City Manager's Blog

The City Manager's Blog is an online educational tool to provide general information to the community in open communication style. Periodically, the City Manager will post articles of general interest covering topics such as the Town's budget, budget process, capital projects, upcoming meetings, community issues, public safety, and general Town operations.

Articles in the blog are not designed as press releases or Town publications, rather, they are written in more of a conversational style. The Blog does not have a comments feature but readers are free to respond to the Blog and its entries view email directly to the City Manager.

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Feb 08

Coming to a City Council Near You

Posted on February 8, 2017 at 3:06 PM by grodericks grodericks

On Wednesday, February 15, the Council will meet for their
regularly scheduled meeting. The meeting begins at 7 pm
at the Atherton Council Chambers.
The Agenda includes a number of important items for Council consideration. Up first will be the regular Consent Agenda. These are routine items considered in one motion for approval. This will typically include minutes of prior meetings, the warrant register (bills), and other routine items. Specific approvals this month include: - Approval of an amendment to the Master Fee Schedule to Address Repossession of Vehicles - Authorization for the City Manager to use funds within the Refuse Rate Stabilization Fund to engage a consultant to assist with possible franchise negotiations/renewal process - Award of Contract for the 2017 Street Patching Project - Award of Contract for the 2017 Street Cape Seal Project After the Consent Agenda, the Council will move on to the Regular Agenda. This is where you’ll staff reports prior to each item to introduce it. Items on this month’s agenda include: - Amendment to the Town’s Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan for Class I/II Bike Lanes along Oak Grove and authorization for design work - Introduction of the Proposed Drone Ordinance Regulating Drone Use in Atherton - Consideration of Activities Related to the 2017 Earth Day Event Planned for April - Mid-Year Budget Report and Amendments - Selection of new LED Street Light Design for the Series Street Light Replacement Project
street_light_options.jpg There are two high-profile items on the Agenda this month. The first is approval of the Civic Center Project’s 100% Design Development Plans and Cost Estimate. This is a fairly significant milestone for this project. Moving forward from here is development of actual construction drawings in anticipation of bidding the project in the latter part of 2017. There are a few change orders that need to be approved as well to address professional services provided along the way - some architectural design changes as well as project management and engineering. The Civic Center Project is the most significant project in the Town’s history. There has been a tremendous amount of effort that has gone into the design of the project thus far. The effort is not only from professional staff and contractors, but also the tireless volunteers that served on the various committees, the public that engaged with comments and suggestions along the way, and those in the community that hosted community forums and outreach to help get the word out and get the input in to affect design. Not to be forgotten is the outstanding efforts of Atherton Now, the fundraising arm for the project. The project would not be where it is at today without the fundraising efforts and contributions from Atherton Now. Once built, this project will represent the largest public/private partnership undertaken by the Town.
You can follow the project’s progress and review the 100% Design Development Plans via the Town’s website.
But there is one hurdle left. Also to be considered by the Council at the February 15 meeting will be whether to Call a Special Election for June 2017 with an Advisory Ballot Measure Regarding Funding for the Civic Center Project. As successful as Atherton Now has been, the funds raised are not enough to fully fund the construction of the Town Center portion of the Civic Center. The Library, Restoration/Renovation of Historic Town Hall (into to a multi- purpose space for the Library), and the associated site work is fully funded by dedicated Library Funds. However, the funding source for the Town Center portion of the site - City Hall, Police Department, Building Department, Public Works, Planning, and its associated site work is restricted to donations and funds allocated within the building facilities fund.
After funding the majority of design costs for the project, Atherton Now has a committed and funded additional amount of approximately $4 million that can be allocated toward construction costs. There is an additional $2.9 million in building facilities funds. The total estimated construction cost is approximately $21.8 million. The remaining construction funds needed is $14.5 million (at 50% Design). To address this shortfall, the City Council has identified a Funding Plan, but that Funding Plan hinges on the ability to use available, non-dedicated General Funds - something not considered when the Town approved Measure L in 2012. So, the Council is considering putting another advisory vote to the electorate in June 2017 to affirm the possible use of available, non-dedicated General Funds. Inclusive of Educational Revenue Augmentation Funds (ERAF) during the life of the construction project (expected 27-months), the Town has approximately $12.2 million in available funds (not using any Special Parcel Tax funds or mandatory reserves). The remaining gap of roughly $2-3 million could be funded by year-over-year revenues over expenditures or the use of short-term borrowing against anticipated revenues. On February 1, the Council committed that no new project-specific taxes would be created to fund the project.

The full agenda packet for the February 15, 2017 meeting will be available online on Friday, February 10. Check it out...we’d like your feedback! George Rodericks City Manager Town of Atherton #AthertonTalks