Rancho Palos Verdes City Council
   

OCTOBER 3, 2006 RANCHO RANCHO PALOS VERDES CITY COUNCIL AGENDA - NEIGHBORHOOD BEAUTIFICATION GRANT AWARDS (CYCLE 17) OCTOBER 3, 2006 RANCHO RANCHO PALOS VERDES CITY COUNCIL AGENDA -NEIGHBORHOOD BEAUTIFICATION GRANT AWARDS (CYCLE 17) OCTOBER 3, 2006 RANCHO RANCHO PALOS VERDES CITY COUNCIL AGENDA -NEIGHBORHOOD BEAUTIFICATION GRANT AWARDS (CYCLE 17)



TO: HONORABLE MAYOR AND MEMBERS OF THE CITY COUNCIL

FROM: DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC WORKS

DATE: OCTOBER 3, 2006

SUBJECT: NEIGHBORHOOD BEAUTIFICATION GRANT AWARDS (CYCLE 17)

Staff Coordinator: Pam Mitchell, Administrative Staff Assistant

Attachemnt: Beautification Grants_Exhibit A.pdf
Attachemnt: Beautification Grants_Exhibit B.pdf

RECOMMENDATION

1. Approve forty-eight grant applications for the Neighborhood Beautification Program totaling $177,653.

2. Deny one grant application for reasons that the requested improvements have
been denied by the City in the past. Rancho Crest Community Association is
requesting funds for installation of white rail fencing which the City has denied in
the past out of respect for our neighboring City, Rolling Hills Estates, who have a
“Gentleman’s Agreement” with our City that we will not erect this type of fence in
RPV.

BACKGROUND

Since 1989 the City has annually awarded Neighborhood Beautification Grants. The program awards funds directly to members of Homeowners’ Associations, other neighborhood groups, schools and libraries to construct beautification projects. The program is funded from revenues from the City’s Curbside Recycling Program. Since
1989, grants totaling over $1.37 million have been awarded and of that amount $327,150 have been matching funds by the HOA’s & neighborhood groups.

The benefit of this project is to attract the resident investment in the community and maintain the highest quality of life possible

The base grant amount is $3,000, and the program includes a matching component of up to $1,500. Under the program the maximum grant amount is $ 4,500. In May, the Public Works Department sent notices to the Homeowners Associations, Community Associations, and all libraries and schools within the City. A total of forty-nine applications have been received.

Grant recipients may request up to 2/3 of the grant amount upon award. This enables grantees to purchase supplies and materials.

 

DISCUSSION

Upon review of the forty-nine applications staff recommends that forty-eight applications be approved. The grants are summarized in Exhibit “A”.

The most common grant request is for landscape improvements. However, grants are also requested for other improvements such as stamped asphalt, landscape lighting, entry signs, new irrigation systems and painting. Many of the projects will require a Public Works and /or a Planning Department permit. Staff from both departments took extra care to spell out for applicants the requirements for the no cost permit needed.

Some characteristics of the applications recommended for approval:

Type of organization
- HOA’s: 41
- Community Groups: 3
- Schools: 3
- Rec. & Parks Dist. 2

Subject of grants
- Landscape improvements along the street
- Tree planting
- Street stamped asphalt
- Landscape lighting
- Entry signs
- New irrigation systems
- Block wall, stucco/paint
- Fencing – white rail
- Fountain
- Replace worn doors
- Walking Path
- Synthetic Turf for playground

Have they applied before?
- 4 out of 49 are first time applicants
- 8 out of 49 have received awards, 3 or fewer times
- 37 out of 49 have received 4 or more grants

How much did they ask for?
- 24 requested $3,000 plus the $1,500 matching
- 2 requested $3,000 plus matching funds less than $1,500
- 9 requested $3,000 only with no matching funds
- 10 requested less than $3,000
- 4 schools/parks & recreation requested funds plus matching 100%

 

One of the two documents required for submittal with all applications is minutes of a Homeowner’s Association meeting at which time the application is approved. Because many of our HOA’s do not hold regular meetings, 43 of the applications do not have minutes, however, those that do not have instead produced proposals with the appropriate signatures from the office holders of their association.

A second requirement is bids from two contractors for the proposed project. It was brought to the City’s attention by many groups that they have difficulty obtaining more than one bid. Out of the 49 applications recommended for approval, 15 include only one bid. In each case, however, staff did review the application and found that the costs are fair and reasonable.

Upon completion of the projects staff will visit each location and take photos of the completed work. Outstanding improvements will be forwarded to City Council for consideration of meritous acclaim. A letter of appreciation will be sent to all applicants and a letter of recognition to those with outstanding projects at a future City Council meeting.

CONCLUSION

Adopting the staff recommendation will award forty-eight Beautification grants. Award letters will be sent to the applicants, and upon request up to 2/3 of the requested funding will be forwarded. Upon receipt of a final invoice for the work a check remitting the balance will be issued directly to the Applicant.

FISCAL IMPACT

The adopted FY 06-07 budget includes adequate funding for the recommended action awards grants totaling $177,653.

Respectfully Submitted,

Jim Bell
Director of Public Works

Reviewed by:

Les Evans, City Manager

Attachments:
Exhibit “A” Application Summary (Cycle 17)
Exhibit “B” Grant Award Amount by HOA
Exhibit “C” Typical projects (photos) applied for