Tom Butt
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  City Manager's Weekly Report for the Week Ending December 11, 2015
December 14, 2015

Mayor and Members of the City Council:

This is the weekly report for the week ending December 11, 2015.

1.    Meeting Notes

The next City Council meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, December 15th beginning with a closed Session at 5:00 PM, followed by the Special City Council Study Session at 5:30 PM, the Joint Powers Finance Authority/Richmond City Council meeting at 6:15 PM, and with the regular City Council agenda commencing at 6:30 PM.  The agenda may be found by clicking this link.  Please note that this is the final scheduled meeting for 2016; the first City Council meeting in 2017 is scheduled for January 12th.

2.    City Offices Holiday Closure 2015

As has been the case during the past three years, as a cost saving measure and with the cooperation of our bargaining units, the City offices, Library and Recreation will be closed during the holiday week in December, beginning Thursday, December 24th, with offices reopening on Monday, January 4th, 2016.

The Police (233-1214) and Fire Departments (307-8031) will remain open, and R-Transit, Public Works, Recreation, and Housing Authority departments will have partial services as outlined below.


Regular R-Transit services will be available until 5:00 PM on Wednesday, December 23rd, 2015, and will resume on Monday, January 4, 2016.  

Between December 24th and January 1st, the Taxi Scrip Program, another transportation service offered through the R-Transit Division, will be available 24 hours per day, as usual. Taxi scrip books must be purchased at the Cashier’s Office in City Hall located at 450 Civic Center Plaza on the 2nd Floor no later than Tuesday, December 22nd by 3:00 PM.

Please call 510-307-8026 to schedule services or if you have any questions.

Recreation Department Schedule for December 24th to January 1, 2016:

The Recreation Department Administrative Offices and all other facilities, except the Plunge, will be closed from December 24, 2015 to January 1, 2016.  The Plunge will be available at the following days and times:


1 Garrard Boulevard                     510.620.6820

OPEN FROM                                  10:00 AM TO 2:00 PM
12/26, 12/27, 12/28, 12/29, 12/30

All Recreation Department facilities will resume normal programming on January 4, 2016.

3.    Annual Fire/Police Toy Program

Every year, the Richmond and El Cerrito Fire and Police Departments hold the annual holiday toy drive for families in need. The toys are all donated by residents like you as well as businesses in and around Richmond. Once collected, the toys are given to families who register for the giveaways. This year's program is set to occur on December 19, 2015.

Today, Richmond Police Officers, staff from Code Enforcement and the Richmond Police Activities League (PAL) visited Parker Hannifin Veriflo Division, a local business that manufactures valves and regulators for the semiconductor industry. This is Veriflo's second year of donating children's bicycles to the holiday toy drive.

Veriflo has 234 employees at their Richmond facility. The employees, along with business partners MKT, NCL and a few others, put their heads and hearts together to buy 245 children's bicycles for this giving event.  That's not all!  The employees spent their weekend at work building all the bicycles, and they even had a Quality Assurance section to ensure each nut and bolt was snug and the bikes were built up to spec!  Talk about giving back to the community!!

Even with generous donations like this, the annual holiday toy program is short on monetary and toy donations. The program is only as successful as the amount of giving hearts in our community. If you would like to help with donations, please call RPD's Crime Prevention Manager Michelle Milam at (510) 837-9257 or visit

4.    City Manager Chronicles

I have listed below some of the topics for meetings that I attended this past week in the hope that it provides an idea of the varied issues with which our organization deals routinely.

Activities and meeting topics during the past week included:

·         Met, together with Housing Authority Director Tim Jones, Assistant City Attorney Carlos Privat, and Development Project Manager Charice Duckworth, with US Department of Housing and Urban Development Deputy Assistant Secretary Marion McFadden, and Contra Costa County Community Development staff, to discuss the status of the City’s CDBG and HOME programs;
·         Met, together with Finance Director Belinda Warner, with Russ Branson, the consultant with PFM and the National Resource Network, who is working with the City on the five-year budget forecast and model;
·         Attended my monthly meeting with West Contra Costa Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Bruce Harter;
·         Met with representatives from the Raise Up Richmond Coalition to discuss their interests in Berkeley Global Campus community benefits;
·         Attended a meeting of the Richmond Heights Neighborhood Council, at which Finance Director Belinda Warner, Councilmember Vinay Pimplé, and I discussed the City’s budget;
·         Attended, and served as a “juror” for, the final presentation of a design competition, at which UC Berkeley City Planning and Architecture students presented development plans for opportunity sites in Richmond;
·         Attended the Southside Plus One Improvement Association holiday luncheon;
·         Participated in a conference call with representatives from the Institute for Local Government and several other cities to discuss a panel presentation at the upcoming League of California Cities City Managers Department meeting;
·         Met, together with Assistant Police Chief Allwyn Brown, with new Contra Costa County Animal Services Director Beth Ward;
·         Attended the monthly Contra Costa Public Managers Association meeting;
·         Attended the meeting of the Berkeley Global Campus Community Working Group.

These meetings were in addition to attending the regular management staff meeting, agenda planning, reviewing staff reports to the City Council, doing department head “check-ins,” having discussions on various personnel matters, and having short discussions with staff, community members, members of the press, etc.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions about the substance of these or any other topics.

5.    Get Covered Tomorrow! Health Care Enrollment Event (Covered CA/Medi-Cal) Saturday December 12th

Start 2016 off right and enroll in Covered California/Medi-Cal today! Millions of families now qualify for free or low-cost healthcare.  Better health is just one application away.

Get assistance to complete your Medi-Cal or Covered California application or renewal before the deadline. Come to the “Let’s Get Covered!” event and take the opportunity to complete your application with the assistance of Certified Enrollment Counselors.

Let’s Get Covered Enrollment/Renewal Event

Date:       Saturday, December 12, 2015
Time:       10:00 AM – 2:00 PM
Location:  440 Civic Center Plaza, Richmond (Richmond City Council Chambers)

Languages Supported: Spanish, Nepalese, Hindi, Urdu, Chinese

Please call Gabino Arredondo, (510) 620-6606 - to make sure you’re ready to enroll or if you have any questions. To download the fliers go to the City of Richmond Health Initiatives webpage at

Download the Event Flyer for more information: Get Covered! Flyer

Please bring proof of the following for enrollment:
o   IDENTITY: Photo ID, driver’s license, or U.S. passport for each adult applying

o   CA ADDRESS: Any piece of postmarked mail sent to you
o   INCOME: Last 30 days of paystubs, 2014 income tax fillings, and Social Security cards of everyone applying
o   CITIZENSHIP OR IMMIGRATION STATUS: Birth certificate, permanent resident card, certificate of naturalization, or certificate of citizenship for each person applying (Information on options for people that do not qualify for Medi-Cal or Covered CA will be provided.)

o   WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW – for each family member: number of people enrolling (whole or partial family), birth dates, Social Security numbers, home Zip code

6.    Annual Downtown Holiday Festival is Wednesday, December 16th

Santa Claus is coming to downtown! Richmond Main Street Initiative and the East Bay Center for the Performing Arts invite the entire community to come downtown to the historic Winter’s Building for an evening filled with memorable activities for the entire family.  The Downtown Holiday Festival is on Wednesday, December 16th, from 4:00 PM – 8:00 PM at the East Bay Center for the Performing Arts (339 11th Street in Richmond).

The event will feature Santa visits (4:00 PM – 7:00 PM), performances of “A Richmond Nutcracker” for children and adults of all ages at 5:00 PM & 6:30 PM, special holiday treats and free books (while supplies last), and La Rama Procession followed by Holiday Street Lighting & Caroling at 7:30 PM.

Admission is free, made possible through the partnership between Richmond Main Street Initiative and East Bay Center for the Performing Arts, with generous support from the City of Richmond, Kaiser Permanente, the Share the Spirit program, Sims Metal Management, Mechanics Bank, and individual donors and volunteers.

For more information visit or call (510) 236-4049.

7.    Love Your Block

The Love Your Block BART Art installation has been a huge success. Since its launch on November 30th, the interactive community art installation at Richmond BART has invited the community to share their thoughts on two prompts, one being “Before I Die, I want to…” and the other asking “With $1,000, how would you #LoveYourBlock?”.

The City of Richmond’s “levitating” AmeriCorps staff
at the Love Your Block BART Art installation

The installation was inspired by the work of global artist Candy Chang who created the “Before I Die” wall as a way to invite people to reflect on their lives and share their personal aspirations in a public space. This is Richmond’s first installation.

Richmond Pulse, a local youth-led news source has put together a video from the ribbon-cutting event that took place last Friday, December 4th. View the video here: Love Your Block Video

The Love Your Block Grant is still open. We are looking for solid proposals that aim to revitalize the City. Priority will be given to residents of North Richmond and Parchester, but everyone in Richmond is encouraged to apply. Check out our application here: Love Your Block Grant application. We are accepting applications until 5:00 PM on December 15th.

8.    Made in Richmond Foodie Gift Box

This holiday season, share Richmond's new energy with family, friends and coworkers. The Richmond community has developed wonderful gift boxes beautifully assembled by California Delicious, a local business dedicated to creating gourmet selections from across California in spectacular gift boxes and celebration packages.

The City of Richmond and the Richmond Economic Development Commission worked together to develop gift boxes with a range of gourmet options made right here in Richmond from our growing “foodie” cluster, including: Lemur International, Inc., Nutiva,  Cassandras Dream Cakes, Catahoula Coffee Company, Oren’s Kitchen, Lotus Foods, R & B Cellars, Urban Tilth and Vassell Foods.

The Made in Richmond gift box, available in assorted sizes, is a testament to the diversity and businesses that make Richmond a premier destination in the Bay Area.

We encourage you to experience a taste of Richmond. To find out more information and purchase the Made in Richmond gift boxes, please visit to California Delicious’ Richmond webpage: 

9.    City of Richmond Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) Program Receives $15,000 Grant

The City of Richmond has received a $15,000 grant from the San Francisco Foundation to support capacity building, marketing and outreach for the Richmond Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) program.

The RLF is a community based program with the goal of fostering local economic growth through the creation and retention of employment opportunities and complementing community development initiatives. The RLF provides loans for working capital, purchase of machinery and equipment, fixed assets (leasehold improvements or renovation), and facade improvements to improve the exterior appearance of a building. 

Since the Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration Revolving Loan Fund (EDA- RLF) grant was transferred to the City, 37 loans totaling over $1.5 million have been approved to Richmond small business owners who had been declined by a bank. The loan funds assisted with creating and saving hundreds of jobs for the Richmond community, and retention and expansion of Richmond businesses.

The loan amounts range from $5,000 to $100,000, with the loan cost of $150.00 for up-front application fee and a 2% loan origination fee at closing.

For more information on this program, please contact Janet Johnson, Economic Development Administrator, at or by phone at (510) 307-8131.

10. November 2015 Business License Filings

The Finance Department is reporting that there were a total of 45 new business license filings in the month of November 2015, with 64 jobs created as a result. 

11. Hacienda Tenant Relocation Update

In January 2015, the Richmond Housing Authority received approval from the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development for the disposition of the Hacienda public housing development and approval of Tenant Protection Section 8 Vouchers to assist in the relocation of the residents. The Housing Authority has retained the professional firm of Autotemp to provide relocation assistance for the residents. As of the Week ending December 11, 2015 the following relocation activity has occurred:

Total # of units 101







Tenants interviewed







Vouchers Issued







Inspections Conducted







Req. to port out of RHA







Applications Submitted







Relocations completed







Autotemp consultants are actively providing ongoing advisory assistance; in addition to the fifty-six (56) completed relocations, thirty-seven (37) Hacienda households have been accepted with approved applications and unit assignments at the newly constructed Harbor View Senior Apartments, with Housing Quality Standards (HQS) Inspections pending issuance of Certificates of Occupancy, bringing the total number of Hacienda residents that have found replacement housing to ninety-three (93). Of the completed relocations, eleven (11) households have successfully leased-up outside our jurisdiction from Sacramento to Los Angeles and throughout the Bay Area; two of them have successfully leased-up outside the State of California (New Jersey and Arizona).

12. Deadline for Comments on Richmond Bay Specific Plan Is December 15, 2015

The draft Richmond Bay Specific Plan (RBSP), formerly known as the South Shoreline Specific Plan, is now available for public review and comment.  The deadline for comments on the draft RBSP is on December 15, 2015. 

The RBSP will facilitate the implementation of Richmond's new General Plan by establishing specific planning policies, regulations, and urban design guidelines for an approximately 220-acre area located in the City of Richmond, south of Interstate Highway 580. The RBSP will focus on ways Richmond can take advantage of the planned Berkeley Global Campus at Richmond Bay, future ferry service, and other area assets to create a sustainable shoreline district providing jobs, housing, transportation options, and opportunities for entertainment and recreation. This planning effort is being funded in part by a Priority Development Area Planning Grant from the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG) and the Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC).

Comments on the draft RBSP must be in writing and received no later than December 15, 2015.  Please send comments to:

Lina Velasco, Project Manager
Planning and Building Services
450 Civic Center Plaza
P.O. Box 4046
Richmond, CA 94804-1630

Comments may also be sent electronically to

Start of Public Review: October 1, 2015           
End of Public Review: December 15, 2015

Plan Availability: A copy of the draft RBSP is available for review online at  Copies are also available for review at the following Richmond locations:

  • Richmond Public Libraries: Main Branch, 325 Civic Center Plaza;
  • Bayview Branch Library, 5100 Hartnett Avenue;
  • West Side Branch, 135 Washington Avenue; and
  • City of Richmond, Planning and Building Services Department, City Hall, 450 Civic Center Plaza, 2nd Floor.


13. Officer Bradley A. Moody Memorial Underpass Project – Unveiling Event Scheduled

With the reopening of all lanes of traffic and sidewalk at the Officer Bradley A. Moody Memorial Underpass, the City has scheduled an unveiling event for Thursday December 17th at 11:00 AM.  The event will be held at the project site, on Marina Bay Parkway between Meeker and Regatta.  During the event, Marina Bay Parkway will be temporarily closed to vehicular traffic.

The community is invited to attend to celebrate this milestone. For additional information, please contact the project’s Public Outreach Coordinator Jacqueline Majors at (925) 949-6196.

14. Nevin Avenue Improvement Project – Next Phase Commencing December 7th

The Nevin Avenue Pedestrian and Bicycle Improvements Project is a reconstruction of Nevin Avenue between 19th Street and 27th Street that will improve aesthetics and safety for travel between the Civic Center and Richmond BART Station areas. The project involves new sidewalks, curb and gutter, streetlights, landscaping and stormwater drainage improvements. 

The next phase of work on Nevin Avenue, from 24th to 27th streets, is scheduled to begin on December 7th.  During this phase, the eastbound lane of Nevin Avenue will be removed for storm drain installation.  This will necessitate demolition of the south side of the street between 24th and 27th streets.  During this phase, one way traffic control will be in place and only westbound traffic will be permitted. To avoid the construction area, visitors to Civic Center facilities are encouraged to use the parking lot located at Barrett Ave and 25th Street.  The one way traffic control and local street closures will be in place for the duration of work on this phase, estimated to be approximately four to six months.

The map below outlines the area of work and traffic and pedestrian routes. For additional information or to be added to the project update contact list, please contact the project’s Public Outreach Coordinator Jacqueline Majors at (925) 949-6196.  You can also follow the project on Facebook at or at

15. Richmond’s Minimum Wage Ordinance

The City of Richmond’s Minimum Wage increase goes into effect January 1, 2016.  The new minimum wage set forth in the Ordinance will be $11.52 an hour (compared to $9.00/hour for the State of California and the initial $9.60/hour wage initially established in the City on January 1, 2015) and it applies to any employee who works two or more hours per week.

The Employment & Training staff posted notices announcing the increase on KCRT, and the City’s website. Packets will be mailed to over 3,000 businesses and the Richmond Chamber of Commerce members to inform them of the change.  The information packet includes English and Spanish versions of the official notice that must be posted in all workplaces along with a list of employer and employee rights under the ordinance.  Employers who pay for less than 800 hours of employee labor in a given two-week period need not pay the City’s minimum wage until they pay over 800 hours or more of employee labor in a two week period. This is the first of three annual increases that will max out at $13.00/hour on January 1, 2018.

For questions and concerns please contact Gina Baker at (510) 307-8011.

16. The 2015 Community Survey Available to All Richmond Residents to Complete

The 2015 Richmond Community Survey can now be completed by ALL Richmond residents in English or Spanish by accessing the following link:

The last day to complete the survey is December 31, 2015.

Feel free to contact LaShonda White in the City Manager’s Office at (510) 620-6828 with questions, comments, or to obtain a paper copy of the survey. Your input can help make the City of Richmond a better place to live, work, and play. We look forward to receiving your feedback.

17. R-Transit

Updates on R- Transit’s holiday schedule and more news is available in the R-Transit Holiday Newsletter: R-Transit Holiday Newsletter

R-Transit provides door-to-door transportation service to persons with disabilities and seniors (age 55 and older) living in the communities of Richmond, Kensington, El Sobrante, East Richmond Heights, Hasford Heights, Rollingwood, and North Richmond. Register for services and reserve a free round trip ride to Rosie the Riveter World War II Home Front National Historic Park. See the flyer below for additional details.

R-Transit offices will be closed during the holiday week beginning Thursday, December 24th and will re-open on Monday, January 4th, 2016.

Regular R-Transit services will be available until 5:00 PM on Wednesday, December 23rd, and will resume on Monday, January 4th, 2016.

Between December 24th and January 3rd, the Taxi Scrip Program will be
available 24 hours per day.

Group Trips

Do you and your friends have a destination in mind? Plan your next group trip to your favorite restaurant, movie theatre, church, shopping mall, or casino. Visit any Bay area attraction, or plan a lunch with your friends at Fisherman’s Wharf, or Pier 39. Watch a movie at Hilltop Century 16 on Mondays and enjoy a senior discount.
Pricing is based on a various factors (i.e distance, route, number of stops, total hours).

For planning and pricing, contact 510-307-8026 with your travel plans. All travel must take place during weekdays and between the hours of 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM.
Ride in comfort to your next destination!

18. Information Technology

Facebook Statistics

New Page LIKES         increased by      57.1%
Post Reached              increased by 1,380.0%
Engagement                increased by     441.2%
Total Reached             increased by     175.9%

Top 10 Webpage visits for the week ending 12/11/2015


KCRT DataNet 

THROWBACK THURSDAY:  Featuring Richmond California History

Please take a moment to comment and LIKE our City of Richmond Facebook post, and enjoy the History Trivia drawing.  Do you recognize this image?  Where and when was this photo taken? All correct answers posted in the comments section of the Facebook post before 8:00 AM on the following Thursday will be entered into a drawing for a prize. In addition to your comments, if you LIKE this post, you will be entered twice. #tbt


For more information about Richmond’s Facebook page, please visit:
Richmond, CA Facebook

City of Richmond Mobile APP UPDATE

Great News! The City of Richmond mobile app is now available. It provides Richmond’s community members with one-stop access to City services and information.  You may watch the informational video  for an overview of the app available for free at Apple App Store for IOS devices and at Google Play for Android phones. 
city of richmond smartphone app 4-Gabino

The City of Richmond is looking forward to feedback from the community on this new Mobile APP. We welcome your comments at

19. Recreation Highlights


Adult Morning Program participants were involved last week helping staff prepare the Richmond Auditorium for the Snow Ball.  They also assisted Richmond Senior Center staff at the Auditorium with food preparation, serving and clean-up for the Nutrition Program which serves meals to seniors.  In addition to regularly scheduled activities such as exercise, music therapy, and cooking, Therapeutic Interactive Recreation Program participants completed decorating the Christmas tree to gear up for some holiday fun at the Disabled People’s Recreation Center.

Dec-1-2015Nov-30 to Dec-4-2014


The Shields Reid Achieve Afterschool program joined the North Richmond Green Team on Thursday, December 3rd to help plant trees and flowers at the North Richmond Senior Center.  Twenty-five participants rolled back their sleeves and got into the dirt and soil just in time to miss the rain storms.

Green TeamGreen Team 2
Youth Sports

On December 5th and 6th, the City of Richmond Youth Sports Unit held its inaugural under six Youth Futsal tournaments. Four teams participated with over 50 players and 300 spectators involved at the Richmond Recreation Complex. Because tournaments for this age group are generally not held, this was a new experience for most of the players. Everyone had a great time and participants are already asking for another one; they are truly excited to compete again.


Annual Snow-Ball

Saturday, December 5th, the Recreation Department also hosted the 63rd Annual Snow Ball.  Approximately 900 students representing high schools in the West Contra Costa Unified School District were in attendance and enjoyed an evening of dancing, hors d'oeuvres, the coronation ceremony, and a lot of fun!  During the coronation, the new King and Queen were crowned, both representing Middle College High School. 


20. Public Works Updates

Facilities Maintenance Division:
Carpenters have completed various tasks related to the American Disability Act (ADA) improvements at the Library.

Painters completed the main social room at the Senior Center.

Senior Social Room

Stationary Engineers restored heat to the Madeline Whittlesey Room of the Main Library, replaced apparatus exhaust motor at Fire Station #64, fixed the freight elevator at the Richmond Auditorium, rekeyed the Washington Field House and serviced the building management system for the Civic Center.

Utility Workers set up for various meetings and events, moved office items, cleaned broken glass near the Senior Center and maintained 29 City owned facilities.

Glass Clean-up at Senior Center

Electricians repaired park lighting in the Marina area, two knock downs, replaced receptacles in the Hilltop Substation, removed damaged street light at Richmond Parkway and Giant Highway and fixed electrical boxes at the Elm Playlot.

Streetlight Removal

Parks and Landscaping Division:  
General maintenance crews trimmed around the Civic Center, performed maintenance on the Richmond Parkway, repaired equipment at Raincloud and John F. Kennedy Parks, installed dog waste stations at John F. Kennedy Park, removed a section of grass at Nicholl Park, aerated lawns at the Civic Center and weeded around the Main Library.

Aerating Lawn CCP
Civic Center Lawn Aeration

Hilltop Districtcrews continued work on the landscaping project near AM/PM on the Richmond Parkway, leaf clean up in the right of ways and general maintenance on the Richmond Parkway.

General maintenance on Richmond Parkway
General Maintenance on the Richmond Parkway

Tree crews trimmed or cut trees on/at: Stewarton Drive, Center Avenue, Gateley Avenue, 35th Street, 37th Street, Rheem Avenue and Lowell Avenue.

Streets Division
Paving staff ground and paved Colusa and Modoc Avenues, conducted storm patrol, constructed and delivered sand bags, worked from the outstanding pothole list and delivered barricades.

Colusa Avenue Paving

Street sweeping performed commercial and residential sweeping services for the first Monday and the second Tuesday through Friday in the; Parchester Village, Hilltop Bayview, Hilltop Green, Fairmede/Hilltop, May Valley, Vista View, Clinton Hill II – IV and East Richmond neighborhood council areas. Please note that there is limited sweeping, if any, on rainy days.

Signs and lines staff fabricated signs, installed pavement delineations, installed eight signs and poles and painted 420 feet of curb.

Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or comments about these or any other items of interest to you.

Happy Holidays!

Bill Lindsay
City Manager
City of Richmond
450 Civic Center Plaza
Richmond, California 94804
(510) 620-6512

You can sign up to receive the City Manager’s weekly report and other information from the City of Richmond by visiting:


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