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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Nov 20

That's A Wrap! - November 15, 2017

Posted on November 20, 2017 at 10:43 AM by grodericks grodericks

Thats A Wrap Logo

Council Meeting Date: November 15, 2017
Video Link:

Details of each item can be found via the links to Staff Reports within the narrative. 

The City Council met for the October Regular Council meeting on Wednesday, November 15 beginning at 7 pm. Following the Pledge of Allegiance, the Council moved to Public Comment and heard comments from presenters advising the Town about the recent Bay Area Air Quality Management District Regulation 11, Rule 18; and a local resident providing feedback regarding the recent Parcel Tax election.

Report.jpegFollowing Public Comment, the Council moved to the City Manager's Report. The City Manager's Report is prepared monthly as part of the City Council's Regular Agenda. In addition to current reports from the City Manager, it includes departmental updates on the various happenings around Town such as reports from Administration, Community Services, Planning, Police, and Public Works. 

After the City Manager's Report, the Council moved to the Consent Agenda consisting of Items 8 through 14. Items on the Consent Agenda are considered routine in nature and are generally considered in one motion and adopted by a single vote of the Council. Included in this month's Consent Agenda were minutes, bills, Treasurer's Report for September 30, 2017, Department Reorganization for Public Works, Acceptance of Work for Middlefield Road Improvements, Caltrain PCEP Agreement, and Rejection of Claims. Following discussion and comments to Item No. 12, Caltrain PCEP Agreement, the Council approved the Consent Agenda. With respect to Item No. 12, Caltrain provided public comment regarding the potential height of centerline poles and noise impacts. The Council directed that staff work with Caltrain to get additional information on potential pole heights and include a requirement within the PCEP Agreement that Caltrain provided the Town with input into pole selection alternatives if poles are going to be higher than 30 feet. The Council asked the Caltrain come to the next couple of City Council meetings to allow the Council to get an update and provide input.  

Next up was Public Hearings Item No. 15 - Request for Tentative Parcel Map for the Civic Center Project. This item was continued to the March 2018 Agenda.

Next, was the Regular Agenda beginning with Item No. 16, Middlefield Road Class II Bicycle Lanes Improvements Concept Plan. The 
Council heard the staff report and discussed issues related to the project involving the creation of Class II Bicycle Lane improvements along Middlefield Road. The Council discussed bicycle boxes, lane placement, striping, widening requirements, public comments, and project timing. Following discussion, feedback to staff and the opportunity for public comment, the Council moved to the next item. 

Item No. 17, Review of Plans for a Proposed Clay Tennis Court at Holbrook Palmer Park and Direction regarding acceptance and use, together with an extension of the Agreement with Player Capital Tennis was next. Following a staff report and opportunities for public comment, the Council discussed issues related to the cost of maintenance, cost for key issuance, number of key holders, requirements of the acceptance of the court donation, damage to the court if there was a drought, water requirements, bifurcation of the key cost structure and expectations for use of the court. After discussion of the issues, the Council formally accepted the donation of the clay court, authorized a 3-year extension of the agreement with Player Capital Tennis and directed staff to return at a future meeting with options for key pricing.

Next, was Item No. 18, a Discussion of Next Steps for Park Irrigation Systems and Update/Direction on Park Statuary. Following a staff report and opportunity for public comment, the Council expressed support for postponing irrigation decisions until after more is known about the Water Capture Facility and discussed the statuary further. During discussion, the Council raised issues related to the cost of refurbishment of the statuary (Diana Statue and Water Fountain), possible vendors for refurbishment, origin of the statuary, and opportunities for fundraising. The Council directed that staff store the statuary until such time as fundraising opportunities arise.

The last item on the Agenda was Item No. 19, Update on the Civic Center Project together with action and direction on various issues related to the project. Following a staff report on each item and the opportunity for public comment, the Council discussed issues related to a couple of change orders for the project (corporation yard landscaping requirements and site security and technology); utility easements, property line issues related to trees and heritage tree removal. The Council discussed the cost of the change orders, the need for each, and the ability to reduce them if possible. The Council discussed the relocation of Town redwood fencing along the west property line to properly reflect the property line location. Adjacent property owners comment and discussed options for fence placement and design. The Council heard reports on the cost model manager, project schedule, and recent actions by the Planning Commission.

The Council discussed in detail, the Commission's approval of up to 18 heritage tree removals. The Council heard that 5 trees were set for removal due to their condition, 6 trees were identified via the Commission and Project Management Committee for possible preservation and 7 trees (#'s 63, 67, 78, 101, 115, 119, & 120) were slated for removal due to their location within the project. Following discussion, the Council directed that staff identify the possible cost, design changes, and feasibility for preserving the remaining 7 trees and return to Council at a future meeting for discussion and further direction.  

Following Council Reports and Final Public Comments, having cleared the entire Agenda, at approximately 11:00 pm, that, as they say - was a wrap!

The Council will hold its next Study Session meeting on December 6 at 4 pm. Tentative items for that Agenda include:
  • Presentation by CalWater on Proposed Rate Adjustments
  • City Council Review of a Letter from Menlo Park Regarding Possible Grade Separation Options into Atherton along the Rail Corridor
  • Discussion of Next Steps for Capital Projects and Funding Following the Recent Parcel Tax Election Results 

George_2.jpgThanks for reading!

George Rodericks
City Manager
Town of Atherton