Sebastopol City Council Preview

By Zoë Strickland, Managing Editor, SoCoNews, September 7, 2021

city council preview

The Sebastopol City Council is tackling a wide range of issues at its meeting on Sept. 7, from reviewing its Emergency Operations Plan to receiving presentations from its Zero Waste Committee to talking about the potential for a trail connecting Petaluma and Sebastopol.

The meeting is being held over Zoom, with the regular meeting beginning at 6 p.m. and a brief special meeting beginning at 5:30. For more information, go here.

Prior to the regular meeting starting, the council will meet for a special city council meeting to interview one person to serve as Sebastopol’s representative on the Sonoma County Library Commission. The council will discuss the appointment for the commission during its regular meeting Tuesday night.

The consent calendar

The council is scheduled to vote on the following consent calendar items:

  • Approving the minutes for the council meetings on July 28 and Aug. 3
  • Ratification of approval of Amendment No. 23 with GHD Inc. for preparation of a local safety plan
  • Bodega Avenue Bike Lanes and Rehabilitation Project (approval of funding agreement for the use of Fiscal Year 2019-20 CDBG Funds for the design of the Bodega Avenue Accessibility Project; approval of modification 1 to the master agreement with Wood Rodgers, Inc. for the design of the Bodega Avenue corridor reconstruction; adoption of a resolution authorizing a budget amendment to the capital improvement plan budget)
  • Adoption of the city of Sebastopol standard details for street improvements
  • Approval of budget amendment for Fiscal Year 2020-21 Community Benefit Funds to the Sebastopol Chamber of Commerce for use toward the September 2021 Apple Blossom Parade
  • Approval of budget amendment for purchase of a public works vehicle
  • Approval of extension of planning and building permits in response to COVID-19 for an additional year
  • Approval of deferring vacancy on the Planning Commission until the council has acted on changes to the Planning Commission Ordinance or until December 2021
  • Approval of Americorp Trail Matching Grant Agreement with Sonoma County Ag + Open Space
  • Approval of change order No. 1 for repaving local streets
  • Approval of amendment No. 1 to contract with Stone Creek Environmental Consulting for Stormwater Reporting

Regular Calendar Agenda Items

The main part of the meeting will be devoted primarily to these topics:

Petaluma-Sebastopol Regional Trail: In 2017-18, the city helped support an effort to put together a feasibility study on possible connections between Sebastopol and Petaluma. The proposal outlined for the connection is a 13-mile paved trail connecting the two cities. The trail could be used for bicycling, walking, jogging and other recreational opportunities.

Though the project is in large part unfunded, per the council agenda item, Regional Parks is presenting an overview of the project to the city council.

Emergency Operations Plan

The council will be reviewing and discussing the city’s draft Emergency operations Plan for possible adoption at the council’s next meeting.

Per the council agenda, “ Although the city has not had the need to activate fully the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) in recent past events (wildfires, floods, pandemic), the city felt it was necessary to review and revise the EOP to ensure it meets current law and best practices for our community.”

“The revised draft Emergency Operations Plan (EOP) is designed to identify the city’s emergency planning, organization, policies, procedures, and response to extraordinary emergencies associated with natural disasters, technological incidents, and national security emergencies. The plan also addresses integration and coordination with other governmental levels when required. The EOP establishes a framework for emergency management planning and response to prevent emergency situations; reduce vulnerability during disasters; establish capabilities to protect residents from effects of crisis; respond effectively and efficiently to actual emergencies; and provide for rapid recovery from any emergency or disaster affecting the local jurisdiction,” the agenda continues.

Water Tower Sales

Following up from a previous council meeting, the city’s public works department will be providing a report to the council about the operation, sales history and volume of water sold from the potable water tour at the city’s Corporation Yard.

Water tower haulers primarily deliver water to customers for household use. However, as the drought worsens, it was requested that an informational presentation be given to the council about the water hauling process.

“The city council approved resolution number 6364-2021 on July 28, 2021, approving that the City of Sebastopol enter Stage 2 Mandatory Compliance- Water Alert as found in Municipal Code 13.06.070. This is to achieve an overall system-wide water use reduction goal of 25%. The statement “system-wide” refers to all water used from the Sebastopol municipal water system which includes individuals and large consumers alike,” the council agenda reads. “Based on the adoption of this resolution, the water hauler account holders were notified by mail and posted notice that the 25% reductions applied to water tower sales and conservation reductions are in effect. Many of the water hauler account holders received two water conservation letters as the city’s top water consumers were notified of their status and provided conservation information as well. Prior to sending the conservation letters to the water tower haulers, an effort was made to reach out to the drivers to survey their needs and uses regarding conservation measures.”

The council will also be discussing and considering its response to the Sonoma County Grand Jury report,  ad hoc and standing committees and the city’s sponsorship policy.

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