RNCC Meeting Minutes, March 10, 2014

Thank you to Richmore Village and Metropolitan Square and May Valley NCs for tonight’s refreshments.

  The meeting was called to order at 7:01 pm by President Don Woodrow and he will be passing out the 2014 information for the NCs binders.

2.  MSP approval of the Minutes from February 10, 2014 (after corrections)

3.  Representatives from the following (21) neighborhoods introduced themselves and some gave reports: Belding/Woods, Carriage Hills North, Eastshore, Fairmede/Hilltop, Greenbriar, Iron Triangle, Laurel Park, Marina Bay, May Valley, N&E, Panhandle Annex, Parchester Village, Park Plaza, Pt Richmond, Pullman, Quail Hill, Richmond Annex, Richmond Heights, Richmore Village and Metro Sq, Santa Fe, and Shields/Reid NC.

4.  Announcements from RNCC PIO: Garland Ellis announced the Volunteer Service Award and the Historic Preservation Award are looking for nominations. The City is still putting on programs to help people get registered for healthcare. NIAD is having a fundraiser at liff Bar in Emeryville.

5. City Department Heads/City Official Reports:

     Public Works: Yader Bermudez passed out the paving list for the next 3 weeks and told us about the work on the Kennedy Swim Center that will close it for a year. They have rewired 150 light boxes on the Parkway and the rest will come to City Council soon. They have the Greenway Unity Park out for bid and the Marina restroom will go before City Council in April. The Shields/Reid Park is out for bid right now.

    Engineering Services: Tawfic Halaby was unavailable and no one came in his place.

    City Manager’s Office/Community Coordinator: Rochelle Monk passed out the new Good Neighbor Policy with all the updated information needed for 2014. She also told us that in it’s first year, the ESC had 1500 volunteers and 62 organizations and some of the events they attended was the MLK Day of Service, the Kaboom build a playground in a day and the neighborhood clean ups. They have met with the the Volunteer Center of the East Bay and they will be putting on training here in the City. All NCs still can have a newsletter printed and mailed by the City, four times a year and they will translate your newsletter into Spanish.

Mayor’s office: Nicole Valentine spoke about the Youth Summit on 4/19/14 and Meet the Mayor will continue on the first Friday of the month. She told us that she would like our support at City Council to have Sisters in Solidarity to continue after Mayor McLaughlin leaves office.

Police Department: Chief Magnus wa unavailable but Captain Sappal filled in. He spoke about crime stats and that the last homicide in Richmond happened in October, 2013. They are working on human trafficking as the prostitutes are the victims and have been sending “Dear John” letters to car owners whose license plates have been spotted talking to prostitutes. They are rolling out a new app for all smart phones that will make it easier to submit dumping, potholes and other things that are illegal in the City. They just had a Foster Care Youth Conference and invited many of the foster children in Richmond to attend and to learn about how to stay safe.

    Code Enforcement: Tim Higares spoke about the hiring freeze and that he is down to 5 code enforcement officers and one is going out on maternity leave. He is still waiting to hear if the ADA parking position is frozen or not. He does have someone for the position but is waiting to hear. They have 4 properties on the demolition list and the next to go, and hopefully next week is the one on Leake Way in Parchester Village. There is another one on Maricopa, near the HS. The next property problem they have is the zombie properties. These are properties that the owner has walked away from but the bank does not want to foreclose on. There is about 120 on the books right now and the City has met with the tax collector and the tax assessor to see if there is a way to purchase these homes and get them sold. Code Enforcement is no longer over the tow contracts but Tim is helping Sgt Rood in the Regulatory Dept to get new tow contracts.

    Environmental Manager: Lynne Scarpa talked to us about aphids and how to get rid of them using other bugs, neem oil, insecticidal soaps and sticky traps. Lady beetles (lady bugs) won’t stick around if you do not have the plants that like to eat.

    Planning Department: Lena Velasco returned from maternity leave and her baby girl is 4 months old. She told us about the LED sign ordinance that was going to City Council soon and the EIR for the Chevron upgrade will be happening soon. She also talked about a grant application the City has tried for that has to do with climate change and there is also a transit project they will be trying to get funds to do.

Fire Department:Terry Harris was unavailable but Deputy Marshall Robin Poindexter filled in. She told us about changing the batteries in your smoke detector or using the one with 5 year batteries. She also told us about kitchen fires as these are the ones that happen the most. She told us to use baking soda on grease fires, not water and that having a fire extinguisher is the best for all fires.

6. Presentations: 1) President Don Woodrow spoke about what the executive board worked on during the retreat and where we have come from and where we would like to go. We have brought a few neighborhoods back to the RNCC, updated the by-laws and got a website up and running. Our focus this year is to find out about the issues that NCs have and that they have not had good luck getting them resolved. Instead of telling us what they did at their last meeting, they can talk to us regarding an issue they have and what they have done to resolve it. We will then use the power of many neighborhoods to support them and get the issue resolved. We also are going to investigate what is happening in the City regarding the ONS, Zoning, Planning and the General Plan. We will be working to get a memorial bench in Nichol Park near the Richmore Village gate for Pam Wimberly.

7. Old Business: None

8.  New Business: They was some suggestion of getting John Gioia to speak at our next meeting regarding Dr Hospital and the bond measure. The NUSA conference begins May 21st and ends May 24th and since it is close, we can have more than 2 members going. Think about going.

9.  Adjournment: President Don Woodrow adjourned the meeting at 9:16 pm.

Respectfully submitted by,
Stanly Anderson Recording Secretary