The Pleasanton City Council is set to provide city staff feedback on the 2023-31 Housing Element update Tuesday before submitting the plan to the state's Department of Housing and Community Development for review.
For over a year, the city has been identifying suitable sites for future rezoning and housing development to meet the state-mandated Regional Housing Needs Allocation (RHNA) of 5,965 new units -- the list has been narrowed to 25 sites for inclusion in the environmental analysis.
The city's Housing Element, which is revised every eight years, requires the council to identify adequate sites through the General Plan and zoning process. According to the city report, the plan is projected to be ready for adoption by early 2023.
Apart from reviewing staff recommendations and considerations to the plan, Tuesday's meeting will also be a public hearing item in order to help facilitate public comment following recent community engagement meetings over the past month.
At these meetings residents expressed concerns regarding sites such as the Donlon Elementary School field, the school district office relocation, housing opportunities for young professionals and a desire to see more creative financing options to create affordable units.
However, following months of community advocacy, Pleasanton Unified School District Superintendent David Haglund said during last week's school board meeting that he will be asking the council to remove the Donlon field project from the housing list.
City staff curated the list of potential housing sites using site selection criteria, and analyzed and assigned a rank and score for each site. After being approved by the housing and planning commissions, as well as community members, the housing inventory list was approved by the council in February.
One of the staff recommendations included in Tuesday's staff report will be expanding the development of the large Kiewit and Stoneridge Mall properties with housing to explicitly reference the concept of cost-sharing for infrastructure in the East Pleasanton Specific Plan area.
Another recommendation is focusing funding on very-low- and low-income housing and adding in additional mechanisms for moderate-income.
"In the public outreach, it was made evident that financial assistance is crucial for all segments of the population including moderate-income members of the community and the local workforce," the city staff report reads. "Staff suggests review of the program list and, where possible, focusing funding on very low and low-income while not losing sight of the moderate-income need."
While staff is asking the council to retain the existing list of potential rezoning sites, the report states that during a later phase of the process they will present a refined sites list that reflects future recommendations by the council and the public.
The next steps for the housing plan will be waiting for the Department of Housing and Community Development's review of the plan after staff submit the plan following Tuesday's meeting.
Then, once city staff receive the department's review along with the environmental impact report that is currently being developed, they will hold more public meetings before re-submitting the plan to the housing and development department early next year.
Finally, the council and the Planning Commission will hold a last round of public hearings to consider adoption of the Housing Element around March or May next year.
The council's regular meeting is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. Tuesday (July 19). The full agenda can be accessed here.
In other business
* The City Council will conduct a public hearing for the approval of proceeding with revised traffic mitigation plans related to the longstanding item of a proposed Costco in Pleasanton.
The Johnson Drive Economic Development Zone item is a project aiming to redevelop approximately 40 acres of land fronting Johnson Drive, near Stoneridge Drive and I-680.
Costco is a landowner within the project area and is looking to construct a new store on the property, a project that was mired in litigation until the city and Costco got a favorable ruling from the state appellate court earlier this year.
The project includes public street improvements to reduce the impact of traffic from the new land-uses. In 2018, the city agreed to reimburse a portion of the design and construction costs with traffic impact fees and a portion of the sales tax revenues generated by the proposed Costco store.
The council will decide on Tuesday whether the city will continue moving forward with construction at a higher cost and acquiring the right-of-way needed to construct the traffic mitigation measures. The overall estimated costs have increased from $21.47 million to about $33.5 million since 2017 "due to the time elapsed since the agreement was executed," the staff report reads.
"Although the work required to construct the traffic mitigation measures has not changed, the bids received on April 29, 2022, were significantly higher than the "planning level estimate" prepared in 2017 and discussed within the 2018 agreement," the staff report reads. "Higher costs were expected as construction prices have increased significantly from what they were five years ago."
Because of the increase to the original cost estimate, staff state in the report that the council will have to review the cost overruns, which occur when unexpected change in the project budget ends up increasing the total project cost.
Those cost overruns also led to changes including an amendment that will "modify the cost overrun provisions of the 2018 Agreement so that instead of being required to make direct reimbursement of the Cost Overruns within 60 days of approving the final Cost Certification, a portion of the Cost Overruns will be included in the loan amount."
The loans will be included in the reimbursement agreement between the city and Costco for design and construction.
While staff do recommend proceeding with the project, the council could decide to scrap the project and terminate the 2018 agreement due to the increase in the cost estimate. The city would have to reimburse Costco $1.63 million for any design costs.
* Councilmembers are set to vote and possibly approve the updated labor contract between the Livermore-Pleasanton Fire Department and the local firefighters union.
The tentative agreement between the department and the union includes 13% worth of general wage increases spread over 3-1/2 years, a paramedic premium increase pay from 8% to 10%, short-term staffing policies and a comprehensive drug- and alcohol-testing policy.
The council expressed unanimous support for the proposed contract during a special meeting last month, which was meant to introduce the new agreement publicly so that councilmembers can take a final vote at Tuesday's regular meeting.
The Livermore City Council approved the agreement during its June 27 regular council meeting and the International Association of Fire Fighters Local 1974 membership ratified the contract on June 18.
In the new agreement, set to run until June 30, 2025, LPFD employees will see a 5.5% increase in their salary starting the first full pay period after the contract is approved. In 2023, the increase will be 3.5%, followed by a 3% increase the next year and a 1% increase in 2025 -- to get to the full 13%.
If the contract is ratified, the average pay would go up to a maximum of $121,680, according to the Pleasanton city staff report. By the end of 2025, that number would go up to $131,019. Employees would advance one salary step in their respective jobs until they reach the top step of the applicable salary range.
The three-year financial impact to the LPFD budget is approximately $6.57 million through June 2025 and will be shared between Livermore and Pleasanton, according to the city staff report.
Negotiations have been underway between LPFD and Local 1974 since July 2021 when the prior contract term ended that December.
Other pay-related changes in the contract are the bilingual and education incentive pay. Those who are fluent in multiple languages will receive $45 per pay period and employees who complete courses to get degrees will get an incentive pay monthly ranging from $100 to $175 depending on which degrees they obtain.
* A second reading for the police use of military equipment ordinance will be returning to the council for approval of specific language on how the department will use the armored vehicle and robots during community events.
The council gave initial approval to the ordinance last month that will continue allowing the city's police department to use military or specialized equipment for regular and promotional use.
The ordinance is part of Assembly Bill 481, which was signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom last September requiring police departments in California to keep a running list of what is defined as military equipment for oversight by local governing bodies, which now have to approve or reject the use of such equipment by local law enforcement.
Military equipment, as defined by AB 481, does not necessarily indicate equipment used by the military. Items deemed by the bill to be "military equipment" include robotic vehicles, armored rescue vehicles, tear gas, less-than-lethal weapons such as beanbag shotguns, 40-millimeter projectiles and noise/flash diversionary devices.
During the second reading of the ordinance on June 21, most of the conversation revolved around the armored rescue vehicle, which the Pleasanton Police Department often uses for promotional or community outreach purposes. Vice Mayor Valerie Arkin was the main dissenter on using the vehicle in ways like bringing it to parades and other community events saying it does not belong around kids.
That lead to city staff preparing a separate ordinance amendment specifying that the vehicle, along with bomb diffusing robots, may be authorized to use at community events and city- sponsored events by the chief of police.
* The council is set to enter into an almost $779,000 agreement with the Bonita House so the organization can provide clinician services for the "Alternate Response to Mental Health" pilot program.
The program first started in the summer of 2020 after Pleasanton residents expressed support to strengthen the response to those in mental health crisis by sending mental health clinicians to police calls regarding people suffering from mental health issues.
The Bonita House, which is a private nonprofit mental health agency that offers services for adults diagnosed with co-occurring psychiatric disabilities and substance use disorders, was the only place that responded to the city's requests for a partnership. If approved, the agreement states that the organization will provide two mental health clinicians to join the Alternate Response to Mental Health program.
The council previously appropriated $800,000 to the Alternate Response to Mental Health program. After approval, the next steps will be recruiting the clinicians in August so they can begin work in September.
* Pleasanton residents could experience an increase in costs for burying their loved ones if, at Tuesday's meeting, the council decides to approve the master fee schedule for the Pleasanton Pioneer Cemetery.
The council has set purchase prices for burial plots and service fees in the cemetery after the city purchased the cemetery in 2006. The prices are based upon the "inherited pricing schedule when the city took over cemetery operations, actual costs involved and the Consumer Price Index," according to the staff report.
According to the report, the prices for casket burial plots will increase by $125 and the cremation burial plots will increase by $67. Single caskets or cremation will increase by $50.
"The proposed updates to the fee schedule off-set direct fee increases from the contractors who provide burial services, dig the graves and maintain the cemetery grounds," according to the staff report.
on Jul 20, 2022 at 6:51 am
on Jul 20, 2022 at 6:51 am
Time to build our Costco! Looking for full support from city council to accept the 10 million more to build due to the loosing court effort by opponents! Majority of Pleasanton voted for it! No more delays!!