALL  

    Mayor Gurpal Samra

    Mayor Pro-Tem William Ingram

    Council Member Frank Vierra

    Council Member Rodrigo Espinoza

    Council Member Roy Soria

CLOSED SESSION ANNOUNCEMENTS 

There was no reportable action; the Council gave direction to staff. 

CHANGES TO THE AGENDA  

Warrant No. 61749 payable to Direct Towing was pulled from the Warrant Register and agendized as Item No. 13.  

Item No. 4 pertaining to the acceptance of improvements for Strawberry Fields Subdivision was

Tabled to the Regular Meeting of February 20, 2007. 

Item No. 10 relative to a consultant agreement with Cruz Bustamante was postponed to a future meeting.

AWARDS, PRESENTATIONS, APPOINTMENTS AND PROCLAMATIONS

1.      Appointment of Planning Commissioner.

Council Member Vierra asked that the names of the individuals that applied be announced.

City Manager Warne named the following applicants:  Martin Silva, Kaye Greeley, Jonathan Rodacy, Manoj Bains, David Talbott and Frank Correia.           

Mayor Samra thanked all applicants and called for nominations for appointment to the Planning Commission.

Council Member Espinoza nominated Martin Silva.

Council Member Vierra nominated Manoj Bains.

Council Member Soria nominated Jonathan Rodacy.

Mayor Samra asked for a second on the nominations.

There was no second to the nomination of Manoj Bains.

Mayor Pro-Tem Ingram seconded the nomination of Martin Silva.  The nomination carried 3-2-0 with Council Members Soria and Vierra voting no.

There was no second to the nomination of Jonathan Rodacy.

      2.   Presentation and Approval of City Audit and Local Transportation Development Act Compliance Audit for the Fiscal Year Ending June 30, 2006.          

Ryan Jolly of Firebaugh, who provided audit services for the City, gave a detailed report on the City Audit for the Fiscal Year ending June 30, 2006.  Lengthy discussion followed.

Mayor Samra thanked Finance Director Lewis for her efforts.  Director Lewis said she could not take all the credit and gave kudos to the staff that assisted her with this project.

City Manager Warned commented that Ms. Lewis was too modest; she indeed was very much a part of this audit.

Mayor Samra commented the City was in very good standing financially and he suggested staff inform the residents of the City’s finances via City utility bills.

Council Member Espinoza pointed out that water and sanitation fees need to be reviewed in the near future.  Council Member Vierra concurred.

Mayor Pro-Tem Ingram commended City Manager Warne and Finance Director Lewis for their efforts and dedication on the audit.

Motion:  M/S Ingram/Soria to approve  the City Audit and Local Transportation Development Act Compliance Audit for the Fiscal Year ending June 30, 2006.  The motion carried 5-0.

ANNOUNCEMENTS AND REPORTS

      Supervisor John Pedrozo Announcements and Reports.

·         Congratulated Martin Silva for his appointment to the Planning Commission.

·         Thanked Livingston for a successful City-County dinner.

·         Announced a Town Hall meeting will be held at the Livingston Community Center on February 15th ; thanked City staff for including the meeting announcement in City utility bills..

·         Reported on previous and future Town Hall meetings and emphasized that he will have representatives from all County departments available to answer questions.

·         Items coming up, Northern part of the SJRR will be forming a committee.

·         He will be attending a NACO Conference on March 2nd and will not be present at the March 6th Council meeting as he will be in Sacramento, but his representative will be in attendance..

·         Addressed mental health issues in the County and stated that all employees that were laid off will stay on with the County.

Councilmember Ingram asked Pedrozo about Mental Health in Livingston closing down.  He added that the City is in dire need of these services and he asked that bus passes be provided to people who need to go to Merced.

City Council Members’ Announcements and Reports:

Council Member Soria

·         Asked if Council could give staff direction about obtaining an appraisal of property by the Domestic Waste Water Treatment Plant.

Mayor Samra asked City Manager Warne to place this matter on the next agenda.

            Council Member Espinoza

·         Asked if staff could put up a large sign at “B” and Winton Parkway advertising  all downtown businesses. .  .

Mayor Samra asked City Manager Warne  to place this item on the March 6th Council agenda and direct staff to send a letter to downtown merchants to get their input.. 

Council Member Vierra

·         Asked that the deadline for applications for the Citizens’ Advisory Committee be extended to February 14th.

Mayor’s Announcements and Reports.

Mayor Samra

·         Nothing to report except that he has a few meetings scheduled and will be busy.

CITIZEN COMMENTS

Nellie McGarry, representing the office of Senator Jeff Denham, thanked Vickie Lewis for allowing her to have office space at City Hall.  She commented she will be attending a City Council meeting at least once a month.  Ms. McGarry added that Senator Denham is working on a Senate Bill regarding health insurance.. 

Mike Torres, 1616 Eighth Street, stated he was concerned that the RV Ordinance is not being revised.  He added that people like Martin Silva are just starting out and those that were in office before are gone so there is no history of what transpired in the last year.

Staff provided Mr. Torres with a copy of a memo regarding RV parking.

Mayor Pro-Tem Ingram agreed with Mr. Torres.  He noted there was to be a follow-up workshop on this issue that never took place and he would like this matter to be placed on the agenda for action.

Martin Silva commented that his neighbors on E Street had raised a concern that their area was rezoned without their knowledge and his neighbor wants to rebuild, but can’t because of the non-conforming use ordinance. 

Lengthy discussion followed.

Another issue raised by Mr. Silva was that the football field at the high school is locked.

Mayor Samra commented that he and City Manager Warne met with Dr. Robert Fore, Superintendent of the Merced Union High School District, and this was one issue that was discussed.  He added that staff had talked to Nancy Edmiston, LHS Principal, who relayed that the field was locked due to problems with vandalism.

Mike Torres asked about the legal issues involved if someone got hurt while using the high school track.

Juan Garza commented that traffic on B Street is becoming very congested especially when kids are dropped off by the district office.

Lengthy discussion followed.

The concern was directed to Wayne Koehn who in turn will bring up the issue with Henry Escobar, LUSD Superintendent.

Martin Silva commented that he also drops his kids off at this location and had a few suggestions on what can be done to alleviate the problem  including no left turn into the “B” Street horseshoe..

PUBLIC HEARINGS

      3.   Resolution to Amend the Community Development Fee Schedule by Adding Certain Deposits.

            The agenda item was presented by Community Development Director Kenney.

            Mayor Samra opened the Public Hearing at 8:29 p.m.

Juan Garza, 846 First Street, voiced concern that charging so many fees will scare away developers.  He understands that developers make lots of money, but commercial projects should not be charged so much.

Lengthy discussion followed on the issue of fees.  

Mike Torres said he had not seen the fee scale.  Mayor Samra gave him a copy to review.

Mr. Torres asked for clarification on commercial versus residential fees.

Mayor Samra closed the Public Hearing at 8:43 p.m., there being no further comments from the public.

Council Member Espinoza did not agree that the fees were too high.

Council Members Soria and Vierra agreed with the amount of deposits.

Mayor Pro-Tem Ingram commented that the only foreseeable problem is if a developer backs out, whoever takes over the project will have to complete the project.  He gave an example of a project on Peach Avenue and stated that if the project had been bonded the City would not have lost any money.

            Espinoza asked if there was a way to have developers provide a bond..

            Lengthy discussion followed.            

Mayor Pro-Tem Ingram commented that he agreed with Mr. Garza that Livingston is known to be the most pricy fee charging city in the area.

Mike Torres asked about the project next to the Valero Gas Station on Walnut Avenue.  He asked if the City had collected all fees for that project.

Director Kenney replied that she didn’t know as this was prior to her employment with the City.

Motion:  M/S Vierra/Soria to adopt Resolution No. 2007-07, amending the Community Development fee schedule by adding certain deposits.  The motion carried 5-0 by the following vote:

AYES:                        Council Members:       Espinoza, Ingram, Samra, Soria, Vierra

NOES:                        Council Members:       None

ABSENT:       Council Members:       None

CONSENT CALENDAR

            The following consent agenda items were presented for the Council’s consideration:         

5.      Approval of Minutes of City Council Meeting Held on January 12, 2007.

      6.   Approval of Minutes of City Council Meeting Held on January 16, 2007.

7.   Approval of Minutes of City Council Meeting Held on January 18, 2007.

8.      Approval of Warrant Register Dated January 29, 2007.

Motion:  M/S Ingram/Espinoza to approve the consent calendar items as presented.  The motion carried 5-0.

DISCUSSION AND POTENTIAL ACTION ITEMS    

      9.   Staff Request for Council Direction Regarding Appointments to the Livingston Recreation Commission.

Staff informed Council that the terms of members of the Livingston Recreation Commission had expired and asked for direction on how to proceed with the appointment process.

Council Member Espinoza, Commission liaison, commented there have been few meetings held due to lack of a quorum. 

Lengthy discussion followed regarding extending the date for anyone who wanted to apply..

Motion:  Ingram/Espinoza to combine the Recreation Commission and the Citizens’ Advisory Committee into one group because of a lack of a quorum at most Recreation Commission meetings and to enable the City to move forward with improvements to the sports complex.  The motion carried 4-1-0 with Council Member Vierra voting no.    

      11. Discussion of Park Facility Rental Fees.

            The Council continued this item to the February 20, 2007 regular meeting.        

Mayor Pro-Tem Ingram requested that further discussion pertaining to land on the west side of the railroad tracks between Dwight and Sultana be placed on a future agenda.

12. City Manager Announcements and Reports.

            No reports.

13.  Approval of Warrant No. 61749 to Direct Towing.

Motion:  M/S Ingram/Soria to approve Warrant No. 61749 to Direct Towing.  The motion carried 4-0-1 with Council Member Espinoza abstaining.

ADJOURNMENT

The Council by consensus adjourned the meeting at 9:19 p.m.

                                                                                                                                                                ______________________________           

City Clerk of the City of Livingston

  

APPROVED:  February 20, 2007

________________________

 Mayor or Mayor ProTempore

 

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