This document is the City of Turlock Activity Update for the week of March 14 – 20, 2009. The activity update is meant to keep the Turlock City Council and all areas of the government organization on the same page. The community may also view the complete document here at TurlockCityNews.com as it was sent out by the City of Turlock.
TO: Mayor and Council
FROM: Executive Team
DATE: March 21, 2009
RE: ACTIVITY UPDATE – WEEK OF MARCH 14-20, 2009
· Economic Development/Redevelopment Manager attended Downtown Property Owner’s Association Board meeting.
Housing Program Services:
· Staff attended a pre-development meeting to discuss a potential affordable housing project with the American-Assyrian Club.
· Housing received notice that the City of Turlock will be receiving an additional $200,913 in CDBG funds through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.
· Housing will be monitored by HUD the week of March 23, 2009.
· The Highway 165 Policy Advisory Committee met on Tuesday evening to review and approve the purpose and need statement for the Project Study Report. The meeting was held at Turlock City Hall. No major issues were raised by the Committee. Individual comments were solicited and an additional week was given to the members to send comments to the consultant team. The purpose and need statement must be approved by the City Council as well as the governing boards of the other four jurisdictions participating in the study. A tentative date for the first public meeting for the project was set for April 22. The meeting will be held at the Hilmar Elementary School. This date is tentative and is subject to change. More information will follow. Notices will be sent to property owners in the affected areas. The City of Turlock staff will assist by posting notices on free advertising services such as the Modesto Bee events calendar and Channel 2 cable, as well as posting notices at public places within the City.
· Board members of the Assyrian American Civic Club and Chris Alley from the Central Valley Coalition for Affordable Housing met with City staff to review three conceptual alternatives for the development of an affordable housing project at 2700 N. Golden State. The Civic Club members are working with the Coalition to construct approximately 73-105 affordable units for multi-family housing, senior housing, or a combination of the two. The site is currently zoned Heavy Commercial. Before the project can obtain its full entitlements, a General Plan Amendment and Rezone to either Medium or High-Density Residential will be needed. In order to secure full entitlements that would allow the Coalition to apply for State tax credits, a Planned Development or Minor Discretionary Permit would have to be obtained. Staff provided options for processing the application. The project is located immediately adjacent to a single family neighborhood. In addition to the orientation of the project, noise from highway and railroad noise, sewer and storm drain capacity, traffic safety and operations, and emergency access were discussed as significant issues that would have to be addressed. The property is located in the Northwest Triangle Specific Plan area; therefore, plan area fees, including an air quality mitigation fee, as well as the City’s capital facility fees would be applicable to the project. The applicant was provided a fee estimate form to apply for a preliminary estimate of fees associated with the project.
· Dan Blank met with the predevelopment team to discuss reusing the Mervyn’s building for a bowling alley. The bowling alley would have a 50’s style diner, arcade and snack bar. A Conditional Use Permit (CUP) would be required. Some of the items staff discussed included upgrading the fire sprinkler system, installing a kitchen hood system for the restaurant, installing a grease interceptor, possible repairs to the sidewalk along Minnesota and the pedestrian ramps at the driveways. A code analysis is required because of a change in use from retail use to assembly use. Mr. Blank is unsure whether they will be serving beer and wine but staff provided information regarding obtaining an ABC license and the Public Convenience and Necessity Process. Staff also provided Mr. Blank with the information to obtain a development fee estimate.
· City staff met with Rob Christianson (Mid Valley Engineering), Jamie Flynn (Campus Crest Development), and Shawn and Dennis Fitzpatrick (local developers), to discuss development of the vacant properties at 900 & 950 West Monte Vista Ave. Campus Crest is proposing a 192 unit, 504 beds, “dormitory” for University students, on approximately a 10-acre portion of the site, and a commercial center on approximately 2 acres, along the Monte Vista frontage. The residential density (14.95 units/acre), requires a General Plan Amendment and Rezoning of one of the parcels from HDR to MDR in order to accommodate the proposal. Furthermore, the inclusion of a commercial center, as well as gating the residential component require approval of a Planned Development in order to ensure orderly development of the entire project area, addressing development concerns including access to the site and infrastructure requirements. An application for this project was submitted to staff immediately following the predevelopment meeting. The site plan included with the application showed that the commercial component would consist of two typically-designed retail buildings with parking lots. However, an email was received later the same day showing a “revised” commercial plan that included a car wash. Staff has previously informed the applicant, and re-iterated after receiving this revision, that General Plan policies promote “land uses in the area surrounding CSUS compatible with the needs and character of an academic campus,” and therefore, Planning staff would not support a car wash at this location.
Capital Improvement Projects
Projects in Construction
· Golden State and Tuolumne Road Signal, Contract Amount $1,786,903.95: Teichert and their subcontractors are on site completing the landscaping and striping.
Traffic & Transit
· Staff applied for a Conditional Use Permit for the Del’s Lane and Hawkeye Avenue site. We have 120 days to meet all of the criteria to get grant approval by the FTA.
Building & Safety
· Among the 30 building permits applied for this week:
ü 3006-3124 W Christoffersen Pkwy – New medical office building for “Sutter Gould Medical.”
ü Villagio Subdivision – Four new single family dwellings.
· A total of 24 building permits were issued this week.
Public Facilities Maintenance Division:
· Turlock Regional Sports Complex – On Friday, March 27th, at 10:30 a.m. the Mayor will be hosting a dedication and unveiling of the new ‘Abe Rojas Field’ sign. It will be held at the west end softball field at the complex. Everyone is invited to come out and join the Mayor, Abe Rojas, family, and friends at this special dedication.
· Sunnyview Park – A 3” main irrigation line broke last weekend and water was shut down from Saturday through Wednesday causing stress and dry spots to the turf area in the Dog Park. Staff has made the repairs and the water was running by Thursday, March 19th.
· Ferreira Ranch Park – A booster pump went down at the park last week causing stress and dryness to the turf. The Electrical Mechanical staff had repairs completed Thursday, March 19th.
· Due to the closing of Crane Elementary School, Recreation staff is working with TUSD to transfer the ASES After School Program to Brown Elementary School. This site was selected because 65% of the students attending are on free and reduced lunch.
· The Recreation Division received a $1,200 grant from the Arrowhead Club. Monies will be used to support the “Sticks for Kids” Golf program.
· A series of digital photography workshops for adults has been added to the summer schedule in conjunction with a photo exhibition in the City Gallery during July/August.
· Art Event at Covenant Village on Saturday, March 21: The event will showcase art and performances by students at the Walnut Elementary Education Center. This is a first time collaboration with Covenant Village, which should provide good exposure for their facility and a fun opportunity for their residents.
Regulatory Affairs Division:
· Purchasing Dept. – Mobile Phones: 56 surplus Nextel phones were sold back to Nextel on the Sprint Nextel Buy Back program. The City received a credit for $1,655.00 to be applied to its next billing statement. Approximately, $1,000 of the credit will be applied to General Fund departments. There are additional phones in the process of being sold back to the Nextel’s Buy Back program. Other phones with no value will be donated to a non-profit organization.
It is anticipated that future statements will reflect additional savings because rate plans were audited and modified as appropriate. Further, 13 phones were canceled.
· Drinking Water: As required by State Law, we have conducted an investigation into the recent total coliform exceedance in the City’s drinking water system. It appears that the failure of the casing in one of the wells is most likely the culprit. The City is responding to the State Department of Public Health’s “Citation for Compliance.” More importantly, however, staff is working quickly to determine whether the well can be rehabilitated to be placed back in service before the peak demand for water occurs in June and July. Further, an additional well is high in nitrates and staff is looking at ways of modifying the well to draw water from below the high nitrate interval. Again, time is of the essence.
· Fire personnel responded to a total of 100 emergency calls for the past week.
· Division Chief Lohman had a meeting this past week with the local Amateur Radio club to determine their level of involvement if the City were to have a disaster or large scale event in the city.
· Staff met with the department Haz Mat team to discuss recent events, training issues, and as well as develop a communications plan for emergency responses.
· Staff is working on developing an “Incident Action Plan” for the Every 15 Minutes Program to be held at Turlock High School on April 8, 2009.
· All Engine Companies are receiving didactic and manipulative Air Ambulance training from Medi-Flight of Modesto. The training includes: Identifying and the proper establishment of a safe helicopter landing zone, air to ground communications, proper hand signals, patient loading and demobilizing a landing zone.
Calls for Service 2278
Criminal Investigations 273
Sworn Personnel- 86
Deployed 82 (6 Officers: Field Training)
Non-Sworn Personnel 46
Field Operations Division:
Significant Events and Trends
· A DUI/Driver License checkpoint was held from 8:30 P.M. until 1:30 A.M. on Friday. During that time, 449 vehicles came through the checkpoint with 413 drivers screened. Four arrests for DUI were made as was one arrest for marijuana possession. Several other citations were issued.
Street Crimes Team (CAGE)
· While searching a residence in the 400 block of Florence for one subject who had violated the terms of his parole, CAGE team members found the subject’s wife jumping over the back fence of the yard because she too had violated the terms of her parole and was wanted by her parole agent.
· The Crime Prevention Unit conducted one of many Neighborhood Watch meetings in the 900 block of Dancer for a well established long term group. This group of residents posts their own Neighborhood Watch newsletter and has truly captured the spirit of this successful police/community partnership. A Council Member’s attendance was appreciated by staff and the residents.
· The Volunteers in Policing (VIPS) graduated Class #7 at the War Memorial, the first class utilizing a phased approach to training wherein volunteers with specific interests are allowed to advance through only the training specific to their assignment. The VIPS now number more than 30 members.
· Four suspects, one adult and three juveniles, were all arrested for a string of residential burglaries. The first call came in as two subjects running from a home in the 4000 block of Tapestry and getting into a burgundy four door car. Officers arrived on scene and discovered a burglary had just occurred. About fifteen minutes later, a call came in from Sunny Oak regarding subjects trying to get into a house and a red car involved. Officers responded but were unable to locate the suspects. About five minutes later, a call of a burglary at a residence in the 200 block of Sunday was received. The homeowner ran into the backyard as the suspects kicked in her front door. They were unaware she was home. Officers arrived and saw the red car parked out front. The driver is taken into custody and the others in the house run out and jump fences. The officers had converged on the house and a perimeter and yard search was conducted locating the remaining three suspects. This arrest was followed-up with the arrest of four additional suspects at a later date after a brief chase. These suspects were linked to several residential burglaries
Special Operations Division
· Patrol Officers arrested four subjects in connection with several residential burglaries that had just occurred. Patrol developed information that the suspects had access to a firearm and requested Investigators assist with obtaining a search warrant for the vehicle the suspects had been apprehended in. Investigators obtained and served the warrant and located a handgun that had been concealed in the engine compartment of the suspect vehicle.
· Later in the week, Patrol requested assistance from investigators regarding subjects that had been taken into custody following a vehicle pursuit, where a gun had been recovered. Further investigation revealed that the gun, along with other items recovered by Patrol, had been stolen from Modesto. Our investigators coordinated with Modesto PD and assisted them with the interviews of the suspects.