This document is the City of Turlock Activity Update for the month of March, 2010. 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: April 6, 2010
RE: ACTIVITY UPDATE – MONTH ENDING MARCH 2010
• Worked with Farmers Market Committee in preparation for May 7 opening of Farmers Market downtown.
• Attended the Turlock Downtown Property Owners Association meeting.
• Attended the Chamber of Commerce meetings – ED Committee and Government Relations Committee
• City staff provided a tour and overview of City of Turlock accomplishments and needs for Sarah Moffat, Staff Assistant to Senator Feinstein.
• Continued discussions with parties interested in potential dairy/cheese plant in the Westside Industrial.
• Responded to Google Request for Information regarding the ultra high speed broadband test site.
• Worked with five local businesses to resolve development issues.
• Provided site information to site locators, responded to zoning and development questions.
Housing Program Services
• The Housing Program Services Division has been the recipient of $1.5 million in Neighborhood Stabilization Program funds (NSP). The Program has purchased or is in contract to purchase seven vacant and foreclosed homes throughout the community. The escrow on the first two houses closed on April 1, 2010. The cost estimates, bids and awards for the rehabilitation of these two homes have been done and work will begin the first week of April. The close of the other five escrows will occur during April and the rehabilitation work will begin immediately upon closing. Two families from the First Time Home Buyers list who have been unsuccessful in their offers to purchase homes have expressed an interest in the first two homes that will be finished and ready for them to purchase in approximately 90 to 120 days. The Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) has indicated that additional funds are likely to be available in April and has inquired if Turlock would like additional funds. We have responded that we are interested in taking another one million dollars of NSP funds.
• With regard to the Homeless Prevention and Rapid Rehousing Grant Program, the collaborative grant is expending the full $40,000 each month in providing assistance to individuals and families in need. The need continues to outpace the funding available. One of the Turlock HPRP clients was featured in a front page article in the Sunday, March 28th edition of the Modesto Bee.
• Lastly, and most optimistically, the Housing Program Services division had previously received a CDBG-R grant. As part of the $200,000 grant, the program has an agreement with the Small Business Development Center (part of the Alliance) to assist the Turlock Downtown Association and their incubator program. SBDC has reported their quarter accomplishments that they have served 24 unique clients, have provided 88 hours of business counseling, 4 of the clients invested a total of $48,000 of their own capital in their businesses, SBDC was able to facilitate a new SBA loan of $35,000. In addition, 14 current jobs were retained or saved and three full time and 4.5 part-time jobs have been added. While this grant operates under the national objective of urgent need, the grant also provided assistance to 8 clients that are low and/or moderate income.
• Senate Bill 2 Workshop: On April 27, starting at 5 PM, the City Council and Planning Commission will hold a workshop on Senate Bill 2, the legislation that requires the City provide at least one zoning district in the City with sufficient capacity to develop a year-round homeless shelter under a nondiscretionary permitting process. Staff will provide an overview of the legislation and a summary of the public input received at the February 18 community meeting on this topic.
• SR 165 Public Meeting: On April 28 starting at 5:30 PM, a public meeting will be held for the SR 165 Project Study Report at the Hilmar Grange hall located at 8188 Lander Avenue in Hilmar. Interchange and corridor alternatives will be unveiled to the public for their review and comment. Notices have been included in this month’s utility bills and advertisements are expected to be placed in both local newspapers and on the Turlock Auto Plaza message board. The results of the public meeting will be reported back to each of the five government agencies involved in the project, leading to a recommendation on one or two alternatives that will be carried forward for further study during the environmental review phase of the project.
• 323 Bothun Rd. A residential Structure Fire that was started by electrical and caused an estimated $20,000 dollars in damage to the contents and structure. A side note there were about 90 Marijuana plants growing inside the house for medicinal reasons, P.D. on scene to verify. There were no injuries from this fire.
• 4401 Mirage, a Residential Structure Fire that was started in the kitchen. There was an estimated $3500 dollars in damage to the contents and structure. No injuries.
• 1108 Pioneer, a Residential Structure Fire that started in the dryer. There was an estimated $100.00 dollars in damage to clothes in the dryer. No injuries.
• The graph below is for priority 1 calls, and we are able to meet the goal of a 5 minute response time.
• The Turlock City Fire and Emergency Services personnel have been and will continue to conduct various firefighting training drills in the coming weeks at the recent city acquired vacant commercial buildings located at W. Olive and N. Broadway streets. The training drills will include: Search and Rescue, Rapid Intervention Crew Tactics, Ladder Operations, Firefighting Strategy and Tactics and overhead Ventilation drills.
Water Quality Control Division:
• The new National Pollutants Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) Permit became effective on March 19, 2010.
• Regional Water Quality Control Facility (RWQCF) staff continued the work on creating and amending various electronic data files and sample protocols in order to comply with the new effluent discharge permit.
• Staff continued Fats, Oil and Grease (FOG) pilot study. The RWQCF received several loads of FOG from three different vendors during the month. The FOG samples are analyzed to determine their potential to enhance the ability to create methane gas.
Utility Maintenance Division:
• Started the annual flushing program on March 1st.
• Continued working on the Water Meter/End Point Reprogram/Replacement Project.
• Cleaned approx. 20,000 ft of sewer main.
• Continued working on the new FCC radio license application for the Turlock Airport as required by the FAA.
• Performed a full engine rebuild on an Orion bus.
• Performed annual CHP inspections for all dial a ride and transit buses – all went well.
• Performed the annual inspection on all aerial trucks – all passed.
Parks, Recreation & Public Facilities Division:
Columbia Park Water Feature
• Contractor broke ground on 2/08/10. Work is going smoothly with a completion date of 5/01/2010.
Summerfaire Park Arbor
• Received approval on 3/01/10 to install arbor; work was completed in mid-March.
Summerfaire Basketball Half Court
• Pending approval to proceed with project.
Skate Park Sign
• Sign was vandalized; City staff was able to repair the sign for a large cost savings.
• Approximately 20 employees attended the Traffic Control and Flagging training held by the Risk Management Authority at no cost to the City of Turlock.
Regulatory Affairs Division:
• The project to replace approximately 1,800 streetlights with energy-saving induction lamps is out to bid and is receiving significant interest.
Go Green Week
• The City’s main environmental education program, Go Green Week, will be held the week of April 26th. This year the program has been expanded to include Dutcher Middle School and both high schools.
Downtown PCE Investigation and Remediation
• Initial groundwater investigations in downtown Turlock have indicated that the plume of contamination has migrated down gradient. It appears that the best location for the remediation system is the City Hall employee parking lot. The project is being designed in consultation with the Planning and Engineering Divisions.
• A personalized letter is being sent to almost 12,000 residential water customers giving them a detailed overview of their monthly water use over the past year. The letter demonstrates how their water use will affect their monthly bill once metered billing goes into effect. Further, the City’s IT department has developed a feature on the City’s web site that allows customers to register their utility account and view their monthly and daily water use. Again, the web site shows customers how metered billing will affect their monthly payment.
Clean Water Revolving Fund
• The State Water Board indicates that they are close to awarding the low interest loan for the Upgrade and Expansion of the Water Quality Control Facility. The Harding Drain Bypass is on hold pending approval of a permit from the Central Valley Flood Protection Board. However, such a delay is not critical given the potential for Federal or State grant funding to assist with this project.
Field Operations Division
SIGNIFICANT EVENTS AND TRENDS
• We have received a number of complaints regarding parking issues near several schools. Attention was focused in these areas, particularly around Dennis Earl School. A total of 57 parking tickets were written during the week.
• A Hispanic male suspect was stealing flea and tick medicine when store security tried to detain him. The suspect pulled a knife and fled. Our officers arrived in the area and chased him across the highway to Costco, then back, catching him as he ran into Borders. He refused to answer any questions or give his name. No match has been made on his fingerprints and he is in custody as a John Doe.
• Male suspect, 28 years, was trespassing in a vacant residence. When officers tried to detain him, he ran towards the Town Center. The suspect was carrying a large knife and threatened to kill officers, although he did not brandish the knife. The suspect refused orders to get rid of the knife and was eventually Tased.
• Male suspect, 32 years, was checking up on his ex-wife and found another man there. An argument ensued and the victim drove away. The suspect was not finished and jumped onto the back of the car. The victim stopped several times, but the suspect would not get off, threatening to kill the victim and punching in the back window. The suspect eventually did fall from the car, but continued to chase the victim on foot, until we arrived.
• A male victim received several stab wounds, including a punctured lung. The incident appears to be gang related as the victim stated he associates with Surenos and knew he was in a Nortenos area.
• A suspect ran out of a local business carrying a gold chain worth $900 and jumped into a waiting vehicle. A detective was on his way home and noticed the vehicle, matching the description, however, with only one occupant. The Patrol Unit made a stop at Bradbury and Hwy 99. One suspect was taken into custody; our investigation continues in order to identify the second suspect. At this time, the property has not been recovered.
• Burglaries still remain high, with 33 this week, although four suspects were arrested for burglary this week.
• Auto thefts were up from 10 last week to 16 this week.
• Friday, 3/12/10, we began a program of downtown patrol from 9 am to 1 pm, partnering with CSUS Police. We are planning to run it for a couple of months, budget permitting, and see what the results are.
Street Crimes Unit
• The unit conducted eight probation/parole searches during the week. A total of eight arrests were made, including two felonies and six misdemeanors.
Emotionally Disturbed Person
• We received a call from a subject stating satanic worshipers were trying to kill him, his cell phone was being used to track him, and he had armed himself with two knives. He was contacted in a local hotel lobby and convinced to put his knives down. He did attempt to resist when we detained him, but there were no injuries. He was taken to Doctor’s Behavioral Health Center for evaluation.