Chair Swanson called the meeting to order at 6:32 p.m.
Commissioner Keller led the flag salute.
Kathleen Baier-Dalton, Virginia Han, Pamela Keller, George Miller, Craig Russell, Nancy Spencer, Neil Swanson
Community Services Director Ron Molendyk, Community Services Managers Joe Felz, Randy McDaniel, and Pat Trotter, Dan Sereno, Landscape Superintendent; Housing Programs Supervisor Linda Morad, Water System Manager Dave Schickling.
Chair Swanson presented past Chair Miller with a plaque and thanked him for doing a great job last year.
Chair Swanson congratulated reappointed commissioners, Craig Russell and Nancy Spencer, and welcomed new Commissioner, Pam Keller.
Commissioner Dalton MADE A MOTION to approve the Minutes of the March 14, 2005 regular meeting as written. Commissioner Miller SECONDED THE MOTION.
Per Chair Swanson, the minutes stand APPROVED AS WRITTEN.
Chair Swanson noted that the Community Services Commission had previously reviewed a proposed policy for donating memorial benches and trees in City parks. Director Molendyk agreed and said that when staff reviewed the minutes of that Commission meeting, and shared the outcome of the meeting with the City Manager, staff was asked to tighten up the policy, and to have the Commission review the actual costs. He said Community Services staff was also asked if the fees were too high to expect the community to participate. Director Molendyk then introduced Randy McDaniel, Park Projects Manager, for the presentation.
Manager McDaniel said the purpose of the agenda item was to get a recommendation from the Commission to City Council to adopt a formal policy allowing memorial trees and benches in City parks. He outlined the proposed resolution which would allow memorial trees and benches in City parks, and was in response to a few requests yearly for memorial trees and benches. Currently, he said, the City only has an informal policy; the resolution would create a formal policy for donating memorial tress and benches.
Manager McDaniel noted the Commissions recommendations from its December 13, 2004 meeting including a proposal of increasing the cost by 25% and making donations a special privilege and adding an annual inflator, and coming back to review the issue on an annual basis. He noted that, as Director Molendyk had mentioned, this was an opportunity for the Commission to discuss the revised resolution and to discuss additional options prior to bringing it to Council.
Manager McDaniel outlined the revised resolutions rules and regulations including three options related to the types of donations allowed: 1.) D1. Donating a tree or bench, or adopting an existing tree or bench; 2.) D2. Donating a new tree or adopting an existing tree or bench; 3.) D3. Donating a new tree or existing tree; memorial benches would not be allowed.
The fees proposed in the revised resolution were then outlined including the options for memorial bench fees: 1.) A1. $6,300 for a bench including one replacement in a 20-year life span; or 2.) A2. $3,200 for a bench without a replacement in a 20-year life span; or 3.) A3. Memorial benches not allowed in parks; and 4.) $3,200 for adopting existing benches including one replacement within a 20-year life span, an option that could be additional to Options A1 or A2. New and adopted trees (24 box) would be $1,000 within a 20-year life span. Replacement due to vandalism or theft were also outlined: Bench - $2,000; tree - $220; bench plaque - $126.
Manager McDaniel showed pictures of benches at various parks, noting that there are sometimes two or three different benches in one park; thus, one standard memorial bench would probably have to be adopted for each park. He then opened the meeting up for questions.
Commissioner Spencer asked for clarification regarding the adoption policy, asking if an existing bench would have a plaque attached to it. Manager McDaniel agreed with her, saying that one would take an existing bench in good condition, and put a plaque on it. Within 20 years, if the bench needed to be replaced, the $3,200 paid into a bench replacement account would ensure that the bench would be replaced.
Commissioner Miller expressed concern that the tree and bench policy was complicated. Manager McDaniel said he tried to make the policy as simple as possible but also responsive to any potential Commissioner questions. Director Molendyk said staff was trying to encourage residents to adopt and possibly clean up or replace existing benches because a new one in a park might not be possible. In addition, he said the real reason they came back with the item was that from the feedback received, they needed to ensure that the Commissions recommendations are seen favorably by Council and adopted. He said staff also wants to confirm whether the commissioners want the benches to be a privilege or, by lowering costs, to allow more people to adopt benches.
Manager McDaniel also noted that when one actually chooses an option, the resolution is not confusing and that when he had reviewed the previous resolution, there were still some unanswered questions. He said that the reasons and willingness to pay for a memorial in a park varied with each citizen, and that, hopefully, a policy would help to simplify the process, adding that the simplest policy would be either only allowing trees or not allowing any memorials in parks which was the commissioners choice.
Commissioner Spencer asked if benches are needed in the parks, and, if so, which parks. She said she had spoken to Landscape Superintendent Dan Sereno, and that perhaps benches were needed at Laguna Lake since it was being renovated. Manager McDaniel said the City had just received a $500,000 grant to make improvements including benches, thus, the memorial benches might help a little, however, the grant would help out a whole lot.
Commissioner Miller said he had asked the question and didnt get an answer at the previous meeting: How many exact requests do we get and do we really need this at all? Manager McDaniel answered that the City gets about three bench requests per year and Manager Sereno said they get about four tree requests. Commissioner Miller noted that they are spending a lot of time for seven requests per year and asked again if they really needed this at all.
Chair Swanson responded that they are trying to determine the answer to the question tonight. He then asked about the price of the benches at the various parks, and said that regardless of the actual cost, there would only be one fee for donating a bench. Manager McDaniel agreed, but noted that the price could be $6,300 or $3,200.
Commissioner Russell said that at the previous meeting, they had agreed to bump up the cost by 25% to ensure the sufficiency of the donations. He asked if the prices in A1 or A2 included the 25% bump up, and Manager McDaniel said yes, saying he bumped up the highest costs proposed at the previous meeting. Commissioner Russell then asked who initiated the item being brought back to Commission, and asked why it wasnt good enough. Manager McDaniel said it was a complicated policy and that after the Commissions recommendation, staff realized there still needed to be some additional clarification, e.g. the size and wording of the plaque is clarified in the new resolution. Moreover, staff didnt feel it would be fair to Commission to go to Council without a further clarified resolution as Council would probably make a lot of changes. Commissioner Russell said he was leaning towards Commissioner Millers feeling of forgetting about the project completely, adding that he was more confused than before. Commissioner Han said she felt the same way.
Director Molendyk responded to Commissioner Millers question saying that the reason the item was agendized originally was because Council had received several requests and was asked through the City Managers office to agendize the item and develop a policy. He said that if the Commission, looking at it twice, still doesnt want a policy and thinks its too complicated, the Department can bring their recommendation to Council that the informal policy continue. However, that policy is difficult for staff because there arent set fees. He said that Manager McDaniel was trying to get the Commissions recommendation on either a $6,300 or $3,200 bench, regardless of the type of bench or park, reducing the staffs time needed to take people to various parks and provide different prices.
Commissioner Russell hoped the issue was that simple, but said since there seemed to be concern regarding the pricing, and asked if someone didnt like the Commissions recommendation. Director Molendyk said that the informal feedback they received after the Commissions initial recommendation was that the policy was cost prohibitive; however, that might be the Commissions intent, i.e., a memorial would be an extreme privilege and the Commission doesnt really want the City getting into the memorial business.
Manager McDaniel said staff has to anticipate the types of questions Council might ask and provide alternatives. He suggested that it might be easier if Commission decided first on options D1, D2, or D3, or whether they want to allow memorial benches in parks, noting the informal policy is not allowing benches, but allowing trees with no plaques. He suggested that they have a discussion on whether they should change the informal policy to a formal policy and allow memorial benches. If the Commission could have a discussion and make a motion on that, it could then move forward and discuss cost.
Commissioner Spencer asked what the actual experience of other cities was, saying that they might find out it was a mess or that it was working out. Manager McDaniel said the policy varied with each city but he didnt know the actual experience of each city or how it has actually worked out. Commissioner Miller asked if the people requesting a formal policy realized there were only seven requests in a year, that this wasnt a clamoring of the community. Director Molendyk noted that, regardless of the number of people, they were asked to bring the item to Commission, but that the Commission might decide that it wasnt relevant if only seven or eight people made memorial requests.
Commissioner Spencer suggested limiting the policy to trees, saying they were rather easy to deal with. Commissioner Han said it felt as though they were back to ground zero even though Commission had recommended a policy previously. Manager McDaniel responded that there had not been a recommendation regarding pricing in the previous resolution, also noting that the Commission had not really been given the option not to have a memorial bench policy, just options on costs. Commissioner Russell said he didnt remember any previous discussion about adoption, and asked why there wasnt an option for only donating a tree or bench rather than adopting also. Manager McDaniel agreed that that could be an option.
Commissioner Miller MADE A MOTION that the entire policy for donating memorial trees or benches be abandoned. There was NO SECOND. The MOTION FAILED.
Commissioner Spencer MADE A MOTION to accept Option D3 of Resolution 9701 allowing the donation of memorial trees and benches, with the amendment that only trees could be donated or adopted, and that there would be no memorial benches allowed. Commissioner Miller SECONDED THE MOTION.
Chair Swanson called for the vote.
Commissioner Keller called for discussion, and asked if, for example, an adopted tree caught on fire soon after the purchase, the donor would have to replace the tree even though the City would have replaced the tree if it hadnt been adopted. Manager McDaniel said that per the policy, the donor would have to pay for replacement, but whether it was fair or not, was another question. Commissioner Han said that didnt seem fair, and noted that adoption always complicated things. Commissioner Keller said she just didnt like the whole vandalism/theft policy. Commissioner Spencer then AMENDED her motion to only allow for new trees.
Commissioner Dalton said she had a feeling that staff did not bring the issue up themselves, and that the bench issue also came from outside, so that if Commission just rejects the bench issue, Council will probably do something with it anyway. Thus, she said, Commission can allow Council to do this, or Commission can develop an option for benches. Director Molendyk agreed with Commissioner Daltons assessment, saying that the memorial trees were added after the bench request came from Council. However, Director Molendyk said that Commission, after studying the issue, might still feel trees are a more appropriate memorial than benches. Manager McDaniel added that a policy was also important because currently, trees are donated but costs are not being recovered.
When Commissioner Miller asked, from the Citys standpoint, what was needed more - benches or trees, he was told trees. However, Commissioner Russell suggested that five benches would have much more impact on the City than five trees, saying the issue wasnt whether the City needed more trees since they could plant more trees. Chair Swanson asked Superintendent Sereno if the City takes out a tree from the demand inventory if a tree were donated, and Superintendent Sereno said no, and also said that he does not currently allow for adopted trees, and that the only cost recovery is the actual cost of purchasing the tree. He said the process is very informal, and he allows the donor to choose a park, then meets the donor there, gives him/her options on species based on the existing trees, and doesnt allow plaques. He said sometimes donors put up makeshift plaques which he doesnt touch. He said that the trees dont need additional water as they are planted where irrigation already occurs.
Commissioner Dalton suggested that the Commission include benches in the policy for people who really want a bench, as Commissioner Russell had previously suggested, and that more free seating at a park wasnt a bad thing, if they could make it a special privilege. She also asked Manager McDaniel if the City cares if a memorial bench has a 20 year life span and isnt replaced after its destroyed, or if it should have a 40 year life span. He answered that if the City felt the bench was important due to its location, it would replace it; otherwise, if its only just memorial and not well-utilized, it would be up to the donor to replace it or allow it to remain in a deteriorated condition.
When asked if Commissioner Spencer would like a vote on her amended motion, she agreed. Chair Swanson called for the vote on the AMENDED MOTION, which was to adopt Option D3 amended to allow for new trees only without memorial benches.
AYES: Spencer, Miller
NOES: Dalton, Han, Keller, Russell, Swanson
The MOTION FAILED.
Commissioner Dalton MADE A MOTION to accept Option D1 of Resolution 9701 allowing both donation of new trees and new benches, but AMENDED THE MOTION to Option D1 to exclude the adoption of trees or benches.
Commissioner Russell expressed concern that the policy allowing memorial trees at a relatively inexpensive cost would make the demand for them expand to 50 or 100 requests, and was leaning towards taking out the trees as it might become burdensome to Superintendent Sereno. Superintendent Sereno said that while there might be some increase in requests, he didnt believe it would be significant. He also asked Commission Dalton, since they had included a caveat of review of the resolution in one year, if her motion could be amended to include the review.
Commissioner Dalton agreed wholeheartedly and FURTHER AMENDED THE MOTION to include a provision in the resolution to review the resolution after one year. Chair Swanson summarized the amended motion: to allow the donation of both new trees and benches. Commissioner Keller SECONDED THE MOTION.
Chair Swanson called for the vote.
AYES: Dalton, Han, Keller, Miller, Russell, Spencer, Swanson
The MOTION PASSED unanimously.
Commissioner Dalton then MADE A MOTION to adopt Option A2 of the resolution which would allow for the purchase of benches at $3,200 including purchase, installation, and annual maintenance. If the bench needed to be replaced within the 20-year life expectancy, the donor would have the option of making an additional donation to continue the memorial. A clarification was also added that the cost at the time of any replacement would include the annual inflator. Commissioner Russell SECONDED THE MOTION.
Chair Swanson called for the vote.
AYES: Dalton, Han, Keller, Miller, Russell, Spencer, Swanson
The MOTION PASSED unanimously.
Director Molendyk asked Manager McDaniel to introduce the proposed Centennial Monument project. Manager McDaniel provided an aerial view of the museum and plaza and a site map of Plaza Park, noting that staff met with the representative from the Centennial Committee, Chair Tom Dalton. He also showed a perspective view of the monument, as well as an elevation and site map, noting that the Centennial Committee had recommended Option 3.
Manager McDaniel said that after fundraising $12,000 for the Citys Centennial celebration, the Centennial Committee thought a memorial commemorating the Citys 100 year anniversary would be a nice way to utilize the left-over funds. After a review of parks, Committee members felt Plaza Park would be best because it was centrally located. He noted the arc benches were low-cost, and stones could be used from a leftover Hillcrest Park project.
Commissioner Swanson asked what the longevity of the bench would be and Manager McDaniel said it should be very long-term due to it being made of concrete although the lighting could be a problem. Commissioner Spencer asked if trees would have to be removed, and was told they shouldnt have to although a real study hadnt been done. Commissioner Han asked if any special paving would be used, and Manager McDaniel said there might be some opportunity although the budget was small.
Commissioner Swanson asked if other locations were considered for the monument, and Centennial Committee Chair, Tom Dalton, replied that they had looked at other areas, but this was the least intrusive and no trees needed to be removed.
Chair Miller asked if the plaque detail color would hold up, and Chair Dalton said the plaque would have baked enamel and should last 25 years. In addition they thought the color and a steep angle might make the sign more readable than a bronze plaque they installed at Chapman Park that had become difficult to read because the low angle of the sign had allowed water to collect.
Commissioner Russell said he didnt want to micro-manage the project, but asked what kind of recommendation the Committee wanted. He said he was also wondering if the plaque colors, blue and orange, would reflect too much on Cal State Fullerton rather than on the City, and whether the Commission could make a recommendation on the color or what the plaque looks like. Manager McDaniel said the Department is asking that the Commission direct staff to proceed with the Centennial Monument as presented or make a revised recommendation.
Director Molendyk said they could discuss the plaque and colors with Centennial Committee Chair Dalton, who said the Committee wasnt tied to the color or design, and that it would be fine to make the plaque in solid bronze. He said the City doesnt seem to have any strong colors, so they chose orange to represent Orange County, and that the blue might have occurred because the Centennial logo was designed by a Cal State Fullerton alum.
Commissioner Swanson agreed that the colors used seem to refer to CSUF, but asked what other color should be used instead of the blue. Manager McDaniel said he couldnt speak to the color, but wanted to do a little more research on the color on aluminum, noting that there are many bronze plaques in the city that are either vertical or slanted that were quite readable.
Commissioner Han asked if there were a City color or flower and was told no. Director Molendyk reminded the commissioners that the Centennial Committee made banners for the fundraiser that were also in orange and blue, displayed through the City, and then returned to the donors. Commissioner Han thought orange and blue was a little out-dated and that other colors might better represent the new millennium.
Manager McDaniel suggested that the Commission recommend to Council that staff proceed with the project, and that the Department return to the Commission with the design details such as monument materials and colors. Commissioner Russell agreed that he didnt want to micromanage the project, but that the issue of color had jumped out at him as more connected to Cal State Fullerton rather than the City. Director Molendyk asked if the Commission would like to approve it in concept and that they could bring it back when the design is refined.
Commissioner Dalton asked if the Commission could approve the basic design of the plaque because the logo has been everywhere for a year, so she would be completely opposed to changing the design although the colors could be taken back to the Centennial Committee. Commissioner Russell agreed with Commissioner Daltons assessment. He said he didnt really care what color the plaque was, but that he didnt want others to have the same reaction when they walked by the plaque and think of it as a nice Cal State Fullerton plaque. There was further discussion and Committee Chair Dalton said they werent tied to the colors but more concerned about the wording of the plaque and the placement of the benches, and actually having the memorial. Commissioner Spencer said she liked the color on the plaque. Commissioner Miller asked if the Commission could approve the project and allow the Centennial Committee to decide on the color of the plaque, but Commissioner Russell disagreed, saying the Commission has to make the final decision on the plaque. Commissioner Dalton suggested that the colors be discussed and that it be cast in bronze because it is more historical and classic, noting that most of the historical and commemorative plaques are bronze because they are a traditional material and hold up well.
Commissioner Dalton then MADE A MOTION to direct staff to proceed with the project as presented with the AMENDMENT that the plaque be in bronze instead of color. Commissioner Russell SECONDED THE MOTION.
Chair Swanson called for the vote.
AYES: Dalton, Han, Keller, Miller, Russell, Spencer, Swanson
The MOTION PASSED unanimously.
Commissioner Dalton added that she would like to ask that the City maintain the monument in the future since the Centennial Committee had worked tirelessly for 18 months to provide a wonderful celebration for the City without any real City funding for the Centennial project. The commissioners and Director Molendyk also thanked Chair Dalton for his efforts.
INFORMATION ITEMS (Items 4 - 9)
Director Molendyk introduced the Richman Park Project Area improvements, noting the major renovations planned. He introduced Linda Morad, Housing Programs Supervisor, from the Development Services Department who provided a power point presentation with background on the project. She said it began with an Operation Cleanup Task Force headed by the Police Department, Code Enforcement and the Community Services Department, in the Valencia-Highland area in 1989. CDBG funds were used for code enforcement, housing rehabilitation and to develop the Valencia Community Center which contained a police substation.
In 1999, the name of the Task Force name was changed to the NET (Neighborhood Enhancement Team) with twelve clean-up areas identified including the Richman Park area. The area name was changed from the Valencia Highland area to the Richman Park area due to negative connotations with the former name. A study and an action plan was made, the latter which City Council approved in 2000, making the area a high priority. A design firm was hired to provide architectural and infrastructure design, Redevelopment Agency provided an incentive program for rehabilitation of existing units, and Development Services provided Community Services with $130,000 in funding for the Community Center at Richman Park. Ms. Morad showed the improvements made, listing the units funded by Home and Redevelopment Agency funds, saying that new construction was needed due to serious deterioration.
Ms. Morad said that $200,000 of CDBG funds are being used to install a signal at Valencia and Highland, and a lighted crosswalk at Elm and Highland. She noted Valencia Task Forces strong involvement in bringing the project back for consideration and approval by the City. She also noted Section 108 CDBG project loans for a three-year project totaling $7.5 million for alley reconstruction, a new mid-block street, park improvements, street reconstruction, street lights, and storm drain improvements.
Richman Park improvements were described which included a new restroom, play structures, shade picnic area, new lighting, handicap accessible walkways, landscaping, replacement of irrigation, a new park sign and lighting. Ms. Morad noted that there would be no change to the existing community center.
Director Molendyk asked Ms. Morad to go over the timeline which she did, noting that it was a three-year project, and that the City has received funding last June and is almost one year into the project. She further noted that they are obtaining conceptual designs for the alleys, sidewalks and streets with construction on the alleys slated to begin in October with conceptual design expected soon on Richman Park. She said construction should begin by next year, and the project completed in the third year.
Commissioner Spencer asked if the project would be affected if something would happen to CDBG funding or if funding is guaranteed. Ms. Morad responded that the City has already received the $7.5 million so future CDBG funding levels wont affect the project.
Commissioner Han said she understood why street and public safety improvements were made with Agency funds, but she asked why homeowners arent responsible for home repairs, how home owners got the funding for the repairs, and how they knew some of the homes were so bad inside. Ms. Morad said the homes were acquired and refurbished using federal Home funding (which can only be used for housing) because code enforcement wasnt working.
Commissioner Dalton asked about the need for a new cut-through street. Ms. Morad said the street was about twice the length of regular streets with difficult access for fire trucks and a safety issue due to poor alley visibility.
Commissioner Swanson asked about the name change to improve the areas image, and Ms. Morad said that Valencia Highland had started taking on a negative connotation from all the problems in that area, so staff decided to change the name to the Richman Park area. Director Molendyk thanked Ms. Morad for her presentation.
Director Molendyk introduced Dave Shickling, the Engineering Departments Water System Manager, saying that he would make an informational presentation on the Hillcrest Park Reservoir Replacement Project, and noting that the construction would also affect the roads and use in Hillcrest Park. Manager Shickling began with a history of the reservoir, saying the land was acquired in 1913, and the reservoir built in the 1920s, with a five million gallon reservoir rebuilt in 1928.
Manager Shickling noted that the reservoir has root intrusion, the inlet-outlet piping was deteriorated, and that a study recommended the reservoir be replaced. The existing reservoir is above ground whereas the proposed reservoir would be buried with a usable park area and about three feet of soil above it. No trees would be planted above the reservoir to avoid root intrusion. The City will be removing about 20 large trees and planting about 65 trees. Mr. Shickling said that a two-way road in the place of the current one-way road will also be built to improve park circulation, and he showed an artists conception of the reservoir project.
Manager Shickling described the phasing of the project, saying that Phase 1 of the contract is out to bid and that the contract award will go to Council for approval at the end of June. He said the City expects construction to begin June 2005, last about three and a half months, and include construction of pipelines on Valley View Drive and through a park access road. He also said there would be no daytime access to the parking lot at Valley View and Lemon for the first month, and that the Isaac Walton Cabin would be inaccessible to vehicles for three and a half months.
Manager Shickling then described Phase 2, saying that it would begin Oct. 2005, be 16.5 months in duration, and would include the demolition of the existing reservoir and construction of the new reservoir. He said the reservoir and reservoir access road would be closed to the public, and the upper parking lot vehicles will be kept out of the reservoir area. He then provided an overhead map of the phasing showing the access roads and circulation. He noted that the construction area would be fenced for safety.
Manager Shickling noted the community improvement area of the reservoir will be accessible to the public for the first time with stunning viewpoints. He said the reservoir construction will allow for the roof to support future improvements such as hardscape, playground equipment, and picnic areas.
Commissioner Spencer asked what kind of substance would support three feet of soil, and Mr. Shickling responded that the reservoir roof would have 16 inches of reinforced concrete with rebar, would be a five million gallon reservoir and 230 feet in diameter.
Commissioner Keller wanted to confirm that the parking lot at Valley View and Lemon would be inaccessible starting June, and Manager Shickling concurred, saying that a water line would have to be connected and a pipeline laid, so traffic would have to be cleared to allow easier access for the construction crew. Commissioner Keller asked about the summer program for children at Hillcrest, and Director Molendyk said Community Services Manager Judy Peterson will be coordinating that. He also complimented the engineering staff because its harder to engineer underground, but that the project would provide more space for the public.
Commissioner Spencer asked if the reservoir would supply drinking water and Manager Shickling answered yes. He said currently water is pumped from an Anaheim source to the reservoir, then distributed to other parts of the City, and boosted up to higher levels of the City.
Commissioner Han asked if the new cement would prevent future root intrusion and if there were any kind of guarantee. Manager Shickling said the 80 year old tank had lived its useful life, was repaired a couple of times, but had had a lot of joint movement due to earthquakes and shifting. He also said the new tank would have a different construction which would reduce root intrusion, with the walls poured into a circular shape, then wrapped with a high tension cable and sprayed with concrete, reducing the need for joints. He said the joints would also be filled with a rubber product called Water Stop to inhibit root intrusion, and that the trees would be placed further away. Commissioner Swanson asked how the water needs would be met during the construction time, and Manager Shickling said the reservoir is currently out of service.
Commissioner Dalton asked about the proposed timeline and the fact that the bid has not been awarded, wondering if the project would really begin in June 1. Manager Shickling said they believe that theyll begin June 1 although there are some concerns about ordering materials. Commissioner Dalton said she was more concerned about the pipeline phase, and Manager Shickling said that was easier to control because piping is easier to acquire, and they should be able to break ground immediately, plus they provided incentives to move the project along. He also clarified where the pipeline would run, saying it would start at the street corner of Lemon and Valley View, and then up the middle of the park. He noted that there would also be a drain line running down the park, going towards Harbor Boulevard. He assured Commissioner Dalton that the pipeline would not be going through the newly constructed areas at Hillcrest Park.
Commission Han asked what kind of warranty was provided at the reservoir, and Manager Shickling said they typically get one year on materials, but the materials, construction, mixing of materials, etc. are inspected thoroughly by the City at each phase. If the project isnt constructed properly, the City inspector can have the correction made. He said this type of reservoir has had a very long life, and described to commissioners the extensive qualifications that the Citys inspector, materials inspectors, and construction specialists have.
Commissioner Han asked how long the inspection report would last, and what would happen if there were a problem with the warranty. Manager Shickling said the reports are kept 10 years plus, and that if there were a problem with construction, the City would look for a design flaw, and they could go back to the engineer. He said the reports would describe in detail the phases of construction, and that although there is no 10 year warranty, the construction is proven and that the tank will last a long, long time.
Commissioner Keller asked if the pipeline along Valley View would affect traffic, and Manager Shickling said yes, but that there will be signs and flagmen as needed. He said it would eventually affect Lemon due to trucks taking out dirt; however, he agreed that neither street would be completely closed, and that there would always be access for residents and emergency vehicles. Chair Swanson and Director Molendyk thanked Manager Shickling for his presentation.
The Landscape Division Monthly Report for March 2005 was presented and filed. Landscape Superintendent Sereno welcomed Commissioner Keller and opened his report to questions and comments.
Commissioner Spencer asked how the coast redwoods planted at Arbor Day were doing. Superintendent Sereno said the trees are being automatically irrigated on a recently installed bubbler system and that they looked great. He also said during the Citys Arbor Day they planted 26 trees whereas most cities plant only a few trees. Commissioner Spencer lauded Superintendent Serenos efforts at Arbor Day.
Commissioner Dalton asked about the status of Laguna Lake, and Superintendent Sereno said the trees werent in as bad shape as expected, although a lot of trees were removed. He referred to the grant that will allow for tree replacement, saying that once the lake is filled and established, the project will be completed. Commissioner Spencer noted that there were no ducks, and was told there were only a few left.
Commissioner Dalton asked about how long the dredging and restoration of the banks would take. Landscape Superintendent Sereno asked Manager McDaniel to comment, who said the lake is dry, but they will need another month and a half of continually sunny weather to start the dredging. The Engineering Department has said the completion date has been changed to six months or December; however, he said the lake looks good, and described the improvements which, in addition to water quality improvements, included a second project of dam work. He said the next step would be to enhance the picnic area when they find funding. Commissioner Han asked whether the ducks would encourage West Nile mosquitoes, and Manager McDaniel said the City has been working with Vector Control to monitor the lake. Chair Swanson thanked Superintendent Sereno for his report.
Director Molendyk noted the written report on the Special Commission Budget Workshop of February 28, 2005 which was provided to Commissioners tonight, saying that this information was important to prepare Commissioners for the May 9th Commission meeting when fee structure and budget policy will be formalized. He also said that he doesnt intend to go through the entire budget with the commissioners, but rather to say that they are balanced, and to get policy direction to recommend to Council.
Because of the extra time needed to refresh the Commission on the budget, Director Molendyk offered to start the meeting at 4 p.m. like the Council does to deal with any questions the Commission might have, and provide an overview of the budget, then take a break and return at 6:30, or they could start at 6:30 as usual. Commissioner Russell asked that they meet at 4:00 p.m. Hearing no objections, Director Molendyk said they would meet at 4:00 p.m., meet in the Council Conference Room, and adjourn the meeting in the Council Chamber.
Director Molendyk also reported on the following:
Fliers were distributed to commissioners regarding National Youth Service Day which will involve non-profits and the school district, and is a new activity for Community Services. He also noted a VIP parking pass for the commissioners.
First Night in Fullerton would be held Friday, April 29th from 7:00 to 11:00 p.m.
Director Molendyk publicly complimented American Golf for opening the Golf Course so quickly after all the rains, noting the $300,000 of new greens installed in February, re-contouring of other greens and laying of six acres of sod, and an additional $300,000 in golf course renovations. He also suggested a Commission visit in June to the course to see the improvements, which would assist the Commission in reviewing the golf course lease.
Director Molendyk briefly reviewed the following Council agenda items:
The Muckenthaler Cultural Center Foundation proposal was rejected by the Council who asked staff to work with the Foundation and Collettes Catering. Staff will keep Commission informed of any progress.
The Park Bonds Rehabilitation projects which Commission had voted on last month was approved by City Council last Tuesday and would be put out to bid for park design.
New commissioners and committees were appointed and introduced earlier.
The Museum bid which commissioners and Manager Joe Felz have been working on was approved last Tuesday night. Construction is expected to start in about 30 days.
Chair Swanson asked for commissioner comments.
Commissioner Spencer announced that Fullerton Beautiful was having its annual Garden Tour this Sunday.
Commissioner Russell said that the expiration dates for the Commissioner information wasnt correct and thought it was important to clarify this as soon as possible. There was discussion and Commissioner Keller noted that the Council would be revisiting the issue at its next Council meeting so everything might change again. Director Molendyk said he would clarify the expiration dates with the City Clerks office.
Commissioner Russell said he was also concerned about the Sports Complex playground area being closed, and that it raised questions about why, after two years, foul balls are forcing the playground to be closed. He said he wasnt sure if the Commission wanted to set this issue on its agenda, but he was getting calls about this, and some people were upset about it while others were just talking about it.
Director Molendyk said the Department was asked by Risk Management to close the playground, and that the Department tried to just put up a sign asking that the equipment not be used during ball games, but it wasnt allowed by Risk Management. He then asked Randy to comment on his meetings with landscape architects, developers, contractors, Union Oil and the Army Corps, saying they will bring the results of the meetings to the Commission. Manager McDaniel described his myriad meetings, saying they are coming up with potential solutions to the problem, working with a shade structure vendor, fencing contractor and landscape architect.
Possible solutions include a net over the backstop over to home plate, extending fencing another 10 feet, shade structures and a canopy, the last two items which would also provide shade. He noted that budget would be an issue. Commissioner Russell said they would wait for a further report, but said they would assume that a landscape architect would take this into consideration. Manager McDaniel said he was not at the planning meetings but was told by the landscape architect that he had advised against a playground adjacent to the ball field but others involved in the process overrode his advice. Commissioner Russell said the architect should have taken a stronger stance since the decision has resulted in additional costs, embarrassment, angry families and a closed playground. Director Molendyk agreed, and said this would all be reviewed.
The meeting adjourned 8:50 p.m.
Ron Molendyk, Secretary
*Written Material Attached