Documenter: Dani Huerta

Here’s what you need to know:

  • A resolution for the annexation of an overlay district for the river bottom area into the city of Reedley landscaping and lighting maintenance was approved. There were 69 no votes, 78 yes votes, and one duplicate.

  • The consultant services agreement with Mintier Harnish for update to the city’s municipal code specific to housing and land use was approved. A change to this agreement was that Spanish translation for outreach is now a requirement, resulting in an additional $25 to the total budget.

  • The resolution establishing a pension and other post employment benefits funding policy was approved. This will add  $348,329 to next year’s budget due to a 25% increase in the policy. 

Council Members

  • Mary L. Fast, Mayor 

  • Robert Beck, Mayor Pro Tern

  • Anita Betancourt, Council Member 

  • Ray Soleno, Council Member

  • Matthew Tuttle, Council Member 

  • Nicole R. Zieba, City Manager

The Scene

The Reedley City Council meeting was streamed via Zoom at 7 p.m. on November 9, 2021. Audio from past meetings can be found here. The meeting began with an invocation,  the pledge of allegiance and roll call.


  • Agenda Approval

    • Opened with public comment

  • Consider adopting a resolution for the annexation of an overlay district for the river bottom area into the city of Reedley landscaping and lighting maintenance in District 1 (Resolution No. 2021-116)

    • Unsealing of the ballots were not shown on Zoom, but they invited members of the public that attended in-person to view the process in the mailing room

    • Marilou Morales, City Engineer, presented

    • People in the affected zone received ballots, an informational guide, and a postcard notifying them of this meeting

    • Received 146 submitted ballots of the 299 sent with one person waiting for the end of the hearing to submit their ballot

    • Annual maintenance cost is $48.40 per equivalent benefit unit

      • If approved, Reedley would collect annual $14,471.60 beginning in 2022-23 fiscal year

    • A Council Member said hopefully the people approve it because it would improve the area.

    • Another Council Member asked if they normally send out these pamphlets in other areas. Morales said that they did not but in the future they will.

    • This item was tabled while the votes were being counted in the mail room

    • 69 no, 78 yes, 1 duplicate. Passed, Resolution adopted

  • Consent agenda was approved

  • Approve the City Manager to sign a consultant services agreement with Mintier Harnish for update to the city’s municipal code specific to housing and land use

    • Rob Terry, Community Development Director

    • Fully funded by state grants $310,000

      • SB2 fund would have expired in June but was extended because of COVID

      • Both grants have been extended to December 31, 2023

    • Development is late November or early December 2021 through August 2023

    • Spanish translation services for outreach has changed from proposed to a requirement 

      • Changed $288,340 to $288,365, an increase of $25

    • A Council member asked why they need Spanish translation as outreach and if this is a process they need outreach for.

      • Terry responded that outreach includes talking to and educating the public on any changes that may happen. Spanish translation as a requirement allows for as much of the public to be educated on this

    • The same Council Member asked if other cities are doing the same thing?

      • Terry said he had asked Council Of Governments (COG) what they’re doing but Reedley is a year ahead of other agencies.

    • There is a few thousand extra within the grant

    • Approved

  • Establish a pension and other post employment benefits funding policy (Resolution No. 2021-097)

    • Follows nationally recognized best policies. This policy memorializes what they’re already doing for financial sustainability for the long term. This will impact the city for decades.

    • Declares the current pension and retiree medical plan cost is a budgetary priority. It is a consistent process of paying unfunded obligations over time.

    • Received status of current pension plan with CalPERS in February 2021 

      • Currently charged 7% interest on pension liability

    • As of June 30, 2020 the total unfunded liability for all six city pension plans and the retiree healthcare plan is $23,293,332 total

    • Began pre-funding retiree medical plan in 2015

      • Return is over 12.3% as of June 2021

      • Funded status is 4%

    • $304,000 in addition to normal payment CalPERS paid in August. The benefits  will be seen next year

    • Takes this year’s budget and memorializes it into a budget finding polity for future budget years, to add 25%

      • Already doing this for retiree medical plan

      • Council has the power to pause this

    • Next year’s budget adds an additional $348,329 if this is approved

      • City Manager Zieba thinks this is a good thing

    • Approved

  • The  2020-21 fiscal year annual development impact fee report was not discussed

  • Report by council members on city related activities and request for future agenda items

    • Council Member Soleno wished everyone a nice thanksgiving

    • Council Member Betancourt 

      • Thanked the City Manager for sharing how the Faith House is doing

    • Council Member Tuttle

      • Last week he spoke at the Fresno Regional Workforce Development Board. partnered with Reedley College. Provides underprivileged people free wildfire training for those who qualify for the program. He helps with this at his gym.

    • Council Member Beck 

      • He had a five cities meeting yesterday, not much accomplished. He wished everyone a happy Thanksgiving.

    • Mayor Fast

      • Attended a Council of Governments meeting on October 28. The Sustainable Communities Strategies picked scenario B. This affects Fresno and Clovis but not Reedley.

      • State Route 41 is now a two lane road and set to become a 4 lane road. They still need to come up with the rest of funding. This will hopefully be complete in three to four years

      • The Fresno County Rural Transit Authority received a transportation planning grant to conduct a feasibility study to develop a monorail with an extension into Reedley.

  • Updates by City Manager and Staff

    • COVID

      • 1,4466 Covid cases in Fresno County, one of the higher of the counties of growth rate

      • Death rate has decreased, 2,479 deaths since the beginning of COVID. 144 deaths this past month

      • 80% of those in hospital are unvaccinated, almost 100% of deaths are people who are unvaccinated

    • Attended the state of the college, enrollment is down for Reedley college and state center community college, probably because of COVID. They are testing all staff and students who are unvaccinated. Opened new tiger pantry and closet

    • A jet came in at the airport but cannot leave because the runway is too short. They can start a fully certified aircraft mechanic program if they can remove a jet engine and put it back on an air frame. Probably the first to work on electric planes.

    • No more meetings in November, one meeting in December

    • The Senate passed the Infrastructure & Jobs Act that focuses on roads, bridges, highway, broadband, and infrastructure. Reedley will get some funding. 

    • State passed Housing legislation SB-9 & SB-10 which eliminated single family zoning. If you live in a single family zone an apartment complex can be built next to you. There was a written response from League of California Cities Director Carolyne Coleman “lashing back” at the Attorney General saying cities haven’t done enough for necessary housing. 

    • There is an unveiling of the Veteran’s mural tomorrow

    • Reed Avenue sidewalk project starting Monday and will be completed in 3-4 weeks

      • Construction at Buttonwillow was closed because the trench failed. It was closed Friday and will be open next Tuesday

    • Welcome Lori Avini, her first meeting

Public Comment

  • Andrew, who lives on Eymann Avenue, expressed concerns with speeding on the street where he lives. He requests speed bumps and does not want a stop sign. In the past he has asked for a speed radar trailer and it was out for a week. 

  • (For Item 1) Karen Anderson, resident of the River Bottom area, asked what was the agreement between the city and the developer of the community regarding the center divide. She said 17% of her property tax bill is not from her property and does not want it to rise. She asked if there are other areas that have common areas cared for by the city and do those neighborhoods get a tax increase. She asked why the common area where she lives singled out to pay higher property tax.

    • City Manager Zieba responded that newer parts of town have the LMD District. There are about 200. Community developers must follow bare minimum requirements. The developer can improve the neighborhoods but it is attributed to the neighbors. The district where Anderson lives does not have a consumer price index (CPI) increase. This means people living in those areas are paying the same price as they were in the 80’s even though the cost of providing service has increased. This only covers landscaping and lighting, not police and fire services. The city went through the process with her district in the past but they voted it down because they did not want a price increase. This process is happening again so they could explain the process better. 

  • (For Item 1) Patty Heinrichs asked if non-return ballots are considered no-votes. She hopes there will be some trees left if this resolution is voted down and asked which trees they will be taking down. She also said the city should do a better job training the maintenance workers because she sees landscapers on their cell phones often.

    • Zieba said ballots that do not come back are not considered. They would not move forward in taking out trees until consulting the public. The plan is to fix broken red bricks and fix curbing and irrigation. If voted no, they will leave some trees and maybe remove some lights. In response to workers being on their cellphones, she said the people they hire for these jobs are usually part-timers and do not receive as much training.

The meeting was adjourned to a closed session. Next city council meeting will be held in December and will be the last meeting of 2021.

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