Study Session/Regular Meeting

June 6, 2000
6:00 p.m.
City Council Chambers

Mayor Rocha called the meeting to order at 6:09 P.M., and City Clerk Martin called the roll.




Present:  Council Members Davis, Soliz and Mayor Rocha


Council Member Freitas arrived at 6:10 P.M.




Council Member Davis led the Council and audience in the Pledge of Allegiance.




City Manager Ramsey introduced the budget, giving a brief history of the budget process to date.  Before turning the meeting over to Finance Director Tasker, he noted there would be ample time for questions and discussion. He further stated the hope was any further changes to the budget would be corrected and the budget would be ready for adoption on June 13, 2000, or if not, adoption could take place on June 27, 2000.


Council Member Freitas questioned the function of Human Resources, 19th and "D" Streets. He also questioned the future plans for the Historical Society Museum=s previous residence, 519 AF@ Street, to which City Manager Ramsey stated currently there were no plans for the building.


Council Member Soliz stated and Council Member Freitas concurred, it was in the best interest of the City and the Historical Society to move forward with the matching funds of $31,000, provided the transaction was completed by December 31, 2000.


Mayor Rocha wanted to ensure the funding for the joint crossing guards with Antioch Unified School District. City Manager Ramsey stated the School District would have to continue to provide crossing guards whether or not the City contributes toward the cost of the crossing guards.


Council Member Soliz stated if it came to a choice between the crossing guards and the historical building, he would have to support the crossing guards. However, he hoped the School District would be able to fund the crossing guards on their own.

City Manager Ramsey then turned the meeting over Police Chief Moczulski, who presented a statistical comparison regarding the requested budget changes for Antioch Animal Services. 

Council Member Soliz stated he had found the presentation to be an interesting analysis, adding he still felt the benefit would be worth the extra cost. Furthermore, he felt the community had concurred it would be worth paying a little more for the level of service they wanted from Animal Services. He also stated he was in favor of the fill-time Kennel Attendant position. He stated it had long been his opinion the employees in this area should be better compensated for their services.

Council Member Freitas felt some of the topics in need of discussion were: flexibility, two full-time positions (to aid in filling the positions), the feeding, cleaning, and over-all general cleanliness of the kennels; he asked Chief Muczulski for his input.


Chief Muczulski stated neither the Police Department nor the City as a whole had realized the impacts the implementation of the Hayden Bill would have on the City. He stressed he felt the number of Attendants recommended in the budget was adequate.

Kate O=Connor, Animal Control Supervisor, stated she felt the animals in the Shelter were humanely cared for under the current staffing level. She stated the use of Animal Control Officers did not distract from the care of the animals. She did state the kennel would definitely benefit from another part-time (20 hours a week) Kennel Attendant. 


City Manager Ramsey requested Council to revisit and consider their policy regarding Animal Services. He stated two years previous, Council had decided to increase the subsidy to Animal Services, at an alarming rate, spread out over the last few years. The issue was not the number of hours of each kennel worker, but rather the level of service being given to the animals.


Council Member Soliz stated his concern was the level of staffing, ensuring there was adequate staffing for animal care and legal enforcement.

Council Member Freitas asked whether or not the addition of a part-time position would enable Animal Services to have a Kennel Attendant available at all times at the kennel. He stated he would like the focus of the first six months of this year to be used to determine how the seven approved positions would be filled. He stated he felt the use of Animal Control Officers as Kennel Attendants was both a misuse and loss of City funds. He suggested the Council revisit this issue in January 2001 to determine whether or not a need to reallocate funds was necessary.

Council Member Soliz suggested the City try to partner with Los Medanos College for Kennel Attendants as part of their curriculum.

Barbara Sobalvarro thanked the Council for their consideration of this item. She stated she felt Antioch was the only shelter who did not employ full-time attendants, adding she also thought Antioch had the only shelter where the animals were not all accessible to the public.


Jim Boccio recited the line in the City=s mission statement directing citizens to be Aproud of our heritage,@ adding the requested $31,000 by the Antioch Historical Society was a sound and well founded investment for the City.


Mayor Rocha called for a break at 7:30 P.M. The meeting reconvened at 7:39 P.M. with all members present.


City Manager Ramsey discussed the items to be considered during the remainder of the Study Session and introduced Public Works Director Brandt.


Public Works Director Brandt stated the Council had requested clarification of the Capital Improvement Program, and reviewed the requested items of concern. He explained it would be more cost effective to repair roads in their early stages of disrepair, a savings of 50-75%, rather than waiting until the repair was a necessity because of severe damage.


Council Member Freitas stated it was important to include the funding of the AA@ Street extension in the near future. He also asked to have an accounting of those roads most impacted by the outcome of the voters' decision regarding streetlight and landscaping. He asked to have a schedule of the paving for the Contra Loma Ball Field parking lot. He also felt the undergrounding policy issue should be addressed during the next six to nine months.


Council Member Davis stated the traffic situation at Deer Valley Road, Hillcrest Avenue, and Davison Drive intersection needed to be studied closely.


Estuardo Sobalvarro stated AG@ Street was removed from the budget a few years ago, and felt it should be put back into the schedule, adding it was in desperate need of repair.


City Manager Ramsey stated the next area of concern was Personnel, where the only area to be discussed was the Civic Arts program. 

Council Member Freitas stated he was concerned about resolution of the Civic Arts issue. Ms. Chaumette stated Council had requested Civic Arts be reorganized as a non-profit organization. She further stated that progress was being made in that process, and a report would be given to Council before the end of the requested 60 days.

Council Member Freitas stated he wanted this item on the agenda for a full report. He then asked for clarification of the budget for Civic Arts as recommended in the budget.

 Council Member Soliz left the meeting at 7:49 P.M.


City Manager Ramsey brought up the issue of the City website. Council Member Freitas stated the use of the website should be exercised to its fullest capacity as an outreach tool. He felt the more the City developed the website, the greater access we could provide to the public. City Manager Ramsey stated staffing was a major issue, as optimum use of the website requires it be updated consistently and accurately for public use.


Mayor Rocha felt the City should look into increasing the staffing level. 


Council Member Freitas stated the GIS system should have web capabilities for public access. Public Works Director Brandt explained the plan was to have the GIS system available to the public through the City=s website as soon as City staff was comfortable with the use of the system. Council Member Freitas stated he would like to have multiple levels available on the City=s website.


Council Member Freitas requested the issue of a subsidy for certain activities be agendized at a later date to establish a policy.


City Manager Ramsey stated the issue of a multi-year budget would be brought back during the mid-year budget review. Regarding the Economic Development budget, it was suggested some of the anticipated money from Calpine be set aside for economic development. This would enable the City to have money available for use to promote economic development, thus suggesting the City Ado things differently@ by allocating some of these monies. It was further stated it would be prudent to use some of the Calpine money to complete the extension of AA@ Street. He also stated it would be prudent for the City to finance the use of grant writers for economic development to assist the City in capturing Federal and State money available for this use. He then requested a placeholder for $100K for a grant writer, possibly shared with the Chamber of Commerce, if Council would agree. Council Member Freitas concurred with this request.


City Manager Ramsey felt it would not be a problem to have the budget revised to reflect Council=s requests and be ready for adoption on June 13th, adding the other possibility was to bring the budget to Council on June 27, 2000 for adoption.


Mayor Rocha requested the issue of the stipend for the positions of the Mayor and Council Members be visited to bring them into compliance with other cities, and also acknowledging the extensive duties of the Mayor.

Council Member Soliz returned to the dais at 8:38 P.M.




Barbara Sobalvarro stated the question of the compensation of the Mayor and City Council was a valid and fair request. She also asked for clarification on the final request for the Kennel Attendant. She also asked if there was going to be a change in title of the Attendant, and was told it would be agendized for June 27, 2000.




Council Member Freitas stated there was a move by Assemblyman Tom Torlakson, AB2929, stating BART should keep its agreement to extend to Antioch and Livermore before going outside the District boundaries. AB2929 would require any city outside the District to pay a Abuy-in cost@ for deviation from the original plan. He suggested the City prepare an insert for the water bills providing information on AB2929, urging the public to write the State Legislature regarding the building of the Hillcrest BART station.


ADJOURNMENT to Closed Session


Mayor Rocha adjourned to the Closed Session at 9:48 P.M.




PUBLIC COMMENTS for Closed Session




  1. Existing litigation. Bay Area Addiction, Research and Training vs. City of Antioch, U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit, #C 98-651-SI. This Closed Session is authorized by Government Code 54956.9.

  2. Anticipated litigation. Initiation of litigation pursuant to Government Code 54956.9 (two cases).

Respectfully Submitted: