Sebastopol City Council meeting discusses emergency operations plan, Committee for Unhoused, Morris Street bike lanes and more

By Zoe Strickland, Managing Editor, SoCoNews, March 15, 2022

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The Sebastopol City Council meets at 6 p.m. , March 15. Agenda items include a public hearing item related to the city’s emergency operations center, a public hearing item adding language to the city’s municipal code about “police acquisition and use of government body specific equipment,” as well as regular agenda items about bike lane modifications to Morris Street, discussion and consideration of recommendations from Sebastopol’s Committee for Unhoused and more. The council will also be receiving presentations about the upcoming Sebastopol Documentary Film Festival, the process of expanding the city’s business improvement district and a presentation from the climate action committee.

Watch the meeting here.

Here are some of the items on Tuesday’s meeting agenda:

Public Hearing: Emergency operations plan

Stemming from the September 2021 approval of the city’s emergency operations plan, the director of emergency services is coming forward with a list of recommendations and budget modifications for the council to consider that would better equip the city’s emergency operations center and alternate emergency operations center.

Additionally, city staff is requesting some amendments to the section of the city’s emergency management ordinance that aligns it better with Sebastopol’s emergency operations plan.

To learn more about this item, go here.

Bike lanes on Morris Street

Responding to complaints about vehicles parked on Morris Street that encroach into the bike lane, city staff will be discussing potential changes to the bike lanes on Morris Street. Specifically, city staff is recommending that changes only be made to the east side of the street.

City staff studied four options pertaining to possible bike lane striping changes:

  • Remove the “outermost-curbside” bike lane line and repaint bicycle pavement marking to delineate a narrower bike lane resulting in an 8-foot parking lane, 4-foot bike lane, and 10-foot travel lane.
  • Remove the “outermost-curbside” bike lane line and do not restripe the line, resulting in a combined 12-foot bike lane and parking lane.
  • Remove both bike lanes and paint new bicycle lanes one foot further into the travel lane resulting in an 8-foot parking lane, 5-foot bike lane and a 9-foot travel lane.
  • Maintain the existing striping with 7-foot parking lane, 5-foot bike lane and 10-foot travel lane.

According to the council staff report, the city’s recently passed parking ordinance means that “RV parking on Morris Street will no longer be a constant conflict with bicyclists, motorists and pedestrians,” and, as such, staff is recommending that the council go with the fourth option.

To read more about this item, go here.

Discussion from the Committee for the Unhoused

As part of a monthly report to the city council, Sebastopol’s Ad Hoc Committee for the Unhoused is planning to discuss the following items during Tuesday night’s meeting, according to the council agenda item: continuing support for the Horizon Shine Village that opened last month as an RV parking pilot program that’s being run by Sonoma Applied Village Services (SAVS); identification of grant writing providers; extending the existence of the ad hoc committee; support for a warming/cooling center; renewing the city’s contract with West County Community Services (WCCS) to provide services to unhoused people; renewal of the WCCS contract for services to manage Park Village; continued exploration of mental health resources; continuation of sanitation efforts as needed; identifying a staff lead to oversee issues related to unhoused people and to interface with service providers, the council and others.

Discussion on two items — appointing a council liaison to service providers and creating a new ad hoc to assist in the search for a future relocation site for Horizon Shine Village — are being recommended to be deferred to the council’s April 19 meeting.

To read more about this item, go here.

The full agenda for Tuesday evening’s meeting can be found here.

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