City Manager's Blog - March 19 - March 30, 2018
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- Phone Number408-615-2210
Welcome to the latest edition of the City Manager's Report. You may download this report as a PDF. To view past posts or subscribe to receive these on eNotify, please visit www.santaclaraca.gov/cmblog
Spring Holiday Closure: City Hall administrative offices were closed on March 30, 2018 for the Spring Holiday. Emergency services continue 24 hours a day, 7 days a week during holiday closures. For more info, visit www.santaclaraca.gov/holidayclosures
Silicon Valley Power Fraud Issue: Santa Clara residents have been receiving scam phone calls claiming to alert them about the status of their utility bills, and requesting payment for utility bills or threatening to disconnect power. The callers are "spoofing" actual City phone numbers to make them look legitimate.
THIS IS A SCAM. This scam follows a similar formula: The victim receives a call instilling panic and urgency to make a payment using cash, credit card or gift card. The callers may ask people to make payments over the phone for things such as utility bills, taxes, hospital bills, bail money and debt collection. The caller suggests the purchase of gift cards from the nearest retailer (e.g. Target, convenience store, electronics retailer, Rite Aid, etc.). After the cards have been purchased, the victim is asked to pay by sharing the 16-digit code on the back of the card with the caller over the phone.
If you receive such a call, hang up immediately. If you have been a victim of this or any other scam, file an online report (www.scpd.org) with the Santa Clara Police Department or call the Police Department at (408) 615-4700.
Fatal Traffic Collision: On March 23, 2018 at about 4:46 A.M., a fatal traffic accident occurred on El Camino Real at Alviso Street. The single occupant Toyota Camry was traveling westbound El Camino Real on the wrong side of the road at a high rate of speed. The driver lost control of the vehicle and ran over the center median into the westbound lanes of traffic. The vehicle continued across the four westbound lanes, onto the sidewalk at El Camino Real and Alviso Street, and struck a small retaining wall separating the sidewalk and a motel parking lot. The deceased driver was identified as a 30-year old male resident of the City of Seaside.
Mayors’ Institute of City Design: The Mayors’ Institute on City Design (MICD) is a National Endowment for the Arts leadership initiative, in partnership with the United States Conference of Mayors, that helps transform communities through design by preparing mayors to be the chief urban designers of their cities. Upon Mayor Gillmor’s initiation, the City of Santa Clara was selected to participate this year and Mayor Gillmor will be attending the National Session from April 11 through 13 to advance place making in Santa Clara. Mayor Gillmor and staff recently presented three possible projects to MICD representatives:
- North Santa Clara – a combination of all the approved and proposed projects including City Place, Tasman East Specific Plan, Freedom Circle Specific Plan, and Patrick Henry Specific Plan
- The BART station and adjacent properties
- The Stevens Creek Corridor
After the presentations and tours of all three areas, MICD selected North Santa Clara for its unique combination of size, mix of existing uses, approved projects, and proposed specific plans.
George F. Haines International Swim Center (ISC) Closed for Maintenance April 9-11: The ISC will be closed April 9 through April 11, 2018 for pool maintenance tasks, such as deck repair, diatomaceous earth (DE) filtration replenishment, tile repair and include grand stand cleanup. The repair of the men’s shower area is being addressed as a separate non-maintenance project.
Agnew Park Rehabilitation Project Survey: The City seeks community input on the Agnew Park Playground Rehabilitation Project which includes the playground and an update of the Agnew Park Site Master Plan. In 2017, the City retained Volz Design to conduct public outreach and develop a schematic design that meets the neighborhood needs and research based best practices. Funding is available for the playground, and additional items identified will be addressed when additional funding becomes available in the future. To participate, visit the Open City Hall Survey now through April 5.
Tasman East Specific Plan: The Tasman East Specific Plan represents one of the City's best opportunities to create a distinctive place within Santa Clara by establishing policies to support a walkable high density urban neighborhood that features retail opportunities, distinctive urban gathering spaces, proximity to job centers and access to transit. Following confirmation by City Council at the February 6, 2018 Study Session that the plan should include a total of 10 acres of public and private open spaces, staff is currently preparing the Tasman East Specific Plan and Environmental Impact Report, expected to be available to the public in June. A schedule for the plan is available here: http://santaclaraca.gov/government/departments/community-development/planning-division/specific-plans/tasman-east. A community open house for the plan will be held in late May 2018, and a Council Study Session to receive comments on the draft plan will be scheduled in mid-June.
2330 Monroe Street Affordable Housing Site Community Survey: On December 7, 2017, the City held a Community Engagement Meeting at City Hall to discuss plans for the future development of the City-owned site at 2330 Monroe Street. Approximately 50 community members heard a presentation from City staff and participated in guided workshops covering the following topics: Affordability, Site Layout and Density, Housing Preferences, Amenities.
Feedback was collected through a community survey and results are available online at: https://www.peakdemocracy.com/5789 The Request for Proposals (RFP) for 2330 Monroe Street is now available online. This City-owned parcel is a designated as an Affordable Housing Site. The data collected from the community has been included in the RFP with the plan that interested developers will utilize the community feedback in their proposals.
Coyote Decoys in Central Park: If you have seen coyote decoys in Central Park, the City has started utilizing them for geese abatement. A flock of more than 100 Canadian Geese have adopted Central Park. Unfortunately, the geese are damaging turf and creating hazards with their waste. An adult goose can eat up to four pounds of grass and can create three pounds of fecal matter in a single day. The Coyote decoys will discourage the geese from staying and occasional goose distress calls will be played over loud speakers to keep the flock at bay.
BART Silicon Valley Phase II and Caltrain Electrification Joint Meeting: A joint meeting was held on March 15, 2018 to discuss both the Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) Silicon Valley Phase II Extension and Caltrain Electrification projects. The Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) presented information on the six-mile four-station BART Extension project which would run from the future Northern San Jose Berryessa BART station, continue through downtown San Jose, and ultimately terminate at the Santa Clara Caltrain station. Project construction is expected to begin in 2020 and scheduled to open 2026. The VTA Board will meet on April 5, 2018 to discuss and select rail alignment options for two of the downtown San Jose stations, tunneling construction methodology (single vs. double bore) into downtown San Jose, and certify the environmental document recently completed for the project. For more information on this project, please visit www.vta.org/bart.
Caltrain reported on a project to electrify the 51-mile Caltrain corridor from the 4th and King station in San Francisco to the Tamien station in San Jose. The project will also replace diesel trains with high-performance electric trains, and increase service up to six Caltrain trains per peak hour per direction. Electric train service is scheduled to operate in year 2022, projected to increase daily ridership from 65,000 to 111,000 riders by year 2040. Construction will be phased and broken into four segments. Segment 3, north of the De La Cruz Boulevard overpass, and Segment 4, south of De La Cruz Boulevard overpass, are located within the City of Santa Clara. Construction work currently in progress will continue through 2019 which includes tree pruning, foundation construction, and potholing. Construction work within segment 3 will occur between mid-2018 to 2019 and work within segment 4 started in late last year and will be completed later this year. Future construction work which will run through 2020 to include the installation of the overhead contact system poles and wires. Final system testing will occur from 2020 through 2022. For more info on this project, please visit www.calmod.org.
Santa Clara Fire Community Updates: Girl Scout Khadijah Kamio sets aside enough Girl Scout cookies from her fundraising efforts every year to donate to the Santa Clara Firefighters. This year, 80 boxes of donated cookies were distributed among the three shifts at the 10 Fire Stations! The Firefighters appreciate her very kind gesture. On March 20, Sister City students visiting from Coimbra, Portugal visited with Santa Clara Firefighters and were able to check out modern firefighting equipment.
Mission City Memorial Park at Cabrillo Middle School Career Day: On February 28, Mission City Memorial Park staff represented the City for Career Day at Cabrillo Middle School. They spoke to 90 students about their careers in public service, describing the paths that led them to their current positions. In addition, they shared with students the role of Parks and Recreation Department staff as potential disaster service workers.
Another Sunset Cinema Success: Sunset Cinema featuring “Coco” was held on March 16, 2018, at the Central Library where over 150 participants enjoyed this free, family-friendly movie night. Youth Commissioners sold concessions to raise funds for their activities and scholarships. The next Sunset Cinema is scheduled for May 18, contact the Youth Activity Center at (408) 615-3760 for more information.
California Police Chiefs Association Conference: Chief Sellers, Assistant Chief Winter, Sergeant Fraser, and Sergeant Malae attended the California Police Chiefs Association Conference in Long Beach from March 19 through March 22. In addition to the training and guest speakers, this conference held a memorial to all of the California law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty in 2017. The Santa Clara Police Department will have the honor of being the host agency for this conference at the Santa Clara Convention Center in March 2019.
Chief Sellers attends School Board meeting on School Safety: On March 22, Chief Sellers attended the Santa Clara Unified School District Board Meeting to discuss school safety. He discussed the training and other measures that the police department has done in conjunction with the school district to ensure the safety of students on campus. The police department continues to work in collaboration with the school district on safety related issues.
Central Park Annex Dedication: Over 50 people attended the dedication of the new Central Park Annex, located at 2902 Miles Drive, on March 22. The new park built by the housing developer (Prometheus) for the City of Santa Clara includes a new playground, restroom, multipurpose grass meadow, picnic area and natural habitat. The neighborhood access on Miles Drive is open during regular park hours.
California Municipal Utilities Association (CMUA) 2018 Award: The City received the 2018 Best Water Program, Large Utility Award by the CMUA on March 26 for the Recycled Water: Retrofits for Development Program, recognizing the City’s long standing commitment to the use of recycled water to lessen the demand on potable water sources. Examples submitted for the award included recycled water projects with Levi’s Stadium, Santa Clara Square, and NVIDIA.
Pathway to Citizenship Resource Fair: On March 26, over 200 community members attended the Santa Clara City Library Citizenship Resource Fair at Central Park Library. Attendees heard about the naturalization process while visiting resource booths from non-profit community organizations. Mayor Lisa Gillmor, Vice Mayor Kathy Watanabe, and Councilmember Debi Davis were joined by Congressman Ro Khanna (District 17) who shared his parent’s journey to citizenship. The theme of the evening was diversity, inclusion and equity. According to the Institute of Museum and Library Services, more than 55 percent of new Americans use the public library at least once a week providing a trusted environment, resources and community connections that can ease the way to full participation in American society.
Chat with the Chief held on March 29: As part of the City of Santa Clara’s ongoing commitment to outstanding customer service, Police Chief Michael J. Sellers hosted another “Chat with the Chief” on March 29 at Henry Schmidt Park. This program provided residents with an opportunity to personally meet their elected Police Chief and other law enforcement representatives in a friendly, casual setting. At this public meeting, residents discussed community matters of interest.
Santa Clara University Research Project on “Safe Routes to Parks”: City staff recently engaged with Santa Clara University (SCU) undergraduate students to develop a research project on Safe Routes to Parks (SRTP), a program modeled after Safe Route to Schools (SR2S). The objective of the study was to identify and analyze barriers and deficiencies that prevent walkability and bikeability around five neighborhood City parks, and provide recommendations for future improvements. The five City parks included Bowers Park, Fremont Park, Henry Schmidt Park, Machado Park and Montague Park. On March 13, City staff attended the students’ presentation, entitled “Spatial and Walkability Analysis of SRTP”, which included ideas for collaboration between public agencies and communities to build walkable and bikeable communities.
CURRENT JOB OPENINGS
Join the Center of What’s Possible! We are currently hiring for the following positions at the City of Santa Clara. To view job descriptions and for information on how to apply, please visit: www.santaclaraca.gov/jobs
- As-Needed Instructor/Lifeguard
- As-Needed Recreation Leader – Jr. Giants Baseball Coach
- Assistant City Clerk
- Assistant Director of Finance
- Associate engineer (Civil)
- Civil Engineering Traffic Intern
- Environmental Program Manager
- Information Technology GIS Intern
- Journey Lineworker
- Per Diem Police Officer Special Events – As Needed
- Police Officer
- Public Information Officer
- Public Safety Dispatcher II
- Recruit Police Officer
RESPONSE TO COUNCIL INQUIRIES
Cost of June Special Election: At the March 20, 2018 Council meeting, a member of the public inquired about the cost of the June special election. On January 30, 2018, this information was disclosed as part of the City Council staff report which recommended a $188,000 appropriation to the City Clerk’s Office budget which Council approved. It is important to note that the cost estimate from the Santa Clara County Registrar of Voters (ROV) received by the City Clerk’s Office indicates an estimated cost of $142,738 for the District Election/Voting Method ballot measure. However, this is not the full cost of a Special Election. In addition to the ROV’s costs, there are other City administrative costs, including translation services, publication and voter outreach costs. Once the final costs related to the election are compiled, an update will be provided via the City Manager’s Blog which will include the ROV and City administrative costs.
City Manager/Executive Director Office Staffing: At the March 20, 2018 City Council meeting, a member of the public made comments about the staffing levels in the City Manager’s Office. The total number of positions has remained at 14 budgeted full-time positions. At this time, 11 positions are filled and 3 vacant (21% vacancy rate). Upon entry into the City Manager’s Office, there were 8 vacancies (57% vacancy rate) and the City Manager has been working to fill vacancies in the Office. In an effort to provide cost-effective service to the residents of Santa Clara, the City Manager downgraded the executive level Stadium Officer position to an Assistant to the City Manager position. These savings will be reflected in the FY 2018/19 Recommended Budget.
El Camino Real (ECR) Specific Plan: Following the Historical and Landmarks Commissions’ (HLC) February 1 meeting and joint dinner with Council on March 6, 2018, it was expressed that the HLC would like further participation in the ECR Specific Plan process, and the HLC appointed Commissioner Nancy Biagini as the HLC representative on the ECR Community Advisory Committee. She will report updates and progress from the meetings back to the HLC. Staff is also adding an HLC agenda item to the meeting to update the Commission on project updates and will present to the Commission at key stages throughout the process.
Staff will attend the Senior Advisory Committee meeting on April 23, 2018 to request they nominate a representative to sit on the Community Advisory Committee. Staff is also in the process of organizing a placemaking speaker series, which will include four talks over the next few months. Confirmed speakers and date/time will soon be announced. Staff anticipates getting feedback from the community in early summer regarding land use and transportation alternatives. This input will allow staff to select a preferred alternative and prepare the framework for the plan.
Patrick Henry Drive and Freedom Circle Specific Plans: Pursuant to direction from the City Council, both the Patrick Henry Drive and Freedom Circle Specific Plans will be fully funded by the developer groups prior to beginning either planning effort. Developer groups for both Patrick Henry Drive and Freedom Circle plans have both submitted draft funding agreements to the City for review. Staff is also finalizing the scopes of work for the two plans with the consulting firms and expects to have the consultant contracts and funding agreements to the Council in the next two months.
LEVI’ STADIUM RELATED UPDATES
Soccer Game on March 23: An international soccer game between the Mexican National Team and Iceland was held at Levi’s Stadium on March 23. There were 64,368 fans in attendance. Several assaults and disturbances involving fans occurred. As a result, additional law enforcement resources from the Santa Clara County Sheriff’s Office, the San Jose Police Department, and the Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety were called in to provide assistance. There were no significant injuries and the crowd dispersed after the game.
Upcoming Stadium Events:
- April 28, 2018: 2018 Monster Jam
- May 11 & May 12, 2018: Taylor Swift Reputation Tour
Anonymous Survey: It has recently come to our attention that someone is contacting Santa Clara residents with survey questions of a seemingly political nature, including questions about elected officials and other political matters. There has been confusion whether the survey is initiated by the City as part of the community engagement directed by the Stadium Authority Board. These interviews are completely unrelated to the research project commissioned by the City, and the City is unaware of who is conducting these interviews, nor does it endorse them. The research project commissioned by the City solely seeks community perspectives on issues such as safety, parking, cleanliness, loitering, lighting, stadium performance curfews, and related items. For more information on the City's commissioned community engagement efforts on issues related to Levi's Stadium, please visit: www.santaclaraca.gov/outreach
Community Engagement Meeting for Issues Related to Levi's Stadium: The community outreach and engagement process to identify the community’s perspectives on issues such as noise, public safety, nuisances, parking, flyovers, crowd control, cleanliness, loitering, lighting, pyrotechnics/fireworks, performance curfew, and other items surrounding Levi’s Stadium is still in progress. Focus groups are also being held for neighborhood and community groups. For more information on the public process, visit www.santaclaraca.gov/outreach
The community is invited to provide input by attending one of these upcoming meetings or by taking the online survey at: www.peakdemocracy.com/5959
- April 26, 6:00 p.m. Central Park Library, Redwood Room 2635 Homestead Ave. RSVP at: https://levistadium4-26-18.eventbrite.com
- April 28, 10:00 a.m. Community Recreation Center, 969 Kiely Boulevard
- May 9, 6:00 p.m. Northside Library Community Room 695 Moreland Way RSVP at https://levistadium5-9-18.eventbrite.com
UPCOMING EVENTS & MEETINGS
Ad Hoc Advisory Districting Committee Meeting on April 12: The Ad Hoc Advisory Districting Committee has been holding public hearings to inform the public about the districting process and hear from residents on factors they believe should be taken in consideration when creating new voting districts, including suggestions for drawing district boundary lines. The next public hearing is on April 12 at 6:00 p.m. at Central Park Library, Redwood Room located at 2635 Homestead Avenue. Your participation is encouraged! To learn more or to provide input on surveys, please visit www.santaclaraca.gov/districtelections
Drop-In Fitness Program at the Community Recreation Center: The Community Recreation Center (CRC), located at 969 Kiely Boulevard, offers an extensive year round Drop-In Fitness Program with Kickboxing, Zumba, Yoga, Bombay Jam, and more. To participate, drop-in passes are available for purchase. CRC offers 11 different classes per week and babysitting is available for the morning weekday classes. All ages, all levels welcome! For more information please visit http://santaclaraca.gov/government/departments/parks-recreation.
“Beauty and the Beast” to be Held on April 6-15: Roberta Jones Junior Theatre continues the 49th Season with the modern classic Broadway musical "Disney's Beauty and the Beast." Based on the Academy Award-winning animated feature, the stage version includes all of the wonderful songs written by Alan Menken and Howard Ashman, along with new songs by Mr. Menken and Tim Rice. This production features a cast and crew of over 80 young people, ages 8-18, a live orchestra, and professional flying effects, provided by Flying By Foy. Performances are April 6, 7, 13 and 14 at 7:00 p.m., April 8 and 15 at 2:00 p.m. at the Mission City Center for Performing Arts, 3250 Monroe Street, on the corner of Calabazas, at Wilcox High School. Tickets are $12 for adults, $6 for children (ages 3-18) and can be bought online at www.RJJT.org, or in person at the Community Recreation Center, 969 Kiely Blvd. in Santa Clara. The show is approximately 2.5 hours long and is appropriate for all ages. Roberta Jones Junior Theatre is a program of the City of Santa Clara Parks and Recreation Department. For more information, please contact Kevin Cornelius, Recreation Supervisor, at (408) 615-3161, or firstname.lastname@example.org
Ulistac Wildflower Day on April 7: Every year Ulistac Natural Area Restoration & Education Project (UNAREP) hosts the Annual Wildflower Day, a FREE celebration of nature and the environment. This year the event is on April 7 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Ulistac Natural Area, located at 4901 Lick Mill Boulevard. There will be plenty to keep kids and grown-ups entertained with resource booths, free tours, guest appearances from Smokey Bear, and live music from South Bay Folks! For more information, please visit http://www.ulistac.org/news.
Sculpture Exhibit from April 9 - June 15: The Cultural Commission is hosting their biennial Sculpture Exhibition with the theme “Out of the Darkness, Light” showcasing more than twenty art sculptures from Bay Area artists. The public is invited to view the artwork at City Hall and the Central Park Library during their respective public hours. For more info, visit www.santaclaraca.gov/sculptureexhibition
Arbor Day/Earth Day on April 13: The City’s Arbor Day/Earth Day community event is designed for the general public to engage in environmental education to promote smarter choices for a healthy lifestyle and a healthy planet. The 31st annual celebration will take place at the Central Park Pavilion on April 13, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., and will include music, activities, performances and information on how to preserve the earth’s natural resources with everyday actions. For more information, www.santaclaraca.gov/arborday
Friday Night Live on April 13: The Cultural Commission presents a performance featuring Charged Particles at the Triton Museum, located at 1505 Warburton Avenue from 7:30 to 9:00 p.m. on April 13. Charged Particles is hot on the jazz scene in the Bay Area, across the country, and internationally. Come enjoy the free entertainment!
Citywide Garage Sale on April 21: The Citywide Garage Sale is a great opportunity for residents to turn unwanted items such as clothing, furniture and home decor into cash, while preventing usable items from ending up in the landfill. Residents have been registering individual, multi-family, or block garage sales since March 19. For garage sale registrations displayed on an interactive map, visit www.santaclaraca.gov/garagesale; a finalized list of garage sale locations will be available for download beginning April 21. For more info, call the Department of Public Works at (408) 615-3080 or email email@example.com
Take Our Children to Work Day on April 26: Children of City employees are invited to participate in a variety of events and activities hosted by City departments during Take Our Children to Work Day on April 26. Children (and legal wards) between the ages of 9 and 18 will learn about the exciting and fulfilling career opportunities available in public service. The event will be April 26, 2018 from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at City Hall.
UPCOMING AGENDA ITEMS
Please view the Tentative Meeting Agenda Calendar for dates of Council Study Sessions, Joint Council/Commission meetings, as well as Council Public Hearing and General Business agenda items, through October online at: https://santaclara.legistar.com/Page.aspx?M=Y. As you can see, while tentative and subject to change, it provides key policy items that the Council/Board will need to dedicate time to deliberate and that may take considerable time during the upcoming meetings.
Deanna J. Santana, City Manager
City Manager's Office
(408) 615-2210 firstname.lastname@example.org