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08/02/16 City Council Meeting Agenda/Packet

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08/02/16 City Council Meeting Agenda/Packet

08/02/16 City Council Meeting (PDF): Agenda / Packet

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Transportation Needs Questionnaire:

The Winters Senior Foundation are working with the City of Winters to identify ways of improving transportation options for City of Winters residents. We invite you to complete the following online questionnaire.

If at any time you are uncomfortable or do not wish to disclose information, you are free to leave questions blank or discontinue the survey. Your ideas and information will be very helpful for us to explore the transportation services needed.

Thank you in advance.

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Friday Update on July 22 2016


 A couple items this week:

 ·         A very productive City Council Meeting this week. The Council approved the height increase for the Marriot Hotel, adopted both the sign and noise ordinance updates, approved consultants moving forward for the Senior Apartment Project and gave themselves a lot of liaison assignments. The Council was busy and have a lot on their plates.

·         The City will see our new Police Chief, John Miller begin work on Monday, July 25. We will swear him in Monday morning but are in the planning stages for a transition ceremony in the coming weeks. If you see Chief Miller around, welcome him to our town.

·         The City will say goodbye next week to Fire Chief Aaron McAlister who will be taking the position of Assistant Fire Chief for Contra Costa Fire Protection District. Chief McAlister leaves an incredible legacy with Winters Fire, bringing 24/7 service, developing our reserve firefighter program, bringing in almost $3 million in grants for new equipment and expanded training. The most significant accomplishment was his efforts to bring enhanced emergency medical services (ambulance) to Winters. He led the effort to take on the State bureaucracy and the result was the creation of the Yolo County Emergency Services Agency and the location of ambulance service in Winters. Under the leadership of Chief McAlister, we dealt with two of the largest fires in the history of Winters (Monticello and Wragg Fires) and have expanded the qualification and capabilities of our entire department. Winters Fire is blessed with an incredible history of volunteers and fire chiefs who laid a solid foundation for the department. Chief McAlister can easily be considered the Chief who moved the Department into a more modern era. We appreciate all he has done for Winters and wish him the best in his new position.

·         The City will also say goodbye to Chief Joseph Kreins who has served as interim police chief for the past 6 months. Under Chief Kreins, we have seen a very thorough audit of the Police Department, a comprehensive staffing re-organization and some incredible leadership training for our officers. The officers will tell you that Chief Kreins is “a cops cop” and I will tell you that he is an absolute dream for a City Manager. He did an incredible job and we appreciate his service.

·         The PG&E Gas Operations Technical Training Center is really moving and we can get ready to see the buildings coming out of the ground. Click HERE for a complete update on this amazing project. I had a chance to walk the project with the City’s inspection team and the construction manager for DPR Construction, Ian Bollinick this week and it is very impressive. I have never seen such a well run operation and a focus on getting things done. An absolutely first class operation!

·         It looks like the Grant Ave/Walnut Lane Roundabout is moving forwarded. Final plans and maps have been recorded with Caltrans and the encroachment permit will follow. The project will be out to bid and hopefully we will see construction move forward in the fall. The bureaucracy of Caltrans is immense and it is a miracle that we have reached this point! Good news!!

·         The traffic signal for the intersection of Grant Ave/Main St is in design and for an encroachment permit with Caltrans. Look for this project and light to be installed sometime after the first of the year. This is a bit more simple than the roundabout, so hopefully we will see things go a bit quicker.

·         Tell everyone with abandoned, inoperable or unlicensed vehicles that they either need to store them someplace or be prepared to get a citation. The Police Department has been giving warning citation throughout town to vehicles on the street and on private properties for those unregistered. The citations going out now are “warnings” but please be prepared for “real” citations in the coming weeks.

·         The Putah Creek Phase III project will be stalled for another year. The impending litigation from the Winters Friends of Putah Creek and obstacles put up to finalize permits simply will not allow construction within the tight window we have to do the restoration project. Look for all of this to start up next year!

·         The City is accepting applications for the Planning Commission. Click HERE for an application. The deadline for applications is on Monday, July 25 by 5:00.

 Thanks and have a nice weekend.


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Applicants Sought for Winters Planning Commission Vacancy

Applicants Sought for Winters Planning Commission Vacancy

The City of Winters is accepting applications to serve on the Winters Planning Commission through July 25. Prospective applicants must be at least 18 years of age and reside within the Winters city limits.

Applications of Interest in Appointed Positions can be downloaded from the City of Winters website (click this link/pdf). A resume may be attached to the application form.

The term of service is four years, or until term end. A two-person subcommittee of the Winters City Council will review the submitted applications and select a limited number of applicants to be interviewed. Applicants selected for interviews will be contacted and scheduled for their interviews.

Drop completed applications off or mail to City of Winters, 318 First Street, Winters, CA 95694. Applications may also be e-mailed to nanci.mills@cityofwinters.org.

For more information, call 530-795-4910, ext. 102.

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Friday Update on July 15 2016


In all, a pretty productive week:

  • City Council Meeting this week will have some key items including, Introduction of our new Police Chief, a potential K9 Program for the Police Department, the height regulation for the Freeway Hotel, second readings for the Sign and Noise Ordinances, the selection of Mayor and Mayor Pro Tem, Valley Oak Playground Easement, City Council Liaison/Committee Assignments and an RFP for consulting services for the upcoming senior housing project.
  • This week we formally announced that John Miller is being appointed as Police Chief. Attached is a press release on the appointment with some background information. The new Chief will be at City Hall beginning at 5:30, at The Scoop at 6:00 then at the City Council Meeting at 6:30.
  • The City is accepting applications for the Winters Planning Commission to fill the vacancy left by the election of Bill Biasi to the City Council. Click HERE for the application or come by City Hall. Applications are due by July 25.
  • The item on the Valley Oak Playground Easement is about the City re-conveying an easement back to PG&E on their property located at the corner of Grant Ave and Valley Oak. This will include the removal of the skate park feature which was developed in the easement. In return, PG&E is giving the City $100,000 for the construction of recreation facilities elsewhere. The basis for the re-conveyance is the fact that skate park is constructed over one of the gas distribution lines. PG&E has initiated their Community Pipeline Safety Initiative (attached) which includes removing structures away from their large distribution lines to avoid problems should they need to do emergency or maintenance work. PG&E has been a really good partner on this and although the skate park is going away, we will work to bring other recreation opportunities. Stay Tuned!
  • Persons representing various interests on Putah Creek met with the Army Corps of Engineers this week seeking to resolve permit issues for two key projects. The meeting was extremely productive and we are hoping to see permits soon.
  • It looks like Caltrans is finally ready to issue the encroachment permit which will allow the construction of the Walnut Lane Roundabout. Good news!!
  • The Winters Friends of the Library Concert Series continues through July on Thursday nights at Rotary Park beginning at 7. This years lineup includes a wide variety of music types. Breakout the picnic dinner, expand your horizons and support one of Winters best organizations, WFoL!
  • Tonight and Saturday, the Winters Shakespeare Workshop will present “Twelfth Night” beginning at 8 p.m. each night at City Park. Admission is free, but bring a donation to help support culture in Winters.
  • Talk with a Cop will be at The Scoop from 6-7 on Tuesday, July 19. Come on by, get a yogurt and meet some of Winters finest!

Finally, Tuesday, July 12 was the 15th anniversary of the day that I interviewed with the City Council to become the Winters City Manager. The City Council at that time included Mayor Tom Stone, Chris Calvert, John Frazier, Jiley Romney and Harold Anderson. To be very frank, I knew very little about Winters and a friend and the executive recruiter were the one’s who convinced me to even show up to interview for a job which paid less than I was making in my then position as Assistant City Manager in southern California. I later learned that I was the only one who showed up for the interviews.

The morning of the interview, we ate breakfast at the Putah Creek Café and when I went to meet with the Council, my wife Kathy and the kids went to City Park and they played on what the kids thought was the best playground they had ever seen. The interview went pretty well and I walked to City Park to find my family. On the way up Main and from someone who was an “economic development guy”, the Downtown looked pretty closed with only the PC Café, Ace Hardware and the bank open. Everything else was empty which was a big red flag!

They called me later that afternoon and asked me to come back the following Thursday to talk some more about the position. My tour guide that day was Harold Anderson who took me to lunch at the Rotary Club. At lunch, I met a wide band of friendly characters who I would later come to know as Charley Wallace, Robert Chapman, John Greenwood, Bill Cody, Larry Justus, Mike Kimes and others. They left an indelible impression on me of people who really cared about this little town.

After lunch, Kathy and I met with Jiley Romney, John Wallace (city attorney) and Mary Jo Rodolfo (who was John’s Assistant and President of the WJUSD Trustees). We talked about the schools and a number of subjects, but mostly about what a wonderful place Winters is to raise your children. I will tell you that both the lunch and the meeting at John’s office with Jiley and Mary Jo was a life altering experience from a quality of life and family perspective. These folks genuinely cared about their community and the importance it made to the quality of life for them and their children.

Over the course of the next couple weeks, the City offered and I accepted the position. I will tell you that it can be pretty scary making a decision to pack up your family and move 500 miles to a place (in the middle of nowhere- in my then view) that you had only discovered a few months prior. We packed up and sold our house and the result has been one of the best decisions I think I could have ever made in my life.

In 15 years, I have learned and appreciate what an incredible community and quality of life we have in Winters. From a professional standpoint, I have been blessed to work with incredible City Council members (20) and the best staff any city manager could dream of having! My hiring strategy has been to find folks who really love this town and it has paid off in what has become one of the most recognized cities in the region. From a personal standpoint, I have met some of the kindest and caring community members any town could imagine having as residents. Winters is essentially a dysfunctional family who are extremely loyal to the town, fight a bit about some things, but when it really matters, they come together to celebrate what a special place we really have.

Have a nice weekend!

John W. Donlevy, Jr., City Manager

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07/19/16 City Council Meeting

07/19/16 City Council Meeting (PDF): Agenda / Packet

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Scheduled Gas Release- Monday July 11, 2016


Just a heads up, PG&E has a scheduled gas release on Monday, July 11th between 7am-4pm from the transmission station located north of the City. Be advised this release can be extremely loud, often sounding like a “jet engine”. We sometimes receive 911 calls from concerned residents in the area.

This happens about once a year and can cause some excitement. It is part of their normal maintenance.


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Friday Update on July 8 2016


A couple items for the week:

  • The positive news for the week was the transition of the City Council. Councilmembers Bill Biasi and Jesse Loren were sworn in and Councilmembers Woody Fridae and Wade Cowan stepped down. It is a time of mixed emotions as we celebrate the enthusiasm and potential of Jesse and Bill, while recognizing the quality community service of both Woody and Wade. After the meeting we all went to the Buckhorn for a glass of wine in celebration and thanks. Its something which happens in Winters and is pretty special!
  • The sour note is the Chromium 6 saga and requirements for the City and infrastructure improvements just keeps getting worse. Staff met with our consulting team and the costs for infrastructure to meet the State regulations is now somewhere between $24 and $30 Million. Our estimates on costs have rates increasing between $90 and 100 per month per household. We are refining the plan and intend to take it to the Department of Drinking Water (DDW) staff. We also plan on setting briefings with legislative advocacy and legal justice groups to get them in the loop on the effects on lower income households. Just crazy!!
  • Background continues on the Police Chief and I think we are really close. The announcement and introduction of the new Chief may come as early as next week!
  • Kudo’s to all involved with the Fireworks show this week. Special  thanks to the event coordinator Karla Jenkins, all the lifeguards who helped collect money and especially Nanci Mills who quietly get everything to happen!
  • Interviews for Parking Consultants for the Downtown will occur next week!

Finally, prayers need to go out to way too many families across our country. The tragedy in Dallas is absolutely numbing for those injured and murdered by someone seeking random vengeance against those who put their lives on the line to protect us. The men and women in law enforcement are heroes every day doing a job most of us couldn’t handle for 5 minutes. Light a candle for the families, friends and colleagues impacted from the violence last night. President Obama was right on as he called it a despicable attack on our law enforcement.

The tragic incidents in Minneapolis and Baton Rouge bring to light many of the endemic issues facing city government, law enforcement and society. The amount of violence in society today is now brought to life right before our eyes through social media. From a City perspective, it means higher accountability for our law enforcement and the importance of connecting with all facets of our communities. For society, it means looking at solutions to breaking down the barriers which facilitates the discord which leads to the use of violence by all parties.

On Monday, we celebrated the 240th anniversary of our Declaration of Independence which led to the creation of the greatest democracy and nation on earth. The second paragraph begins with “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.” These words embody the soul of our national pride. Some of this seems to have been lost in the last few days!!

Dr Martin Luther King said “If we do an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth, we will be a blind and toothless nation.”

Somehow, leaders throughout all facets of society need to come together and find the solutions to bring our communities together to transcend the violence and injustice which seems to be tearing us apart and weakening the spirit of our great nation. Dr Kings words are powerful because the represent the importance of avoiding retribution and the need to seek togetherness in keeping us strong.

As a City and a community, it really does begin with us to do our part in finding those solutions.


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Friday Update for Independence Weekend 2016


Happy Independence Day weekend! The past couple of weeks have been busy and lots going on over the next few.

  • The City Council Meeting on July 5 will include the certification of the election, swearing in of new City Councilmembers Bill Biasi and Jesse Loren and recognition to both Woody Fridae and Wade Cowan who will be stepping down.
  • Also on the agenda will be a public hearing on an update to the affordable housing ordinance, an update to the City’s sign ordinance, a revised nuisance abatement ordinance, dealing with a vacancy on the planning commission (with the election of Bill Biasi) and a lease agreement for the former library.
  • It looks like we have a new Police Chief with the person selected in background now with a public announcement happening once that is completed. I will share with you that I am really excited for the Winters Police Department and our community!
  • The Planning Commission has approved site plan, design review and a conditional use permit for the remodel of Chevron, a Starbucks Café and a 72 room Marriot Fairfield Inn to be located at Grant Ave and Matsumoto Lane. The Planning Commission also recommended a “planned development overlay” for the hotel property which will allow the building to be built to 46’. The PD will go to the City Council on July 19. The developers indicated that the project will most likely begin construction “in the spring” 2017.
  • The Planning Commission and staff were really impressive. There was a lot of material to go through, there was complexity to both the architectural and civil plans yet the Commission was very well prepared and did a comprehensive review. Kudo’s to the entire Planning Commission for their preparedness and work along with our Associate Planner Jenna Moser and Contract Planner Dave Dowswell.
  • Winters Fire responded to a significant fire on Main Street on Tuesday evening. The home was ablaze when our units arrived and the fire staff did an amazing job of protecting the neighboring structures and putting out the fire. Kudos to all of the Winters Staff along with the other agencies who responded. Condolences to the residents who lost almost everything, including a pet dog.
  • Winters Fire, the residents of Golden Bear Estates and Positas Drive all request that people show caution when using fireworks this year! In 2014 and 15, we have been home to two of the largest fires in Northern California with both the Monticello and Wragg fires. For those who respond and those affected in the rural areas, we would like to avoid a three peat. Please be careful and only use fireworks in safe areas away from comustables.
  • A reminder that the City Fireworks Show will be on Sunday, July 3 at Dr. Sellers Field. All the legal and illegal will be on July 4th!

On Tuesday, the City Council will go through an official “reorganization” which includes the swearing in of new council members, the selection of Mayor and Mayor Pro Tem and the beginning of a two year cycle of leadership on the City Council. From a City perspective, it is a big deal with the closure of one “Council” and the beginning of the next.

The 2014-16 City Council, consisting of Mayor Cecilia Aguiar Curry, Mayor Pro tem Woody Fridae and Council Members Harold Anderson, Wade Cowan and Pierre Neu have had an extremely busy two year period. Here are a few of the highlights:

  • Construction of the Putah Creek Car Bridge. The life expectancy is easily 200 years.
  • Setting the stage for both the Downtown and freeway hotels.
  • The emergency of our Downtown to an incredible economic level of vitality.
  • Approval of the 60 unit Blue Mountain Terrace Senior Affordable Apartments which will see construction in early 2017.
  • The acquisition of a grant for a new Senior Center.
  • Recruitment, review and approval of the PG&E Gas Operations Training Center.
  • Addressing pension issues in relation to the City budget.
  • Amendments to key subdivision agreements which will provide for quality market rate housing.
  • Dealing with both the Monticello and Wragg Fires.

The list of accomplishments big and small is absolutely amazing. This Council has been one of the hardest working groups in my tenure as City Manager. These folks work long hours for practically no pay but really big expectations!

In Winters, being on the City Council really is “citizen service”. Compared to larger cities, being on the City Council of a small town can be considerably more demanding and taxing. The need for constant involvement and the ease of access compared to larger communities in not comparable! Our Council works really hard! A sincere congratulations and thanks to each on this council for their service

Finally, a wish to all for a wonderful Independence Weekend. In the United States, we celebrate our independence from tyrannical governance and the longest running democracy in history. We are blessed with freedoms most can only dream of! While you are celebrating with friends and family, take time to celebrate the men and women throughout the world who keep our freedoms alive along with those in public safety here at home who maintain the security of our communities.

This is one of the craziest weekends of the year, so please be safe.

Have a nice weekend.


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07/05/16 City Council Meeting

07/05/16 City Council Meeting (pdf): Agenda / Packet

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County Advisory Committee Vacancies

Dear friends,

It takes many hands and minds working together to support our community.  From advising on Yolo County’s mental health policies, to supporting vulnerable children and adults, there are multiple opportunities to serve.

I am seeking candidates to represent District 2 on the below listed county advisory committees.

Applications can be submitted at: http://bosmembership.yolocounty.org/

Please feel free to contact me, or my Deputy Tara Thronson (Tara.Thronson@yolocounty.org) if you have questions about these advisory roles.

In shared service,

Don Saylor

Local Mental Health Board

This board reviews and evaluates the community’s mental health needs, services, and special problems and reports to the Yolo County Board of Supervisors, the local governing body and the local Mental Health Director.

One position is open beginning immediately and expiring on January 31, 2020.

Commission on Aging & Adult Services

This commission reviews and makes recommendations on specific issues and policy questions regarding county, state and federal legislation and regulations relating to the aged, disabled, or other adults needing the protection of authority and state.  It also serves as the County’s policy liaison to the Area 4 Agency on Aging.

One position is open beginning immediately and expiring on January 31, 2019.

Children’s Alliance of Yolo County

The primary purpose of the Children’s Alliance is to assess and coordinate the community’s efforts to strengthen families; coordinate the community’s efforts to prevent and respond to child abuse and neglect; coordinate, maximize and fill gaps in the existing continuum of prevention and intervention services and resources for children and their families.

The Children’s Alliance is seeking volunteers to join the Fundraising Advisory Committee and the Policy and Advocacy Advisory Committee.

Aviation Advisory Committee (Airport Land Use Committee)

This committee acts and advises in accordance to the Board of Supervisors, reviews and makes policy suggestions on the development programs for the Yolo County Airport and its surroundings, and updates and reviews the Airport Specific Plan.

One position is open beginning immediately and expiring on December 31, 2017.  The incumbent may be reappointed dependent on supervisor determination.

Winters Fire Protection District

The Winters Fire Protection District oversees fire prevention and emergency medical services for nearly 7,000 residents near and in the City of Winters.

One position is open beginning immediately and expiring on December 31, 2017.  The incumbent may be reappointed dependent on supervisor determination.

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06/28/16 Planning Commission Meeting

06/28/16 Planning Commissionl Meeting (PDF): Agenda / Packet

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Friday Update Extra on June 17


Two other reminders:

  • Saturday, June 18 (now today), is the Winters Quilt Show in Downtown. Quilts go up by 9 and down by 3:30. The Downtown never has more color and it is a go to event for our community.
  • The Hispanic Advisory Committee is holding a 10 year celebration and community meeting on Monday, June 20, starting at 7:30 in the City Council Chamber. Come celebrate our Hispanic culture and learn about the activities of the Committee and how you can get more involved.


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Friday Update on June 17 2016


A super busy week, so here are some items:

  • We are still waiting on the final counts for the City Council Election. Yolo County Elections has indicated that they will most likely release the certification of the election on Wednesday, June 22. Stay tuned!
  • This weeks City Council Meeting will have some business items, including modification to our Inclusionary Housing Ordinance, City Engineering Services Contract, Paving Contract for First Street roadway repairs, Adoption of Salary Schedules and a presentation from the Mosquito/Vector Control District.
  • We are down to the final two candidates for Police Chief. I have finished second interviews and will move into calling references. We are really lucky to have two quality candidates with either one being capable of bringing a lot to the position. I hope to have a decision by next week.
  • New Hours at the Library– The library has started its’ summer hours, which now include Fridays for the first time. The summer hours are :Mon & Wed 10am-6pm, Tues & Thurs 12-8pm, Fri & Sat 1-5pm, closed on Sunday. Summer Reading Program has started, all ages are welcome to join, and adults and teens get a nice tote bag when they signup.
  • Saturday is the Rotary Trap Shoot at the Yolo Sportsman with registration beginning at 8:30 am. Entry is $40 and it is a great time!!!

Have a nice weekend.



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06/21/16 City Council Meeting

06/21/16 City Council Meeting (PDF): Agenda / Packet

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Friday Update on June 10 2016


A really short update:

• Today we held the interviews for Winters Police Chief. Six (6) candidates’ were interviewed by two panels. We have narrowed the group to 3 finalists and I have already interviewed one of the candidates tonight.
• The two panels included; a “Community Panel” chaired by Winters High Principal Paul Fawcett and included Marty Mariani, Charley Wallace, Leticia Quirarte and Dagoberto Fierros. The “Staff Panel” was Chaired by Sgt Jeremy Warren and included Shelly Gunby, Art Mendoza, Eric Lucero, Karla Fergeson. Councilmembers Harold Anderson and Wade Cowan split time with both of the panels. Nanci Mills and I were observers of each of the panels.
• Enough cannot be said about the two panels. Both did an amazing job representing various community interests. We are genuinely blessed to have such awesome members of our community willing to spend an entire day on this process. They did a GREAT JOB!!
• A reminder about Woody Fridae’s Retirement Party, Saturday, June 11 at the Palms from 6-9 pm. This is a potluck for hor’s’dourves and is BYOB.

Have a nice weekend.


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Fourth of July in Winters (Sunday, July 3, 2016)

CoWFireworks2016Sunday, July 3, 2016:

Gates open at Dr. Seller’s Field at Winters High School at 6:30 p.m. on Sunday, July 3, 2016 with the fireworks to begin at dusk.

A donation of $1 will be requested for each person over the age of 12 ($5 for a family of 5 or more) entering the field.

No glass, alcohol, animals, or fireworks of ANY kind will be allowed.

Donations may be made to the City of Winters Fireworks Fund at either First Northern Bank or City Hall. For more information please call City Hall at 795-4910.


Department Links:

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-Future Leaders*

-Hispanic Advisory Committee*


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