Agenda 03/19/2002 RPV, City, Council, Meeting, 2002, Agenda RPV City Council Meeting Agenda for 03/19/2002 Rancho Palos Verdes City Council Agenda March 19, 2002
March 19, 2002

DISCLAIMER

The following City Council agenda includes text only version of the staff reports associated with the business matters to be brought before for the City Council at its Regular Meeting of this date. Changes to the staff reports may be necessary prior to the actual City Council meeting. The City Council may elect to delete or continue business matters at the beginning of the City Council Meeting. Additionally, staff reports attachments, including but not limited to, pictures, plans, drawings, spreadsheet presentations, financial statements and correspondences are not included. The attachments are available for review with the official agenda package at the Reception area at City Hall.

...end of disclaimer...

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BEGINNING OF CITY COUNCIL AGENDA

This agenda has been prepared to provide for the orderly progression of City business. Detailed staff reports on specific items are posted in the hallway for public viewing. The City Council wants to hear your comments, however, to run the meeting efficiently, please observe the following rules when you participate in the meeting.

Please try to submit your REQUEST TO ADDRESS THE CITY COUNCIL form to the City Clerk prior to the start of the meeting. You will be called at the appropriate time to make your remarks.

For the sake of efficiency, the City Council agenda is divided into several sections:

Consent Calendar: This section consists of routine items which, unless a request has been received from the public, council or staff to remove a particular item for discussion, are enacted by one motion of the City Council. If you wish to speak to any Consent Calendar item(s) you will be limited to three minutes.

Public Hearings: This section is devoted to noticed hearings. Although the normal time limit is three minutes for each speaker, the Mayor may grant additional time to a representative speaking for an entire group; however, this should not discourage anyone from addressing the City Council individually.

Regular Business: This section contains items of general business and you will be allowed three minutes to speak on any item.

Public Comments: This part of the agenda is reserved for making comments on matters which are NOT on the agenda. If you have submitted a request to speak, you will be called by the City Clerk at the appropriate time and you may speak for up to three minutes. Please limit your comments to matters within the jurisdiction of the City Council. Due to State law, no action can be taken on matters brought up under Public Comments. If action by the City Council is necessary, the matter may be placed on a future agenda or referred to staff, as determined by Council.

Please make your remarks at the lectern microphone and direct your comments to the City Council and not to the staff or the public.

Conduct at the Council Meeting: The City Council has adopted a set of rules for conduct during City Council meetings. The following is an excerpt from those adopted Rules of Procedure:

Section 6.3 The Mayor shall order removed from the Council Chambers any person(s) who commits the following acts at a regular or special meeting of the City Council:

1. Disorderly, contemptuous or insolent behavior toward the Council or any member thereof, tending to interrupt the due and orderly course of said meeting.

2. A breach of the peace, boisterous conduct or violent disturbance, tending to interrupt the due and orderly course of said meeting.

3. Disobedience of any lawful order of the Mayor which shall include an order to be seated or to refrain from addressing the Council.

4. Any other unlawful interference with the due and orderly course of the meeting.




RANCHO PALOS VERDES CITY COUNCIL

REGULAR MEETING

MARCH 19, 2002

FRED HESSE COMMUNITY PARK, 29301 HAWTHORNE BOULEVARD


6:00 P.M.CLOSED SESSION. PLEASE SEE ATTACHED BROWN ACT CHECKLIST FOR DETAILS.

7:00 P.M.REGULAR SESSION

CALL TO ORDER:

ROLL CALL:

FLAG SALUTE:

NEXT RESOL. NO. 2002-20

NEXT ORD. NO. 375

CEREMONIAL MATTERS:

Presentation of proclamation by Mayor McTaggart to Eric Randall.

RECYCLE DRAWING:

APPROVAL OF AGENDA:


APPROVAL OF CONSENT CALENDAR:



1. Motion to waive full reading.

Recommendation: Adopt a motion to waive reading in full of all ordinances presented at this meeting with consent of the waiver of reading deemed to be given by all council members after the reading of the title.



2. Gifts for Parks. (Rosenfeld)

Recommendation: Accept the Gifts for Parks donations and direct staff to prepare letters for the Mayor’s signature expressing the Council’s thanks.



3. Approval of Contract between the City of Rancho Palos Verdes and the Renaissance Esmeralda Resort for Expenses Related to Youth Activities at the California Contract Cities Conference. (Starr)

Recommendation: Authorize staff to sign the proposed contract between the City and the Renaissance Esmeralda Resort related to youth activities during the annual California Contract Cities Conference, May 30-June 2, 2002.



4. Approval of Matching Funds for School Recycling Drive. (Ramezani)

Recommendation: (1) Approve a recycling match for Point Vicente ($100) and Cornerstone Elementary Schools ($100) as part of their November 2001 America Recycles Day, recycling drive and fundraising efforts. (2) Approve additional matching funds, up to a total of $600, to be used for future recycling drives at City schools.



5. Geotechnical Services for the lower San Ramon Canyon Regulations. (Allison)

Recommendation: (1) Award a professional services agreement for geotechnical engineering services to GeoSyntec Consultants, Inc. (2) Authorize the Mayor and the City Clerk to execute a contract with GeoSyntec Consultants, Inc. (3) Authorize the expenditure of up to $30,000 for engineering services for a geotechnical review of the lower San Ramon Canyon.



6. Gift for the Public Works Department. (Allison)

Recommendation: Accept a gift for the Public Works Department and direct staff to prepare a letter of appreciation for the Mayor’s signature.



7. Acquisition of Vehicle for the Public Works Department. (Vaish)

Recommendation: (1) Authorize the Department of Public Works to purchase a new vehicle. (2) Authorize the Mayor and the City Clerk to enter into a purchase agreement with Golden State Truck Center in the amount of $ 21,737.



8. Release of Bond Posted for Vantage Point. (Allison)

Recommendation: Authorize the City Clerk and the Director of Public Works to release a bond posted by Cayman Development Company for the construction of a traffic signal on Crest Road.



9. Revisions to City Council Policy Manual. (Petru)

Recommendation: ADOPT AMENDED POLICY NOS. 1 (VIDEO TAPES OF CITY COUNCIL AND COMMITTEE/COMMISSION MEETINGS), 9 (ADVERTISING IN THE RECREATION BROCHURE), 10 (CITY COUNCIL/COMMITTEE/COMMUNITY RECOGNITION PROGAM, 17 (PROCEDURE FOR AUDIENCE TO ADDRESS CITY COUNCIL, 24 (COMMISSION AND COMMITTEE CHAIR ATTENDANCE AT CITY COUNCIL MEETINGS), AND 25 (POLICY AGAINST HARASSMENT IN THE WORKPLACE); AND, ADOPT NEW POLICY NO. 36 (POLICY AGAINST WORKPLACE VIOLENCE) IN THE CITY COUNCIL POLICY MANUAL.



10. Register of Demands. (McLean)

Recommendation: ADOPT RESOLUTION NO. 2002-__, A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES ALLOWING CERTAIN CLAIMS AND DEMANDS AND SPECIFYING FUNDS FROM WHICH THE SAME ARE TO BE PAID.


PUBLIC HEARINGS:



11. Point Vicente Interpretive Center. (Allison)

Recommendation: Receive testimony from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Department of Toxic Substances Control, and the public regarding the soil remediation project at the Point Vicente Interpretative Center.


PUBLIC COMMENTS: (at approximately 8:40 P.M.)

(This section of the agenda is for audience comments on items NOT on the agenda.)



12. Appeal of Planning Commission’s conditional approval of Conditional Use Permit No. 230, requesting elimination of certain conditions imposed by the Planning Commission for the use of commercial antennae within a residential zone. (Applicant/Appellant: Schmitz & Associates representing James A. Kay, Jr., the owner of the property at 26708 Indian Peak Road). (Fox)

Recommendation: ADOPT RESOLUTION NO. 2002-__, A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES MODIFYING CERTAIN CONDITIONS AS RECOMMENDED BY STAFF, DENYING THE APPEAL, AND CONDITIONALLY APPROVING CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 230.



13. Reconsideration of the Decision on the Appeal of Conditional Use Permit No. 207 (Appellant: Mark Abrams, 44 Oceanaire Drive). (Fox)

Recommendation: Conditionally approve Conditional Use Permit No. 207.


REGULAR BUSINESS:



14. City Advisory Boards: Appointment of Traffic Committee Members; and, Interview of Parks & Recreation and Equestrian Committee Applicants. (Purcell)

Recommendation: (1) Appoint seven members to the Traffic Committee: Four members with a term of office until March 2, 2004; and three members with a term of office until March 7, 2006. (2) Set a date to interview the Chair. (3) Set a date to interview Parks & Recreation Committee and Equestrian Committee applicants.



15. Request to Extend the Use of Temporary Personnel. (Petru)

Recommendation: ADOPT RESOLUTION NO. 2002-__, A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES REQUESTING THE BOARD OF ADMINISTRATION OF THE PUBLIC EMPLOYEES RETIREMENT SYSTEM (CalPERS) TO APPROVE AN EXTENSION OF ALLOWED EMPLOYMENT FOR A RETIRED EMPLOYEE PURSUANT TO THE CALIFORNIA GOVERNMENT CODE.



16. Modification of Rule of Procedure 3.2 to Eliminate Rescheduling of Meetings on Election Dates other than City Election Dates. (Stern)

Recommendation: (1) Modify existing Rule of Procedure 3.2 (Regular Meetings) subpart to 1 so that the City Council does not automatically change its regular meeting date when there is an election, but instead only does so when there is a City Council election. (2) Consider INTRODUCTION of ORDINANCE NO. __ OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES ESTABLISHING REGULAR MEETING DAYS AND AMENDING CHAPTER 2.04 OF THE RANCHO PALOS VERDES MUNICIPAL CODE.



17. Construction Activity at 5888 Mossbank Drive. (Mihranian)

Recommendation: Receive and file information regarding the construction activity at 5888 Mossbank Drive.


CLOSED SESSION REPORT:



ORAL CITY COUNCIL REPORTS: (This section designated to oral reports from councilmembers to report on Council assignments.)



ADJOURNMENT: Adjourn to a time and place certain only if you wish to meet prior to the next regular meeting.



CLOSED SESSION AGENDA CHECKLIST

Based on Government Code Section 54954.5
(All Statutory References are to California Government Code Sections)


CONFERENCE WITH LEGAL COUNSEL

Existing Litigation:
G.C. 54956.9(a)

Name of Case: People of the State; City of Rancho Palos Verdes v. James A. Kay, Jr.

Case No: Los Angeles County Superior Court Case No. YC 037398)

Name of Case: People of the State; City of Rancho Palos Verdes v. Mark J. Abrams

Case No: California Court of Appeal Case No. B151086

Name of Case: Mark J. Abrams v. City of Rancho Palos Verdes

Case No: United States District Court Case No. 00-09071 SVW (RNBx)


PERSONNEL

Public Employee Performance Evaluation

G.C. 54957

Title: City Manager

View the agenda at www.palosverdes.com/RPV or
A full copy of the agenda package is at the counter at Hesse Park.


RANCHO PALOS VERDES CITY COUNCIL

REGULAR MEETING

MARCH 19, 2002

FRED HESSE COMMUNITY PARK, 29301 HAWTHORNE BOULEVARD


6:00 P.M.CLOSED SESSION. PLEASE SEE ATTACHED BROWN ACT CHECKLIST FOR DETAILS.

7:00 P.M.REGULAR SESSION

CALL TO ORDER:

ROLL CALL:

FLAG SALUTE:

NEXT RESOL. NO. 2002-20

NEXT ORD. NO. 375

CEREMONIAL MATTERS:

Presentation of proclamation by Mayor McTaggart to Eric Randall.

RECYCLE DRAWING:

APPROVAL OF AGENDA:


APPROVAL OF CONSENT CALENDAR:



1. Motion to waive full reading.

Recommendation: Adopt a motion to waive reading in full of all ordinances presented at this meeting with consent of the waiver of reading deemed to be given by all council members after the reading of the title.






2. Gifts for Parks. (Rosenfeld)

Recommendation: Accept the Gifts for Parks donations and direct staff to prepare letters for the Mayor’s signature expressing the Council’s thanks.

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND MEMBERS OF CITY COUNCIL

FROM: RON ROSENFELD, DIRECTOR, RECREATION AND PARKS

DATE: MARCH 19, 2002

SUBJECT: GIFTS FOR PARKS

RECOMMENDATION

That the City Council accept the Gifts for Parks donations and direct staff to prepare letters for the Mayor’s signature expressing the Council’s thanks and appreciation.

BACKGROUND

The City’s Gifts for Parks program, established in 1982, provides a means by which interested individuals, organizations, and/or businesses may contribute funds, merchandise, or labor for the enhancement of the City’s Recreation and Parks facilities and programs. Donations, as prescribed by law, are tax deductible as charitable contributions.

ANALYSIS

The City has received the following donations designated for:

2002 ANNUAL JULY 4TH CELEBRATION:

    • $100 from Richard Mueller Sr.
    • $200 from Sun Shower Body Care
    • $100 from Anchor Floor Covering
    • $25 from A.J.N. Co.
    • $100 from Bouchard Communications
    • $500 from J. Quinn Construction
    • $100 from Rolling Hills Nursery
    • $100 from Palos Verdes Awards
    • $100 from Torrentera Landscaping
    • $100 from Travers Tree Service
    • $150 in gift certificates from Palos Verdes Bowl
    • $150 in gift certificates from Red Onion
    • $125 in gift certificates from Ruby’s Diner
    • $50 from MLS co.
    • $35 from Dove Enterprises
    • $100 from L & R Heating and Air Conditioning
    • $125 from DeLong and Associates
    • $100 from Golden Cove Center
    • $50 from Miraleste Hills Community Association

REACH Program Donations

    • $70 from Betty Yoo
    • $100 from Fred and Karen Shimabukuro
    • $50 from C.M. Omoto
    • $25 from Cleone Hoffman
    • $25 from Kathleen Bethel

Breakfast With Santa Donations

    • 150 bagels from Noah’s Bagel’s
    • Assorted fruit from Pavilions
    • Dry cleaning of Santa suit from Seven Seas Golden Cove Cleaners
    • Coffee from Starbucks
    • Tree and poinsettias from Home Depot
    • Assorted decorations from Longs Drugs
    • Assorted food items from Bristol Farms
    • $25 from Ralph’s Market
    • Assorted fresh fruit from Trader Joe’s

Miscellaneous Donations

  • $1000 from Las Candalistas for the Discovery Room at Ladera Linda
  • Fossil sperm whale tooth from Anita Gash
  • 2 boxes of pencils waxed with whale oil from Roxanne Whitaker
  • Baleen snow goggles and a piece of "Aurora Baleen" from Dorothy Belleau
  • Overhead projector from Jeanne Carter for use at Hesse Park

CONCLUSION

It is recommended that the City accept these donations with thanks to all donors.

Respectfully submitted,
Ron Rosenfeld, Director, Recreation and Parks

Reviewed,
Les Evans, City Manager



3. Approval of Contract between the City of Rancho Palos Verdes and the Renaissance Esmeralda Resort for Expenses Related to Youth Activities at the California Contract Cities Conference. (Starr)

Recommendation: Authorize staff to sign the proposed contract between the City and the Renaissance Esmeralda Resort related to youth activities during the annual California Contract Cities Conference, May 30-June 2, 2002.

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND MEMBERS OF CITY COUNCIL

FROM: RON ROSENFELD, DIRECTOR, RECREATION AND PARKS

DATE: MARCH 19, 2002

SUBJECT: APPROVAL OF CONTRACT BETWEEN THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES AND THE RENAISSANCE ESMERALDA RESORT FOR EXPENSES RELATED TO YOUTH ACTIVITIES AT THE CALIFORNIA CONTRACT CITIES CONFERENCE

Staff Coordinator: Holly Starr, Recreation Manager

RECOMMENDATION

Authorize staff to sign the attached contract between the City and the Renaissance Esmeralda Resort related to youth activities during the annual California Contract Cities Conference, May 30-June 2, 2002.

BACKGROUND

Mayor John McTaggart is the President of the California Contract Cities Association. The annual CCCA Conference will be held this year in Palm Springs from Thursday, May 30 through Saturday, June 1. Traditionally, the host City’s responsibilities during the Conference include providing a stimulating program of activities for the children of conference attendees.

DISCUSSION

The Recreation and Parks Department has entered into a tentative agreement with the Esmeralda Resort in Palm Springs to help provide a child-care program during the conference. Activities for the children will include a Miniature Golf Course Building event, a trip to a waterpark, an excursion to The Living Desert nature center, and "Kids Kamp", which will include movies, games, arts & crafts, swimming and food.

Preliminary discussions between City staff, representatives of the California Contract Cities Association, and Esmeralda Resort personnel have been positive and productive.

CONCLUSION

The attached contract has been approved by the City Attorney, and sufficient funds have already been budgeted. Each participant will pay a registration fee. All revenues collected from registration will offset the cost of programming. The total revenue collected, using recent attendance figures, should range between $1500-$3000. Based upon discussions with Resort staff, the terms laid out in the enclosed contract, and with Council approval, the City will be able to offer the kind of child care program attendees of the California Contract Conference have come to enjoy.

Respectfully Submitted,
Ron Rosenfeld, Director, Recreation and Parks

Reviewed,
Les Evans, City Manager



4. Approval of Matching Funds for School Recycling Drive. (Ramezani)

Recommendation: (1) Approve a recycling match for Point Vicente ($100) and Cornerstone Elementary Schools ($100) as part of their November 2001 America Recycles Day, recycling drive and fundraising efforts. (2) Approve additional matching funds, up to a total of $600, to be used for future recycling drives at City schools.

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND MEMBERS OF THE CITY COUNCIL

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC WORKS

DATE: MARCH 19, 2002

SUBJECT: PROVIDE MATCHING FUNDS FOR SCHOOL RECYCLING DRIVE

Staff Coordinator: Lauren Ramezani, Sr. Administrative Analyst

RECOMMENDATION

  1. Approve a recycling match for Point Vicente ($100) and Cornerstone Elementary Schools ($100) as part of their November 2001 America Recycles Day, recycling drive and fundraising efforts.
  2. Approve additional matching funds, up to a total of $600, to be used towards future recycling drives at City schools.

BACKGROUND

In California, every year, one day in November is designated as the America Recycles Day. As part of that, many recycling, reuse and reduce activities take place throughout the State to further educate people on the importance of recycling.

DISCUSSION

In November 2001, Waste Management of Los Angeles, the City's authorized residential hauler, invited schools in Rancho Palos Verdes (RPV), Manhattan Beach and Redondo Beach to participate in a fundraiser. Point Vicente and Cornerstone Elementary Schools participated in the fund raising effort with all proceeds from the sale of the recyclables to be given to the September 11th Disaster Relief Fund (American Red Cross/United Way). All students were encouraged to bring recyclable items such as paper, newspaper, cardboard, cans, bottles and beverage containers to their school during the week of November 12 through November 16, 2001. The school children eagerly participated and filled up the designated recycling dumpsters at their schools.

As a "thank you" for the schools recycling efforts, Mayor McTaggart presented a check in the amount of $100 from Waste Management to Point Vicente Elementary on Tuesday, February 26, 2002. A similar $100 check had also been given to Cornerstone Elementary by Waste Management. Mayor McTaggart requested staff to bring this item to the Council with a recommendation that the City provide the two RPV schools an equal match in the amount of $100.

Staff also recommends providing a similar $100 match for each City school if in the future schools participate in similar recycling drives, when such events promote recycling on special days such as on Earth Day or America Recycles Day.

FISCAL IMPACT

If approved, Point Vicente and Cornerstone Elementary Schools will each receive a check in the amount of $100 from the City as a "thank you" and encouragement for their recycling efforts. Additionally, funds for a total of $600, for up to 6 events, will be authorized for use in conjunction with future recycling drives at City schools. Funds are available under City Grants, in the Solid Waste Fund.

Respectfully Submitted:
Dean E. Allison, Director of Public Works

Reviewed by:
Les Evans, City Manager



5. Geotechnical Services for the lower San Ramon Canyon Regulations. (Allison)

Recommendation: (1) Award a professional services agreement for geotechnical engineering services to GeoSyntec Consultants, Inc. (2) Authorize the Mayor and the City Clerk to execute a contract with GeoSyntec Consultants, Inc. (3) Authorize the expenditure of up to $30,000 for engineering services for a geotechnical review of the lower San Ramon Canyon.

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND MEMBERS OF THE CITY COUNCIL

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC WORKS

DATE: MARCH 19, 2002

SUBJECT: GEOTECHNICAL SERVICES FOR THE LOWER SAN RAMON CANYON REGULATIONS

RECOMMENDATIONS

  1. Award a professional services agreement for geotechnical engineering services to GeoSyntec Consultants Inc.

  2. Authorize the Mayor and City Clerk to execute a contract with GeoSyntec Consultants, Inc.

  3. Authorize the expenditure of up to $ 30,000 for engineering services for a geotechnical review of the lower San Ramon Canyon.

BACKGROUND

Geotechnical engineering services are needed to investigate the erosion and slope failures along the lower reaches of the San Ramon Canyon in the vicinity of the switchback along Palos Verdes Drive East. The concern is that there is considerable erosion along the eastern bank canyon. If a significant portion of the slope fails the canyon drainage could be blocked, causing flooding to the roadways below. Perhaps more importantly a blockage in the canyon could cause drainage to enter into the failure plane of the South Shores Landslide, and destabilize the landslide. The South Shore Landslide mass encompasses portions of both Palos Verdes Drive South and Palos Verdes East. See attached.

To date staff has consulted with Zeiser Kling Consultants our ‘on-call’ geologist, conducted a field investigation, completed a topographic survey, and consulted with the City of Los Angeles. From these preliminary investigations it is clear that considerable geotechnical studies will be required to better understand the geotechnical conditions and to set a course of action.

DISCUSSION

To obtain the needed geotechnical services staff contacted several firms with whom we have ‘on-call’ service agreements. After discussing the project with these firms as well as the availability their staff, it was concluded that the City should look beyond the current ‘on-call’ service providers for this complex project.

Staff requested a Statement of Qualifications from GeoSyntec Consultants. This firm was selected based upon their qualifications, their experience with complex projects, and the availability of their staff. Attached is a copy of the resume of several members of the firm. The City has never contracted with this firm; however, staff is familiar with several members of their staff because they have represented other parties on projects involving the City.

The City’s ultimate course of action on this project is not apparent, the project geology is complex, and a clear scope of work cannot be prepared. For these reasons staff proposes that for the initial stages of the project, services should be obtained on a time and material basis. It is expected that the work will consist of a field investigation, a review of existing data on the South Shores Landslide, and the preparation of a risk assessment.

CONCLUSION

Adopting the staff recommendation will award a professional service agreement to GeoSyntec Consultants for needed geotechnical engineering services.

FISCAL IMPACT

The recommended actions will result in the expenditure of up to $ 30,000 for engineering services. Funding is available in the adopted FY 01 – 02 budget under drainage improvements and investigations.

Submitted by,
Dean E. Allison, Director of Public Works

Reviewed by,
Les Evans, City Manager

Attachments:
Resumes from GeoSyntec
Location Map
Photographs



6. Gift for the Public Works Department. (Allison)

Recommendation: Accept a gift for the Public Works Department and direct staff to prepare a letter of appreciation for the Mayor’s signature.

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND MEMBERS OF CITY COUNCIL

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC WORKS

DATE: MARCH 19, 2002

SUBJECT: GIFT FOR THE PUBLIC WORKS DEPARTMENT

RECOMMENDATION

Accept a gift for the Public Works Department and direct staff to prepare a letter of appreciation for the Mayor’s signature.

BACKGROUND

In 1982 the City established a Gifts for the City Program. Pursuant to this program, interested individuals, organizations, and/or businesses can contribute funds, merchandise, or labor for the enhancement of City programs. Donations, as prescribed by law, are tax deductible as charitable contributions.

DISCUSSION

Mr. Joseph Agronick, a forty-year Rancho Palos Verdes homeowner, has offered to donate a 4,000-watt portable generator to the Public Works Department. This generator could be used to provide electrical power during an emergency or a special event. Specific uses may include generating power for:

    • Park site repairs at a remote location.
    • The Abalone Cove Sewer Pump Station during a power failure.
    • A special event such as the City’s 4th of July celebration.

Staff inspected the generator and determined that the item is relatively new and has been seldom used. Hence the acceptance of this generator will require no up front maintenance or repair expenses. Therefore, staff recommends that the Council accept this donation and direct staff to prepare a letter of appreciation for the Mayor’s signature.

CONCLUSION

The acceptance of this generator will enable staff to be more responsive to those tasks requiring a portable electrical power generator.

ALTERNATIVE ACTION

Forego acceptance of this donation.

FISCAL IMPACT

The acceptance of this generator will not require a fiscal expenditure.

Respectfully submitted,
Dean Allison, Director of Public Works

Reviewed,
Les Evans, City Manager



7. Acquisition of Vehicle for the Public Works Department. (Vaish)

Recommendation: (1) Authorize the Department of Public Works to purchase a new vehicle. (2) Authorize the Mayor and the City Clerk to enter into a purchase agreement with Golden State Truck Center in the amount of $ 21,737.

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND MEMBERS OF THE CITY COUNCIL

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC WORKS

DATE: March 19, 2002

SUBJECT: ACQUISITION OF VEHICLE FOR THE DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS

RECOMMENDATIONS

  1. Authorize the Department of Public Works to purchase a new vehicle

  2. Authorize the Mayor and City Clerk to enter into a purchase agreement with Golden State Truck Center, in the amount of $ 21,737.84.00.

BACKGROUND

  1. The equipment replacement fund includes $30,000 for the acquisition of a new vehicle for the Public Works department. Funding for this item was carried over from FY 00-01. The new vehicle will replace two existing vehicles in the City’s fleet; a 1991 Ford Taurus and 1993 Ford Ranger, which are fully depreciated and will require significant maintenance to become operational.

The Department recommends the purchase of a 2002 Ford Ranger 4x4. The vehicle will be used primarily by the department’s Maintenance staff and will be particularly useful for off-road destinations. The vehicle 1991 Ford Taurus, and 1993 Ford Ranger will be traded in for new vehicle purchase.

DISCUSSION

A Notice Inviting Bids for the purchase of a 2002 Ford Ranger Edge 4x4 was published in the Daily Breeze and PV news in accordance with the purchasing process identified in Municipal Code Section 2.44. A subsequent request was posted on the Internet to certified dealerships. Under the terms of the purchase, agreement the 1991 Ford Taurus and 1993 Ford Ranger vehicles will be traded in. The following is a summary of bids:

DEALER

BID PRICE
(Before Trade in)

BID PRICE
(AFTER TRADE IN)

FINAL PRICE

Golden State Truck Center

$21831.00 Does not Includes, Fees, Tax, and DMV fee

$20,081.00

$21,737.84 includes Two Trade in, Discount, Tax, DMV Fee.

Worthington Ford

$22,135.55 does not include fees, Tax, and DMV fee.

$22,135.55

$22,135.55 plus Any applicable tax, License Fee.

CONCLUSION

Based on the bids received, staff recommends the acquisition of a new vehicle from Golden State Truck Center. The color of the new vehicle will be white to match the City’s existing vehicle fleet.

ALTERNATIVES

  1. Deny the proposed acquisition.
  2. Other direction as the City Council deems appropriate.

FISCAL IMPACT

Funding is available in the adopted FY 01-02 budget.

Respectfully yours,
Dean Allison, Director of Public Works

Reviewed by:
Les Evans, City Manager



8. Release of Bond Posted for Vantage Point. (Allison)

Recommendation: Authorize the City Clerk and the Director of Public Works to release a bond posted by Cayman Development Company for the construction of a traffic signal on Crest Road.

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND MEMBERS OF THE CITY COUNCIL

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC WORKS

DATE: MARCH 19, 2002

SUBJECT: RELEASE OF BOND POSTED FOR VANTAGE POINTE

RECOMMENDATION

Authorize the City Clerk and Director of Public Works to release a bond posted by Cayman Development Company for the construction of a traffic signal on Crest Road

BACKGROUND / DISCUSSION

The Vantage Pointe Development is a residential development in the City of Rolling Hills Estates adjacent to Crest Road. When this project was approved, the City of Rancho Palos Verdes required that a bond in the amount of $40,000 be posted to pay a share of a new traffic signal that may be required on Crest Road. This bond was to remain in place for a period of five years.

Construction of a traffic signal on Crest Road at Highridge Road was recently completed and Cayman Development Company has made a cash payment of $40,000 towards that project.

CONCLUSIONS

Adopting the staff recommendation will release the bond posted by Cayman Development Company for a new traffic signal on Crest Road.

ALTERNATIVES

Staff could identify no appropriate alternative actions.

FISCAL IMPACT

The recommended action will have no fiscal impact.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Tract number:
52016 (Rolling Hills Estates)

Bond Number:
3SM 889 953 00

Principal:
Cayman Development Company
18012 Cowan, Suite 200
Irvine, California 92614-6810

Surety:
Lou Jones Associates
American Motorists Insurance Company
7470 N. Figueroa
Los Angeles, CA 90041
Telephone: (323) 257-8291

Submitted by,
Dean E. Allison, Director of Public Works

Reviewed,
Les Evans, City Manager



9. Revisions to City Council Policy Manual. (Petru)

Recommendation: ADOPT AMENDED POLICY NOS. 1 (VIDEO TAPES OF CITY COUNCIL AND COMMITTEE/COMMISSION MEETINGS), 9 (ADVERTISING IN THE RECREATION BROCHURE), 10 (CITY COUNCIL/COMMITTEE/COMMUNITY RECOGNITION PROGAM, 17 (PROCEDURE FOR AUDIENCE TO ADDRESS CITY COUNCIL, 24 (COMMISSION AND COMMITTEE CHAIR ATTENDANCE AT CITY COUNCIL MEETINGS), AND 25 (POLICY AGAINST HARASSMENT IN THE WORKPLACE); AND, ADOPT NEW POLICY NO. 36 (POLICY AGAINST WORKPLACE VIOLENCE) IN THE CITY COUNCIL POLICY MANUAL.

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND CITY COUNCIL

FROM: ASSISTANT CITY MANAGER

DATE: MARCH 19, 2002

SUBJECT: REVISIONS TO CITY COUNCIL POLICY MANUAL

RECOMMENDATION

Adopt amended City Council Policy Nos. 1 (Video Tapes of City Council and Committee/ Commission Meetings), 9 (Advertising in the Recreation Brochure), 10 (City Council/ Committee/Community Recognition Program), 17 (Procedure for Audience to Address City Council), 24 (Commission and Committee Chair Attendance at City Council Meetings) and 25 (Policy Against Harassment in the Workplace), and adopt new Policy No. 36 (Policy Against Workplace Violence).

BACKGROUND

The Council has recently made several modifications to the policies contained in the City Council’s Policy Manual. This prompted staff to look at the other policies in the Manual to determine if they were up-to-date, consistent with state law, etc. As a result of this effort, staff has identified several policies that the Council may wish to consider modifying.

DISCUSSION

Staff recommends that the following City Council Policies be amended or modified, as appropriate. Proposed additions to the text of a particular Policy are shown in underline text and proposed deletions shown in strikeout text.

Policy No. 1 – Video Tapes of City Council and Committee/Commission Meetings

This policy was adopted in 1992 and has never been amended. Since its adoption, there have been some changes in state law regarding public records, as well as advancements in technology that require some modifications to be made to the original language of the policy. The most significant changes in technology relate to creation of digital video disks (DVD) and the development of the Internet. Staff worked with the City Attorney’s Office to craft the following revisions to the existing policy:

It shall be the policy of the City Council relating to the make videotaping/audio recordings of City Council and Planning Commission meetings and special City Committee/Commission meetings.

If the meeting is videotaped, that the tapes will be retained only during such time that the official minutes of the meeting are being prepared by the City Clerk/designated minute taker or as necessary for absent Council members to review the missed meeting. During such time, the tape may be viewed or copied by any member of the public at City Hall at his/her own expense. Additionally, tapes will not be copied for any member of the public unless approved by the City Council at a duly convened meeting of the City Council. After the approval of the minutes by the City Council at a public meeting, but in no case sooner than thirty (30) days after taping, the videotape shall be erased or destroyed unless requested to be retained by the City Council, City Attorney or City Manager, or if a member of the public requests in writing before the subject hearing that the tape be retained in anticipation of litigation.

If the meeting is recorded on digital videodisk (DVD), the DVD shall be retained as a permanent record of the meeting for no less than five (5) years. During such time, the DVD may be viewed or copied by any member of the public at City Hall at his/her own expense.

The recordings of meetings that are available on the City’s official website are considered duplicate records and can be deleted from the website at the discretion of the City staff.

Policy No. 8 – Friday Status Report

Prior to 1994, the City Manager’s Weekly Administrative Report was delivered to the City Council on Fridays, hence the nickname "Friday Report." However, with the implementation of the 9/80 work week, staff began delivering the Report to Council on Thursdays, because of the limited staff available on Fridays to photocopy and distribute the document. Therefore, staff proposes to change all of the references in Policy No. 8 from "Friday Report" to "Weekly Administrative Report."

Policy No. 9 – Advertising in the Recreation Brochure

Prior to 1992, the City produced a quarterly Recreation Brochure that was mailed to every household in the City with information about the City’s various recreational programs, classes and events. To offset the cost of production, the City solicited local businesses and organizations to place advertisements in the brochure. However, following the reorganization of the Recreation and Parks Department, which resulted in the elimination of most of the special programs and events, and the privatization of the recreation classes, the City discontinued production of the brochure. In light of the fact that the City has not produced a Recreation Brochure in last ten years, staff recommends that Policy No. 9 be rescinded and removed from the Policy Manual.

Policy No. 10 – City Council/Committee/Community Recognition Program

This policy provides for the presentation of a plaque to retiring City Council members to commemorate their service to the City. The City has traditionally used the official "City Tile" for these purposes. The current policy states that the plaque shall be large enough to accommodate the mounting of a gavel and an inscription noting the term of service. In recent years, however, rather than mounting a gavel to the plaque, the City has been mounting a City Council badge instead. Staff recommends that Policy No. 10 be amended to reflect this change in practice as follows:

City Council Members; with a plaque large enough to accommodate the mounting of a gavel City Council badge and an inscription noting the term of service.

Policy No. 17 – Procedure for Audience to Address City Council

In 1993, the City Council adopted a set of Rules of Procedure via Resolution No. 93-20. City Council Policy No.17 reiterates the language included in the adopted City Council Rules of Procedure regarding audience participation at City Council meetings (Exhibit A: Subjects 5.5 – 6.5 "Citizens’ Rights"). Policy No. 17 also specifies that certain procedures contained in the Rules of Procedure be included on the agenda cover sheet prepared by the City Clerk for each regular meeting. On January 18, 2000, the City Council adopted new Rules of Procedures via Resolution No. 2000- 01. While the new Rules did not change the language regarding Citizens’ Rights, Policy No. 17 needs to be revised to refer to the more current resolution number and to include the most current excerpt from that document as an attachment.

It shall be the policy of the City Council to follow the procedures established under Resolution No. 93-20 2000-01, Exhibit "A", Subjects 5.5 – 6.5 "Citizens’ Rights" with regard to addressing the Council. Additionally, it shall be the policy of the city Council that the procedures outlined in Resolution No. 93-20 2000-01, Exhibit "A" be included on the agenda cover sheet by the City Clerk to give direction to members of the public who wish to address the City Council at meetings.

Policy No. 24 – Commission and Committee Chair Attendance at City Council Meetings

This policy was adopted in 1994 and has not been amended since that time. It stipulates that the Chairman of the Planning Commission attend City Council meetings and be available to answer questions when a Planning Commission decision has been appealed to the City Council. Although it was applied in a fairly consistent manner early on, this practice has only been adhered to sporadically in recent years. Staff raises the issue only to determine if Council would like to leave the policy as it is currently written or modify it. Examples of possible modifications could be to require the Planning Commission Chairman’s attendance only if requested by the City Council or in cases where the Commission’s decision was not unanimous.

Policy No. 25 – Policy Against Harassment in the Workplace

As part of the adoption of the revised Competitive Service and Management Employee Personnel Rules in January 2002, the Council adopted a revised Policy Against Harassment in the Workplace to reflect recent changes in state law regarding this topic. In order to make the City Council Policy consistent with the adopted Personnel Rules, staff is recommending modifications to the first and fourth paragraphs in the existing policy:

First paragraph:

The City of Rancho Palos Verdes has adopted a policy prohibiting harassment in the workplace on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, ancestry, alienage, citizenship status, disability, pregnancy, medical condition (cancer-related), marital status, sex, sexual orientation, age (40 and over 40), or any other status protected by California and federal law.

Fourth paragraph:

Under applicable law, the City can be liable for the actions of employees, non-employees and appointed and elected officials. The harasser, as well as management representatives who know about the harassment and condoned or ratified it, can be held personally liable for the harassment. Personnel who perpetuate harassment that is prohibited by State law may be personally liable.  In addition, individual supervisors and management personnel who aid and abet the illegal harassment may be subject to suit and, potentially, personal liability. Certain forms of harassment are crimes.

In addition to the Personnel Rules and City Council Policy Manual, staff has included the entire text of the Policy Against Harassment in the Workplace in the Administrative Instruction Manual, which is created and maintained by the City Manager’s Office. It is useful to include the policy in all three City documents, in order to provide the broadest dissemination of this important information.

Policy No. 36 – Policy Against Workplace Violence

The revised Competitive Service and Management Employee Personnel Rules adopted by the Council in January 2002 included a new Policy Against Workplace Violence. In light of the adoption of this new policy, staff recommends that a new Policy No. 26 (Policy Against Workplace Violence) be added to the City Council Policy Manual. The text of the new policy is presented below:

The City of Rancho Palos Verdes has adopted a policy prohibiting violence in the workplace. The Policy has been adopted as Rule XIV of the Competitive Service Employee Personnel Rules and Rule X of the Management Employee Personnel Rules. The Policy is summarized below.

The City is committed to providing a safe work environment that is free of violence or the threat of violence. The City strictly prohibits employees, non-employees, appointed officials and City Council members, while on City premises or engaged in City-related activities, from behaving in a violent or threatening manner. The Policy sets forth definitions of what actions constitute workplace violence and requires any employee who witnesses or becomes aware of an instance of workplace violence, or who is a victim of such violence, to notify their immediate supervisor. The Policy sets forth the actions the City shall take to investigate all complaints or allegations of workplace violence.

If the City determines that this Policy has been violated, appropriate corrective action will be taken. Corrective action involving an employee may include discipline of the employee, up to and including termination. If the violent behavior involves a non-employee, the City will take action in an effort to prevent future occurrences. Corrective action involving commissions, committee members or volunteers may include severing their relationship with the City. Corrective action involving City Council members may include censure by the City Council. Action may be taken under this Policy in addition to any available civil or criminal action.

In addition to the Personnel Rules and City Council Policy Manual, staff has included the entire text of the Policy Against Workplace Violence in the Administrative Instruction Manual.

CONCLUSION

Prompted by the City Council’s recent amendments to other portions of the City Council Policy Manual, staff reviewed the rest of the manual to determine if there were other policies that needed updating or revision. As a result of this effort, staff has identified seven policies that the Council may want to amend to reflect current circumstances and/or practices.

Respectfully submitted:
Carolynn Petru, Assistant City Manager

Reviewed,
les Evans, City Manager



10. Register of Demands. (McLean)

Recommendation: ADOPT RESOLUTION NO. 2002-__, A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES ALLOWING CERTAIN CLAIMS AND DEMANDS AND SPECIFYING FUNDS FROM WHICH THE SAME ARE TO BE PAID.


PUBLIC HEARINGS:



11. Point Vicente Interpretive Center. (Allison)

Recommendation: Receive testimony from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Department of Toxic Substances Control, and the public regarding the soil remediation project at the Point Vicente Interpretative Center.

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND MEMBERS OF THE CITY COUNCIL

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC WORKS

DATE: MARCH 19, 2002

SUBJECT: POINT VICENTE INTERPRETIVE CENTER

RECOMMENDATION

Conduct a public hearing to receive testimony from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Department of Toxic Substances Control, and the public regarding the soil remediation project at the Point Vicente Interpretive Center.

BACKGROUND

In August 1999 lead was first detected in the soil at the Point Vicente Interpretive Center during the construction of a building expansion project. Since that time the City has worked with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) and the Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) to prepare a soil remediation plan. Approximately ten months ago the Corps agreed to fund the clean up under the Former Used Defense Site (FUDS) program.

In accordance with federal guidelines, engineering staff from the Corps has prepared the following reports, which outline the work to take place:

Remedial Investigation Report

To investigate the level and extent of soil contamination

Feasibility Study

To develop and evaluate cleanup actions for the site

Remedial Action Plan

To propose how the site will be cleaned up

Public Participation Program

To assure the public is engaged in the process

These reports have been on file at City Hall, Hesse Park, and at the Miraleste Library for public review since February 25, 2002. The purpose of this public hearing is to receive a report from the Corps on the proposed remediation plan and to hear testimony on the plan from the public.

DISCUSSION

A significant portion of the contaminated soil was inadvertently removed when the site was graded as part of the building expansion project. This soil material has been properly disposed of since that time. However, several isolated locations of soil with high lead concentrations – or hot spots – remain at the site. In addition there is a four-acre area over which bullet fragments have been observed.

The Remedial Action Plan proposes to ‘surgically’ remove the several hot spots and transport the excavated soil to an appropriate landfill. The plan also proposes to perform a shallow excavation over the area where bullet fragments have been found. The material will be screened and any bullet fragments will be removed.

In working with the Corps and the DTSC on the Remedial Action Plan four issues emerged as most important from the City’s perspective.

  1. The clean up must be such that it is unlikely that that more contaminated soil will be encountered when construction of the building expansion takes place.

  2. A contingency plan must be established for the possibility that the City will encounter contaminated soil the building expansion project.

  3. The level of clean up must be high enough to assure that there are no unreasonable deed restrictions placed on the property.

  4. The portion of the site impacted by the clean up must be properly restored.

The proposed Remedial Action Plan properly addresses each of these issues.

The proposed Remedial Action Plan will extensively sample and test the soil to assure that the clean up is complete. The testing will focus on the area where a storm drain is proposed, and the area of the building foundation expansion.

Despite the extensive efforts to remove all contaminated soil from the site, there is a remote chance that some contamination will be left at the site and will be encountered by the City during the building expansion project. This is due to the random nature in which contaminated soil was found at the site.

Under the proposed Remedial Action Plan the City will phase its construction such that the underground aspects – storm drain and foundation construction – will take place early on, and shortly after the Corps has completed the clean up. During the time that the City is constructing these underground features the contractor from the Corps will be on-site, in a stand by position, to resolve any soil contamination issues – at the expense of the Corps – in an orderly and efficient manner.

It is important that the clean up levels be high enough so that there are not unreasonable deed restrictions placed on the property by the DTSC. This will provide the City maximum freedom on the future use of the site. Although no final decisions have been made, in meetings with the DTSC, they have indicated that the cleanup levels proposed by the Corps are high enough such that the only deed restrictions that will be placed on the property will relate to the fact that there may be contaminated soil under the existing building. The proposed deed restriction will require that special procedures take place if the existing building is ever demolished.

Proper site restoration is a part of the proposed Remedial Action Plan. The plan requires the Corps to import topsoil, place hyroseed, plant new trees, and construct an irrigation system in the area impacted by any soil removal.

CONCLUSION

The Remedial Action Plan proposed by the Corps will properly clean up the remaining soil contamination at the site, and will allow the City to reopen the Point Vicente Interpretive Center property and move forward with its building expansion project.

Adopting the staff recommendation will allow the project to cleanup the Point Vicente Interpretive Center to move forward in the Corps’s approval process. The current schedule calls for the soil remediation to begin in July 2002.

ALTERNATIVE ACTIONS

Staff could identify no alternative actions

FISCAL IMPACT

The recommendation will have no fiscal impact

Respectfully submitted,
Dean Allison, Director of Public Works

Reviewed,
Les Evans, City Manager


PUBLIC COMMENTS: (at approximately 8:40 P.M.)

(This section of the agenda is for audience comments on items NOT on the agenda.)



12. Appeal of Planning Commission’s conditional approval of Conditional Use Permit No. 230, requesting elimination of certain conditions imposed by the Planning Commission for the use of commercial antennae within a residential zone. (Applicant/Appellant: Schmitz & Associates representing James A. Kay, Jr., the owner of the property at 26708 Indian Peak Road). (Fox)

Recommendation: ADOPT RESOLUTION NO. 2002-__, A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES MODIFYING CERTAIN CONDITIONS AS RECOMMENDED BY STAFF, DENYING THE APPEAL, AND CONDITIONALLY APPROVING CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 230.

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND MEMBERS OF THE CITY COUNCIL

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING AND CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: MARCH 19, 2002

SUBJECT: APPEAL OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION’S CONDITIONAL OF APPROVAL OF CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 230, REQUESTING ELIMINATION OF CERTAIN CONDITIONS IMPOSED BY THE PLANNING COMMISSION FOR THE USE OF COMMERCIAL ANTENNAE WITHIN A RESIDENTIAL ZONE. (Applicant/Appellant: Schmitz & Associates representing James A. Kay, Jr. the owner of the property at 26708 Indian Peak Road)

Staff Coordinator: Kit Fox, aicp, Senior Planner

RECOMMENDATION

Adopt Resolution No. 2002-__, thereby modifying certain conditions as recommended by Staff, denying the appeal, and conditionally approving Conditional Use Permit No. 230.

BACKGROUND

This matter was continued from the City Council meeting of February 19, 2002, at the appellant’s request. The Staff report presented at the February 19th meeting, which details the background for this application as well as Staff’s discussion of the merits of the appeal, is attached to this report. On February 19th the appellant also submitted an appeal brief, which was not analyzed in the previous Staff report but is discussed in this Staff report. In addition, an updated version of the draft resolution for this project is attached to this report.

DISCUSSION

Staff has reviewed the appellant’s appeal brief, which is attached to this report. Staff would like to take this opportunity to correct or clarify a couple of points in the "Statement of Facts":

  1. On page 3 of the appeal brief, the appellant states that the City issued a notice of violation in 1997 for commercial use of the rooftop antennae. Actually, the violation was the non-permitted use of non-commercial antennae that were located on the roof, which required a permit from the City. At that time, the City was not aware of any commercial use of antennae on the site. The appellant also states that he applied for a conditional use permit (CUP) in 1998 to address this violation, when in fact, he applied for site plan review to legalize the existing antennae for only non-commercial use.

  2. On page 4 of the appeal brief, the appellant claims that the City had a technician monitor frequencies from the subject property and filed a complaint against Mr. Kay because the City believed that the antennae located on the roof of the structure were being used to broadcast on commercial frequencies. However, under Section 17.76.020(A) of the Municipal Code, it does not matter where antennae are located on a property; if they are used for commercial purposes, a conditional use permit is required to be obtained from the City. Thus, it was the appellant—not the City—who was drawing a distinction concerning which antennae at the property were being used for commercial purposes.

  3. On page 5 of the appeal brief, the appellant claims that the existing roof-mounted antenna array has only been "reconfigured," and that it is "no different than the configuration approved by the City on July 7, 1999, except that there are more vertical antenna elements, all under the height restrictions." Staff strongly disagrees that the current antenna assembly even remotely resembles the assembly as it appeared in 1999. At least a dozen additional vertical elements have been added to the array while the application for a CUP for commercial use has been pending before the City. In addition, also while the application was pending, workers were observed in the second floor of the house installing antennae in the upstairs bedroom. Now, the appellant asserts at page 5 of the brief, that those antennae and any others that were located in the interior of the residence, which allegedly were to be used for commercial purposes, have been removed. This leaves only the exterior antennae to be used for commercial purposes. Accordingly, Staff does not believe that the additional antennae and support structures that were installed on the roof of the residence while this application was pending were to be used for amateur purposes, especially since the City has no information—other than the appellant’s assertions—that these additional vertical elements were to be used for non-commercial transmissions. As such, Staff does not believe that the appellant can reasonably claim that the antenna assembly—as it exists today—is exempt from City regulation.

Page 8 of the appeal brief discusses the specific findings and/or conditions contested by the appellant. These include:

  1. The determination that additional vertical antenna supports and elements added to the roof-mounted antennae assembly since June 21, 2001, are not included within the scope of the permit and must be removed;

  2. The determination that only two (2) vertical elements and two (2) television antennae be allowed to remain on the roof, with all other antennae to be relocated inside the house and no further modifications to the roof-mounted antenna assembly allowed without City approval; and,

  3. The requirement for the house to be occupied.

With respect to the first two bases for the appeal, the appellant relies heavily upon the recent decision in the Abrams v. Rancho Palos Verdes case. However, the City Council has not yet decided whether to appeal this decision, and, if appealed, it is possible that this decision could be overturned. Although the Abrams case illustrates some of the uncertainties facing cities in applying the Telecommunications Act, and those uncertainties are factors that the City Council should consider, the Abrams case is not binding legal precedent, and any contention that the Abrams decision compels any particular result on this application is both wrong and premature.

Moreover, these facts are different from the facts that were before the District Court in the Abrams case. In Abrams, the antenna support structure had been in place for a number of years. Although Mr. Abrams did apply for approval to add another antenna support structure at his property (which subsequently was approved, appealed and then voided by the enactment of new antenna regulations by the City), and for a time, he parked a portable antenna at his home, he has not added new radiating elements to the existing antenna support structure. This is very different from this applicant, who has more than doubled the number of radiating elements that are attached to the roof-mounted antenna support structure, and who added them while this application was pending.

As to the second contention, given the provisions of the urgency ordinance that recently was adopted by the City Council, which applies to antennae that were added to a building-mounted structure after June 1, 2001, Staff recommends that the Commission’s decision be modified to allow the configuration of the exterior antenna support structure that existed at the property prior to June 1, 2001, to remain at the site, that those antennae be allowed to be used either for commercial or noncommercial use, that all of the other antennae and radiating elements that have been added to the roof-mounted antenna support structure be removed, and that any new antennae and support structures must be located on the interior of the property, regardless of whether they are to be used commercially or for amateur purposes. This is a diversion from the action taken by the Planning Commission, which required all but two (2) of the vertical antenna elements and two (2) television antennae to be removed from the roof-mounted support structure. If the City Council prefers to apply the more restrictive conditions adopted by the Planning Commission, an alternate draft Resolution has also been provided for the City Council’s consideration.

Finally, with respect to the third basis for appeal, the appellant concedes that he has agreed to conditions regarding improvements to the exterior appearance of the residence. In fact, these conditions, including the requirement that the property be occupied, were suggested to the Planning Commission by the appellant’s representatives. For many years, the property was kept in a very dilapidated condition while the antennae were in use and there were no renovations underway. With the antennae generating revenue for the appellant, there was no motivation to occupy or improve the property and it fell further into disrepair. The purpose in requiring the residence to be occupied is to ensure the continued use of the property primarily for residential purposes and the maintenance of the residence and the property to the standards of the surrounding neighborhood. Staff believes that the condition requiring occupancy of the house reasonably furthers a legitimate interest of the City in maintaining the quality of its residential neighborhoods. In addition, Staff believes that this condition should be further amended to ensure the continued maintenance of the property if the residence is not maintained appropriately by the occupant (additional text underlined):

    1. Within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application, the property shall be occupied by the owner, or some other person chosen by the owner, as that person’s primary residence. The necessary improvements to make the house habitable shall be completed within the initial 90-day period—including a functional kitchen, toilet and bathing facilities and utility connections for gas, electricity, water and sewer—and shall be maintained continuously. The applicant shall contract with a landscape and maintenance service to provide weekly service at the property to ensure that the structure and grounds are maintained free from litter, debris, and overgrown vegetation so as not to become an eyesore, if the resident is not maintaining the property as required by these conditions of approval and by the City’s Municipal Code.

CONCLUSION

Based upon the foregoing discussion in this and the February 19th Staff report, Staff recommends that the City Council adopt Resolution No. 2002__, modifying certain conditions of approval as recommended by Staff, denying the appeal, and conditionally approving Conditional Use Permit No. 230.

ALTERNATIVES

The following alternatives, in addition to Staff’s recommendation, are available for the Council’s consideration:

1. Grant the appeal as requested by the applicant;

2. Grant a portion of the applicant’s appeal; or,

3. Deny the appeal, upholding the Planning Commission decision with no modifications to the conditions of approval.

Respectfully submitted:
Joel Rojas, AICP, Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement

Reviewed by:
Les Evans, City Manager

Attachments:
Draft Resolution No. 2002-__
Alternate draft Resolution No. 2002-__
Applicant’s continuance request and appeal brief (dated February 19, 2002)
City Council Staff report of February 19, 2002


RESOLUTION NO. 2002-__

A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES APPROVING CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 230, THEREBY APPROVING THE COMMERCIAL USE OF CERTAIN ANTENNAE AND RELATED SUPPORT STRUCTURES AND EQUIPMENT ON THE SITE OF A SINGLE-FAMILY RESIDENCE, LOCATED AT 26708 INDIAN PEAK ROAD, IN THE GRANDVIEW COMMUNITY

WHEREAS, on October 22, 1998, the applicant, James A. Kay, Jr., received approval of an application for Site Plan Review No. 8334 for after-the fact approval of an existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array for non-commercial radio communications, which was conditioned expressly to exclude commercial operations; and,

WHEREAS, on November 4, 1998, prior to the expiration of the 15-day appeal period for Site Plan Review No. 8334, the City Council adopted Urgency Ordinance No. 341U, which established a moratorium on the processing of all antenna applications, including those applications upon which the City had acted but for which the appeal period had not yet expired; and,

WHEREAS, on April 16, 1999, the antenna moratorium was lifted, the City’s approval of Site Plan Review No. 8334 was voided, and the existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array were determined by Staff to be exempt from City permits for non-commercial use pursuant to Section 17.76.020(C)(3)(c)(ii) of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code; and,

WHEREAS, on October 15, 1999, Mr. Kay submitted an application for Site Plan Review No. 8736 to the Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement for a 198-square-foot single-story storage room addition to the rear side of the house, which proposed a large number of electrical outlets, the installation of two dedicated air conditioning condensers for the room and no interior access to the rest of the house; and although Staff suspected that the addition was intended to house commercial radio transmitters, the City did not withhold approval of Site Plan Review No. 8736 based upon these suspicions; and,

WHEREAS, Staff subsequently reviewed Federal Communications Commission (FCC) licensing records and found that several active and pending commercial radio frequencies were licensed to Mr. Kay’s property on Indian Peak Road, and turned this FCC licensing information over to the City Attorney’s office; and,

WHEREAS, the City obtained warrants from the court and retained an expert in the field of radio transmissions, Dr. Henry Richter, to monitor transmissions from the site in connection with an investigation of the alleged commercial use of the existing antennae and found that commercial frequencies were in use at the site. Subsequently, on April 13, 2000, the City filed a complaint for preliminary and permanent injunction against Mr. Kay to prevent the non-permitted use of commercial antennae on the site, and this case currently is pending; and,

WHEREAS, Section 17.76.020(A) of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code requires an individual to obtain a conditional use permit to install or operate a commercial antenna within the City of Rancho Palos Verdes. Section 17.96.090 of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code further defines the term "commercial antenna" as follows:

"’Commercial Antenna’ means all antennas, parabolic dishes, relay towers and antenna support structures used for the transmission or reception of radio, television and communication signals for commercial purposes. For the purpose of this definition, ‘commercial purposes’ shall mean communications for hire or material compensation, or the use of commercial frequencies, as these terms are defined by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). ‘Commercial antennas’ shall not include antennas owned or operated by governmental agencies; and micro-cell cellular antennas, owned and operated by state licensed cellular telephone utility companies, located on existing utility poles within the public right-of-way."

Under these provisions of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code, the applicant, Mr. Kay, was required to obtain a conditional use permit from the City to use his existing antennae and antenna support structure to broadcast on frequencies, deemed commercial by the FCC; and,

WHEREAS, on June 21, 2001, Mr. Kay submitted applications for Conditional Use Permit No. 230 and Environmental Assessment No. 744 for after-the-fact approval to establish the existing antennae and related support structures and equipment on the site for commercial use, although Mr. Kay contested that the application was after-the-fact and requested a waiver of the penalty fee; and,

WHEREAS, on September 4, 2001 and September 18, 2001, the City Council considered Mr. Kay’s request for a waiver of the penalty fee for Conditional Use Permit No. 230, and denied the request based upon inability to make the fee waiver findings set forth in Section 17.78.010(B) of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code; and,

WHEREAS, on September 19, 2001, the applications for Conditional Use Permit No. 230 and Environmental Assessment No. 744 were deemed complete by Staff; and,

WHEREAS, pursuant to the provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act, Public Resources Code Sections 21000 et seq. ("CEQA"), the State's CEQA Guidelines, California Code of Regulations, Title 14, Section 15000 et. seq., the City's Local CEQA Guidelines, and Government Code Section 65962.5(f) (Hazardous Waste and Substances Statement), Staff found no evidence that Conditional Use Permit No. 230 and Environmental Assessment No. 744 would have a significant effect on the environment and, therefore, the proposed project was determined by Staff to be categorically exempt (Class 1, Section 15301); and,

WHEREAS, after the submittal of these applications on June 21, 2001,and while the Planning Commission was conducting the public hearings on this application, the applicant installed at least eleven (11) additional vertical antenna masts with attached antennae onto the previously existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array, including additional cables and conduits for the additional antennae; and on November 8, 2001, the applicant submitted revised plans to the City depicting a total of twenty (20) vertical antenna masts with attached antennae on the roof-mounted antenna support structure and array; and,

WHEREAS, after notice issued pursuant to the requirements of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code, the Planning Commission held a duly noticed public hearing on October 23, 2001, November 13, 2001, and November 15, 2001, at which time all interested parties were given an opportunity to be heard and present evidence; and,

WHEREAS, the applicant’s representative, Mr. Miner, testified that all of the antennae that currently are located at the subject property could be used either for commercial or non-commercial transmissions; and,

WHEREAS, the applicant’s representative, Mr. Schmitz, during the public hearing, stated that the applicant would be willing to comply with conditions that would improve the appearance of the property, such as painting the residence and planting landscaping, and having someone live at the residence, to ensure that the residence is in keeping with the residential character of the neighborhood and to establish the proposed commercial use as being clearly ancillary to the principal residential use of the property, so that the Commission could make a finding of consistency of the proposed commercial use with the City’s General Plan; and,

WHEREAS, the Planning Commission, on November 15, 2001, adopted P.C. Resolution No. 2001-43 conditionally approving the project; and,

WHEREAS, the Applicant timely appealed conditional approval by letter dated November 28, 2001, based on disagreement with "all conditions regulating the location, number and placement of antennas on the project site…."

NOW, THEREFORE, THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES DOES HEREBY FIND, DETERMINE, AND RESOLVE AS FOLLOWS:

Section 1: The City Council hereby makes the following findings of fact with respect to the application for Conditional Use Permit No. 230 to legalize the use of existing roof-mounted and interior antennae and related support structures and equipment on the site for commercial purposes:

A. For the purposes of this determination on the subject application and throughout this Resolution, the terms and phrases "existing antenna(e)" and "existing roof-mounted antenna array" refer only to the antenna(e) and antenna array depicted in the plans submitted to the City by the applicant on June 21, 2001, and in photographs accompanying the application for Conditional Use Permit No. 230 and Environmental Assessment No. 744. The terms and phrases "existing antenna(e)" and "existing roof-mounted antenna array" do not include any parts, elements, components or other features of the antenna(e) and antenna array that are not depicted on the plan submitted on June 21, 2001, or in the above-mentioned photographs, regardless whether these parts, elements, components or other features were, or are, physically present on the subject property as of the effective date of this Resolution.

B. The site is adequate in size and shape to accommodate the proposed use and for all of the yards, setbacks, walls, fences, landscaping and other features required by the Development Code or by conditions imposed to integrate said use with those on adjacent land and within the neighborhood because, as conditioned, the proposed project complies with the development standards for commercial antennae, as specified in RPVDC Sections 17.76.020(A)(2) through (A)(10). The site provides for two (2) off-street parking spaces for maintenance and service vehicles and the existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array does not require special markings or lighting to comply with Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requirements. Although there is existing foliage on adjacent properties and rights-of-way, this foliage does not adequately screen any antenna support structures or antennae on the roof of the structure from view from many surrounding residences in the neighborhood and from nearby public rights-of-way, especially those residences located directly across the street and the residences located down slope from the rear yard on Fond du Lac Road. As such, the approval of this application is only for the existing antennae and existing roof-mounted antenna array, conditioned upon the removal of all parts, elements, components and other features of the antennae and antenna array that were added by the applicant since June 21, 2001, and the relocation of all of these additional parts, elements, components or other features of the antennae and antenna array and related support structures and equipment to the inside of the house. This condition is necessary to maintain the appearance of the structure as a single-family residence, and to integrate the commercial use into the residential neighborhood. In this case, the imposition of stricter limitations upon both commercial and non-commercial antennae than are otherwise required by the City’s Development Code is necessary to protect the aesthetics of the neighborhood.

C. The site for the proposed use relates to streets and highways sufficient to carry the type and quantity of traffic generated by the subject use because the subject property is served by Indian Peak Road, which is a public residential street. Aside from normal residential traffic associated with the existing house, the only additional traffic expected to result from the proposed project is an occasional service vehicle, and would rarely involve large trucks or other equipment that could adversely affect local traffic for any extended period of time. Any adverse effects of any additional traffic are mitigated by the conditions of approval imposed by this approval.

D. In approving the subject use at the specific location, there will be no significant adverse effects on adjacent property or the permitted use thereof, due to the conditions that are being imposed as part of this approval. Although service personnel would visit the site periodically, any impacts related to the maintenance and operation of the existing antennae would be very minor and have no significant adverse effects on surrounding properties. The existing antennae are visible from homes across Indian Peak Road and from Fond du Lac Road below. Since the conversion of the existing antennae to commercial use constitutes an intensification of the use that benefits the applicant financially but, as proposed by the applicant, does not offset the visual impacts of the antenna array upon the surrounding neighborhood, the approval of this proposal is only for the existing antennae and existing roof-mounted antenna array, conditioned upon the removal of all parts, elements, components and other features of the antennae and antenna array that were added by the applicant since June 21, 2001; the painting of the remaining roof-mounted antennae and support structures that are permitted by this conditional use permit so as to blend better into the background sky; and the relocation of all of the additional parts, elements, components or other features of the antennae and antenna array and related support structures and equipment to the inside of the house. In addition, no future changes to the location or configuration or which increase the number or the height of any approved antennae or element of the remaining roof-mounted antenna array will be permitted without an amendment to this conditional use permit that is approved by the Planning Commission, and any new antennae and support structures must be placed inside of the house to screen the antennae and to prevent further visual intrusion upon the surrounding neighborhood.

E. Any issues related to interference impacts upon electronic and other types of equipment, and actual or perceived effects upon human health, are strictly within the purview of the FCC, since Telecommunications Act of 1996 prohibits the City from "[regulating] the placement, construction, and modification of personal wireless service facilities on the basis of the environmental effects of radio frequency emissions to the extent that such facilities comply with the [FCC’s] regulations concerning such emissions."

F. The proposed use—as conditioned—is not contrary to the General Plan. The subject property and the Grandview neighborhood are designated Residential, 4-6 DU/acre, which is a land use designation intended to accommodate medium-density neighborhoods of detached, single-family homes and related accessory uses and structures. No evidence has been provided that the owner has ever resided at the existing home, and this property has not been occupied for at least the past three and one-half years. The evidence demonstrates that the property has not been maintained in a manner consistent with the quality of the surrounding neighborhood, and the residential character of the neighborhood has been eroded by the increasing deterioration and commercialization of this site. To prevent the proposed commercial use of the property from exacerbating the substandard condition of the residence, and to ensure that the proposed use is consistent with the General Plan, the approval of the proposed project includes conditions to address these deficiencies. The conditions include: 1) requiring contract landscape and maintenance services in the event that the home not properly maintained in conformance with the conditions; and 2) requiring the removal of all of the additional parts, elements, components or other features of the antennae and antenna array that were added by the applicant since June 21, 2001. These conditions will allow for the provision of wireless telecommunications services at this location, while minimizing the visual and aesthetic impacts of this commercial wireless operation on the surrounding residential neighborhood.

G. The required finding that, if the site of the proposed use is within any of the overlay control districts established by RPVDC Chapter 17.40 (Overlay Control Districts), the proposed use complies with all applicable requirements of that chapter, is not applicable because the subject property is not located within any of the overlay control districts established by RPVDC Chapter 17.40.

H. Conditions of approval, which the City Council finds to be necessary to protect the health, safety and general welfare, have been imposed and include (but are not limited to) removal of all parts, elements, components and other features of the antennae and antenna array that were added by the applicant since June 21, 2001; painting the remaining roof-mounted antennae and masts, and prohibiting any further modifications to them without first obtaining approval of modification to this conditional use permit; requiring all other existing and any future antennae to be located inside of the house; limiting regular maintenance hours to 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday; requiring the property to be landscaped and painted and that weekly landscape and general maintenance services shall be provided by contract with a qualified provider of such services if the residence is not properly maintained in accordance with the conditions; requiring the applicant to obtain and maintain a valid business license; and reviewing the project for compliance with all conditions of approval within six (6) months of the date of the City’s final action on the application. These conditions are imposed through the City’s authority over placement, construction and modification of personal wireless service facilities, as expressly reserved to local government under the Telecommunications Act of 1996.

I. The required findings that no existing or planned tower can accommodate the applicant's proposed antenna or proposed service area, or that the proposed tower cannot be located on the site of an existing or planned tower, are not applicable because the proposed project does not involve the construction or placement of a new antenna tower, and there is no antenna tower currently located on the subject property.

J. By permitting some of the existing antennae to remain on the roof of the residence, and by permitting commercial antennae to be located in the interior of the residence, personal wireless services to the surrounding community are not prohibited. Based on testimony by the applicant’s representative which demonstrates that antennae used for commercial radio transmissions from 1998 to the present are installed in the interior of the house and that those antennae functioned so as to provide personal wireless services, the City finds that requiring some of the antennae to be located within the house does not have the effect of prohibiting personal wireless services.

Section 2: The City Council finds that the proposed project—as conditioned—qualifies for a Class 1 categorical exemption from the provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) under Section 15301. The exemption applies to alterations to existing minor structures and uses "involving negligible or no expansion of use beyond that existing at the time of the lead agency’s determination." As conditioned, the existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array would be modified so that most of the antennae are removed and relocated to the inside of the house, and the negative aesthetic impacts of the existing antennae are minimized. Without the imposition of this condition, and if the antennae and other elements that have been added to the property since the submittal of the application to the City were to remain in place, the City Council would not be able to find this proposed project exempt from the requirements of CEQA, due to aesthetic impacts which could be potentially significant and thus would require further analysis pursuant to the requirements of CEQA.

Section 3: The City Council finds that the approval of Conditional Use Permit No. 230—as conditioned—is consistent with the City’s Wireless Communications Antenna Development Guidelines. This application was heard by the Planning Commission within the time lines established by the State’s Permit Streamlining Act and CEQA (Guideline No. 1). Although the Guidelines express a preference for existing, non-single-family structures as antenna sites (Guideline No. 2), installations on single-family residences are not prohibited and have been approved previously elsewhere in the City. In addition, the conditions of approval for this project will help to enhance the residential character of the neighborhood by requiring the applicant to upgrade the appearance and maintenance of the property. As a condition of approval, all of the exterior antennae added since June 21, 2001 will be removed, so the project will have no significant impact upon any view corridors (Guideline No. 4). The removal of these antennae will also serve to balance the aesthetic impacts of the antennae upon the neighborhood with the applicant’s financial benefit from the operation of the commercial antennae on the site (Guideline No. 5). Finally, with most of the antennae relocated to the inside of the house, they will be effectively screened from view from adjacent properties or rights-of-way (Guideline No. 9).

Section 4: The City Council finds that the approval of Conditional Use Permit No. 230—as conditioned—is consistent with the local zoning authority reserved to the City of Rancho Palos Verdes by the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (47 U.S.C. 332(c)(7)) for the following reasons:

  1. The conditional approval of Conditional Use Permit No. 230 "[does] not unreasonably discriminate among providers of functionally equivalent services…and [does] not prohibit or have the effect of prohibiting the provision of personal wireless services" (47 U.S.C. 332(c)(7), subsections (B)(i)(I) and (II)). In reviewing all of the applications to provide personal wireless services on other residentially-zoned property within the City, the City has applied consistently its regulations to these facilities so as to approve facilities that are compatible with surrounding uses and to modify or deny applications that do or will have adverse visual, aesthetic or other impacts upon surrounding properties. The instant application is being approved with conditions requiring the removal of most of the exterior antennae because it will otherwise result in adverse visual and aesthetic impacts upon adjacent properties. The City’s conditional approval of this specific proposal does not prohibit the applicant from providing wireless communications services because the applicant still has the ability to provide these services from the remaining exterior antennae and/or the antennae to be relocated inside the second story of the house. The applicant has admitted that he has transmitted commercially from the site, using the existing antennae located inside the house since 1998. The City has previously approved applications for commercial antennae for a variety of commercial wireless services and service providers, including applications for properties that were zoned or used for single-family residential purposes. Accordingly, the conditional approval of this particular application also does not result in a ban or prohibition of, or have the effect of prohibiting, the placement of these types of facilities within the City of Rancho Palos Verdes.
  2. The application for Conditional Use Permit No. 230 was deemed complete by City Staff on September 19, 2001. The City has acted on the applicant’s request for Conditional Use Permit No. 230 "within a reasonable period of time after the request [was] duly filed with [the City], taking into account the nature and scope of such request" (47 U.S.C. 332(c)(7), subsection (B)(ii)). This application has been processed by the City in a timely fashion and in accordance with the time lines established by the State Permit Streamlining Act and CEQA, and the Telecommunications Act. The only delays in the processing of this application are attributable to the applicant’s request for a waiver of the penalty fee (which was denied by the City Council on September 18, 2001) and the applicant’s request for a continuance of this application from the Planning Commission meeting of October 23, 2001 to the meeting of November 13, 2001, and the applicant’s appeal of the Planning Commission’s conditional approval and request for continuance of the appeal from the City Council meeting of February 19, 2002 to the meeting of March 19, 2002.

  3. In conditionally approving the application for Conditional Use Permit No. 230, the City has not "[regulated] the placement, construction, and modification of personal wireless service facilities on the basis of the environmental effects of radio frequency emissions to the extent that such facilities comply with the [Federal Communications] Commission's regulations concerning such emissions" (47 U.S.C. 332(c)(7), subsection (B)(iv)). Although interference and radio frequency emissions were raised as issues of concern to surrounding residents at the public hearing and in correspondence to the City, none of the required modifications to the existing antennae on the site are in response to these concerns. Instead, these modifications are imposed only to address the aesthetic impacts of the antennae upon the surrounding neighborhood. City Staff advised the Planning Commission and the City Council that neither body could consider any environmental effects of emissions that comply with FCC regulations, including purported impacts upon health or alleged interference with television reception. The Planning Commission and City Council relied upon that advice and the provisions of the Act and, therefore, has not based its decision to conditionally approve the proposed project in any respect upon any actual or perceived environmental effects attributable to radio frequency emissions. Rather, the conditional approval regulates the aesthetic impacts and land use compatibility issues traditionally addressed through the exercise of local governmental police powers.

Section 5: The applicant’s appeal of the conditions of approval imposed by the Planning Commission is denied. However, modifications to the conditions entitle the applicant to a refund of one-half of the appeal fee pursuant to Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code Section 17.80.120.

Section 6: The time within which the judicial review of the decision reflected in this Resolution, if available, must be sought is governed by Section 1094.6 of the California Code of Civil Procedure and other applicable short periods of limitation. Pursuant to the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (47 U.S.C. 332(c)(7)(B)(v)), any person adversely affected by the City’s final action in this matter may, within thirty (30) days after such action, commence an action in any court of competent jurisdiction.

Section 7: For the foregoing reasons and based on the information and findings included in the Staff Report, the testimony and evidence presented at the public hearings before the Planning Commission and the City Council, the Minutes and the other records of this proceeding on file with the City, the City Council of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes hereby approves Conditional Use Permit No. 230, thereby approving the commercial use of certain antennae and related support structures and equipment on the site of a single-family residence, located at 26708 Indian Peak Road, in the Grandview community, subject to the conditions contained in Exhibit 'A', attached hereto and made a part hereof by this reference, which are necessary to protect the public health, safety and welfare.

PASSED, APPROVED, AND ADOPTED this 19th day of March 2002.


_______________________

John McTaggart, Mayor

ATTEST:


____________________
Jo Purcell, City Clerk

State of California)
County of Los Angeles) ss
City of Rancho Palos Verdes)

I, JO PURCELL, City Clerk of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes, hereby certify that the above Resolution No. 2002-____ was duly and regularly passed and adopted by the said City Council at a regular meeting thereof held on March 19, 2002.


_________________________________
City Clerk


EXHIBIT 'A'
CONDITIONS OF APPROVAL
FOR CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 230
(26708 Indian Peak Road)

1. Within ninety (90) days following adoption of this Resolution, the applicant and the property owner shall submit to the City a statement, in writing, that they have read, understand, and agree to all conditions of approval contained in this Resolution. Failure to provide said written statement shall render this approval null and void.

2. This approval is for the use of antennae and related support structures and equipment on the site of a single-family residence in the Grandview community for commercial purposes. The commercial use of the property is conditioned upon the following modifications, as depicted in the plans submitted to the City on June 21, 2001 by the applicant:

    1. The roof-mounted equipment shall consist of a maximum of five vertical masts, each of which shall not exceed eight and one-half (8 ½) feet in height, as measured from the point where the mast meets the roof surface.

    2. Each of the five masts may have up to four (4) antennae affixed thereon, similar to those that currently are present at the site, provided that they do not extend any higher than the mast itself and that each antenna or radiating element does not project more than two feet horizontally from the center of the mast.
    3. In addition, the two (2) existing television antennae also may remain on the roof of the residence, so long as they do not exceed eight and one-half (8 ½) feet in height, as measured from the point where they are attached to the roof surface; that the horizontal boom of each antenna does not exceed six feet in length; that no radiating element or antenna attached to the boom exceeds two feet in length, and that all of the antennae and support structures on the property are maintained in compliance with the Municipal Code.
    4. The Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement shall review the exterior masts and antennae to ensure compliance with this condition. Any additional antennae, masts or other antenna support structure(s) shall be placed inside of the house and, provided that they are completely located inside of the house, they shall not require further approval or modification of this conditional use permit.
    5. The exterior masts and antennae described in this condition may be used for either commercial or non-commercial purposes.

      The Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement is authorized to make only minor modifications to the approved plans and any of the conditions of approval, and only if such modifications will achieve substantially the same results as would strict compliance with the approved plans and conditions. Otherwise, any substantive change, such as the enlargement, expansion or addition to, the five exterior masts and antennae that this approval allows outside of the existing residential structure shall require approval of a revision to Conditional Use Permit No. 230 by the City Council and shall require a new and separate environmental review.

3. All project development on the site shall conform to the specific standards contained in these conditions of approval or, if not addressed herein, in the RS-5 district development standards of the City's Municipal Code.

4. Failure to comply with and adhere to any or all of these conditions of approval may be cause to revoke the approval of the project by the City Council after conducting a duly noticed public hearing on the matter.

5. If the necessary modifications to site, the house and the existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array, as specified by these conditions of approval, have not been made within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application, approval of the project shall expire and be of no further effect unless, prior to expiration, a written request for extension is filed with the Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement and approved by the City Council.

6. In the event that any of these conditions conflict with the recommendations and/or requirements of another permitting agency or City department, the stricter standard shall apply.

7. The applicant shall submit a plan depicting the roof-mounted masts and antennae that may be retained or erected pursuant to this approval, within (90) ninety days of the date of the City’s final action on this application. The applicant shall obtain a building permit and any other approval required by the Building Code to modify or construct the masts and attached antennae on the property.

8. Unless otherwise modified by these conditions, all conditions of approval for Site Plan Review No. 8736—for the 198-square-foot storage room addition—and Minor Exception Permit No. 555—for a front-yard fence in excess of the 42-inch height limit—remain in full force and effect.

9. Pursuant to Section 17.76.020(A)(4)(c) of the City's Municipal Code, the applicant/landowner shall agree, in writing, to cooperate in possible future co-location of additional wireless communications facilities inside the structure on this site. Under the terms of this agreement, the applicant/landowner shall be obligated to:

a. Respond in a timely, comprehensive manner to a request for information from a potential shared-use applicant; and

b. Negotiate in good faith for shared use by third parties.

10. The roof-mounted antennae and masts that are hereby approved shall be painted a color that helps to camouflage them against the background sky. The color shall be approved by the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement before the antenna support structure and array are painted. Painting shall be completed and inspected by the Director within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application.

11. The five roof-mounted masts and the two television antennae approved by this resolution shall not be increased or expanded without the advance approval of the Planning Commission, including, but not limited to, any additional antennae, masts, antennae support structures, antenna assemblies or radiating elements of any kind. Existing masts and antennae that are permitted by this approval may be removed and replaced for maintenance and/or repair as long as the replacement masts or antennae are the same or less in height, length and mass and in the same location as the approved masts and antennae, and provided that the total number of masts and antennae is not increased.

12. Notwithstanding Condition No. 11 above, within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application, the applicant shall remove all existing additional masts, antennae, horizontal support structure(s), pipes, ducts and other components of the roof-mounted antenna assembly that are not expressly approved by this Resolution. Any other antennae and antenna support structures either shall be removed or relocated inside the house.

13. Except in case of emergency, regular maintenance of the antennae and related support equipment and structures shall only occur between the hours of 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday.

14. All service vehicles related to the maintenance of the antennae shall be parked off-street in the driveway or garage of the house. No more than two (2) service vehicles are allowed on the site at any time.

15. Any new antennae and related support equipment and structures shall be located inside of the house. No new exterior building-mounted antennae or support structures will be allowed without approval of a modification to this conditional use permit by the City Council.

16. The support equipment for the antennae on the site, including air conditioning units, shall not generate noise levels in excess of 65 dBA, as measured at the property line of the subject property. Any sound attenuation measures to achieve this standard shall be the responsibility of the applicant, and shall be subject to the review and approval of the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement.

17. The operation of the antennae on the site shall at all times comply with the requirements, standards and regulations of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

18. Within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application, the exterior appearance of the house and site shall be brought into consistency with neighborhood standards by:

    1. Painting the exterior of the house and garage and maintaining the exterior of the building so that the paint is not peeling or cracking in a manner detrimental to the value of the property and neighboring properties, to the satisfaction of the Director; and,
    2. Landscaping the front yard area, and maintaining the landscaping in a neat and thriving condition to the satisfaction of the Director.

19. Within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application, the property shall be occupied by the owner, or some other person chosen by the owner, as that person’s primary residence. The necessary improvements to make the house habitable shall be completed within the initial 90-day period—including a functional kitchen, toilet and bathing facilities and utility connections for gas, electricity, water and sewer—and shall be maintained continuously. The applicant shall contract with a landscape and maintenance service to provide weekly service at the property to ensure that the structure and grounds are maintained free from litter, debris, and overgrown vegetation so as not to become an eyesore, if the resident is not maintaining the property as required by these conditions of approval and by the City’s Municipal Code.

20. Within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application, the house shall be equipped with smoke alarms and fire extinguishers, including those areas where the commercial power supplies, transmitters and other related equipment are kept.

21. Within ninety (90) days of the City’s final action on this application, the applicant shall obtain a business license from the City. A valid City business license shall be maintained at all times while commercial radio transmissions occur from the property.

22. At approximately six (6) months from the date of the City’s final action on this application, the Planning Commission shall review the project for conformance with the conditions of approval, and determine if any conditions of approval need to be added, deleted or modified, or if the permit should be revoked. Within the initial 6-month permit period, the applicant shall be responsible for completing all of the site and use modifications described in this Resolution. Failure to fulfill these conditions may lead to the revocation of this permit during the 6-month review process by the Planning Commission.


[Draft Resolution]

RESOLUTION NO. 2002-__

A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES APPROVING CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 230, THEREBY APPROVING THE COMMERCIAL USE OF CERTAIN ANTENNAE AND RELATED SUPPORT STRUCTURES AND EQUIPMENT ON THE SITE OF A SINGLE-FAMILY RESIDENCE, LOCATED AT 26708 INDIAN PEAK ROAD, IN THE GRANDVIEW COMMUNITY

WHEREAS, on October 22, 1998, the applicant, James A. Kay, Jr., received approval of an application for Site Plan Review No. 8334 for after-the fact approval of an existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array for non-commercial radio communications, which was conditioned expressly to exclude commercial operations; and,

WHEREAS, on November 4, 1998, prior to the expiration of the 15-day appeal period for Site Plan Review No. 8334, the City Council adopted Urgency Ordinance No. 341U, which established a moratorium on the processing of all antenna applications, including those applications upon which the City had acted but for which the appeal period had not yet expired; and,

WHEREAS, on April 16, 1999, the antenna moratorium was lifted, the City’s approval of Site Plan Review No. 8334 was voided, and the existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array were determined by Staff to be exempt from City permits for non-commercial use pursuant to Section 17.76.020(C)(3)(c)(ii) of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code; and,

WHEREAS, on October 15, 1999, Mr. Kay submitted an application for Site Plan Review No. 8736 to the Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement for a 198-square-foot single-story storage room addition to the rear side of the house, which proposed a large number of electrical outlets, the installation of two dedicated air conditioning condensers for the room and no interior access to the rest of the house; and although Staff suspected that the addition was intended to house commercial radio transmitters, the City did not withhold approval of Site Plan Review No. 8736 based upon these suspicions; and,

WHEREAS, Staff subsequently reviewed Federal Communications Commission (FCC) licensing records and found that several active and pending commercial radio frequencies were licensed to Mr. Kay’s property on Indian Peak Road, and turned this FCC licensing information over to the City Attorney’s office; and,

WHEREAS, the City obtained warrants from the court and retained an expert in the field of radio transmissions, Dr. Henry Richter, to monitor transmissions from the site in connection with an investigation of the alleged commercial use of the existing antennae and found that commercial frequencies were in use at the site. Subsequently, on April 13, 2000, the City filed a complaint for preliminary and permanent injunction against Mr. Kay to prevent the non-permitted use of commercial antennae on the site, and this case currently is pending; and,

WHEREAS, Section 17.76.020(A) of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code requires an individual to obtain a conditional use permit to install or operate a commercial antenna within the City of Rancho Palos Verdes. Section 17.96.090 of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code further defines the term "commercial antenna" as follows:

"’Commercial Antenna’ means all antennas, parabolic dishes, relay towers and antenna support structures used for the transmission or reception of radio, television and communication signals for commercial purposes. For the purpose of this definition, ‘commercial purposes’ shall mean communications for hire or material compensation, or the use of commercial frequencies, as these terms are defined by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). ‘Commercial antennas’ shall not include antennas owned or operated by governmental agencies; and micro-cell cellular antennas, owned and operated by state licensed cellular telephone utility companies, located on existing utility poles within the public right-of-way."

Under these provisions of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code, the applicant, Mr. Kay, was required to obtain a conditional use permit from the City to use his existing antennae and antenna support structure to broadcast on frequencies, deemed commercial by the FCC; and,

WHEREAS, on June 21, 2001, Mr. Kay submitted applications for Conditional Use Permit No. 230 and Environmental Assessment No. 744 for after-the-fact approval to establish the existing antennae and related support structures and equipment on the site for commercial use, although Mr. Kay contested that the application was after-the-fact and requested a waiver of the penalty fee; and,

WHEREAS, on September 4, 2001 and September 18, 2001, the City Council considered Mr. Kay’s request for a waiver of the penalty fee for Conditional Use Permit No. 230, and denied the request based upon inability to make the fee waiver findings set forth in Section 17.78.010(B) of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code; and,

WHEREAS, on September 19, 2001, the applications for Conditional Use Permit No. 230 and Environmental Assessment No. 744 were deemed complete by Staff; and,

WHEREAS, pursuant to the provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act, Public Resources Code Sections 21000 et seq. ("CEQA"), the State's CEQA Guidelines, California Code of Regulations, Title 14, Section 15000 et. seq., the City's Local CEQA Guidelines, and Government Code Section 65962.5(f) (Hazardous Waste and Substances Statement), Staff found no evidence that Conditional Use Permit No. 230 and Environmental Assessment No. 744 would have a significant effect on the environment and, therefore, the proposed project was determined by Staff to be categorically exempt (Class 1, Section 15301); and,

WHEREAS, after the submittal of these applications on June 21, 2001,and while the Planning Commission was conducting the public hearings on this application, the applicant installed at least eleven (11) additional vertical antenna masts with attached antennae onto the previously existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array, including additional cables and conduits for the additional antennae; and on November 8, 2001, the applicant submitted revised plans to the City depicting a total of twenty (20) vertical antenna masts with attached antennae on the roof-mounted antenna support structure and array; and,

WHEREAS, after notice issued pursuant to the requirements of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code, the Planning Commission held a duly noticed public hearing on October 23, 2001, November 13, 2001, and November 15, 2001, at which time all interested parties were given an opportunity to be heard and present evidence; and,

WHEREAS, the applicant’s representative, Mr. Miner, testified that all of the antennae that currently are located at the subject property could be used either for commercial or non-commercial transmissions; and,

WHEREAS, the applicant’s representative, Mr. Schmitz, during the public hearing, stated that the applicant would be willing to comply with conditions that would improve the appearance of the property, such as painting the residence and planting landscaping, and having someone live at the residence, to ensure that the residence is in keeping with the residential character of the neighborhood and to establish the proposed commercial use as being clearly ancillary to the principal residential use of the property, so that the Commission could make a finding of consistency of the proposed commercial use with the City’s General Plan; and,

WHEREAS, the Planning Commission, on November 15, 2001, adopted P.C. Resolution No. 2001-43 conditionally approving the project; and,

WHEREAS, the Applicant timely appealed conditional approval by letter dated November 28, 2001, based on disagreement with "all conditions regulating the location, number and placement of antennas on the project site…."

NOW, THEREFORE, THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES DOES HEREBY FIND, DETERMINE, AND RESOLVE AS FOLLOWS:

Section 1: The City Council hereby makes the following findings of fact with respect to the application for Conditional Use Permit No. 230 to legalize the use of existing roof-mounted and interior antennae and related support structures and equipment on the site for commercial purposes:

A. For the purposes of this determination on the subject application and throughout this Resolution, the terms and phrases "existing antenna(e)" and "existing roof-mounted antenna array" refer only to the antenna(e) and antenna array depicted in the plans submitted to the City by the applicant on June 21, 2001, and in photographs accompanying the application for Conditional Use Permit No. 230 and Environmental Assessment No. 744. The terms and phrases "existing antenna(e)" and "existing roof-mounted antenna array" do not include any parts, elements, components or other features of the antenna(e) and antenna array that are not depicted on the plan submitted on June 21, 2001, or in the above-mentioned photographs, regardless whether these parts, elements, components or other features were, or are, physically present on the subject property as of the effective date of this Resolution.

B. The site is adequate in size and shape to accommodate the proposed use and for all of the yards, setbacks, walls, fences, landscaping and other features required by the Development Code or by conditions imposed to integrate said use with those on adjacent land and within the neighborhood because, as conditioned, the proposed project complies with the development standards for commercial antennae, as specified in RPVDC Sections 17.76.020(A)(2) through (A)(10). The site provides for two (2) off-street parking spaces for maintenance and service vehicles and the existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array does not require special markings or lighting to comply with Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requirements. Although there is existing foliage on adjacent properties and rights-of-way, this foliage does not adequately screen any antenna support structures or antennae on the roof of the structure from view from many surrounding residences in the neighborhood and from nearby public rights-of-way, especially those residences located directly across the street and the residences located down slope from the rear yard on Fond du Lac Road. As such, the approval of this application is conditioned to require the removal of all but two (2) of the existing eight-and-one-half-foot long masts and two of the television antennae from the roof of the residence, and the relocation of all of the other existing or proposed antennae and related support structures and equipment to the inside of the house. This condition is necessary to maintain the appearance of the structure as a single-family residence, and to integrate the commercial use into the residential neighborhood. In this case, the imposition of stricter limitations upon both commercial and non-commercial antennae than are otherwise required by the City’s Development Code is necessary to protect the aesthetics of the neighborhood.

C. The site for the proposed use relates to streets and highways sufficient to carry the type and quantity of traffic generated by the subject use because the subject property is served by Indian Peak Road, which is a public residential street. Aside from normal residential traffic associated with the existing house, the only additional traffic expected to result from the proposed project is an occasional service vehicle, and would rarely involve large trucks or other equipment that could adversely affect local traffic for any extended period of time. Any adverse effects of any additional traffic are mitigated by the conditions of approval imposed by this approval.

D. In approving the subject use at the specific location, there will be no significant adverse effects on adjacent property or the permitted use thereof, due to the conditions that are being imposed as part of this approval. Although service personnel would visit the site periodically, any impacts related to the maintenance and operation of the existing antennae would be very minor and have no significant adverse effects on surrounding properties. The existing antennae are visible from homes across Indian Peak Road and from Fond du Lac Road below. Since the conversion of the existing antennae to commercial use constitutes an intensification of the use that benefits the applicant financially but, as proposed by the applicant, does not offset the visual impacts of the antenna array upon the surrounding neighborhood, the approval of this proposal will be conditioned to require the removal of all but two (2) of the existing eight-and-one-half-foot-tall antennae masts and two (2) of the television antenna(e) from the roof of the structure, the painting of the remaining roof-mounted antennae and support structures that are permitted by this conditional use permit so as to blend better into the background sky, and the relocation of all of the other antennae and related support equipment to the inside of the house. In addition, no future changes to the location or configuration or which increase the number or the height of any approved antennae or element of the remaining roof-mounted antenna array will be permitted without an amendment to this conditional use permit that is approved by the Planning Commission, and any new antennae and support structures must be placed inside of the house to screen the antennae and to prevent further visual intrusion upon the surrounding neighborhood.

E. Any issues related to interference impacts upon electronic and other types of equipment, and actual or perceived effects upon human health, are strictly within the purview of the FCC, since Telecommunications Act of 1996 prohibits the City from "[regulating] the placement, construction, and modification of personal wireless service facilities on the basis of the environmental effects of radio frequency emissions to the extent that such facilities comply with the [FCC’s] regulations concerning such emissions."

F. The proposed use—as conditioned—is not contrary to the General Plan. The subject property and the Grandview neighborhood are designated Residential, 4-6 DU/acre, which is a land use designation intended to accommodate medium-density neighborhoods of detached, single-family homes and related accessory uses and structures. No evidence has been provided that the owner has ever resided at the existing home, and this property has not been occupied for at least the past three and one-half years. The evidence demonstrates that the property has not been maintained in a manner consistent with the quality of the surrounding neighborhood, and the residential character of the neighborhood has been eroded by the increasing deterioration and commercialization of this site. To prevent the proposed commercial use of the property from exacerbating the substandard condition of the residence, and to ensure that the proposed use is consistent with the General Plan, the approval of the proposed project includes conditions to address these deficiencies. The conditions include: 1) requiring contract landscape and maintenance services in the event that the home not properly maintained in conformance with the conditions; and 2) to require the removal of most of the visible exterior evidence of the commercial use of the property. These conditions will allow for the provision of wireless telecommunications services at this location, while minimizing the visual and aesthetic impacts of this commercial wireless operation on the surrounding residential neighborhood.

G. The required finding that, if the site of the proposed use is within any of the overlay control districts established by RPVDC Chapter 17.40 (Overlay Control Districts), the proposed use complies with all applicable requirements of that chapter, is not applicable because the subject property is not located within any of the overlay control districts established by RPVDC Chapter 17.40.

H. Conditions of approval, which the City Council finds to be necessary to protect the health, safety and general welfare, have been imposed and include (but are not limited to) removal of all but two (2) of the existing eight and one-half feet-long roof-mounted antenna masts and two of the television antenna(e), painting the remaining roof-mounted antennae and masts, and prohibiting any further modifications to them without first obtaining approval of modification to this conditional use permit; requiring all other existing and any future antennae to be located inside of the house; limiting regular maintenance hours to 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday; requiring the property to be landscaped and painted and that weekly landscape and general maintenance services shall be provided by contract with a qualified provider of such services if the residence is not properly maintained in accordance with the conditions; requiring the applicant to obtain and maintain a valid business license; and reviewing the project for compliance with all conditions of approval within six (6) months of the date of the City’s final action on the application. These conditions are imposed through the City’s authority over placement, construction and modification of personal wireless service facilities, as expressly reserved to local government under the Telecommunications Act of 1996.

I. The required findings that no existing or planned tower can accommodate the applicant's proposed antenna or proposed service area, or that the proposed tower cannot be located on the site of an existing or planned tower, are not applicable because the proposed project does not involve the construction or placement of a new antenna tower, and there is no antenna tower currently located on the subject property.

J. By permitting some of the existing antennae to remain on the roof of the residence, and by permitting commercial antennae to be located in the interior of the residence, personal wireless services to the surrounding community are not prohibited. Based on testimony by the applicant’s representative which demonstrates that antennae used for commercial radio transmissions from 1998 to the present are installed in the interior of the house and that those antennae functioned so as to provide personal wireless services, the City finds that requiring some of the antennae to be located within the house does not have the effect of prohibiting personal wireless services.

Section 2: The City Council finds that the proposed project—as conditioned—qualifies for a Class 1 categorical exemption from the provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) under Section 15301. The exemption applies to alterations to existing minor structures and uses "involving negligible or no expansion of use beyond that existing at the time of the lead agency’s determination." As conditioned, the existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array would be modified so that most of the antennae are removed and relocated to the inside of the house, and the negative aesthetic impacts of the existing antennae are minimized. Without the imposition of this condition, and if the antennae and other elements that have been added to the property since the submittal of the application to the City were to remain in place, the City Council would not be able to find this proposed project exempt from the requirements of CEQA, due to aesthetic impacts which could be potentially significant and thus would require further analysis pursuant to the requirements of CEQA.

Section 3: The City Council finds that the approval of Conditional Use Permit No. 230—as conditioned—is consistent with the City’s Wireless Communications Antenna Development Guidelines. This application was heard by the Planning Commission within the time lines established by the State’s Permit Streamlining Act and CEQA (Guideline No. 1). Although the Guidelines express a preference for existing, non-single-family structures as antenna sites (Guideline No. 2), installations on single-family residences are not prohibited and have been approved previously elsewhere in the City. In addition, the conditions of approval for this project will help to enhance the residential character of the neighborhood by requiring the applicant to upgrade the appearance and maintenance of the property. As a condition of approval, most of the exterior antennae will be removed, so the project will have no significant impact upon any view corridors (Guideline No. 4). The removal of these antennae will also serve to balance the aesthetic impacts of the antennae upon the neighborhood with the applicant’s financial benefit from the operation of the commercial antennae on the site (Guideline No. 5). Finally, with most of the antennae relocated to the inside of the house, they will be effectively screened from view from adjacent properties or rights-of-way (Guideline No. 9).

Section 4: The City Council finds that the approval of Conditional Use Permit No. 230—as conditioned—is consistent with the local zoning authority reserved to the City of Rancho Palos Verdes by the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (47 U.S.C. 332(c)(7)) for the following reasons:

A. The conditional approval of Conditional Use Permit No. 230 "[does] not unreasonably discriminate among providers of functionally equivalent services…and [does] not prohibit or have the effect of prohibiting the provision of personal wireless services" (47 U.S.C. 332(c)(7), subsections (B)(i)(I) and (II)). In reviewing all of the applications to provide personal wireless services on other residentially-zoned property within the City, the City has applied consistently its regulations to these facilities so as to approve facilities that are compatible with surrounding uses and to modify or deny applications that do or will have adverse visual, aesthetic or other impacts upon surrounding properties. The instant application is being approved with conditions requiring the removal of most of the exterior antennae because it will otherwise result in adverse visual and aesthetic impacts upon adjacent properties. The City’s conditional approval of this specific proposal does not prohibit the applicant from providing wireless communications services because the applicant still has the ability to provide these services from the remaining exterior antennae and/or the antennae to be relocated inside the second story of the house. The applicant has admitted that he has transmitted commercially from the site, using the existing antennae located inside the house since 1998. The City has previously approved applications for commercial antennae for a variety of commercial wireless services and service providers, including applications for properties that were zoned or used for single-family residential purposes. Accordingly, the conditional approval of this particular application also does not result in a ban or prohibition of, or have the effect of prohibiting, the placement of these types of facilities within the City of Rancho Palos Verdes.

B. The application for Conditional Use Permit No. 230 was deemed complete by City Staff on September 19, 2001. The City has acted on the applicant’s request for Conditional Use Permit No. 230 "within a reasonable period of time after the request [was] duly filed with [the City], taking into account the nature and scope of such request" (47 U.S.C. 332(c)(7), subsection (B)(ii)). This application has been processed by the City in a timely fashion and in accordance with the time lines established by the State Permit Streamlining Act and CEQA, and the Telecommunications Act. The only delays in the processing of this application are attributable to the applicant’s request for a waiver of the penalty fee (which was denied by the City Council on September 18, 2001) and the applicant’s request for a continuance of this application from the Planning Commission meeting of October 23, 2001 to the meeting of November 13, 2001, and the applicant’s appeal of the Planning Commission’s conditional approval and request for continuance of the appeal from the City Council meeting of February 19, 2002 to the meeting of March 19, 2002.

C. In conditionally approving the application for Conditional Use Permit No. 230, the City has not "[regulated] the placement, construction, and modification of personal wireless service facilities on the basis of the environmental effects of radio frequency emissions to the extent that such facilities comply with the [Federal Communications] Commission's regulations concerning such emissions" (47 U.S.C. 332(c)(7), subsection (B)(iv)). Although interference and radio frequency emissions were raised as issues of concern to surrounding residents at the public hearing and in correspondence to the City, none of the required modifications to the existing antennae on the site are in response to these concerns. Instead, these modifications are imposed only to address the aesthetic impacts of the antennae upon the surrounding neighborhood. City Staff advised the Planning Commission and the City Council that neither body could consider any environmental effects of emissions that comply with FCC regulations, including purported impacts upon health or alleged interference with television reception. The Planning Commission and City Council relied upon that advice and the provisions of the Act and, therefore, has not based its decision to conditionally approve the proposed project in any respect upon any actual or perceived environmental effects attributable to radio frequency emissions. Rather, the conditional approval regulates the aesthetic impacts and land use compatibility issues traditionally addressed through the exercise of local governmental police powers.

Section 5: The applicant’s appeal of the conditions of approval imposed by the Planning Commission is denied. However, modifications to the conditions entitle the applicant to a refund of one-half of the appeal fee pursuant to Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code Section 17.80.120.

Section 6: The time within which the judicial review of the decision reflected in this Resolution, if available, must be sought is governed by Section 1094.6 of the California Code of Civil Procedure and other applicable short periods of limitation. Pursuant to the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (47 U.S.C. 332(c)(7)(B)(v)), any person adversely affected by the City’s final action in this matter may, within thirty (30) days after such action, commence an action in any court of competent jurisdiction.

Section 7: For the foregoing reasons and based on the information and findings included in the Staff Report, the testimony and evidence presented at the public hearings before the Planning Commission and the City Council, the Minutes and the other records of this proceeding on file with the City, the City Council of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes hereby approves Conditional Use Permit No. 230, thereby approving the commercial use of certain antennae and related support structures and equipment on the site of a single-family residence, located at 26708 Indian Peak Road, in the Grandview community, subject to the conditions contained in Exhibit 'A', attached hereto and made a part hereof by this reference, which are necessary to protect the public health, safety and welfare.

PASSED, APPROVED, AND ADOPTED this 19th day of March 2002.


_______________________
John McTaggart, Mayor

ATTEST:


____________________
Jo Purcell, City Clerk

State of California)
County of Los Angeles) ss
City of Rancho Palos Verdes)

I, JO PURCELL, City Clerk of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes, hereby certify that the above Resolution No. 2002-____ was duly and regularly passed and adopted by the said City Council at a regular meeting thereof held on March 19, 2002.

_________________________________

City Clerk


[Alternate Draft Resolution]

EXHIBIT 'A'
CONDITIONS OF APPROVAL
FOR CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 230
(26708 Indian Peak Road)

1. Within ninety (90) days following adoption of this Resolution, the applicant and the property owner shall submit to the City a statement, in writing, that they have read, understand, and agree to all conditions of approval contained in this Resolution. Failure to provide said written statement shall render this approval null and void.

2. This approval is for the use of antennae and related support structures and equipment on the site of a single-family residence in the Grandview community for commercial purposes. The commercial use of the property is conditioned upon the following modifications:

a. The roof-mounted equipment shall consist of a maximum of two (2) vertical masts, each of which shall not exceed eight and one-half (8½) feet in height, as measured from the point where the mast meets the roof surface.

b. Each of the two masts may have up to four (4) antennae affixed thereon, similar to those that currently are present at the site, provided that they do not extend any higher than the mast itself and that each antenna or radiating element does not project more than two feet horizontally from the center of the mast.

c. In addition, the two (2) existing television antennae also may remain on the roof of the residence, so long as they do not exceed eight and one-half (8½) feet in height, as measured from the point where they are attached to the roof surface; that the horizontal boom of each antenna does not exceed six feet in length; that no radiating element or antenna attached to the boom exceeds two feet in length, and that all of the antennae and support structures on the property are maintained in compliance with the Municipal Code.

d. The Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement shall review the exterior masts and antennae to ensure compliance with this condition. Any additional antennae, masts or other antenna support structure(s) shall be placed inside of the house and, provided that they are completely located inside of the house, they shall not require further approval or modification of this conditional use permit.

e. The exterior masts and antennae described in this condition may be used for either commercial or non-commercial purposes.

The Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement is authorized to make only minor modifications to the approved plans and any of the conditions of approval, and only if such modifications will achieve substantially the same results as would strict compliance with the approved plans and conditions. Otherwise, any substantive change, such as the enlargement, expansion or addition to, the two exterior masts and antennae that this approval allows outside of the existing residential structure shall require approval of a revision to Conditional Use Permit No. 230 by the City Council and shall require a new and separate environmental review.

3. All project development on the site shall conform to the specific standards contained in these conditions of approval or, if not addressed herein, in the RS-5 district development standards of the City's Municipal Code.

4. Failure to comply with and adhere to any or all of these conditions of approval may be cause to revoke the approval of the project by the City Council after conducting a duly noticed public hearing on the matter.

5. If the necessary modifications to site, the house and the existing roof-mounted antenna support structure and array, as specified by these conditions of approval, have not been made within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application, approval of the project shall expire and be of no further effect unless, prior to expiration, a written request for extension is filed with the Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement and approved by the City Council.

6. In the event that any of these conditions conflict with the recommendations and/or requirements of another permitting agency or City department, the stricter standard shall apply.

7. The applicant shall submit a plan depicting the roof-mounted masts and antennae that may be retained or erected pursuant to this approval, within (90) ninety days of the date of the City’s final action on this application. The applicant shall obtain a building permit and any other approval required by the Building Code to modify or construct the masts and attached antennae on the property.

8. Unless otherwise modified by these conditions, all conditions of approval for Site Plan Review No. 8736—for the 198-square-foot storage room addition—and Minor Exception Permit No. 555—for a front-yard fence in excess of the 42-inch height limit—remain in full force and effect.

9. Pursuant to Section 17.76.020(A)(4)(c) of the City's Municipal Code, the applicant/landowner shall agree, in writing, to cooperate in possible future co-location of additional wireless communications facilities inside the structure on this site. Under the terms of this agreement, the applicant/landowner shall be obligated to:

a. Respond in a timely, comprehensive manner to a request for information from a potential shared-use applicant; and

b. Negotiate in good faith for shared use by third parties.

10. The roof-mounted antennae and masts that are hereby approved shall be painted a color that helps to camouflage them against the background sky. The color shall be approved by the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement before the antenna support structure and array are painted. Painting shall be completed and inspected by the Director within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application.

11. The two roof-mounted masts and the two television antennae approved by this resolution shall not be increased or expanded without the advance approval of the Planning Commission, including, but not limited to, any additional antennae, masts, antennae support structures, antenna assemblies or radiating elements of any kind. Existing masts and antennae that are permitted by this approval may be removed and replaced for maintenance and/or repair as long as the replacement masts or antennae are the same or less in height, length and mass and in the same location as the approved masts and antennae, and provided that the total number of masts and antennae is not increased.

12. Notwithstanding Condition No. 11 above, within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application, the applicant shall remove all existing masts, antennae, horizontal support structure, pipes, ducts and other components of the roof-mounted antenna assembly that are not expressly approved by this Resolution. Any other antennae and antenna support structures either shall be removed or relocated inside the house.

13. Except in case of emergency, regular maintenance of the antennae and related support equipment and structures shall only occur between the hours of 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday.

14. All service vehicles related to the maintenance of the antennae shall be parked off-street in the driveway or garage of the house. No more than two (2) service vehicles are allowed on the site at any time.

15. Any new antennae and related support equipment and structures shall be located inside of the house. No new exterior building-mounted antennae or support structures will be allowed without approval of a modification to this conditional use permit by the City Council.

16. The support equipment for the antennae on the site, including air conditioning units, shall not generate noise levels in excess of 65 dBA, as measured at the property line of the subject property. Any sound attenuation measures to achieve this standard shall be the responsibility of the applicant, and shall be subject to the review and approval of the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement.

17. The operation of the antennae on the site shall at all times comply with the requirements, standards and regulations of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

18. Within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application, the exterior appearance of the house and site shall be brought into consistency with neighborhood standards by:

a. Painting the exterior of the house and garage and maintaining the exterior of the building so that the paint is not peeling or cracking in a manner detrimental to the value of the property and neighboring properties, to the satisfaction of the Director; and,

b. Landscaping the front yard area, and maintaining the landscaping in a neat and thriving condition to the satisfaction of the Director.

19. Within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application, the property shall be occupied by the owner, or some other person chosen by the owner, as that person’s primary residence. The necessary improvements to make the house habitable shall be completed within the initial 90-day period—including a functional kitchen, toilet and bathing facilities and utility connections for gas, electricity, water and sewer—and shall be maintained continuously. The applicant shall contract with a landscape and maintenance service to provide weekly service at the property to ensure that the structure and grounds are maintained free from litter, debris, and overgrown vegetation so as not to become an eyesore, if the resident is not maintaining the property as required by these conditions of approval and by the City’s Municipal Code.

20. Within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application, the house shall be equipped with smoke alarms and fire extinguishers, including those areas where the commercial power supplies, transmitters and other related equipment are kept.

21. Within ninety (90) days of the City’s final action on this application, the applicant shall obtain a business license from the City. A valid City business license shall be maintained at all times while commercial radio transmissions occur from the property.

22. At approximately six (6) months from the date of the City’s final action on this application, the Planning Commission shall review the project for conformance with the conditions of approval, and determine if any conditions of approval need to be added, deleted or modified, or if the permit should be revoked. Within the initial 6-month permit period, the applicant shall be responsible for completing all of the site and use modifications described in this Resolution. Failure to fulfill these conditions may lead to the revocation of this permit during the 6-month review process by the Planning Commission.



13. Reconsideration of the Decision on the Appeal of Conditional Use Permit No. 207 (Appellant: Mark Abrams, 44 Oceanaire Drive). (Fox)

Recommendation: Conditionally approve Conditional Use Permit No. 207.

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND MEMBERS OF THE CITY COUNCIL

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING AND CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: MARCH 19, 2002

SUBJECT: RECONSIDERATION OF THE DECISION ON THE APPEAL OF CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 207 [APPELLANT: MARK ABRAMS, 44 OCEANAIRE DRIVE]

Staff Coordinator:Kit Fox, aicp, Senior Planner

RECOMMENDATION

Adopt Resolution No. 2002-__, adopting the Mitigated Negative Declaration prepared pursuant to Environmental Assessment No. 720; and adopt Resolution No. 2002-__, conditionally approving Conditional Use Permit No. 207.

BACKGROUND

On December 18, 1989, the applicant and appellant, Mark Abrams, submitted an application for Site Plan Review No. 5322 to the Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement. The request was for a retractable amateur radio antenna support structure and array with a maximum extended height of forty feet (40'0") in the rear-yard of his residence at 44 Oceanaire Drive. Staff approved the application for Site Plan Review No. 5322 on January 8, 1990. The support structure and array were erected pursuant to Building Permit No. 9827, which was finaled on May 24, 1990.* Subsequently, Mr. Abrams received after-the-fact approval of Site Plan Review No. 7996 for a 40-foot-tall, 2-inch diameter whip antenna on March 13, 1997, and also received approval of Site Plan Review No. 8017 for a second antenna support structure and array on January 19, 1998. The whip antenna was already in place on the property at the time the application for Site Plan Review No. 7996 was submitted and its approval was not appealed, but the City’s approval of Site Plan Review No. 8017 was appealed to the Planning Commission by the owner of the adjacent property at 46 Oceanaire Drive, Karyl Newton, on January 30, 1998.

*This is the antenna support structure and array that is the subject of the current application for Conditional Use Permit No. 207.

The appeal of Site Plan Review No. 8017 was heard by the Planning Commission on March 10, 1998, but was continued to the Planning Commission meeting of April 14, 1998, to allow Staff time to research additional issues that were brought up during public testimony on the appeal. Among these issues was an admission by Mr. Abrams that certain existing antenna(e) was/were being used for commercial purposes (as reflected in the Minutes of that meeting) and evidence from the appellant that the existing antenna support structure and array exceeded forty feet (40’0") in height. However, on April 7, 1998, the City Council enacted an urgency ordinance placing a moratorium on applications for more than one amateur radio antenna support structure on a property, so the application and appeal of Site Plan Review No. 8017 were tabled.

Approximately a year later, on April 16, 1999, the antenna moratorium was lifted and new antenna regulations went into effect. The application and appeal of Site Plan Review No. 8017 were both voided by these new antenna regulations, so Mr. Abrams was not permitted to construct a second amateur radio antenna support structure and array on the property. However, during the intervening year, the City was able to verify that Mr. Abrams was utilizing at least some of the existing antennae on the site for commercial purposes without City approval. On September 13, 1999, the City obtained a preliminary injunction, which enjoined Mr. Abrams from using the existing antennae for commercial purposes unless and until he received approval of a conditional use permit (CUP) from the City. The City also investigated the issue of the height of the existing antenna support structure and array, but found that the building permit issued and finaled by the Building and Safety Division had erroneously permitted the tower to be erected approximately twelve-and-a-half feet (12’6") taller than the Planning Division had approved in 1990.

On July 12, 1999, Mr. Abrams submitted an application for Conditional Use Permit No. 207 to the Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement. The request was for the conversion of certain existing antennae on the property from only amateur use to both amateur and commercial use. The project was deemed incomplete on August 9, 1999, pending the submittal of additional information and plans and payment of penalty and environmental assessment fees. Plans and additional information were submitted to the City on September 30, 1999. The application was deemed incomplete again on October 29, 1999, pending clarification of the plans and additional information and payment of penalty and environmental assessment fees. On January 21, 2000, Mr. Abrams supplied the additional information requested by Staff, paid the penalty and environmental assessment fees, and requested consideration of a fee waiver by the City Council. The applications of Conditional Use Permit No. 207 and Environmental Assessment No. 720 were deemed complete on January 31, 2000. On February 15, 2000, the City Council considered Mr. Abrams’ request for a waiver of the penalty and environmental assessment fees, and granted a waiver of the penalty fee only.

The Planning Commission considered Mr. Abrams’ application at public hearings on April 25, 2000 and May 9, 2000. At its May 9, 2000 meeting, the Planning Commission adopted P.C. Resolution No. 2000-12, thereby denying the application for Conditional Use Permit No. 207 with prejudice. The Planning Commission found that the project site was not adequate in size and shape to accommodate the proposed use; the approval of the proposed commercial use at this location would result in significant adverse effects on adjacent property; the proposed use was contrary to the General Plan; there might be other locations and antenna towers that could accommodate the applicant's proposed commercial transmissions; the proposed project was not consistent with the City’s Wireless Communications Antenna Development Guidelines; and the denial of Conditional Use Permit No. 207 was consistent with the local zoning authority reserved to the City by the Telecommunications Act of 1996. Mr. Abrams filed an appeal of this decision on May 10, 2000. The City Council considered Mr. Abrams’ appeal at public hearings on July 5, 2000, July 18, 2000 and August 15, 2000. At its meeting on August 15, 2000, the City Council adopted Resolution No. 2000-53, thereby denying Mr. Abrams’ appeal and upholding the Planning Commission’s denial of Conditional Use Permit No. 207.

On August 24, 2000, Mr. Abrams filed suit against the City in Federal court, alleging that the City’s action violated the Telecommunications Act of 1996. On January 9, 2002, the United States District Court for the Central District of California ruled in the case of Abrams v. Rancho Palos Verdes and voided the City’s denial of Mr. Abrams’ application for Conditional Use Permit No. 207. The Court ruled that the record did not contain substantial evidence to support the City’s decision denying the conditional use permit because Mr. Abrams was not proposing any alteration of the existing antenna tower to accommodate commercial transmissions. Subsequently, on February 25, 2002, the Court denied Mr. Abrams’ claim for damages but ordered the City to promptly issue Conditional Use Permit No.207 without requiring Mr. Abrams to modify the size, height, location or configuration of the existing antennae support structure and array.

The Court also ordered the City to draft an injunction and submit to the Court, which has occurred. The Court allowed Mr. Abrams’ attorneys the opportunity to comment on the proposed order, and they have filed an objection to the form of injunction stating that the City should be precluded from imposing any conditions on the conditional use permit. As of the date of the preparation of this report, the City Attorney has not received the Court’s final order. Thus, it is not entirely clear whether conditions may be imposed by the City Council. However, in reliance upon the Court’s oral comments from the bench, which indicated that reasonable conditions may be imposed by the City to address aesthetic and other concerns, proposed conditions have been included in the attached Resolution.

Staff has brought this matter back to the City Council in compliance with the proposed form of order that was submitted to the Court. It is important to note, however, that the City is not precluded from appealing the Court’s decision if this permit is issued, and that the determination of whether to appeal has not yet been made by the City Council.

DISCUSSION

In response to the decision of the United States District Court, Staff has prepared the attached draft Resolutions for the City Council’s consideration. Consistent with the direction of the Court, the Resolution approving Conditional Use Permit No. 207 includes conditions that will:

  • Require the applicant to submit a plan depicting the number, dimensions and configuration of the existing antennae on the antenna support structure, to used as a basis for determining compliance with the conditions of approval for this project.

  • Require the applicant to paint the entire antenna support structure and array in a neutral color that will blend with the background foliage and sky.
  • Prohibit additional antennae or radiating elements from being added to the existing antenna support structure, and prohibit any other antennae, antenna assemblies or antenna support structures from being added to the property without prior City approval of a revision to this conditional use permit; and require existing antennae that are located on the existing tower that are removed and replaced for maintenance and repair purposes to be the same size (or smaller), same height (or lower), same general type of antennae and the same location as the antenna(e) they are replacing.
  • Require the existing tree in the rear yard of the subject property, which provides some screening for the existing antenna tower, to be maintained by the applicant in a size and fullness sufficient to continue to provide a continuous degree of screening and to be replaced by another tree of an evergreen variety that is at least a twenty-four-inch (24") box size tree if it dies or is felled by an act of God or any other intentional or unintentional act.

  • Limit the days and hours for regular maintenance of the antennae and related support equipment to 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday.

  • Require all service vehicles related to the maintenance of the antennae to be parked off-street in the driveway or in the garage of the house.
  • Require the support equipment for the antennae on the site, including air conditioning units, to generate noise levels below 65 dBA at the property line, and require any sound attenuation measures to achieve this standard to be the responsibility of the applicant.

  • Preclude placing any lights upon the antenna tower or otherwise illuminating it in any manner.

  • Require the operation of the antennae to comply with the requirements, standards and regulations of the Federal Communications Commission.
  • Require the applicant to obtain and maintain a valid a business license.

  • Mandate a 6-month review of the project to assess the project for conformance with the conditions of approval.

None of these conditions requires any modification to the size, number, height or location of the existing antenna support structure and array on the property. As such, Staff believes that these conditions are consistent with the oral direction of the Court, as well as with the zoning authority reserved to the City by the Telecommunications Act of 1996.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

On February 27, 2002, public hearing notices for the reconsideration of the decision on the appeal of Conditional Use Permit No. 207 were mailed to the applicant, his attorney, the Del Cerro homeowners’ association, thirty-nine property owners within a 500-foot radius of the project site and thirty-one other interested parties who had previously provided written comments and/or oral testimony regarding this project. On March 2, 2002, public notice of the March 19, 2002 City Council hearing for the reconsideration of the decision on the appeal of Conditional Use Permit No. 207 was published in the Palos Verdes Peninsula News. As of the date this Staff report was completed, Staff had received several items of correspondence in opposition to the issuance of this permit, which are attached to this report for the City Council’s consideration.

CONCLUSION

Based upon the foregoing discussion and the order of the United States District Court in the case of Abrams v. Rancho Palos Verdes, Staff recommends that the City Council adopt Resolution No. 2002-__, thereby adopting the Mitigated Negative Declaration and adopt Resolution No. 2002-__, thereby conditionally approving Conditional Use Permit No. 207.

FISCAL IMPACT

Staff does not expect that the approval of this permit will have any fiscal impact upon the City. However, it is possible that the City’s action on Conditional Use Permit No. 207 could lead to additional litigation, the costs of which are unknown and cannot be reliably estimated at this time.

ALTERNATIVES

In addition to Staff’s recommendation, the alternatives available for the City Council’s consideration include:

  1. Approve Conditional Use Permit No. 207 with additional and/or modified conditions of approval. If this alternative is chosen, the City Council should continue this matter to the next City Council meeting so that Staff can prepare appropriate Resolutions and conditions of approval for the Mitigated Negative Declaration and Conditional Use Permit No. 207.
  2. Identify any issues of concern with the proposed project and environmental analysis, provide Staff with direction in modifying the conditions and/or environmental analysis, and continue the public hearing to the next City Council meeting.

Respectfully submitted:
Joel Rojas, aicp, Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement

Reviewed by:
Les Evans, City Manager

Attachments:
Resolution No. 2002-__ (MND)
Resolution No. 2002-__ (CUP)
Mitigated Negative Declaration
Public correspondence


RESOLUTION NO. 2002-__

A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES, ADOPTING A MITIGATED NEGATIVE DECLARATION THUS MAKING CERTAIN ENVIRONMENTAL FINDINGS IN ASSOCIATION WITH ENVIRONMENTAL ASSESSMENT NO. 720 AND CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 207 TO ALLOW THE PROPOSED COMMERCIAL USE OF EXISTING ANTENNAE ON AN EXISTING ANTENNA SUPPORT STRUCTURE, LOCATED AT 44 OCEANAIRE DRIVE IN THE DEL CERRO NEIGHBORHOOD

WHEREAS, on July 12, 1999, September 30, 1999, and January 21, 2000, Mr. Abrams submitted applications and supplemental information for Conditional Use Permit No. 207 and Environmental Assessment No. 720 to allow the commercial use of certain of the existing antennae on the existing antenna support structure on his property in the Del Cerro neighborhood; and,

WHEREAS, on January 31, 2000, the applications for Conditional Use Permit No. 207 and Environmental Assessment No. 720 were deemed complete by Staff; and,

WHEREAS, pursuant to the provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act, Public Resources Code Sections 21000 et. seq. ("CEQA"), the State's CEQA Guidelines, California Code of Regulations, Title 14, Section 15000 et. seq., the City's Local CEQA Guidelines, and Government Code Section 65962.5(f) (Hazardous Waste and Substances Statement), the City of Rancho Palos Verdes prepared an Initial Study and determined that the approval of Conditional Use Permit No. 207 could result in a significant adverse effect upon the environment unless mitigation measures were imposed and, therefore, a draft Mitigated Negative Declaration has been prepared and notice of same was given in the manner required by law; and,

WHEREAS, after notice issued pursuant to the requirements of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code and the State CEQA Guidelines, the Planning Commission held a duly noticed public hearing on April 25, 2000, and May 9, 2000, at which time all interested parties were given an opportunity to be heard and present evidence; and,

WHEREAS, on May 9, 2000, the Planning Commission adopted P.C. Resolution No. 2000-12, thereby denying the application for Conditional Use Permit No. 207 with prejudice; and,

WHEREAS, on May 10, 2000, within the 15-day appeal period prescribed by Section 17.80.070 of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code, Mr. Abrams appealed the Planning Commission’s denial of Conditional Use Permit No. 207 to the City Council; and,

WHEREAS, after notice issued pursuant to the requirements of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code, the City Council held a duly noticed public hearing on June 6, 2000, and July 5, 2000, at which time all interested parties were given an opportunity to be heard and present evidence; and,

WHEREAS, after the public hearing was closed on July 5, 2000, the applicant objected to some of the information that had been submitted to the City Council during the public hearing and also sought to present additional information to the City Council, even though the public hearing already had been closed; and,

WHEREAS, in order to address Mr. Abrams’ concerns, on July 18, 2000, the City Council directed staff to re-notice the public hearing so that it could be re-opened and any additional information that is relevant to the application could be considered by the City Council prior to making a decision on the application; and,

WHEREAS, the re-opened public hearing was held on August 15, 2000, at which time all interested parties were given an opportunity to be heard and present evidence that had not been presented previously to the City Council; and,

WHEREAS, on August 15, 2000, the City Council adopted Resolution No. 2000-53, thereby denying the application for Conditional Use Permit No. 207 with prejudice; and,

WHEREAS, on August 24, 2000, Mr. Abrams filed suit against the City in Federal court in order to overturn the City’s action on the grounds that it violated the Telecommunications Act of 1996; and,

WHEREAS, on January 9, 2002, the United States District Court for the Central District of California ruled in the case of Abrams v. Rancho Palos Verdes and vacated the City’s denial of Mr. Abrams’ application for Conditional Use Permit No. 207; and,

WHEREAS, on February 25, 2002, the United States District Court for the Central District of California subsequently denied Mr. Abrams’ petition for damages in the case of Abrams v. Rancho Palos Verdes and ordered the City to issue Conditional Use Permit No. 207 without requiring Mr. Abrams to modify the size, height, location or configuration of the existing antennae support structure and array; and,

WHEREAS, the City revised the Mitigated Negative Declaration originally prepared pursuant to Environmental Assessment No. 720 to incorporate mitigation measures to reduce the aesthetic impacts of the existing antenna support structure and array to the extent feasible, in accordance with the Court’s order and in compliance with the provisions of CEQA; and

WHEREAS, after notice issued pursuant to the requirements of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code and the State CEQA Guidelines, the City Council held a duly noticed public hearing on March 19, 2002 to reconsider Conditional Use Permit No. 207 and Environmental Assessment No. 720, at which time all interested parties were given an opportunity to be heard and present evidence

NOW, THEREFORE, THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES DOES HEREBY FIND, DETERMINE, AND RESOLVE AS FOLLOWS:

Section 1: The subject application would permit the conversion of an existing 52½-foot-tall antenna support structure and array from amateur use only to both amateur and commercial use. There will be no change in the number or type of antennae or the height, location or configuration of the antenna tower. The subject property is currently improved with a single-family residence. The City Council finds that the proposed project is permitted within the RS-2 zoning district—provided that a conditional use permit is issued—and that the commercial use of the existing antennae and support structure would not result in significant adverse environmental impacts. In making this finding, the City Council considered the project's mitigation measures, which address the issues of Aesthetics and Cumulative Impacts.

Section 2: With respect to aesthetics, the City’s Development Code and Wireless Communications Antenna Development Guidelines require antenna towers to be screened—to the maximum extent feasible—in order to reduce their visual impacts upon surrounding properties. In previous approvals for commercial antennae in the City, this screening has usually been accomplished by requiring antennae and antenna towers to be painted to blend into the background and/or by planting screening foliage. Although the existing antenna support structure and array does not significant impair the protected view from and surrounding residences, the aesthetic impacts of the structure also include its negative visual impacts upon the general scenic character of the neighborhood. These impacts are related to the height of the existing tower and antenna array as compared to other features in the neighborhood. The 52½-foot-tall tower is much taller than all the residences in the immediate area, and many of the lighter-colored elements of the structure stand out visually against the background sky and foliage. As a result of the recent court decision in the case of Abrams v. Rancho Palos Verdes, the City cannot require the existing antenna support structure and array to be modified in any way that reduces the number, size or height of the existing antennae or the tower itself. However, changing the color of the existing antenna support structure and array to a more uniform neutral color would help it to blend into the background sky and foliage. Prohibiting any lighting on the antenna tower will also reduce adverse visual impacts. There is also a large tree adjacent to the antenna tower that helps to screen and camouflage the tower, which should be retained and maintained in a manner to continue to provide this level of screening. As such, the City Council finds that imposition of mitigation measures regarding the color of the tower and the retention of existing screening foliage will reduce the aesthetic impacts of the project to less-than-significant levels.

Section 3: With respect to cumulative impacts, the proposed project does not include any physical modification or alteration of the existing, developed site. The direct environmental impacts of the project are limited to the effects related to the operation and maintenance of the commercial antennae, but these effects are expected to be less than significant. However, the indirect aesthetic impacts of the project are potentially cumulatively considerable. Although there are no similar projects existing or currently proposed on other properties in the immediate vicinity of the project site, the topography and geographic orientation of the neighborhood make it a desirable site for both amateur and commercial radio use. It is possible that a similar tower for either commercial or amateur use could be proposed on a nearby site at some future date. In order to address the potential for future cumulative impacts of this project, any future modifications to the existing antenna support structure and array that involve additional antennae or changes in the height or configuration of the antenna tower should require the approval of revision to Conditional Use Permit No. 207 by the City. As such, the City Council finds that imposition of a mitigation measure regarding future modifications of the existing antennae support structure and array will reduce the cumulative impacts of the project to less-than-significant levels.

Section 4: For reasons discussed in the Initial Study, which is incorporated herein by reference, the project will not have any potential to achieve short-term, to the disadvantage of long-term, environmental goals, nor would the project have environmental effects which will cause substantial adverse effects on human beings, either directly or indirectly.

Section 5: The applicant has consulted the lists prepared pursuant to Section 65962.5 of the Government Code and has submitted a signed statement indicating whether the project and any alternatives are located on a site which is included on any such list, and has specified any such list. The Lead Agency has consulted the lists compiled pursuant to Section 65962.5 of the Government Code, and has certified that the development project and any alternatives proposed in this application are not included in these lists of known Hazardous Waste and Substances Sites as compiled by the California Environmental Protection Agency.

Section 6: The mitigation measures set forth in the Mitigation Monitoring Program, attached hereto as Exhibit ’A’, are incorporated into the scope of the proposed project. These measures will reduce potential significant impacts identified in the Initial Study to a less than significant level.

Section 7: For the foregoing reasons and based on its independent review and evaluation of the information and findings contained in the Initial Study, Staff Reports, minutes, and records of the proceedings, the City Council has determined that the project as conditioned and mitigated will not result in a significant adverse impact on the environment and, therefore, adopts the Mitigated Negative Declaration making certain environmental findings in association with Environmental Assessment No. 720 and Conditional Use Permit No. 207 to allow the proposed commercial use of existing antennae on an existing antenna support structure, located at 44 Oceanaire Drive in the Del Cerro neighborhood.

Section 8: The City Council is adopting this Mitigated Negative Declaration for the subject commercial use at this specific location in order to comply with the order of the United States District Court issued on January 9, 2002. If that order is reversed, the City Council hereby reserves the right to vacate this Resolution and decision and reinstate its prior decision denying the conditional use permit or, in the alternative, to reopen the hearing to consider adopting additional mitigation measures to further reduce the environmental impacts of the project, including but not limited to the reduction in the height and bulk of the existing antenna support structure and array.

PASSED, APPROVED, AND ADOPTED this 19th day of March 2002.


_______________________
John McTaggart, Mayor

ATTEST:


____________________
Jo Purcell, City Clerk

State of California)
County of Los Angeles) ss
City of Rancho Palos Verdes)

I, JO PURCELL, City Clerk of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes, hereby certify that the above Resolution No. 2002-____ was duly and regularly passed and adopted by the said City Council at a regular meeting thereof held on March 19, 2002.

 

_________________________________
City Clerk


Exhibit ‘A’

Mitigation Monitoring Program

Project: Environmental Assessment No. 720 for Conditional Use Permit 207

Location: 44 Oceanaire Drive, Rancho Palos Verdes, CA 90275

Applicant/
Landowner: Mark Abrams


TABLE OF CONTENTS

I. Introduction

II. Management of the Mitigation Monitoring Program

Roles and Responsibilities
Mitigation and Monitoring Program Procedures
Mitigation Monitoring Operations

III. Mitigation Monitoring Program Checklist

IV. Mitigation Monitoring Summary Table

I. INTRODUCTION

PURPOSE

This Mitigation Monitoring Program (MMP), to allow the conversion of an existing, 52½-foot-tall antenna support structure and array from amateur use only to both amateur and commercial use, located at 44 Oceanaire Drive in the City of Rancho Palos Verdes, responds to Section 21081.6 of the Public Resources Code. Section 21081.6 requires a lead or responsible agency that approves or carries out a project where a Mitigated Negative Declaration has identified significant environmental effects, to adopt a "reporting or monitoring program for adopted or required changes to mitigate or avoid significant environmental effects." The City of Rancho Palos Verdes is acting as lead agency for the project.

An Initial Study/Mitigated Negative Declaration was prepared to address the potential environmental impacts of the project. Where appropriate, this environmental document recommended mitigation measures to mitigate or avoid impacts identified. Consistent with Section 21080 (2)(c) of the Public Resources Code, a mitigation reporting or monitoring program is required to ensure that the adopted mitigation measures under the jurisdiction of the City are implemented. The City will adopt this MMP when adopting the Mitigated Negative Declaration.

ENVIRONMENTAL PROCEDURES

This MMP has been prepared in accordance with the California Environmental Quality Act of 1970 (CEQA), as amended (Public Resources Code Section 21000 et seq.) and the State Guidelines for Implementation of CEQA (CEQA Guidelines), as amended (California Administrative Code Section 15000 et seq.). This MMP complies with the rules, regulations, and procedures adopted by the City of Rancho Palos Verdes for implementation of CEQA.

MITIGATION MONITORING PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS

Section 21081.6 of the Public Resources Code states: "When making the findings required by subdivision (a) of Section 21081 or when adopting a negative declaration pursuant to paragraph (2) of subdivision (c) of Section 21081, the public agency shall adopt a reporting or monitoring program for the changes to the project which it has adopted or made a condition of project approval in order to mitigate or avoid significant effects on the environment. The reporting or monitoring program shall be designed to ensure compliance during project implementation. For those changes which have been required or incorporated into the project at the request of an agency having jurisdiction by law over natural resources affected by the project, that agency shall, if so requested by the lead or responsible agency, prepare and submit a proposed reporting or monitoring program."

II. MANAGEMENT OF THE MITIGATION MONITORING PROGRAM

ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES

The MMP for the project will be in place through all phases of the project including final design, pre-grading, construction, and operation. The City will have the primary enforcement role for the mitigation measures.

MITIGATION MONITORING PROGRAM PROCEDURES

The mitigation monitoring procedures for this MMP consists of filing requirements and compliance verification. The Mitigation Monitoring Checklist and procedures for its use are outlined below.

Mitigation Monitoring Program Checklist

The MMP Checklist provides a comprehensive list of the required mitigation measures. In addition, the Mitigation Monitoring Checklist includes: the implementing action when the mitigation measure will occur; the method of verification of compliance; the timing of verification; the department or agency responsible for implementing the mitigation measures; and compliance verification. Section III provides the MMP Checklist.

Mitigation Monitoring Program Files

Files shall be established to document and retain the records of this MMP. The files shall be established, organized, and retained by the City of Rancho Palos Verdes department of Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement.

Compliance Verification

The MMP Checklist shall be signed when compliance of the mitigation measure is met according to the City of Rancho Palos Verdes Director of Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement. The compliance verification section of the MMP Checklist shall be signed, for mitigation measures requiring ongoing monitoring, and when the monitoring of a mitigation measure is completed.

MITIGATION MONITORING OPERATIONS

The following steps shall be followed for implementation, monitoring, and verification of each mitigation measure:

1. The City of Rancho Palos Verdes, Director of Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement shall designate a party responsible for monitoring of the mitigation measures.

2. The City of Rancho Palos Verdes, Director of Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement shall provide to the party responsible for the monitoring of a given mitigation measure, a copy of the MMP Checklist indicating the mitigation measures for which the person is responsible and other pertinent information.

3. The party responsible for monitoring shall then verify compliance and sign the Compliance Verification column of the MMP Checklist for the appropriate mitigation measures.

Mitigation measures shall be implemented as specified by the MMP Checklist. During any project phase, unanticipated circumstances may arise requiring the refinement or addition of mitigation measures. The City of Rancho Palos Verdes, Director of Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement with advice from Staff or another City department, is responsible for recommending changes to the mitigation measures, if needed.  If mitigation measures are refined, the Director of Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement would document the change and shall notify the appropriate design, construction, or operations personnel about refined requirements.

III. MITIGATION MONITORING PROGRAM CHECKLIST

INTRODUCTION

This section provides the MMP Checklist for the project as approved by the Planning Commission of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes on May 8, 2001. Mitigation measures are listed in the order in which they appear in the Initial Study.

  • Types of measures are project design, construction, operational, or cumulative.

  • Time of Implementation indicates when the measure is to be implemented.

  • Responsible Entity indicates who is responsible for implementation.

  • Compliance Verification provides space for future reference and notation that compliance has been monitored, verified, and is consistent with these mitigation measures.

MITIGATION MEASURES

TYPE

TIME OF
IMPLEMENTATION

RESPONSIBLE ENTITY

COMPLIANCE VERIFICATION

AESTHETICS

1. Within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this permit, the applicant shall paint the entire antenna support structure and array in a neutral color—such as gray, gray-green or gray-blue—that will blend with the background foliage and sky. The applicant shall provide the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement with a selection of possible colors for approval prior to the painting of the antenna support structure and array. The applicant shall be continuously responsible for maintaining the antenna support structure and array in the approved paint color.

Project Design/
Operational

Within ninety (90) days after approval by the City

Applicant/
Developer

 

2. The existing tree in the year yard of the subject property, as depicted in photographs of the property taken on March 14, 2002 and kept in the City’s files, provides screening for the existing antenna tower. This tree shall be maintained by the applicant in a size and fullness equivalent to the March 14, 2002 photographs so as to continue to provide this same degree of screening. In the event that this tree dies or is felled by an act of God or any other intentional or unintentional act, it must be replaced by another tree of an evergreen variety that is at least a twenty-four-inch (24") box size tree.

Project Design/
Operational

On-going

Applicant

 

3. No lights may be placed upon the antenna tower, nor may it be otherwise illuminated in any manner.

Project Design/
Operational

On-going

Applicant

 

CUMULATIVE IMPACTS

1. No additional antennae may be added to the existing antenna support structure without prior City approval of a revision to this conditional use permit. Existing antennae on the antenna support structure may be removed and replaced for maintenance and repair purposes, but the replacement antenna(e) must be the same size (or smaller), same height (or lower), same type and same location as the antenna(e) they are replacing.

Cumulative

Prior to any future modification of the existing antenna support structure and array

Applicant

 

 


RESOLUTION NO. 2002-__

A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES APPROVING CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 207, THEREBY APPROVING THE COMMERCIAL USE OF EXISTING ANTENNAE AND AN EXISTING ANTENNA SUPPORT STRUCTURE AND OTHER RELATED EQUIPMENT ON THE SITE OF A SINGLE-FAMILY RESIDENCE, LOCATED AT 44 OCEANAIRE DRIVE IN THE DEL CERRO COMMUNITY

WHEREAS, on January 8, 1990, the applicant/appellant, Mark Abrams, received approval of an application for Site Plan Review No. 5322 to permit the construction of a 40-foot-tall amateur radio antenna support structure and array on his property at 44 Oceanaire Drive in the Del Cerro neighborhood, which could be used only for amateur radio communications and was conditioned expressly to exclude commercial operations; and,

WHEREAS, on January 19, 1998, Mr. Abrams received approval of an application for Site Plan Review No. 8017 to permit the construction of a second, similar amateur radio antenna support structure and array on the same property; and,

WHEREAS, on January 20, 1998, the City’s approval of Site Plan Review No. 8017 was appealed to the Planning Commission by Karyl Newton, the owner of the adjacent property at 46 Oceanaire Drive; and,

WHEREAS, at a duly noticed public hearing on the appeal of Site Plan Review No. 8017, Mr. Abrams admitted that there was at least one antenna on the existing support structure and array that was used for commercial purposes, and evidence was also presented to the Planning Commission which confirmed this commercial use and demonstrated that the existing antenna support structure and array was taller than forty feet (40’0"); and,

WHEREAS, the Planning Commission’s consideration of the appeal of Site Plan Review No. 8017 was continued to a date certain, and was subsequently tabled by the imposition of a moratorium on applications for second antenna support structures, and the application subsequently was voided by the enactment of revisions to the City’s antenna regulations; and,

WHEREAS, the City investigated the allegations regarding the height of the existing antenna support structure and array and found that Building Permit No. 9827 had been erroneously issued and finaled in 1990 to allow the antenna support structure and array to exceed the 40-foot height limit; and,

WHEREAS, the City obtained warrants from the court and retained an expert in the field of radio transmissions, Dr. Henry Richter, to monitor transmissions from the site in connection with an investigation of the allegations regarding commercial use of the existing antennae and found that the allegations were valid. Subsequently, on June 29, 1999, the Los Angeles County Superior Court granted the City’s motion for a preliminary injunction, and on September 13, 1999, the court issued its written order, preventing Mr. Abrams from using the antennae for commercial purposes unless and until the City approved a conditional use permit for that use; and,

WHEREAS, Section 17.76.020(A) of the Rancho Palos Verdes Municipal Code requires an individual to obtain a conditional use permit to install or operate a commercial antenna within the City of Rancho Palos Verdes ("City"). Section 17.96.090 defines the term "commercial antenna" as follows:

"’Commercial Antenna’ means all antennas, parabolic dishes, relay towers and antenna support structures used for the transmission or reception of radio, television and communication signals for commercial purposes. For the purpose of this definition, ‘commercial purposes’ shall mean communications for hire or material compensation, or the use of commercial frequencies, as these terms are defined by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). ‘Commercial antennas’ shall not include antennas owned or operated by governmental agencies; and microcell cellular antennas, owned and operated by state licensed cellular telephone utility companies, located on existing utility poles within the public right-of-way."

Under these provisions of the Rancho Palos Verdes Municipal Code, the applicant, Mr. Abrams, was required to obtain a conditional use permit from the City to use his existing antennae and antenna support structure to broadcast on commercial frequencies, as determined by the Federal Communications Commission ("FCC"); and,

WHEREAS, on July 12, 1999, September 30, 1999, and January 21, 2000, Mr. Abrams submitted applications and supplemental information for Conditional Use Permit No. 207 and Environmental Assessment No. 720 to allow the commercial use of certain of the existing antennae on the existing antenna support structure on his property in the Del Cerro neighborhood; and,

WHEREAS, on January 31, 2000, the applications for Conditional Use Permit No. 207 and Environmental Assessment No. 720 were deemed complete by Staff; and,

WHEREAS, pursuant to the provisions of the California Environmental Quality Act, Public Resources Code Sections 21000 et. seq. ("CEQA"), the State's CEQA Guidelines, California Code of Regulations, Title 14, Section 15000 et. seq., the City's Local CEQA Guidelines, and Government Code Section 65962.5(f) (Hazardous Waste and Substances Statement), the City of Rancho Palos Verdes prepared an Initial Study and determined that the approval of Conditional Use Permit No. 207 could result in a significant adverse effect upon the environment unless mitigation measures were imposed and, therefore, a draft Mitigated Negative Declaration has been prepared and notice of same was given in the manner required by law; and,

WHEREAS, after notice was issued pursuant to the requirements of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code and the State CEQA Guidelines, the Planning Commission held a duly noticed public hearing on April 25, 2000, and May 9, 2000, at which time all interested parties were given an opportunity to be heard and present evidence; and,

WHEREAS, on May 9, 2000, the Planning Commission adopted P.C. Resolution No. 2000-12, thereby denying the application for Conditional Use Permit No. 207 with prejudice; and,

WHEREAS, on May 10, 2000, within the 15-day appeal period prescribed by Section 17.80.070 of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code, Mr. Abrams appealed the Planning Commission’s denial of Conditional Use Permit No. 207 to the City Council; and,

WHEREAS, after notice issued pursuant to the requirements of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code, the City Council held a duly noticed public hearing on June 6, 2000, and July 5, 2000, at which time all interested parties were given an opportunity to be heard and present evidence; and,

WHEREAS, after the public hearing was closed on July 5, 2000, the applicant objected to some of the information that had been submitted to the City Council during the public hearing and also sought to present additional information to the City Council, even though the public hearing already had been closed; and,

WHEREAS, in order to address Mr. Abrams’ concerns, on July 18, 2000, the City Council directed staff to re-notice the public hearing so that it could be re-opened and any additional information that is relevant to the application could be considered by the City Council prior to making a decision on the application; and,

WHEREAS, the re-opened public hearing was held on August 15, 2000, at which time all interested parties were given an opportunity to be heard and present evidence that had not been presented previously to the City Council; and,

WHEREAS, on August 15, 2000, the City Council adopted Resolution No. 2000-53, thereby denying the application for Conditional Use Permit No. 207 with prejudice; and,

WHEREAS, on August 24, 2000, Mr. Abrams filed suit against the City in Federal District Court in order to overturn the City’s decision on the grounds that it violated the Telecommunications Act of 1996; and,

WHEREAS, on January 9, 2002, the United States District Court for the Central District of California ruled in the case of Abrams v. Rancho Palos Verdes and vacated the City’s denial of Mr. Abrams’ application for Conditional Use Permit No. 207; and,

WHEREAS, on February 25, 2002, the United States District Court for the Central District of California subsequently denied Mr. Abrams’ petition for damages in the case of Abrams v. Rancho Palos Verdes and ordered the City to issue Conditional Use Permit No. 207 without requiring Mr. Abrams to modify the size, height, location or configuration of the existing antennae support structure and array; and,

WHEREAS, the City revised the Mitigated Negative Declaration originally prepared pursuant to Environmental Assessment No. 720 to incorporate mitigation measures to reduce the aesthetic impacts of the existing antenna support structure and array, in accordance with the Court’s order and in compliance with the provisions of CEQA; and

WHEREAS, after notice issued pursuant to the requirements of the Rancho Palos Verdes Development Code, the City Council held a duly noticed public hearing on March 19, 2002 to reconsider Conditional Use Permit No. 207 and Environmental Assessment No. 720, at which time all interested parties were given an opportunity to be heard and present evidence;

NOW, THEREFORE, THE CITY COUNCIL DOES HEREBY FIND, DETERMINE, AND RESOLVE AS FOLLOWS:

Section 1: Pursuant to the order of the United States District Court, the City Council hereby approves the application for Conditional Use Permit No. 207 to legalize the use of the existing antenna support structure and array on the site for commercial purposes:

A. For the purposes of this determination on the subject application and throughout this Resolution, the term "existing antenna support structure and array" and its variants refers only to the antenna support structure and antenna array depicted in the plans submitted to the City by the applicant on April 24, 2000, as part of his application for a conditional use permit, and in the photograph submitted by the applicant that is in the City’s file for Conditional Use Permit No. 207 and Environmental Assessment No. 720. The term "existing antenna support structure and array" and its variants, therefore, does not include any parts, elements, components or other features of the antenna support structure and/or antenna array that are not depicted on the plan submitted on April 24, 2000, or in the above-mentioned photograph. However, if any changes have been made to the antennae or the support structure after the applicant submitted the plan on April 24, 2000 and before the date of the ruling of the United States District Court on January 9, 2002, the applicant shall submit a revised plan depicting the antenna support structure and the number and configuration of the existing antennae located thereon within (90) ninety days of the date of the City’s final action on this application. This plan shall be retained in the City’s files and used as a basis for determining compliance with the conditions of approval for this project.

B. The site for the proposed use has adequate space for off-street parking of service vehicles and relates to streets and highways sufficient to carry the type and quantity of traffic generated by the subject use because the subject property is served by Oceanaire Drive, which is a public residential street. Aside from normal residential traffic associated with the existing house, the only additional traffic expected to result from the proposed project is an occasional service vehicle, and would rarely involve large trucks or other equipment that could adversely affect local traffic for any extended period of time. Any adverse effects of any additional traffic are mitigated by the conditions of approval imposed by this approval.

C. The City Council is approving the subject commercial use at this specific location in order to comply with the order of the United States District Court issued on January 9, 2002. If that order is reversed, the City Council hereby reserves the right to vacate this Resolution and decision and reinstate its prior decision denying the conditional use permit or, in the alternative, to reopen the hearing. In approving the conditional use permit, conditions are being imposed as part of this approval to reduce the impacts of the antenna tower and the commercial use on the surrounding residential neighborhood to the extent feasible and in compliance with the order of the United States District Court. Although service personnel would visit the site periodically, any impacts related to the maintenance and operation of the existing antennae would be very minor and have no significant adverse effects on surrounding properties. The existing antennae are visible from surrounding homes in the Del Cerro community. The approval of this proposal will be conditioned to require the existing antenna support structure and array to be painted to blend better into the background sky and foliage, and no future changes to the height, size, number, location or configuration of the antennae will be permitted without an amendment to this conditional use permit that is approved by the Planning Commission.

D. Any issues related to interference impacts upon electronic and other types of equipment, and actual or perceived effects upon human health, are strictly within the purview of the FCC, since Telecommunications Act of 1996 prohibits the City from "[regulating] the placement, construction, and modification of personal wireless service facilities on the basis of the environmental effects of radio frequency emissions to the extent that such facilities comply with the [FCC’s] regulations concerning such emissions."

E. The required finding that, if the site of the proposed use is within any of the overlay control districts established by RPVDC Chapter 17.40 (Overlay Control Districts), the proposed use complies with all applicable requirements of that chapter, is not applicable because the subject property is not located within any of the overlay control districts established by RPVDC Chapter 17.40.

F. Conditions of approval, which the City Council finds to be necessary to protect the health, safety and general and which comply with the order of the United States District Court, have been imposed and include (but are not limited to) painting of the existing antennae support structure and array; maintenance of existing screening foliage on the property; prohibiting any further modifications to the existing antennae support structure and array without first obtaining approval of a modification to this conditional use permit; limiting regular maintenance hours to 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday; precluding illumination of the antenna tower, requiring the applicant to obtain and maintain a valid business license; and reviewing the project for compliance with all conditions of approval within six (6) months of the date of the City’s final action on the application. These conditions are imposed through the City’s authority over placement, construction and modification of personal wireless service facilities, as expressly reserved to local government under the Telecommunications Act of 1996 and in compliance with the order of the United State District Court in the case of Abrams v. Rancho Palos Verdes.

G. The required findings that no existing or planned tower can accommodate the applicant's proposed antenna or proposed service area, or that the proposed tower cannot be located on the site of an existing or planned tower, are not applicable because the proposed project does not involve the construction or placement of a new antenna tower.

Section 3: This application is consistent with some provisions of the City’s Wireless Communications Antenna Development Guidelines in that it was heard by the Planning Commission and City Council within the time lines established by the State’s Permit Streamlining Act and CEQA (Guideline No. 1). Although the City’s Antenna Guidelines express a preference for existing, non-single-family structures as antenna sites (Guideline No. 2), installations on single-family residences are not prohibited and have been approved previously elsewhere in the City. However, this approval is not consistent with other provisions of the City’s Antenna Guidelines.

Section 4: The City Council finds that the approval of Conditional Use Permit No. 207—as conditioned—is consistent with the order of the United States District Court and the local zoning authority reserved to the City of Rancho Palos Verdes by the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (47 U.S.C. 332(c)(7)) for the following reasons:

  1. The conditional approval of Conditional Use Permit No. 207 "[does] not unreasonably discriminate among providers of functionally equivalent services…and [does] not prohibit or have the effect of prohibiting the provision of personal wireless services" (47 U.S.C. 332(c)(7), subsections (B)(i)(I) and (II)). In reviewing all of the applications to provide personal wireless services on other residentially-zoned property within the City, the City has applied consistently its regulations to these facilities so as to modify or deny applications that do or will have adverse visual, aesthetic or other impacts upon surrounding properties. The instant application is being approved pursuant to the order of the United States District Court with conditions requiring the implementation of measures to screen the appearance of the existing antenna support structure and array to the extent feasible and consistent with the order of the United States District Court so as to avoid modifying the size, type, number or location of existing antennae. The City’s conditional approval of this specific proposal allows the applicant to provide wireless communications services. Accordingly, the conditional approval of this particular application does not result in a ban or prohibition of, or have the effect of prohibiting, the placement of these types of facilities within the City of Rancho Palos Verdes.
  2. The application for Conditional Use Permit No. 207 was acted upon by the City "within a reasonable period of time after the request [was] duly filed with [the City], taking into account the nature and scope of such request" (47 U.S.C. 332(c)(7), subsection (B)(ii)). The public hearing to reconsider this application was held less than within thirty (30) days after the decision was rendered by the United States District Court in the case of Abrams v. Rancho Palos Verdes. This application has been processed by the City in a timely fashion and in accordance with the time lines established by the State Permit Streamlining Act and CEQA, and the Telecommunications Act.

  3. In conditionally approving the application for Conditional Use Permit No. 207, the City has not "[regulated] the placement, construction, and modification of personal wireless service facilities on the basis of the environmental effects of radio frequency emissions to the extent that such facilities comply with the [Federal Communications] Commission's regulations concerning such emissions" (47 U.S.C. 332(c)(7), subsection (B)(iv)). Although interference and radio frequency emissions were raised as issues of concern to surrounding residents at the public hearing and in correspondence to the City, none of the required conditions of approval are in response to these concerns. Instead, these modifications are imposed only to address the aesthetic impacts of the existing antenna support structure and array upon the surrounding neighborhood. City Staff advised the Planning Commission and the City Council that neither body could consider any environmental effects of emissions that comply with FCC regulations, including purported impacts upon health or alleged interference with television reception. The City Council relied upon that advice and the provisions of the Act and, therefore, has not based its decision to conditionally approve the proposed project in any respect upon any actual or perceived environmental effects attributable to radio frequency emissions. Rather, the conditional approval regulates the aesthetic impacts and land use compatibility issues traditionally addressed through the exercise of local governmental police powers.

Section 5: The time within which the judicial review of the decision reflected in this Resolution, if available, must be sought is governed by Section 1094.6 of the California Code of Civil Procedure and other applicable short periods of limitation. Pursuant to the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (47 U.S.C. 332(c)(7)(B)(v)), any person adversely affected by the City’s final action in this matter may, within thirty (30) days after such action, commence an action in any court of competent jurisdiction.

Section 6: For the foregoing reasons and based on the information and findings included in the Staff Report, the testimony and evidence presented at the public hearings before the Planning Commission and the City Council, the Minutes and the other records of this proceeding on file with the City, the City Council of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes hereby approves Conditional Use Permit No. 207, thereby approving the commercial use of existing antennae and related support structures and equipment on the site of a single-family residence, located at 44 Oceanaire Drive in the Del Cerro community, subject to the conditions contained in Exhibit 'A', attached hereto and made a part hereof by this reference, which are necessary to protect the public health, safety and welfare, to comply with the order of the United States District Court issued on January 9, 2002. However, If that order is reversed, the City Council hereby reserves the right to vacate this Resolution and decision and reinstate its prior decision denying the conditional use permit or, in the alternative, to reopen the hearing.

PASSED, APPROVED, AND ADOPTED this 19th day of March 2002.


_______________________
John McTaggart, Mayor

ATTEST:


____________________
Jo Purcell, City Clerk

State of California)
County of Los Angeles) ss
City of Rancho Palos Verdes)

I, JO PURCELL, City Clerk of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes, hereby certify that the above Resolution No. 2002-____ was duly and regularly passed and adopted by the said City Council at a regular meeting thereof held on March 19, 2002.


_________________________________
City Clerk


EXHIBIT 'A'
CONDITIONS OF APPROVAL
FOR CONDITIONAL USE PERMIT NO. 207
(44 Oceanaire Drive)

1. Within ninety (90) days following adoption of this Resolution, the applicant/property owner shall submit to the City a statement, in writing, that he has read, understands, and agrees to all conditions of approval contained in this Resolution. Failure to provide said written statement shall render this approval null and void.

2. This approval is for the use of existing antennae and related support structures and equipment on the site of a single-family residence in the Del Cerro community for commercial purposes, subject to full compliance with the conditions of approval contained in this Resolution. The Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement is authorized to make only minor modifications to the approved plans and any of the conditions of approval, and only if such modifications will achieve substantially the same results as would strict compliance with the approved plans and conditions. Otherwise, any substantive change, such as the enlargement of, expansion of or addition of new antennae or radiating elements to the existing antennae support structure and array, shall require approval of a revision to Conditional Use Permit No. 207 by the City Council and shall require a new and separate environmental review.

3. All project development on the site shall conform to the specific standards contained in these conditions of approval or, if not addressed herein, in the RS-2 district development standards of the City's Municipal Code.

4. Failure to comply with and adhere to any or all of these conditions of approval may be cause to revoke the approval of the project by the City Council after conducting a duly noticed public hearing on the matter.

5. If the necessary modifications to site and the antenna support structure and array, as specified by these conditions of approval, have not been made within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this application, approval of the project shall expire and be of no further effect unless, prior to expiration, a written request for extension is filed with the Department of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement and approved by the City Council.

6. In the event that any of these conditions conflict with any non-discretionary technical requirements of another permitting agency or City department, the stricter standard shall apply.

7. If any changes have been made to the antennae or the support structure after the applicant submitted the plan on April 24, 2000 and before the date of the ruling of the United States District Court on January 9, 2002, the applicant shall submit a revised plan depicting the antenna support structure and the number and configuration of the existing antennae located thereon within (90) ninety days of the date of the City’s final action on this application. This plan shall be retained in the City’s files and used as a basis for determining compliance with the conditions of approval for this project.

8. Within ninety (90) days of the date of the City’s final action on this permit, the applicant shall paint the entire antenna support structure and array in a neutral color—such as gray, gray-green or gray-blue—that will blend with the background foliage and sky. The applicant shall provide the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement with a selection of possible colors for approval prior to the painting of the antenna support structure and array. The applicant shall be continuously responsible for maintaining the antenna support structure and array in the approved paint color.

9. No additional antennae may be added to the existing antenna support structure without prior City approval of a revision to this conditional use permit. Existing antennae on the antenna support structure may be removed and replaced for maintenance and repair purposes, but the replacement antenna(e) must be the same size (or smaller), same height (or lower), same type and same location as the antenna(e) they are replacing.

10. The existing tree in the rear yard of the subject property, as depicted in photographs of the property taken on March 14, 2002 and kept in the City’s files, provides screening for the existing antenna tower. This tree shall be maintained by the applicant in a size and fullness equivalent to the March 14, 2002 photographs so as to continue to provide this same degree of screening. In the event that this tree dies or is felled by an act of God or any other intentional or unintentional act, it must be replaced by another tree of an evergreen variety that is at least a twenty-four-inch (24") box size tree.

11. Except in case of emergency, regular maintenance of the antennae and related support equipment and structures shall only occur between the hours of 8:00 AM and 5:00 PM, Monday through Friday.

12. All service vehicles related to the maintenance of the antennae shall be parked off-street in the driveway or garage of the house. No more than two (2) service vehicles are allowed on the site at any time.

13. The support equipment for the antennae on the site, including air conditioning units, shall not generate noise levels in excess of 65 dBA, as measured at the property line of the subject property. Any sound attenuation measures to achieve this standard shall be the responsibility of the applicant, and shall be subject to the review and approval of the Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement.

14. No lights may be placed upon the antenna tower, nor may it be otherwise illuminated in any manner.

15. The operation of antennae on the site shall at all times comply with the requirements, standards and regulations of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

16. Within ninety (90) days of the City’s final action on this application, the applicant shall obtain a business license from the City. A valid City business license shall be maintained at all times while commercial radio transmissions occur from the property.

17. At approximately six (6) months from the date of the City’s final action on this application, the City Council shall review the project for conformance with the conditions of approval, and determine if any conditions of approval need to be added, deleted or modified, or if the permit should be revoked. Within the initial 6-month permit period, the applicant shall be responsible for completing all of the site and use modifications described in this Resolution. Failure to fulfill these conditions may lead to the revocation of this permit during the 6-month review process by the City Council.

18. If this approval is challenged in court, the applicant shall defend the City and all of its officers, agents and employees, with legal counsel that is acceptable to the City Council, and shall indemnify and hold the City and its officers, agents and employees harmless from any damages, attorney’s fees and court costs arising from said legal proceeding.


REGULAR BUSINESS:





14. City Advisory Boards: Appointment of Traffic Committee Members; and, Interview of Parks & Recreation and Equestrian Committee Applicants. (Purcell)

Recommendation: (1) Appoint seven members to the Traffic Committee: Four members with a term of office until March 2, 2004; and three members with a term of office until March 7, 2006. (2) Set a date to interview the Chair. (3) Set a date to interview Parks & Recreation Committee and Equestrian Committee applicants.

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR & CITY COUNCILMEMBERS

FROM: ADMIN. SERVICES DIRECTOR/CITY CLERK

DATE: MARCH 19, 2002

SUBJECT: CITY ADVISORY BOARDS: APPOINTMENT OF TRAFFIC COMMITTEE MEMBERS; AND, INTERVIEW OF PARKS & RECREATION AND EQUESTRIAN COMMITTEE APPLICANTS

RECOMMENDATION

(1) Appoint seven members to the Traffic Committee: Four members with a term of office until March 2, 2004; and, three members with a term of office until March 7, 2006. (2) Set a date to interview the Chair. (3) Set a date to interview Parks & Recreation Committee and Equestrian Committee applicants.

INTRODUCTION

Appointment of the Traffic Committee members will complete the recruitment and interview process for this seven-member advisory board that began late last year. Remaining to be interviewed and appointed is the Recreation & Parks Committee, the Equestrian Committee and the View Restoration Commission. Lastly, the deadline for submitting applications for the Emergency Preparedness Committee is March 22nd. and, as of this writing, the City is in receipt of eight applications for this committee. Those applications will be presented to the City Council at the April 2nd meeting at which time staff will be requesting the City Council to set an interview date for those applicants.

BACKGROUND

Traffic Committee: Appointment of Members

The City is in receipt of 14 applications from residents who are interested in serving on the seven-member Traffic Committee. On Saturday, March 9th the City Council interviewed ten candidates for that committee; two of the candidates (Brown and Petrauschke) did not show up for the interview and, as of this writing, staff has been unable to make contact with Mr. Petrauschke. Mr. Brown, however, has been contacted and has stated an interest in being considered for the Recreation & Parks Committee. Messrs. Lembeck and Stephenson are "crossover" candidates from the Planning Commission interviews.

Staff has prepared a ballot listing all of these candidates.

Parks & Recreation & Equestrian Committee: Setting Date to Interview Applicants

Fourteen applicants have applied for the seven-member Recreation & Parks Committee; five applications have been received for the nine-member Equestrian Committee. This number of applicants will take approximately six hours to interview and Council needs to set a date(s) for the interviews.

CONCLUSION

The interview and appointment process for the City’s various advisory boards continues, and the Council now needs to set a date to interview the Recreation & Parks and Equestrian Committee applicants.

Respectfully submitted,
Jo Purcell

Reviewed:
Les Evans, City Manager

TRAFFIC COMMITTEE

Aubrey, Lisabeth (Libby)

29433 Indian Valley Road #D
Home: 541-9922
E-mail: Libby.Aubrey@verizon.net
Fax: Same as Home

Brown, Stuart

Other choices:
2nd Recreation & Parks Committee
3rd Planning Commission

30310 Via Rivera
Home: 377-8983
E-mail: sbrown8983@aol.com
Fax: Same as home

Covey, Barbara L. (Incumbent)

Other choices:
2nd Recreation & Parks Committee
3rd Planning Commission

2742 San Ramon Drive
Home: 833-6740
E-mail: barbarac24@yahoo.com

DeLong, Ken

6940 Maycroft Drive
Home: 541-8369 Bus. 377-2426
E-mail: Ken.Delong@verizon.net
Fax: 310-377-7496

Ford, Maureen

*1st Choice: Proposed Emergency Committee
3rd Recreation & Parks

30659 Ganado Drive
Home: 377-8618 Bus. 544-4959
No E-mail
Fax: same as home (call first)

Hildebrand, Barry J. (Incumbent)

3560 Vigilance Drive
Home: 377-0051
E-mail: BJHilde@AOL.com
Fax: Same as Home (call first)

Iseda, Charlotte

6781 Verde Ridge Road
Home: 377-7154
E-mail: kb6fxs@aol.com

Jones, James S.
(Incumbent)

2747 Vista Mesa Drive
Home: 831-3372
E-mail: jjbanjo@juno.com
Fax: Same as home

Petrauschke, Robert H.

Other choices:
2nd View Restoration Commission
3rd Finance Advisory Committee

6406 LeBlanc Place
Home: 377-1618
E-mail: rpetra@earthlink.net

Schurmer, William W. (Incumbent)

23468 Searaven Drive
Home: 377-0913
E-mail: BSCHURM@aol.com
Fax: Same As Home

Shannon, Brent

2nd choice is Recreation & Parks Committee

30152 Via Borica
Home: 544-5014 Bus. 753-2159
E-mail: shannongroup@msn.com

Shepherd, Ava (Incumbent)

3117 Dianora Drive
Home: 377-6906 Bus. 213-922-5254
E-mail: jordana@mta.net
Fax: 310-544-1719

Wall, Thomas Edward (Incumbent)

2nd Choice is Planning Commission

27928 Alaflora Drive
Home: 519-7683 Bus. 519-7908
E-mail: Denna98@Yahoo.com
Fax: 310-519-9352



15. Request to Extend the Use of Temporary Personnel. (Petru)

Recommendation: ADOPT RESOLUTION NO. 2002-__, A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES REQUESTING THE BOARD OF ADMINISTRATION OF THE PUBLIC EMPLOYEES RETIREMENT SYSTEM (CalPERS) TO APPROVE AN EXTENSION OF ALLOWED EMPLOYMENT FOR A RETIRED EMPLOYEE PURSUANT TO THE CALIFORNIA GOVERNMENT CODE.

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND MEMBERS OF THE CITY COUNCIL

FROM: ASSISTANT CITY MANAGER

DATE: MARCH 19, 2002

SUBJECT: REQUEST TO EXTEND THE USE OF TEMPORARY PERSONNEL

RECOMMENDATION

Adopt Resolution No. 2002 - ; Requesting the Board of Administration of the Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) to approve an extension of allowed employment for a retired employee pursuant to the California Government Code.

BACKGROUND

Over the last few years, the City has had two high level vacancies in the Public Works Department. Despite the City’s best efforts to recruit for these positions, including making job offers to several qualified individuals, the Deputy Director of Public Works and Senior Engineer positions have proven to be very difficult to fill. The City has used contract employees to keep up with the Department’s workload, but this arrangement is costly and does not address the management and supervisory needs of the Department.

On June 18, 2001, the City was fortunate to hire Donald Noble to fill the Deputy Director of Public Works position on an interim basis. Mr. Noble recently retired from the City of Huntington Beach, where he had worked in the Public Works Department for the previous 15 years. Although he is CalPERS retiree, Mr. Noble is able to work for the City pursuant to California Government Code Section 21551(h) which allows him to work up to 960 hours each calendar year without reinstatement from retirement or any loss of benefits (see attached). Mr. Noble worked less than 960 hours for the City in 2001 and is still under this limit for 2002.

DISCUSSION

The City successfully filled the Senior Engineer position in January 2001 with a regular full-time employee. Although the addition of this new employee has been of great benefit, the Public Works Department continues to require a Deputy Director with a high level of experience and knowledge to management a number of major capital improvement projects, as well as the day-to-day supervision of the Department’s other critical functions. In addition, the City would have insufficient time to complete a new recruitment for this position before Mr. Noble would reach his 960 hour limit for 2002.

Ever since he came on board, Mr. Noble has proven himself to be a valuable asset to the Public Works Department. The City would like to continue its relationship with him until we can find a permanent employee for the Deputy position. Fortunately, the same Government Code Section that allows a retiree to work part time for a CalPERS agency also allows the City to request the CalPERS Board of Administration to grant a one-time exception to the 960 hour rule. If requested by the City and approved by the CalPERS Board of Administration, the retired employee would be allowed to work for the City for one full year. Mr. Noble is amenable to this arrangement.

CONCLUSION

The City has an opportunity to extend the services of the interim Deputy Director of Public Works for the full year in 2002. Based on the Public Works Department’s current workload, staffing and recruitment situation, this would be highly beneficial to the City. The extension would allow the City to leverage our existing resources until such time that we could find and retain a regular full-time employee to fill this position on a permanent basis.

ALTERNATIVE

Do not request an extension of temporary employment from the CalPERS Board, thereby limiting Mr. Noble’s work for the City to 960 hours during 2002.

FISCAL IMPACT

Approval of the City’s request by the Board of Administration would not have a neutral impact on the City’s finances because the current personnel schedule for the Public Works Department already includes funding (salary and benefits) for a Deputy Director of Public Works position.

Respectfully submitted:
Carolynn Petru, Assistant City Manager

Reviewed,
Les Evans, City Manager


RESOLUTION NO. 2002 -

A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES REQUESTING THE BOARD OF ADMINISTRATION OF THE PUBLIC EMPLOYEES’ RETIREMENT SYSTEM TO APPROVE AN EXTENSION OF ALLOWED EMPLOYMENT FOR A RETIRED EMPLOYEE PURSUANT TO THE CALIFORNIA GOVERNMENT CODE

WHEREAS, over the last three years, the City of Rancho Palos Verdes had two high level vacancies in the Public Works Department (Deputy Director of Public Works and Senior Engineer) that proved to be very difficult to fill; and,

WHEREAS, California Government Code Section 21151(h) allows a city to hire a retiree from the California Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) to a position requiring specialized skills on a temporary basis. The retired person will not be subject to reinstatement from retirement or loss of benefits so long as such employment does not exceed 960 hours in a calendar year; and,

WHEREAS, on June 18, 2001, in order to assure the continued efficient operation of the Public Works Department, the City hired Mr. Donald R. Noble, a CalPERS retiree who has significant experience as a public works employee, to serve as interim Deputy Director of Public Works. Pursuant to California Government Code requirements, Mr. Noble worked less than 960 hours for the City during 2001; and,

WHEREAS, the City filled the vacant Senior Engineer position in January 2001 with a regular full-time employee. In addition to the need to provide immediate training for this new employee, the Public Works Department continues to require an interim Deputy Director of Public Works with a high level of experience and knowledge to management a number of major capital improvement projects, as well as day-to-day supervision of the Department’s other critical functions.

WHEREAS, Mr. Noble’s service to the City in 2002 has not yet exceeded the 960 hour limitation set forth in Government Code Section 21151(h). However, based on his current work schedule, he would exceed this limitation at the end of June 2002. In addition, based on the City’s past experience, this would not allow sufficient time for the City to complete a new recruitment for a permanent Deputy Director of Public Works.

NOW, THEREFORE, THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES DOES HEREBY FIND, DETERMINE AND RESOLVE AS FOLLOWS:

Section 1: Pursuant to the requirements of California Government Code Section 21151(h), the City of Rancho Palos Verdes requests that the Board of Administration of the Public Employees’ Retirement System allow the employment extension for Donald R. Noble with the City of Rancho Palos Verdes for an additional period not to exceed a total of one (1) year.

Section 2: The City Clerk shall certify to the adoption of this resolution and shall transmit a conformed copy to the Board of Administration of the Public Employees’ Retirement System.

PASSED, APPROVED and ADOPTED this 19th day of March 2002.


_____________________
MAYOR

ATTEST:


_______________________
CITY CLERK

State of California)
County of Los Angeles) ss
City of Rancho Palos Verdes)

I, Jo Purcell, City Clerk of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes, hereby certify that the above Resolution No. 2002- was duly and regularly passed and adopted by the said City Council at a regular meeting thereof held on March 19, 2002.


____________________
City Clerk



16. Modification of Rule of Procedure 3.2 to Eliminate Rescheduling of Meetings on Election Dates other than City Election Dates. (Stern)

Recommendation: (1) Modify existing Rule of Procedure 3.2 (Regular Meetings) subpart to 1 so that the City Council does not automatically change its regular meeting date when there is an election, but instead only does so when there is a City Council election. (2) Consider INTRODUCTION of ORDINANCE NO. __ OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES ESTABLISHING REGULAR MEETING DAYS AND AMENDING CHAPTER 2.04 OF THE RANCHO PALOS VERDES MUNICIPAL CODE.

TO: Honorable Mayor and Councilmembers

FROM: Douglas W. Stern, Mayor Pro Tem

DATE: March 19, 2002

SUBJECT: Modification of Rule of Procedure 3.2 to Eliminate Rescheduling of Meetings on Election Dates other than City Election Dates

RECOMMENDATION:

Modify existing Rule of Procedure 3.2 (Regular Meetings) subpart to 1 so that the City Council does not automatically change its regular meeting date when there is an election, but instead only does so when there is a city council election.

The suggested change is set forth below in bold and underlined:

A. When an official election of Rancho Palos Verdes City Council Members is conducted in the City on the first or third Tuesday of any month, the meeting shall be held on the next succeeding day, which is not a holiday.

BACKGROUND:

Rule of Procedure 3.2 establishes schedule of the Regular Meetings of the City Council. It provides:

3.2 Regular Meetings

The Council shall meet in the City Council Chambers located at Fred Hesse Community Park, 29301 Hawthorne Boulevard, for all regular meetings. Regular meetings of the City Council shall be held on the first and third Tuesday of each month at the hour of seven p.m. in the Council Chambers except as follows:

A. When an official election is conducted in the City on the first or third Tuesday of any month, the meeting shall be held on the next succeeding day, which is not a holiday.

DISCUSSION:

At the present time the Rules of Procedure call for Regular Meetings of the City Council to take place the first and third Tuesday of each month. However, it also provides that the meeting is rescheduled to the following Wednesday when there is any official election, whether or not there is any city election. As a result, the Council, staff and the public must rearrange their respective schedules to participate in the Council meetings. I believe that this is disruptive to all involved, and not justified. It has, at times, proven to be difficult to find dates convenient to Council members, as our March 11, 2002 meeting date reflects. (Our regularly scheduled meeting was to be Tuesday, March 5, 2002. Instead, due to calendar conflicts, we were delayed nearly one week in rescheduling that date.)

This is disruptive for the community that is interested in participating at or viewing our meetings. Whenever we reschedule a date, we lose the benefit of predictability that allows residents to know when they might attend, or watch our meeting on cable TV. I think it very important to try to minimize the rescheduling of meetings, to avoid the confusion that this causes the public. I think it is a virtue to have a predictable schedule so that interested persons can know when to watch their City Council. Additionally, as the recent March 4, 2002 meeting also shows, at times when we reschedule our meetings, the rescheduled date is not a date when the meeting can be broadcast live to our residents. I think it is important to make our meetings as available to the public on a live basis as possible.

Finally, I believe it is disruptive to the even flow of business that staff must prepare and bring to us for action. Although I can not speak to this with any degree of background, it seems that the more we vary from the established schedule, the greater the difficulty staff has in making sure that matters are timely attended to, and the more uneven the work-flow.

Finally, I see no contrary virtue in not holding our meetings on the regularly appointed date. With the exception of those dates when there is a city election, we can easily conduct the business of the city on our regularly schedule Tuesday dates.

Respectfully submitted,
Douglas W. Stern,
Mayor Pro Tem

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR & CITY COUNCILMEMBERS

FROM: ADMIN. SERVICES DIRECTOR/CITY CLERK

DATE: MARCH 19, 2002

SUBJECT: MEETINGS ON ELECTION DATES

RECOMMENDATION

After consideration of Councilman Stern’s proposal, determine whether to change the Rules of Procedure and also the Municipal Code as outlined below.

DISCUSSION

If the City Council approves Councilman Stern’s recommendation to change the Council Rules of Procedure to eliminate rescheduling of meetings on election dates other than for City elections, it will also be necessary to amend Chapter 2.04 of the Municipal Code.

Staff has prepared a proposed ordinance Establishing Regular Meeting Days and Amending Chapter 2.04 of the Rancho Palos Verdes Municipal Code to read as follows:

Section 1.Title 2, Chapter 2.04 Section 2.04.020, Paragraph A of the Rancho Palos Verdes Municipal Code is amended to read:

"A. Only when a Rancho Palos Verdes Municipal election is conducted in the City on the first or third Tuesday of any month, shall the City Council meeting be held on the next succeeding day which is not a holiday."

Respectfully submitted,
Jo Purcell

Reviewed,
Les Evans


ORDINANCE NO.

AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES ESTABLISHING REGULAR MEETING DAYS AND AMENDING CHAPTER 2.04 OF THE RANCHO PALOS VERDES MUNICIPAL CODE

WHEREAS, The City Council of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes has determined that changing the meeting dates of City Council meetings in response to elections other than City elections is disruptive to the conduct and scheduling of City business; and

WHEREAS, the City Council is desirous of keeping the schedule of City Council meetings as undisturbed as possible;

NOW, THEREFORE, the City Council of the City of Rancho Palos Verdes hereby ordains as follows:

Section 1. Title 2, Chapter 2.04, Section 2.04.020, Paragraph "A" of the Rancho Palos Verdes Municipal Code is amended to read:

A. Only when a Rancho Palos Verdes Municipal election is conducted in the City on the first or third Tuesday of the month, shall the City Council meeting be held on the next succeeding day which is not a holiday."

PASSED, APPROVED and ADOPTED on March 19, 2002.


____________________
Mayor

Attest:


______________________
City Clerk



17. Construction Activity at 5888 Mossbank Drive. (Mihranian)

Recommendation: Receive and file information regarding the construction activity at 5888 Mossbank Drive.

TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND MEMBERS OF THE PLANNING COMMISSION AND HONORABLE

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PLANNING, BUILDING AND CODE ENFORCEMENT

DATE: MARCH 19, 2002

SUBJECT: CONSTRUCTION AT 5888 MOSSBANK DRIVE

Staff Coordinator: Ara Michael Mihranian, AICP, Senior Planner

RECOMMENDATION:

Receive and file information regarding the construction activity at 5888 Mossbank Drive.

PROJECT BACKGROUND

On February 8, 2000, the Planning Commission, with a vote of 7-0, adopted P.C. Resolution No. 2000-5, conditionally approving Variance No. 451, Height Variation No. 885 and Grading Permit No. 2108. Said approval allows the construction of a new 4,292 square foot single-family residence at a proposed height of twenty-six (26) feet, as measured from finished grade (at elevation 83’) to the top of the highest roof ridgeline (at elevation 109’) on property located at 5888 Mossbank Drive. Additionally, said approval also allows an encroachment into the required rear yard by 9’-4" and allows 1,675 cubic yards of associated grading. Soon after approval, building plans were submitted to Building and Safety for "plan check" review, and on April 24, 2001, building permits were issued.

DISCUSSION

Around the end of January 2002, a neighbor downhill from the subject property informed Staff that the construction of the driveway retaining walls, oriented toward the canyon below, appeared to be significantly higher than what the Planning Commission originally approved. As a result, Staff went out to the site to inspect the height of the driveway retaining walls and determined that the retaining walls were not constructed in substantial compliance with the plans approved by the Planning Commission.

According to the site plan approved by the Planning Commission, the driveway retaining walls are to conform with the slope of the driveway from the street of access (Mossbank Drive), thereby ranging in height from 6" to 6’-8". Furthermore, in order to mitigate visual impacts to the properties downhill from the subject property, the driveway retaining walls were conditioned to be designed as two separate walls, with a minimum three (3) foot gap between the upper wall and the lower wall, to provide a landscape planter that would be used to visually soften the appearance of the concrete walls.

In response to Staff’s determination that the driveway retaining walls do not comply with the Planning Commission’s approved plan, the property owner was advised of his two legal options for correcting the situation. He could reduce the height of the driveway retaining walls or he could submit an application revision, for consideration by the Planning Commission at a duly noticed public hearing, to allow an increase in the height of the driveway retaining walls.

The property owner originally opted to prepare an application revision to allow an increase in the height of the retaining walls until Staff informed him that the recommendation to the Planning Commission would be to deny such a request. Staff informed the property owner that when the Planning Commission originally considered the project applications, Staff identified a concern with the visual appearance of the driveway retaining walls and recommended imposing conditions on the project that would limit the height of the retaining walls as well as require specific landscaping to buffer the physical appearance of the walls. Therefore, a request to allow a modification to the height of the retaining walls would be contrary to the Planning Commission’s intent of minimizing the visual impacts to neighboring properties. As such, the property owner decided to withdraw his revised application request and opted to modify the height of the driveway retaining walls to the height approved by the Planning Commission. Furthermore, the property owner informed Staff that he would immediately install the appropriate landscaping, as conditioned by the City, to visually screen the retaining wall.

Approximately two weeks later, Staff was informed that the driveway retaining walls had not been revised yet and that construction activity continued on the subject property. As such, on February 6, 2002, the Building Official conducted a site visit and issued a "stop work order." At that time, the property owner’s general contractor was told that no construction activity shall occur on the property until the retaining walls have been constructed in full compliance with the Planning Commission’s approval. The general contractor informed the Building Official that if all work stops on the project site, a precarious situation may occur since unsupported cuts exist on the site. In response, the Building Official informed the general contractor that work may only continue on those portions of the project site that will support the excavated cut.

This past week, in response to calls to Mayor McTaggart and Councilman Gardiner from neighboring residents concerned that work was continuing on the site without any reduction in the wall height, Staff contacted the property owner and reiterated that no work is allowed on the site except for the retention of unsupported excavation. Furthermore, the property owner has been told that no work related to the structure’s framing or foundation will be allowed until the driveway retaining walls are reduced so that they are in conformance with the Planning Commission’s approved plan.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

Attached to this report are the Planning Commission Staff Report, Resolution, Conditions of Approval and minutes from the February 8, 2000 meeting for review by the City Council. Furthermore, the project geology and soils reports are also attached to this report.

The property owner is aware of this agenda item and will be in attendance at tonight’s meeting to answer any questions the Council may have. Furthermore, Staff has also informed the neighbors who have expressed concern with the height of the driveway retaining walls about this agenda item.

Respectfully submitted:
Joel Rojas, aicp, Director of Planning, Building and Code Enforcement

Reviewed,
Les Evans, City Manager

ATTACHMENTS

  • P.C. Staff Report – February 8, 2000
  • P.C. Resolution No. 2000-5
  • Project Conditions of Approval
  • Reduced set of Architectural Plans
  • P.C. Minutes
  • Geology/Soil Reports

CLOSED SESSION REPORT:



ORAL CITY COUNCIL REPORTS: (This section designated to oral reports from councilmembers to report on Council assignments.)



ADJOURNMENT: Adjourn to a time and place certain only if you wish to meet prior to the next regular meeting.


CLOSED SESSION AGENDA CHECKLIST


Based on Government Code Section 54954.5
(All Statutory References are to California Government Code Sections)


CONFERENCE WITH LEGAL COUNSEL

Existing Litigation:
G.C. 54956.9(a)

Name of Case: People of the State; City of Rancho Palos Verdes v. James A. Kay, Jr.

Case No: Los Angeles County Superior Court Case No. YC 037398)

Name of Case: People of the State; City of Rancho Palos Verdes v. Mark J. Abrams

Case No: California Court of Appeal Case No. B151086

Name of Case: Mark J. Abrams v. City of Rancho Palos Verdes

Case No: United States District Court Case No. 00-09071 SVW (RNBx)


PERSONNEL

Public Employee Performance Evaluation
G.C. 54957

Title: City Manager