Mayor and City Council:
This is the weekly report for the week ending April 26th, 2013.
I have come to enjoy the week ending ritual of preparing this report to the City Council, which is shared with subscribing members of the community. Although I receive great assistance in this task from LaShonda White and Soco Perez in the City Manager’s office in compiling this report, and from the various departments who submit to me items of interest to include therein, I retain the final responsibility for the content of the “weekly” [and any errors – typographical or other – that appear]. I do the final writing, editing, and arranging before hitting the “send” button.
This week, as I finalized the report, the specific items that it contained caused me also to do some reflecting. At this week’s end, I was able to report on a community literary fair, envisioning a new streetscape adjacent to a refurbishing park and elementary school, engaging students in planning the Richmond community, a growing movement of volunteerism, youth achievement, projects that promote clean energy and a sustainable community, and ongoing, excellent contributions by City staff. All in all, there were 13 items of great material extending over 19 pages, and it is quite possible that you will find yourself in one of these items.
There is a great deal of work to do – perhaps because there is so much “upside” in the Richmond community – and our City organization will need to strive to continuously improve as we approach our work. Nonetheless, as you read this report, I encourage you to do as I did, which was to remark on the many positive activities, events, and achievements that have defined the Richmond community this past week.
Next week, the City Council will celebrate the fifth Tuesday of the month with a night off from a City Council meeting. The next meeting of the Richmond City Council is scheduled for Tuesday, May 7th. Enjoy the week off.
- LEAP at Richmond Tales Literacy Fair
Literacy for Every Adult Program (LEAP) joined dozens of other organizations on Saturday, April 20th, to celebrate the 4th annual Richmond Tales Fest, a city-wide fair. The event featured literacy, health, environmental and other educational booths, in addition to wonderful entertainment organized by staff of the East Bay Center of the Performing Arts.
The West County Reads coalition, of which LEAP and the Library are members, hosted this extravaganza to encourage residents to read at home and read with their children. Almost 1,000 books were distributed from the LEAP booth, thanks to the work of the Junior League of Oakland East Bay. The League’s membership had launched a book drive at the beginning of the year. Thirty boxes of the donated books were brought over to the fair for children of all ages. On Saturday, Junior League members were present with LEAP staff and volunteers to distribute the books.
LEAP at Richmond Tales Literacy Fair, April 20, 2013
- Cutting Boulevard Community Visioning Meeting – Monday, April 29th
On Monday, April 29th from 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM, please join the City of Richmond and Opticos Design, Inc. for a community visioning meeting regarding the development of Cutting Boulevard between South 9th Street and Marina Way South. A draft concept plan will be presented based on community input. The meeting will be held at the new Multipurpose Building on Nystrom Elementary School campus at 230 Harbour Way South (entrance is on S. 11th and Virginia Avenue). Light refreshments will be served.
For more information, please contact LaShonda White at email@example.com or at (510) 620-6828. We look forward to seeing you there!
- Y-PLAN Final Student Presentations
On Tuesday, April 30th, Richmond High School Health Academy senior students will mark their capstone projects with a final presentation to key community stakeholders from 5:00 PM – 7:00 PM at the Richmond City Council Chambers. West Contra Costa Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Bruce Harter will open the event with welcoming remarks.
The Richmond High Health Academy seniors have developed recommendations to enhance the transit connectivity between North and South Richmond, and to encourage an accessible and open design for the proposed Richmond Bay Campus site in Richmond.
Entitled “Unifying Two Worlds: Connecting Richmond,” the presentation will summarize a semester-long process in which students of Richmond High Health Academy teacher Jose Irizarry III engaged in real-world community development research and planning through the Y-PLAN (Youth – Plan, Learn, Act, Now!) model. Developed and run by UC Berkeley’s Center for Cities and Schools at the Institute of Urban and Regional Development, Y-PLAN is an award winning methodology and action research initiative that is a yoth-oriented catalyst for community revitalization and educational reform. Everyone is welcomed to participate!
- Richmond ESC – Excellence Serving our Community - Celebrates Volunteers!
This month, the City of Richmond’s impact volunteering program, Richmond ESC - Excellence Serving our Community – has been buzzing with activities to promote and recognize city-wide volunteerism in Richmond.
Mayors Day of Recognition for National Service
On April 9th, Mayor Gayle McLaughlin joined over 1,700 mayors across the United States for the first-ever Mayors Day of Recognition for National Service. The day marked the extraordinary service of national AmeriCorps members. Mayor McLaughlin and staff from Richmond ESC visited John F. Kennedy High School’s Health Center where AmeriCorps members from Bay Area Community Resources are serving students and families.
Pre-Global Youth Service Day Activities
Gearing up for Global Youth Service Day (April 26 – 28) on April 20th, nearly 50 youth enthusiastically volunteered at the Richmond Tales Fest, hosted in Richmond Civic Center Plaza , and the West Contra Costa Unified School District’s Walk-a-Thon and Earth Day event, which was held in at Shimada Friendship Park.
Proclamation – Global Youth Service Day
At the April 23rd City Council meeting, youth leaders representing the Richmond Global Youth Day Leadership Council, the Colima Project, Middle College High School, the Richmond High School Kiwins Club, and the San Pablo Youth Commission, received a proclamation from Mayor Gayle McLaughlin recognizing April 26 – 28, 2013, as Global Youth Service Day. This is Richmond’s inaugural participation in the global event.
2nd Annual Volunteer Recognition and Awards Ceremony
On Thursday, April 25th, volunteers and organizations were recognized at the 2nd Annual Volunteer Recognition and Awards Ceremony by Mayor Gayle McLaughlin, City Manager Bill Lindsay, and Joan Davis, President and CEO of the Richmond Community, for their dedicated service to the Richmond community. City-wide nominations were received to recognize meritorious and distinguished service volunteers in the areas of arts, beautification, education, health and wellness, public safety, youth service, and excellence in community service.
The 2013 Distinguished Service Award recipients:
- Arts - Hanka Boudreau
- Community Beautification - Andromenda Brooks
- Education - Mike Mahoney
- Health and Wellness - Dr. Desmond Carson
- Public Safety - Richmond CERT Citizens Advisory Panel on Emergency Readiness and Response
- Youth Service - Teonna Thompson
- Excellence in Community Service - Richmond Commission on Aging
The 2013 Meritorious Service Award recipients:
- Arts - Kate Sibley, Faye Young; and The Masquers Playhouse
- Community Beautification – Antonia Vanoni, Herbert Warren, and Richmond Trees
- Community Health and Wellness - Eric Avery; Anthony Bryant; Donny Davis; Lisa Duncan; Gail Garrett; Bruce Greenlee; Garry Hurlbut; Robbie Hurtado; Johnny Holmes; John Marquez; D L Poole; Dr. Tony Sillemon; Tracy Taylor, RD CDE; and Eric White
- Education - Joey Aduviso; Edwin Bolds; Paul Hirsch; Pedro Lespier; Shanying Lee; Sharon May; Patricia Mendoza; Rebecca Newburn; Ryan McQuiston; Northland Nautical Foundation
- Read-Aloud Volunteer Program; and Vicki Winston
- Excellence in Community Service – Marisela Aguiniga; Wayne Farinas; Jane Fischberg; Sandi Genser-Maack; Ron Gibson; Daryl Henline; Janet Johnson; Jan Mignone; and Pamela Wimberly
- Public Safety – Antwon Cloird
- American Planning Association Conference - Chicago
Last week, several City of Richmond staff members were in attendance at the 2013 National American Planning Association Annual Conference in Chicago. Of particular note, Richmond Senior Planner Lina Velasco made a presentation, together with planning consultant Lisa Wise and Stefan Pellegrini of Opticos Design, Inc., as part of a workshop entitled, “Missing Middle Housing: Essential Components of the 21st Century City.” The workshop highlighted the City of Richmond’s initiatives in planning for multifamily housing types that have been out-zoned due to parking, open space, and setback requirements. The workshop was enthusiastically received by more than 300 participants. The conference was also attended by Jennifer Ly, Sustainability Associate in the City Manager’s Office. More than 5,000 planners, professionals, students, and community members attended the conference. View conference photos.
- YouthWORKS Academic Program
The YouthWORKS Academic Program has completed their mid-year report. Outcomes to date include:
- Over 1,000 hours of volunteer labor through the community service ‘Hometown: Richmond!’ program;
- 97% average daily attendance by participants in their ‘home’ high school;
- 100% CAHSEE pass rate for Seniors in the program, 75% pass rate for Sophomores and Juniors; and
- A 2.75% average GPA.
Hometown: Richmond! projects include the creation of a mural, as well as design, creation and installation of bike racks (for which participants undertook welding classes), 50 street trees planted, and participation in the San Francisco Bay Area National Parks Science and Natural Resources Symposium (two participants presented on their “Tree-Party Program” which involves the renewing of the tree canopy in the Iron Triangle, Santa Fe and Coronado neighborhoods. A short documentary on the program will be completed soon). Special thanks to National Park Service Ranger Matt Holmes for submitting the presentation request and Lana Husser and her Green Screen Team for their documentation.
The Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP) application period has ended and we are two-thirds through our pre-employment training modules. Currently, the program has over 350 participants in the pre-employment training for 265 available slots.
YouthWORKS has partnered with Mechanics Bank, the US Conference of Mayors, and Bank of America to implement a Savings Incentive Program for this year’s SYEP participants. Mechanics Bank will offer a no fee/no minimum savings account to participants, and a small grant from the US Conference of Mayors and Bank of America will allow YouthWORKS to provide incentives for opening a savings account this summer. Incentives include a match up to $100 for the top 25 savers and provide cash awards of $200, $150 and $100 to the top three savers over the course of the summer program. Accounts will be opened at the Mira Vista Branch of Mechanics Bank at 4100 Macdonald Avenue in Richmond.
(Back Row: Xavier Abrams, Mechanics Bank; Mayor Gayle McLaughlin; James Kirby, US Conf. of Mayors, Richard Aguilar, B of A; Front Row: YouthWORKS Participants Katrina Khoonsirivong, Jamayo Nelson and Holly Keuith)
- Richmond Program to Reduce Junk Mail
In the spirit of Earth Day and Arbor Day this week, we wanted to remind all residents and businesses of Richmond’s unique opportunity to stop unwanted mail at the source. We encourage all residents and businesses to enroll in this free service at https://richmond.catalogchoice.org to stop unwanted catalogs, phone books, credit card offers, coupons, and other marketing material received at home and in the workplace. By using the Catalog Choice service, residents and businesses help Richmond reduce landfill waste at the source, help the environment, and save money spent on waste collection and disposal.
Visit our www.richmondenvironment.org for more information on the program. Sign up today!
- MCE Clean Energy Program Updates
What is the MCE Clean Energy Program?
MCE is a public agency and not-for-profit electricity provider that gives customers the choice of having 50% to 100% of their electricity supplied from clean, renewable sources such as solar, wind, bioenergy, and hydroelectric at competitive rates.
Community Choice Aggregation programs such as MCE allow cities and counties to offer their citizens and businesses another option for where to purchase electricity besides the current utility (PG&E). MCE's goal is to provide a greater support for renewable energy at competitive rates to Richmond residents and businesses. By choosing MCE, Richmond's electric customers help support the development of new in-state and local renewable energy generation.
MCE Community Meeting – Monday, April 22nd
On Monday, April 22nd, the MCE Clean Energy program and the City of Richmond co-hosted a well-attended community meeting to provide a presentation, discussion and answer questions about Richmond's new electricity options. Discussion topics included MCE background and partnership with Richmond, public notification and the enrollment process, and the opt up and opt out process. Please visit www.mceCleanEnergy.com/richmond or http://www.richmondenvironment.org for more information.
MCE Program Enrollment and Opt Out Notices
MCE sends five notices as part of its effort to help electric customers make an informed decision. The notices will inform customers of the electricity service choices they have with instructions on how to opt out or how to obtain more information about the program.
By now, all customers have received the first enrollment notice. MCE began mailing the second enrollment notice to electricity customers the week of April 22nd. Electric customers continued to receive the first opt out notice through the week of April 29th.
A third notice will be mailed in May. Richmond electric customers will be enrolled with MCE service in July 2013, on their regularly scheduled meter read date unless they choose to opt out. In July, all electric customers in Richmond will be enrolled in MCE's Light Green 50% renewable energy option unless they choose to opt out. Richmond customers have 3 electricity options:
- MCE ‘Light Green’ 50% renewable energy (automatic enrollment and competitive rates with PG&E)
- MCE ‘Deep Green’ 100% renewable energy (a penny more per kilowatt hour)
- PG&E electric supply that is 20% renewable energy
After the July enrollment, a fourth and fifth notice will be mailed to remind customers of their account enrollment with MCE. For no charge, Richmond customers will have the option to opt out of the program beginning in April. Customers who choose to opt out after 60 days of service with MCE will be charged a one-time $5 (residential) or $25 (commercial) administrative fee.
A rate comparison calculator is available on the MCE website - www.mceCleanEnergy.com. Based on current rates for PG&E as well as MCE proposed rates (scheduled to become effective in April 2013), MCE will cost Richmond residential customers about $0.59 more per month on average, and commercial customers will see an overall cost savings. This rate comparison reflects proposed rates of April 1st and is a “snap shot in time” comparison. It is important to note that these rates are likely to change as PG&E typically changes rates three times per year. MCE changes their rates once per year in April and the proposed changes are reflected in the rate comparison.
Electric customers who 1) choose to opt out, 2) opt up to ‘Deep Green’ 100% renewable energy, or 3) would like more information, should call 1 (888) 632-3674 or visit www.mceCleanEnergy.com. The opt out instructions, phone number and additional information are also included in the opt out notice customers will receive in the mail.
- Richmond ESC & Global Youth Service Day
Get your SERVE on! Join millions of youth around the world who are addressing the most important issues in their communities on Global Youth Service Day. Richmond ESC – Excellence Serving our Community – is the lead agency for the City of Richmond’s inaugural participation in Global Youth Service Day. Richmond youth will be volunteering the whole month of April. Check out the projects listed below and get involved today! Here is the link to the website with the events: http://richmondvolunteers.org/press/view/post/315. Call 237-SERV (7378) for more information.
Rape/Sexual Assault Awareness Workshop*
(11th & 12th grade female students only)
Saturday, April 27, 2013 from 10:00 AM- 2:00 PM
Richmond High School in Richmond, CA
Global Youth Service Day in Honor of Cesar Chavez*
Saturday, April 27, 2013 from 10:00 AM- 2:00 PM
Richmond Greenway- in Richmond, CA
Butterfly & Caterpillar Garden Project
Saturday, April 27, 2013 from 10:00 AM- 2:30 PM
Richmond Greenway- Edible Forest Garden in Richmond, CA
Healthy Kids Day*
Saturday, April 27, 2013 from 11:00 AM- 2:00 PM
Coronado Community YMCA in Richmond, CA
Peace Celebration Festival*
Saturday, April 27, 2013 from 10:00 AM- 2:00 PM
Contra Costa College, Amphitheatre in San Pablo, CA
San Pablo Youth Commission Childhood Obesity Prevention Project
Saturday, May 4, 2013 from 10:00 AM- 5:00 PM
St. Paul Church Parking Lot in San Pablo, CA
Drop-out Prevention-Keeping Students in School!
Wednesday, May 15, 2013 from 06:30 PM (tentative)
Lavonya DeJean Middle School in Richmond, CA
GYSD Youth Recognition Ceremony* RSVP Only
Thursday, May 16, 2013 from 5:00 PM- 8:00 PM
Richmond Auditorium Lobby in Richmond, CA
*Signature event with expected attendance of 100+
Abatement Crews performed weed abatement on the 7th Street Walkway and Creek area.
Parking Enforcement Representative Stephanie Miller received the March employee of the month award. Stephanie was nominated by a colleague for being a true team player! At times, a Parking Enforcement Representative’s duties can be highly stressful. However, Stephanie’s positive attitude is used to change potentially negative situations into positive interactions. It has been said that Stephanie’s pleasant demeanor makes the day brighter for herself and her co-workers. Stephanie is appreciated and highly regarded not only by her co-workers, but also management.
Code Enforcement Employee of the Month –Stephanie Miller
Thank you, Parking Enforcement Representative Miller and keep up the good work!
- West Contra Costa Unified School District (WCCUSD) Town Hall Meetings to Discuss School District Action Plan
WCCUSD will be holding a series of community meetings to gather information for a new strategic plan for the district. The meeting schedule is as follows:
10:00 AM April 27th, El Cerrito High School multipurpose room, 540 Ashbury Ave.
6:30 PM May 9th, Pinole Middle School multipurpose room, 1575 Mann Drive
10:00 AM May 11th, Kennedy High School library, 4300 Cutting Blvd., Richmond
Facilities Maintenance: Carpenters completed the post and beam repairs at Fire Station #68, repaired the entrance doors at 1350 Kelsey Avenue, and repaired a wall at the Fire Training Center.
Painters completed painting the hallways of the first floor of the Richmond Auditorium, the columns of the walkways of Civic Center Plaza, and the lobby of the Employment and Training office.
Stationary Engineers repaired the circulation pump at the Richmond Museum, replaced the second furnace motor at the Parchester Center, repaired emergency eyewash stations, and installed a chair lift at the Richmond Plunge.
Installed Chairlift at Richmond Plunge
Utility workers have been auto scrubbing the entire Civic Center Plaza and within City Hall.
Autoscrub of Civic Center Plaza
Electricians continue to work on the Park wire theft lighting project.
Shield Reid Park Lighting Project
Crescent Park Lighting Project
Parks and Landscaping Division: This week crews installed a new picnic table and pad at Judge Carroll Park and repaired a chain link fence along Hensley Avenue. Crews also performed irrigation work at Booker T. Anderson Park, pruning at the Richmond Fire Training Center, landscape maintenance along the Bay Trail, maintenance of the Ann and Elaine Pathways, vegetation maintenance on Amend Road lot, and irrigation repairs at Olinda School field.
Tree crews completed work on Lincoln Avenue, Visalia Avenue, Gaynor Avenue, Clinton Avenue, 27th Street and Key Boulevard.
Streets Division: This week the paving crew grinded and paved on Cutting Boulevard and at Point Molate Park.
Paving on Cutting Boulevard
Street sweeping was performed in commercial and residential areas for the fourth Monday through Friday in Santa Fe, Point Richmond, Marina Bay, Coronado, Metro Richmore Village, Pullman, Cortez/Stege, Park Plaza, Laurel Park, City Center, Richmond Annex, Parkview, Panhandle Annex, and Eastshore neighborhood council areas.
Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or comments about these or any other items of interest to you.
Have a great week!
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450 Civic Center Plaza
Richmond, California 94804