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09/24/19 Planning Commission Meeting

Planning Commission Meeting
09/24/19 Planning Commission Meeting (Agenda / Packet) -pdf


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City Council Meeting Cancelled

City Council Meeting
There will be no City Council Meeting held September 17, 2019.


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2020 Yolo County Census

2020 Yolo County Census

click for external website


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Friday the 13th Update for September 11 2019

 

All,

An early edition as I am dealing with a number of things over the next few days and next week.

A couple items:

  • Staff met with some folks this week regarding planning, growth and big picture issues and it was a really good meeting. Staff is working on an overall plan for community engagement, education and the ability for folks to get involved in some key projects like the upcoming Housing Element Update, Climate Change and General Plan Stuff. You can get the gist of what we are working on from the August 30 Friday Update or look for the initial staff report which will go to the City Council on October 1, 2019. Here is the link to the August 30 update (<click)
  • Disappointment last week when the City was notified that we were not awarded a grant for the construction of the Senior Center Project. We will apply again in Spring, 2020!
  • The Hotel Winters enjoyed a “soft” opening the weekend of September 6-9 where they had 3 wedding parties and almost 80% occupancy. The Hotel looked amazing and the staff were excellent representatives of our town. Reservations for the coming week can be gotten at www.hotelwinters.com .
  • As hotel guests arrived, the flow of people into the Downtown was very evident. I was in two establishments on Friday and the customer service from our restaurants and tasting rooms was simply first rate. It just warms my heart when I see our town shine! The excellence we have in Winters is beyond reproach and it showed last week.
  • Getting some complaints about construction on the weekends from the new subdivisions. We are working with the developers to get a handle on both time and days for the many subcontractors.
  • Lots of discussion among businesses and groups on insurance requirements and the viability of events. We are scheduling a meeting with key stakeholders and we are going to figure all of this out. Not need to worry about any of the events in town not happening. We just need to work together on all of this!
  • This morning I participated in the 9/11 observance at the Public Safety Facility with members of Winters Fire and Police. It was a very respectful observation of an amazing occurrence. Our public safety personnel paying tribute to the more than 3,000 people who died on that fateful day was simply beautiful. The passion, commitment and loyalty to service is an amazing thing to see. Thanks to both Winters Fire and Police!

Last week I shared a little bit about my first year working for the City and mentioned that 9/11 was my second day on the job. A little more on that fateful day.

I watched the second plane go into the second tower of the World Trade Center when I was getting ready to come to work on that Tuesday morning at my brothers apartment in Sacramento. He had the Today Show on and mentioned a plane crashing into one of the buildings. We watched in horror as a news camera picked up the second plane roaring through Manhattan and exploding into the second tower.

I jumped into my City car, fumbled with the radio and found a talk radio station which was talking about the attack. On the ride to Winters I heard about the attack on the Pentagon and that they were shutting down all air traffic around the Country. Simply surreal.

When I arrived at City Hall, I ran into the building looking for a television. It was janitorial day and the two people looked at me like “who the heck are you” when I asked them for a tv. I spent a couple minutes trying to convince them that I worked here. Finally I showed the one guy that I had a key to my office and he bought that I was a new employee! The City only had a single, 13” television, no cable with a really cheap antenna with only a 2’ cord on it. I put the tv on a chair, found a bay area news station and got a horrible, but watchable picture and things unfolded.

Staff began to arrive to work that morning a little before 8. We all gathered in the upstairs conference room and watched the news reports and the eventual collapse of the World Trade Center Towers. What I remember most about the moment of the first collapse was our Recreation Coordinator Gloria Marion grabbing and holding on to my hand as the first building went down. We all stood there in silence, me and Gloria holding hands as the massive dust cloud erupted like a volcano on the New York Skyline. The ghostly figures walking from the streets, covered in grey ash in utter shock. We all had a tear in our eye and nobody really said anything.

Later that morning, our Police Chief, Steve Godden came to my office. He told me that all the government offices in the area were closing as a security measure against terrorism. I told him, that being the new guy, I had to ask why Winters would be a target for international terrorism. He mentioned the dam and we talked it out a bit and decided that we would keep the doors open for folks to come by with any questions.

Gloria Marion was one of the most social people I had ever met. From the theatre productions to her side job styling hair, she seemed to know everybody (and she did). That day it seemed like hundreds of people stopped by City Hall to check in. Most of the people were older, many just looking for someone to talk and visit. I think many were as in shock as all of us and just looking for a little reassurance to share some sorrow. Gloria had an incredible personality and a deep, assuring voice. I can only imagine the number of people she gave solace to that day but it was awesome. She and Nanci Mills held court downstairs and made a difference for many.

Because it was a Tuesday, the town was basically closed during the evening. The Buckhorn was open but nobody was there. Downtown was very different that night than people see it today with the Buckhorn and Tienda Liquor Store being the only businesses open in Downtown. The place was just empty.

We had turned off the little City Hall tv and I remember working late into the evening. I called my wife Kathy and we decided that we did not want our kids to watch the television of what had occurred, so she read to them that evening.

As I got into the car to head to my brothers apartment in Sacramento, I ran into Gloria walking up the street from a hair appointment she had with a customer. I pulled over to offer her a ride (she lived only a block from City Hall but I did not know that) and she politely declined. I thanked her for being there for so many people who visited City Hall that day. I also thanked her for holding my hand that morning as things unfolded. She looked at me and said “You looked scared”. We both smiled at each, laughed and I proceeded to drive off. I knew at that moment that I would really like working with Gloria. And she was right, I was scared!

The warmth of a small town sometimes comes out in different ways. When horrific events happen, its nice to know that we have the type of place where when people have some fear and need comfort, they know they have a place to come.

Thanks,

John


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2019 Carnitas Festival

2019 Carnitas Festival

Saturday, September 28, 2019
4:00-11:00pm
Rotary Park
Food and Drinks, Carnitas Cook-off, Live Music and Entertainment and Dancing.
Fun for the whole family.
(See flyer below-click to open pdf)

For more information about this event, please contact Dagoberto Fierros at (530) 794-6760 or dagoberto.fierros@cityofwinters.org


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09/12/19 Lower Putah Creek Coordinating Committee Meeting

Lower Putah Creek Coordinating Meeting
09/12/19 Meeting Agenda


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Friday Update on September 6 2019

City Manager Update Friday Update on September 6 2019
All,

Just a few items this week:

  • The City Council meeting this week had a focus on Valley Clean Energy (VCE) and the possibility of the City participating in their Community Choice Aggregation plan which allows local authority in the purchasing of power and energy. Lot’s of discussion and I encourage people to view the meeting on the City’s YouTube Channel. http://www.cityofwinters.org/live-city-council-meetings/ For more information about VCE and their programs, go to https://valleycleanenergy.org/
  • Lot’s going over the next few weeks, so the City Council decided to adjourn to October 1, 2019 as the next meeting, so no meeting on September 17.
  • Warriors are at home tonight against St. Helena and it will be a tough one!

So, Tuesday, September 10, 2019 will mark my eighteenth (18) year as the City Manager of the City of Winters. It was an exciting week because the terrorist attack on our nation was the following day, September 11, 2001! For those who do not know my background, I grew up in the greater Los Angeles area and that area is a little different than there!

A couple remembrances to share about my first year in town after these 18 years which give me perspective to this day about Winters, California………………..

  • The week following 9-11 was a town hall meeting at the Community Center which was organize in part by Debra DeAngelo and the churches in the community to bring everyone together about the attack. The place was packed with standing room only on to the rear patio. The community had come to share and unite in what had happened to our country. We had a number of speakers including me. The most memorable part of the evening for me was all of the volunteers of Winters Fire lining the back of the room. Many of the speakers talked passionately, but the thing I remember most was the standing ovation for the Fire volunteers in recognition of their service to our community. It was an amazing introduction to me of what was important about the little town of Winters, the volunteers and commitment to community.
  • The mayor of Winters at the time was Tom Stone. Not only is Tom a really great person, but he was highly influential and politically connected in Yolo County (I think he put up more signs for political candidates than anyone). My wife Kathy and I moved our two kids to a double wide mobile home in the middle of a walnut orchard two miles west of town. One of the kindest things is the entire City Council brought us dinner the evening that we arrived. It was one of the kindest gestures we could have ever imagined as our Welcome to Winters.
  • The week after Kathy and the kids arrived was Halloween, one of the most important holidays of the year for kids. Living in the middle of an orchard is not a great location for kids aged 5 and 7, so what the heck to do about trick or treating. I am in my office with long time City Attorney John Wallace talking City business when he looks at me and asks where my kids were going to trick or treat. I explained my dilemma and he proceeds to give me an address on Main Street where Bruce Guelden lived and said to be there with my kids at 6 p.m. and suggested I bring an appetizer and a bottle of wine. It was an amazing night, the kids went out trick or treating with a bunch of other kids from “the country” and it was a chance to for me meet some of the most influential and community minded people in Winters. John saving the day is something I will remember forever. One of the nicest things anyone could have done for a new family in town. If I learned anything from John and Winters is a very home spun perspective that it’s the little things in peoples lives which make all the difference with trick or treating being really important.
  • In March of 2002, we had an election which completely changed the City Council. The original Council who hired me included Chris Calvert, John Frazier, Tome Stone, Harold Anderson and Jiley Romney. In March, the City Council now included Robert Chapman, Dan Martinez, Bruce Guelden along with Harold and Jiley. Three new bosses who did not hire you can be intimidating for a “new” city manager and I was freaked out! I insisted that we have a “strategic planning” meeting for us to get on the “same page” in regards to the direction they wanted me to take the City. We met in the “green room” at the Community Center and the Staff in the meeting included me, Nanci Mills, Police Chief Steve Godden, Shelly Gunby and Fire Chief Scotty Dozier. I had pried a white board off the wall of my office and I asked them to list what was important and what they wanted me to focus on. This included a very measured and strategic approach to growth, Downtown revitalization, Putah Creek, public safety, a new library, working with the WJUSD, solid infrastructure and working to keep Winters as an incredible place to raise your children.

If I learned anything during my first year in Winters, it was about perspective and priorities. Volunteers and community values are critical, the importance of little things (being neighborly and caring about others) and mostly, the inherent goals of the community to move it forward yet maintaining a sense of place, identity and being unique.

In Winters, I have met some of the nicest and sincere people I could ever imaging knowing. I give thanks for the blessings of raising my kids in a town which really does care and the giving I have been able to do in return. 18 years is a while, but I still remember that Halloween at Bruce’s House as if it were yesterday. I’m a lucky guy!

Go Warriors.

John


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ATTENTION ALL SWIMMERS!

parks and recreation lap swim

ATTENTION ALL SWIMMERS!
There is a good chance the pool will remain open for lap swim through the end of October. As in previous years, 15 lap swim October passes will need to be purchased before September 30th in order for this to continue, if that does not happen, lap swim will end on September 29th. Monthly passes are $50 and can be purchased at City Hall or at the Bobbie Greenwood Community Pool during Adult Lap Swim.


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09/03/19 City Council Meeting

09/03/19 City Council Meeting (PDF): Agenda / Packet


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Friday Update: Planning Workshop Edition- August 30, 2019

City Manager Update Planning Workshop Edition August 30 2019
All,

On August 21, 2019, the City held a joint community workshop of the City Council and Planning Commission to discuss a number of key planning subjects including the status of any application regarding the North Area, an overview of the application and plan review process, the status of the General Plan and an overview of key planning issues in California. The Workshop was well attended and the public provided a number of important themes in their comments.

One of the most important takeaways was the importance that the City needs to ensure a very robust process of engagement, information and planning to bring the community into a process of planning all facets of the how, where and the pace of development within the City.

From the City Staff perspective and in my discussions with both City Council and Planning Commission, the message was heard loud and clear!

Key themes in the comments included:

  • The need for a robust community outreach and engagement of residents in planning the City’s future.  Multiple people noted that many of the City’s residents today did not have input on the current General Plan, and they should have input on how the City develops moving forward. Its time to get lots of folks involved!
  • Concerns regarding the pace, location and the phasing of growth within the City.
  • Questions and concerns regarding the current and potential growth boundaries of the City’s planning area.
  • Need for a review on the payoff of the debt owed on the 1992 General Plan.
  • The need for a review of General Plan policies and sections to reflect community values and aspirations.
  • The relevancy and applicability of the City’s current General Plan.
  • The importance of citizen input and collaboration in the planning process, review of the General Plan.
  • The need for a Climate Action Plan to establish baseline expectations for addressing this critical area.

Staff has taken these themes and is incorporating them into an overall land use planning work program which will be presented to the City Council on October 1, 2019.

At the end of the workshop, the Council provided staff with some specific direction on some key items including the following:

  1. Status of Northeast Area
  • Direct staff to maintain the informational website with current information regarding the project and application status.
  1. Land Development Application Process
  • Affirm the described land development application process for continued use with new applications
  • Direct staff to post the steps for a typical land development application process online as an informational tool
  • Direct staff to provide monthly updates to Council on activity related to land development projects.
  1. Status of General Plan
  • Direct staff to undertake an adequacy review of General Plan to identify required and other strongly recommended changes, as well as preliminary budget and funding information for making such changes
  • Direct staff to develop workplan for update of the Housing Element with preliminary budget and funding information
  • Direct staff to investigate mechanisms and a timeline to pay off the 1992 General Plan interfund loan

 Status of Annexation

  • Direct staff to undertake an adequacy review of the location and extent of the General Plan planning area
  1. General Plan Implementation
  • Direct staff to identify funding and prepare a workplan plan for adoption of a Climate Action Plan/Sustainability Strategy.
  • Direct staff to report on the status and adequacy of the City’s infrastructure master plans, including the status of the Flood Overlay Zone (FOZ), and the major projects financing fee program

Additionally, Staff is proposing projects to specifically address many of the themes which were presented at the workshop.  There are many details in development and some things will take time to prepare, (and may be modified) but will be presented at the October 1 meeting.

These include:

 

Public Outreach:

Without question, people at the workshop are interested in participation in planning the future of the City, and making sure that the City’s residents have input into land use and planning decisions moving forward. Making sure that our citizens have this opportunity will be the number one priority.

Staff is now working on the development of a public outreach strategy to maximize community participation in the review and prioritization of general plan policy development.

 

General Plan:

The work program will include the following to address concerns related to the General Plan:

  1. A General Plan adequacy review.
  2. The development of an overall strategy for the update of needed aspects of the General Plan, including funding and an overall framework.
  3. A General Plan Refresh Strategy which will include the overall scope and parameters for policy review, presentation and update of key General Plan Documents.

 

Fiscal Sustainability:

The important of establishing a clear picture of a sound financial future for the City to provide services, maintain infrastructure and sustain critical services such as school, public safety and the wide variety of quality of life services such as parks and projected senior services is critical. The work program will include a variety of fiscal models to help in the decision making process.

 

Public Information:

 

The importance of accessibility of information on planning is a critical part of the overall process. The work program includes:

  1. Maintenance and regular updates to the City’s North Area Planning Website to include project status reports, monthly updates, planning application information.
  2. Regular updates before the City Council on planning applications.

 

Climate Action Strategy and Plan:

 

The work program will include a program toward the update and adoption of a Climate Action Plan. This may include:

  1. Establishment of an Advisory Climate Committee/Commission to work with Staff and consultants in the update and review of a Climate Action Plan.
  2. Development of a Climate Action Plan Document which may include the update of the current draft document and a merge with the draft climate action strategy.
  3. The application of applicable Yolo Climate Resiliency Tool Box policies within City policies and programs.
  4. Environmental Review and adoption of a Climate Action Plan.

The proposal will be one of the most comprehensive planning and community participation efforts in many years for the City.

Stay tuned for more information!

Have a nice labor day!

John W. Donlevy, Jr., City Manager


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Friday Update on August 16 2019

 

All,

Happy Yolo County Faire Weekend! Getting this out so I can go support the Winters FFA students and pour beer for Rotary. Here is the update:

  • The August 20, 2019 City Council Agenda has a bunch of items on it including the Air bnb Ordinance, a Resolution requiring “any” application which goes beyond the City’s General Plan/Urban Limit Line be accepted for processing by the City Council, a bus sharing agreement between the City and Hotel Winters, and updates on the Parking Master Plan implementation and a City Projects Overview. Also included will be the Groundwater Monitoring agreement for our Wastewater Facility, a Proclamation in support of the Yolo Food Bank, Funding for the Salmon Festival and the Street Closure for the Earthquake Festival. For the Agenda or the full Packet click HERE.
  • The Planning Workshop on August 21 at the Public Safety Facility will be from 5:00-8:30. The Workshop will be mostly educational in nature but will cover some of the hot topics of the past few months. Think the ABC’s of planning, Topics to be covered at the workshop will include an update on any status of the North Area/Annexation Project, Overview of the land development application process, Status of the General Plan, Overview of the LAFCO and Annexation Process, the difference between General Plan and General Plan Implementation and Planning Trends in California. Good news on this is that the session will be facilitated and presented by both our Contract Planner Heidi Tschudin and City Attorney Ethan Walsh!
  • The First Street Parking Lot adjacent to the Hotel Winters was paved this week and we expect the marking of the stalls and finishing touches to occur next week. In total, 38 spaces which will include handicapped stalls and a high capacity electric vehicle charging station. Overall, it looks pretty good!

Finally, a big thanks to the “Guerilla Gardeners” who have become an important partner for the City of Winters in maintaining and manicuring the Downtown Area. All through the area from Railroad Ave to Main and First Street, these volunteers are doing an amazing job and showing a lot of pride and “Winters Spirit” in making our community look really good! A shout out and many thanks for a job well done.

Go to the County Faire, support our FFA and enjoy one of the last “free” experiences of its type in California!

John

 


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08/20/19 City Council Meeting


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Yolobus Free ride to the Fair!

Live in Esparto, Madison or winters? Join Yolobus Friday, August 16th for a FREE ride to the Fair! See attached for more info (pdf).


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Friday Update on Thursday August 8 2019

 

All,

A couple of items this week:

  • From the City Council Meeting, the Air B&B Ordinance was continued to the August 20 Meeting with a request for more information on how Accessory Dwelling Units are treated within the scope of affordable housing and as vacation rentals.
  • Approved at the meeting was an upgrade to the City’s Building Permit System with direction to include a “citizen portal” to allow permit applications, payment and tracking online.
  • Mayor Pro Tem Wade Cowan was selected as the Alternate Board Member to represent the City on the Yolo Housing Authority.

Some miscellaneous items:

  • Due to unavoidable issues, the paving work schedule for Downtown streets and the First Street Parking Lot has changed: On Saturday, August 10, Vintage Paving will be doing road work on Railroad Ave and on Abbey St. The south bound lane on Railroad from Abbey to Main will be closed. The north bound lane will be open but moved over to the east side a few feet. Their will be no parking on the east side of Railroad from Main to Abbey during this construction period which is scheduled to be from 6am to 4pm. Abbey St will be closed on the West side from the west edge of the hotel to the First/Abbey intersection. There will be access to Napa Auto Parts and the Barber Shop from Railroad. Vintage will be paving the entrance into Newts Expressway, the entrance into the parking lot and will be paving Newts Expressway. On Monday, August 12, they will be paving the parking lot but no road closure.
  • Congratulations to the Winters Joint Unified School District for their open house and the launch of the new buildings on the Winters High School Campus. A really important sign of the upgrades to the school and the investment the community has in our education system.  10 new classrooms for our students. Well done!
  • Kudo’s to the Downtown Merchants for the Albarino Wine Stroll. A first class event which really took things to a new level! Estimates have the participants at about 400+.
  • For those interested in Planning and Development, mark you calendar for Wednesday, August 21 from 5:00 to 8:30 at the Public Safety Facility (700 Main Street). The Workshop for August 21 2019 will be mostly educational in nature but will cover some of the hot topics of the past few months. Think the ABC’s of planning, Topics to be covered at the workshop will include an update on any status of the North Area/Annexation Project, Overview of the land development application process, Status of the General Plan, Overview of the LAFCO and Annexation Process, the difference between General Plan and General Plan Implementation and Planning Trends in California. Good news on this is that the session will be facilitated and presented by both our Contract Planner Heidi Tschudin and City Attorney Ethan Walsh!

City Hall is extremely busy! A key project I am working on involves the development of a key project list to inform the City Council and the public about the myriad of issues and projects we are working on. Lots of projects which are interconnected means the need to plan the appropriate sequencing to maximize the overall efficiency and effectiveness of how we proceed. For some folks it may seem frustrating but it is just the reality for how we need to proceed.

Finally, I would like to highlight the Police Department’s Cadet Program which provides personal development and leadership opportunities for young people in our community. The young men and women in the program have the chance to not only learn about law enforcement and public safety, but to make a genuine impact on their community and become role models amongst their peers and especially with children.

In 2019, the Cadets have represented the community in a number of events, most notably at the services for fallen Davis Police Officer Natalie Corona. I will share that I saw the cadets the morning of the services, looking amazingly professional and ready to go represent. They shined at the event and those in the Department and I could never have been prouder to have such fine young people wearing the name “Winters” on their uniforms. It was special!

Cadet positions are non- sworn volunteer positions and complement the Winters Police Volunteer Program. The goals of the Police Cadet program are to expose men and women to the various aspects of police work in order to prepare them for a career in law enforcement. The Police Cadet program also helps to provide quality candidates for all law enforcement. Cadets increase services the Police Department can provide to our community and can provide support in the following areas:

  • School, Park, and Bike trail Patrols
  • Community Events and Festivals
  • Safety Presentations
  • Traffic control and scene management during emergencies
  • Senior wellness checks
  • Vacation checks
  • Clerical/ Office Support

The program is administered by Cadet Program Director Officer Alan Pinette and Coordinator CSO Gail Jimenez. For more information regarding the Cadet Program please contact: Cadet Program Winters Police Department 702 Main St Winters, CA 95694 (530) 795-2261 ext 146 tips.winters@winterspolice.org Or download our information brochure by clicking this link: Cadet Brochure

Have a good weekend!

John


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Download Our New City of Winters App from iTunes or Google Play Store

Download Our New City of Winters App From App Store or Google Play Store

Become a civic citizen and engage with the City of Winters like never before by downloading the official app. With features like Community, Parks & Recreation, Events, Business Directory, Things To Do, Report a Problem, and News you’ll find it easier than ever to stay connected with your city with just a few taps on your mobile device.

Community, Parks & Recreation, Things To Do, and Events sections allow you to have all the important contact and destination information in your city with the tap of a button. Learn about your city’s history, demographics and elected officials. Find parks, facilities and points-of-interest along with information, phone numbers, maps and directions.

Report and get updated on issues in your city like Graffiti, Animal Control, and Street Sign Issues directly from your app with the Report a Problem section.

Discover deals and support the local economy through the Business Directory.

Stay informed and up-to-date on the latest happenings and upcoming events through the Events and News.

Download your city’s app and start engaging with your city on a more meaningful level. Become a civic citizen today!


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08/08/2019 LPCCC Meeting

08/08/2019 Lower Putah Creek Coordinating Committee Meeting


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