Meeting Minutes
May 11, 1999

Mayor Rocha called the meeting to order at 7:00 P.M.; City Clerk Martin called the roll.

Present: Council Members Freitas, Soliz, Davis, Sudario and Mayor Rocha


Robert Rogimer commented on the McElheny Road flooding. He relayed the difficulty his disabled wife incurred when her car died and she was stuck in water waist-high while attempting to drive down the road. He stressed the danger of the situation and felt the road should be closed if the City could not maintain it. Public Works Director Brandt stated there is currently an ANOT MAINTAINED@ road sign posted; he further noted the road is part of the non-funded roads in the CIP that will come before the Council next month.

Gary Reiman, Member of the Antioch Rivertown Business Association, invited the Council and Public to attend an event called AArt, Antiques and Arias@ scheduled to take place in downtown Antioch on Saturday, May 15, l999 from 10:00-6:00 P.M.

Gina Lombardo and Members of the Antioch Youth Council announced AClub 99," an amateur showcase featuring local Antioch bands and DJs. She noted the event is open to all Antioch high school students, and would take place at Prewett Park on Saturday, May 15, l999 from 8:00-11:00 P.M.

Larry Hellstrom read portions of a ALetter to the Editor@ of the Ledger Dispatch from Mrs. Roger Henry regarding an incident which took place outside the Council Chambers on March 9, l999. He noted Mr. Reggie Moore was the only person present at the incident, who had not made a public statement depicting his side of the story, and requested Mr. Moore to make a public statement detailing his view of incident.

Robert Kilbourne, Chairman of AAAAC (African Americans Academic Achievement Committee), stated their mission was to be a catalyst that forms alliances and fosters academic achievement for African American students within the Antioch Unified School District. He noted district wide, 74% of the male African American students scored below the 50 percentile mark on the SAT 9 tests. He stated the Committee=s goal is to encourage parents to become involved, start a mentoring program and become role models for their African American students. He stated a meeting would be held on May 24, l999 at 7:30 P.M. at the Antioch Library. Richard Chay, Vice-Chair of AAAAC, noted the City Council could play a vital role in the Committee, improving the achievements of all students. He noted the programs they would instill in the school system would be for all students, stating they would concentrate on those students who were not achieving as well as others.

Ed McMunn discussed a recent Measure AU@ meeting, which he felt went well due to people being apprized of the particulars of growth issues. He also referred to the earlier public comments made by Mr. Larry Hellstrom regarding Mr. Roger Henry and the incident of March 9, l999. He felt Mr. Henry was well intended, respectful and articulate, and he stated he was tired of the character assassinations made by the public at Council meetings. He also referred to public comments made by Liz Rimbault at the last Council meeting regarding alleged improprieties by former and present Council Members, and felt the issue needed to be addressed and the allegations looked into.

Barbara Sobalvarro, on behalf of the Friends of Animal Services, gave a report on the Animal Adopt-a-Thon that took place the previous weekend. She noted 11 animal were adopted. She announced ARC (Association of Responsible Citizens) would be holding a debate for the upcoming School Board candidates on May 27, l999 at 7:00 P.M. in Council Chambers, and invited the public.

Michael Sagehorn, Director of Delta Youth Rugby Club, noted their organization began last February and they currently had 38 players, of which 90% were Antioch residents. He stated they would be playing at Balboa Stadium in San Francisco on May 22, l998 during halftime of the World Cup qualifying games between the U.S. Eagles and Fiji. He thanked their sponsoring companies, who had made it possible for the boys to play for free and also City staff, Leisure Services, and Lonnie Karste who had given their help and guidance in launching their program.

Council Member Freitas stated he felt Mr. Hellstrom deserves a response regarding the March 9, l999 incident that occurred outside the Council Chambers during a Council meeting. He stated his opinion of such altercations were they were premeditated attacks on outstanding citizens such as Roger Henry. He went on to say it was unfortunate and a waste of the services of those police officers who were called to respond to what he felt was a contrived altercation.


On motion by Council Member Soliz, seconded by Council Member Davis, the Council unanimously approved the Proclamations.

Council Member Davis presented the Proclamation to Michael O=Boyle proclaiming May 1999 as Veteran Appreciation Month. Mr. O=Boyle stated they began a program through the Employment Development Department a year ago to help displaced veterans re-enter the work force. He noted they had assisted over 300 Antioch veterans re-enter the workplace so far, and invited all veterans to come and take advantage of their free program.

Council Member Soliz presented the Proclamation proclaiming May 16-22, l999 as National Public Works Week. Director of Public Works Brandt thanked the Council, on behalf of the entire staff of the Public Works Department.

Mayor Rocha presented the Proclamation to Pat Cain, proclaiming June 6, l999 as the Annual Lone Tree Mayor=s Cup Golf Tournament. Mr. Cain noted this was the tenth year of the tournament, and all proceeds will go to charity.








On motion by Council Member Freitas, seconded by Council Member Soliz, the Council unanimously approved the Consent Calendar, with the exceptions of Items D and E which were removed for further discussion.

ITEM D:  Council Member Freitas referred to the Advisory Committee, and suggested language be inserted to indicate how large the committee was and who it was suppose to be composed of. Council Member Freitas also questioned Page 4-G, the last sentence asking why the Investment Committee needed a majority vote.  Financial Services Director Tasker stated it was just to review the process and the language would be changed. Financial Services Director Tasker clarified other language regarding the statement policy.

On motion by Council Member Freitas, seconded by Council Member Soliz, the Council approved Consent Calendar Item D , with clarification by staff. The motion was carried by the following vote:

AYES: Freitas, Soliz, Davis, Rocha
NOES: Sudario

ITEM E:  Council Member Sudario stated she wanted the public to know this was more land being rezoned from Convenience/Commercial District to Restricted/Family Residential Combining District. She noted it now combines single-family homes with commercial, where before it was all commercial.

Community Development Director Ward stated this was the site of the existing 20th Street apartments, and this item was to bring them into consistency.

On motion by Council Member Freitas, seconded by Council Member Soliz, the Council approved Consent Calendar Item E. The motion was carried by the following vote:

AYES: Freitas, Soliz, Davis, Rocha
NOES: Sudario


Council Member Freitas reported on "Contra Costa Tomorrow," an event hosted by the Contra Costa Mayors' Conference, as well as the City County Relations Committee. He stated it brought together Mayors and Council Members from throughout the County focusing on the type of development that would be prudent in Contra Costa County. He noted it was an excellent Conference. He was happy to attend, along with the Mayor, and represent the City of Antioch in this discussion.

Mayor Rocha noted there would be a general meeting of the East County Library held on May 20, l999 in Central County. She noted the meeting would focus on what is going to happen to the library in the near future, as well what is occurring on a state level regarding library funding.

  1. PRESENTATION by Supervisor Canciamilla

Mayor Rocha noted that Supervisor Canciamilla was not present.


Community Development Director Ward presented the staff report dated May 5, l999, recommending the City Council receive and file the report.

On motion by Council Member Soliz, seconded by Council Member Davis, the Council unanimously received and filed the report.


Denise Skaggs, Neighborhood Improvement Coordinator, presented the staff report dated May 5, l999, recommending Council direct staff as to the desired course of action. Ms. Skaggs responded to questions from Council regarding enforcement of the Ordinance.

Dr. Bruner stated the County's Ordinance became effective on January 1, 1999 and they have spent the first six months on an Education Campaign directed toward tobacco retailers. He noted they would work with City staff on the kind of materials that have presented to the retailers and methods for enforcing the Ordinance. He also discussed how other cities are implementing the adopted ordinance in phases.

Council Members Freitas and Soliz felt this Ordinance was something the schools and the School District should be involved in, as it related directly to kids.

Dr. Joel White, Co-Chairman of the Tobacco Prevention Coalition, gave a brief historical background of the Ordinance. He noted they have been working for three years on a number of proposals on how they could best reduce children's stimulus to smoke and their access to tobacco. He stated the tobacco industries own documents show their own advertising and products are designed specifically to appeal to children, and in Contra Costa County approximately 300 children start smoking each month.

Lisa Ramirez, East County Youth Coordinator for TIGHT (Tobacco Industry Gets Hammered by Teens) stated they have TIGHT groups in every city in East County, and they work closely with schools and merchants. She noted she goes to the schools and gives presentations to the students on tobacco prevention education. She commented she is now working to get more students from the Antioch High Schools involved in TIGHT, and they have been going to the high schools and giving out free anti-tobacco T-shirts, hats, and posters. She further stated TIGHT's primary focus is youth development and leadership. The youths go out into the community and document the problems in the stores where retailers place tobacco near items that attract kids, such as candy and ice cream.

Michelle Lockrey, Antioch Youth Council, read a resolution for support of Tobacco Free Youth Policies that the Antioch Youth Council passed on May 10, l999.

Marissa McCoy, student from Antioch High School, urged the Council to pass the Ordinance , as she felt it was very important to do everything possible to prevent youths from falling prey to the tobacco industry.

Latoya, TIGHT, discussed how the tobacco industry targets youth through their advertising, and felt there needed to be a way of preventing teens from being targeted.

Gina Lombardo, President of the Antioch Youth Council, noted $18.6 million was spent in Contra Costa County last year for tobacco advertising. She felt the money could be put to better use in helping our youth. She stated they support the City's passing the Ordinance, and stated they would do everything they could to help see it through.

Emiliano Diaz, student of Antioch High School, discussed ways the tobacco industry lures kids into thinking smoking is cool. He felt TIGHT had helped a lot of kids in the community by educating them in a fun way.

Mike Bacon, Antioch Youth Council, presented postcards to the Council from Antioch and Deer Valley High Schools in support of the Ordnance.

Lori Comstock stated she had been visiting local retailers and photographing tobacco displays located near child-oriented items and she was angry the tobacco industries encourages children to smoke. She felt retailers and the tobacco industry see children as dollar signs and future customers. She presented Council with pictures taken in Antioch stores, where children were being targeted.

Claire Smith, School Board Member, stated she was very proud of the Antioch Youth Council for working so hard to make a positive difference for Antioch's youth. She felt a great deal of effort had taken place within the Antioch School system to educate our children about the dangers of smoking and how they were being targeted by the tobacco industries. She discussed Red Ribbon Week, noting nicotine was a drug and it was illegal for students to possess tobacco. She stated while the school was a Drug Free Zone, students step just out side the school grounds to smoke, and felt the City should start citing these children.

Denise Dennis, Manager of the County's Tobacco Prevention Project, noted merchant education efforts must be supplemented with regulatory measures. She stated their research found the FDA had found a link between advertising and youth smoking behavior. They have also found stringent advertising restrictions reduce youth smoking. She noted they have developed educational material for merchants currently available to the City for distribution upon adoption of the Ordnance. She further noted they would work with City staff to develop procedures to enforce the Ordinance, noting they have developed protocol and procedures for enforcing the Ordinance in the unincorporated areas of the county. She stated it was their experience the retailers come into compliance once they know about the new law.

Council Member Sudario stated smoking was a very addictive habit, and felt this Ordinance was very important. She noted she believes in free enterprise for merchants and their ability to sell cigarettes, just not to minors.

Council Member Freitas commended the students who had spoken before the Council and for their involvement in such an important issue. He noted there needed to be some dialogue on how the City would implement the Ordinance, and felt the City needed the resources of the School District in this endeavor. He felt looking at a project employee for the first 12-24 months may be a way to proceed, to accomplish as much of the work as possible as outlined in the staff report and to easily transition this for full implementation in later years. He stated he was looking forward to staff bringing the Ordinance back to Council for adoption and options for implementation.

Council Member Soliz commended the youth for coming forward and rallying around this issue. He requested staff include projected funding costs required for enforcement purposes when the Ordinance was brought to Council for approval, as he expressed concern for taxing our current enforcement procedures. He stated he would like to receive more information on the current enforcement efforts by the police department in enforcing the federal and state laws currently in place. He requested City Attorney Galstan look into whether or not the City would need to create a legal nexus in order to use enforcement or penalty monies to help support the enforcement program.

Council Member Davis stated he supported free enterprise for merchants, but noted this was not about banning tobacco, but was about preventing youth from starting to smoke. He stated he was in support of the Ordinance, and was happy to be involved with the Antioch Youth Council. He also encouraged the police department to cite those teenagers on the street who were smoking off campus. He noted that in talking to other cities, they not only cite the minors, but require the minors to attend Saturday school with their parents, in lieu of a fine.

Mayor Rocha suggested TIGHT, along with the Youth Council, might want to attend some events, such as the Rivertown Jamboree and the 4th of July celebration, and present their displays to encourage public awareness.

On motion by Council Member Sudario, seconded by Council Member Freitas, the Council unanimously directed staff to prepare an ordinance patterned after the model ordinance adopted by Contra Costa County. Specific provisions for implementation would be made at the time the ordinance was formally considered by the Council.

Mayor Rocha declared a recess at 8:53 P.M. The meeting reconvened at 9:08 P.M. with all Members present.

  2. Council Member Davis presented the staff report dated May 6, l999, recommending the City Council adopt the attached Resolution changing the order of information presented to the City Council and amending the process by which the Council Members would deliberate on items brought before them.

    Council Member Sudario stated her opposition to the proposal. She felt this proposal allows the Mayor to pick and choose who would be allowed to speak at the beginning of the meeting during public comments and who would have to wait until the end of the meeting to give their public comments. She further noted the Brown Act states the public is not required to register with the City Clerk in order to speak. She stated she does not have a problem with the public filling out the speaker forms, but felt they should be called to speak in the same order they were received.

    Council Member Freitas stated this was a joint proposal from Council Member Davis and himself, and noted he had received constant complaints that the Council needed to operate in a business-like fashion. He felt a lot of citizens would like to participate in the meetings, but unfortunately were unable to because certain people talk on every item and take an inordinate amount of time. He stated this proposal would make the meetings more efficient and would permit more speakers to address the City Council. He felt the suggestions outlined were prudent, business-like and would foster communications between the public and the Council.

    Mary Zbacnik stated she was appalled at the Council proposing to limit the rights of speakers. She read from the First Amendment regarding Freedom of Speech, and stated limiting the amount of speaker time was a violation of the First Amendment.

    Norma Hernandez felt the suggestions in the proposal would allow fewer people the opportunity to speak, not more, as suggested by Council Member Freitas. She also stated she was opposed to the Council being required to make a motion before they could speak on an item, and emphasized the importance of Council having the opportunity to discuss an issue amongst themselves prior to making a motion. She further noted some people were abusing public comments by criticizing or slandering people, and felt Council should not allow this to happen, as the public is to speak on subjects within the Council's jurisdiction. She also stated she was opposed to allowing the Mayor to choose the speaker order.

    Lou Koch stated it was important for the public to know they could come to the meeting at 7:00 P.M., turn in their speaker request, and know they would be able to speak during public comments. He noted he supports streamlining the meetings, but felt the 45 minutes that are now set aside at the beginning of the meetings was important to the public. He felt allowing any public official to select the speaker order was wrong.

    William Leroy felt the Mayor was trying to limit the people speaking at public comments. He stated this forum belongs to the people of Antioch.

    Michael Sagehorn stated his support of the proposal and felt it was essential meeting management. He noted there were other avenues in which people could share their views with the Council, such as e-mail, fax, and phone.

    City Attorney Galstan addressed the comments regarding the speaker cards. He stated the Brown Act prohibits any kind of a questionnaire or registration of attendance, not speaking cards.

    Council Member Freitas stated the recommendation before the Council is to try and enhance the public's ability to address the City Council, and he felt more people, not less, would have the opportunity to speak. He stated this was an attempt to run a more efficient meeting to allow Council to get through the items and allow the public to participate in the dialogue.

    Council Member Sudario stated this was an abuse of power and felt the public would feel they had to "suck-up" to the Mayor in order to be chosen to speak first. She stated the order of speakers should be determined numerically by registration order with the City Clerk. She further stated she disagrees with the City Attorney and felt this was a violation of the Brown Act, and the public was not required to fill out speaker cards. She felt by not allowing the Council to speak unless a motion has been made limits her ability to represent the public without reservation. She felt this was a direct attempt to censor those who are not in agreement with the Council majority. She further stated this was a conspiracy to stop any opposition, noting those who oppose the Mayor might not be allowed to speak until public comments at the end of the meeting. She stated these rules were unconstitutional and she would be taking action against them.

    Council Member Soliz felt the items had been streamlined and the issues of concern had been addressed. He stated this proposal would create additional opportunities for more people to speak. He felt this was an important step in trying to move forward and address the business of the City in a more timely manner, thus giving the public the opportunity to address the Council on items of importance without having to wait until late into the night to do so.

    Council Member Davis emphasized this resolution was an attempt to organize our Council meetings in order to accomplish the business of the city in an effective and expeditious manner.

    Mayor Rocha commented this resolution contained much stronger language than she proposed a year ago. She stated she was very happy with the language, and felt it would give everyone the opportunity to come forward and speak at the beginning of the meeting.

    City Attorney Galstan noted he had made a mistake when drafting the resolution regarding Paragraph "K," and requested striking the words "submitted to the City Clerk at the opening of the meeting a Speakers' Request Form but"

    RESOLUTION NO. 99/51

    On motion by Council Member Freitas, seconded by Council Member Davis, the Council adopted the Resolution changing the order of information presented to the City Council and amended the process by which the City Council would deliberate on items brought before the City Council, along with the changes requested by City Attorney Galstan to Paragraph "K." The motion was carried by the following vote:

    AYES: Freitas, Soliz, Davis, Rocha
    NOES: Sudario

  4. Deputy Director of Leisure Services/Purchasing Agent Dave Wetmore, presented the staff report dated May 6, l999, recommending the City's guarantee of the concession contract with Western Sports Enterprise (WSE) be based on 15% of gross sales instead of a fixed sum.

    Director of Financial/Leisure Services Tasker responded to questions from Council Member Freitas regarding the independent audit, stating the audit had not been performed because they had never come close to the gross figure required to get the additional money. However, he noted since the contract would be based on gross sales, the audit will be performed annually.

    On motion by Council Member Freitas, seconded by Council Member Davis, the Council unanimously recommended the City's guarantee of the contract be based on 15% of gross sales instead of a fixed sum.


  6. Acting Chief of Police Moczulski presented the staff report dated May 5, l999 recommending the City Council adopt the resolution adding one (1) additional police sergeant position to the budget. He responded to questions from Council Member Soliz, who asked if the additional Sergeant would be out on patrol, stating the intent of this addition was to have this position remain inside the department and conduct administrative duties, thereby allowing the current sergeants to be more readily available in the field to supervise their officers.

    Council Member Freitas requested future staff reports requesting additional personnel positions state the cost to the City including salary, benefits and overhead.

    RESOLUTION NO. 99/52

    On motion by Council Member Davis, seconded by Council Member Soliz, the Council unanimously adopted the resolution.


Public Works Director Brandt presented the staff report dated May 5, l999, recommending the City Council approve the resolution defining hours of work for contractors performing heavy construction.

Following discussion from Council and staff, Council decided to eliminate the five (5) phone call complaint number currently used to determine "unreasonable noise," and add into the Municipal Code language stating that any police officer, code enforcement officer, or the City Engineer could go out and determine if construction needed to be stopped or if a citation should be issued.

Council Member Freitas expressed concern for contractors being on-site to service their vehicles prior to the hours that were allowed for construction. He suggested the hours of operation be changed. Council Member Sudario concurred.

City Manager Ramsey stated the City would like to perpetuate a sense of being business friendly, and be sensitive to the needs of the construction industry at the same time. He also noted that during the summertime, the workers prefer to start early and leave early, heat being a factor. He also felt enforcement of the rules should be fairly broad and include City Manager or designees, to ensure the City does not find itself constrained during enforcement.

Andy Harris, General Superintendent with a large grading contractor, noted he represents approximately 300 union workers, whose season had been shortened to six or seven months. He noted when the workers were limited to a 8-hour workday, they lose approximately $500-$600 per week in overtime. He emphasized these workers depend on this overtime money to make a living and support their families. He stated the unreasonable portion of the resolution was the "five complaint" section, and stated he would prefer it if the "unreasonable noise" be left to the discretion of staff or police.

On motion by Council Member Freitas, seconded by Council Member Sudario, the Council unanimously directed staff to draft an Ordinance for the Municipal Code using the language submitted by the City Engineer, change Item #4 to eliminate the five (5) telephone calls, and bring back to Council for the adoption process.


Council Member Sudario stated she could not support the resolution, as she felt the Engineer who originally did the work should be responsible for the repairs. She felt it was unfair to tax the people in Assessment District 27, and this is a Proposition 218 issue. She also stated she was opposed to using the same Engineers who did the original work for the repair work.

Public Works Director Brandt stated the geological reports received from the project did not indicate the need for the repairs was due to faulty work done in 1993. He read from the staff report 10 possible causes for failure according to a geo-technical report done in 1988 by a geological engineer, after the fact. He clarified that out of the 10 possibilities for failure, only one of these possibilities could have been controlled by the contractor, and noted the City had retained a construction inspector who ensured the appropriate testing was accomplished.


On motion by Council Member Freitas, seconded by Council Member Soliz, the Council adopted the resolution approving plans and specifications and authorizing the City Clerk to advertise for bids for Lone Tree Way pavement rehabilitation by the following vote:

AYES: Freitas, Soliz, Davis, Rocha
NOES: Sudario


On motion by Council Member Freitas, seconded by Council Member Soliz, the Council unanimously voted to receive and file.


    1. APPROVAL OF AGENCY MINUTES - April 13, l999


On motion by Agency Member Soliz, seconded by Agency Member Freitas, the Agency unanimously approved the Agency Consent Calendar.


Ron Anderson asked the Council to reconsider the item giving the Mayor ability to choose the order of the speakers. He felt it would lead to censorship, manipulation, or discrimination.

Dan Richardson stated he was very concerned about the conditions of Antioch's roads, and felt the City needed to be very careful on how they budget their money for road repairs.


Council Member Freitas noted another fast food restaurant had been approved, and stated he wanted any fast food restaurant approved by the Planning Commission to be automatically appealed and brought back to the City Council. He noted Antioch is saturated with fast food establishments, and he wanted the opportunity to vote against fast food establishments. Council Member Sudario stated she was in agreement with Council Member Freitas on this issue.

City Attorney Galstan stated if the Council wanted to seriously pursue this issue, one avenue would be to have a interim ordinance to consider changes to the Zoning Ordinance to prohibit fast food establishments during this "interim" period of time. He suggested the Council should agendize this item if they wanted to discuss it any further.

Mayor Rocha stated there would be another Child Care Workshop held on May 19, l999 from 8:30 A.M.-12:00 P.M. at the maintenance building.


City Manager Ramsey brought Council's attention to the memorandum outlining the meeting schedule for the next month, noting it was a very busy schedule.


With no further business, Mayor Rocha adjourned the meeting at 10:59 P.M., to the next scheduled City Council Workshop on May 18, l999.

Respectfully Submitted:


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