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Friday Update on January 29 2016

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Friday Update on January 29 2016

All,

This week, the Department Heads and key personnel for each division met to begin discussions on the development of the upcoming City Budget. We will put together a two fiscal year spending plan beginning in late February. My direction to the staff is a very cautious message that revenues will not see significant increases until early 2018, so the theme of these budgets will be “meat and potatoes” (let’s stick to basics)!

Here is a listing of the key items which came from the meeting and will be happening over the next two years.

  • Hexavalent Chromium 6: Changes in State Guidelines on acceptable levels of naturally occurring Chromium 6 will put the City on course to the largest capital expenditure and operations expansion in the City’s history. Essentially, we will be required to re-engineer our drinking water system to add a treatment operation which will include the re-routing of lines, development of storage and treatment. The impacts to water bills will be significant and costly, hitting low income and seniors really hard. Our battle cry as mobs show up at the City Council meetings will be “no the water quality has not changed, just the State of California regulation”. Stay tuned, it is going to get really ugly at some point! L
  • General Plan Update: The City’s General Plan sunsets in 2018 and we will need to do some updating of various “elements” to remain compliant with State planning guidelines. The overall plan is not in bad shape, with most of our key “elements” (Housing, Water, Sewer, Wastewater, Circulation) having been updated in the past few years and they are current. The City most likely will be considering an annexation request for acreage to the north which may soften the blow. In the meantime, we may need to dig up $500k which we do not really have at this point.
  • Community Center Planning: The next BIG project for the City will include looking toward a new Community Center and Theatre for Downtown (probably in the same location). It probably will not be build by 2018, but we need to start moving towards a project.
  • Well 8: Where does water come from???? From the tap, right!!!! Not really, it is pumped out of the ground and the need for additional well capacity may require a new well in the north area of the City. Watch for this!
  • Hotels: Yes, there is an s on the end of that. Look for the Downtown Hotel (which has begun) and a proposal for something out by the freeway. Timing will put the Downtown project way ahead of the freeway, but look for the City to go from zero to two during the next two years. Not a bad thing!!
  • PERS: Pension obligations will play an important role in our budget and financial planning. This is a reality of City business and something we will plan for and begin funding.
  • Fiscal Sustainability. The reality is that most of the current projects which are occurring will not bring revenue up ticks for the City until the first quarter of 2018. We will be re-working our fiscal and financial forecasting models and how we project revenues into the future. Nerds of the world can unite on this, we will be pulling out our notes from grad school and beginning to update our regression analysis and spreadsheet formula’s. It is going to get exciting around the computer, so stay tuned!!
  • Economic Development: The PG&E Project, hotels and infrastructure work will be catalysts to future economic activity on many levels. Look for a combination of staff, City Council and the business community to begin attracting job producing development to town.

The City will begin budget workshops with the City Council and the community beginning in March, so stay tuned.

Some good news on the Senior front!!

  • Key funding approvals for the Blue Mountain Terrace Senior Affordable Apartments was approved this morning!! The project is a go and we should see movement, if not construction beginning in 2016. This is HUGE!! A big congratulations to our team on this led by Domus Development and our Economic Development and Housing Manager, Dan Maguire.
  • Winters Senior Foundation are planning a Reno gambling and party trip for March 16/17. The trip will include a train trip from Davis and a nights stay at Harrah’s Reno. The train trip will be $79.90 pp and the hotel room (double occupancy) is $81.96. This sounds like a really fun trip! If you are interested in going, Click HERE to email Joe Tramontana and let him know your interest. They need a minimum of 10 rooms to make the deal happen, so contact him soon.

Finally, congratulations to those being honored with the Year in Review dinner this weekend:

  • Rebecca and Woody Fridae- Citizens of the Year
  • Jill Aguiar- Theodore Winters Award
  • Barbara Greenwood- Senior Citizen of the Year
  • Rootstock- Chamber Business of the Year.

Have a nice weekend.

John