Saturday, January 28, 2017

S.R. City Council Agenda, Jan 31st


Our thanks to our friend, Anne Seeley, of Concerned Citizens For Santa Rosa, for her analysis of this week's City Council agenda:

Friends:     There is no Study Session.

10.2 Request for Agenda Items.
 10.2.1 On 1/24/17, Mayor Coursey asked for an agenda item to discuss Santa Rosa Declaring Itself a Sanctuary City.  The Council will decide whether and when to have this discussion.

12.1 Roseland Area Plan Land Use Corrections.  The reason I include this item is that is shows the City Staff's responsiveness to landowners' needs during the Roseland Annexation mega-project.   When a few property owners on West Hearn Avenue who were required to annex but objected to the loss of some of their previous conditions, City Staff promised to alter their land-use designations to protect their conditions.    When the final document went before the City Council for Approval, these changes hadn't been included.
    BUT those residents checked the maps and appealed to staff to correct the Council's document to recognize what had been promised.
The moral?  Watch those legal documents all the way to final approval!

 14.2 Quiet Zones - Notice of Establishment.  Transportation and Public Works staff advise the Council on how to establish a Quiet Zone with respect to train horns sounding within City limits.  As SMART trains make their trial runs through the City, there has been some unhappiness expressed by people living adjacent to the RR.  The Council needs to send to the Federal Railroad Administration a Notice of Establishment to allow train operators some leeway in following the mandate of the Federal Railroad Agency that trains will sound their horns at all highway-rail intersections.  The Quiet Zone would be established from Bellevue Avenue to San Miguel Road on the north.

 14.3  Amendment to City Code regarding Public Works Contract Policy to approve Modifications and Additions that include a requirement for Prevailing Wage for all City Contracts.

 14.4 Update on the progress of the Courthouse Square Reunification project.

5PM Public Hearings
  15.1 DeTurk Winery Village.  The Council will hear an appeal of the Design Review Board and Cultural Heritage Commission's denial for approval for this project planned for the Northeast corner of the West End neighborhood.   185 housing units are planned.

See you there!   Anne

PS I am sorry to not include the staff reports and presentations as links, but haven't yet figured out how to do it with gmail.  You can see them if you look at the agenda on

(We're glad to add the links to key issues outlined by Anne) - SRT

Sunday, January 22, 2017

S.R.City Council Agenda, January 24th


Thanks once again, to our friend Anne Seeley, of Concerned Citizens For Santa Rosa, for her analysis of this week's City Council meeting agenda:


     By far, the most important reason for you to attend this meeting is the 5PM Public Hearing in which the public (you) are asked to offer your priorities for the Fiscal Year 2017-2018 Budget Year.  This is a significant time to speak up for projects or programs you deem very important.  The Council will  take heed of your input, even if they make other decisions.

1:30  The Council will meet as the Successor Agency to the defunct Redevelopment Agency, to approve repayment of funds as required by State law of 2012, which shut down Redevelopment Agencies statewide.  The amount owed is staggering - likely close to $4.5 Million.  

The Council will hold a closed session: Conference with Labor Negotiators for the Firefighters, Police Officer's Association, Operating Engineers, Maintenance and Utility System Operators, Santa Rosa Employees Association, SEIU Local 1021, Executive Management, City Attorney and Santa Rosa Attorneys' Association and Santa Rosa Management Association.   In other words, almost all employees.  I presume this is a preliminary meeting before each group goes to negotiation, but I don't know.

10.  Mayor's and Council Members' Reports
 10.1.2 Appointment of a Representative and Alternate to the Sonoma County Transportation Authority (SCTA).
 10.1.6 Appointment of a Representative and Alternate to Sonoma Clean Power Authority.
 10.1.7 Appointment of of the Council's Representative and Alternate to the Sonoma County Waste Management Agency (SCWMA).

10.3.1 Mayor's Appointments to County, Regional and State Positions.     The Mayor will ask for the Council's approval.

10.4 Matters for Council Regarding Future Agenda Items.  This is important because it allows individual Council members to bring up for official discussion matters that they think are important.
 10.4.1 Request for an agenda item to consider $20,000 of GAP funding for Legal Aid of Sonoma County.  The request was made by Council member Rogers on January 10, 2017.

14.1 Fiscal Year 2016-2017 Budget Amendment.  See in the link below how City Finances are being used and where changes are being made.

5PM  Public Hearing  Fiscal Year 2017-2018 Budget Priorities.  Each year, the Council holds this hearing to solicit from speakers and writers what they think must be emphasized in the coming year's spending.

See you there!


The budget hearing is specifically to hear the public priorities for spending. It is not a presentation of the existing budget but a way to get input in advance of planning the future budget. Tell us what you value?

And for your information here is the 2016 version of the full budget


Lacinda R. Moore

This link takes you to the page where you can write your budget comments if you cannot attend the CC mtg on Tuesday.

Judy Kennedy

Saturday, January 14, 2017

S.R. Council Agenda, Jan 17th


Our thanks to our friend, Anne Seeley, of Concerned Citizens for Santa Rosa, for this analysis of the January 17th Santa Rosa City Council: 

     The Council meeting for 1/17 has been cancelled.

HOWEVER!   The very next week they'll hold the hearing for the public to speak about Budget Priorities.  This is so often poorly attended, largely, I think because people don't know about it, and because there's not easy access to choices - what is possible.

The Public Hearing will be held on 1/24/17 at or after 5:00PM.    Please do put together any of your organization's goals and make your testimony to the Council so they hear clearly what's important to you.

     Years ago I read an excellent book called, "Soul of a City" which contained this nugget:  Members of the public often feel that they're not qualified to speak to elected leaders unless they know every last thing about a subject.  Instead, the author said, elected leaders need to hear, in your words, not 'plannerese', about what is important to your family and community.

    I'll see you on the 24th!