SANTA ROSA CITY COUNCIL MEETING MINUTES
(APPROVED BY COUNCIL 9/14/99)
TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 7, 1999
COUNCIL CHAMBER, CITY HALL, 100 SANTA ROSA AVENUE
REGULAR MEETING

4:00 P.M. (CITY COUNCIL CHAMBER)

1. CALL MEETING TO ORDER

Mayor Condron called the meeting to order at 4:03 p.m. in the City Council Chamber.

2. CITY COUNCIL ROLL CALL

Present were Mayor Condron, Vice Mayor Martini, and Councilmembers Evans, Vas Dupre, Rabinowitsh, Runyan, and Wright.

3. PROCLAMATIONS/PRESENTATIONS

3.1 PROCLAMATION - CELEBRATION OF THE RUSSIAN RIVER AND ITS WATERSHED

Bill Rush, representing the Russian River Watershed Committee, accepted a proclamation declaring the nine days from September 18-26, 1999, as Celebration of the Russian River and Its Watershed.

3.2 PRESENTATION - PG&E DONATION TO PRINCE GREENWAY

Mayor Condron presented Tim Kelly with a Certificate of Appreciation for PG&E's $10,000 donation to the Prince Greenway.

4. CITIZEN PUBLIC APPEARANCES

Jack Osborne displayed and cited excerpts from a copy of the Attorney General's Opinion on the Brown Act and stated that Council should avoid serial communications regarding the contents of items on the agenda.

Claudia Turner discussed her continuing concerns related to her experiences with the Police Department, and what she believes was police misconduct, as well as the failure of the Mayor and City Manager to respond to her concerns.

Geoff Johnson referred to and reviewed a complaint which he mailed to the District Attorney related to the amended Theater Agreement. Mr. Johnson's concern is that a Brown Act violation(s) occurred related to negotiations which took place after Council adopted a resolution authorizing the Mayor to execute the Agreement. A copy of Mr. Johnson's letter was provided to the Council prior to the commencement of the meeting and is on file in the office of the City Clerk.

Michael Fiumara read an excerpt from the August 1999 Draft Environmental Impact Report prepared by the Sonoma-Mendocino Emergency Medical Services Agency related to helicopter and ambulance noise which will be generated by the proposed Trauma Center. The Draft EIR pointed out that the noise would be worse in the vicinity of Memorial Hospital and that Sutter Hospital is the "environmentally superior alternative." He said that the next step in this process is a public hearing which will be held at 7:00 p.m. on September 9 in the Sonoma County Board of Supervisor's Board Room. He said that Santa Rosa's Planning staff does not dispute the findings in the Draft EIR. He then urged the City to take an official position against recommending Memorial Hospital to be the Trauma Center for this region. He also asked Council to respond to his request in writing.

Shirlee Zane, Executive Director for the Council on Aging, spoke on behalf of low-income senior citizens who face a dire shortage of affordable housing in the City. She particularly discussed her advocacy for those seniors who live in Santa Rosa mobilehome parks and, specifically, Rincon Valley Mobilehome Estates. She cited data related to the number of units lost through Section 8 contract terminations when property owners opt out of the program. She explained that mobile homes have met some of the needs, but approximately 50% of the tenants in some Santa Rosa mobilehome parks have incomes which are insufficient. Even a small rent increase could force them out of their housing. She asked Council to help preserve the option of mobilehome housing for low-income people.

Duane DeWitt, Roseland resident, referenced F.D. Roosevelt's "fourth freedom," "the freedom from want," and discussed in detail a situation involving two homeless people which occurred last Sunday where he was working as a volunteer caretaker. He referred to the minutes of the goal-setting session which indicate that identifying sources of revenue for recreational facilities and youth centers is a top priority of the Council. He expressed concern that this goal would take a higher priority than providing affordable housing. He asked what Council is planning to do to solve the affordable housing situation in the City and reiterated that affordable housing must be top priority.

Doug Van Dyke, President of the Downtown Association, said that the Santa Parade has been a Downtown tradition for the past fifteen years. For the last ten years, the Santa Rosa Plaza has underwritten the entire cost of that parade. However, the Association has assumed responsibility for the Santa Parade this year. He referred to a communication from the Association requesting that the funds which are left over (approximately $15,000) from the Santa Rosa Downtown Association, which terminated in 1994, be used to underwrite this year's parade which is estimated to cost approximately $17,000. He pointed out that approximately 1,500 children participate in this parade and it draws more than 8,000 spectators. He briefly discussed the plans for this year's parade. He said the Association is not asking for a reduction or an amendment to costs for City fees and services, but rather for authorization to use the funds that have sat dormant for several years.

Following a brief discussion regarding the need to move forward on this request, it was MOVED by Councilmember Wright, seconded by Vice Mayor Martini, AND CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY TO ADD THE REQUEST FOR FUNDS FROM THE SANTA ROSA DOWNTOWN ASSOCIATION (A.K.A. DOWNTOWN DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION) FOR THE SANTA PARADE TO THE SEPTEMBER 14, 1999, COUNCIL AGENDA.

Mayor Condron stated that the homeless issue and low-income housing are very high priorities for Council. She discussed the steps the City has taken, and is continuing to take, to both preserve and provide low-income, affordable housing units, pointing out that more units have been built this past year than during the last five years.

Mayor Condron said because the decision regarding the Trauma Center is to be made at the County level, Council has not taken a stand on it.

Mayor Condron explained that Council is familiar with the issue related to serial communications. She stated that no private meetings or serial communications were held related to the Theater Agreement.

There was a brief discussion regarding the goal-setting session held on August 31. The sentence to which Mr. DeWitt referred is misleading in that Council did not prioritize those goals. That sentence will be deleted.

Discussion followed regarding the Trauma Center. Councilmember Vas Dupre pointed out that because the Center concerns many of Santa Rosa's residents, it is something which the Council should study. Vice Mayor Martini discussed the City's past ability to deal with a Conditional Use Permit related to the Trauma Center, but pointed out that the decisions pending are the appropriateness of a Trauma Center, which has been determined, and its location. The forum/deciding body for this issue is the Senior Health Officer for the County. Although Council can discuss this issue and give an opinion, their involvement in this matter may create false hopes and misdirection.

Councilmember Evans pointed out that the public hearing to consider the Draft EIR has been scheduled for September 9. She questioned how much time the Council has to provide input on this document, but noted that it wouldn't hurt for the Council to provide that input even though they are not the decision-making body.

It was noted that Council has discussed the issue of helicopters in the vicinity of Memorial Hospital. However, because the Trauma Center is not in the City's jurisdiction, Council has not discussed the Trauma Center itself.

Mayor Condron suggested it would be appropriate for Council to review the Draft EIR and to place this matter on the Agenda in two weeks (September 21) at which time Council can discuss whether they want to provide input or discuss this matter further. It was noted that the written comments to the Draft Environmental Report must be submitted by September 23.

Councilmember Rabinowitsh referred to comments regarding affordable housing for seniors and said that a subcommittee, consisting of himself, Mayor Condron, and Councilmember Wright, is looking at affordable housing policies, including senior housing. He stated that this issue is a very high priority to the Council.

Vice Mayor Martini stated that he did not meet with any of the Councilmembers, nor discuss with them on the telephone, the matter of the Downtown Theater Agreement. He said he was supportive of the original Agreement, as well as the modified Agreement. Councilmember Runyan added that he met only with the City Manager and City Attorney and that he did not have any conversations with the Council on the subject of the amended Agreement. Councilmember Wright said that neither did she have any conversations with the Council on this matter after the meeting of August 17 and that she was not aware of any negotiations occurring after that time. Councilmember Evans said that she did not have any such conversations with Council. However, she indicated that she did speak with the City Attorney by telephone to reiterate the comments she made during the August 17 public hearing. Councilmember Rabinowitsh said he also had a conversation with the City Attorney, but that he was not involved whatsoever in any negotiations.

5. APPROVAL OF MINUTES - Minutes of August 24 and Study Session of August 31, 1999

Jack Osborne referred to the August 31, 1999, minutes and explained why he does not believe Council can legally adjourn to an informal discussion. He suggested this would be a violation of the Brown Act.

City Attorney Rene Chouteau explained that the meeting with the Teen Council was posted on the agenda and was part of the agenda. Technically, the meeting was moved to a discussion in another room, although it was not adjourned as a meeting.

Councilmember Evans requested that page 14 of the August 24, 1999, minutes be corrected to indicate that she "originally opposed (not proposed)" the advertising policy on buses.

MOVED by Councilmember Wright, seconded by Vice Mayor Martini, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY TO APPROVE THE AUGUST 24, 1999, MINUTES WITH A CORRECTION ON PAGE 14 AS REQUESTED.

MOVED by Councilmember Wright, seconded by Vice Mayor Martini, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY TO APPROVE THE AUGUST 31, 1999, MINUTES WITH THE DELETION OF THE SENTENCE REFERRING TO IDENTIFYING REVENUE FOR RECREATIONAL FACILITIES AND YOUTH CENTERS AS A TOP PRIORITY AND CLARIFYING THE SECTION RELATED TO ADJOURNMENT (I.E., THE MAYOR MOVED THE MEETING TO THE CYPRESS ROOM FOR THE INFORMAL DISCUSSION WITH THE TEEN COUNCIL).

Councilmember Vas Dupre asked for a response to some of the questions raised regarding the Brown Act. City Attorney Chouteau said the comment was made that Council somehow acted by not reconsidering the Theater Agreement. Council has a right to reconsider any item on which a decision has been made. That desire to reconsider must be expressed at the same or next meeting. He said he had advised Council that if any member wished to reconsider the Theater Agreement they could move to do so, but it would have to be placed on the agenda for a subsequent meeting. No Councilmember expressed an interest in reconsideration. He, therefore, does not consider this to be an action of the Council, although that is how Mr. Johnson interprets it in his letter.

6. STATEMENTS OF ABSTENTION BY COUNCILMEMBERS

Vice Mayor Martini and Councilmember Rabinowitsh referenced Item 7.2 which deals with an overlay program in the neighborhoods of their residences. The City's Right-of-Way Agent has reviewed this matter and has provided written opinions that the project will not have a financial affect on the value of Vice Mayor Martini's or Councilmember Rabinowitsh's residences. Therefore, they will be acting on that item.

7. CONSENT ITEMS

7.1 RESOLUTION - FINAL MAP APPROVAL - SKYHAWK UNIT NO. 6

7.2 RESOLUTION - BID AWARD - 1999-00 OVERLAY PROGRAM RECONSTRUCT

7.3 RESOLUTIONS - USE OF COPS GRANT FUNDS FOR OFFICERS AT MONTGOMERY/SLATER AND PINER/COMSTOCK

Jack Osborne referred to Item 7.2 and asked if this is the program which was recently discussed. City Manager Blackman confirmed that it is the one approved in this fiscal year's budget.

Councilmember Vas Dupre asked for a definition of "substantial conformance" as referenced in the staff report for Item 7.1. City Manager Blackman explained that when a final map is received, if there has been no basic change in the topographical layout or design, or a shift in any of the grading plans, and the drainage plans and lot configurations are basically the same, etc., the final map is found to be conforming to the tentative map and as such must be approved. City Attorney Chouteau added that this recommendation means the City Engineer has reviewed the final map and made the determination that the map is the same as the tentative map. The issue of contour grading as compared to pad grading is not an issue which would be resolved by the City Engineer. It would come to the Council. City Manager Blackman added that the Planning staff closely monitors subdivisions as they relate to this issue and said that the time to review it is during the tentative map stage.

MOVED by Vice Mayor Martini, seconded by Councilmember Runyan, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY TO ADOPT AND WAIVE THE READING OF THE TEXTS OF:

RESOLUTION NO. 24114 ENTITLED: RESOLUTION OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SANTA ROSA APPROVING MAP FOR SUBDIVISION ENTITLED SKYHAWK UNIT NO. 6 AND ACCEPTING ALL OFFERS OF DEDICATION CONTAINED THEREON (Item 7.1).

RESOLUTION NO. 24115 ENTITLED: RESOLUTION OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SANTA ROSA ACCEPTING BID AND AWARDING CONTRACT NO. 99-018 TO NORTH BAY CONSTRUCTION, INC. FOR 1999-00 OVERLAY PROGRAM/RECONSTRUCT (Item 7.2).

RESOLUTION NO. 24116 ENTITLED: RESOLUTION OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SANTA ROSA AUTHORIZING ACCEPTANCE OF FUNDS AND APPROVING THE EXECUTION OF AN AGREEMENT WITH SANTA ROSA CITY SCHOOLS FOR A POLICE OFFICER AT PINER HIGH SCHOOL AND COMSTOCK MIDDLE SCHOOL (Item 7.3).

RESOLUTION NO. 24117 ENTITLED: RESOLUTION OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SANTA ROSA AUTHORIZING THE USE OF FEDERAL COP FUNDS FOR TWO OFFICERS (Item 7.3).

8. SCHEDULED ITEMS

8.1 REPORT - WAIVER OF COMPETITIVE BIDDING AND CMAS PURCHASE OF BACKHOE LOADERS

Bob Pacheco, Senior Buyer, made the staff presentation. Purchasing has received requisitions for the purchase of three backhoe loaders. Two units are replacements and one is a new addition to the City's fleet.

The State of California establishes Multiple Award Schedules (CMAS) with those manufacturers or contractors that offer products or services which are currently on an existing multiple award schedule with the Federal General Services Administration or other competitively negotiated or awarded multiple award contract.

The contract for backhoe loaders was negotiated by the Federal General Services Administration and was subsequently awarded to John Deere Company, Raleigh, North Carolina. Under the State of California CMAS program, the backhoe loaders are available from Empire Equipment Co. of Rohnert Park. By exercising this procurement method, the City takes full advantage of the State of California and Federal Government's purchasing power for this type of equipment.

The total base price of the three backhoe loaders is $218,157.93. This price includes optional equipment, sales tax and delivery. The dealer is also offering a $20,000 trade-in value for the City's two backhoe loaders being replaced. Therefore, the total net price of the three backhoe loaders is $198,157.93. Under this procurement process the State charges a 1.21% service charge on the total price of the procurement less sales tax.

Because the CMAS contract was a negotiated award, a price/cost analysis was performed and the price of the recommended award can be considered fair and reasonable.

Delivery of the three backhoe loaders purchased through the State of California (CMAS) Program is thirty days after receipt of purchase order from the City.

It is recommended by the Administrative Services, Utilities, and Public Works Departments that the City Council, by resolution, authorize a waiver of competitive bidding and authorize the Purchasing Agent to issue a purchase order for the purchase of three backhoe loaders via the State of California CMAS program to Empire Equipment Co. of Santa Rosa. Total amount of purchase is $200,613.47, which includes a $20,000 trade-in value for the City's two backhoe loaders being replaced, sales tax, delivery and 1.21% State service charge.

Jack Osborne asked which dealers of heavy equipment were contacted by the City to determine what was available and at what price. He also asked if local dealers were researched. He requested that bids from local heavy equipment dealers be sought for these types of contracts.

Mr. Pacheco explained that the John Deere loader offers a specification that fits the City's requirements. Caterpillar also manufactures a loader that meets that specification, but the price for that backhoe loader is much higher than the John Deere loader. This information was included in the cost analysis.

MOVED by Councilmember Vas Dupre, seconded by Councilmember Wright, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY TO ADOPT AND WAIVE THE READING OF THE TEXT OF:

RESOLUTION NO. 24118 ENTITLED: RESOLUTION OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SANTA ROSA WAIVING FORMAL COMPETITIVE BIDDING AND ACCEPTING PROPOSAL FROM EMPIRE EQUIPMENT CO. FOR THE PURCHASE OF THREE BACKHOE LOADERS THROUGH THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA CMAS PROGRAM (Item 8.1).

8.2 REPORT - AMENDMENT TO COUNCIL PROCEDURE MANUAL

City Attorney Chouteau made the staff presentation. Section 10(C)(3) of the Council Manual of Procedure indicates that at the commencement of public hearings all communications and petitions which have been submitted in regard to the public hearing shall be read aloud or a synopsis of the communication or petition shall be given. This procedure is time consuming, unnecessary, and contrary to the practice of the Council.

It is recommended by the City Attorney and the City Clerk that the City Council, by resolution, amend Section 10(C)(3) of the Council Manual of Procedure.

Jack Osborne suggested the original purpose of this policy was so the public would know what type of input Council is receiving. He questioned the feasibility of the proposed change.

Duane DeWitt, Roseland resident, expressed concern that the policy doesn't require the reading of resolutions either in full or by title only. He referred to the Grand Jury Report of five years ago which raised concerns about it being difficult for the public to participate in the process because of the way meetings were handled. He said he hopes that whenever a subcommittee, or other group acting with the authority of the Council, meets minutes will be maintained. As an example, he referenced the Joint Roseland City and County meetings which have been held for two years and for which no minutes have been kept which would reflect the discussions held or decisions made.

Vice Mayor Martini clarified that no decisions are made at the Joint Roseland City and County subcommittee meetings. Those meetings serve as a forum for the purpose of coordinating what is occurring with the two agencies. However, any actions must be taken or decisions made by the County Board of Supervisors or the Santa Rosa City Council.

City Attorney Chouteau clarified that Council does not always read resolutions by title; i.e., when they are Consent Items. The subject matter of the resolutions is contained on the agenda and it is not required to read those titles, but it is within Council's discretion to do so if they so desire.

MOVED by Councilmember Wright, seconded by Vice Mayor Martini, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY TO ADOPT AND WAIVE THE READING OF THE TEXT OF:

RESOLUTION NO. 24119 ENTITLED: RESOLUTION OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SANTA ROSA AMENDING THE CITY COUNCIL MANUAL OF PROCEDURES (Item 8.2).

8.3 REPORT - MANDATORY WATER CONNECTIONS - ROSELAND RED ZONE

Larry Brown, Deputy Director of Utilities, made the staff presentation. He explained that Council is being asked to introduce an ordinance that was originally presented to Council in June. The ordinance gives the Council broad powers related to contaminated ground water supply and enables the City to order connection to the City's water system specifically within the area known as the Red Zone. He displayed a copy of the map depicting the Red Zone.

Mr. Brown reminded Council that, in June, they asked staff to follow up on issues related to financial arrangements for residents in the Red Zone and the types of things which may impact both those residents and the City. Since that time, the Action Plan was approved by the Regional Water Quality Control Board. This document is essentially an agreement between the Board and the County. Pertinent to this discussion, the Plan puts the County in the position of basically paying for all of the connections of parcels within the Red Zone with the exception of three which are in the City limits and with the exception of the properties on Emmy Lou Court. Mr. Brown discussed various aspects of the Action Plan. Mr. Brown said that many of the properties which the City had thought would need to be placed on a loan program will now be funded by the County for connection to the City's water system. He briefly referenced properties that will not be eligible for funding by the County but which will be eligible for other grant funding.

Mr. Brown said there is a tentative agreement between the City and the Regional Water Quality Control Board for funding the Emmy Lou Court project. The proposed funding mechanism would devote one year of funding from Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds which were previously dedicated to West Avenue to Emmy Lou Court. The Regional Water Quality Control Board would pay for the connections to the line, the demand fees, and any necessary on-site plumbing or wells that need to be abandoned. He clarified that as soon as the language has been agreed to, this agreement will be brought to Council for approval.

It is recommended by the Board of Public Utilities and the Utilities Department that the City Council introduce an ordinance requiring all developed parcels in the Sebastopol Avenue Red Zone be connected to City water.

Councilmember Evans said that she does not dispute that the residences in the subject area need to be hooked up to City water. She questioned, however, why the City should pay for the water main on Emmy Lou Court since the City was not responsible for the contamination. Mr. Brown clarified this area is within the City limits and while the City is not required to do that, it is an appropriate use of CDBG funds.

Councilmember Evans asked whether Council will be able to seek reimbursement of the CDBG funds once the Regional Water Quality Control Board has identified responsible parties. Mr. Brown responded that Council will have the right, as will the County and other parties who put forth funds, to reclaim funds that are expended for this purpose.

In response to City Manager Blackman, Mr. Brown clarified that the Board's funding is just for connections from the main to the property. They will not fund the cost of the main. He also clarified that the two-unit residential property and the two multi-unit properties on West Avenue are exceptions and are not being funded by the County. He reviewed the sources of funding which the County is accessing to pay for the other hook ups.

In response to Councilmember Rabinowitsh, City Manager Blackman explained that the types of financing suggested by Mr. Boyd (Item 10.7) are actually refinancing of the homeowner's mortgages.

In response to Councilmember Vas Dupre, Mr. Brown briefly noted that the Regional Water Quality Control Board is taking the lead on the investigation to determine responsible parties.

Jack Osborne stated his objection to forced connection to the City water supply without a demonstration that a well is contaminated. He pointed out that when connection is forced, a monthly payment to the City is also forced.

Sherry McGary asked Council not to pass the ordinance and questioned how the County can pass an ordinance requiring citizens to pay for clean water. She expressed concern regarding the enforcement sections of the ordinance. She said no funding plans have been approved by the State Water Quality Control Board or the Councilmembers. She referred to the State Water Quality Control Board meeting of July 22 at which time the issue of funding for Emmy Lou Court was raised. The Board decided to address this issue at their September meeting, however, this issue is not on their agenda in September. She discussed concerns she has related to the timing of the approval of the agreement. She suggested that funding opportunities should be more definitive before the ordinance is passed, noting that financial aspects are not discussed in the ordinance. She discussed the financial burdens that would be created for the residents in the Roseland area and again asked Council not to pass the ordinance.

Hans Herb discussed in detail the history of what has occurred related to contamination in the subject area from 1982 until 1998. He expressed concerns related to the lack of public input in this process, the lack of coordination with any of the other agencies in negotiating the proposed agreement (EPA, State Water Resources Control Board, etc.), the potential lack of enforcement, the long delays which will result, and lack of requirements related to clean-up.

Duane DeWitt, Roseland resident, said he would be speaking on behalf of Cynthia Abrao who lives on Hughes Avenue in the unincorporated area. He discussed his membership in the Citizens Cleanup Coalition since its inception and said he has attended numerous meetings and discussions related to this matter. He said he has asked for specific information regarding contaminated wells, but no specific evidence has been brought forward as to who is drinking contaminated water. He referred to documents from Ms. Abrao which point out that in 1992 no contamination was shown as being present at the time of sampling on April 4, 1992. It was again shown by preliminary results in January 1999 that no hydrocarbons known to be in the ground water in her area were present in her well. He expressed concern that Ms. Abrao and other people on fixed-, low-incomes are being forced to abide by these ordinances when their wells are not contaminated. He also expressed concern about the lack of knowledge related to the appeal process for this matter. He asked Council to delay acting on this matter until documentation is brought forth showing where the contamination is.

Mr. Brown responded to some of the previous questions. He explained that the concept behind the Red Zone is an agreement between the County Health Department/Environmental Health and the Regional Water Quality Control Board that wells on properties within the Red Zone are likely to be contaminated at some time during the year. The ground water rises and lowers with the seasons and it is difficult to track the contamination from one sampling time to another. However, there are enough plumes involved in this area that those two agencies have agreed there is a likelihood within the boundaries of the Red Zone that there is a likelihood of some contamination sometime during the year.

City Attorney Chouteau added that the ordinance provides for an administrative appeal which allows property owners to demonstrate that their wells are not contaminated. He explained that the actual appeal procedure will be developed after the ordinance has been adopted. He clarified that if a mandatory hook-up ordinance is not adopted, it would be within the discretion of the property owner as to whether to hook up to City water.

Mr. Brown responded to Council's questions. He said extensive records on any specific property are not available. Broad scale testings were done several years apart. He was unable to estimate the actual clean-up costs for the entire Red Zone area, although it would exceed $1 million.

Vice Mayor Martini said that the issue being addressed is not clean-up, but rather the need for a reliable, potable, safe source of water. He explained why he thinks it is appropriate to use CDBG money for this purpose and why he is concerned that the Council will be held accountable for providing the residents in the subject area with access to that safe source of water. He said he will error on the side of a safe water system and suggested that this is the time to start taking action on this matter.

Councilmember Runyan said that he, Vice Mayor Martini, and then Councilmember Wiggins met for at least two years on a Roseland subcommittee along with representatives from the Board of Supervisors and Southwest Santa Rosa residents. During several of those meetings a number of residents came forward and were passionate about the Council doing something about the water in that area. He reiterated some of Vice Mayor Martini's comments and expressed concern about the future ramifications of not taking action. He concurred with an earlier comment that water is more expensive for those residents who live outside of the City, but pointed out that non-potable well water can be used for yard irrigation as long as the plumbing is reworked so that there is a definite separation between the water entering the house and water being used for irrigation. He suggested it is appropriate to move forward with the ordinance at this time.

In response to Councilmember Runyan, Mr. Brown explained that the two-unit property on West Avenue would be eligible for the Regional Water Quality Control Board's grant funding.

Councilmember Evans said she shares the concerns about ensuring that the residents in the Red Zone have access to safe, clean water and that this must be the high priority. However, there is a need not to further victimize these residents. She expressed concern about the exercise of police power to enforce as it is stated in the ordinance. She also expressed concern about the vagueness of the provision related to an administrative appeal. She was most concerned about the funding and said that the victims should not have to pay for this hook up. She referenced a section in the agreement which clearly states that the County will pay for providing alternative water supplies, including connection to Santa Rosa's municipal water supply system or any equivalent alternative at no additional capital cost. She asked for assurance that this will be in place before the Council mandates the connections. She added that the Draft Abatement Order states that Sonoma County is a responsible party.

Councilmember Evans said the other concern she has about the action before Council is that the question of clean-up will come back to Council because the City is set to take over this Sanitation District in 2000 or 2001. The report on the extent of the contamination will not even be available until the year 2002. She said she has grave concerns about the action before Council under these circumstances. She asked for information about the City's liability and obligation regarding the clean-up of the subject area once it takes over the Sanitation District.

City Attorney Chouteau said the City does not have a final answer to this question at this time. It will depend on the Regional Water Quality Control's Board's position. They have pursued the County in this matter. The County disputes its liability and the order entered by the Regional Water Quality Control Board recognizes that that dispute was not resolved. He confirmed that the City and County entered into negotiations concerning the City's take-over of that Sanitation District before it was discovered what the source of the contamination was. City Manager Blackman indicated that staff can meet with Regional Water Quality Control Board and County staff and provide Council with more information as to the extent of the City's responsibility before it takes on the obligation of the District.

City Attorney Chouteau clarified his earlier comments regarding the appeal process and pointed out that the administrative appeal would be made to the City Health Officer (i.e., County Health Officer contracted by the City). There could then be an appeal to the City Council.

Councilmember Evans said she is still concerned about funding as well as whether it is appropriate to use police powers to enforce the ordinance.

Councilmember Rabinowitsh said the long-term issues and costs to the City related to the taking over of the South Park Sanitation District are significant. He discussed the need to continue working on the long-term clean-up of the area. He said the health concerns are most important to consider and that there are enough risks worth taking the precautions to avoid them. He said he hopes the appeal process is explained thoroughly and that residents are made aware of the steps they can take if they believe their wells are not contaminated. He said while it makes sense to provide safe water, people should not be compelled to hook up if their wells are not contaminated.

In response to Councilmember Evans, City Attorney Chouteau explained that if it is found that County funding is not available for a given property, the matter would be brought back to the Council for further direction. Councilmember Evans referred to Page 3, Item 3., in the Plan of Action and suggested that this language could be incorporated into the ordinance to ensure that hook-ups are made at no cost to the owners or tenants of the parcels. City Attorney Chouteau confirmed that language to this effect could be added to the ordinance.

There was a brief discussion regarding the punitive aspect of the ordinance. City Attorney Chouteau explained that the standard way of enforcing all ordinances is through the police power. This statement does not mean the Police Department enforces the ordinance, but rather that the police power is the general enforcement power of the City.

In response to Councilmember Runyan, City Manager Blackman explained that at the time the agreement was developed related to the City's take-over of the South Park Sanitation District, the responsibility for the toxic problem was not generally known. Since then, when the Water Quality Control Board came out with the position that the County's leaking sewer lines were transmitting some of the toxic pollutants, the responsibility was shifted to the County. The agreement was entered into prior to that time and it contains a date certain. He concurred that this question should be answered prior to the City taking over the system.

MOVED by Vice Mayor Martini, seconded by Councilmember Wright, TO INTRODUCE AND WAIVE THE READING OF THE TEXT OF THE FOLLOWING ORDINANCE WITH AN AMENDMENT INCORPORATING INTO THE FINDINGS AN ITEM E TO THE EFFECT THAT THE COMMITMENT MADE BY THE COUNTY IN THEIR AGREEMENT WITH THE REGIONAL WATER QUALITY CONTROL BOARD THAT SUCH CONNECTION SHALL BE PROVIDED AT NO ADDITIONAL CAPITAL COST TO THE OWNERS OR TENANTS OF THE PARCELS.

Councilmember Evans indicated that she will vote in favor of the ordinance, but said she still has concerns related to the lack of public process in this issue. She explained why she thinks the use of the police power differs in this instance. However, with the exceptions, exemptions and the statement encouraging voluntary compliance, she thinks this will be taken care of.

THE MOTION CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY TO INTRODUCE:

AN ORDINANCE ENTITLED: ORDINANCE OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SANTA ROSA AMENDING CHAPTER 14-2, ENTITLED "WELLS," OF THE SANTA ROSA CITY CODE TO ADD ARTICLE 2 (Item 8.3).

8.4 APPEAL - MOBILEHOME PARK POLICY BOARD'S DECISION RE RINCON VALLEY'S RENT INCREASE ALLOWED UNDER RENT CONTROL/FAIR RATE OF RETURN

Judi Lynch, Housing Programs Specialist, made the staff presentation. The owner of Rincon Valley Mobilehome Estates applied to the Mobilehome Park Policy Board (MHPPB) for a rent increase of $61.19 based upon the Fair Rate of Return provision of rent control (Chapter 6-66.065). An Arbitrator determined that the Park was eligible for a $13.65 increase. The MHPPB made the final decision allowing $9.44 per month after making adjustments to the expense items in the application. Of the 230 spaces in the Park, 82 spaces are subject to this increase.

The homeowners under rent control in the park have filed an appeal asking the Council to void the MHPPB's decision and commence to rewrite rent control regulations into "concepts originally proposed when the law was enacted."

Ms. Lynch referenced background information as to why the decision was made by Council to include a provision for Fair Rate of Return increases for park owners, why Rincon Valley Mobilehome Estates submitted a Fair Rate of Return Application and why the MHPPB made adjustments to the application to arrive at an approved rent increase.

Ms. Lynch noted documents distributed to Council at this meeting from MHPPB member Hugh Futrell, Mr. Dake (Homeowners Representative), and Mr. Moser (the park's General Manager).

Ms. Lynch explained that it is the right of the park owner to receive a fair return on his investment. Council felt it must implement a fair return outlet under rent control and did so a few years ago. This was partly because of a court decision in which the judge said every dollar invested in a property by the landlord by way of capital improvements constitutes an investment in the property for which a fair and reasonable return must be allowed; i.e., the law must provide for a profit on one's investment. Ms. Lynch said that this was the type of decision, along with others, which made the City vulnerable to legal challenges if a fair return was not included in the rental control provisions.

Ms. Lynch indicated that MHPPB Chairperson Charles Evans and Member Hugh Futrell are present to answer questions.

Ms. Lynch then discussed various aspects of the Fair Rate of Return application that was filed for an increase in the amount of $61.19 per month. The Application was filed using the maintenance of net operating income (MNOI) method which is suggested by the MHPPB's policy. She briefly explained the MNOI method. She said that the entire amount of street repaving expense was included as part of the calculation (approximately $137,000) as a maintenance expense in 1998. She said the park owner stated that he had no other recourse after the capital pass through for $6.44 for the street expense was denied by the City Council. Regardless of the capital pass through issue, the park owner under the Fair Rate of Return Procedure would still be eligible for an increase, albeit somewhat smaller.

Ms. Lynch discussed the hiring of an experienced Arbitrator, Larry Curfman, as part of the procedure for this application. Mr. Curfman's impartial decision was provided to the MHPPB for consideration. He determined the park owner was entitled to an increase of $13.65 per month. However, the MHPPB considered the matter, using the same information which was in the record and which was provided to the Arbitrator, and gave serious consideration to the one-time large expense included in the park's operating costs. The MHPPB then, following deliberation, adjusted the increase by allowing only 1/15 of the street repaving costs and 1/5 of the Fair Rate of Return application cost and reduced the allowable increase to $9.44 per month.

Ms. Lynch reviewed the various aspects of the appeal submitted by the homeowners. The homeowners are asking Council to void the MHPPB's action. They are concerned with the pyramiding costs, which the MHPPB paid attention to by reducing the amount of the increase. Further, in November the MHPPB will be reviewing the Fair Rate of Return Procedure used for this application and will make some clarifying adjustments and revisions to them. Ms. Lynch said the homeowners are also asking Council to commence a procedure to form a new Blue Ribbon Committee and rewrite the Rent Control Ordinance.

Ms. Lynch referenced Mr. Futrell's memorandum in which he states that there is no ordinance which would be simple to administer or would guarantee justice to all parties affected by it. Mr. Futrell's memorandum also reminds Council of the hours spent by the Blue Ribbon Committee in developing the Rent Control Ordinance adopted by Council in 1993. Ms. Lynch said that Mr. Futrell led the Blue Ribbon Committee and he does not think another Blue Ribbon Committee is warranted, but rather that modifications could be made to the Fair Rate of Return procedure to gain clarity in the intent of the policy. A thorough discussion of this procedure will be held at the MHPPB meeting in November.

It is recommended by the Department of Housing and Redevelopment that the City Council, by resolution, support the Board's decision to allow a monthly rent increase of $9.44 for Rincon Valley Mobilehome Estates and consider any recommended changes to rent control submitted by the Board.

Ms. Lynch responded to Council questions. She explained that the 1/15 of the street repaving expense is to apply to the operation costs in the current application. There is no further collection of that cost in another area. She said the next MHPPB has been scheduled for November 22, at which time the procedures will be discussed. She confirmed that the $9.44 is a permanent rent increase. If the park owner fails to maintain the street and yet requests another increase in the future, the MHPPB would take that issue into consideration. She explained that there is a line item for maintenance costs in the application. Because the park owner was told that the repaving costs were maintenance, he included those costs in the maintenance line item. The arbitrator considered that figure and made an adjustment to it.

Doug Hobson, Board Member of the Santa Rosa Mobilehome Owners Association, expressed concern about the placement of the MHPPB under the jurisdiction of the Housing Authority. He said that the MHPPB, at their meeting of July 26, not only reversed the Council's decision, but also violated the Rent Control Ordinance. They did this by using a method of determining the net operating income of the park not specified in the ordinance. The only method the ordinance specifies is a net return on investment. In addition, the arbitrator allowed the Rincon Park management to perform no maintenance on the street for a period of years and then charge all of the road repair expenses into one year. He said this expense should have been prorated over the years. He said if the MHPPB decision stands, it will set a precedent that will allow other park owners in the City to do the same thing. It will also allow the park owner to receive profits beyond those specified in the Rent Control Ordinance. He said the data provided by the park manager to the MHPPB indicates a before-tax profit of more than 50%. He urged Council to reverse the MHPPB's decision.

Pat Hobson said she was a member of the Blue Ribbon Committee and participated in all committee meetings and Rent Review Board meetings. She said that when the issue of Fair Rate of Return was discussed, she and other committee members were insistent that park owners bear the costs of arbitration. She said that section of the ordinance is made null by allowing a park owner to pass through the costs to the homeowner. She cited Section 1284.2 of the California Code of Civil Procedures regarding arbitration expenses and attorney and witness fees, and expressed concern that Mr. Moser has included an attorney fee for an action HCA Management Company brought against the District Attorney.

Ms. Hobson also questioned the $7,600 which the Housing Authority is billing for staff time and which is now being passed through to homeowners, particularly since there were funds in the Housing Authority reserves which could cover these costs. She referenced the ten public policy goals related to rent control in mobilehome parks which were listed by the Blue Ribbon Committee and said none of these goals have been reached in the current situation. She asked Council to uphold the appeal. Ms. Hobson's statement is on file in the City Clerk's office.

Norman Dake said the issue before Council today is the operating expenses under the Fair Return Procedure. He referenced subsection 2(C) of the procedure and reviewed Item (5), noting that "normal" is not defined in the procedure. He said it has been established and is part of the record that in 1995, 1996, and 1997 Rincon Valley Mobile Estates averaged $21,468 in maintenance expenses. In 1998, that amount jumped to $69,918. He stated that $69,918 is not a "normal" amount.

Mr. Dake displayed a copy of the definition of operating expenses from the "Fair Return Procedure." He also displayed a copy of Form 2, which specifies how to apply for an increase. He referred to Item 14 of Mr. Moser's Application, which fails to indicate "normal" building and ground maintenance figure. He explained how this part of the application should have been completed and said the form contains an ambiguity. He said Mr. Moser took advantage of the procedure's ambiguity. He explained why he believes the key to this issue is defining "normal" expense. He further explained that the park owner will receive an undeserved increase of $36,000 yearly if Council denies the appeal. He explained how he arrived at this amount. He said that Council must realize when they give a basic rent increase that it will continue endlessly and that a CPI increase can also be added by a park owner. He asked Council to consider the issue of maintenance vs. fees and to act in favor of the homeowners in this matter rather than the park owner who receives a 57% profit.

Dean Moser, representing Rincon Valley Mobilehome Park, explained why the reference by Mr. Dake and in the numerous cards from mobilehome owners to a 57% profit is erroneous and why the actual return is only 2.8%. He referred to the MHPPB's decision and explained in detail why he believes that decision contains three errors that should be corrected. All of the repair and maintenance expenses with the exception of the street work should be allowed. The $69,918 was reduced to a 6% level, thereby deleting $8,900 which should be restored to the expenses. He explained how he was able to show that the actual figures included on the application were within the industry norms. He referred to the street work ($137,000) and said that expense was included in the MNOI calculation because the work was considered as a normal repair and not as a capital improvement. The arbitrator made an adjustment to that amount. Mr. Moser explained why he disagrees with that adjustment, pointing out that the amount was not unreasonable and said that there should be some type of return for that amount (i.e., the 1/15 amount set by the arbitrator plus a 10% return over a period of time).

Mr. Moser said he has been attempting to resolve this matter since June 1998. He expressed concern about this process, including the $31,000 processing costs to date. He stated that he provided Mr. Dake and his CPA with all of the financial information. He pointed out that this issue has been before the arbitrator, an independent attorney, and the MHPPB. He expressed his hope that Council will, at a minimum, uphold the decision of the MHPPB and make some of the adjustments which he has requested.

In response to Vice Mayor Martini, Mr. Moser said that the percentage to which he referred earlier (2.8%) is a percentage of the gross income.

Don Russell referred to the background information on the agenda, which indicates that 82 spaces are subject to the proposed increase. He referred to a previous Council discussion at which time a statement was made that equity must be maintained in the charges which result from this case. He expressed concern that, in light of that statement, only 82 of the 230 spaces will be faced with this increase. He stated that the closure for this situation should be legal, honorable, and fair.

Gwen Foster expressed concern that new residents, bringing in new mobilehomes, are being given six months of free rent and $500 for landscaping although the current owners did not receive similar benefits. She explained why she thinks raising rents by percentages is an unfair way to raise rent. She thinks everyone should pay the same amount. She pointed out that she is paying considerably higher rent than other tenants because her house was sold three times before she purchased it and the rent was raised each time it was sold. She said that tenants who have been in the park for twenty years pay much lower rent than she does (she's been a tenant for five years).

In response to Vice Mayor Martini, MHPPB Chairperson Evans said it is his understanding that if a rent increase request exceeds the norm, it is called into question and may possibly be reduced. If it falls below the norm, the arbitrator does not increase it.

MHPPB Member Hugh Futrell said the ordinance says that if a cost, an operating expense line item, exceeds the industry norm, the park owner has the burden to demonstrate that it is reasonable. However, that does not mean that just because a particular expense is lower than the maximum or than the average of the industry norms, that necessarily makes it a reasonable and necessary expense. That is appropriate for investigation by an arbitrator. In this case, to some extent, the record of the arbitrator reflects that evaluation and discussion. Industry norm ranges play a role on what type of evidence must be brought forward, but they do not necessarily tie the hands of the arbitrator or the MHPPB, or necessarily the Council on appeal.

Member Futrell referred to the issue of whether MNOI is an appropriate method of determining Fair Return. He pointed out that the ordinance empowers the MHPPB to create regulations to implement the ordinance provisions. Those regulations were adopted following review by a committee comprised of park owners and park residents, and whose recommendations were reviewed by the City Attorney. Those regulations/procedures were thoroughly reviewed before they were adopted by the MHPPB. Member Futrell said he believes the MNOI method is an appropriate basis by which to determine a Fair Rate of Return. The other approaches are extraordinarily complex and would not really lead to lower rents.

Member Futrell referred to the issue of legal fees and said he is concerned that they are incurred with a dispute not yet fully adjudicated. He said his position reflected a presumption that that dispute had been dealt with and that no court or other competent jurisdiction found any wrong-doing by the park owner. If that is not the case and it is still an open issue, it is arguable that legal fees incurred by the park owner could be reasonably disallowed under the grounds that those were not reasonable expenditures. If counsel so advises, it could be reasonable to take the position that the portion of operating expenses related to those fees could be stayed pending a determination by the court. He suggested Council may wish to take that into consideration.

Member Futrell said it is possible that the 1998 maintenance expenses (not the paving expenses) are uniquely higher than they would be in subsequent years. He said he does not concur with the need to average expenses. However, it is true that if the $69,000 plus have one-time costs included, which will not immediately recur, this creates an artificial increase in operating expenses and an artificial reduction in net operating revenues, and--therefore--an artificially high increase. He pointed out that the problem is the regulations and that the MHPPB can only take up what is in the record. He noted the information received by the arbitrator, but pointed out that the record did not include a breakdown sufficient to allow the MHPPB to evaluate whether one-time expenses were included in the $69,000. In that respect, the language of the regulations tied the hands of the MHPPB. He said that error must be corrected when the ordinance and regulations are changed.

Mr. Futrell referred to the issue of the application and fees and said that if the park owner is entitled to a rent increase, it is difficult to take the position that the fees they expended in order to obtain that increase should not be included in the operating expenses.

Member Futrell said that he will be recommending changes to the ordinance which he believes are appropriate.

Member Futrell responded to Council questions. He explained that no figures were withheld, but that to do an analysis of operating expenses for 1998 would have required that the general ledger was part of the record. It was not part of the record because it was not requested by the arbitrator, required by the application, and the counsel for the park residents did not request that it be inserted into the record. He clarified that the MHPPB has a right to use whatever record was in front of the arbitrator in making their decision. He said that he is not aware of anything in the record that would indicate the net operating income vs. the gross income is an inappropriate ratio. However, the individual expenses which were scrutinized make up those operating expenses and they fell within the industry norms. Therefore, the total ratios were probably within the industry norms. The MHPPB did not discuss that matter.

Member Futrell said that he made the motion which is before Council. However, he noted that there may be alternatives available for Council action. In dealing with the legal costs, the MHPPB was not aware at that time that the matter had not been adjudicated. Had they had that information, it is possible the MHPPB would have taken a different approach on legal fees. He said, in addition, that he is uncomfortable with the fact that the maintenance expenses may be artificially high for the 1998 year which the MHPPB reviewed. The MHPPB had no basis on which to challenge those expenses. Future regulations must provide the MHPPB with that basis. He said such regulations could, in theory, provide the MHPPB with the basis to come back to this Park on this issue and reevaluate whether rents should be reduced if, in fact, there were one-time expenses that were included.

Member Futrell explained why he does not think the process will not be improved and that this situation is not a process issue. What is of issue are specific changes to the ordinance that would be appropriate.

Chairperson Evans said that the discussion about gross profit (i.e., gross income minus operating expenses) is only one component of the Rate of Return. It must be weighed against the investment in the park. He explained why he believes the original decision of the MHPPB related to the paving expenses was the best decision; i.e., that it was a capital expense and had a 15-year life which equated to a rent increase of approximately $6. However, Council took the matter up on appeal and disagreed with the MHPPB's interpretation. Rather, they said the expense was for maintenance. The park owner, as a result, applied for the rent increase. The arbitrator recognized that the costs should have been spread over a period of time and thus reduced it to 1/15. However, in considering other aspects of the application, the MHPPB came to its current position.

Vice Mayor Martini discussed his concerns regarding using base year numbers that are artificially low, particularly when used in a year when there are artificially high expenses. Member Futrell said it is true that as parks age, the ratio of maintenance expenses as a total gross income will increase. Therefore, it is necessary to be cautious about looking back a number of years. However, when a large increase was seen in 1998, it raises the question of why. If that increase includes one-time expenses that will not recur because of certain deferred maintenance, or other items during that period of time, there will be an artificially high rent increase. The problem is the MHPPB did not have access to the records to be able to do that type of analysis. Member Futrell said it would take a change in the regulations in order to obtain and analyze that type of information.

Larry Curfman, Arbitrator, responded to Council questions. He reiterated earlier comments that he took into consideration the extraordinary expense related to maintenance and felt it was appropriate to spread it over 15 years because it obviously was not a normal item. As far as the remaining item related to repair and maintenance, even though the amount was definitely above the park's average, he felt there was a distinction between what was average and what was normal. He said that for purposes of deductibility under the Internal Revenue Code, the costs for street repair were capital expenses. For the purpose of the issue before Council, the words were different and it seemed to him that the decision the Council made was appropriate. However, it caused the park owner's dilemma as to how to recover the costs. The most reasonable and just approach, therefore, seemed to be to only allow 1/15 of that item to be included in the calculation. He confirmed that he took into consideration the operating expenses for the three years prior to 1998.

City Attorney Chouteau responded to Council's questions. He explained that it is important to consider that the City has established rules as to how these procedures are to be implemented. Those rules were followed. The arbitrator carefully followed the rules and it was the arbitrator's considered judgment that an increase of $13.65 was appropriate. He said the MHPPB is free to consider its procedures for future hearings. However, it is not due process to change the rules at this point and have the park owner start over. This would not comport with case law and would be inappropriate for the Council. The MHPPB has reduced the arbitrator's award for specific reasons. This is staff's recommendation and the matter which is before Council. It would not be appropriate to modify the rent increase awarded under the existing ordinance if the MHPPB reviews and makes modifications that would give them the ability to analyze one-time costs unless another application is made for the subject park.

City Attorney Chouteau said he does not believe there is a basis for delaying action on the legal fees at this time. Those are the fees incurred by the park during a given year. They are not part of the arbitrator's decision.

Vice Mayor Martini discussed his concerns about the process and said there is a need, in the future, to pursue Member Futrell's recommendation's related to the ordnance. He urged Council to consider having the MHPPB examine how the portion of the ordinance related to this matter proceeds. He expressed concern related to the appeal in that Council's hands are tied. The ordinance has been followed and Council does not have a great deal of choice. He does not think the process reflects its intent; i.e., providing a reasonable rate of return on expenditures. Rather, the park owner is being made whole against a base year chosen by the Council. He said that one-time expenditures are critical to how the process works.

Councilmember Runyan explained why he thinks supporting the action of the MHPPB is appropriate given the existing process. He said he is concerned that the formulas are confusing and may not be workable. While he will support the MHPPB's decision, he hopes it won't take until the end of year for the MHPPB to review the ordinance and return to Council with something that is more comprehensible.

Councilmember Rabinowitsh discussed his concerns related to the ambiguity and complexity of this issue. He expressed his sympathy for the people affected by it. He said there is a need for clear guidelines and an understanding as to how to account for various expenses as well as to clarify the assumptions. He said that because of the legal and procedural constraints, he feels led to support the staff's recommendation.

Councilmember Wright concurred. She said that the rules can't be changed in order to make them retroactive. Therefore, Council does not appear to have any other recourse but to support the MHPPB's recommendation. She will deny the appeal.

Councilmember Vas Dupre concurred. She noted the amount of time that has been put into this matter by residents and particularly by members of Boards and Commission who receive no compensation. She said she is looking forward to new language that will bring this type of issue to a less contentious place.

Vice Mayor Martini asked if the ordinance could be modified so as to enable the Council to return every two years and review it and modify rents accordingly based on the numbers for that year. City Attorney Chouteau indicated that he would like to analyze this suggestion in the context of the changes made to the ordinance and the MHPPB's procedure before he provides a final answer.

Vice Mayor Martini said the issue that is difficult for him is that a permanent rent increase is based on one "snapshot" in time. If there was a high level of confidence that the park owner would invest $70,000 a year on maintenance projects and improve the living environment, a $6 per month rent increase may be justified. If Council was able to incorporate language into the ordinance enabling the MHPPB to take another "snapshot" at another time, a better level of equity would be reached and there would be a reasonable expectation on the part of the residents that they would get what they are paying for. This may provide for a process for residents to come forward if they do not think they are getting returns for what they are paying and to ask for a roll-back in rents.

Mayor Condron said she supports the MHPPB's decision, as well as Vice Mayor Martini's recommendation to consider language that would provide a recourse. She said the maintenance break-down needs to be included.

There was a brief discussion regarding costs for staff time. City Attorney Chouteau said this is a matter to be considered by the MHPPB and City Council. It may make sense to have those funds taken out of the administrative fee. However, in this case Mr. Moser was billed for staff time and paid the bill. That is the way the system is currently structured. Councilmember Wright suggested that this issue should be considered by the MHPPB along with the other suggestions.

MOVED by Councilmember Runyan, seconded by Councilmember Wright, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY TO ADOPT AND WAIVE THE READING OF THE TEXT OF:

RESOLUTION NO. 24120 ENTITLED: RESOLUTION OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SANTA ROSA DENYING THE APPEAL FROM RINCON VALLEY MOBILEHOME ESTATES HOMEOWNERS UNDER RENT CONTROL TO VOID THE MOBILEHOME PARK POLICY BOARD'S DECISION TO ALLOW A $9.44 RENT INCREASE FOR SPACES UNDER RENT CONTROL (Item 8.4).

MOVED by Vice Mayor Martini, seconded by Councilmember Wright, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY TO DIRECT THE MHPPB TO REVIEW THIS DISCUSSION AND RETURN TO COUNCIL WITH RECOMMENDED CHANGES TO THE FAIR RATE OF RETURN PROCESS.

8.5 APPEAL - MOBILEHOME PARK POLICY BOARD'S DECISION TO TABLE A REQUEST FOR ADDITIONAL LANGUAGE TO THE RENT CONTROL PROVISION RELATED TO PUBLIC UTILITY COMMISSION REGULATIONS

Judi Lynch, Housing Programs Specialist, made the staff presentation. On July 26, 1999, the Mobilehome Park Policy Board (MHPPB) heard a request by the Santa Rosa Mobile Homeowners Association to add language to the City's rent control provisions that would prohibit mobilehome park owners from passing through costs related to the utility system. The park owner is responsible for the utility system within park boundaries, and the PUC provides funding each month to be held by the park to maintain utility services. The PUC has regulations in place that prevent a pass through of utility expenditures to homeowners and the City's rent control provisions allow charges to the homeowner if "...not otherwise prohibited by law..." Since one park owner did attempt to pass through charges that were in violation of PUC regulations, the Homeowners Association would like specific reference within the City Code to the PUC rules to create more awareness of them which may alleviate future violations.

The MHPPB discussed this issue and believed that it warranted further consideration. It was a unanimous vote to table this issue until the MHPPB took up other rent control modifications at a date uncertain. Since that time, the MHPPB has set November 22, 1999, as the date on which they will discuss this issue.

It is recommended by the Department of Housing and Redevelopment that the City Council, by resolution, uphold the MHPPB's decision to table the discussion of this request until a later date and deny the appeal.

Pat Hobson said she represents the Santa Rosa Mobilehome Owners Association who appealed this matter. She said they have been asking for a hearing on the subject matter since April and expressed concern that it has taken eight months to set that meeting. She reviewed the text of the PUC Code (739.6) pertaining to this matter and pointed out that most people do not have knowledge of laws governing mobile homes. As a result, her association does not believe the language in the City's Rent Control Ordinance (City Code Section 6-66-050) is sufficient. She cited several cases which demonstrate the need for the inclusion of the PUC provision in the ordinance. Ms. Hobson's statement is on file in the City Clerk's office.

Jack Osborne suggested that Council should change the Rent Control Ordinance by adding the words, "subject to all PUC regulations." He then referred to the previous discussion, pointing out that financial and operating statements must always be reviewed to determine liability.

Dean Moser, representing Rincon Valley Mobilehome Estates, pointed out that there are numerous laws in place and to include this particular one in the Rent Control Ordinance, without including all of the others, doesn't make sense. He supported sending this matter back to the MHPPB for thorough consideration.

Mayor Condron reiterated that November 22 has been set by the MHPPB for review of this matter. She confirmed that the only issue in the appeal was related to that date.

MOVED by Councilmember Evans, seconded by Councilmember Runyan, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY, TO ADOPT AND WAIVE THE READING OF THE TEXT OF:

RESOLUTION NO. 24121 ENTITLED: RESOLUTION OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SANTA ROSA DENYING THE APPEAL FROM THE SANTA ROSA MOBILEHOME OWNERS ASSOCIATION (SRMOA) TO ADD LANGUAGE TO THE MOBILEHOME RENT CONTROL PROVISION THAT PROHIBITS A PARK OWNER FROM PASSING THROUGH COSTS FOR THE UTILITY SYSTEM EQUIPMENT (Item 8.5).

Council recessed from 8:05 until 8:15 p.m. and reconvened with all members present.

8.6 PUBLIC HEARING - RECLASSIFICATION - COURTSIDE VILLAGE - LIVE/WORK UNITS

Mark Wolfe, City Planner, made the staff presentation. Mr. Wolfe displayed a location map and discussed the existing and surrounding zoning. On July 22, 1999, the Planning Commission voted 5-0 to recommend that the City Council approve various amendments to the Courtside Village Policy Statement.

Courtside Village is a mixed use planned community of approximately 68 acres in Southwest Santa Rosa. The project includes residential, commercial, public, and recreational uses. The applicant is proposing a revision to the Zoning Policy Statement in order to allow live/work units on 29 approved lots along Sebastopol Road. At present, the District allows either single- or multi-family units on these lots, all of which would back onto Sebastopol Road. The changes to the District would expand the allowable uses to include a range of commercial and personal service activities combined with residential on these lots and would orient the units to Sebastopol Road in place of the typical back-on treatment. Several other minor changes to the Conditional Use Permit for the project, aimed at clarifying the existing regulations, have been approved by the Planning Commission contingent upon the rezoning. The project has been favorably considered by the Design Review Board and staff has not identified any major issues with the proposal.

It is recommended by the Planning Commission and the Department of Community Development that the City Council introduce an ordinance finding the project to be within the scope of the Southwest EIR and approve the proposed Planned Community Zoning Policy Statement revisions.

In response to Councilmember Runyan as to why Lots 18 and 19 are not included in this application, Mr. Wolfe explained that the owner of that property, Mr. Wescott, was not a party to the rezoning application. As a result, tonight's action will not affect those lots or any of Mr. Wescott's property.

Mayor Condron opened the public hearing.

Alan Cohen referred to a location map and discussed the history of the project. He said that financing and builders have been now found for these live/work units. He discussed some of the characteristics of the proposed project that will enhance the area along Sebastopol Road and slow traffic.

Barry Meyer, Attorney representing Robert Wescott, explained that the applicant does not own or have the right to acquire all of the property in the subject development. He said the application is an attempt to piecemeal the development, which will not cure the large gap in curbs, gutters, sidewalks, and access on Sebastopol Road. He recommended that Council delay action on this application at this time.

Alan Strachan briefly discussed what has occurred since 1994-95. It was his intent to do full improvements on Sebastopol Road and he offered to pay for the improvements in front of the Wescott property in exchange for dedication of the right-of-way. However, the owner refused to do that despite repeated attempts on his and the City's part. Therefore, the improvements cannot be made without the City exercising eminent domain.

Hearing no further comments, Mayor Condron closed the public hearing.

Councilmember Wright asked whether it would be appropriate for the City to proceed with eminent domain proceedings in order to complete the improvements in the subject area. City Attorney Chouteau confirmed that the City has the power of eminent domain. There is a procedure for reaching an agreement such that the City could be reimbursed by the developer for exercising that power. Following a brief discussion, Council requested an informational report from the Department of Community Development related to this possibility so that Council can determine whether to explore this matter further.

MOVED by Councilmember Rabinowitsh, seconded by Councilmember Wright, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY TO INTRODUCE AND WAIVE THE READING OF THE TEXT OF:

AN ORDINANCE ENTITLED: ORDINANCE OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SANTA ROSA AMENDING CHAPTER 20 OF THE SANTA ROSA CITY CODE - RECLASSIFICATION OF PROPERTY LOCATED AT 3950 SEBASTOPOL ROAD (COURTSIDE VILLAGE) - FILE NUMBER MNP98-055 (Item 8.6).

8.7 PUBLIC HEARING - NESR 1-99 ANNEXATION AND PREZONING

Joel Galbraith, City Planner, made the staff presentation. He displayed a location map and discussed the surrounding and proposed uses. On July 22, 1999, the Planning Commission approved a request to subdivide a one-acre parcel located at 642 Middle Rincon Road into two single-family residential lots subject to City Council approval of an annexation and prezoning to the RR-20 District.

The project site is located in the Benjamin-Speers County island and is designated on the General Plan as Very Low Density Residential, which allows a maximum density of two dwellings per acre. The proposed prezoning to the RR-20 District is consistent with the General Plan.

On July 22, 1999, the Planning Commission held a public hearing on the project. At the hearing the Department of Community Development recommended approval. No one spoke against the proposal and no letters were received in opposition. The Planning Commission voted 7-0 to approve the Parcel Map subject to annexation and prezoning to the RR-20 District.

It is recommended by the Planning Commission and the Department of Community Development that the City Council, by resolution, adopt a Negative Declaration and introduce an ordinance prezoning 642 Middle Rincon Road to the RR-20 District.

Mayor Condron opened the public hearing.

Denise Peter, Carlile Macy, said they are in complete agreement with the Conditions of Approval.

Hearing no further comments, Mayor Condron closed the public hearing.

Mr. Galbraith responded to questions raised by Councilmember Vas Dupre. He explained that this project will not be allowed to increase drainage onto adjacent properties. This is a condition of every project. Although the applicant has indicated that he will not erect anything other than one-story units, this prezoning would allow two-story units. This issue is not before Council at this time.

MOVED by Vice Mayor Martini, seconded by Councilmember Runyan, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY TO ADOPT AND WAIVE THE READING OF THE TEXT OF:

RESOLUTION NO. 24122 ENTITLED: RESOLUTION OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SANTA ROSA APPROVING AND ADOPTING A NEGATIVE DECLARATION FOR THE CHRISTOPHERSON ANNEXATION NESR 1-99 (642 MIDDLE RINCON ROAD) - FILE NUMBER ANX98-013 (Item 8.7).

MOVED by Vice Mayor Martini, seconded by Councilmember Runyan, CARRIED UNANIMOUSLY TO INTRODUCE AND WAIVE THE READING OF THE TEXT OF:

AN ORDINANCE ENTITLED: ORDINANCE OF THE COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF SANTA ROSA REZONING THE AREA INCLUDED WITHIN THE PROPOSED CHRISTOPHERSON ANNEXATION NESR 1-99 (642 MIDDLE RINCON ROAD) - FILE NUMBER ANX98-013 (Item 8.7).

9. MAYOR'S/COUNCILMEMBERS' REPORTS

9.1 ANNOUNCEMENT OF CLOSE SESSION TOPICS

No Closed Session was held.

Mayor's/Councilmembers' Reports

Councilmember Vas Dupre said there was a meeting of the Sonoma County Child Care Planning Council, which will be followed up by a presentation to this Council. She said the realities' report has just been issued. The title of the realities' report is "Child Care, A Quiet Crisis for Sonoma County." Copies of the report are available in Spanish as well as English. She suggested if people want more information regarding this matter they should contact the City Manager's Office and she will respond. She referred to an article entitled, "A New Kind of Neighborly Interaction: The On-Line Block Party." She said she wants to discuss this issue with the Council at some point in time. She said the Sonoma County Human Services Department has put their information and referral data base on the Internet: www.sonoma-county.org . She discussed the success of the Wednesday Night Market, noting the large number of people who attended the reception for volunteers and others involved with the Market. She acknowledged the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program hosted by the Volunteer Center which was well-attended and which shows the power of volunteerism in the community.

Councilmember Wright reported that she and Councilmember Runyan participated in the first meeting of the Linkages Committee which is administering the $500,000 grant from MTC for the purpose of looking at the market between the Plaza, going into Fourth Street. There is a Steering Committee as well as a Technical Committee which will be meeting. RFPs (Requests for Proposals) for a consultant for design work is being put together. She will keep the Council posted on this matter. She indicated that she will not be at the next Council meeting since she'll be on vacation. She asked that Council keep her comments in mind related to the request for funding for the Santa Parade. The funds which are being requested belong to the Downtown Association in that they paid into an assessment district. She said she is supportive of their request because that type of assessment district was formed for promotional events that would bring people Downtown. She said she hopes Council will support the request when they consider it at the next meeting.

Councilmember Rabinowitsh said the Citizens Academy will begin on September 16. He acknowledged the Department Heads, Assistant City Manager Marc Richardson, and Community Affairs Coordinator Pat Fruiht for their efforts on behalf of this program. Ten sessions will be offered this fall and it will be opened for other residents to attend in the spring. He will provide Council with a copy of the schedule.

Vice Mayor Martini said he and Councilmember Evans have screened the applications for Planning Commissioner. Seven of the nine names will be submitted for interviews. A list of those applicants will be provided to Council. He said there is an opening on the Design Review Board for someone with designer/architect/building inspection experience. One application was received from a person who is a retired architect. Vice Mayor Martini, therefore, recommended that Council interview this individual at the same time as the applicants for the Planning Commission. Mayor Condron said there is a need to delay interviewing for the Design Review Board vacancy until the application deadline has passed. Councilmember Wright noted that Council's policy was modified to give them greater flexibility for filling these types of vacancies.

Vice Mayor Martini acknowledged Senator Chesbro, Lobbyist Kenneth Emanuels, and Assemblywomen Wiggins and Mazzoni for their efforts on behalf of the Park Bond initiative which will be on the ballot in November. The initiative specifically sets aside $2 million for a project in Sonoma County reusing tertiary treated water on land owned by the utility system. He said there is a project which fits this. The voters will now have to approve the bond.

Councilmember Runyan said he was elected Second Vice President for next year at the meeting of the North Bay Division of the League of California Cities last week.

Councilmember Evans said she and her husband attended the Shakespeare in the Park opening night, which was a wonderful performance. More than 800 people saw that production during the three nights it played. She cited recent experiences and potential future development activities in the Downtown, and said given the work being done by City Vision and because there may be a need to create incentives for new Downtown development to occur, she would like Council to consider amendments to Council Policy 000-36, Public Hearing re: Support for Economic Development Policy. Council concurred with placing this policy on a future agenda for consideration.

Mayor Condron said that an all-day conference on urbanism ideas will be held by the Local Association of Architects on October 23 in Santa Rosa. Council will be provided with additional information regarding this conference. She noted that the dedication of Cancer Survivor's Park will be held on October 17 at 2:00 p.m.

10. WRITTEN COMMUNICATIONS (AND POSSIBLE COUNCIL ACTION)

10.1 COMMUNICATION - League of California Cities Legislative Bulletin.

This item was provided for informational purposes only.

10.2 COMMUNICATION - L. Maroni re: Appreciation for Doyle Park Ball Field renamed in memory of Father.

This item was provided for informational purposes only.

10.3 COMMUNICATIONS - Re: Mobile Home Rent Control Ordinance.

This item was provided for informational purposes only.

10.4 COMMUNICATION - W. and S. Clark re: Bus Route 15 on Marlow Road.

This item was provided for informational purposes only.

10.5 COMMUNICATION - A. Ferrario re: Meeting regarding Bus Route 15.

This item was provided for informational purposes only.

10.6 COMMUNICATION - I. Reine re: Downtown Development Concerns.

This item was provided for informational purposes only.

10.7 COMMUNICATION - M. Boyd re: Financing for Water Hookups - Roseland.

This item was provided for informational purposes only.

10.8 COMMUNICATION - R. Bartley re: Council Actions.

This item was provided for informational purposes only.

10.9 COMMUNICATION - M. Bentley re: Opposition to BMX Track.

This item was provided for informational purposes only.

10.10 COMMUNICATION - P. Olson re: Speed Limit on Neotomas Avenue.

This communication will be referred to the City Traffic Engineer for follow up.

10.11 COMMUNICATION - Commission on the Status of Women Annual Report.

This item was provided for informational purposes only.

10.12 COMMUNICATION - Mayors' and Councilmembers' Association of Sonoma County General Membership Meeting.

This item was provided for informational purposes only.

10.13 COMMUNICATION - Board of Community Services re: Caretaker/Sexton at the Santa Rosa Rural Cemetery.

This item was provided for informational purposes only. Councilmember Vas Dupre said that there are some neighbors in the vicinity of the cemetery who are willing to cooperate with the Santa Rosa Police Department.

10.14 COMMUNICATION - D. Fudge re: 12th Annual Russian River Cleanup.

This item was provided for informational purposes only.

10.15 COMMUNICATION - M. Mitock re: Support for SB 335 - Safe Drivers Act.

This item was provided for informational purposes only.

10.16 COMMUNICATION - C. O'Brien re: Lane Changes on Calistoga Road.

This item was provided for informational purposes only.

ADJOURNMENT

Hearing no further business, Mayor Condron adjourned the meeting at 8:55 p.m. to the next regularly scheduled meeting to take place on September 14, 1999, at a time to be set by the Mayor.

9/7/1999