What you need to know:
- The Council voted to approve the change in language for the sewer and water utility rates.
- The Council was presented with a proposed budget of $55,084,218 for FY 2022-23.
- The Council voted to approve a three service agreement with Kings Canyon Unified School District for a School Resource Officer, to start in the 2022/2023 school year.
Reedley City Council Board Members
- Mary L. Fast, Mayor
- Robert Beck, Mayor Pro Tem
- Ray Soleno, Councilmember
- Anita Bentacourt, Councilmember
- Matthew Tuttle, Councilmember
The Reedley City Council meeting was called to order at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, May 10, 2022 by Mayor Mary Fast. The meeting consisted of four of the five council members. Those present included Mayor Mary Fast, and Councilmembers Matthew Tuttle, Anita Bentacourt and Ray Soleno. Councilmember Robert Beck had an excused absence. Other City staff present included City Manager Nicole Zieba, Community Services Director Sarah Reid, City Engineer Marilu Morales, Assistant City Manager Paul Melikian, Public Works Director Russ Robertson, and City Clerk Ruthie Greenwood. Due to the mask mandate for indoor public spaces and workplaces being lifted, the Council members did not wear masks.
Madison Mitchel, the City of Reedley Recreation Supervisor said “Kids to Parks Day empowers kids and encourages families to get outdoors and visit local parks, public lands and waters. Next week you will see our social media campaign to promote Kids to Park Day.” Three youths read the proclamation. Mayor Mary Fast proclaimed May May 21, 2022 as Kids to Parks Day.
A Reedley resident said “Tonight, I want to say I feel glad I attended a program put on by the Recreation department. They put together a first-class presentation. Everyone was moving with precision. Everyone knew when to serve water and coffee. The presentation was awesome. It was great to see teamwork so great job.”
The Council unanimously approved all four items on the consent calendar as presented.
- Approval of Minutes of the Regular Council Meeting of April 26, 2022
- Recommendation of Rejection of Claim – Nouranvar Caldwell
- Approve and Authorize the City Manager to Sign a Service Agreement with Kings Canyon Unified School District for a School Resource Officer
- Approve and Authorize the City Manager to Execute an Agreement on Behalf of the City of Reedley, between the City of Reedley and Kings Canyon Unified School District for the Restorative Justice Initiative (RPBI) for the 2022-2023 Fiscal Year
- Approve and Authorize the City Manager to Sign on Behalf of the City of Reedley a Service Agreement with Kings Canyon Unified School District for Narcotics Detection, Intervention and Prevention for a Period of 3 Years Beginning July 1, 2022 through June 30, 2025
- Adopt Resolution 2022-036, a Resolution of the City of Reedley Requesting the Board of Supervisors of the County of Fresno to Consolidate the City of Reedley Election with the Statewide General Election and Render Specified Services relating to the Conduct of a Municipal Election
- Adopt Resolution 2022-041 Amending the 2021-22 Adopted Budget Appropriating $3,100 in the General Fund to Cover the Cost for Relocating the Existing Scoreboard and the Install of the New Scoreboard at Camacho Park
- Public Hearing Regarding Proposed Amendments to Certain Department Fees and Charges for Services in the Citywide Master Fee Schedule
Russ Robertson, the City Public Works Director said “Per California State law, the City’s water and sewer utility rates must be established through a comprehensive study of the City’s water and sewer operations and costs. The established rates cannot exceed the actual cost of providing water and sewer services. After rates are established, the City must keep pace with new unfunded State mandates and rising costs to sewer and water operations in order to keep the funds solvent. On October 27, 2020, the City Council passed Resolution 2020-093 approving sewer service rates based on a comprehensive sewer rate study performed by an outside engineering company, and established a process for future adjustments of sewer rates. In an effort to keep pace with these cost increases, staff is recommending that the language in the current Resolutions be amended to state that future annual rate adjustments would be tied to the actual CPI during the 12 month period of December through December of the previous calendar year, and also that the annual maximum increase of 2.5% be removed in order for the Enterprise funds to remain solvent and avoid large rate increases in the future. It should be noted that although these changes would help the City keep pace with rising costs, Council will still have the discretion to reduce CPI increases if so desired. The California Constitution, as amended by Proposition 218 in 1996, requires that the public stakeholders be noticed before utility rates are increased or rate calculating processes are changed. The City must provide notice of the proposed action, hold a public hearing on the proposed changes, and consider any protests received. Notice must be sent at least 45 days prior to the public hearing, and the proposed action can be approved at the public hearing and thereafter imposed unless written protests are submitted by a majority of the property owners. The notice was sent to all 6,134 utility customers. At the time that this staff report was written the City had received 6 letters of protest.”
“We value the opportunity to explain why we are doing what we are doing. I’m a little disappointed that we do not have a full house tonight or more people on Zoom” said Public Works Director Russ Robertson. Mayor Mary Fast asked “Does the Council have the authority to change the rate?” Robertson answered “Council always has discretion. Tonight’s action is to adjust the language, not the actual rates. If this is approved tonight, staff will be bringing a proposal of the rates at 4.1% at a future council meeting.”
Councilmember Matthew Tuttle asked “If this does not get approved tonight, will this be brought up again?” Public Works Director Russ Roberston said “Yes, this will be brought up again. We do not know the rate change until the state takes over the city’s utilities because they have to cover the cost of the bureaucracy so the rates will be much higher.” With no further discussion, the Council voted to adopt Resolution 2022-039 and Resolution 2022-040, which adjusts the process in which the annual inflationary increases to sewer and water utility rates are calculated.
- Adopt Resolution No. 2022-042, a Resolution of the City Council of the City of Reedley Approving Conditional Use Permit Application 2022-1, Tentative Parcel Map Application No 2022-1, and Related Environmental Assessment No. 2022-5 pertaining to Proposed Development Located on the South Orange Avenue
“The subject property is located in the southeastern section of the City of Reedley, on the south side of East Dinuba Avenue at the terminus of South Orange Avenue. The Conditional Use Permit Application No. 2022-1 pertains to the construction of a 4.2-acre horizontal mixed-use project that consists of 80 affordable residential units with a 1,500 square foot community building attached to a 1,000 square foot office/retail space for lease. The Tentative Parcel Map Application No. 2022-1 pertains to the subdivision of land from one 18.2 acre parcel into two parcels, Parcel A and PArcel B. Proposed Parcel A would be approximately 4.2 acres in size to encompass a proposed mixed-use project. Proposed Parcel B would be approximately 14 acres in size and would have approximately 83 feet of public right-of-way frontage access off of East Dinuba Avenue.” The Council voted to approve and adopt Resolution No. 2022-042, No. 2022-1, and No. 2022-5.
- Proposed FY 2022-2023 Budget
- Department Budget Presentations: Administration & Administrative Services
City Manager Nicole Zieba said “I am very proud to announce a balanced budget. This is staff’s best recommendations for the fiscal year budget. When I started in 2011, we were looking at bankruptcy and had about 40 employees laid off. Our unions stepped in too. We have one of the lowest crime rates in the valley. We have strong relationships with Reedley College and Kings Canyon. In 2011, we had a 33% unemployment rate. Today, we are at 12% unemployment rate. What we do know is we are so much more poised with our budget. We spend our money strategically. This includes going solar and updating our technology. We passed Measure B. Now is the time for us to be financially prudent so we can weather the upcoming economic wave.”
Paul said “We are continuing refinement to improve accessibility and understandability.”
- Prudent use of one-time resources to focus on facility repairs, equipment replacement and capital projects
- Leverage outside resources where available
- Performance Measures
- Full deployment of available funding for road rehabilitation
- CalPERS Pension Contributions
- Retention of Qualified Staff
- Continue Building the Reserve
Proposed Budget Highlights
- Budget Balanced in accordance with Reedley’s Balanced Budget Policy
- All obligations full funded, debt, labor agreements
- 2 new positions requested and 2 conversions of P/T to F/T
- Add $250K to the reserve, maintains 90 days = $2.9 million
- $18.2 million in planned
“We have 46 active operating and capital funds. The total proposed budget for all 46 active funds is $55,084,218. The 2022-23 General Fund is $18,940,606. This year, the General Sales Tax revenue is forecasted at $2,234,000. Next year, the revenue estimate is $2,337,000. The Public Safety Sales Tax revenue is estimated at $1,635,000. The revenue next year is estimated at $1,695,000. The revenue for Measure B Sales Tax is $2,399,00.
Measure B Sales Tax Projects
- $586,294 will be allocated to police services, including an animal shelter
- $715,000 Neighborhood Street Improvements
- $272,070 Parks Maintenance & Facility Improvements, including a Community Center
- $336,839 CalPERS Unfunded Actuarial Liability
- $600,000 Future Capital set aside
- Future park, fire station, deferred maintenance items
- Fire station #2 currently unfunded at $5,500,00
- Basic Park = $300,000 per acre, not including land purchase
- Measure B will be a critical piece of the funding mix
“The revenue for Property Tax is $1,221,710. The projected revenue for next year assumes a 2% growth. We are looking to add new positions: a police officer position and an engineering assistant. We are also looking at converting two part-time positions to full-time. Which include office assistant to accounting technician 1 and office assistant to staff assistant.
The next steps are:
- May 17, 2022 at 6:00 p.m.
- Community Services
- May 24, 2022 at 6:00 p.m.
- Community Development
- Public Works
- June 14, 2022 at 7 p.m.
- Tentative Budget Adoption
- Councilmember Ray Soleno: No report.
- Councilmember Anita Betancourt: No report.
- Councilmember Matthew Tuttle: No report.
- Mayor Mary Fast: “We approved the housing contract. The meeting will be held on May 25th to start discussing the contract. I also attended the Senior Citizen dinner, there was a great crowd and service.”
- City Manager Nicole Zieba: “Last weekend was the fundraiser. We are moving into an election year, which is different for us this time because we have been redistricted. Congressman Costa reached out to me and said he would like to meet with the Council. He gave me his cell phone number so I can share it with you all. There will be a public meeting in June to go over public interest with a new library.”
With no further discussion, Mayor Mary Fast adjourned the City Council meeting at 9:32 p.m.
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