City Hall

The Civic Minute: what’s happening at Citrus Heights City Hall

Public hearing. $10,000 sponsorship. Allocation of $1 million in grant funds. Employee compensation. Street striping contract. Those are some of the topics on the agenda for the Citrus Heights City Council’s Nov. 8 meeting.

Here’s a brief summary of what’s included in the 131-page agenda packet, followed by vote highlights from the most recent council meeting:

Agenda Items of Note:

  • Street Striping/Marking Contract. Councilmembers will consider approving a multi-year contract with Centerline Striping Company, Inc. for “as-needed” striping and marking maintenance services. Pricing for services was not listed in the agenda packet. An existing contract with Centerline expired earlier this year. If approved, the new contract will extend through 2025.
  • Payrates. The City Council will consider a staff recommendation to adopt an amended payrate schedule, which lists minimum and maximum hourly and salary rates for all city employees. Several minor changes are proposed, which are listed as having “no additional fiscal impact.” The city’s new position of Assistant Chief of Police is included on the payrate schedule, with salary listed between $139,000-$179,000. Several changes are also proposed to comply with California’s minimum wage law, which increases from $11 per hour to $12 per hour, beginning next year. (See proposed payrate list for all positions)
  • $10k Sponsorship. The City Council will consider a $10,000 sponsorship request from the Citrus Heights Chamber of Commerce. Funds are proposed to go to the Chamber from the city’s $150,000 Economic Development Support Fund, and the city would receive an extensive list of sponsorship benefits in return. The city has approved Chamber sponsorships for the same amount in prior years.
  • Public Hearing: A public hearing will be held prior to the City Council voting on final allocation of federal 2019 Community Development Block Grant funds (CDBG). According to a staff report, new funding is estimated to be around $600,000 in 2019, but will be coupled with rollover funds and loan repayments from prior years, bringing the CDBG expected budget for 2019 to $1.145 million. The bulk of funding, $905,000, is proposed to go towards public infrastructure projects and housing preservation programs. $130,000 is allocated towards planning and administration. About $110,000 is proposed to be allocated to eight nonprofits in the area, including $16,000 to Meals on Wheels and $15,000 to Sunrise Christian Food Ministry. $16,000 is also proposed to go towards funding the Citrus Heights Homeless Navigator program.
  • Compensation Policy. The City Council will consider a staff recommendation to revise the city’s Compensation Policy Guidelines for employees. Proposed revisions include removal of references regarding compensation needing to be based on performance, as well as the elimination of a list of specific local and regional agencies to be used for comparison in establishing compensation packages. Under the new guidelines, the Chief of Police will also be entitled to 12 months severance pay under normal circumstances, rather than the current eight months pay. A staff report says the change is proposed due to the “typical length of time required to complete the process for appointment to a public safety position.” The report also says some of the changes regarding compensation had already been approved in prior council actions, but are being updated to be reflected in the current policy. (See draft policy, with changes)

Additionally, procedural “second readings” of ordinances regarding smoking and rental inspections will be voted on as part of the council’s consent items. The actual reading of the ordinance is typically waived, and the council already voted individually on each ordinance last month in unanimously passing the city’s new smoking ordinance and voting 4-1 on the new Rental Housing Inspection Program. Ordinances typically go into effect 30 days after a second reading.

The City Council meeting will convene at 7 p.m. on Nov. 8, 2018, at 6360 Fountain Square Drive. The full agenda packet can be viewed by clicking here.

HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE OCT 25TH COUNCIL MEETING:

Present: Mayor Steve Miller, Vice Mayor Jeannie Bruins, Bret Daniels, Albert Fox, Jeff Slowey
Meeting length: 2 hrs. 52 min.

QUOTABLE: “I just don’t want my name associated when my buddies come up and say ‘hey, you know, [I] can’t smoke a cigar on the golf course,’ when it’s bothering nobody,” Councilman Jeff Slowey, commenting on why he would vote “no” on a new smoking ordinance, unless language banning smoking at golf courses was struck from the ordinance.

  • Video interviews (Approved, 5-0). Video interviews are now a requirement for each applicant to the city’s Planning Commission and Construction Board of Appeals. Interviews will be no more than 10 minutes in length and will be made available to the council and general public prior to any individual being appointed.
  • Holiday Referral program. A presentation was made regarding the Police Department’s launch of its annual program to benefit in-need families. See full story: CHPD seeks donations, referrals to help in-need families during holidays
  • Smoking regulations (Approved, 5-0). The City Council voted to repeal and replace the city’s existing ordinance regulating smoking, in order to bring the code into conformance with state law and expand areas where smoking will be banned. Councilmembers agreed to strike wording that would have banned smoking at golf and disc golf courses. See full story: Citrus Heights just expanded its smoking ban. Here’s what you should know
  • Eminent domain (Approved, 5-0). No one spoke during a limited public hearing held prior to the City Council voting to move forward with eminent domain proceedings in order to acquire a section of private property to allow construction of new street/sidewalk improvements and underground utilities, as part of Phase II of the Auburn Boulevard Complete Streets project. The property is an old gas station at 8244 Auburn Blvd. An acquisition price was proposed for $24,200.
  • Rental Inspections (Approved, 4-1). The City Council held a public hearing prior to voting 4-1 in favor of a proposed new ordinance and fee schedule that will authorize and fund mandatory inspections of the city’s roughly 15,000 rental homes and apartments. See more: What you need to know about Citrus Heights’ new rental inspection program