Winter Storm Warning Yolo County / State of CALocal Weather Alerts

Winter Storm Warning
...significant Mountain Snow Today Into The Weekend... .a Significant Early Season Storm Is Forecast To Bring Snow And Wind To The Mountains Of Interior Northern California Through Saturday Evening. A Couple Of Feet Of Snow Are Possible Above 6000 Feet By Saturday Night Over The Higher Elevations. Motorists Planning Travel Into The Mountains During This Time Frame Should ...Read More.
Effective: November 3, 2017 at 2:53pmExpires: November 4, 2017 at 11:00pmTarget Area: West Slope Northern Sierra Nevada; Western Plumas County, Lassen Park

Winter Storm Warning
...winter Storm Warning Remains In Effect Until 11 Pm Pdt Saturday... * What...heavy Snow Expected. Plan On Difficult Travel Conditions Especially Over The Passes. Total Snow Accumulations: Above 7000 Feet 1 To 2 Feet With Localized Higher Amounts. Between 6500 And 7000 Feet 5 To 10 Inches With ...Read More.
Effective: November 3, 2017 at 2:47pmExpires: November 4, 2017 at 11:00pmTarget Area: Greater Lake Tahoe Area

Winter Storm Warning
...winter Storm Warning Remains In Effect From 5 Am Pdt Saturday To 4 Pm Pst Sunday Above 7000 Feet... * What...heavy Snow Expected. Plan On Difficult Travel Conditions. Total Snow Accumulations Of 3 To 5 Inches, With Localized Amounts Up To 10 Inches, Are Still Expected. * Where...sierra Nevada Mountains From Yosemite To Kings Canyon ...Read More.
Effective: November 4, 2017 at 5:00amExpires: November 5, 2017 at 5:00pmTarget Area: Sierra Nevada from Yosemite to Kings Canyon

Category Archives: City Manager’s Update

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Friday Update

All,

Lot’s going on, so here goes:

City Council Agendas:

 

June 6, 2017

  • Initiation of Weed Abatement Proceedings
  • Amend Landfill Monitoring Services with Wallace Kuhl
  • Amplified Sound Permit Application for St. Anthony’s Fiesta on 6/17/17
  • Project Acceptance:  Walnut Park Phase 2 Improvements
  • Contract with Hdl for Sales Tax Services
  • Consultant Contract with Hansford Economic Consulting
  • Proclamation for Retired Mail Carrier Richard Pitts
  • Approval of City-Wide Maintenance Assessment District FY 17/18
  • TEFRA Public Hearing & Approval of Conduit Financing for the Blue Mountain Terrace Sr. Apts. Affordable Housing Project
  • Intergovernmental Agreement w/Yolo County for Senior Services Funded from CDBG Grant
  • Large Lot Parcel Map for Callahan Estates Subdivision to Divide Existing Parcel into 2 New Lots
  • Cost Allocation Plan
  • Voting Delegate & Alternates for the League of California Cities Annual Conference

 

June 20, 2017

  • Planning Commission Appointments
  • Contract Amendment with Wood Rodgers re: North Area Flood Hazard
  • Update on Well 6
  • Draft Storm Water Management Plan
  • Callahan Phase 1 Final Map & Public Improvement Agreement
  • On Call Contract with Geo-Tech
  • Waste Management Rates Public Hearing and Contract
  • Walnut Lane Roundabout Award

July 18, 2017

  • Affordable Housing Plan for Olive Grove
  • Olive Grove Subdivision Map
  • Creekside Estates Development Agreement
  • Building Fees

 

Other Items of Interest:

·         Staff met regarding issues involving annexation and general plan issues last week. We are working to develop an overall process for looking at the annexation of land within the existing general plan area as well as updates to key master plans and an economic analysis for the City on a long range basis. Plans DO NOT include looking at annexation outside of the current general plan area.

·         A key issue in the City are some locations which generate multiple Police calls. The City Attorney is working on an update to the municipal code to make addresses subject to repeated Police calls subject to code enforcement and nuisance citations.

  • Fire Department will start live burn and wildland refresher training this Saturday and go through the end of the month in the north area of the City.  They will burn during the day on the weekends and at night on the weekdays.
  • Officer Jose Hermosillo was among over 200 officers from across Northern California honored by Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) for their efforts in identifying, enforcing and deterring intoxicated driving.  Officer Hermosillo led the WPD in DUI arrests in 2016, arresting a total of 10 intoxicated drivers in the City of Winters and marks the second MADD award Officer Hermosillo has received.

·         The start of construction for Main/Grant signal will commence on Monday, June 12. This is a four month project, mostly due to new requirements from Caltrans. They required a new type of traffic pole which has a 16 week order window. This means that most of the work on the signal will be completed by August, then the project will sit for the next 3 months until the pole arrives. Government requirements at its best!

·         I had a chance to take a walk through the PG&E Gas Operations Technical Training Facility. It really is the most advanced vocational training facility in the world and I will tell you that it is better than advertised. The commitment to excellence is on display inside the building which I would describe as amazing! They expect most of the construction will be completed by August. A truly amazing facility which will be a benchmark for utilities around the world. The partnership between PG&E and the City in making this facility a reality in Winters is a real feat! Well done.

  • Waiting for re-submittal of plans for the Downtown Hotel for the 3rd plan check.  The building site can be re-graded anytime without a permit, which needs to be taken down 6” and compacted again.
  • The final comments for Starbucks are expected today and will in turn be submitted electronically to Bureau Veritas.  If received today, permits can be issued by the end of next week.  As per architect, they plan to open before the end of August.
  • Chevron gas & car wash are in plan check.  Applicant said the marketing package and financing package are being wrapped up and they are updating plans for Title 24.  Hope to receive the submittal package by August.

·         Staff and Councilmember Bill Biasi met with the Chamber and local business folks to work on Economic Development Strategy. Key topics include the re-establishment of an Economic Advisory Committee and Chamber/City Collaboration. Overall a good meeting which will hopefully bring recommendations to the City Council in July.

·         Fireworks will be on the Monday, July 3. Why?? Mostly to avoid the need to bid for licensed folks to come and shoot the show. We save a tremendous amount by doing the show on the third because there are a lot more pyro technicians available than on the fourth. In the past, the City was blessed with Fire Chiefs Scott Dozier and Dave Kidder who had their pyro licenses and shot the show for free. We are now in a position to hire outside “shooters” and it is really expensive. The costs we save from doing it on the third go into a longer and better show. Plus, folks have an opportunity to go to other shows on the fourth and we get more people coming into Winters to see our show on the third.

Finally, if you know CPR and want to expand your ability to save a life, download the Pulsepoint mobile app on your smart phone. Click HERE to go to their website. With the app, you will be notified if your CPR skills are needed within 300 feet from you in an emergency. The app has an automatic locator of AED (Defibrillators) and you can even get fire calls on your phone for any and all fire agencies you want to follow.

Pulsepoint is connected with Yolo Emergency Communications and you are literally notified of cardiac events at the same time as first responders. Its an incredible resource and I recommend you get it.

Have a nice weekend.

John


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Friday Update

All,

 A short version since most are getting ready for the three day holiday!

 Here are the items on the City Council Agenda’s for the next few weeks:

 City Council Agendas:

June 6, 2017

  • Initiation of Weed Abatement Proceedings
  • Appropriation Limit for FY 2017-2018
  • Infrastructure Transition Plan
  • Amend Landfill Monitoring Services with Wallace Kuhl
  • Amplified Sound Permit Application for St. Anthony’s Fiesta on 6/17/17
  • Project Acceptance:  Walnut Park Phase 2 Improvements
  • Contract with Hdl for Sales Tax Services
  • Roundabout Award for Construction Contract with  B & M Construction
  • Callahan Large Lot Parcel Map
  • Futsal Court

June 20, 2017

  • Consultant Contract with Hansford Consulting
  • Contract Amendment with Wood Rodgers re: North Area Flood Hazard
  • Update on Well 6
  • Callahan Phase 1 Final Map & Public Improvement Agreement
  • On Call Contract with Geo-Tech

         ·            Waste Management Contract

 A couple notes on projects:

          ·            Water and Storm Drain work is occurring in the Newt’s Expressway Alley. So far, so good!

         ·            Starbucks has their permits for the freeway project.

         ·            Chevron has submitted plans for a mostly new station. These are now being plan checked.

         ·            Downtown Hotel has submitted to do some foundation work. Hopefully they will get the balance of their plans in soon.

 Finally, a Memorial Day salute to those who have given their lives in the service to our nation. From the foundation of our country in the revolutionary war to those working to bring peace throughout the world, enough cannot be said in recognition for those who have made the ultimate sacrifice so people can be free. A memorial day service will be held at the Winters Cemetery at 10:00.

 Thanks,

 John


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Friday Update on May 19, 2017

All,

 Just back from a short trip with some really good news and some project updates:

 ·         Our sordid nightmare regarding Chromium 6 may be over!! The judge in oversight of the Chromium 6 regulation issued an order rejecting the attempts of the State Department of Drinking Water to impose new maximum contaminant levels 90% lower than the Federal standard and essentially eliminating the need for the City to implement a massive water treatment program which would have cost the City upwards of $47 million. For Winters customers, we were looking at increases of up to $200 per month in water rates. Literally our prayers are answered! A big thanks to Assemblymember Cecilia Aguiar Curry and Senator Bill Dodd for their support on this issue. We have been dealing with this for almost 4 years and it has been refreshing to have elected officials with common sense working to defend the very real interests of ordinary people!

·         Kudo’s to our Winters team lead by Carol Scianna for their work on the CR6 mess. I cannot say enough about their stewardship of our water funds, dealing with State Regulators and a very common sense approach to things. We all played a role in this issue and we know we had an influence on the judge.

·         The Downtown Alley Improvements along Newt’s Expressway and behind the North side of Main Street begin next week. The improvements will include the replacement of water and storm drain lines. This is a much needed project and will be huge benefit to the entire downtown.

·         Look for the West Main/Grant Traffic Signal Project to start coming online within the next few weeks. For those living in West Winters, it will add some much needed traffic control.

·         We opened bids for the Grant Ave/Walnult Lane Roundabout yesterday and the bid came in within the budget. This item will go to the City Council on June 6.

·         The Roundabout will be a significant project for Grant Ave and will result in daytime closure for a significant portion of the project. The plan includes daytime work hours (8-4) with the roadway closed and detours on Baker Street and Morgan. The roadway will reopen for peak traffic periods from 5 p.m. to 8 a.m. daily. Some items are subject to change, so look for more information as the project gets ready to begin.

·         Soccer Registration for Winters AYSO is this Saturday, May 20 from 10-2 at City Hall or online at www.Wintersayso.org

 This weekend get to attend the graduation of my son from Chico State University! I am thrilled not only for Sam, but for many of his Winters classmates who will also be graduating this weekend. It is amazing how fast they grow and mature.

 Have a nice weekend.

 John W. Donlevy, Jr., City Manager


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Friday Update on Cinco de Mayo 2017

All,

A couple items;

  • Yesterday, Royal Guest held a ceremonial groundbreaking for the Downtown Hotel Winters. A nice turnout with a number of the key investors in the project coming to town. In talking with their team, actual construction will most likely begin at the start of June.
  • Look for the Main/Grant Traffic Signal Project to begin moving in over the next few weeks. Timing is perfect for the project and hopefully it will be completed by the time school begins in August.
  • The Newt’s Expressway Alley behind Main Street received authorization at the City Council Meeting. This will include the replacement of the water and storm drain lines. The plan will not include a re-paving of the alley until after the construction of the hotel. A rough road for a while.
  • Kudo’s to Winters Police and Fire for their work on a horrific crash on Saturday night at Railroad and Grant. The scene was absolutely ugly and the response to save the life of the most critical victim was amazing! Our public safety personnel see people on their worst days, and this was certainly that for the individuals in that crash.
  • The earthwork for the Stone’s Throw (formerly Winters Highlands) Project will begin the week of May 15.
  • The City is accepting applications for the Planning Commission. Click HERE for more information.

Community Items:

  • Congratulations to Project Playground on a successful “Party in the Park”. An absolutely wonderful event for an incredible community project!
  • Soccer Registration is online this year. Go to Wintersayso.org to register players, coaches and volunteers.
  • The Winters Garage Sale in on May 13 from 7-Noon along Main Street and streets within the core area of town. This year’s themes are “the best stuff ever” and “Let’s Make Garage Sales Great Again”. A wonderful opportunity to get great bargains, purchase stuff you really don’t need and see your friends selling those cherished possessions only they really appreciate.

Have a great week,

John


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Big Day of Giving for Winters

All,

May 4 is the “ Big Day of Giving” and an opportunity to make donations that make big difference to the Winters Community. The following are the Winters organizations in this year’s Big DOG and a little information about what they do.

Winters Education Foundation (WEF):

WEF is an organization dedicated to supporting public education and the Winters Joint Unified School District. Click HERE to go to the website and Click HERE to donate.

Winters Education Foundation sponsors a small grant program each year which encourages all teachers to apply for money to advance pet projects. WEF has sponsored speakers from outside the District, has subsidized student transportation to arts and lectures, and has purchased musical instruments, reading material, mathematics tools, etc.

WEF has incredible leadership who have facilitated partnerships with amazing results. They were a key part of the technology project at Winters Middle School which brought computers to the entire 6th grade. They have maximized resources for students and provide support to advancing the quality of education in Winters.

Center for Land Based Learning:

The Center for Land Based Learning is a nationally recognized farm education organization which has literally put Winters on the map for excellence in educating folks about where their food comes from. Click HERE to go to their website and click HERE to donate.

From bringing farms to the urban environment to watershed education, the Center for Land Based Learning helps educate students about farming, leadership and the environment. The Student and Landowner Education and Watershed Stewardship (SLEWS) Program engages California high school students and teachers in meaningful environmental stewardship that allows students to practice scientific skills, learn from natural resource professionals, and expand on classroom concepts, while accomplishing real habitat restoration projects on farms, ranches and open spaces. They also are bringing farms into the urban core, with the promotion of neighborhood gardens through the region.

They absolutely represent the excellence which is Winters!

Winters Theatre Company:

They entertain us in so many ways and bring home into the “hometown” which is Winters. Annually, the Winters Theatre Company brings many an opportunity to act and sing but the many plays and functions which bring our community together. May 4-6, they will have their dinner theatre production “Murder and Café Noir”. Click HERE to go to their website and click HERE to donate.

Winters Friends of the Library:

WFoL is really as star in the Winters Community, bringing literacy, speakers programs and additional hours to the Winters Community Library. Few organizations contribute as much to the town as WFoL. This year, all donations from the Big DOG will go toward Project Playground and the rehabilitation of the Shakespeare Stage at City Park.

Go to https://www.bigdayofgiving.org/wfol to donate. Check WFoL’s website for a schedule of fun activities throughout the day where you can find volunteers to take your donation and to celebrate.

Winters Farm to School Program:

Western Yolo County produces some of the finest food in the world, yet we still have hunger and nutrition issues happening right in our towns. The Winters Farm to School Program raises funds to improve and address that.  Their mission has three interrelated emphases:

– To raise funds to provide fresh, local produce, fruits and nuts for our children’s school food program
– To educate children about the positive, long-term health benefits of healthy eating habits
– To reconnect children to the rich, deeply rooted agricultural heritage in the community

To donate to the Winters Farm to School, click HERE.

Putah Creek Council:

In the past 30 years, few organizations have made a more profound positive impact on the ecological restoration and riparian education as the Putah Creek Council. This organization has literally brought salmon back to Winters and facilitated the enhancement of habitat in ways people could only dream about. They provide education, experience and restoration projects along Putah Creek which have caught the attention of some of the most renowned biologists who are amazed at what has occurred.

Click HERE to visit their webpage and see for yourself why donating to the PCC is important.

Donations to these organizations is an investment in our future. Time to get your credit card out and help these groups do great things!

Happy Giving!

John


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Downtown Winters Hotel Groundbreaking- Royal Guest

All,

Royal Guest and their investment partners are planning a groundbreaking ceremony for site of the Winters Hotel beginning at 3:00 p.m. on Thursday, May 4. They have asked that we pass the word to folks and that all are invited.

For more information, contact the Project Manager, Mike Olivas at mikeolivas@aol.com for details.

Very exciting and see you there!

John


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May 2- City Council Meeting and Economic Development Workshop

All,

The City Council Meeting on Tuesday, May 2 will have two parts:

  • 5:00- A follow up workshop between the City Staff and City Council on some ideas to wrap into an overall economic development program. This will be held prior to the start of the regular City Council Meeting.
  • 6:30- This will be the regular City Council Meeting.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me. Sorry for any confusion.

Thanks,

John


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Friday Update on April 21 2017

All,

We are moving the ball on a number of fronts and this week was absolutely crazy on a variety of projects. Here is an update of things coming before the City Council in the coming meetings:

May 2:

·         Waste Management Franchise Agreement which includes modifications to green waste pickup and an expansion of the organics waste program.

·         Winters Highlands Public/Subdivision Improvement Agreement.

·         Sustainable Groundwater Management Agency– participation of the City in the new Agency.

·         City-wide Assessment District.

May 16:

·         Public Hearing on the Sustainable Groundwater Management Agency.

·         Hotel- Transient Business Improvement District (TBID)- Participation by City hotels in a Yolo County Tourism assessment.

Other items……………

·         The new conference room in the former Police Department is mostly completed, with the last areas of concrete being poured and things going up on the walls. This was an incredible project by our Public Works Staff. A great team effort.

·         Next weekend is Youth Day. The day will kick off at 6:30 with the Rotary Pancake Breakfast, followed by the parade at 10:00, the events at City Park beginning at noon, then an evening concert in Downtown with the Terry Sheets Band. The full schedule will be included in the Winters Express this week.

·         The Parking Committee will be holding a community forum on the Downtown Parking Master Plan on May 3, 2017 beginning at 6:30 at the Winters Fire Department 700 Main Street. More information and the agenda next week.

·         The Big Day of Giving (Big DOG) will be on Thursday, May 4. Local organizations participating this year will be the Winters Friends of the Library, Putah Creek Council, Winters Healthcare Foundation, Winters Theatre Company, Winters Education Foundation and the Center for Land Based Learning. Each of these organizations provide immeasurable services and benefits to our town. Click here to get to the WFoL donation page and into the main system for donations to the other organizations. Give early and often.

·         The three “rock stars” for the Big DOG are Winters residents and WFoL members Sally Brown, Lisa Nalbone and Linda Springer. By my estimation, they will easily clear the cumulative $100,000 mark for Big DOG for the past few years in this fundraising drive. The local programs over the years at the library have included expanded hours, literacy, the neighborhood library boxes, incredible speakers programs and outreach to children. They certainly have made a difference in our community and I know that this year they are planning to help the Project Playground by helping sponsor a new stage for the WFoL Shakespeare Workshop Program held each summer. I know they work really hard at what they do and our community is much better for their efforts in this area. Good job, ladies!!

Finally, the City Council on Tuesday adopted a Proclamation outlining some of the key attributes which make our community what it is during this time of a lot of discord in the public debate. I have attached a copy (pdf – HERE).

 The comments from the 25+ people who attended the meeting were very well put and sincere in helping define some basic tenants on how people should be treated and what defines our community. Winters is a great place to be because much of what is ruining other communities is simply not accepted within the parameters of how we interact in our community. The culture of Winters is simply more kind and deeper than those places where people are more faces and less names.

 Mayor Wade Cowan and the City Council really handled things pretty well on a very sensitive topic. The #1 attribute which makes our City Council Meetings effective is the collegiality in how things are addressed. The discussions are honest and frank, hard on the issues and soft on the people; but mostly, they represent a climate where people feel free to express their views in a manner where disagreement is accepted, input is acknowledged and collaboration is essential.

 Many who spoke at the meeting asked for inclusion of a couple key points not in the published version. They were articulate and passionate in their comments with the final version including additional words which made the statement even more effective. In the end, the collaboration made the Proclamation better and hopefully more meaningful. At the end, Mayor Wade had Councilwoman Jesse Loren read the final version and it was an incredible way to cap the evening.

 Truly what Winters is really about.

 Have a nice weekend.

 John


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Friday Update on Good Friday 2017

All,

 A little more detail this week:

 ·         The April 18 City Council has a lot of business items this week. On the Agenda, we have the Walnut/Grant Roundabout Bid, the purchase of a vehicle for Public Works, permit for the June 23-24 Guitarfest Festival, Caltrans Agreement for the Roundabout, a lease with Martinez Orchards for the use of WWTF land, sale of property for the Downtown Hotel, Youth Day Parade Permit and money for the Senior Foundation use of the Community Center, swearing in of a new reserve Police Officer and consideration of a proclamation of Community Values and Affirmations of the type of place Winters is. See the entire packet by clicking HERE.

·         Staff has made inroads with PG&E regarding the undergrounding of the poles in the “Newt’s Expressway” alley behind the north side of Main Street. We have found a funding source and are working on a strategy to get the utlility lines undergrounded. It will take a little time, but we have advanced the project a bit.

·         The bid for the Roundabout Project at Grant/Walnut will go to bid on Wednesday. Light a candle in church this weekend for the project to come in near budget!

·         The Notice to Proceed has been issued for the Grant/Main Traffic Signal and we will hopefully see things start moving on the project in May.

·         All the civil plans are in for the projects at the freeway which will include the remodel and expansion of the Chevron, Fairfield Inn and Suites and Starbucks. The plan check for the Starbucks has been completed and we are told that they want to be open by the end of the summer.

·         Look for construction activity to get really busy in front of the PG&E Gas Training Facility. There is some pretty intensive work which will need to occur in the roadway and expect some delays at times.

·         The Winters Ranch Subdivision has really turned out to be an incredible addition to Winters. The first occupancy of the two story (smaller models) should be soon. Overall, the project really looks GREAT!

·         Mariani Nut has a significant expansion of their Buckeye Processing Facility. Approximately 250,000 sf of storage, office, shop and processing is at the County. Yolo County is the easiest place to do business anywhere. According to their planning folks, the Mariani Expansion only requires a ministerial permit (over the counter).

·         Congratulations to the Hispanic Advisory Committee on their Immigration Forum. To see the entire forum, go to the City’s Facebook. A HUGE success for the Committee with some really good information.

·         The Parking Committee will be holding a community meeting on Wednesday, May 3 from 6:30 to 8:30 at the Public Safety Facility at 700 Main Street. Lots of information and a chance for input.

·         Good news from the State Legislature which the passage of Highway and Road Funding to fix streets and highways. The City will see the doubling of our road funds to a little over $400k per year which will provide money to do some maintenance on our streets. Big kudos to both Assemblywoman Extraordinaire Cecilia Curry and Senator Bill Dodd (who was an original author of the legislation). Anyone who has driven our highways and then gone to another state can attest that there is a huge difference between driving the wonderful highways and then coming back into California where our roads are completely trashed. Good for California!

·         The Winters PTA will hold their  Third Annual “Spring into Action” Fitness Festival and Fundraiser on Friday, April 21, 2017 at Dr Sellers Field at Winters High from 6-8!  Dance, walk, run, hop or skip to beats of DJ Marcus as we raise money for PTA.  It’s super easy to participate – and attendance is FREE!  PTA is challenging Waggoner and Rominger students to get family, communities and friends to sponsor them.  $15 in pledges will earn them a super cool “Spring into Action” T-shirt; adults shirts are $20. All of the money we raise goes toward our annual efforts to enrich our young people through educational activities, experience and community.  In addition, Project Playground will be selling Buckhorn tri-tip sandwiches to benefit their efforts.  To get more details about the fitness fundraiser and how you can support Winters Combined PTA, please visit us at our website, www.winterspta.org, Facebook at winters Combined PTA, or feel free to contact Winters PTA at winterspta@gmail.com.  Dust off your sneakers and we look forward to seeing you moving your body for the students of Winters.

 Finally, for those of a religious persuasion, this weekend is one to celebrate either resurrection or liberation. A very happy Easter and Passover to all.

 Thanks,

 John


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Friday Update on April 7 2017

All,

Really short this week:

· The City of Winters Hispanic Advisory Committee will host a workshop to address questions, rumors and concerns about immigration issues, community policing and the impacts of recent Federal orders regarding Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). The workshop will include representatives from the California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation who will provide resources and information on legal assistance for those who may have immigration status issues. Representatives from the Mexican Consulate will also be in attendance.

The goal of the meeting is to provide information to Winters residents who may have questions and concerns with much of the rhetoric being spread through many sources about immigration. Representatives from the Winters Police, Winters JUSD, CRLAF and the City will be there to make brief presentations on some of the most popular issues and to help answer individual questions people may have. The workshop will include small groups and individual meetings where people can ask questions.

The workshop is open to all Winters residents, and will take place on Friday, April 7, 6:30-8:30 p.m., at St. Anthony Parish Hall.

To watch the meeting at home or on your mobile device, watch it live on the City of Winters Facebook Page.

Have a nice weekend.

John


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Friday Update on March 28 2017

All,

Sorry for the delay from last week. It was a monster week and when I left the office late Friday night, it just was not there. Here is an update for this and last week.

  • Chromium 6 is our largest issue at City Hall. As an insight, Staff is following a lawsuit filed against the State Division of Drinking Water in relation to the cost and need for the new regulation. The City has filed briefs with the Judge in relation to the case regarding the potential impacts to our water system. I have been privy to the briefs being filed by the State and it is amazing the power and influence the regulatory bureaucrats have to force issues. Literally, there is a small group inside DDW who are responsible for setting the MCL level on CR6 who tell the judge that they have done so to spur investment in research. That means that these regulators are using the process and their powers to force a community like Winters to advance their technology goals through the regulatory process. For us it is the equivalent of being forced to have Winters rate payers finance a $47m experiment!
  • Staff met with the leaders of Project Playground this Monday in a really productive meeting on setting the course for getting the new playground constructed at City Park. Project Playground is led by Emarie VanGalio and Moyra Barsotti. Overall a good meeting and we learned that they have hit the $100k mark for their fundraising (only $250k to go). Follow them on Facebook or view their website HERE. Upcoming events include ribs from Mayor Wade Cowan and a park fundraiser in May.
  • April 7 will be an important Forum on Immigration at St. Anthony Parish Hall which is sponsored by the City’s Hispanic Advisory Committee. The meeting will be from 6:30 to 8:30 and will include representatives from the Mexican Consulate, California Rural Legal Association, Winters JUSD and the Yolo Interfaith Immigration Network. The workshop will be an opportunity for folks to learn the straight scoop on issues related to immigration law, dealing with the Immigration Service and ways to address any status issues. The HAC has been working hard and it will be a really good meeting.
  • The Parking Committee will hold its next meeting on April 13 at the Public Safety Center training room. The Committee held its first meeting with the parking consultant last week and is working toward the first community meeting on May 4.
  • The City Council and staff held a goal setting workshop on March 21. The main issues from the workshop included short term goals including the completion of the Grant/Walnut Roundabout, the Grant/Main Traffic Signal, senior center and services, Blue Mountain Terrace Senior Apartments, collaboration with the Winters Chamber,  development of a Parking Plan for Downtown and the Phase III Creek Project. Longer term items include the development of a seismic retrofit plan for Downtown, a strategy on repairs and upgrades for City streets and sidewalks, Economic Development (including the re-establishment of the Economic Development Committee), the construction of a sports park, a new community center, a community theatre and the re-establishment of recreation services. Overall it was a really nice opportunity to hear the City Council outline their individual and collective visions for the community.
  • Community Services Officer Gail Jimenez was named the 2017 Winters Officer of the Year for the Winters Police Department. This is a very well deserved honor for someone who has played an integral role in some of the biggest cases within the PD and serves a critical position in the Department. Congratulations Gail!
  • The April 4 City Council Meeting will include a lot of business items including the Parade Permits for Youth Day, the bid award for the construction of the Grant/Main Traffic Signal, an agreement with Caltrans for storm drainage, auditing services agreement, an agreement for the sale of recycled water for farming and a land lease for the WWTF.
  • Kudo’s to the Winters Police for their movie night with the night shift last week. Our officers and explorers did an outstanding job with the movie “Trolls” with an incredible turnout. Look for this in the future!

Finally, this weekend was the AYSO Western States Soccer Championships held in Carson City, Nevada and included soccer teams from Arizona, California, Oregon and Washington vying for titles in a number of age groups. I was there as part of the referees selected for the tournament. For the Under 12 Boys All Star Division, the Winters Boys U12 under the leadership of Coach Tavo Correa represented AYSO Section 2 (Northern California) in a 4 team playoff. While they lost both of their games, they represented both Northern California and Winters extremely well. The Tournament Director commented to me that their semi-final game was probably the best game of the tournament.

Our community has a lot to be proud of and one of the most important are the opportunities we give our kids. While we are a small town, we are certainly mighty and this weekend proved that with Winters being in the top 4 out of literally thousands of soccer teams to make this tournament.

I cannot express how proud I was to see the kids and parents trek to the fields in Carson City from Winters on a cold Sunday morning and take the field against communities which have 10 times as many players and teams as we do. Our players showed a lot of heart and class competing against the other teams, with folks impressed that such a small community could make such a prestigious tournament. Our kids were upset when they lost the games, but I will argue that you sometimes gain as much in a loss as you do in a win.

On the sleeves of the kids jerseys, they had a tribute to Winters AYSO Regional Commissioner Alfredo Rodriguez (who died last month) printed to dedicate the tournament to him. I know Alfredo would have been extremely proud of those players. The fact that Winters was even in the tournament is a tribute to the legacy that Alfredo has left our community. The impact he has left will last for many generations, one tournament at a time.

Have a great week!

John


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Friday Update on St. Patrick’s Day March 17

All,

 Happy St. Patrick’s Day. As someone of Irish heritage and a citizen of Winters I give you the following irish blessing (slightly modified for context):

 May the Winters hills caress you.
May her lake and creek bless you.
May the luck of the Irish enfold you.
May the blessings of Saint Patrick behold you

 Now the update:

·         Groundwater will be the big issue at the City Council Meeting on Tuesday with a presentation by Tim O’Halloran from the Yolo Flood Control District on the Yolo “Sustainable Groundwater Management Authority” (SGMA). I have attached some information on the Authority, its membership and what they are working on (click here). Some really good stuff and YES, I am leading off with information about an Irishman on St. Patrick’s Day.

·         HERE is a link to the balance of the City Council Agenda.

·         Good news this week with the opening of bids for the Main/Grant Traffic Signal. The bid ($928k) is under the Engineers Estimate of $950,000. I will share with you that about four years ago, I went ballistic when we built the Matsumoto Lane signal at $600k and the fact that signals now come in at close to a million dollars is just incredible!

·         Yesterday was like Christmas in the City Manager’s Office when I received in the mail two permits from Caltrans for both the Walnut/Grant Roundabout and the Main/Grant Traffic Signal. Kudo’s to the Public Works and Engineering teams (and Caltrans) for getting these projects lined up. By the end of August, both improvement should be in and/or under construction. Getting permits like that is like hitting the lotto twice in a single day. Not easy to get!

·         Last week, we made the moves to get the Walnut/Grant Roundabout moving. In total, the project funding we have lined up will be about $1.4 million. A lot of money, but an equally important project.

·         The Hispanic Advisory Committee is working on a forum regarding immigration issues for April 7, 2017 from 6:30-8:30 at St. Anthony’s Parish Hall. The entire community is welcome and it should be a great opportunity for people to get the straight scoop on what is happening on the immigration front. Kudo’s to the entire Hispanic Advisory Committee, Councilmember Jesse Loren and Assemblywoman Cecilia Aguiar Curry (and her staff) for putting this together to get some good information out there.

·         The Winters Police Department Cadet’s are holding a fundraiser to help support the goal of the Winters PD to initiate a K-9 Program. They are selling raffle tickets to win ½ of a pig purchased through an FFA program (win/win for everyone but the pig). Click HERE for information on where and how to get tickets.

·         Congratulations to Winters Fire on a very successful Fish Fry. As someone who works in the back, I will tell you that the organization was excellent, the fish was terrific and it all goes to an amazing cause! Well done by all!

·         Our Assemblywoman Cecilia Aguiar Curry (Winters own) and State Senator Bill Dodd are working hard on the Chromium 6 regulation to help save our community from a devastating hit from the expense of trying to comply with a regulation 9X lower than the Federal level. I know they are hard at work trying to help us and they are working with the Governor to come to a solution. We have some incredible representation by these two legislative leaders on this (and other) issues. Stay tuned on this and give them an atta girl and atta boy when you see them! Strong representation is what California needs and both Cecilia and Bill are the real deal!

 Finally, the Hispanic Advisory Committee (HAC) and others in the community are working hard to address the concerns of the many immigrants who are an extremely important base group of the Winters community. There are a lot of rumors and politics flying around about immigration raids and threats to children and legal immigrants which are simply not true. The April 7 workshop at St. Anthony’s will be an important resource for immigrants, employers and the general public to get some accurate information.

 An important concern we are dealing with at the City is the negative depiction of law enforcement in this entire political debate between the immigration policies. It is completely unwarranted and harmful, especially for those who are vulnerable. The Winters PD and law enforcement in Yolo County have nothing to do with the implementation of immigration policy. If someone gets pulled over for speeding or is interviewed in relation to an incident, the Winters PD DOES NOT ask for documentation status. The only time immigration and law enforcement cross is when a wanted criminal is apprehended with an ICE warrant. Period!

 People who have legal immigration status and are not committing crimes have no reason to be concerned. If someone has issues regarding their immigration status, they need to address them and there are resources to do that. The current administration (same as the past number of administrations) is bringing light to illegal immigration. The rhetoric from the recent election is absolutely toxic and doing absolutely nobody any favors, from either side of the debate. April 7 will help bring answers and resources.

One thing the HAC and the City Council are dealing with is messaging to try and calm the fears and anxiety of folks in our community. Immigrants have and always will be an important part of the Winters and our nation. They make us strong!

 Winters is an incredible community because it is inclusive and diverse. We are safe because we know each other and we achieve great results because of the collaboration, input and engagement which happens every day. Winters is a place where our children grow and thrive because of the incredible values they learn from our small town. People of all cultures and persuasions make up Winters, California and the many issues which seem to be swirling in other cities and the media does not exist here because it is not accepted. The differences we all bring makes our town stronger and special.

Much like the paella on Fourth Friday’s, the combining of diverse ingredients and spice makes an incredible meal. Winters and our nation really is one big paella feed and we need to support that!

 Hopefully the meeting on April 7 can dispel some of the myths and rumors, give us a chance to help some folks who are scared from the misinformation and genuinely help and support those who need it.

Have a nice weekend.  Everyone is Irish today, thus all beer is green, so off to Berryessa Brewing to share the cheer of the day.

 John


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Friday Update on March 10 2017

All,

I think everything is happening this weekend March 10, 11 and 12! Some key events:

  • Coffee Festival this Saturday at Rotary Park from 12-5.
  • Fish Fry this Friday from 5-8.
  • “Rumors” play by the Winters Theatre Company at the Community Center.
  • Rotary Charter Night from 6-8:30 at Yolo flyers.
  • Shamrock 10K (Saturday) and Shamrock Half Marathon (Sunday).
  • Winters AYSO Select Three teams in either Davis or Concord.

Others items.

City Council Agendas:

March 7, 2017 – All Items Approved

  • Cal Fire Grant Award Acceptance – Golden Bear Pre-Plan
  • CAFR – Comprehensive Annual Financial Report
  • SACOG MOU and CalTrans Agreement for I-505 Overpass Study Report

March 21, 2017

  • Tim O’Halloran – Yolo Sustainable Groundwater Management Act Implementation Update
  • Waste Management Contract
  • Budget Adjustment for Open Purchase Orders as of June 30, 2016
  • Water Management Update
  • Swearing-In of Reserve Level 1 Police Officer Jeff Stanton
  • Recognition- Gail Jimenez – Officer of the Year

April 4, 2017

  • Winters Highlands Public Improvement Agreement
  • Authorization to Bid – Grant & Walnut Roundabout
  • Award Signal Contract

A couple heads up on things:

  • Parcel map for the Marriott, Starbucks and Chevron expansion has been signed and is off to be recorded. Look to be drinking Starbucks by the early fall.
  • Staff filed a declaration with the Judge overseeing the Chromium 6 issue on the economic impacts of the new regulations. Pretty incredible!

Have a nice weekend!

John


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Winters Fire Fish Fry Friday March 10 5:00-8:00

All,

Just a reminder about the Fish Fry this Friday from 5:00-8:00. $15 pre sale and $20 at the door. Winters Fire Department 2017 Annual Fish Fry.  Online Tickets Available at https://events.ticketprinting.com/event/22712

Click HERE for the flyer on Facebook or click on the photo below to open in a new window.

The culinary event of the year and an incredible Winters tradition.

John


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Friday Update on March 3 2017

All,

 Back from a week south of the border! I made it back and was glad they did not get the wall up before we crossed. I would tell you that we had horrible weather but instead, it was absolutely perfect! A couple items this week:

 ·         City Council Agenda is a little light this week with the Comprehensive Financial Report, SACOG MOU for Safe Streets, Acceptance of a CalFire Planning Grant for Golden Bear and the approval of Street Closure for the Car Shows.

·         Sewer laterals throughout the town are becoming an issue. We suspect ground saturation is playing a role from the weather!

·         Public Works is putting the final touches on the Little League Field. It is in great shape and we are excited for a really god year!

·         Heavy storms put our storm drain system to the test and we think we passed! We plan to do some camera inspection of the lines to make sure everything came out OK!

·         Staff is ramping up to work with Project Playground who are looking to do a community build playground at City Park. We will be meeting with their team in the next week to start putting plans in place.

·         On Thursday, the City sold Tax Allocation Bonds as a refinancing of existing debt from our former Community Development Agency. In total, we sold approximately $13.5m in bonds and achieved a savings of almost $2.3m which will be distributed over time to taxing agencies. To the City, it means an increase in revenue of about $58,000 each year!

·         The draft of the Fee Study and Cost Allocation Plan has arrived. Look for this to come before the City Council in April.

·         Pool Manager and Lifeguards are being hired for the summer. The pool opens on April 1for lap swim!

·         Walnut Park had a walk through with the contractor. The picnic shelter needs to be erected and the contractor will redo the hydra seed for the grass.

·         Officer Morgan Hatcher has been selected for the Yolo County Crisis Intervention Team! This is the group who coordinates crisis negotiations and care. A big honor for Morgan and a real feather in the cap for Winters PD!

·         Heroin is becoming an issue in Yolo County and something out Police Department is dealing with! They will be coordinating information with Winters Fire!

·         Chief John Miller was recently appointed to the Yolo County Community Care Board.

·         AB 109 money is now at a deficit in the State, meaning the City will no longer be reimbursed for monitoring paroled inmates into Winters!

·         Deputy Fire Chief Ron Karlen was recently dispatched to the incident response team for the Oroville Dam spill incident.

·         Winters Fire will host its annual Fish Fry next Friday, March 10 starting at 5:00! One of the best events in town in support of our volunteer fire department!! Tickets are available at the Fire Station.

·          City Attorney is working on an ordinance for businesses looking to sell recreational marijuana!

·         Next Saturday March 11 is the Coffee Festival in Downtown starting at 10:00!

·         Winters Friends of the Library will be holding their annual Fruit Tree Sale at the corner of Railroad and Edwards starting at 8:00 a.m.. Get there early (before 8) if you want citrus or the type of tree you are looking for. They will be there until they run out!

 Finally, the Winters community lost an incredible leader with the passing of Alfredo Rodriguez who served at the Regional Commissioner and a coach for the Winters AYSO organization for almost 13 years. I would argue that Alfredo was one of our key Hispanic leaders and someone who has left an incredible legacy in our community.

 A little about Alfredo.

Alfredo was immensely respected within the AYSO soccer community for his knowledge of the game, perspective on dealing with the issues of youth soccer and the ability to quietly run the largest  youth organization in Winters (460 players, 60 coaches and 25 referees). He was a very unassuming leader who could convince folks to give their time and energy to the cause of serving people. The immense respect Alfredo had from those who competed against his teams was incredible to see.

 I worked with Alfredo in running Winters AYSO and cherish the memories of showing up at the school on Saturday morning at 7:00 a.m. to see Alfredo’s car already in the parking lot and seeing the lone person in his sombrero (or that Dodgers hat) behind a paint sprayer marking out the fields. He genuinely felt the kids deserved to play in a quality environment and put his all into making it the best he could. Equally, I would spend time with him at the end of the day picking up the trash and putting away the flags. He gave it his all.

 As a coach Alfredo set an incredible example for so many young men in Winters, teaching the life skills of discipline, commitment, hard work and how to both win and lose with class. As a coach, he taught the players about life within the metaphor of soccer. Players experienced some of their greatest individual success within the team game. They also learned that there are negative consequences for bad actions, with Alfredo pulling some of the best players from a tight game when they misbehave to set the standard for the rest of the team. Whether they realized it or not, they had a tremendous role model coaching them who instilled values and principles which they can take with them for a lifetime. Probably Alfredo’s most important contribution!

 I will celebrate the excitement of Alfredo’s teams going to 18 kicks from the mark in a semi-final and then taking the Davis World Cup in a 2-1 final. Amongst my most cherished possessions of Alfredo and Winters AYSO is a Davis World Cup first place medal and a picture from the Winters Express of a victorious team with the Davis coach sitting in the middle of the champions photo. Equally, I will love the memories of the losses and Alfredo not complaining but rationalizing why “we deserved to lose” and just moving on.

 Mostly, we will celebrate a friendship from a man who was an incredible friend to so many people. He was a genuine HERO of Winters whose love of people, community and others made him as unique a man as you can every hope to experience in your lifetime.

 They say, the wealth of a man is never measured by money or possessions, it is the legacy that they leave behind by the effect that they had on others in a meaningful way. Alfredo leaves this world probably the richest man we have ever known, through his effect on those around him.

 May heaven have a crappy soccer field with a half broken paint sprayer and a need for someone to squeeze two soccer fields into a space where only one will fit. They now have the right guy there!

 Winters lost an incredible member of our community named Alfredo Rodriguez!

 Have a great week.

John


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Friday Update on February 17, 2017


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Friday Update on February 10, 2017

All,

A productive week:

 ·         The big item on the City Council Agenda this week involved discussion of a contract renewal with Waste Management. The issues mostly surrounded moving toward containerized green waste, street pickup and street sweeping. Carol Scianna and the Waste staff did a fine job of reviewing the various options. Council direction was given regarding looking at more frequent street sweeping, community concerns regarding large green waste pickup (core area) and leaf season. Overall, a good discussion and direction.

·         The Hispanic Advisory Committee met on Monday and the main topics surrounded questions related to national immigration policies. The meeting had a good attendance, including Chief John Miller and Officer Jose Hermosillo from the Winters Police Department. The direction from the HAC was to identify community questions and concerns and possibly host a community workshop to bring greater understanding to what is actually happening.

·         The leadership shown by folks on the HAC was amazing!! They quickly assigned tasks for members to begin identifying questions within the community and to determine accurate sources to help folks find answers. It was clearly one of the best meetings for the HAC and demonstrated leadership from the members.

The national debate on immigration and the role local governments play has erupted nationally. This is a FEDERAL issue and our national leaders are the ones responsible and accountable for getting information to residents. It is also their role to deal with the ramifications of what is happening. While cities are the most accessible for residents, the issues being brought are simply out of our purview.

It was important that the Winters Police Department was well represented at the HAC Meeting. Some basic questions which were discussed included how local law enforcement works with the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency (ICE). Here are some basic facts:

 ·         Police do NOT interface with ICE on issues which are not criminal in nature. The police are not agents of ICE and never have been.

·         Police do NOT randomly check documentation of folks (without cause) and only ask for identification in criminal matters. We do not stop people on the street asking for documentation.

·         Police and State Agencies do NOT share data bases on immigration issues. On criminal issues, when persons are wanted for crimes, they are included in the same data sets as anyone else. Wanted criminals go into criminal data bases for wanted criminals. If people are not wanted for a crime, they have nothing to fear from contacting the Winters PD.

·         Cities do NOT defend or get in between ICE and persons in relation to documentation status issues. There are many groups who do that, but not cities (maybe San Francisco, but they could be another country) J.

·         In California, law enforcement will tell you that they absolutely supports the licensing of all drivers, regardless of documentation status. ALL drivers are required to have a drivers license and insurance, regardless of immigration status. It is the law.

·         The State DMV is not in the business of working with ICE on immigration issues. Its just not in their business.

 The interface between local law enforcement and our residents is critical to keeping Winters safe. It would be counter productive for local law enforcement to put a barrier to people reporting crimes, especially undocumented folks who are often selected targets. Anyone, including undocumented people, who are the victims of crimes should always feel comfortable reporting when a crime occurs. Victims are victims and crimes should always be reported.

The Winters community is an incredible place because we are safe, diverse and collaborative on issues which are within our purview. Regardless of race, religion, gender or socio-economic status, folks in our town are residents first. Winters is Winters because we are a place where people are welcome and accepted.

If people have immigration issues, they should deal with those with the applicable agencies. The City has no role in that but individuals do. If you know of someone with immigration issues, they need to deal with that and get it resolved because it is the law. The HAC has had forums on the topic to get information out and I expect more is to come.

 Summary, Winters Police are not in the immigration business, we are in the business of keeping all residents, regardless of immigration status safe. The federal agencies have their job and we have ours.

 ·         This week, I attended the League of California Cities City Manager’s Department Meeting which was held in Monterey. The hot topics discussed were Cannibus, Sales and Use Taxes, Affordable Housing and the California Economy. A couple takeaways.

·         The passage of Prop 64 creates as many questions as it cures. Marijuana is now legal to use, but the business of marijuana, cultivation, the manufacture of products and distribution still has many issues to resolve.

·         A fun fact on cannabis is that there are in excess of $1.2b in “proposals” for permits in cities to build marijuana facilities. That is a lot of brownies!

·         Tackling how sales taxes are distributed is a big topic. The internet market place and who and where the taxes should go is a big question. They estimate that over $1b in sales taxes are simply lost under the current system.

·         Affordable Housing has major issues. Flatly, there is no money for it when it is needed most. That State readily acknowledges that housing is one of the critical issues facing California residents and affordability is one of those, but the Governor is not ready to deal with it.

Finally, the best news in many years was the signing of the concession contract with John and Linda Frazier for Markley Cove. This is a critical move for a business and location which is important to Winters as the “Gateway to Lake Berryessa”.

 The over 15 year odyssey of Lake Berryessa and the failed revitalization plan of the Bureau of Reclamation is hopefully over for John and Linda. They have been a very important business to our community both because of the economics and their generosity in supporting many groups and organizations. The way the Frazier’s (and practically all of the former resorts owners) were treated should never happen again.

The Frazier’s and the entire Markley Cove team have kept their dignity during what must have been the most difficult of times. The decimation of the Lake Berryessa economy, the national recession, combined with the illogical actions of a federal agency could not have been more daunting for John and Linda. During it all, the Frazier’s were absolute class acts and models of persistence in trying to preserve their rights and property interests. Even when the BOR gave away Markley Cove, then re-bid, selected the Fraziers, then pulled it away again, they never gave up.

The Fraziers are absolute symbols of class and role models for people dealing with adversity. They are important to Winters and their business will serve as a foundational element to the eventual re-birth of Lake Berryessa.

Have a nice weekend.

John


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Friday Update on February 3 2017

All,

A couple items:

February 7, 2017 City Council Agenda

  • Waste Management Contract Options
  • Reject All Bids for Walnut Avenue Roundabout on St. Hwy. 128  (Grant Avenue)- The project is under some revisions and will to out again very soon,
  • On-Call Storm Drainage Engineering Services Contract with Wood Rodgers (Renewal/update of contract)
  • Proclamation Celebrating June 3, 2017 as Elder Day in the City of Winters (1st Sat. in June)
  • Resolution to reimburse certain Capital Expenditures made to the City Water System
  • Public Hearing- Second reading and Adoption of Ord. 2017-01 – Second Residential Units
  • Introduction of Ord. 2017-02 – Affordable Housing Interest Rate Requirements
  • Reso. 2017-07 Adopting Tax-Advantaged Bonds Post Issuance Compliance Procedures
  • Reso. 2017-06 Adopting Continuing Disclosure Compliance Procedures
  • Successor Agency – Authorization for issuance of Tax Allocation Refunding Bonds

 Other items:

 ·         Data for the Parking Committee is starting to come in and it is amazing stuff. On December 3, we did an all day count of parking turnover in the Downtown which generated over 48,000 pieces of data. We are now crunching the data and many of the results are telling us about trends which will help in recommendations on improving the availability and efficiency of parking in the Downtown. The core of our Parking Committee includes Sandy Vickery, Gino Mediati, Chris Turkovich, Peter Hunter, Pierre Neu, Wade Cowan, Bill Biasi, Nicki Chapman, Dan Maguire, Kate Frazier and Devon Vickery. These folks have done an incredible job in helping work on parking issues and are making a real difference in improving the business climate for Winters! These folks are really stepping up to help our town.

·         Special recognition to Karla Jenkins at City Hall who input all the data. A really difficult task and she really did a superior job in putting it all together!

·         Congratulations to the  Solano Resource Conservation District (Solano RCD) which was awarded one of 12 2016 Governor’s Environmental and Economic Leadership Awards (GEELA) for its excellence and leadership in conducting environmental education programs in Solano County. Chris Rose and his staff do incredible environmental work in our area and this award is well deserved recognition for the education and environmental stewardship they do to benefit our region. We have some real stars in the area and the Solano RCD is one of those agencies. HERE is the article on the award.

·         Our Assemblywoman Cecilia Aguiar Curry (former mayor of Winters/West of 505) had dinner on Wednesday night with the Governor and new Attorney General Xavier Becerra. Hopefully the conversation surrounded Chromium 6! Cecilia always talked about getting Winters “at the table” and when that table has the governor in one of the chairs, we have hit a high point. Kudos to Cecilia!

·         Last weekend, Winters Fire hosted practically every major public safety organization for training in Putah Creek and the Monticello Dam for a variety of swift water, rapelling, helicopter and search and rescue training. The accolades have been coming in with comments attributable to “Winters Regional Leadership”, “incredible coordination”, “very professional” and “an incredible training opportunity for all the agencies”. Our entire staff did an amazing job of developing and implementing training over a two day period which benefitted agencies both large and small.

 I have always been proud of my association with Winters Fire and the work of our paid, reserve and volunteer staff who really shined last weekend. The men and women of Winters Fire serve our community with an incredible sense of pride and commitment which is second to none. The Department is doing things at levels today which are as complex and advanced as any fire agency in our State. The idea that we are a “regional leader” in the professional development of other fire personnel is a high point. This week brought moments which made me as proud as I have ever been of our staff and where the Department is today!

 I have had the pleasure of knowing the Fire Chiefs from the past 50 years of Winters Fire. They came from a time where finances were frugal and things were tight and required ingenuity to make things happen. They formed a sound foundation which still sets the tone for how the Department operates today. Chief’s Vernon Bruen, Dave Kidder and Scotty Dozier helped lead a committed volunteer force who brought incredible pride and personal sacrifice to making Winters a safe place. The were/are all men of high integrity and were role models for the fire staff. The community has also benefitted from an incredible Fire Board which has been led by the likes of Tony Turkovich, Don Rominger, Jack Thomas, Bob Bell, Kathy Gilpen and Gloria Lopez. I will share that Tony Turkovich who has chaired and led the District Board for the last 30 has served as a fiduciary to the community in positioning Winters Fire for success from a business standpoint. His leadership has been amazing and the community, both District and City, owe where we are today to his stewardship.

 I personally credit both Tony and Scott with getting the Department to where it is today. I wish Scotty was here last weekend to see the leadership of his firefighters with the other agencies. I know he would have been especially proud.

 Finally, last weekend, my wife Kathy and I were honored as Citizens of the Year by the Chamber of Commerce at their “Year in Review” along with Chris Turkovich (Theodore Winters award for service to Winters), Gino Mediati and the staff at Ace Hardware (Business of the Year) and Sharon and Wally Pearce who were named Senior Citizens of the Year. The event at Park Winters was incredible and the entire Board led by new Board President Megan Curry, Past President Kathy Cowan and Executive Director Carrie Green deserve a huge applause for their efforts.

Kathy and I were very honored for the recognition but mostly we are grateful to live in Winters. We both feel that the community has been a blessing on our family.

In reality, the recognition is less about us and more about us representing the many groups and activities we have had the pleasure of being involved with over the years. Winters AYSO, Youth Day, Rotary, Winters PTA and schools, Winters High School, Girl Scouts, Winters Fire, Relay for Life, March of Dimes all have incredible core groups which help make Winters the place it is. These volunteers are the every day heroes who coach our kids, present incredible events and donate time unselfishly to keeping things going in our small town.

 Winters is full of folks who are “all in” putting the community first, perpetuating kindness, service and making it a place people proudly call their home. There are many “couples” whose daily and weekly routines include some form of service to Winters as part of the lives. It is the soul of that commitment which gives our town the strength.

 Winters is especially blessed by the Winters Express led by Charley Wallace, Newt Wallace and an incredible staff who write our story each week, record our history and remind us of the past. They really are the glue which binds both the old timers and newcomers. We genuinely believe the town owes the Wallace Family considerable gratitude for what they have done for Winters. Debra takes a lot of heat for her opinions, but few do more than her to perpetuate the things which make our community special.

 Kathy and I view being Citizens of the Year as a reminder of our obligation to keeping committed to serving our community. Our lives are tremendously enriched by the people who have become as much family as friends. We feel blessed and are thankful for all we have here.

 Have a nice weekend!

 John


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Friday Update on January 27 2017

All,

City Council Agendas:

February 7, 2017

  • Waste Management Contract Negotiation Update
  • Adoption of Ord. 2017-01 – Second Residential Units
  • Introduction of Ord. 2017-02 – Affordable Housing Requirements
  • Successor Agency – Bond Refunding Agenda

February 21, 2017

  • Adoption of Ord. 2017-02 – Affordable Housing Requirements

 Lot’s going on in each of the Departments

 ·         Water Department is valve exercising and flushing is 70% complete. This is a chance to maintain the valves and “flushing” of hydrants helps clean debris from the water system and improves overall water quality.

·         Recent storms has made the creek rise and lots of mud and sediment has been deposited on the lower section of the Putah Creek Trail. PW has been on the trail cleaning up after the flooding.

·         Main & Grant signal project has gone out to bid; bids are due on 2/23.

·         Water Resources Agency WRA is working diligently on the creation of a new Sustainable Groundwater Management Agency (SGMA) as required by the State. Carol Scianna attended a SGMA meeting including all Yolo County water districts.

·         Staff is moving forward on the evaluation of Cr6 analysis for a potential Well #9.

·         Finance and Engineering will be working on a kick off meeting regarding an RFP for Impact Fee Study.

·         Staff is also working on the Compensation Report for State Controller’s office. This details salaries and benefits for all of the staff into a State data base.

·         The Planning Commission unanimously approved ordinance amending Affordable Housing requirements and restrictions on Inclusionary For-Sale units regarding how interest rates are accrued on a promissory note/silent second.

·         The firm interested in a residential project for the Valadez property on Hemenway is working with staff regarding an affordable housing plan which will eventually go before the Affordable Housing Steering Committee.

·         Staff and the City Attorney held a Conference call w/Domas an update on the Senior Center.

  • The Active shooter exercise at WHS on 1/21 which involved several local agencies went very well.
  • The Women’s march on 1/21 was peaceful and well attended. Mostly non political and was an impressive show of support for womens and community wide issues. Well done!
  • Winters PD hosted a taser instructor class for local law enforcement agencies.
  • Police Chief John Miller is working on a Homeland Security grant.
  • The Winters PD has been in the community at various apartment complexes giving bilingual personal security presentations.
  • The next movie night (“Trolls”) will be on 2/4 or 2/10 in the Fire Department Apparatus Bay.

·         Super Police Dog Kepi and her handler Chaplan Robert Duvall were recently on KCRA’s “Common Grounds Program”. Click HERE to see the program. Well done!

·         Monticello exercise will take place this weekend and will include two high angle rescues and search and rescue drills in Putah Creek.  Look for helicopters and four wheelers in the area.

 Finally, tomorrow night is the Winters Chamber of Commerce “Year in Review” where they recognize folks in the community including Citizens, Business, and Senior Citizens of the Year and the Theodore Winters Award. A couple comments on some of the recipients.

Chris Turkovich from Turkovich Wines will be receiving the Theodore Winters Award which recognizes people for their community contributions over the past 5 year. Chris is very well deserving for a number of reasons. His activity with the Downtown business community has been vital to the renaissance and advancement of what is happening, From Roots to Wine, www.Discoverwinters.com ,  Fourth Friday, Highway 128, the expansion of the “parklet” in front of their tasting room has really helped set the “vibe” for our Downtown. Chris has really stepped up to help create Winters as a destination and helped establish a really high bar of expectation for the quality people expect when they are visiting our community. Not only are Chris and Luciana making incredible wine, but they are contributing to the greater good of the entire community. Chris has been a leader in addressing parking issues and he and his wife Luciana has been a active with the City’s Hispanic Advisory Committee. Chris has taken a very positive role in advancing the greater Winters area and is making us look really good.

Ace Hardware is the “Business of the Year” which is really well deserved. Gino Mediati and the entire team at Ace are an institution in our Downtown. Not only do they provide incredible customer service and are an essential resource in town, but they are also extremely generous with the community. They absolutely go beyond the call of duty in helping with fundraising by local groups, sell tickets for the Palms and collaborate with the many other businesses. Gino has become a leader in our business community through his positive contributions to the Parking Committee and in helping with many other events. A very well deserved honor for one of our more important businesses.

Sharon and Wally Pearce are the “Senior Citizens of the Year”. Both have become incredible leaders in advancing issues and activities for the largest growing demographic in our community- seniors. They are founding members of the Winters Senior Foundation, they have helped in the coordination of numerous activities and events, conduct monthly foundation meetings, lunches and  representing seniors with the City Council and within the County. Sharon and Wally are helping change and improve the lives of seniors in Winters today and for years to come!

Congrats to Chris, Gino/Ace and Wally and Sharon. All are incredible examples of the type of people who make Winters a very special place.

Have a nice weekend,

John


  • -

Friday Update on Inauguration Day 2017

All,

 A couple items:

 ·         Winters Police and Fire will be active at Winters High School in a training exercise on Saturday, January 21 in the morning. This will be a full simulation exercise on a couple training goals for the Departments. People will see a considerable amount of activity at WHS but please note that “This is only a drill”!

·         This week, Councilmembers Bill Biasi and Jesse Loren attended the League of California Cities “New City Councilmembers Orientation” in Sacramento. The seminar is a comprehensive look at local government issues, laws and procedures to prepare them for success in navigating the myriad of responsibilities of being on the City Council. I liken it to trying to “drink from a fire hose” with the shear volume of material they are given at the meeting (the notebook is over 700 pages). Both learned a lot and had an opportunity to meet other elected officials from throughout the State. It is really cool with the number of folks who know about Winters and how much the “love” our town! When the Mayor of Palm Desert comes up to you and says she has heard and read about the “good things” happening in our community, you know you are doing some things right!

·         The storm Wednesday night knocked out power to a couple neighborhoods and the East Street Pump Station. The good news was our auxiliary generator immediately kicked (and ran for almost 18.5 hours) on and our staff was immediately notified through our network control systems. It is awesome when things work the way the are supposed to!

·         Russell Street seemed to have taken the brunt of the storm, with lots of trees and debris down, broken power poles and lines along with a really big mess. If you have a friend and a pole saw, go give them a hand this week.

·         Overall, Public Works along with Winters Fire and Police have done extremely well with helping folks impacted by the storms, which seem to be lining up……

·         Special thanks to ESPS neighbors Jill and Josh Nelson and Sally Brown and Jeff TenPas and their patience for listening  to the backup generator on all night!

·         The Winters Music Boosters will be hosting a fundraiser with the show My Funny Valentine on February 4 at the Community Center. Attached is the flyer!

 Finally, today was the 58th Presidential Inauguration which represents one of the most significant symbols and the greatness of our democracy with the peaceful transfer of power from one president to the next. It is a view of history which dates back to our founding fathers and includes elements which were mostly established and written by Thomas Jefferson. No matter your political persuasion, the spectacle of  watching the leaders of the three branches of our government, past presidents,  political rivals and ordinary Americans coming together in celebration on this special day is something which should never be missed.

 As a child, my grandparents took me and my brothers to Washington D.C. and we visited the White House. All they talked about was what an honor it was to go to visit the home of the President and how blessed we were to be Americans. The day before, my grandmother took us to a Sears and bought each of us new dress suits, shirts and ties along with shoes for our visit. My Grandfather wore a nice suit and my Grandmother a new dress. We were incredibly excited and they told us we need to be on our best behavior because where we were going was special and symbolic of the incredible history of our nation. They were so right and the visit is something I remember like it was yesterday. It helped instill in us the importance of service, patriotism and gratitude for living in such an incredible country.

 Our nation is the purest democracy in the world and the inauguration is a chance for the entire world to witness why we are the leaders of the free world. It is a special day and something to be celebrated.

President of the United States has got to be the toughest job in the world! Now, former President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle are coming to California for a well deserved vacation as he leaves the presidency. Hopefully, they will toast the ultimate task in citizen service and what they accomplished in eight years. Whether you agree with the politics, our nation owes a tremendous debt of gratitude to the Obama’s for bringing class and dignity to the White House, working tirelessly for our nation and setting an incredible example for the next generations. They deserve the vacation and the genuine thanks of our nation. Pray that they find success in their next phase of life.

Equally, President Donald Trump deserves our well wishes and prayers that he can fulfill the pledge doing great things (I already think we are great)! No matter your ideology, he is now our President and this is OUR nation and the thoughts and hope that all people will find success is what matters most.   His inauguration is but a beginning point. And as did President Obama, I am certain that President Trump is going to work really hard.  Hopefully folks can find a way to come together, transcend many of the issues which have created division and focus on the common values of peace, freedom, liberty and the ability of all people to pursue happiness. Everyone deserves a chance and we must give him that opportunity.

Have a nice stormy weekend!

John


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