City Council Minutes 11/20/2001 RPV, City, Council, Minutes, 2001, Meeting RPV City Council Minutes for the 11/20/2001 Meeting Rancho Palos Verdes City Council Minutes, November 20, 2001

 

 

M I N U T E S

 

     RANCHO PALOS VERDES CITY COUNCIL

 

   REGULAR MEETING

 

NOVEMBER 20, 2001

 

 

The meeting was called to order at 6:00 P.M. by Mayor Lyon at Fred Hesse Community Park, 29301 Hawthorne Boulevard and was immediately recessed to a closed session per the Brown Act Checklist.  At 7:00 P.M. the meeting reconvened

 

After the Pledge of Allegiance, roll call was answered as follows:

 

PRESENT:                        Ferraro, Gardiner, McTaggart, Stern, and Mayor Lyon

ABSENT:                        None

 

Also present were City Manager Les Evans; Assistant City Manager Carolynn Petru; City Attorney Carol Lynch; Director of Planning, Building, and Code Enforcement Joel Rojas; Director of Public Works Dean Allison; Director of Finance Dennis McLean; Deputy Public Works Director Don Noble; City Clerk/Administrative Services Director Jo Purcell; and, Deputy City Clerk/Recording Secretary Jackie Drasco.

 

RECYCLING DRAWING:

 

The winner from the last drawing was Santanu Basu, who will receive a check for $250, which represents a year of free refuse service.  Another card was selected.

 

APPROVAL OF AGENDA:

 

Councilman Stern moved, seconded by Mayor Pro Tem McTaggart, to approve the agenda, as presented.  Motion carried.

 

APPROVAL OF CONSENT CALENDAR:

 

Lois Larue, 3136 Barkentine Road, inquired about several items on the Register of Demands.

 

Mayor Lyon informed Ms. Larue that the Finance Director would be able to answer her questions.

 

Mayor Pro Tem McTaggart moved, seconded by Councilman Stern, to approve the Consent Calendar as follows:

 

Motion to waive full reading

 

Adopted 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 councilmembers after the reading of the title.

 

Engineering Services For Signal Design

 

(1)  Awarded a professional services contract to Willdan Associates for the design of the new traffic signal at Vallon Drive, in the amount of $11,755.  (2) Authorized staff to spend the contract amount plus an additional $1,245 for possible extra services for a total authorization of $13,000.  (3) Authorized the Mayor and the City Clerk to execute a contract with Willdan Associates, Inc.

 

Resol. No. 2001-93 - Annual Destruction of Records

 

ADOPTED  RESOLUTION NO. 2001-93, A RESOLUTION OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF RANCHO PALOS VERDES AUTHORIZING THE DESTRUCTION OF CERTAIN CITY RECORDS AS PROVIDED BY SECTION 34090 OF THE GOVERNMENT CODE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA, MAKING CERTAIN CHANGES TO EXISTING RETENTION SCHEDULES, AND AMENDING RESOLUTION NO. 2000-85.

 

Claim Against The City by John Shahin

 

Rejected the claim and direct the City Clerk to notify the claimant of Council’s action.

 

Claim Against The City by Steve Finazzo

 

Rejected the claim and direct the City Clerk to notify the claimant of Council’s action.

 

Resol. No. 2001-94 - Register of Demands

 

ADOPTED RESOLUTION NO. 2001-94, 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.

 

The motion to approve the Consent Calendar carried on the following roll call vote:

 

AYES:            Ferraro, Gardiner, McTaggart, Stern, and Mayor Lyon

NOES:           None

 

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REGULAR BUSINESS:

 

Address Curb Painting

 

Director Allison presented the staff report of November 20, 2001 and the recommendation to (1)  Authorize staff to include address curb painting in the Annual Residential Overlay and Slurry Seal Program.  (2)  Direct staff to deny future requests for an encroachment permit for address curb painting.

 

Mayor pro tem McTaggart asked if estimated cost per unit was standard.

 

Director Allison indicated that the total estimated cost of $7,500 broke down to $6.00 to $7.00 per unit, which was a standard charge.

 

Mayor pro tem McTaggart asked if that would vary by the number of curbs painted or was this a set amount specified in the contract.

 

Director Allison indicated that the curb painting would be made part of the slurry and overlay contract and that the City would be charged from $.00 to $6.00 per unit.

 

Councilwoman Ferraro asked if the slurry seal contractor would actually be painting the addresses on the curbs.

 

Director Allison said that the slurry seal contractor would most likely hire a subcontractor.  He added that the quality of the work performed by independent contractors in the past was not an issue but the intimidating collection procedure directly from the homeowner had been a problem and this payment would now be made by the City to the slurry seal contractor.

 

Councilman Stern felt that public education would be important so that residents would know that the City would be painting addresses on curbs every seven years.  He asked how the City intended to prevent independent contractors from offering this service directly to the homeowners and wondered if it was appropriate to adopt an ordinance.

 

Director Allison replied that an independent contractor would be required to obtain a permit from the City, and this permit would be denied.  He added that if the contractor did not have this permit, the Sheriff would be called on for enforcement.

 

City Manager Evans felt that an ordinance was not necessary because the Neighborhood Watch organization would alert the City if this became a problem and the Sheriff would enforce the contractor’s lack of a City permit.

 

Mayor pro tem McTaggart related an experience in which solicitors two years ago showed him a permit issued during the time Doug Hinchliffe was Mayor and this was a period many years back.  He was concerned that residents would not recognize an

invalid permit.

 

City Manager Evans indicated that information regarding businesses with City licenses was on the website or the information could be obtained by calling City Hall.

 

Mayor Lyon reminded residents they could pick up a No Solicitors sign at City Hall

also.

 

Councilwoman Ferraro moved, seconded by Councilman Stern, to (1)  Authorize staff to include address curb painting in the Annual Residential Overlay and Slurry Seal Program.  (2)  Direct staff to deny future requests for an encroachment permit for address curb painting.  Motion carried.

 

Comment Letter To The Regional Water Quality Control Board On The Draft Storm Water Permit

 

Director Allison presented the staff report of November 20, 2001 and the recommendation to authorize the Mayor to sign the proposed letter to the Regional Water Quality Control Board outlining the City’s concerns with the proposed storm water permit.

 

Mayor pro tem McTaggart asked if the volume of water cleansed was about 23,000 gallons.

 

Director Allison said that was the approximate volume.

 

Mayor pro tem McTaggart thought the directives were unreasonable.

 

Director Allison agreed that the requirements were too broad and that it was difficult to comment.  He said that he had met with the Water Board and after the permit was adopted, he would submit environmental information sensitive to the City.  He hoped that there would be improvement.

 

Councilwoman Ferraro echoed Mayor pro tem McTaggart’s comments about the directives.

 

Director Allison said that they seem to be a little better each time.

 

Mayor pro tem McTaggart said that development was not allowed in environmental hazard zoning and this was the best place.

 

Director Allison said that this was the area the City was suggesting.

 

Councilman Stern moved, seconded by Councilwoman Ferraro, to authorize the Mayor to sign the attached letter to the Regional Water Quality Control Board, outlining the City’s concerns with the proposed storm water permit.  Motion carried.

 

Resol. No. 2001-95 - GASB Statement No. 34 Implementation

 

Director McLean presented the staff report of November 20, 2001, including a recommendation to (1)  Adopt the depreciation reporting method for the entire infrastructure of the City.  (2)  Award a professional services contract to Harris & Associates for the valuation of infrastructure assets for implementation of GASB Statement No. 34, and authorize the Mayor and the City Clerk to execute a professional services agreement with Harris & Associates.  (3)  Adopt the proposed resolution amending Resolution No. 2001-43, the budget appropriation for Fiscal Year 2001-2002, for a budget adjustment to the City’s general fund.

 

Mayor Lyon remarked that approval of the recommendation would be very helpful for citywide maintenance, including the pavement management system.

 

Director McLean agreed and stated that the pavement management system had been updated by Harris & Associates in the past.  He added that several portions of the City’s infrastructure do have a records system.  Certain segments do not and the City does not have the staff to perform the inventory, therefore, hiring Harris & Associates is necessary.

 

Mayor pro tem McTaggart asked if the City’s inventory of furniture and equipment is maintained using a bar coding system.

 

Director McLean said that not as part of this infrastructure; that a complete physical inventory was performed about a year ago; and, that bar coding all City property is an upcoming project for the Accounting Manager.

 

Councilman Gardiner asked if there would be financial reports as in the private sector, such as balance sheets and profit & loss statements reflecting indirect and direct costs.

 

Director McLean replied that the financial statement presentation will be changed with implementation of GASB 34.

 

Councilman Gardiner asked if, like in the private sector, there would be financial ratios, comparisons with other cities.

 

Director McLean responded that some of the information was part of the CAFR in the Introduction section and more meaningful financial analyses will be included with the implementation of GASB34.

 

Mayor Lyon said that direction normally came from Sacramento and the cities

have not been able to take care of infrastructure. She felt this would bring to the forefront cities like RPV and might help with state funding.

 

Councilman Stern said that the recommendation was to approve expenditure of $40,000 and option three included a field inspection and was a little more expensive. He wondered why staff was not recommending a field inspection.

 

Director McLean replied that this was discussed with the auditors.  For an additional $10,000, the consultants will conduct surveys. He said that the infrastructure numbers would be based on estimates, because it was not possible to determine the actual cost of the infrastructure.  Staff does not think surveying added sufficient benefit.

 

Councilman Stern moved, seconded by Councilwoman Ferraro, to (1)  Adopt the depreciation reporting method for the entire infrastructure of the City.  (2)  Award a professional services contract to Harris & Associates for the valuation of infrastructure assets for implementation of GASB Statement No. 34, and authorize the Mayor and the City Clerk to execute a professional services agreement with Harris & Associates.  (3)  Adopt the proposed resolution amending Resolution No. 2001-43, the budget appropriation for Fiscal Year 2001-2002, for a budget adjustment to the City’s general fund.

 

The motion carried on the following roll call vote:

 

AYES:            Ferraro, Gardiner, McTaggart, Stern, and Mayor Lyon

NOES:           None

 

Ordinance No. 371 - Ordinance establishing regulations applicable to skateboards, roller skates, inline skates, and scooters upon public and private property

 

City Clerk Purcell presented the staff report of November 20, 2001 and the recommendation to introduce the proposed ordinance establishing regulations applicable to skateboards, roller skates, inline skates and scooters upon public and private property and amending the Rancho Palos Verdes municipal code. 

 

Ordinance No. 371 - Ordinance establishing regulations applicable to  skateboards, roller skates, inline skates, and scooters upon public and  private property

 

Darcy Judd, representing Peninsula Shopping Center and Westmont Plaza urged the Council to approve the ordinance because of complaints from customers and retailers about riders who zoom down sidewalks and through the parking lots.  She said that she agreed with these people that someone was going to be hurt, including possibly the skateboarders themselves. She explained that skateboards get away from the kids and one could take out a storefront and aside from safety, customers were being driven away She said that the Sheriff's Department would attest to the success at Peninsula Shopping Center.

 

Mayor Lyon suspected that a similar problem might exist at Miraleste Plaza

 

Deputy Randy Oviedo from the Sheriff's Department felt that Darcy Judd had explained the situation clearly and that an undercover operation confirmed that the problem existed at Miraleste Plaza and Carl's Jr. after school and on weekends and it was observed that kids in front of Stuft Pizza were coming out between cars, just missing vehicles.

 

Lois Larue, 3136 Barkentine Road, described raising her two sons and she felt that it was wrong to prevent children in the City from enjoying their skateboards and that it was wrong to allow the deputy sheriffs to wear guns at City Council meetings..

 

Councilman Gardiner said that he understood the safety concern but he felt the fines were too expensive and that kids had to play somewhere.  He wondered where they would be allowed to participate in these types of activities.

 

City Attorney Lynch clarified that this ordinance was not a ban on these types of activities but merely allowed a private shopping center to post a prohibition sign on their won property.  He emphasized that unless the City Council provided direction to staff, there would be no ban on any City land.

 

Councilman Gardiner reiterated that he felt the fines were too high.

 

Mayor Lyon felt that it would be worse to have one of the children hit by a car.

 

Mayor pro tem McTaggart described an incident he observed at the Arco gas station at Silver Spur and Hawthorne during which the proprietor called the Sheriff when kids were causing problems with these types of activities and he said that by the time the Sheriff's department arrived, the kids were gone.  He said that this scenario occurred constantly and he was concerned about safety and his personal liability.  Mayor pro tem McTaggart discussed skateboard parks being built in some cities and he wondered if this could be a possibility at upper Point Vicente Park, where the noise from the skateboards would not disturb residents.

 

Councilman Gardiner agreed that this would be a good place for kids to burn energy in an area which could be made safe for them.

 

Mayor pro tem McTaggart said that the City of Paramount had just recently completed a spectacular skateboard park which was designed by the kids.

 

Councilman Stern noted that City Attorney Lynch made an important point that businesses could choose to post the signs or not and he said that he felt it was appropriate to ban children playing in parking lots even though kids did need to be kids and have fun.  He emphasized that the Council could decide what would be banned in the parks.  He agreed that the fines seemed too high.

 

City Attorney Lynch said that the Council could establish lower fines

 

City Manager Evans thought that possibly the Sheriff's Department might comment on the possibility of giving a warning only for the first offense.

 

Mayor pro tem McTaggart suggested that the wording regarding the fine be changed to indicate that the fine could be to a certain amount.

 

Mayor Lyon asked about the fine in Rolling Hills Estates.

 

Randy Oviedo believed it was less than $100 for the first offense

 

Councilman Stern asked how the Sheriff’s Department dealt with the kids when they approached them.

 

Randy Oviedo said that the habitual ones have been warned many times and he felt it was not appropriate to take any action for a first-time offender.  However, he was in favor of this ordinance to provide a tool to alleviate this problem in shopping area parking lots in the City.  He agreed that many times the children were gone by the time the Sheriff’s Department arrived.

 

Councilman Gardiner commented that a warning to a 12-year old probably meant nothing and that the parent would have to be notified.

 

Mayor pro tem McTaggart noted that Rolling Hills Estates does not give warnings, only tickets.

 

Randy Oviedo said that after a few citations are written, word gets out among the kids.

 

Councilman Stern spoke in support of the ordinance since it gave property owners the option to post the sign or not and he also agreed that the Sheriff’s Department could give a warning for a first offence.

 

Councilman Gardiner stated that the signs would not be heeded by the children and that there had to be a way to get the message to the parents.

 

Mayor Lyon suggested publicity through the City’s website, newsletter, and the reader board.

 

Councilman Gardiner suggested that information be sent home from the schools.

 

Mayor pro tem McTaggart felt that a sign would be adequate notice and pointed out that some of the children live in San Pedro and are residents of the City of Los Angeles.

 

Mayor Lyon noted that the reader board is available to residents of San Pedro

 

The motion carried on the following roll call vote:

 

AYES:            Ferraro, Gardiner, McTaggart, Stern, and Mayor Lyon

NOES:           None

 

PUBLIC COMMENTS:

 

Steve Finazzo, 2175 Rockinghorse Road, spoke about his claim against the City and said that he had  wanted to speak to his item on the Consent Calendar but he had arrived at 7:05 P.M. and the Consent Calendar had already been approved and his claim denied.  He distributed to the Council a handout which described and illustrated his challenge to restore the view from his living room.  He explained that some trees had been crowned or never cut and that there was one branch in particular which was impacting his view.  He stated that within three months after trimming, the growth returns.  He said this has been going on for since 1997.

 

Mayor Lyon asked City Attorney Lynch if the Council has to re-open the item to discuss it.

 

City Attorney Lynch said that this was not necessary if the Council was only going to discuss the item.

 

Councilman Stern asked Mr. Finazzo if he had made a financial claim against the City.

 

Mr. Finazzo replied that staff had not been able to take care of his problem so he filed the claim against the City.

 

Councilman Stern asked why the City would owe him money.

 

Mr. Finazzo said because the job was not accomplished appropriately and the trees were not trimmed to 25 feet all around as they should have been.

 

Councilman Stern asked staff if the foliage owner did not comply with the trimming requirement.

 

City Attorney Lynch said that it was a complicated issue.  She said that the View Restoration Commission had determined which trees were to be trimmed and that there was one limb which was not addressed and Mr. Finazzo felt that this branch impaired  his view.  She said that the City had offered to cut back the branch at the City’s expense and that the Joint Powers Insurance Authority had offered to pay Mr. Finazzo $400.  She indicated that the most relevant component of Mr. Finazzo’s case is the regrowth after the foliage is trimmed.  She said that the resolution drafted indicated that annual tree trimming would be discussed each December.  She closed by stating that Mr. Finazzo was not amenable to the JPIA’s settlement, JPIA rejected his claim against the City and this is why the item was on the agenda.

 

Mr. Finazzo, using photographs he presented to the Council, explained that the trees were trimmed two weeks ago and a huge branch was cut back, which showed more sky, but not his city lights view.

 

Councilman Stern told Mr. Finazzo that to correct a view issue, he would have to work with the City staff and the View Restoration Commission, and that the City Council had denied his claim because he was not entitled to money from the City.

 

Mr. Finazzo said that his case was before the View Restoration Commission three months ago and the Commission told him that they did not have the authority to re-open the case and that he would have to request that the City Council re-open his case.

 

Mayor Lyon asked if the case would be opened in December.

 

Director Rojas said that this was when the annual trimming would be addressed.

 

City Attorney Lynch asked Mr. Finazzo about re-growth.

 

Mr. Finazzo replied that two months after trimming, the foliage grows back.

 

Councilman Gardiner asked if the correct branches were trimmed, or were some missed.

 

City Attorney Lynch said that the View Restoration Commission’s decision focused on different parts of three trees and Mr. Finazzo feels that the trimming is not adequate but that he did not appeal to the City Council or to a court.

 

Councilman Gardiner clarified that the item on the Council agenda was to make a decision regarding money to be awarded to Mr. Finazzo not to discuss his view issue.

 

City Attorney Lynch confirmed that money was the issue on the agenda and that Mr. Finazzo based this claim for funds based on regrowth of foliage.

 

Councilman Gardiner said that a bad decision could be appealed but that issuing funds to Mr. Finazzo was not justified.

 

Councilman Stern agreed that this was not the proper remedy.

 

Councilman Gardiner asked if Mr. Finazzo appealed the original decision.

 

City Attorney Lynch said no and explained that he could file a new View Restoration application.

 

Mayor Lyon suggested that the Council could waive the fee for a new application.

 

City Attorney Lynch said that she had seen the photographs but she understood that the View Restoration Commission had ruled that the foliage not included in the trimming did not cause significant view impairment because the branches were in edge of view frame.  The Commission focused on the view from Mr. Finazzo’s primary viewing area.  If Mr. Finazzo was unhappy with that ruling, his remedy was to file an appeal.

 

Mayor Lyon told Mr. Finazzo that the annual tree trimming would be reviewed in December and said she hoped he received the action he desired.

 

Mr. Finazzo asked why the trees could not be trimmed 16 to 25 feet all around and why the tree were not being cut on the south side of the property.

 

Mayor Lyon advised Mr. Finazzo that the Council could not address the issues of his case.

 

Mr. Finazzo felt that the action being taken was different from that described when direction was given.

 

Councilman Gardiner said that if proper action was not being taken according to the direction given when his case was heard before the View Restoration Commission, staff would need to verify this.

 

Councilman Gardiner said that it appeared Mr. Finazzo needed to visit the Planning Department, who worked with the View Restoration Commission.

 

Mayor Lyon suggested that Mr. Finazzo meet with Director Rojas after the meeting.

 

CLOSED SESSION REPORT:

 

City Attorney Lynch reported that no action was taken on the first item regarding purchase of open space but that a report was received from the City Negotiator.

 

Regarding the first item of potential litigation, she stated that the City Council directed her office to make a counter offer to Chandler Landfill.

 

Regarding the second item of potential litigation, she reported that the City Council authorized payment to Ledsam Contracting.

 

ORAL CITY COUNCIL REPORTS:

 

Councilwoman Ferraro reported from attending the Palos Verdes Transit meeting the following:  ridership is up, most of the passengers are students, and some routes are being restructured.  From attending the West Bain Water District meeting, she reported the following:  because of the instituting of a two-tier structure for distribution and cost of water, there is encouragement to buy water on a long term basis, hoping that adequate rain will make a price increase unnecessary.  Councilwoman Ferraro reported that she, like Councilman Stern, had coffee with Tom Harnsberger and discussed the Long Point project and the Filiorum property.  She encouraged him to work with the negotiator.

 

Mayor Pro Tem McTaggart said that he met with the same gentleman for a dutch-treat lunch.  He reported that Tom Harnsberger purports to be interested in finding a solution to the development or sale of the Filiorum property.

 

Councilmember Gardiner referenced a dutch-treat lunch with the same gentleman and he reported that his comments were similar to the ones in Councilman Stern’s memo.

 

Councilman Stern read the memo he submitted regarding Filiorum acquisition, a copy of which is on file with the City Clerk’s office.  He also reported on a Regional Law Enforcement meeting that he and Mayor pro tem McTaggart attended at which representatives from the Sheriff’s Department and Fire Department and the District G Emergency Coordinator focused on disaster preparedness with an update in light of recent threats.

 

Mayor Pro Tem McTaggart reported from attending the South Bay Cities Council of Governments meeting the following:  The same Emergency Preparedness presentation was given at the Regional Law Enforcement meeting, the emergency coordinator operates with a staff of one, there will be a planning exercise to encourage the agencies to work together, the Sheriff’s and Fire Departments are working closer together as a result of recent events.

 

Mayor Lyon reported on her meeting with the newly formed Coastal Coalition, made up of coastline cities and groups to groups interesting in protecting wetlands and increasing safety at beaches.  She said that she found the group to be cohesive and worthwhile and said that it will be focusing on legislation and funding.  She noted that Mayor pro tem McTaggart is the City’s other delegate.

 

Mayor pro tem McTaggart reported that he had received a lot of information from the Coastal Coalition.

 

ADJOURNMENT: Adjourned at 8:22 P.M. on motion of Mayor Lyon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

____________________

                MAYOR

ATTEST:

 

 

_________________­­_____

     CITY CLERK