MINUTES

REGULAR MEETING

 

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 11, 2006

 

ROBERT LIVERMORE COMMUNITY CENTER

4444 EAST AVENUE, LIVERMORE, CALIFORNIA

7:00 P.M.

CRESTA BLANCA BALLROOM

 

 

 

DIRECTORS PRESENT:              Director Faltings, Director Furst, Director Goodman, Director Turner and President Kamena (5)

 

DIRECTORS ABSENT:                                  None (0)

 

STAFF MEMBERS PRESENT:            Chiye Azuma, Tim Barry, Jim Brandenburg, Jim Carlson, Lora Cohen, Barbara Kraybill, Michael Kyle, Gretchen Sommers, Brian Tibbetts,

 

 

1.         CALL TO ORDER – ROLL CALL – PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

Meeting was called to order at 7:02 p.m. by Vice President Turner. Roll was taken and all Directors were present except President Kamena

 

2.          PUBLIC FORUM

Vice President Turner asked for public comment on any item not on the agenda. No public comment was received.        

 

President Kamena arrived at 7:03 p.m.

 

3.          CONSENT AGENDA:

3.1   BOARD  MINUTES

            3.1.1   Meeting of September 27, 2006.

3.2   COMMUNICATIONS:  None.

3.3   General Manager’s Monthly Report (#60/3).

3.4   Payroll and Claims.

 

On a motion by Director Faltings, seconded by Director Furst , approved the consent agenda, passing 5-0.

 

4.            CONSENT AGENDA:  RESOLUTIONS:  None.

 

5.         BIDS AND PUBLIC HEARINGS:  None.

 

6.          OLD BUSINESS:  None.

            6.1 FRIENDSHIP CENTER RELOCATION STATUS

                  General Manager Barry summarized the staff report. He reviewed the four options remaining for staff to investigate as possible relocation sites for the Friendship Center: R.E. Merritt Building on Trevarno Road, City-owned Pacific Avenue property, leasing of a commercial site, and former private school site on Vasco Road near Tesla.

 

Director Furst asked if the private school site has a ball field on it now. General Manager Barry answered that it does not. He stated that there used to be a BMX track and there is a leach field now. There is, however, room for a ball field.

 

Director Turner asked if staff wishes to eliminate any of the four options at this point. General Manager Barry responded that staff does not. Director Turner asked if the school site is on the market at this time. Mr. Barry responded that no, the District is being offered the site at this time. Mr. Turner expressed concern about a deal going through in the meantime. Mr. Barry stated that Mr. Deiss of ATI will complete his report on this site in the next couple of weeks.

 

President Kamena asked how seriously staff is pursuing the private school site. Mr. Barry said he would have to speak to the seller about an asking price, and he would have to discuss financing possibilities with the Board. President Kamena said that the General Manager could talk to the seller without Board approval. Mr. Barry said he would need approval if the District must go into debt to purchase the facility.

 

Director Goodman suggested that staff tell the seller that LARPD is, indeed, serious and would like to ask for a gentlemen’s agreement, or first right of refusal, in order to hold the property until the District  can make a decision.

 

Director Faltings suggested we investigate a COP in order to assure the sellers that we are serious.

 

Director Furst asked if staff is still on the 60-day timeline requested by the Board. Mr. Barry responded that, yes, staff is staying on the timeline.

 

President Kamena reopened public forum in order to allow a member of the public to speak, as that person was mistakenly led to believe that the item she wished to discuss would be on the agenda this evening.

 

1)  Suzie Gazzuolo, Livermore, is a senior at Livermore High School. She stated that Livermore High School and Granada High School are holding a community event to support the Friendship Center Friday, Feb. 9, 2007. The event will feature activities put on for the seniors by the high school students and there will be a black and white ball the following evening. The students wish to raise funds for the seniors, and to unite the city more, bringing positive feedback to the community. Ms. Gazzuolo is asking LAPD to donate the Cresta Blanca ballroom for an evening. Both schools and school superintendent are aware of this event.

 

President Kamena stated that the letter she sent to the Board will be on the agenda of the next Board meeting.

 

7.          NEW BUSINESS: 

            7.1   RECLASSIFICATION OF AN EMPLOYEE

                    President Kamena stated that the Board will consider the General Manager’s recommendation to reclassify Park Supervisor James Brandenburg to the position of Senior Park Supervisor.  General Manager Barry presented his staff report recommending Mr. Brandenburg for the position. His report listed numerous reasons for reclassifying Mr. Brandenburg. 

 

                    Director Faltings stated that the Personnel Committee reviewed this issue and is recommending the reclassification to the Board as a whole.

 

 

                    Mr. Turner asked about the salary considerations, if there would be an increase. He stated that it is clear to him that Mr. Brandenburg is perfect for the position and this is a good move for the District.

 

                    Director Goodman stated that he supports the reclassification of Mr. Brandenburg, also. He noted that Mr. Brandenburg has had to bear the brunt of the difficulties caused by budget shortfalls.

 

                    Director Faltings stated that she knows that Mr. Brandenburg is an irrigation expert. She asked when the raise in salary would go into effect. Mr. Barry stated that the position would start at the beginning of the next pay period, October 16, 2006. Mr. Brandenburg will start the duties of the Senior Park Supervisor and continue to perform the Park Supervisor duties as well, until a new Park Supervisor is hired. Director Faltings stated she is pleased to see that the park irrigation budget got more funding  at the last meeting. She said that she thinks Mr. Brandenburg is the perfect person to fill this position.

 

On a motion by Director Turner, seconded by Director Faltings, recommended the reclassification of Mr. Brandenburg from the position of Park Supervisor to Senior Park Supervisor, passing 5-0.

 

             7.2    QUARTERLY CAPITAL PROJECTS STATUS REPORT

                    President Kamena stated that the Board will review the Quarterly Capital Projects Status Report and Budget, and provide comment and direction to staff. He stated that, as a result of less home construction occurring in Livermore, the District will receive less AB1600, or park in lieu, fees than expected. Therefore, the District will have to make adjustments in its capital project planning.

 

                    Mr. Barry reviewed the staff report which included seven measures that staff  is recommending as possibilities for compensating for the lack of AB1600 funding. The recommendations included: 1) delay recovering administrative costs for the Community Center; 2) do not transfer 2005/2006 “force labor’ from the Capital Fund to Operations; 3) review transfer of 2006/2007 “force labor” from the Capital Fund to Operation; 4) Friendship Center relocation may be delayed; 5) delay moving Denton House to Sycamore Grove until spring 2007; 6) reduced cost of Master Plan; and 7) use part of the temporary advance of funds from County to assist capital cash flow. Mr. Barry noted that this report is slightly different than that reviewed by the Budget Committee earlier in the week.

 

Director Furst asked about the Denton House and about the donor, Ms. Williams-Courtright, being contacted about a possible delay in moving the structure to Sycamore Grove Park. Director Turner asked why we need to delay it when the donor is paying for moving the house. Mr. Barry responded that once the house is placed in a public park, it is more open to vandalism. Mr. Turner asked about how we can delay the move of the Friendship Center, as time is of the essence. He asked if we had received any word from the Charter School on whether or not the program can stay longer at the school site. President Kamena stated that we do have some indication, though not yet in writing, that the Friendship Center move can be delayed.

 

President Kamena stated he would feel embarrassed to ask Ms. Williams-Courtright to delay her project because of our cash flow issues.  He said he feels we should accept the house when Ms. Williams-Courtright is prepared to give it to us. He commended the General Manager for having a Plan B, but feels confident our projects will not get done before the District has no money. Mr. Barry stated he’d like to clarify that we would want to wait on the renovation and remodeling of the Denton house, not so much the move.  President Kamena directed the General Manager to do what he feels it is best to do.

 

Director Goodman said he appreciates the General Manager giving the Board the information on the capital project funding situation, even though the Board’s approval is not necessary to act on the staff recommendations. He asked that the General Manager keep the Board apprised. Mr. Barry said that staff will take another look at this issue at the mid-year budget review.  Mr. Barry presented a Capital Projects sheet to the Board. He said that staff is prepared to review the report, and to respond to any questions the Board may have.

 

Director Goodman asked about the Robertson Park Equestrian Arena cover and the contract period. Mr. Barry responded that the contract has been signed and that the project is expected to be completed in February 2007.

 

8.          ORAL REPORTS:

             8.1   Director Faltings reported on her attendance at the September California Special Districts Association Conference, and the sessions in which she participated. She distributed a summation to the other Directors.

 

9.            COMMITTEE REPORTS

Director Faltings reported that she and Director Furst, who make up the Personnel Committee, attended a Personnel Commission meeting recently at which the Committee members and Commissioners discussed the Personnel Commissions role. Ms. Faltings noted that the Commissioners are all human resources experts who donate their time. She stated that the District appreciates their participation.

 

Director Furst asked about the EBRPD/LARPD Liaison meeting that occurred in September and asked if there is more information on the Brushy Peak Trail. General Manager Barry responded that EBRPD is pursuing the environmental clearance on the land in order to put in a trail. This project would involve a trail on LARPD’s section as well, and Mr. Barry said that he told EBRPD that LARPD would be happy to participate in this.

 

President Kamena stated that he would like clarification on the feral cat issue that was discussed at the October 2 Facilities Committee meeting. He said that the meeting minutes seemed to indicate inconsistencies, with LARPD not wanting to eradicate the cats, yet not wishing to permit  feeding of them. Director Furst responded that the revised policy is a work in progress that the General Manager is still reviewing. He noted that there will be discussion about not feeding any animals, not just feral cats. Director Furst added that the Facilities Committee did discuss trapping of the animals but no final recommendation is being made yet. General Manager Barry said the staff intent is to have the public enjoy its parks, and putting the rules and regulations together is part of the attempt to address that. Mr. Kamena stated that feral animals are a risk to humans and to other animals. He would like to see some discretion in the policy that would allow for efforts to rescue animals. He stated he feels we can have prohibitions but still give well meaning people the opportunity to proceed with their cause of rescuing the animals.

 

Director Faltings stated she is aware of animal organizations in Livermore, such as Tri-Valley Animal Rescue, that attempt to rescue the animals and find homes for them. She stated that she shares Mr. Kamena’s concern that we have some flexibility in dealing with this issue. She said she looks forward to seeing the draft rules and regulations. She asked if there had been public complaints about feral cats. Mr. Kamena responded that yes, there have been complaints.

 

Director Goodman asked that we take care that the animals be brought to organizations that do not euthanize the animals.

 

President Kamena spoke about the EBRPD/LARPD Liaison meeting at which staff spoke about our agreement with EBRPD, whereby about 1/3 of LARPD tax revenue is shifted to EBRPD. Mr. Kamena stated he was disappointed in the letter we got from EBRPD in response to our formal request to change the agreement. He asked staff to research the assertions made in EBRPD’s letter to verify their accuracy. President Kamena said he wished to publicly ask Ayn Wieskamp,  an EBRPD Director, and former LARPD Director, to take a stand and support LARPD. Director Furst reiterated Mr. Kamena’s request of Ayn Weiskamp to support LARPD in its request to EBRPD.

 

10.            MATTERS INITIATED/ANNOUNCEMENTS BY THE DIRECTORS

1)   Director Goodman said that he would like to have a Board retreat, open to the public, at which Directors can discuss issues in more detail, which they are unable to do in the Board meeting format.

 

2)      Director Goodman referred to an item contained in a committee report regarding citizen Carol Fiore’s request for accessible playgrounds in Livermore. Mr. Goodman said he would like to strongly encourage the District to move forward with this. Mr. Kamena said he has asked staff to identify a park that might be considered as an accessible playground.

 

3)      Director Goodman asked about a report on the Sycamore trees at Sycamore Grove. General Manager Barry stated that staff is awaiting a report from the consultants working on the project now.

 

4)      Director Goodman said he would like to acknowledge that the Board has received a number of letters from the public requesting more softball fields, especially as relates to the Bothwell Park project. He stated he would like the District to discuss the possibility of a bond issue for a sports park, as this is an issue that is not going to go away. He would like this to be seriously considered.

 

5)      Director Faltings spoke about an organization called Shane’s Inspiration that funded designs to build playgrounds that are accessible to all children, able-bodied, disabled, etc. She recommended that staff contact this group for ideas. She would like to see LARPD have accessible playgrounds.

 

6)      Director Furst inquired if a Scottish Games report will be on the October 25 Board agenda. He also asked for a Camp Shelly report, on costs, etc.

 

7)      President Kamena stated that Carol Fiore brought the issue of accessible playgrounds to the District as she is in the process of applying for a grant for an accessible park. Mr. Kamena stated that Vista Meadows is an accessible park that the District recently installed. He took his 22-month old daughter there and she loves the park. He was very pleased that able-bodied children love the park, too.

 

8)      President Kamena announced that the Halloween Downtown Trick or Treat event will be held on October 26 at 5:00 in downtown Livermore. He said that it is a great event and he encourages people to attend.

 

9)      President Kamena announced that the first meeting of the recently formed Ad Hoc College Tours Committee will be October 16 at 6:00 p.m. at the Robert Livermore Community Center. Members of the public are welcome to attend.

 

11.            MATTERS INITIATED/ANNOUNCEMENTS BY THE GENERAL MANAGER

1) General Manger Barry announced that LARPD has a Halloween event at the Barn this year.

 

2) General Manager Barry announced that he will be at a training conference on special district finance the next two days.

 

Meeting recessed at 8:05 p.m.

 

Meeting convened to Executive Session at 8:16 p.m.

 

12.            EXECUTIVE SESSION

12.1 CONFERENCE WITH REAL PROPERTY NEGOTIATIORS

                    Pursuant to Section 54956.8 of the Government Code

                    Property: Robert Livermore Community Center, 4444 East Avenue, 

Livermore, CA 94550

                    Agency Negotiator: District Staff and/or Legal Counsel

                    Negotiating Parties: Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory

                    Under Negotiation: License agreement for use of rooms

 

13.             RECONVENE TO OPEN SESSION

            Meeting reconvened to Regular Session at 8:29 p.m.

 

14.            REPORT ON ACTION TAKEN IN EXECUTIVE SESSION

            No action to report.

 

15.            ADJOURNMENT

The meeting adjourned at 8:30 p.m.

 

 

 

APPROVED,

                                                           

                                                                                    _______________________________

                                                                                    President, Board of Directors

ATTEST:

 

__________________________

General Manager and ex-officio

Clerk to the Board of Director