Approval of Minutes of Meeting Held on December 17, 2013

Livingston, California

Notes from TheGardeningSnail: Parts of This page may have been prepared by running a PDF file through a program that converts Image to Text. Sorry if any Textual Gremlins crept in.

Meeting Date:  January 21, 2014

Agenda Item #9. Approval of Minutes of Meeting Held on December 17, 2013

MEETING MINUTES

 

REGULAR MEETING

LIVINGSTON CITY COUNCIL

DECEMBER 17, 2013

 

A Regular Meeting of the Livingston City Council was held on December 17, 2013, in the City Council Chambers with Mayor Espinoza presiding.

 

CLOSED SESSION

 

CALL TO ORDER

 

Mayor Espinoza called the meeting to order at 6:10 p.m.

ROLL CALL

 

Mayor Rodrigo Espinoza

Mayor Pro-Tem Gurpal Samra

Council Member Jim Soria

Council Member Arturo Sicairos (Excused Absence)

Council Member David Mendoza (Excused Absence)

 

Mayor Espinoza opened the meeting for public comments at 6:11 p.m. There were no comments from the public. The Council adjourned to Closed Session immediately thereafter to discuss the following matters:

1. Conference with Legal Counsel – Potential Litigation

[(Government Code Section 54956.9(d)(2)]

Number of Cases: 4

2. Conference with Labor Negotiator

(Government Code Section 54957.6)

Labor Negotiator: City Manager Jose Antonio Ramirez

Employee Organizations: All Represented City Employees

 

REGULAR MEETING

 

Mayor Espinoza called the meeting to order at 7:39 p.m.

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

 

The pledge of allegiance to the flag was recited.

ROLL CALL

 

Mayor Rodrigo Espinoza

Mayor Pro-Tem Gurpal Samra

Council Member Jim Soria

Council Member Arturo Sicairos

Council Member David Mendoza

CLOSED SESSION ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

None.

 

CHANGES TO THE AGENDA

 

None.

AWARDS, PRESENTATIONS, APOINTMENTS AND PROCLAMATIONS

 

1. Educational Presentation on “Smoke Shops” by Merced County Sheriff’s Deputy Ray Framstad.

Merced County Sheriff’s Deputy Ray Framstad stated that the youth is moving towards synthetic drug abuse and that many serious issues have been linked to substance or paraphernalia purchased at smoke shops.

Smoke shops sell many unregulated drugs like salvia, spice, nitrous-oxide, kratom, and bath-salts. All of these drugs can be sold legally and have effects similar to illegal drugs like marijuana, heroin, and oxycoton.

The Council moved the Public Hearing so that it may follow the presentation on smoke shops.

City Attorney Sanchez commented that the City recently received two applications for smoke shops near to the downtown corridor. After conversations with staff many concerns emerged in regards to the City’s lack of regulation and the downtown’s close proximity to elementary schools. This is why the City has elected to declare a moratorium, as it has the right to as shown in Government Code 65858 which declares that a moratorium will not last more than two years. Staff is requesting additional time to conduct research. Staff does not need to use all of the time allotted to resolve this matter.

City Attorney Sanchez added that staff is considering imposing regulations so that shops are not allowed to dedicate 15% of their floor space to the sale of tobacco and tobacco related products.

Mayor Pro-Tem Samra noted that this presentation has exposed him to the dangers that smoke shops can have on the youth. He is concerned that supermarkets might dedicate some space to sell unregulated drugs.

Mayor Espinoza opened the public hearing at 7:59 p.m.

Mike Sperry, 737 Main Street agrees with Mayor Pro-Tem Samra’s concerns. Any store owner could sell unregulated drugs with 15% of their floor space. Convenience stores might already be selling some of their products. In addition, youth may not purchase unregulated drugs here, but they may purchase them from other communities.

Mayor Espinoza closed the public hearing at 8:03 p.m. there being no further public comments.

Council Member Soria concurs with Deputy Framstad. A big issue with the pipes is that they are shaped to attract kids. He does not want this in his community.

Mayor Espinoza agrees that he does not want to see these issues in Livingston.

Council Member Sicairos thanked Deputy Framstad for his presentation.

Council Member Mendoza believes that there is a lot of tax revenue that may be lost to other communities if the City does not support smoke shops.

Mayor Espinoza replied that smoke shops would not fit in well with Livingston because the community is small and may not have the police force necessary to address smoke shop related challenges.

Motion: M/S Soria/Espinoza to adopt Urgency Ordinance No. 609 of the City of Livingston Making Findings and Extending a Temporary Moratorium on the Establishment and Operation of Smoke Shops and Smoking Lounges, to Become Effective Immediately. The motion carried 4-1 by the following roll call vote.

AYES: Council Members: Sicairos, Soria, Samra, Espinoza

NOES: Council Members: Mendoza

ABSENT: Council Members: None

 

ANNOUNCEMENTS AND REPORTS

 

Supervisor John Pedrozo Announcements and Reports.

None.

City Staff Announcements and Reports

Police Chief Chavez noted that the City is going to increase its patrol size because it is the holiday season. He added that the CEASE program recently got a tour of UC Merced and the Merced Sun Star. Students participated in a video conference with reporters in Sacramento. In addition he shared that the Kops for Kids program will be distributing holiday gifts on December 21st at the City Council Chambers. Chief Chavez then wished the community a happy holiday season.

Council Member Soria thanked Chief Chavez for participating in the Christmas parade. City Engineer Mario Gouveia gave a brief update on the status of the CMAC project. He discussed the neighborhoods that will be addressed first and elaborated on the concept of monolithic pours. He wished everyone a happy holiday season.

City Manager Announcements and Reports.

City Manager Ramirez announced that the City has been working on the SRI application. He commented that the City continues looking at grant opportunities. He believes that they have been very competitive in receiving grants. He also shared that the City is currently in the middle of fact finding Regarding employee negotiations.

City Council Members’ Announcements and Reports.

Council Member Sicairos wished the community a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. He thanked the Recreation Department for doing a great job organizing the Christmas Parade.

Council Member Soria shared that the Livingston High School is focusing on raising funds for Sober Grad. He urged the community to support the event and participate in any fundraising events.

Mayor Pro-Tem Samra wished everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

City Manager Ramirez announced that the affordable healthcare act is going into effect soon. Some organizations are charging for enrollment, but some are not. He invited the community to call City Hall if they have any questions.

Mayor’s Announcements and Reports.

None.

GRANT ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

1. San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District (SJVAPCD) Grant.

The City of Livingston has been awarded an $80,000 grant from the SJVAPCD New Alternative Fuel Purchase Program for the purchase of three electric vehicles and one electric motorcycle. Two of the electric vehicles will be utilized by the Public Works Department. The third vehicle will be used by the Police Department and Police Explorers. The motorcycle will be used by the Police Department for traffic purposes on an as needed basis.

City Manager Ramirez noted that Public Works can use these vehicles to do work.

 

PUBLIC HEARING

 

1. Urgency Ordinance of the City of Livingston Making Findings and Extending a Temporary

Moratorium on the Establishment and Operation of Smoke Shops and Smoking Lounges, to Become Effective Immediately.

Discussion and Council action taken earlier in the meeting.

 

CITIZENS COMMENTS

Mayor Espinoza opened Citizen Comments at 8:31 p.m.

Katherine Schell-Rodriguez, P.O. Box 163 relayed that she saw an advertisement in the Merced Sun-Star for a Public Works Director. She questioned what type of education and certification meet the minimum requirements for this position. In regards to the General Plan (that should be budget: TGS), she questioned if the departure of the Senior Accountant or Public Works Director is going to close the budget gap. She also asked staff to elaborate on what the acronym SRF stands for.

City Manager Ramirez commented that the Public Works Director must be a grade three in wastewater, and have experience/certification with sewer, and parks. In addition he noted that the Utility Rates Stakeholders’ Committee is looking at canceling their next meeting because staff may not be available to meet. In regards to the General Plan, the City will continue to budget funds. He noted that in regards to SRF, the CDPH EPA set aside 450 million dollars and the City submitted a pre-application and hopes to receive a 0% interest loan.

Mike Sperry, 737 Main Street wished everyone Happy Holidays. He commented that the City is looking at reducing the Police Department by 5%. There is a mass exodus of experienced officers leaving. The City needs experienced officers due to the number of unresolved shootings. In addition he wants to know who is running for Mayor/Council this election year.

Mayor Espinoza stated that unfortunately the City has no option but to lay off police officers. He believes that Chief Chavez has done a great job of hiring qualified and experienced officers.

Mayor Espinoza closed Citizen Comments at 8: 40 p.m.

 

CONSENT CALENDAR

 

2. Resolution No. 2013-56 Accepting the Grant Award and Authorizing the City Manager to Execute a Grant Agreement with the State Department of Forestry and Protection.

3. City Council Authorization to Purchase Police Building Security Cameras and Portable Police Radios Utilizing the 2013 State Homeland Security Grant Program.

4. Approval of Minutes of Meeting Held on November 5, 2013.

5. Approval of Minutes of Meeting Held on November 19, 2013.

6. Approval of Warrant Register Dated November 25, 2013.

7. Approval of Warrant Register Dated December 12, 2013.

Motion: M/S: Samra/Sicairos to approve the consent calendar. The motion carried 5-0 by the following roll call vote

AYES: Council Members: Sicairos, Mendoza, Soria, Samra, Espinoza

NOES: Council Members: None

ABSENT: Council Members: None

DISCUSSION AND POTENTIAL ACTION ITEMS

 

8. City Council to Provide Staff Direction for Appointments to the Planning Commission.

City Manager Ramirez introduced the item. He commented that current Planning Commission member, Frank Castellanos’ term ends at the end of this month. Mr. Castellanos would like to serve another term. The Council has the opportunity to reappoint or re-advertise the position.

The public comment section was opened and subsequently closed at 8:43 p.m.

M/S: Mendoza/Sicairos to reappoint Frank Castellanos to the Planning Commission to a four year term. The motion carried 5-0 by the following roll call vote.

AYES: Council Members: Sicairos, Mendoza, Soria, Samra, Espinoza

NOES: Council Members: None

ABSENT: Council Members: None

 

ADJOURNMENT

 

Mayor Espinoza adjourned the meeting at 8:45 p.m.

______________________________

City Clerk of the City of Livingston

APPROVED: January 21, 2014

_____________________________

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.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s