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1997-03-20 Town of Truckee TOWN COUNCIL REGULAR MEETING MINUTES March 20, 1997, 6:00 P.M. Truckee Donner Public Utility District Board Room 11570 Donner Pass Road, Truckee, CA CALL TO ORDER - Mayor Drake called the meeting to order at 6:00 p.m. ROLL CALL PRESENT: Council Members Carpenter, Florian, McCormack, Susman, and Mayor Drake ALSO PRESENT: Stephen L. Wrighl, Town Manager; Dennis Crabb, Town Attorney; and Vicki Soderquist, Deputy Town Clerk PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE was led by Dan Landon. PUBLIC COMMENT - None PRESENTATIONS 5.1 Proclamation Recognizing the 1996-97 Tahoe Truckee High School Women's Varsity Ski Team. 5.2 Proclamation Recognizing thc 1996-97 Tahoe Truckee High School Men's Varsity Ski Team. 5.3 Proclamation Recognizing the 1996-97 Tahoe Truckee High School Women's Junior Varsity Ski Team. 5.4 Proclamation Recognizing the 1996-97 Tahoe Truckee High School Men's Junior Varsity Ski Team. Motion by Couucilmember McCormack, Seconded by Councilmember Susman, passed unanimously, to approve Items 5.1 through 5.4. Mayor Drake presented the proclamations to representatives of the Ski Teams, Head Coach Olof Carmel, and Assistant Coach Christina Case. 5.5 Transportation Development Plan Update. Recommendation: Council receive public input for staff inclusion in Transportation Development Plan. JoAnn Owens, Administrative Services Officer, Nevada County Transportation Commission, Project Manager for the Five Year Update Plan, gave a brief review of the update process. She informed the public that the unmet needs public hearing would be held by the Nevada County Transportation Commission on April 16, 1997 at the Joseph Center. Bill McCuliogh, Consultant, Nelson/Nygaard Consulting Associates, stated they were analyzing transit services in Eastern Nevada County to develop a Transit Development Plan. The draft Existing Conditions/Needs Assessment report was being presented for public comment. The next phase of the study would develop service options. Barbara Smith, Tahoe/Donner Resident, Chair of Committee of Tahoe/Donner Board of Directors, stated they were trying to establish transportation within Tahoe/Donner. Mercy Galvin, representing Truckee Pines Headstart Preschool, stated the transit system had worked to accommodate their program with field trips, services for parents/families, and staff support. She requested that they consider a lower fee for low income children. Couneilmember Susman noted the increased ridership over the last seven months, but also noted there had been decreased service to seniors. He hoped to see a Glenshire route and expansion oftbe private/public partnerships. Carol Hester, TNTtTMA, stated the North Lake Tahoe Resort Association was also doing a long term transportation implementation plan which would have some connectivity to the Truckee system. There was also a North Tahoe Airport Study underway. Don Huber, Bus Driver, informed the public that the High Sierra Senior van had been reactivated and was utilized for after hours and Reno trips. He felt the service to the seniors had been reduced. He recommended better training for drivers regarding local destinations. He also requested that the radio obtained through fund raising be returned to the seniors. Hans Osterman, requested that senior service be extended in the evenings and on weekends. He noted that the trolleys were not easily accessible to the seniors and that some of the trolley stops were too far away from the stores for the seniors to walk. Tom Parker, ATM, stated their ridership had increased and 90% of the ridership was seniors. Councilmember Susman questioned if air quality funding was being utilized to augment transportation. Mr. McCullogh replied that some air quality funding was utilized and it would be addressed the in the Service Plan, Financing Plan, and Capital Plan. Cheryl Fox, ATM Dispatcher, stated since they moved their office they had increased their accuracy and scheduling. She also felt service should be expanded for later in the evenings and on weekends. Councilmember McCormack stated it was difficult to design a system to meet the needs of the entire community. He felt Dial-A-Ride service on the weekends would be a desirable next step along with extended hours during the week. He questioned what could be done in the future to attract visitors to public transportation. Mr. McCullogh replied that 23% of the ridership was tourists and 35% of those had a vehicle available to them. The new service had been in place only seven months but the ridership had tippled. Mayor Drake commended Tom Covey, Public Works Director, and ATM for the improvements within the transportation system. Mr. Wright informed the Council that a letter had been received from Mr. Jim Smith in support of the transit system (a copy is on file). Town Council Minutes March 20, 1997 Regular Page 2 6. CONSENT CALENDAR Motion by Councilmember Carpenter, Seconded by Councilmember Florian, passed unanimously, to approve the Consent Calendar with Item 6.6 pulled. 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 6.5 6.6 Minutes of March 6, 1997 - Regular Meeting. Recommendation: Council approve. February 1997 Treasurer's Report. Recommendation: Council approve. Proclamation of the Existence of a Local Emergency by the Town Council of the Town of Truckee. Recommendation: Council approve the Proclamation declaring the continued existence of a local emergency. Minutes of February 20, 1997 - Correction. Recommendation: Council amend the minutes as follows: "At the suggestion of the Town Attorney, a correction to the minutes was made to clarify that a final decision could not be made in a workshop format. Rather, the action taken by the Council was to support a consolidation study as a priority issue and direct that it be agendized for further discussion at a future meeting". Mayor Drake stated his statement had been in error and apologized to the Council for the misstatement. He also apologized if the statement led to any confusion or distress by any observers. Notice of Completion - West River Street. Recommendation: Council authorize the Town Engineer and the Town Clerk to file a Notice of Completion for the West River Street repair. Nevada County Transportation Commission's 1997/98 Overall Work Program. Recommendation: Council review overall Work Program of the NCTC and adopt Resolution 97-05 approving the project list. Pulled from the Consent Calender. Dan Landon, Executive Director, Nevada County Transportation Commission, informed the Council that he was there to receive input on the draft list of projects. The RFP for the Truckee Mousehole on SR 89 would go out within the week to develop a project for improving pedestrian safety and enhance traffic flow. Mayor Drake questioned if the main project was the Deerfield Drive/Cold Stream Connector Study. Mr. Landon stated that had been added at the request of Town staff to help determine the most appropriate alignment. Councilmember Carpenter requested an update on the Hwy. 267 by-pass. Mr. Landon replied that construction was scheduled to begin in 1998. It had been Nevada County's number one priority for over a decade. He had approached District 3 to bring the project in early, but due to the number of projects for District 3 they did not have sufficient staffto move the project ahead. The project was funded for full right-of-way and construction. Motion by Councilmember McCormack, Seconded by Councilmember Florian, passed unanimously, to approve Item 6.6. COUNCIL IMMEDIATE (9-12 MONTH) PRIORITIES 7.1 LAFCo Proposed Consolidation Study - Public Discussion. Recommendation: Council provide direction as desired. Mayor Drake informed the public that the item had been placed on the agenda because it was anticipated that LAFCo would have taken action at their meeting on the item. It was his understanding that LAFCo had continued the item. Council was prepared to accept any public comments at the present time. Town Council Minutes March 20, 1997 Regular Page 3 Councilmember McCormack stated that LAFCo had continued the item to a meeting on April 17th, 9:00 a.m., in Truckee. Jerry Gilmore, Boardmember, Truckee Sanitary District Board, submitted a letter to Council (copy on file) stating the sphere of influence report should be separate from the consolidation issue. They also did not feel it was the proper time, but at the appropriate time it would be reasonable to consider a comprehensive evaluation of Truckee's local governance and services provided. The Town was a new service provider which needed more time to deal with many issues including road maintenance, snow removal, flood damage, railroad merger, general plan, and public safety. Ron Hemig, Board President, Truckee Donner Public Utility District, submitted a letter to Council (copy on file) reiterating comments made by TSD. He felt if the Council decision was to postpone the consolidation and replace it with a joint study it would result in a quality work product and smoother implementation of any recommendations. Mike Ter~villiger, Truckee Fire Protection District, submitted a letter to Council (copy on file) which recommended: 1) that consolidation be removed from the sphere of influence process; 2) management meetings between the districts and Town should be expanded to include joint action when feasible; 3) research that concluded that multiple local governmental agencies working together was the most efficient and effective structure should be widely distributed and dialogue encouraged; 4) at the appropriate time, the evaluation of local services and government be jointly initiated by the special districts and Town and kept free of outside influence and bias; and, any action, discussion, or information gathering on any oftbe above items, including but not limited to a manager's report, occur at a properly noticed meeting held in Truckee. He stated he was pleased that LAFCo would be holding their next meeting in Truckee. Peter Soderquist, General Manager, Truckee Tahoe Airpor~ District, submitted a letter to the Council (copy on file) supporting comments made by the previous districts. Breeze Cross, Former Councilmember, stated there were a lot of things that the Town needed to do with limited resources and stafftime. He felt the Town was being forced by LAFCo into entering into a highly controversial issue like consolidation when there were no willing partners. He suggested that Council be consistent with the positions taken in the past, which was absent a very strong clear message from the townspeople or having a willing partner, to take a neutral position. Mayor Drake stated the Council had also received a letter from the Recreation and Parks District (copy on file) stating their unanimous position that the Recreation and Parks District should not consolidated into the Town at the present time. The Board felt the Town was too new and that consolidation should be considered at a later date when the Town had solved some of its current problems. They also felt the Town should not commit any funds to LAFCo for the study. Chuck Holt, Resident, felt the time was appropriate to do a study. Pat Sutton, Boardmember, Tahoe Donner Public Utilities District, and LAFCo Boardmember, stated past efforts for incorporation included leaving the special districts unchanged. She felt the voters believed that and, if action were taken, they would feel betrayed. She also felt the Town and special districts should all be moving in the same direction. Harry Smith, Resident, felt that there could be possible savings with consolidation and that a study was demanded by the situation. Town Council Minutes March20,1997Regular Page 4 Councilmember Carpenter stated the last meeting had been uncomfortable and he was pleased that the item had been agendized for public comment. He felt the Town had a number of priorities and issues and he was not looking to take on another big issue. But, Council did not make decisions without information and he felt cooperation in a study would allow them to have more information. It was not a step towards consolidation, but if a study said that there was enough money to fix everything, then maybe the Council should change their priorities. Councilmember McCormack stated that various districts had acknowledged that a comprehensive study had merit, but it was not the right time. He felt there should be a meeting of district representatives to establish some criteria for determining when was the right time to consider reorganization in some form. He agreed that current service being provided by the districts was exemplary, but that did not suggest that there could not be efficiencies and elimination of redundant functions. Some activities within the Town were incomplete, some were hard to complete, but he felt every activity was being addressed. He did not feel a study was a waste of money when the multipliers were significant. Councilmember Florian stated he was in support of a study and questioned if there were other funding sources other than the Town. Mr. Wright stated that was an unanswered question and something that the Town and/or LAFCo could explore. Councilmember Florian felt another soume of income should be found other than the Town. He also felt a workshop should be held with representatives from the Town, Special Districts, and the public to digest the information received and determine whether or not the study should be done and the timing of such a study if so determined. Councilmember McCormack informed Council that LAFCo was interested in pursuing other funding opportunities. Councilmember Susman stated Council had not suggested consolidation, but upon LAFCo's request, to entertain the idea of consolidation. He noted there was a lot of valuable information in the preliminary incorporation reports, but they also suggested that things change from year to year and should be updated. He felt Council needed more information and that he would be remiss as an elected official to not address the issue if there could be a possible benefit. The motivation of the Council was not to injure in any way the community or taxpayers. The timing for a study could be now, but it did not necessarily indicate that consolidation was in the near future or on the horizon. Ms. Sutton wanted to make it clear that from the district's meeting on Tuesday, there seemed to be a trend to be amenable to funding part of a study ($70,000-$80,000) as long as it included an evaluation of the Town as well as the special districts. Councilmember McCormack stated he had not had the opportunity to read the letters submitted but was pleased with the indication of willingness by the districts to fund a study. He felt it would result in a more broad and comprehensive study. Mr. Gilmore stated that at their meeting on Tuesday, the one common theme seemed to be that consolidation or some consolidation was inevitable and would probably have benefits. But, there was also a feeling of genuine concern. People have had pride for many years in the special districts and they wanted to make sure that if there was a study that it was not a consolidation study or geared toward a specific outcome, but an overall governance study. A comment had been made by a representative from the Tahoe Forest Hospital in that there may be a savings, but they needed to Town Council Minutes March 20, 1997 Regular Page 5 decide if they were going to save a nickel to lose something special. If it was best for the community it should change, but if it was over a nickel it was not right. It also had to be done at the right time. He felt there was a lot of pride in the districts and the services performed. It should be done right and be done together. Mr. Hemig did not feel that a unilateral decision could be made on the issue. If the Town wanted to make a decision about a study the districts should be brought in to make it a collaborative decision. LAFCo should not be telling the community what to do, the community should be affirmative and tell LAFCo what they wanted for local government. The districts should be included in determining a time line and what the subject matter should be. Mayor Drake stated he was pleased with the comments made from the special districts. He agreed that the service being provided was exemplary and noted that all he ever requested was that the issue be looked at. LAFCo was only doing their job, i.e. looking a efficiency of government. He felt the community could report back that they agreed to look at the issue and obtain information on the best way to mn the community. Council recessed at 7:43 p.m. and reconvened at 7:52 p.m. 7.2 Glenshire Bridge Update. Recommendation: Council accept the report. Jon Lander, Town Engineer, presented Council with a progress chart for the replacement project. The project had developed procedural difficulties regarding environmental concerns including the potential for bat habitat at the old bridge. Due to the environmental concerns it had delayed the permit request, railroad work, and finalizing right-of-way negotiations. The design was progressing and it was estimated that the plans, specs and estimate would be ready the first week of April. The construction maintenance agreement with the railroad was being drafted. The railroad had assured staff that they would draft a letter to the CPUC by the second week of April in support of the construction maintenance agreement. An appraiser had been hired for the right-of-way process. It was anticipated that Council would advertise the project at their second meeting in May. Councilmember Susman questioned if the cultural resoumes report incurred additional funding. Mr. Lander replied that Council had amended the original contract several months ago and the work was within that amount. Councilmember Susman questioned if the bats were a seasonal problem. Mr. Lander stated that Caltrans had approved a request to allow the protocol to be done in the early part of the summer. Councilmember McCormack questioned the impacts of the delays on the construction project. Mr. Lander stated because the project was not currently advertised and it would not be awarded by May 1st, it was likely that it would not be completed far enough in the fall for traffic. It was anticipated that Council would take action on the CEQA portion of the environmental work along with review of colors for the bridge at their next meeting. STAFF REPORTS 8.1 Grant Application Regarding the "Mill Site". Recommendation: Council approve the submission of the grant application to the California Center for Land Recycling. Tony Lashbrook, Director of Community Development, stated the grant was sponsored by the CA Center for Land Recycling and funded by an endowment from the Irwin Foundation. The project Town CouncilMinutes March 20, 1997 Regular Page 6 would be a detailed development scheme and proforma which would address railroad operational issues, site mmediation, and other issues. Staff felt it would be a tool to actively seek development interest. The grant would be for $20,000 and would also utilize the expertise of staff at the CA Center for Land Recycling. Staff was working on getting the support of Union Pacific for the grant. Councilmember Carpenter questioned what type of competition the Town would face. Mr. Lashbrook stated it was the flint year for the grant program. The proposed project hit on a lot of the issues the grant program supported, i.e. it was a growing community, it was not an old industrial site in a large urban area, likelihood that development would go somewhere else, Truckee was a visible place with a rural mountain environment by Lake Tahoe, and it was something totally different than most of the other applications. Councilmember Susman stated he had attended the initial meeting with CA Center for Land Recycling and found their reaction exciting. He felt the grant would afford the opportunity to dispel myths regarding the area for future development and possibly move forward with Union Pacific regarding the site. Mr. Lashbrook stated the California Center for Land Recycling was excited about the Town's position regarding the Downtown Plan, community support, and commitment already identified. Both the staff and Board that oversaw the non-profit organization had significant private sector access to developers which would be a benefit to Truckee. Mr. Wright felt if the Town had not been established and gone through the General Plan and Development Code process and efforts related to the Mill Site and associated issues, the organization would not have approached the Town with such an opportunity. It was a sign of things to come in the future that were directly related to the actions being taken by the Council at the present time. Motion by Counciimember McCormack, Seconded by Councilmember Carpenter, to approve the submission of a grant application to the California Center for Land Recycling. Councilmember Florian questioned if the application of the grant would help to speed up the process of the Mill Site with Union Pacific. Mr. Lashbrook responded that it would definitely help. Because there had not been an agreement with the railroad regarding operational issues, the Town had backed off design and tried to attract development with a lot of land use. The grant would provide the ability to design a development and cost it out. The Town could then be more selective about a proposed project, he felt it was a key part. Mr. Crabb stated it was an opportunity for Truckee to obtain recognition on a nationwide level. If the project was successful it would be a model for the entire country. Vote on Motion: approved unanimously. MATTERS OF INTEREST TO COUNCIL MEMBERS 9.1 Boca Sierra Estates. Councilmember Susman stated Council had received a project summary for the 789 acres north of Town (PC2). 9.2 1996 Accomplishments. Mayor Drake stated the Town Manager had prepared a list of Council accomplishments for 1996 which had been submitted to the Sierra Sun. Town Council Minutes March 20, 1997 Regular Page 7 10. CLOSED SESSION regarding litigation against Nevada County pursuant to Government Code Section 54956.9. Closed Session was not held. 11. ADJOURNMENT - Mayor Drake adjourned the meeting at 8:30 p.m. in memory of Angelo Christopher Besio and Virginia Logan. Respectfully submitted, STEPHEN L. WRIGHT, Town Manager Vicki C. Soderquist, Ct~ Deputy Town Clerk Town Council Minutes March20,1997 Regular Page 8