JUNE 19, 2012 Draft Minutes






JUNE 19, 2012

A Closed Session/Regular Meeting of the Livingston City Council was held on June, 19, 2012, in the City Council Chambers with Mayor Espinoza presiding.


The Closed Session was cancelled.




Mayor Espinoza called the meeting to order at 7:02 p.m.



The pledge of allegiance to the flag was recited.


Mayor Rodrigo Espinoza

Mayor Pro-Tem Margarita Aguilar (Excused Absence)

Council Member Frank Vierra (Excused Absence)

Council Member Theresa Land

Council Member Gurpal Samra



Mayor Espinoza pulled Item 7 from the consent agenda for discussion.




1. Introduction of Livingston High School Hispanic Youth Leadership Club Members, Rolando Chavez, Sandra Ayala, Gabriela Verduzco, Gerardo Aguilar, Evelin Amezcua, Rocio Amezcua, Laura Marroquin, Gabriela Mejia, Karen Pinales, Laura Ramirez and Advisor, Clara Patty Moran.

City Manager Ramirez commented that these are local leaders of this community who volunteer their time constantly especially with Mr. Hector Bravo and wherever they are needed. They are here this evening to formally introduce themselves to the Council. We have a number of different events that take place throughout the community and these young folks actually make themselves available to help us, whether it is volunteering their time or for instance, we have had some outside agencies come and provide local services. They actually participate in assisting those agencies to reach out to the community and we very much appreciate it.

Mayor Espinoza thanked the students on behalf of the City Council for all their hard work. He advised them to study hard and wished them luck in their future endeavors. He also thanked their advisor, Ms. Moran.

Mayor Espinoza (in Spanish) stated, “This is a youth group from Livingston High School that volunteers their time with various community events throughout the City. Their various hours of volunteer work count when applying for colleges. We thank you all for your hard work and dedication and we also thank their advisor Ms. Moran.”

2. Introduction of Patricia Vargas, new Reverend of Our Redeemer Lutheran Church.

City Manager Ramirez introduced Patricia Vargas, new Reverend of Our Redeemer Lutheran Church, who replaced former long-time Pastor Bill Ruth.

Reverend Vargas provided information on her background.

Mayor Espinoza welcomed Reverend Vargas to the community and thanked her for coming to the meeting.








Supervisor John Pedrozo Announcements and Reports.


City Staff Announcements and Reports.

Recreation Superintendent Benoit announced that the pool was now open and lap swimming was being offered as well. She gave a brief explanation on the operation of the pool. She shared that she will be on vacation next week, therefore, there will be no Parks and Recreation Commission meeting.

Mayor Espinoza asked why was it that parents had to pay to come into the pool area.

Superintendent Benoit explained that many times a parent may intend to watch their children at the pool, but then end up getting in the water with them.

Superintendent Benoit and Julio Valadez presented award certificates to those that participated in the kite festival.

Council Member Land asked Superintendent Benoit to explain the breakfast and lunch program at Campus Park School.

Superintendent Benoit gave an explanation on how the program works.

City Manager Announcements and Reports

City Manager Ramirez announced that work continues on the vehicle abatement program and those with questions should contact the Police Department or City Hall. He noted that if you have a pool and are not maintaining it, it could lead to a mosquito problem. Also, carnival tickets are being sold at City Hall and should be purchased early because they are half off the regular price. He gave a reminder that the Stakeholders Committee meeting is Thursday, June 21st .

Mayor Espinoza asked about the drain on Second and C Street that has standing water and maybe not working right.

City Engineer Gottiparthy gave an update on Wells 16 and 8; they are currently working with the consultants. They are waiting on the final proposals and they have asked for a little more detail. On Well 16 they have prepared the bids and they have gone out to two media companies. One proposal came in yesterday and another one is to be submitted by this Friday. Then they will compile media projections and present them to the Stakeholders Committee.

Council Member Samra asked if the City Engineer could give an update on the pipeline replacement.

City Engineer Gottiparthy explained that the contractor has submitted the paperwork. He has placed the order for the pipes and is waiting for more shipments to arrive. He has completed some of the underground evaluations and is working on locating his stationary part of the project..

City Council Members’ Announcements and Reports.

Council Member Land announced that American Softball Association (ASA) was putting on a co-ed softball tournament on June 23 at the Livingston High School (LHS) softball area.

Mayor’s Announcements and Reports.

Mayor Espinoza noted that fuel costs have gone up $2,000 from last month and he wondered why.



3. Introduce and Waive the First Reading of Ordinance No.___ of the City Council of the City of Livingston Adopting the Regional Transportation Impact Fee (RTIF).


Mayor Espinoza asked that this item be continued.

Mayor Espinoza opened the hearing to the public at 7:21 p.m.

Colette Alvernaz, P.O. Box 255 had some questions after looking at the document. She didn’t understand some of the things that were in the document. She found a deficiency that there is no funding for the bridge that the City of Livingston has in the circulation master plan that was cited in the 2025 General Plan. If there is, and for the circulation plan to work, it needed to have a bridge over the Merced River otherwise the traffic would not flow at all.

Most especially since the time E&J Gallo expanded its plant and the traffic congestion on Vinewood and B Street;the Winton Parkway exit is very busy and congested at 8:00 a.m. when people are coming and going. There were funds needed by the year 2030, and there is no mention of the funds needed for the bridge and that is a huge deficit. When she goes to the very end of the document it states that only 17% of the project cited will be funded. Her question is where is the other 83% of the funding going? She also stated that the population in the document projected for 2030 is high and she also felt the unemployment rate was too high.

Mayor Espinoza stated that the Gallo expansion is in the County and they did pass this fee, every city in the County has passed the impact fee except Livingston. So they are charging businesses being built or any expansions and they are paying their part of the traffic impact fee.

The public comment period was closed by Mayor Espinoza at 7:27 p.m.

Motion: M/S Espinoza/Samra to continue the item. The motion carried 3-0 by the following roll call vote:

AYES: Council Members: Espinoza, Land, and Samra

NOES: Council Members: None

ABSENT: Council Members: Aguilar, Vierra




Katherine Schell Rodriquez, P.O. Box 163 asked if staff had been asked to correct meeting minutes. She also asked that they quit calling the Utility Rates Stakeholders Committee by its full name as what was established by resolution.  She asked to be reminded of when the resolution was passed to change the name from Utility Rates Stakeholders Committee to just Stakeholders Committee.

{Note from TheGardeningSnail..this is not quite right…I was pointing out that a COUNCIL MEMBER had erroneously stated at a previous meeting that the name of the committee was only “Stakeholders committee”…}

On February 15, 2011, the Council directed staff to advertise for volunteers for a Utility Rates Stakeholders Committee and on April 5, 2011, this Council passed Resolution 2011-25 appointing members to a Utility Rates Stakeholders Committee. On May 3, 2011, this Council appointed another member to the Utility Rates Stakeholders Committee.

She has yet to find a resolution passed by this Council which changes the name of this Committee to just Stakeholders Committee. A Stakeholders Committee can mean many different things to many different people and if you really want to change the name of this Committee call it the Water, Sewer and Garbage Oversight Committee. Describe its duties, its form and functions and do so by resolution passed by this Council.

If you want to expand the scope of what the Committee does that is okay too, just do it by resolution voted on by all of you.

Colette Alvernaz, P.O. Box 255 stated that something happened after she paid her taxes and she hoped you take this information when you go to Washington, DC. She paid her taxes and then recently received a penalty because they didn’t pay the Credit Reduction Act. She remembered filling out the form at the end of the year and she questioned herself on the Credit Reduction Act and that they didn’t qualify for the credit. It turns out that in December this Act was passed.

The State of California borrowed money from the federal government for unemployment and they did not pay their bill so the federal government has come back to every employer that hires an employee and is saying that we have to pay this bill. She understands that every city wants to attract business, but not when you have the state and federal government charging taxes upon taxes the employer doesn’t know about. She will vote against every tax amendment on the ballot. It is time that our government starts using the money wisely and getting rid of waste and spending – more money is not going to help.

John Mucci, 15 Kensington Drive, Merced stated that he was here tonight to follow up on the three questions concerning the Gustine dispatcher services contract. He had asked these questions at the special meeting of June 7th and was told he would be provided answers.

As he stated on June 7,th had he been given the opportunity to discuss the change in working conditions for the dispatchers through the meet and confer process agreed to by the City in the Livingston Police Officers’ (LPOA) Memorandum of Understanding, he would not be here tonight.

On three occasions our operating engineers union has tried to correspond with the City Manager and each time there was no response. He emailed the City Manager this morning and still no response.

He was not here to take pot shots at the City Council, Mayor or City Manager. He is asking for legitimate answers for legitimate concerns from association members. Again, because they were not given the meet and confer process that is due them, they are not in communication or in a dialogue with the City Manager and this is the only reason he is here tonight. He awaits their answers and on behalf of the LPOA, he thanks you for your time.

City Manager Ramirez responded that there is a grievance that was submitted by the LPOA, specifically stressing and addressing the dispatch contract and because of that legal counsel has advised that we do not respond back to you and that is the reason no comment has been issued to you. There are differences in what you are stating and what we believe the facts to be. We have to follow the formal process.

Mr. Mucci commented that the three questions he asked had nothing to do with the grievance procedure.

Julio Valadez, P.O. Box 701 thanked Carlos Cervantes for dedicating his time to the kite festival. He also thanked Katherine Schell Rodriguez for donating toys. He gave a reminder that the 4th of July festival is July 6-8.



4. Resolution No. 2012-43 Initiating Proceedings Under the Landscape and Lighting Act of 1972, Division 15, Part 2 of the California Streets and Highways Code, et seq., Declaring the City’s Intention to Levy and Collect Assessments Within the City’s Landscape and Lighting Maintenance Assessment District for Fiscal Year 2012/2013, Approval of the Annual Engineer’s Report and Setting a Time and Place for a Public Hearing.


  • Resolution No. 2012-44 Initiating Proceedings Under the Benefit Assessment Act of 1982, Government Code Section 54717, et seq., Declaring the City’s Intention to Levy and Collect Assessments Within the City’s Benefit Assessment Districts for Fiscal Year 2012/2013, Approval of the Engineer’s Report and Setting a Time and Place for a Public Hearing.


  1. Approval of Independent Contract with Dossetti Consulting.

  1. Resolution Approving a Two (2) Year Memorandum of Understanding Between the City of Livingston and the AFSCME Public Works and Parks Employees Unit (item continued).

  1. Approval of Minutes of Meeting Held on April 17, 2012.

  1. Approval of Minutes of Meeting Held on May 1, 2012.

  1. Approval of Minutes of Meeting Held on May 15, 2012.

    1. Approval of Warrant Register Dated June 15, 2012.


Mayor Espinoza asked that Item 7 be continued.


Motion: M/S Espinoza/Samra to continue Item 7. The motion carried 3-0 by the following roll call vote:

AYES: Council Members: Espinoza, Land, and Samra

NOES: Council Members: None

ABSENT: Council Members: Aguilar, Vierra

Motion: M/S Land/Samra to approve consent agenda Items 4, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10, and 11. The motion carried 3-0 by the following roll call vote:

AYES: Council Members: Espinoza, Land, and Samra

NOES: Council Members: None

ABSENT: Council Members: Aguilar, Vierra




12. City Council to Approve Six Month Interim Extension for Solid Waste Contract with Gilton Solid Waste Management, Inc. and Authorize City Manager to Solicit a Request for Proposals (RFP).

City Manager Ramirez presented the item and announced that Gilton Solid Waste Management, Inc. will provide solid waste services for the next six months.

Motion: M/S Espinoza/Land to approve a Six Month Interim Extension for Solid Waste Contract with Gilton Solid Waste Management, Inc. and Authorize the City Manager to Solicit a Request for Proposals.

The motion carried 3-0 by the following roll call vote:

AYES: Council Members: Espinoza, Land, and Samra

NOES: Council Members: None

ABSENT: Council Members: Aguilar, Vierra

13. Fiscal Year 2012-2013 Budget Workshop #2: General Fund Discussion if Needed and Special Revenue Funds.

A second workshop for the Fiscal Year 2012-2013 Budget was held. Various funds were reviewed and discussed. No Council action was taken.




The meeting was adjourned by consensus at 8:20 p.m.


Deputy City Clerk of the City of Livingston

APPROVED: August 7, 2012


Mayor or Mayor ProTempore

The written meeting minutes reflect a summary of specific actions taken by the City Council. They do not necessarily reflect all of the comments or dialogue leading up to the action. All meetings are digitally recorded and are an official record of the meeting’s proceedings. Digitally recorded verbatim minutes are available, upon request, and may be obtained at Livingston City Hall.


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