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City Manager's Blog - Dec. 3- Dec. 28, 2018

Post Date:12/21/2018

GENERAL INFORMATION

Due to the holiday schedule, the next City Manager biweekly blog will be published online on Monday, Jan. 14, 2019.

Shooting Investigation: The Santa Clara Police Department is seeking the public’s assistance for information related to a shooting that occurred on Thursday, Dec. 13, 2018 at about 12:04 a.m. at 1509 Agnew Road, which is the Sobrato Family Living Center. A group of approximately 10 males and females were socializing and drinking in the parking lot, when a dark colored sedan pulled into the lot.  An unknown suspect inside the dark sedan began shooting at the group. Numerous rounds were shot into the crowd, and two victims were struck and sustained non-life-threatening injuries. Anyone who may have witnessed this incident or has information is asked to contact Sergeant Saskia Lagergren at 408-615-4823. Anonymous tips can be left at 408-241-9495.

Temporary, Off-Leash Dog Area Opening December 19: The Larry J. Marsalli Park, located at 1425 Lafayette St., will feature off-leash dog areas for small and large dogs starting Dec. 19 while the Raymond G. Gamma Dog Park is under reconstruction. The park includes off-street parking and a restroom. Please keep dogs on a 6-foot leash into and out of the park. Dog waste stations are provided to help keep the area clean. For more information, please call Parks & Recreation at 408-615-2260.

Minimum Wage Ordinance: On Aug. 22, 2017, the City Council adopted Ordinance No. 1969 which amended the City’s Minimum Wage Ordinance to reach $15.00 per hour by January 1, 2019. Prior to the minimum wage increase to $15.00 per hour, the ordinance also requires the City to review key indicators such as California employment and retail sales and use tax to ensure that the economy supports the wage increase. None of the conditions that would warrant a pause in the minimum wage increase were met. As such, the City’s minimum wage will increase to $15.00 per hour on January 1, 2019 as scheduled per City Ordinance. Beginning on January 1, 2020, the minimum wage will be adjusted annually based on the regional Consumer Price Index (CPI). The official 2019 minimum wage workplace posters are now available in English, Spanish, Chinese and Hindi, and posted on the City’s Minimum Wage webpage.  

Holiday Solid Waste Collection Schedule: No garbage, recycling or Clean Green services will be scheduled on Dec. 25 (Christmas Day) or Jan.1 (New Year’s Day). Collection will take place one day late with Friday routes serviced on Saturday. Santa Clara residents, with cart service, may set out up to two additional 32-gallon garbage bags per week on their regular collection day between Dec. 26, 2018-Jan. 7, 2019 at no extra charge. Multi-family dwellings with shared bin service may request one free service of each garbage bin per year by contacting Mission Trail Waste System at 408-727-5365.  For questions regarding recycling service, contact Recology South Bay at 408-970-5100; for garbage and Clean Green service, contact Mission Trail Waste Systems at 408-727-5365. Residential holiday trees will be collected curbside the week of Jan. 7-11, 2019 on the regular garbage collection day. Please follow the set-out instructions on the webpage.

Salary Setting Commission to Meet for the First Time in January: The Salary Setting Commission will hold its first meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 8 at the Central Park Library. The City of Santa Clara established the Salary Setting Commission to set the compensation for the elected positions of the Mayor, Councilmembers, City Clerk and Police Chief. The Civil Service Commission appointed five commissioners at its Nov. 19, 2018 meeting. City staff will provide the Commission with information and guidelines on how compensation is typically surveyed, a survey of comparators based on geographic proximity, and the size and composition of the City Council. Since the position of the Police Chief is the only one in California, staff will include both city comparators and surrounding county comparators for elected sheriffs. For more information, visit the webpage.

Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) BART Silicon Valley Phase II Project: The VTA’s BART Silicon Valley Phase II Project is a six-mile, four-station extension that will expand BART operations from Berryessa/North San José through downtown San José to the city of Santa Clara. Starting the week of Dec. 31, 2018, general work will begin on weekdays from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Brokaw Rd. and east of the train tracks (see map). Work will continue for approximately three weeks. One lane of traffic will be open at all times where the work is being performed. For more information, visit the VTA webpage or sign up for alerts online.

City Ordinances Establishing a Temporary Moratorium on Motorized Scooters and Bicycle Share programs: Recently a representative for Bird Rides Inc. contacted the City to communicate that they would soon be implementing shared scooters in Santa Clara. These powered scooters are small, lightweight electric scooters that can be rented by the public with a credit card and cell phone. There is no permanent storage location for the scooters, such as an on-street docking station. The scooters have the potential to offer another form of multimodal transportation options and help close last mile connections. However, there are also significant concerns that have arisen in other cities where similar scooters have been implemented:

  • They can travel at up to 15 mph, much faster than pedestrians.
  • While the California Vehicle Code prohibits the use on sidewalks, scooters are frequently being used on sidewalks.
  • Scooters can amass at bus stops and transit hubs in a disorganized manner that affects transit access.
  • Scooters are sometimes left along pedestrian paths of travel where they impair accessibility for mobility devices, block the public right-of-way, and become trip hazards.

In addition to scooters, there are now a number of dockless bike share providers that create similar concerns. The City will be working to establish the appropriate regulations to assure a successful and safe implementation of scooter and bike share programs in the City.  In the interim, the City adopted an emergency ordinance effective Dec. 20, and will consider a regular Ordinance on Jan. 15, adopting a moratorium until Dec.19, 2019.

Winter 2019 Activity Guide: Interested in learning something new? The City’s Parks & Recreation Department offers classes for infants, toddlers, youths, and seniors. You can register online, in person at the Community Recreation Center located at 969 Kiely Blvd. or call 408-615-3140.

Winter Storm Preparation: The City takes a number of steps to prepare for the wet weather season including planning, debris removal and tree maintenance. The City regularly reviews National Weather Service (NWS) reports and flood preparation reports from the Santa Clara Valley Water District (SVCWD). City staff participates in the SCVWD annual Winter Preparedness Workshop which provides flood protection and stream maintenance activities in the county and regularly reports on the capacity of the county's 10 reservoirs along with an update on the District’s preparedness activities.

In advance of every rainy season, City staff remove debris from public storm drain inlets and conduct a leaf-vacuum program to remove fallen leaves from the roadway that potentially clog catch basins and cause surface flooding. The City maintains storm drain pump stations throughout Santa Clara, cleans wet wells, trash racks and maintains the back-up generators at pump station site. City staff may contact community members who completed Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training and ask for their assistance with monitoring storm drains in their neighborhoods and reporting storm drain issues. In 2018, this monitoring involved 425 residents. Street tree maintenance activities are conducted on an ongoing basis and tree trimming adjacent to power lines is done to decrease the potential for fallen debris and downed power lines. Residents can pick up free sandbags at 1700 Walsh Ave., Santa Clara. To learn more about how the public can prepare for winter storms, view these tips online. For more information, contact Public Works at 408-615-3000

2020 Census: The City is supporting local efforts to prepare for the 2020 Census. Preparations began earlier this year to support the accuracy of the Census data. Staff participated in the Boundary and Annexation Survey (BAS), which helps to confirm and update City boundaries for the purpose of the Census, and in the Local Update of Census Addresses (LUCA) program, which helps to ensure accuracy in the Census by confirming address changes or additions within the city limits. The City reviewed address data provided by the Census Bureau in the first half of 2018, including coordination with the County of Santa Clara to perform neighborhood walks to look for additional unrecognized units. The City provided address updates to the Census in July 2018. In late August 2018, the City received $15,000 compensation from the State of California for cooperation in the LUCA program. For more information, contact Community Development at 408-615-2450.

Downtown Community Task Force: The City of Santa Clara is planning for the revitalization of our Downtown by developing a Precise Plan that will provide guidance for new development within a portion of the Downtown Precise Plan Focus Area. The Downtown Community Task Force (DCTF) was approved by the City Council on Dec. 4, 2018. The members of the DCTF include representation from a diverse range of backgrounds and perspectives including the Old Quad Residents Association, Reclaiming Our Downtown, Santa Clara University, and the Historical and Cultural Commissions. The DCTF is advisory, non-voting and will meet over the course of the Downtown Precise Plan planning process to provide input on the vision, land use, circulation, and urban design aspects of the Plan, as well as key policy issues. The first task force meeting was held on Dec. 20. At this meeting the Task Force provided input of the draft Request for Proposals (RFP) for the urban design consultant. For more information, visit the website at: www.santaclaraca.gov/downtownpreciseplan

City receives CalRecylce Grant for the 2019 Pavement Rehabilitation Project: On Dec. 4, 2018, the City was approved for a grant in the amount of $274,033 from the Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle). The funding will support the 2019 Pavement Rehabilitation Project for the application of rubberized hot mix asphalt and rubberized chip seal on various city streets. Using rubberized materials provides longer pavement life and alleviates tire trash loading at landfills. It also promotes sustainability and a reduction in carbon footprints. The 2019 Pavement Rehabilitation Project is expected to begin in summer 2019 and completed by December 2019. For more information, contact Public Works at 408-615-3000.

Willy Wonka Christmas Zumba Party: The Community Recreation Center held a special Willy Wonka Christmas Zumba Party on Dec. 17. The participants danced to holiday classics and Zumba favorites. They were rewarded with a bag of goodies to celebrate their hard work! For more information, contact the Community Recreation Center at 408-615-3140.

Missing Person Located: On Dec.15, a missing person was reported to the Santa Clara Police Department. Jung Kim, age 59, was last seen on Dec. 15 at approximately 8:30 p.m. on the 3500 block of El Camino Real while shopping with her husband. Jung is a San Jose resident who speaks limited English and suffers from dementia. Jung was located on Dec. 17 at a local motel and safely reunited with her family. For more information, contact the Police Department at 408-615-4700.

Shop with a PAL: On Dec. 15, the Santa Clara Police Activities League (P.A.L.) partnered with several organizations and the Santa Clara Unified School District to spread holiday cheer. “Shop with a P.A.L.” paired Santa Clara Police employees, school district employees and volunteers with 50 local middle school students for a $200 holiday shopping spree at Target. Each child had the opportunity to purchase holiday gifts and household items for family members. Following this shopping experience, Royal Coach Tours provided bus service to Mariani’s Inn and Restaurant for a complimentary breakfast. Police Department personnel and P.A.L. will also be delivering gifts and a traditional holiday meal to 10 local families on Dec. 22. This event was made possible by the support from: Target, Royal Coach Tours, Mariani’s Inn and Restaurant, Tony & Alba's Pizza, Togo’s, Chick Fil A, Santa Clara Police Officers Association, SCPD Police Explorers, San Francisco 49ers Foundation, Citizens’ Police Academy Session 45.

Chief Sellers to Represent Rotary Club of Santa Clara as President: The Rotary Club of Santa Clara hosted an annual installation dinner on Dec. 13. At the event, Police Chief Mike Sellers was announced to serve as President for 2020-21. Rotary is a worldwide organization of business and professional leaders that provides humanitarian service, encourages high ethical standards in all vocations, and helps build goodwill and peace in the world. The Rotary Club of Santa Clara participates in local service projects and facilitates fundraisers to fund community programs and scholarships. For more information, contact the Police Department at 408-615-4700.

Deputy Fire Marshal Steve Silva honored as City of Santa Clara 2018 Volunteer of the Year: On Dec. 13, Deputy Fire Marshal Steve Silva was recognized as the Volunteer of the Year for the Santa Clara County Emergency Managers Association. Steve was recognized for his outstanding service in support of emergency management in Santa Clara through his volunteerism with the Mission City Community Fund and the Santa Clara Firefighters Foundation. Steve’s commitment to service was demonstrated last summer when he helped local nonprofits donate lodging and meals for six families that were displaced at an apartment fire. The Emergency Managers Association annually recognizes outstanding volunteer service in cities throughout the county. 

Police Department Annual Promotions and Awards Ceremony: On Dec.10, City dignitaries and employees, residents, current and retired police department employees, and their families gathered in the Council Chambers for the Santa Clara Police Department's Annual Promotion and Awards Ceremony. Promotions that were made over the last year were recognized as were several officers for their actions that occurred over the past year. Awards included a Lifesaving Award for Lieutenant Alan Wolf who performed CPR on an unconscious woman at a motel and a Lifesaving Award for two officers who conducted CPR on a student at a high school. For more information, contact the Police Department at 408-615-4700.

Gingerbread Holiday Party: Santa Clara families enjoyed a sweet afternoon at the Central Park Library’s Gingerbread Holiday Party on Dec. 9. Over 250 children and parents decorated child-sized gingerbread houses with candy and frosting, and made festive reindeer headbands to wear home. The afternoon ended with a surprise visit from Santa himself while families enjoyed hot cocoa and cookies.

15th Annual Fantasy Flight for Kids with Cancer: On Dec. 8, members of the Santa Clara Police Department participated in the Cops Care Cancer Foundation’s 15th Annual Fantasy Flight for Bay Area children stricken with cancer. Approximately 50 VIPs (cancer patients) participated in a presidential-style motorcade from Sunnyvale to the San Jose Police Department Air Hangar at the Mineta San Jose International Airport in San Jose. When the kids arrived at the air hangar, it had magically been transformed into the North Pole with a huge carnival inside. The Sunnyvale Moose Lodge provided an amazing lunch for all. This amazing day was topped off with Santa arriving by police helicopter! Command staff from each agency provided the VIPs and their siblings with a gift from their wish list. For more information, contact the Police Department at 408-615-4700.

Silicon Valley Power Refunding of Existing Bonds: Silicon Valley Power (SVP) has completed refunding of existing bonds and reissuing new bonds for an estimated present value savings of nearly $500,000. The new fixed rate bonds will reduce the utility’s risks from the rising interest rates. SVP sponsored the Annual Holiday Tree Lighting and Fireworks event, and had a booth about energy efficiency programs and SVP’s renewable energy program, Santa Clara Green Power. Staff shared tips on ways customers can save money on their electric bills. In addition to sponsoring the event, SVP is also providing 100% renewable energy to power the holiday tree throughout the season! For more information on the program or energy efficiency tips to reduce your electric bill, visit the webpage or call 408-244-SAVE (7283).

Annual Holiday Tree Lighting: On Dec. 7, the Annual Holiday Tree Lighting was joined by thousands of residents and visitors. A tradition for over 100 years, it was truly a celebration of the holiday season, with a newly decorated 90-foot Redwood Tree, ice skating sessions, entertainment, crafts, food & beverages, fireworks, meet & greet with Santa, and the ceremonial lighting of the tree. This year’s honorary Holiday Tree Lighters are Chuck Blair and Linda and Craig Connelly in recognition for their decades of volunteer service to youth of Santa Clara.

Breakfast with Santa: The Pajama Party was held at the Senior Center on Dec. 8. Santa and his elves surely made this a memorable event. The Boy Scout Troop 349 provided the tasty pancake breakfast to families. Volunteers from the Wilcox High School Cheerleading team helped make the event possible.

Silicon Valley Power Approves 2018 Strategic Plan: On Dec. 4, the City Council approved Silicon Valley Power’s 2018 Strategic Plan. The plan will address the challenges facing the utility over the next 10 years. It includes over 30 initiatives in four areas: Utility Performance Excellence, Customer Engagement and Satisfaction, Progress and Innovation Focus, and Community and Environmental Stewardship. For questions, contact Silicon Valley Power at info@svpower.com.

New Building Official: Craig Johnson will join the City of Santa Clara as the new Building Official. His first day in the office will be Jan. 2. Craig comes from the City of Culver City where he has been the Building Official since 2001. He has significant experience working on large and complex projects including new construction for Sony Pictures, Nike Inc., Apple, Abraxis Bioscience, Westfield, and Amazon. He has been active in the International Code Council (ICC), serving on the code writing committee at the national ICC hearings in 2009 and 2012, and serving on the ICC LA Basin Chapter board for four years. Craig has also worked as an adjunct instructor at Westwood College, teaching courses in building materials and construction methods, construction documents, cost estimating, building codes and inspection, soils and foundation, and green building. 

Current Job Openings

Join the Center of What’s Possible! The City is currently hiring for the following positions; to view job descriptions and for information on how to apply, visit santaclaraca.gov/jobs.

  • As-Needed Construction Project Engineer
  • Laborer
  • As-Needed Instructor/Lifeguard
  • Library Program Coordinator – Branch

Manager

  • Assistant Director of Water & Sewer Utilities
  • Per Diem Police Officer Special Events
  • Electric Division Manager – Joint Power Agency
  • Police Officer
  • Electrician
  • Recruit Police Officer
  • Ground Maintenance Worker II
  • Senior Electric Utility-Engineer-Fiber
  • Human Resources Division Manager – Testing

and Classification

  • Traffic Control Special Events
  • Journey Lineworker

 

 

RESPONSE TO COUNCIL INQUIRIES/FOLLOW-UP

Mediation Underway Following Dispute between Korean American Customer and Denny’s Restaurant in Santa Clara: Allegations of discriminatory conduct at a Denny’s restaurant in Santa Clara earlier this year will now involve mediation. This week, the City Manager was informed by a Denny’s representative that the Department of Fair Housing and Employment will hold a mediation meeting between the two parties involved. As a result, the City Manager will not take further action. A Denny’s customer alleges that the restaurant discriminated against a group of Korean American customers last April. Discrimination of any form won’t be tolerated in the city. The City of Santa Clara remains committed to inclusiveness and celebrating diversity in our community. 

Committee to House the Bay Area (CASA): City staff have been tracking efforts to address the supply of affordable and market rate housing within the Bay Area through regional and State policy making and legislation. The Bay Area’s Sustainable Communities Strategy (SCS) was prepared in 2013 and subsequently updated in 2017 by the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC), the Bay Area's Regional Transportation Agency, and the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG).  MTC has convened the Committee to House the Bay Area (CASA) to identify innovative methods to meet the Plan’s housing targets. CASA' s key principles include (1) increasing housing production at all levels of affordability, (2) preserving existing affordable housing, and (3) protecting vulnerable populations from housing instability and displacement.

From summer 2017 through fall 2018, CASA developed a suite of legislative, financial, policy and regulatory recommendations that together form a Regional Housing Implementation Strategy for presentation at state and regional levels, referred to as the CASA Compact. The City of Santa Clara supports CASA's key principles to address affordable housing needs; however, the City is concerned that the recently released CASA Compact Draft Term Sheets insufficiently address the concerns of Santa Clara and other local jurisdictions, and omit many of the edits under consideration by the MTC Executive Board. The City shares many of the concerns raised by several members of the MTC Executive Board, particularly the lack of outreach with smaller Bay Area jurisdictions and is advocating for broader local participation in the preparation of the Draft Term Sheets. Local government representation in CASA is limited to the three largest cities in the Bay Area region and only three smaller local jurisdictions (out of over 100 local agencies). Most of the affected agencies have not been consulted on the CASA Compact or its elements.

The City has submitted a letter requesting that the Cities Association of Santa Clara County advocate for more dialogue with ABAG and MTC on formulating strategies to produce, preserve and protect affordable housing. The letter can be accessed on the webpage. The City’s ability to support the CASA Compact depends upon if the response to this request.

Sales Tax Revenue Information: In the 2017/18 Budget Year-End Report presented to the City Council on Dec. 4, 2018, staff stated that sales tax revenue ended the year approximately $3.2 million below the budgeted estimate of $59 million. Sales tax trends reflect that actual sales tax revenue has not decreased year-over-year but rather it has remained relatively flat.  Staff believes that sales tax revenue was over-budgeted in FY 2017/18 and was self-corrected in the FY 2018/19 budget in which the budget amount was reduced to $56.5 million. Based on the October monthly status report, with four months or 33% of the year complete, sales tax is trending at 33.64% so the City is currently on target with the adopted 2018/19 budget. 

Resident Reports Recurring Issue with Vehicles Blocking Driveway: During the public presentation portion of the Dec. 4, 2018 City Council meeting, a resident located on Cupples Court indicated that she had an issue with vehicles blocking her driveway. The resident explained that the curb space between her driveway and her neighbor’s driveway is 11-feet long and when vehicles park in the space they often block her driveway. Staff researched this issue and noted that in November 2017, the resident contacted both the Department of Public Works and the Police Department to discuss the matter. The Public Works and Police Departments completed a field investigation, confirmed the 11-foot dimension, and determined that it is legal to park in this 11-foot space if the vehicle does not block a driveway. The resident was presented with an option of having the curb adjacent to her driveway painted red in order to maintain driveway access. A red curb is a visual deterrent to drivers and the Police Department can cite a vehicle parked within a red curbed area. At the time and, as she mentioned at the Dec. 4, 2018 City Council meeting, the resident declined the option for the City to paint the curb red.  If a vehicle is blocking a resident’s driveway, the resident has the option to contact the Police Department to investigate and potentially cite the vehicle for violations of California Vehicle Code Section 22500(e)(1). For more information, contact Public Works at (408) 615-3000 or the Police Department at (408) 615-4700.

 

LEVI’S STADIUM RELATED UPDATES

Levi’s Stadium held a 49ers football game versus the Denver Broncos on Dec. 9, 2018 and a football game with the visiting Seattle Seahawks on Dec.16. There were no significant police events that occurred. 

Upcoming Stadium Events                       

Dec. 23

49ers vs. Bears

Dec. 31

2018 Redbox Bowl

Jan. 7

2019 College Football Playoff National Championship

 

UPCOMING EVENTS AND MEETINGS 

Ice Skating Rink at Central Park:  Open until Jan. 21, 2019 for open skate, classes, or private events, the ice skating rink is located at 969 Kiely Blvd. Admission tickets start at $10 for Youth (4 -12) and $15 for Adults (13 and up). Children 3 and under are free.  For more information, including hours and dates, call the Community Recreation Center at 408-615-3140 or visit the webpage.

Gateway Crossing Project Community Meeting: The Gateway Crossings project, located within the Santa Clara Station Focus Area at the southwest corner of Coleman Ave. and Brokaw Road (1205 Coleman Ave.), was initially heard at the Dec. 4, 2018 City Council meeting. At the meeting, the Council took action to continue the project to the Feb. 5, 2018 City Council hearing so that the applicants, Hunter Storm LLC, could hold a community outreach meeting with mailed notices to the Old Quad neighborhood. The community meeting is scheduled to be held at 6 p.m. on Jan. 16, 2019 at the Locatteli Student Activity Center (Building 710) on the Santa Clara University campus (500 El Camino Real). The applicants propose to construct 1,600 residential units, a 182,000 square foot full-service hotel, and 15,000 square feet of ancillary retail. The project also includes the dedication and development of a new 2.1 acre public park, new infrastructure including new streets, and the improvement of adjacent roadways and sidewalks. On Nov. 14, 2018, the Planning Commission unanimously recommended approval of the project with additional conditions recommending more on-site affordable housing units, additional alternative transportation facilities, and higher transportation demand management measures to be scaled when BART at Santa Clara Station is in operation. For more information on the project, visit the webpage.

Coffee with a Cop: The Police Department will host its next “Coffee with a Cop” event on Friday, Jan.18, 2019, from 8 -9:30 a.m., at the Big Mug Coffee Roaster (3014 El Camino Real). Coffee with a Cop brings police officers and the community members they serve together to discuss issues and learn about policing. For more information, contact the Police Department at 408-615-4700.

Central Park Nights: Free Friday night showcase of local cheer, dance, and music group at the Ice Rink starting at 6 p.m. at at 969 Kiely Blvd. Central Park Nights will surely add to your ice skating experience. It’s available through Jan. 18, 2019. For questions, call 408-615-3140.

 

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