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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May 05

April 2016 City Manager's Monthly Report

Posted on May 5, 2016 at 10:23 AM by grodericks grodericks

City Manager's Monthly Report - April 2016

Monthly-report.pngWelcome to the City Manager's Monthly Report Blog! 

The City Manager's Monthly Report Blog is a consolidation of issues, communications, and Town activity during the prior month that have been reported to the City Council as part of their weekly email from the City Manager. Sometimes information is duplicated over the course of several emails to the City Council to ensure that it is reviewed.

As I review the information to include in the Monthly Report, to the extent possible, I remove duplicate updates in favor of the most recent - although some will be duplicative if there is other relevant information included; I try to remove information regarding events that have already occurred; and I edit information that requires update - hopefully to make it more useful. Overall, the information is generally the same as it was presented to the City Council in their weekly Council email.

The Report reads with the most recent first. As always, if you have any questions or comments regarding the Monthly Report, please feel free to contact me via email or phone.

My weekly email typically goes out every Friday. 


George Rodericks
City Manager
Town of Atherton
(650) 752-0504

April 29 Weekly Report to Council

1. Budget Calendar for FY 2016/17 Budget 

The next meeting on the Budget was the Study Session for May 4. At this meeting we will be going over the Town’s Operational Budget. This is an overview of each departmental budget and their major components. The budget information presented does not include any proposed salary and benefit adjustments beyond any known merit adjustments, if applicable. The Town is in excellent fiscal health and revenues are outpacing expenditures. The budget calendar remains as follows:
  • Public Meeting #1 - April 6, 2016 - City Council Study Session (Joint Meeting with the Finance Committee) 
  • Public Meeting #2 - May 4, 2016 - City Council Study Session (Joint Meeting with the Finance Committee)
    • Presentation of the Operations Budget
  • Public Meeting #3 - Finance Committee Meeting (tentative May 10 2016)
    • Review of Capital Improvement Budget
  • Public Meeting #4 - May 18, 2016 - City Council Regular Meeting
    • Presentation of the Capital Improvement Budget
  • Public Meeting #5 - June 1, 2016 - City Council Study Session
    • Final Review of Entire Budget to include Special Revenue and Other Funds
    • Review of the Parcel Tax for FY 2016/17
  • Public Meeting #6 - June 15, 2016 - City Council Regular Meeting
    • Public Hearing and Adoption of Budget
    • Adoption of the Parcel Tax for FY 2016/17
2. Marsh Road Project

Notices have been issued for the May 3 and May 4 outreach meetings. Granite Construction has been advised of their award of bid and have started their work on the preliminary submittals and other required information before a Notice to Proceed may be issued. We expect this process to take a few weeks depending on the contractor’s diligence. 

Staff attended a meeting for North Fair Oaks last night and we will be participating in two additional meetings - one on May 3 and the other on May 4. Last night’s meeting was well attended and participants were very engaged with good suggestions to assist with detours, traffic control, and bicycle/pedestrian safety. I was hesitant to support an early recommendation for placards or stickers to help manage “local traffic” as I was not confident that such a regulatory program would be well-received if it was “top down.” However, the suggestion came from the bottom up at the NFO meeting and we will be investigating how to make it work. Other suggestions/comments revolved around the use of volunteers to help manage local traffic, bicycle traffic flow on Middlefield (crossing Middlefield), handing out of flyers, construction parking, additional signage, and temporary stop signs throughout the impacted neighborhoods. 

3. Team-Building/Goals Update

The Mayor and I will be meeting on Tuesday with Nancy Hetrick to discuss the objectives for a 3-4 hour workshop on team-building (with Council and Executive Team). We will be looking for a time/date in late May. 

4. Mayor’s & Council Members Executive Forum (Monterey - June 22/23)

The Mayor’s & Council Members Executive Forum is set for Wednesday, June 22 to Thursday, June 23 - one overnight in Monterey. If you are interested in attending please let Theresa know. 

5. Oak Grove Bike Lane & Bike/Ped Committee Update

As I mentioned prior, Alex McIntyre reported that the Menlo Park Council was poised to move forward with dedicated bike lanes along Oak Grove. He advised that this will likely require removal of all parking from MAHS to Crane Street in downtown Menlo Park. A small portion of Oak Grove runs through Atherton. He asked for staff feedback on the idea. We advised that we had met with Menlo Park about the Oak Grove Bike Route several weeks ago. The Town’s existing BPMP does not identify Oak Grove as a bike route. Our current plan identifies Glenwood Ave as a Class II route which would connect to the existing Class II in Menlo Park on Laurel. However, we recently completed a small study to assess the designation of Oak Grove as a Class II in Atherton in order to connect it to the planned Menlo Park bike network. The study concluded that Oak Grove should be considered for a Class II designation due to the current volume of bike users along it. This volume is likely due to the direct link Oak Grove provides between Downtown Menlo Park, Caltrain, and MAHS. Similar to implementation in Menlo Park, however, implementation in Atherton will require removal of existing parking. The Bike/Ped Committee discussed and supports the approach on Oak Grove. 

Bike/Ped also discussed modifications to the sharrows throughout Town. Staff will be putting together a summary map of the sharrows with suggestions for changes or adjustments. The Committee will also conduct a review and provide some recommendations. Suggested changes will matriculate up to the Council before implementation. Lastly, the Committee recommended that the Town consider additional speed limit indicators (radar) at various locations throughout Town where there are long stretches of bike route. Staff will be putting together some prices on this request for possible inclusion into the Capital Improvement Plan; however, these are relatively intrusive devices that ultimately end up in front of someone’s home. Careful consideration is requested. 

6. Atherton Fiber

Staff and legal counsel met with Atherton Fiber to hammer out the details of an encroachment or franchise agreement. We expect to have a working draft in the next couple of weeks that will be discussed with representatives from Atherton Fiber. Given the timing and discussions yesterday, it looks like this will hit the Council agenda in June. 

Atherton Fiber has a live website that we reference on the Town’s website and will include in this Friday’s Atherton Online. It includes a survey to help get the word out. Until the actual agreement is finalized, we are referring queries to their website, but not actively promoting in partnership. The website is

7. Planning Commission - April 27 Meeting

The Commission met on April 27 at took the following action:
  • Approved the request of PG&E for removal of one heritage Elm at 555 Middlefield Road, MA High School, with replacement planting. 
  • Approved the request for a Special Structure Permit for increased sidewall height and to allow a basement beyond the main building footprint, and approved the request for a Heritage Tree Removal Permit to allow the removal of two trees at 172 Tuscaloosa. 
  • Approved the request for a Heritage Tree Removal to allow the removal of five heritage Palm trees at 95 Mercedes Lane. 
8. Environmental Programs Committee - April 26 Meeting

The Committee did not have a quorum for their April 26 meeting and has rescheduled for May 2. 

9. Public Records Act Request

We are responding to a Public Records Act Request for: 

“...a Public Records request for all of Gordon Siebert’s charges (e.g. attendance at meetings) to the Civic Center and, if he has such a record, a description of actions and the associated time otherwise spent in his "general" capacity on the civic center project in any form…”

“...all costs charged by Mike Kashawagi and/or his firm to the Town of Atherton as a consequence of his work on the Library Building Steering Committee - please include the fund to which these costs were charged (e.g. the Library Fund)…”

10. Fire District Nexus Fee Study

The City Attorney and Fire District Counsel have worked through the issues of the Fire District Nexus Fee Study. The District will be drafting an indemnification agreement that will be reviewed by the City Attorney. Once that is in acceptable form, we will be moving the project forward. 

11. Arts Foundation Open House

As the Council is aware, we have an Art in Public Places policy that allows the display of art through the Atherton Arts Foundation at Town Hall. We are working with the Arts Foundation to host a regular Open House for the resident artist with the first being scheduled for Thursday, June 9 from 4:30 pm to 6 pm. 

12. PAEC Grant through the California Energy Commission

As the Council is aware, we have been awarded a grant of approximately $80,000 to assist with the technical and economic feasibility of incorporating sustainability features (beyond code requirements) into the new Civic Center. The Town is tasked with drawing a Technical and Economic Feasibility Report analyzing the following types of features:

- Making the Civic Center Net Zero Energy or Net Energy Positive
- Providing all heating/cooling with passive architectural features, heat pumps, and/or phase-change materials
- a Cost Benefit Analysis of potential sustainability measures (beyond code requirements), include RE, EE, and Fuel Switching

We will be working with WRNS to move forward with the Report with the hope that upon implementation of Phase II of the PAEC there will be grant funding to support capital installation. 

13. California GOP Convention

The California GOP Convention begins today in Burlingame at the Hyatt Regency. The Convention will go until Sunday. Earlier this week, Burlingame PD made a County-wide request for mutual aid as protestors are expected to be present at the event. Atherton Officer Matt Barrera will be assisting. 

14. SFPUC Waterline

WRNS is working to put together a detailed design/survey of the new location of the SFPUC waterline. The SFPUC is looking for a detailed survey that could be used for easement purposes and further details on the cost-sharing in order to put together a construction agreement. They are not interested in any delay to our project but want to coordinate timing so that the two are concurrent. 

We have advised SFPUC (and I suspect they will support) that the Town assume the soft project costs (engineering, construction management, permit, easement recordation) and final paving/landscaping costs above the new pipe itself. We would expect that they would abandon the old pipeline in place and authorize the Town to either re-use, seal, or other appropriate destruction of the old line (pending sustainability potential analysis for a heat exchange system). The owners of the pipeline would be responsible for all construction and material costs. 

15. Use of Drones

There has been a request from a member of the Council that we get ahead of the drone issue. To that end, I have requested the City Attorney prepare a memorandum on the state of the law with respect to drone use in California and I will put together something for Council discussion at an upcoming meeting (targeting July).

16. Commission/Committee Vacancies

To date, we have received 11 applications for 13 spots across 5 commission/committees. 

- For Audit/Finance, there are 3 spots and we have received applications from new applicant Yogesh Amle and incumbents Jeffrey Lee, and Jim Massey. 
- For Park and Recreation, there are 3 spots and we have received an application from incumbent Bob Roeser. 
- For Planning, there are 2 spots and we have received applications from Nancy Lerner, Sriram Iyer, and Yogesh Amle and incumbent Eric Lane. 
- For Rail, there is 1 spot and we have received an application from Alex Keh. 
- For Transportation, there are 4 spots and we have received applications from Jerome Laugers, Joseph Davis, Mark Cummings, and incumbent Gary Lauder. 

Special Event Permits Authorized as of April 29, 2016
This is a list of the upcoming Special Event Permits approved or under review.
  • May
    • May 1 - 16th Annual Big Bear Run (7:30 am - 12 pm)
    • May 21 - Menlo College Children’s Champions (10 am - 1 pm)
    • May 21 - ECR Cancer Benefit - Circus Club (6 pm - 11 pm)
    • May 30 - Memorial Day BBQ - Circus Club (5 pm - 9 pm)
  • June
    • June 11 - Polo Match - Circus Club (10 am - 7 pm)
    • June 18 - Polo Match - Circus Club (10 am - 7 pm)
    • June 19 - Father’s Day BBQ - Circus Club (5 pm - 9 pm)
  • July
    • July 4 - 4th of July BBQ - Circus Club (4 pm - 9 pm)
    • July 9 - Polo Match - Circus Club (10 am - 7 pm)
    • July 16 - Polo Match - Circus Club (10 am - 7 pm)
  • August
    • August 8-14 - Horse Show - Requires separate Permit
  • September 
    • September 3 - Polo Match - Circus Club (10 am - 7 pm)
    • September 5 - Labor Day BBQ - Circus Club (5 pm - 9 pm)
    • September 10 - Polo Match - Circus Club (10 am - 7 pm)
  • October
    • October 27 - Halloween Party - Circus Club (7 pm - 9 pm)
What’s in the Council Read File?
  • Greenheart Land Company Project Visuals
  • Atherton Living Magazine (Atherton Now article)

April 22 Weekly Report to Council

1. SQL Noise Reduction Study

The County Board of Supervisors directed County staff to conduct an aircraft noise reduction study to evaluate several operational changes at the San Carlos Airport in response to community concern regarding aircraft overflight disturbances. The County Board of Supervisors has asked to review the status of this study and to provide another opportunity for the community to provide input during the April 26, 2016 Board Meeting. Airport users and members of the community are invited to attend the Board Meeting and comment on the process. The Board of Supervisors meeting will be held at 9:00 AM in the Hall of Justice at 400 County Center, Redwood City, CA 94063.

The Agenda for the April 26, 2016 Board of Supervisors meeting is scheduled to be published today at 5:00 PM. The Agenda will again include a comprehensive list of options being explored to address community concern regarding aircraft overflight disturbances.  Following is a link to the Agenda:

2. Employee Recognition Lunch/Service Awards

The Lt and I will be presenting service awards at the Employee Recognition Lunch on Tuesday, April 26 at 11:45 am. This is the “catch-up” initial year and we will be presenting certificates and awards to 16 staff members (13 within the Police Department and 3 Admin/PW). A combined total of 232 years of service to the Town of Atherton. The presentations will be brief and then the employees get a hosted lunch in honor of their years of service. Each of you are certainly welcome to drop through, attend, and share lunch.  
  • David Gomez (PD) - 5 years
  • Krystal Pronske (PD) - 7 years
  • Theresa DellSanta (Admin) - 7 years
  • David Huynh (PW) - 8 years
  • Antoinette Gutierrez (PD) - 13 years
  • Sherman Hall (PD) - 14 years
  • Janelle Miller (PD) - 15 years
  • Steve Tyler (PW) - 15 years
  • Don Dunphy (PD) - 15 years
  • Tim Marks (PD) - 15 years
  • Jennifer Frew (PD) - 16 years
  • John Mattes (PD) - 17 years
  • Joe Wade (PD) - 17 years
  • Anthony Kockler (PD) - 20 years
  • Dave Metzger (PD) - 22 years
  • Brad Mills (PD) - 26 years 
3. CalWater Update

California Water Service (Cal Water) has announced the winning classrooms of the H2O Challenge, a contest through which elementary school students designed innovative programs to practice water conservation and increase awareness about the impact of the state's historic drought.  
The grand prize winner is a sixth-grade classroom at Downtown Elementary School in Bakersfield. The students designed and conducted an experiment to test the impact of greywater on lawns versus freshwater. They demonstrated the advantages of using a 50/50 greywater/freshwater mix as an alternative water source for keeping lawns green while meeting State-mandated water conservation targets. For their efforts, the class will receive a $3,500 grant along with a classroom tent-camping trip to the Santa Monica Mountains in conjunction with the NatureBridge environmental science education program.
Placing second is a fifth-grade classroom at Murdock Elementary School in Willows. They designed a rain collection and timed watering system for their school's 7,500-square-foot garden of native plants. This class won a $2,500 grant along with a pizza party and Cal Water prize pack for each student in the class.
The 3rd place winner is another fifth-grade classroom at Murdock Elementary School in Willows. The class created a campaign that banned the use of plastic water bottles on the school campus, and donated proceeds from the sale of reusable water bottles to support organizations that provide clean drinking water in developing countries. These winners received a $2,000 classroom grant plus a Cal Water prize pack for each class student.
In 4th place is a sixth-grade classroom at Shannon Ranch Elementary School in Visalia. They designed and distributed a pamphlet to approximately 1,000 households in the Shannon Ranch neighborhood explaining local water issues and water conservation strategies. The class received a $1,000 grant and a Cal Water prize pack for each student in the class.

4. Local School Enrollments

In March I answered a question regarding the number of Atherton children in Atherton schools. Following the release of the March City Manager’s Report, Peter Carpenter (via Joan Lambert (MPCSD and Las Lomitas School Districts) verified the information and provided additional follow-up back to me. 

The changes were to include Heritage Oaks Pre-School, a special needs pre-school on the Laurel School Campus. There are 2 students reported here from Atherton. The Atherton enrollment at Encinal increased by 1 student. 

Below is a list by school adjusted by 3 as noted above.

- Laurel School- 16 students from Atherton and total student population of 542
- MAHS- 116 students from Atherton and total student population of 2,260
- Heritage Oaks - 2 students from Atherton (pre-school)
- Encinal School- 109 students from Atherton and total student population of 750
- Selby Lane- 0 students from Atherton and total student population of 694
- Las Lomitas- 42 students from Atherton and total student population of 593
- Sacred Heart Schools- 318 students from Atherton and total student population of 1,118
- Menlo School- 110 students from Atherton and total student population of 795
- Menlo College- 2 students from Atherton and total student population of 800

5. Civic Center Project Display Boards

I have a set of display boards for the Civic Center Project in my office. If you need to use them for any reason, please let Judi or Theresa know so that their location/return time may be managed. 

6. Animal Shelter Services Report - March 2016

7. MTA/ABAG Merger Information

The following is from ABAG PLAN Executive Director Jim Hill. It was directed to ABAG PLAN Board Members of which I am one. 

On Friday, April 22nd, the Administrative Committee of ABAG will be meeting to discuss proposed merger options as presented by Management Partners.  A copy of the meeting agenda and packet is linked here for reference

The study by Management Partners has resulted in seven options to be presented to the committee.  While several of the options are being ruled out for reasons explained in the presentation, the committee will be called upon to focus on Options 6 and 7. ABAG PLAN Board should focus on those two options for the sake of facilitating review of the information.  As noted in the study, Management Partners has recommended to the Committee that they strongly consider Option 6.
There are several statements made throughout the document and report that call ABAG's Financial condition and solvency into question. These statements are not calling ABAG PLAN's financial health, solvency and financial condition into question. ABAG PLAN's financial health as evidenced by the most recent Financial results and most recent Actuarial analysis is "excellent”.  However, there are certain ramifications of ABAG's financial condition that impact PLAN and those continue to be evaluated by the Executive Committee. The ABAG PLAN Executive Committee will be meeting shortly (May) to review and discuss the outcome of Friday's meetings and to assess the impact to both ABAG and PLAN.

April 8 Weekly Report to Council

1. Rental of Space at Main House

As the Council is aware, on March 26 I received an email from a resident interested in renovating and renting the Main House basement or the Carriage House as a child care center for children that cannot attend regular pre-school centers due to anaphylactic allergies. The resident was referred to the Town by Susan Knox and Denise Kupperman advising that the Arts Foundation would soon be vacating the space. 

Staff contacted the Arts Foundation and they confirmed that they have given no indication that they would be vacating the space. I advised the resident that at this time, the Town is not interested in renting the basement of the Main House and that the Carriage House is in the midst of a Historic Preservation designation process and rehabilitation would not be appropriate at this time. 

2. Marsh Road Project

Today was the bid opening for the Marsh Road Project. The apparent low-bid is in line with the Engineer’s Estimate of $3.15m. The 2nd low bidder is approximately $100k more. The next higher bids (6-7 additional bidders) are upwards of $400k to $700k above the estimate. 

We met today with the County staff at the request of Supervisor Slocum and discussed the various outreach efforts in the works, the plan for the project (timing and construction), and the preliminary detour plan. The meeting went well. We will be assisting the County with reaching out to North Fair Oaks. Informational meetings have been set for the first week of May - one focused on the immediate neighbors and the other more widely broadcast (May 3 & 4 respectively). A postcard is in the works for the May 4 meeting. The other will be a more focused outreach. This is in addition to any attendance at a North Fair Oaks organized meeting. We have held meetings with San Mateo County, Menlo Park, MPFPD, Recology, Caltrans, and transit agencies. We are in the midst of meetings/contacts with Redwood City and additional meetings with North Fair Oaks. 

Assuming all the details with the bid(s) are in line, bid award is expected at the April 20 meeting.

3. CalWater Update

The State is currently considering modifying the emergency drought regulations. Interested parties are invited to submit written comments by noon on April 14 and/or participate in a public workshop on April 20th in Sacramento. The State extended and revised the emergency drought regulations through 2016. It planned to revisit the regulations in April after the snowpack and reservoir conditions have been assessed to decide whether to lift or modify the regulations. With April upon us and water supply data becoming known, the State initiated a process to potentially adjust these regulations. The State is particularly interested in comments to the following questions:
1. What elements of the existing February 2016 Emergency Regulation, if any, should be modified and how so?
2. How should the State Water Board account for regional differences in precipitation and lingering drought impacts, and what would be the methods of doing so?
3. To what extent should the State Water Board consider the reliability of urban water supplier supply portfolios in this emergency regulation?
Cal Water plans to submit comments to the State. The public notice can be found at:

4. RFP Responses for IT Services

We received the responses from the IT Services firms in response to our RFP. One is in line with our budget and the others are considerably higher. The apparent low respondent has extensive experience in the public sector and with police agencies in particular. Staff will be reviewing the proposals for consistency with the bid requirements and narrowing the field if necessary. Once the smaller group has been identified, we will enlist the assistance of a member of two of the Council for some feedback and then staff will conduct the interviews. We anticipate award to be at the May City Council meeting with services to begin in June. 

5. Reminder - Committee Alternates

Just a reminder that if you are an appointee to a regional board or body to which you have a Council alternate and you are unable to attend a scheduled meeting, it is important that you contact your alternate in a timely manner to see if they can attend. 

Here’s a brief list of the regional committee/board primaries and alternates. 
  • ABAG: Lewis - Wiest
  • C/CAG: Lewis - Wiest
  • HP Park Foundation: Widmer - Lempres
  • League of Cities: DeGolia - Wiest
  • Library JPA: DeGolia - Lewis
  • Peninsula Traffic Congestion Relief Alliance: Lempres - Lewis
  • Peninsula Clean Energy: DeGolia - Widmer
  • Airport/Community Roundtable: Lewis - Lempres
  • SMC Emergency Services Council: Wiest - Lempres
  • Sub-Regional Housing Board: Wiest - DeGolia
  • Grand Boulevard Task Force: Lempres - Widmer
  • Menlo Fire District - Wiest: Lempres
  • Peninsula Cities Consortium: Wiest - Widmer
  • Cal/Mod LPMG: Wiest - DeGolia
  • Sea Level Rise: DeGolia - Lewis
6. LED Streetlights - Design Samples

As the Council is aware, the Town is currently designing new LED streetlight installations as part of the Town’s Series Street Light Replacement Program. Next week we will be installing 2 samples of each type of light fixture and sending out a survey to the community (news flash, open town hall, etc.) to solicit feedback. The light types will be installed in Post Top lights and Hanging Pendant types. The samples will be installed within the Civic Center (Ashfield Road/Dinkelspiel Station Lane and Maple/Dinkelspiel Station Lane) and within Lindenwood (James/Heather and Linden/Heather). 

7. Park Events and Revenue

Linked here is the Park Events for March and the Park Revenue Log

April 1 Weekly Report to Council

1. AirBnB Restrictions

A resident is inquiring about the validity and application of the Town’s restrictions on transient housing opportunities (AirBnB, VRBO, etc.). The Town’s ordinances prescribe that such uses cannot be for less than a 30-day period. 

We are researching the ordinances a bit to answer the resident’s inquiry. 

2. Commercial Target Accounts - Recology

With the passage of AB1826 and AB341 there are some mandatory requirements for recycling and organic recycling for commercial accounts. The Town does not have a significant amount of commercial accounts in Town, but we do have a few that qualify. These will be receiving a Site Assessment (aka waste audit) from Recology in an effort to identify additional opportunities for diversion. 

Commercial Accounts that will be receiving a Site Assessment include:

- Menlo School - 50 Valparaiso - 52.94%
- Sacred Heart Schools - 150 Valparaiso - 62.67%
- Menlo College - 1000 El Camino Real - 65.22%
- Menlo Circus Club - 190 Park Lane - 82.86%
- Oakwood Infirmary - 140 Valparaiso - 69.23%
- Sodexo - 1000 El Camino Real - 83.33%
- California Water Service - 120 Reservoir Road - 55.31%

Noted next to each is their 4th Quarter Diversion percentage. All are currently in compliance with either or both of AB1826 and AB341 that apply to their operations.

3. Recology Self Assessment

At the direction of the SBWMA and as part of the process moving forward with negotiations of an extension of the Franchise Agreements Recology has prepared the March 2016 Self Assessment. The self-assessment is a review of their first 5 years of collection services. 
4. CalWater February Results

For February, Bear Gulch District reduced its water consumption by 27% when compared to February 2013. The State Water Resources Control Board (State) set a cumulative water reduction goal of 36%. The Bear Gulch District reduced its water use by 34.6% when compared to the same nine-month period in 2013.
As previously noted, the State extended the emergency drought regulations through October. The same prohibitions – for example, using potable water to wash sidewalks and driveways, using potable water during and 48 hours after measurable precipitation, and using potable water to irrigate ornamental turf on public street medians – still apply. After the State assesses the snowpack and reservoir conditions in April, it may decide to lift or modify drought regulations.
CalWater has developed a surcharge courtesy tier for water budget overages. Customers who nearly meet the target will not incur a surcharge. The surcharge courtesy tier is bigger in districts that are meeting the State’s water-use reduction requirement and smaller in districts that fell short. Because the Bear Gulch system met the State’s water-use reduction requirement cumulatively through the beginning of February 2016, water budget overage surcharges will be as follows:
  • First 5 Ccf over-budget -- NO SURCHARGE 
  • 6 Ccf over-budget -- $10 per Ccf over the customer's allotted budget, in addition to the regular charge for the unit.
To notify customers of these changes, CalWater will be sending the attached mailer, which provides additional information.

5. Animal Shelter Proposal Meetings

As the Council is aware, I serve on the County Subcommittee for the Animal Shelter Design-Build Proposals. In April and May we will be meeting (4-5 full days) with the top three proposers to conduct individual Q&A on potential designs and design alternatives. 

6. Fire District Nexus Study and Impact Fees

As advised, the Fire District’s Nexus Study and Impact Fee item has been placed on hold pending the outcome of legal analysis by the City Attorney. The City Attorney has advised that the Town should not be adopting the study and imposing the fee; rather, the fee(s) should be adopted by the District and the Town could collect the fees as a pass-thru - or the District could collect directly. Until this is worked out, the Study and Fee adoption are on hold. 

7. Marsh Road Project

We have updated the Town’s website for the project and provided some chronology of events as they will occur on the project. We have also been meeting with regional stakeholders to work through staging, road closure and detour needs. We are also meeting to discuss community outreach. I have a meeting next week with the County to discuss outreach in North Fair Oaks. 

At this point, the schedule still anticipates an award of contract at the April 20 City Council meeting. Bids are due next week. 

8. Town & Gown Event - May 25

Staff has begun meeting with an organizing committee for the Town & Gown event scheduled for May 25. The tentative time and location is Menlo School from 4 pm to 6 pm. We anticipate that the Mayor will provide a brief “State of the Town” report and begin casual conversations amongst the attendees about how we can work together. Following the Town & Gown event, we will begin scheduling 1:1 meetings with Boards and the Council by District to discuss common issues. 

9. Lizards at the Park

The Arts Foundation is looking into the purchase of two lizards. The lizards are 79”x32” and 44”x24”. Both are about 6” high. They can be wall mounted. The initial thought for mounting is the water tower, but given that the Tower may be designated as historic, the idea may not gain traction. There may be alternative locations for mounting at the Park or at Town Hall that can be considered. The issue will progress through the Foundation, to Park & Recreation, to the City Council. 

10. Circus Club Inquiry about Lighted Tennis Courts

I received an inquiry from the Circus Club that they are interested in determining what the Town’s regulations and requirements are for lighting tennis courts. 

11. Rail Committee Meeting - April 5, 2016

The next Rail Committee meeting is Tuesday, April 5. The Committee will receive input/feedback on the following items: 

- Quiet Zone Update
- Caltrain Electrification CEQA Lawsuit
- Atherton Station Maintenance
- TOSS Lawsuit Ruling
- Prop 1A Potential Litigation Discussion
- HSR Business Plan Review/Discussion

12. Cell Site (Various) - Verizon

As the Council may be aware, we have moved through the required public process for the installation of a few Verizon canister antennae on top of existing PG&E poles. At one particular location, there was opposition by an adjacent neighbor. We moved through the public meeting process and ultimately, as required, the site was approved. However, the resident is not happy with the result and has threatened legal action against the Town. We have provided as much information as we can regarding the installation and have exhausted all local remedy. 

13. Environmental Programs Committee Update - March 30 Meeting

The EPC met on March 30 to discuss the Earth Action Fair and Student Challenge. Both activities are moving forward as planned. Materials are being sent to local schools and there will be flyers/forms sent to potential exhibitors for the event. Work on the movie and showing location is ongoing. The next planning meeting (Committee meeting) is scheduled for April 13 at 5 pm. 

14. Civic Center Project - Cost Estimates

WRNS is still processing schematic design details and has not yet sent all the required information to Mack5 for estimating. It is unlikely that the approval of the schematic design and cost estimate will be on the April 20 agenda and it will need to be an action item at the May 4 Study Session. 

15. Dangerous Animal Permit Holders in San Mateo County

The County has sent out the annual list of “dangerous animal” permit holders in the County. There are 62 permittees. Eighteen (18) different jurisdictional areas have permittees.  None are in Atherton. 

16. California Energy Commission awards EPIC Grant to Peninsula Advanced Energy Community

As the Council is aware, we participated in the Clean Coalition’s grant proposal for Peninsula Advanced Energy Community (PAEC) to the California Energy Commission. The grant request has been selected for award via the California Energy Commission’s (CEC) EPIC Program - for “applied research and development, technology demonstration and deployment, and market facilitation for clean energy technologies and approaches.” 

Final approval of the award is expected in May. The project will kick-off in late June or early July and run for 18-20 months. For the Town, staff identified approximately $80,000 from any Phase I grant award to be used to fund staff and consultant review of the potential ground-based heat pump concept as well as similar techniques for sustainability in the project. 

17. Atherton Fiber - Legal Expertise

We have reached out to a number of legal firms with expertise in crafting a franchise agreement and/or development agreement for Atherton Fiber. We will be setting up a meeting in the coming week(s) with the selected firm and Atherton Fiber to work through terms and expectations. We anticipate that an agreement will come to the Council in May or June. 

18. Financing and Revenue

I have spoken recently about a couple of financing options for Town projects. Of interest are a couple of reports on two vehicles mentioned - the Enhanced Infrastructure Financing Districts and Certificates of Participation. Linked here are some general white papers on both.