Livermore City Council Meeting - April 8, 2019
CALL TO ORDER / PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
PROCLAMATIONS AND PRESENTATIONS
COUNCIL COMMITTEE REPORTS AND MATTERS INITIATED
April 8, 2019
CALL TO ORDER - The Closed Session of the City Council was called to order by Mayor John Marchand at 6:31 pm, in the City Council Chambers, 3575 Pacific Avenue, Livermore, California.
ROLL CALL - Present: Mayor John Marchand, Vice Mayor Robert W. Carling, and Council Members Bob Coomber, Trish Munro, and Bob Woerner.
OPPORTUNITY FOR THE PUBLIC TO ADDRESS THE CITY COUNCIL REGARDING CLOSED SESSION ITEMS.
ADJOURN TO CLOSED SESSION
1. Existing Litigation. To meet with the City Attorney regarding pending litigation pursuant to Government Code section 54956.9(d)(1). Discussion in open session would prejudice the position of the City in litigation. (Two cases)
City of Livermore v. County of Alameda, et al., Alameda County Superior Court Case No. RG18906336
City of Livermore v. Lewis, et al., Alameda County Superior Court Case No. RG18931843
CALL TO ORDER / PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE - The meeting of the City Council was called to order by Mayor John Marchand at 7:00 pm.
1.01 ROLL CALL - Present: Mayor John Marchand, Vice Mayor Robert W. Carling and Council Members Bob Coomber, Trish Munro, and Bob Woerner.
1.02 PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE
1.03 REPORT OF ACTION TAKEN IN CLOSED SESSION
City Attorney Jason Alcala said there was no reportable action.
PROCLAMATIONS AND PRESENTATIONS
2.01 Proclaiming April 26, 2019 as Arbor Day.
Mayor Marchand presented the proclamation to Maintenance and Golf Operations Manager Jeff Shafer.
2.02 Proclaiming May 2019 as Community Service Recognition Month
Mayor Marchand presented the proclamation to Maintenance and Golf Operations Manager Jeff Shafer and representatives from Livermore Area Recreation and Park District and Livermore Valley Joint Unified School District.
Greg Scott, Livermore, spoke regarding issues relating to homelessness in Livermore.
Brent Siler, Livermore, spoke regarding homelessness issues, including micro-housing and a system of connecting unsheltered populations with those who needed help.
Jim Goff, Livermore, expressed concerns regarding the intersection of Patterson Pass and Greenville Road.
In response to questions by Mayor Marchand, City Engineer Cheri Sheets said the Patterson Pass and Greenville Road intersection project was going out to bid and would be underway in the next several months.
Mony Nop, Livermore, spoke regarding his upcoming community event in partnership with Kids Against Hunger to collect food for impoverished countries.
John Stein, Livermore, spoke regarding potential negative impacts from the proposed two tunnels intercepting the Sacramento River and suggested the City Council reconsider support for the legislation.
ON THE MOTION OF CM WOERNER, SECONDED BY VM CARLING, AND CARRIED ON A 5-0 VOTE, THE CITY COUNCIL APPROVED THE CONSENT CALENDAR.
4.01 Approval of draft minutes - March 18, 2019 City Council and Planning Commission special meeting workshop; and March 25, 2019 regular City Council meeting.
4.02 Adoption of Ordinance 2085 amending Municipal Code Chapter 11.08, Airport Rules and Regulations.
4.03 Resolution 2019-040 authorizing execution of an agreement with Trafficware Group, Inc., in the amount of $235,000, for upgrading central traffic control software, Master Traffic Signal Control System Upgrade, Project No. 1991-44.
4.04 Resolution 2019-041 authorizing execution of the Amended and Restated Affordable Housing Regulatory Agreement and Declaration of Restrictive Covenants with Chestnut Square Family Associates, L.P. Location: 1665 Chestnut Street.
4.05 Resolution 2019-042 adopting City Council Norms and Values established January 7, 2019.
4.06 Resolution 2019-043 adopting the City Council Meeting Rules of Procedure, Procedures for Teleconferenced Meetings, and Preferred Method of Recording City Council Meetings.
5. PUBLIC HEARINGS - NONE.
6.01 Discussion and direction regarding the Holmes Street Wall Abatement Program and Holmes Street Wall Replacement Program.
Recommendation: Staff recommended the City Council adopt a resolution:
1. Approving the Holmes Street Incentivized Wall Abatement Program to identify corrective measures to remedy the conditions contributing to the wall's deterioration, and to abate the nuisances if they are not corrected in a timely manner; authorizing appropriation of $650,000 for the program; and authorizing a public financing program for residents needing financial assistance; and
2. Approving the Holmes Street Wall Replacement Program, including replacement of the decorative block wall with an 8-foot solid wood fence, and authorizing appropriation of $1,100,000 for design and construction of the replacement fence.
City Engineer Cheri Sheets and Inspection and Neighborhood Preservation Manager Doug Martin presented the staff report.
Mayor Marchand invited public comment.
Judy Haywood, Livermore, spoke regarding negative impacts to her and her property if the item were approved; she asked for the City to provide something feasible for everyone.
John Stein, Livermore, suggested looking at masonry options for fencing; and supported an integrated wall rather than a separate sound wall and fence.
In response to questions by VM Carling, Ms. Sheets said the City was identifying properties where the fences could be integrated or separated; proposals would be prepared for each property owner. She said analysis had shown that the lifecycle of a wooden fence was approximately equal to that of a masonry fence.
Mayor Marchand said the Holmes Street wall was a decorative wall and the City was trying to mitigate public safety hazards and aesthetic impacts. He said staff would work with residents and homeowners.
In response to questions by CM Munro regarding trees on Ms. Haywood's property, Ms. Sheets said specialized walls to retain existing landscaping might be possible and all options would be presented.
In response to questions by VM Carling, Ms. Sheets said street trees would be replanted, along with hedge material and irrigation adjacent to the fence. She confirmed that the fence would be straight along property lines.
CM Woerner supported irrigation and landscaping to prevent graffiti.
ON THE MOTION OF MAYOR MARCHAND, SECONDED BY CM MUNRO AND CARRIED ON A 5-0 VOTE, THE CITY COUNCIL ADOPTED THE FOLLOWING RESOLUTION:
Resolution 2019-044 approving the Holmes Street Incentivized Wall Abatement Program to identify corrective measures to remedy the conditions contributing to the wall's deterioration, and to abate the nuisances if they are not corrected in a timely manner; authorizing appropriation of $650,000 for the program; and authorizing a public financing program for residents needing financial assistance; and approving the Holmes Street Wall Replacement Program, including replacement of the decorative block wall with an 8-foot solid wood fence, and authorizing appropriation of $1,100,000 for design and construction of the replacement fence.
6.02 2019 Innovation and Economic Development Strategic Plan.
Recommendation: Staff recommended the City Council receive the report and provide direction regarding the 2019 Innovation and Economic Development Strategic Plan.
Director of Innovation and Economic Development Adam Van de Water presented the staff report and responded to questions from the City Council.
VM Carling noted the challenges of integrating the lab's foreign nationals into the community; he supported finding ways to make them feel more welcome. He noted the importance of looking for ways to change the City's behavior if things were not working, including ending activities that had not paid off. Mayor Marchand spoke regarding efforts to engage foreign nationals through the Chamber of Commerce and iGate.
In response to questions by CM Munro, Mr. Van de Water said there were a range of issues affecting the housing and jobs balance for the laboratories. He proposed working directly with the labs and other economic sectors to identify factors that made hiring challenging. He said the region had undersupplied housing, and although Livermore had a strong balance, the imbalance could impact economic development.
CM Munro said she wanted to include consideration about minimizing environmental impacts. Regarding reaching other populations, she noted demographic challenges of the technology field and said she would like to include Latinx, unsheltered, and youth populations. CM Woerner suggested adding the arts groups to the list of stakeholders.
CM Coomber suggested continuing to develop the wine industry to make it recognizable as an industry leader worldwide. Mr. Van de Water noted that a hotel was needed to market Livermore as a weekend getaway rather than a day experience; he confirmed that Alameda County was revisiting rules surrounding bed and breakfasts.
Mayor Marchand invited public comment.
Greg Scott, Livermore, expressed concerns regarding accelerating economic disparity and supported a university to bring innovation.
Brent Siler, Livermore, said office space was needed; he suggested bringing tech companies to Livermore with a consolidated center in the industrial areas.
Mayor Marchand spoke regarding the perception that real tech companies had to be located in Silicon Valley and noted several companies that had relocated to Livermore. He said Livermore's quality of life and educated workforce attracted companies, and spoke regarding regional efforts to address imbalances between jobs and housing.
VM Carling said the tech center proposed by Mr. Siler was an interesting idea.
ON THE MOTION OF CM WOERNER, SECONDED BY CM MUNRO AND CARRIED ON A 5-0 VOTE, THE CITY COUNCIL RECEIVED THE REPORT.
THE CITY COUNCIL RECESSED FROM 8:48-9:00 PM.
6.03 Discussion and direction regarding the Valley Link Rail Transit project and Isabel Neighborhood Specific Plan.
Recommendation: Staff recommended the City Council receive an update on the Valley Link Rail Transit project, authorize staff to update the environmental documentation for the Isabel Neighborhood Plan, and direct staff to return to Council with documents necessary to readopt the Isabel Neighborhood Specific Plan.
Assistant City Engineer Bob Vinn, Assistant Planner Ashley McBride, and Principal Planner Stephen Riley presented the staff report.
In response to questions by CM Coomber, Mr. Vinn said the Valley Link team had engaged BART regarding acquiring land needed to build the project. He said the proposed alignment would follow the freeway median, utilize a second right-of-way over the Altamont, and might lease track or right-of-way from Union Pacific within the existing railway corridor.
In response to questions by CM Munro, Ms. McBride said the cost of the supplemental environmental impact report (EIR) was approximately $175,000; City Manager Marc Roberts confirmed that the City was eligible for up to $200,000 in grant funding for the report.
In response to questions by CM Munro, Mr. Vinn said there was an expectation of some transit-oriented development for all of the proposed stations. He said if Livermore didn't have any housing, it might be detrimental to moving forward.
In response to questions by CM Woerner, Mr. Roberts said the average number of units in the project was not increasing Livermore's general plan buildout; rather, it was identifying where growth would occur. He said staff could look at financial feasibility and partnering with outside funding sources to emphasize the lower end of housing. He confirmed that the housing component was contingent upon the Valley Link project.
Michael Tree, Executive Director, Tri-Valley San Joaquin Valley Regional Rail Authority, spoke regarding funding opportunities for the Valley Link project, saying that housing would be key for competitive funding.
In response to questions by Mayor Marchand, Mr. Riley said that the airport protection plan had been established to protect the airport from noise complaints.
Mayor Marchand invited public comment.
Michael Ferrucci, Citizens for Balanced Growth, opposed building the Isabel plan until a commuter rail station was operational and successfully utilized.
Donna Cabanne, Livermore, opposed the Isabel plan at this time and supported building on infill sites in existing neighborhoods.
John Stein, Livermore, expressed concerns regarding the project, such as quality of life, financial stability, proximity to the airport, and impacts to the scenic corridor.
Sblend Sblendorio, Innovation Tri-Valley Leadership Group, supported the Valley Link project and Isabel Neighborhood Plan; he said the transportation project would be tied to housing.
Josh, Livermore, said he generally favored a transit system and expressed concerns regarding high-density housing in Livermore.
Dawn Argula, Livermore Valley Chamber of Commerce, supported the staff recommendation and the Isabel Neighborhood Plan.
VM Carling and CM Coomber supported moving forward with the plan. In response to comments about looking like Dublin, CM Munro noted that a complete plan provided better control over development.
CM Woerner said the Council was preserving options by spending money on the EIR. He said conversations were happening in Sacramento and other cities were stepping up; the area was zoned for various things and the neighborhood plan was a better option.
Mayor Marchand spoke regarding the project's positive impacts to traffic and said there was momentum behind Valley Link. He spoke regarding the types of communities that younger people wanted, saying the project would be a game-changer because it allowed connectivity that would attract job sites for those in the tech sector and provide housing that Livermore didn't presently have.
In response to questions by Mayor Marchand, Mr. Vinn confirmed the proposed housing in the project was at the minimum necessary to attract a grocery store.
ON THE MOTION BY VM CARLING, SECONDED BY CM COOMBER AND CARRIED ON A 5-0 VOTE, THE CITY COUNCIL RECEIVED THE UPDATE, AUTHORIZED STAFF TO UPDATE THE ENVIRONMENTAL DOCUMENTATION FOR THE ISABEL NEIGHBORHOOD PLAN, AND DIRECTED STAFF TO RETURN TO COUNCIL WITH DOCUMENTS NECESSARY TO READOPT THE ISABEL NEIGHBORHOOD SPECIFIC PLAN.
6.04 2018 National Citizen Survey results.
Recommendation: The report was for information only. No action was required.
Deputy City Manager Christine Martin presented the staff report.
THE CITY COUNCIL RECEIVED THE REPORT.
COUNCIL COMMITTEE REPORTS AND MATTERS INITIATED
7.01 Council Committee Reports and Matters Initiated by City Manager, City Attorney, Staff, and Council Members.
Livermore Amador Valley Transit Authority (LAVTA) CM Coomber said he attended the meeting on April 1, 2019.
Historic Signage The City Council directed staff to prepare information regarding placement of signboards explaining Livermore's history on City-owned paths and trails in the viticulture areas, including possible coordination with Livermore Area Recreation and Park District.
Employee Retirements CM Munro, CM Woerner, and VM Carling said on March 28, 2019 they attended retirement events for Public Works Director Darren Greenwood and Police Lieutenant John Hurd; Mayor Marchand also attended Lieutenant Hurd's event.
League of California Cities (LOCC) CM Munro said on March 29, 2019 she attended public policy meetings in Costa Mesa regarding community services.
Livermore Cultural Arts Council (LCAC) CM Munro said she attended the meeting on April 3, 2019 where there was discussion regarding storage needs.
Legislative Working Group CM Munro said on April 5, 2019 she had been appointed to the Association of Bay Area Governments and Metropolitan Transportation Commission legislative working group to monitor bills making their way through the legislature.
Homelessness Issues CM Munro expressed appreciation to Mr. Scott for his continued comments regarding homelessness in Livermore; she said that Livermore did the best it could and it was frustrating.
Livermore Amador Valley Transit Authority (LAVTA) CM Woerner said he attended the meeting where it was reported that Wheels was doing well.
In response to questions by CM Woerner, City Manager Marc Roberts said the fences along the west side of Veterans Way would be removed within the next two weeks.
Stopwaste.org VM Carling said he attended the meeting on March 27, 2019.
Livermore High School VM Carling said he participated in a panel regarding gun violence and safety in schools at Livermore High School on March 28, 2019.
East Bay Innovation Awards VM Carling said on March 28, 2019 he attended the awards event.
Eagle Court of Honor VM Carling said he attended an Eagle Court of Honor ceremony on March 30, 2019.
Planning Commission Vacancy The City Council directed staff to advertise the Planning Commission vacancy caused by the resignation of Steven Spedowfski, including review of applications from the four recently-interviewed candidates, along with any new applications received, followed by interview of selected candidates.
Alameda County Transportation Commission (ACTC) Mayor Marchand said he attended the Planning, Policy, and Legislative committee meeting on April 8, 2019, where there was review of proposed bills.
ADJOURNMENT - at 10:33 pm to a regular City Council meeting on Monday, April 22, 2019 at 7:00 pm, Council Chambers, 3575 Pacific Avenue, Livermore.
JOHN P. MARCHAND, MAYOR
SARAH BUNTING, CITY CLERK