Sentinel staff report–
The Citrus Heights City Council voted 4-1 on Thursday in favor of moving forward with plans for a new $500,000 mandatory inspection program for the city’s 15,000 rental homes and apartments, despite the lone objection of Councilman Bret Daniels who said the program was unnecessary and too expensive. A new ordinance must still be drafted and voted on by the council before inspections can begin.
“The whole premise is to make sure that we have housing units that are safe for occupancy and that they are safe for the families and the occupants who live there,” said Councilman Al Fox, in a comment just prior to casting his vote in favor of the inspection program. “That then protects the property owners to make sure that the values of those properties stay up.”
Fox also noted several properties he’d seen in Citrus Heights with siding “falling off the wall” and said he supported the idea of proactive rental inspections as a way to prevent situations like the 2016 “Ghost Ship” fire in Oakland that killed 36 people, and another incident where a balcony collapsed in Berkeley and killed six people in 2015.
Citrus Heights currently has a state-mandated program in place to respond to complaints from tenants about the condition of rental properties, but the new program seeks to be proactive rather than reactive — resulting in regular interior and exterior inspections of rental properties in an inspection cycle of three years…
By Stacey Hanks–
Despite smoky skies from Northern California wildfires and temperatures in the 90s, Citrus Heights neighborhood groups along with police officers and city officials came out Tuesday evening to celebrate National Night Out.
Held every year on the first Tuesday of August, the nationwide event is designed to help bring members of the community and their local law enforcement agencies together to help foster better relationships and prevent crime.
While some neighborhoods have been organizing National Night Out gatherings for years, of the 18 events Citrus Heights police expected to be held that evening, on Sperry Drive the occasion was being celebrated for the first time in recent memory.
Pop-up shade tents decorated with favorite sports teams were pitched on the front lawn, offering a place out of the sun for visitors as they feasted next to tables laden with summer potluck fare. Cooks kept the smoking grills hard at work feeding neighbors and officers alike as they stopped by…
Proposed mandatory rental inspections. Public hearings. Grant funding increase. $416,000 contract. Infrastructure project. Those are some of the topics on schedule for the Citrus Heights City Council’s Aug. 9 meeting.
Here’s a brief summary of what’s included in the 190-page agenda packet, followed by vote highlights from the most recent council meeting:
Agenda Items of Note:
-Mariposa Safe Routes To School, phase 4. The city council will consider approving a $416,462 contract with Bennett Engineering to provide pre-construction services and public outreach for the final phase of a major infrastructure project, known as the Mariposa Avenue Safe Routes to School project. According to a staff report, Phase 4 of the grant-funded project will cost $2.6 million and will complete the bicycle and pedestrian network on a roughly 1,500-foot section of Mariposa Avenue, from Northeast Circle to Madison Avenue. The project includes installation of sidewalks, curbs and gutters, bike lanes, street lighting, and traffic signal upgrades at Madison Avenue and Mariposa.
-Public Hearing: Assessment Districts. Roughly 100 pages of the agenda packet are devoted to three agenda items, all related to routine public hearings required for annual updates to various landscape and lighting assessment districts in the city. Assessment districts are areas with special fees tacked on to property taxes for certain parcels in the city to cover specific maintenance of areas associated with those parcels. Several areas have experienced shortfalls in recent years and future changes have been discussed to address those shortfalls…
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