Oxnard Council Approves More Homeless Action/$, Downtown Code/Redev. Architecture; Maulhardt HS/Parks Project Advances

By George Miller

The July 16, 2019 Oxnard City Council covered a report of progress on the homeless situation, approval of $1,500,000 in grants to help address it and authorization to use the National Guard Armory as a 24 hour shelter. Then the Council made it clear that they are fed up with lack of progress on helping the homeless and reducing their negative impact on residents, although they are heartened by signs of recent progress.

Meeting AGENDA, VIDEO

The Oxnard Downtown Management District and Levied Assessments renewal to 2025 passed with a nearly 80%  supermajority of downtown businesses and a unanimous Council vote.

The downtown code was modified for redevelopment, to redefine the boundaries and rules, specify architectural styles and eliminate the downtown transportation district/urban village, to focus on the core downtown areas.

The Late former community activist and Pt Hueneme CouncilMan Jim Hensley

Illegal fireworks were worse than ever this year- one death, one serious injury- 1200+ complaints. Police Dept. and residents are frustrated and furious.

Mayor Flynn and Councilman Perello paid tribute to recently deceased former Port Hueneme Councilman Jim Hensley;

El Rio Little League is going to the state championship- needs financial assistance/donations- gofundme/elriolittleleague, they said. When we looked it up, it seemed that this is the correct url: https://www.gofundme.com/f/el-rio-little-league-seniors . Need 10 grand. It was nice to see fine young athletes enthusiastically pledging allegiance to the flag instead of kneeling or complaining.  Please donate.

 

D. VC Fair Poster selected

Dania Vasquez of Santa Paula designed the winning poster entry for this year’s Ventura County Fair. The slogan is Country Fair with Ocean Air.  This year’s fair will be 7-31-8/11 at the Fairgrounds.

 

F. Public Comments on Items Not On the agenda

Marie Larkin- (ex Assy Navas aide) Now Exec Director of CFROG- anti oil/gas drilling and pesticides. 50 oil/gas wells are within one mile of a mobile home park. Board of Supervisors will hear this on July 23, 1:30 pm. Invoked environmental justice.

Jackie Tedeschi- INCO (Inter-Neighborhood Council) Chair, thanks Asst City Mgr Klama for speaking on the needs for live filming of INCO meetings.

Pat Brown- Warns of social Security scam calls. They do not telephone members of the public, so don’t respond to such calls

 

G. City Manager Report

‘G-1– Need action on the Downtown Business Improvement District agenda item tonight. Jeff Lambert- Community Services Director- will handle this. Council voted to give authority to do this.

Vote was 8-0 to approve it, including Housing Commissioners

 

Fireworks 

Asst Police Chief Eric Sonstegard expressed his frustration with the abuse of illegal fireworks in this 4th of July season in Oxnard. They put out publicity about this and trained officers to discourage it, but it sounded (literally if you were in Oxnard on July 4) like it didn’t work so well. It can be quite dangerous. One person killed while lighting up a mortar type firework. Another lost several fingers. 102 officers were deployed on July 4 (not nearly enough) 1250 complaints received. 377 fireworks disturbances reported. Sonstegard drove all around and was not able to actually identify a specific offender. Very hard to identify 32 civil summons were issued with fines up to $1000. 240 lbs of fireworks were seized. Over 30,000 showed up for the City fireworks show- said to be the largest turnout ever. Over 200 CA cities allow sale of fireworks. Community is divided on this. Some were very hostile and even directed fireworks at officers. Will start earlier with education.warnings next year. Pets and also vets with PTSD are especially vulnerable.

Lambert reported on Magic Auto nuisance on Oxnard boulevard- 760-950 S Oxnard Blvd. 492 calls received in recent years.  This place is a mess- very unsightly. Licensees have been revoked. Now prohibited from operating an auto business. Lambert said  that there are threats to health, life and safety of the public. 28 cases and four more active ones. $35,000 in fines/assessments levied/unpaid. 160 vehicles remain on tyhe property. May put them into receivership to put them into compliance and charge the property owner.

City Mgr. Nguyen: Assemblywoman Jacqui Irwin, Senator Hannah Beth Jackson and Assemblywoman Limon helped to get a $9/.5 MM wastewater grant. State Resources Control Board approved that recently.

Council Comments

Lopez- Thanks for making District 5/6 townhall meeting possible,

Perello- Welcomed Skip Turner Airport Dept Mgr. (He was at the meeting) Impressed by Jim Hensley Memorial Service.

MacDonald- New Gold Coast Transportation center opened last week.

Ramirez- fireworks abuses were serious- thanks to Asst. Police  Chief Sonstegard. Clean Power board meeting July 25 11-1 pm. 11201 Riverbank Drive, about program planning for the future of clean power. One million customers – working on clean energy plans- opportunity. Concerned about opening of more oil wells on Oxnard plain, outside city limits. Oxnard is a very burdened community, with pollutants, asthma. Working on Homeless situation- attended district meeting on this. Public is concerned about this, but can’t just make people disappear. Jim Hensley was not a milquetoast guy but very concerned about the community.

Basua- Thanks  to Peggy Rivera and Elizabeth Garcia for organizing Townhall meeting.

Madrigal- Condolences to Jim Hensley and family. Jim always wanted to give a helping hand. Condolences to an ex-student who passed away. Went to book signing of Growing up in La Colonia book.

Flynn- Many landscaping-related complaints. $500K in water use savings is partially at fault. 12 staffers were laid off and 2 graffitti action people. High risk exists of potential tree losses. City water trucks will water trees. By the time trees show symptoms, it may be too late.  Please report tree lean or abnormal growths- use “311 app.” 32 positions cut citywide.

 

K- Information Consent Agenda

Here’s what was approved with almost zero discussion (below). Only K-5 and 13 were pulled for discussion. Perello says anyone who participates in a city activity is ensured and that these activities and city employers are vetted.

Renee Rickstra (spelling?) introduced an employee who said any equipment/users are insured by the year. All people leading activities are background checked for city-run activities, but not for things like private leagues. Perello would like background checks on them too, because he thinks the city is at risk there. Are their insurance policies registered with the stat, he asked?. Rickstra said yea. Perello is not sure. In response to Perello’s question, a City Attorney said they look at the ratings, but insurers may not be registered with CA.

Ramirez- thinks utility rate assistance program  is great. Madrigal on item 13- We don’t spend all the funds. What if we overspend? A: we can’t, there is a ceiling for recipients. City is now using late payment penalty funds to help finance this. Only $50,000 spent on assistance program in two years vs $800,000/yr in penalties collected.

Public Speakers

Peggy Rivera- Are sub-meter customers (such as mobile homes) included? A: from Jay Duncan project Mgr- this is a goal for second year of the program. These are privately held organizations and receive collective bills- hard to sort them out. Not currently in the program.

Vote on Consent Agenda- 7-0 unanimously approved

Items approved :
1. City Clerk Department
SUBJECT: Approval of Minutes.
RECOMMENDATION: That the City Council approve the minutes of the July 2, 2019 regular
meeting as presented.
Legislative Body: City Council
Contact: Michelle Ascencion, (805) 385-7805
2. Community Development Department
SUBJECT: Transfer of Housing and Governmental Purpose Assets from the Community
Development Commission Successor Agency to the City of Oxnard.

RECOMMENDATION: 1. That the City Council adopt the attached Resolution titled “Resolution
Of The City Council Of The City Of Oxnard Approving (1) The Acceptance Of Housing And
Governmental Purpose Assets From The Oxnard Community Development Commission Successor
Agency, Pursuant To The Provisions Of The Dissolution Law, And (2) Related Actions To
Effectuate The Acceptance Of The Assets”; and
2. That the Successor Agency adopt the attached Resolution titled “Resolution Of The Board Of
Directors Of The Oxnard Community Development Commission Successor Agency, Approving,
And Recommending to Its Oversight Board Approval Of, (1) The Transfer Of Housing And
Governmental Purpose Assets To The City Of Oxnard, Pursuant To The Provisions Of The
Dissolution Law, and (2) Related Actions To Effectuate The Transfer Of The Assets.”
Legislative Body: City Council, Successor Agency
Contact: Jeffrey Lambert, (805) 385-7882
3. Community Development Department

SUBJECT: PZ No. 19-580-02 (Zone Text Amendment) – An Amendment to Chapters 11 (Permits)
and 16 (Zoning) of the Oxnard City Code Pertaining to the Permitting and Development of Firearm
Ranges and Businesses Engaged in the Sale of Firearms and Ammunition.

RECOMMENDATION: That the City Council approve the second reading by title only and
adoption of Ordinance No. 2961 of the City Council of the City of Oxnard for PZ No. 19-580-02
(Zone Text Amendment) amending Chapters 11 (Permits) and 16 (Zoning) of the Oxnard City Code
pertaining to the permitting and development of firearm ranges and businesses engaged in the sale
of firearms and ammunition.
Legislative Body: City Council
Contact: Jeffrey Lambert, (805) 385-7882

4. Cultural & Community Services Department
SUBJECT: Appropriate Funds for the Oxnard Performing Arts and Convention Center (PACC).

RECOMMENDATION: That the City Council:
1. Recognize additional PACC revenue in the amount of $32,086 for FY 18-19;
2. Approve a Measure O Half Cent Sales Tax Operating Transfer in the amount of $96,270 to
PACC Fund 641;
3. Ratify Agreement No. A-8156 with the Oxnard Performing Arts not-to-exceed $150,000 for
immediate PACC expenses necessary for the operation, maintenance and management of the
PACC; and
4. Ratify a one-time appropriation of $130,205 for costs associated with PACC salaries and benefits
for FY 18-19.
Legislative Body: City Council
Contact: Terrel Harrison, (805) 385-7994
5. Cultural & Community Services Department
SUBJECT: Response to Grand Jury Report Titled “Youth Sports and Public Liability.”

RECOMMENDATION: That the City Council authorizes the Mayor, the City Manager, and the
Cultural and Community Services Director to respond, on behalf of the City Council, to the Grand
Jury Report titled “Youth Sports and Public Liability Report” dated April 14, 2019, in the form
included as Attachment B.
(Item heard by Community Services Committee on July 9, 2019)
Legislative Body: City Council
Contact: Terrel Harrison, (805) 385-7994
6. Finance Department
SUBJECT: Appropriate Funds for Transient Occupancy Tax audit services.

RECOMMENDATION: That the City Council approves a budget appropriation for Fiscal Year
2019-20 that recognizes a $52,400 increase in General Fund transient occupancy tax (TOT)
revenues (101-1001-513-7014) and a $52,400 increase in General Fund contract services for audit
expenditures (101-1001-801-8203).
Legislative Body: City Council
Contact: Kevin Riper, (805) 385-7475
7. Housing Department
SUBJECT: Building Equity and Growth in Neighborhoods grant program income.

RECOMMENDATION: That the City Council:
1. Appropriate all program income from the California Building Equity and Growth in
Neighborhoods (BEGIN) grant to the down payment homeownership assistance program, including
eligible administrative expenses; and
2. Authorize the City Manager or designee to execute all budget appropriations and documents
related to implementation of these grant programs.
Legislative Body: City Council
Contact: Emilio Ramirez, (805) 385-8094

8. Human Resources Department
SUBJECT: Purchase Order for Property Insurance for Fiscal Year 2019-20.

RECOMMENDATION: That the City Council approve and authorize the Mayor to execute a
purchase order in the amount of $395,829.67 with Alliant Insurance Services, Inc. for property
insurance for coverage during Fiscal Year 2019-20.
Legislative Body: City Council
Contact: Mike More, (805) 385-7480
9. Police Department
SUBJECT: Response to Grand Jury’s Annual “Detention Facilities and Law Enforcement Report.”

RECOMMENDATION: That City Council authorizes the Mayor, the City Manager, and the Police
Chief to respond, on behalf of the City Council, to the Grand Jury’s annual “Detention Facilities and
Law Enforcement Report” dated April 16, 2019, in the form included as Attachment B.
Legislative Body: City Council
Contact: Scott Whitney, (805) 385-7624
10. Police Department
SUBJECT: Response to Grand Jury’s “Drugs and Sharps Disposal” Report.

RECOMMENDATION: That City Council authorizes the Mayor, the City Manager, and the Police
Chief to respond, on behalf of the City Council, to the Grand Jury’s “Drugs and Sharps Disposal”
dated May 2, 2019, in the form included as Attachment B.
Legislative Body: City Council
Contact: Scott Whitney, (805) 385-7624
11. Police Department
SUBJECT: Animal Safety Unit Update and FY 19-20 Animal Shelter Agreement

RECOMMENDATION: That the City Council approve and authorize the Mayor to execute a one
year-agreement (A-8151) with the County of Ventura Public Health Agency for animal sheltering
services, in an amount not to exceed $2,113,884 (or net value of $1,333,884 based on credit of
projected animal licensing revenue of $780,000), for Fiscal Year 2019-2020. (Public Safety
Committee approved 3-0)
Legislative Body: City Council
Contact: Scott Whitney, (805) 385-7624
12. Public Works Department
SUBJECT: Grant Resolutions for the Tšumaš Creek Trail Project.

RECOMMENDATION: That City Council adopt resolutions authorizing the City Manager to
submit a grant application and execute grant agreement (if awarded) for the Tšumaš Creek Trail
Project, and authorizing the Finance Director to submit financial reports and claims, and approve
special budget appropriations for the use of the grant funds. Staff anticipate the project cost not to
exceed $4 Million. There is no City funding or match required for the proposed project.
Legislative Body: City Council
Contact: Rosemarie Gaglione, (805) 385-8055
5
OXNARD CITY COUNCIL OXNARD FINANCING AUTHORITY HOUSING AUTHORITY
OXNARD COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT COMMISSION SUCCESSOR AGENCY
July 16, 2019 PAGE 6
13. Public Works Department
SUBJECT: Utility Rates Assistance Program (“Project Assist”).

RECOMMENDATION: That the City Council:
1. Adopt a resolution repealing Resolution 15,008 for the Rate Assistance Program (Project Assist)
for year three to increase the monthly relief rate from $10 to $15;
2. Authorize staff to direct up to $145,000 annually from penalty fees charged to current customers
who pay their bills late to fund the Utilities Rate Assistance Program; and
3. Receive an update on the second year of “Project Assist” that began July 1, 2018.
(Public Works and Transportation Committee approved 3-0, however Councilmember Perello did
not support the amount of the contribution increase.)
Legislative Body: City Council
Contact: Rosemarie Gaglione, (805) 385-8055
14. Public Works Department
SUBJECT: Approve Budget Appropriation for Special Districts Division.

RECOMMENDATION: That the City Council approve and authorize a budget appropriation to
Westport CFD 2 Special Project (Fund 175-1606-805-8229) in the amount of $169,900 for
additional amenity improvement projects from Westport CFD 2 Fund Balance. (Public Works and
Transportation Committee approved 3-0)
Legislative Body: City Council
Contact: Rosemarie Gaglione, (805) 385-8055

 

I-1- Approval of Oxnard Downtown Management District and Levied Assessments to 2025

Maintenance, safety and beautification are the main priorities. Homelessness has been cited as a MAJOR problem needing city assistance. Majority of owners have approved. City would then renew the district.

Public Comments

‘Fernando Garcia- (US army vet and youth counselor. Own a restaurant, pool hall and on the board. Was formerly against the district, but things have only gotten worse and they pay $7000. Homeles and busiess competition else where are hurting them. But if we clean up the district and approve public safety, customers will come., Meanwhile, people are getting shot on our block and streetlights are out. Need city council and PBID on the same page. Now supports the renewals and is optimistic that we can effect change/improvement. Thanks Police for their vigilance

Vince Behrens (owns American Dry Cleaning)- Thanks city for signing up for this.

Tia Estrada- Owns a building on C and 5th. Added west side of C street to the PBID (district). Have been disappointed with lack of progress and lack of caring by the people who have the power to effect change, Voted for the PBID. Challenge all to pay attention to downtown. LaVerne has made great improvements to a”dead’ downtown. Please come and visit, go to the meetings and listen. Money wasted on consultants.

Peggy Rivera- Many improvements in downtown district, but not up to what we wanted. This is the heart of the city,. Thanks to Abel Magamo and Jeff lambert.

Suzie Gonzalez- Is this signed off already?  Sounded that way. A: Just city controlled properties. Other Votes are still being tallied.

Council Comments

Madrigal- this has been a long process, board and Magamo have worked very hard. Hard to ask for money unless it is being put to good use.

Ramirez- appreciate business owners who approved/supported PBID. We are on the cusp of improving downtown. Hopeful about opportunities, starting with more businesses and residents with disposable income and walkable transportation center.

MacDonald- South A Street  700 block now has a “parklet” in front of Tomas Cafe- almost done, Plaza Park is not in the best of condition. Park squatters were not willing to move their stuff out of the way when car show owners asked. We are losing events because of this. People are uncomfortable going to Plaza Park, We are painfully aware of this- doing everything we can.

Lopez- Spent time in downtown. Worked for Abel Magama- understand what is being done,. Want to attract businesses, residences, hope to see it move forward.

Flynn- Downtown has been a congrating place for some of the  600 Oxnard homeless. Social Security Building negotiations are a ray of hope for downtown. Future is related to the disposable income of downtown residents. I can understand the frustration, This is a very difficult crisis. The PBID is needed to make this work.

Mayor Flynn declared  a 15 minute recess while PBID owners ballots are counted/tabulated.

The weighted vote results were approved by owners at 79.76%, much higher than last time.

Council voted 7-0 to accept this.

 

I-2- Planning & Zoning (PZ) Permit Numbers 18-620-01 (General Plan Amendment), 18-580-01 (Zone Text Amendment), and 18-570-02 (Zone Change) – The Downtown Code and Removal of Conditional Downtown East Transit Oriented District Urban Village Designation.
(20/20/20)

This discussion is for both I-1 and I-2″

Director Lambert told us that this is also needed to facilitate downtown Oxnard redevelopment. He lamented previous endless studies but no real action. The urban village charette exercise was instrumental in shaping the code changes. Plans- arts hub, tree trimming, streets, parkletts, etc. Had multiple stakeholder meetings. Changed zoning, architectural guidelines. Avoided some of the problems experienced by Ventura when they did it.

The downtown redevelopment area was extended. Each area has a theme. The downtown “edge” is a transitional zone, more pedestrian oriented than today, residential with limited commercial. The downtown general area is more dense, 85′ height, more commercial and mixed use, pedestrian oriented, 12′ 1st floor height. The downtown core has 120 ft (10-12 stories) maximum height, can build to property line, 16′ ground floor height. Reduced parking requirements (uh-oh). They claimed parking is now underutilized, but so is downtown. They claim they will provide “multi-modal access.” Will put in a new parking structure when necessary.

Will utilize a streamlined permit process (as long as application meets guidelines), by staff and director. (Does this cut out the Planning Commission and Council?).

1,118 housing units, 481K ft comercial planned. No dwelling unit minimum size.

“Block form” dimensioning will be implemented (see illustrations in agenda materials). Some variety of acceptable styles. Quality architecture emphasized.

The transit-oriented district (just east of downtown) will be dropped as impractical, with development emphasis all on downtown instead. Planning commission approved this with some changes in June.

Public Comments

Gary Blum- Oxnard Downtowners and Heritage Square Supt- Dynamic process, plenty of opportunities offered for changes, but many were watered down- He understands the politics of that. Concerned about styles- don’t want craftsman. Want more traditional in downtown core, developers want something quick and cheap, but should blend with historic buildings, This is not Seabridge. Getting pushback on this.

Roy Prince- Charette was important to this effort. Urges vote for proposal , but traditional style should be the preferred style. Re: side yard setbacks- Not needed. How about paseos and passageways? Gaps between buildings are now 0-10′. Wider is not so “walkable.” Community Development Director can override setback code without extra permits.

Jacqueline Pellino- With Cabrillo Economic Development Corp. In favor of new code.

Aurellio Acompo- Oxnard Community Planning Group and board member of CNU planning. Re: Traditional style only in core area preferred. He says it conveys charm and historic connection. 2016 community charette emphasized this. Contemporary OK (like Venice, CA), but if we allow that, it clashes. Plaza Park/core especially should have traditional architectural style.

Pat Brown- Wants all buildings up against each other as if it was all one building. Don’t want to see driveways with big spaces for trash, dumpsters, etc. Put it in alleys behind buildings. Clean up area. No homeless campsites on sidewalk.Want housing above ground floor businesses.

Abel Magama- (Downtown District Director)- Thanks for support in approving PBID (Downtown District charter and assessments). Make downtown attractive to help bring in new development. Want walkability/places to visit. Preference for traditional architecture sounds reasonable. Older Oxnard Blvd buildings are nice- a place in time. Setbacks sound reasonable.

Tia Estrada- Here since 1936. 1964 was first “redevelopment.” Tore down beautiful buildings. Had “western motif.”  Had a wood plank boardwalk. All were torn down and replaced with “crackerbox” buildings. Trash containers now an eyesore. She built a beautiful trash enclosure with Spanish tiles. Small (25′) buildings have inadequate parking in back on 5th.

Council/Staff Comments

Jeff Lambert- Side setbacks: Code says zero or 10′. Setbacks must have purpose. Architectural style- of our time. Don’t want to emulate 50 year old buildings. Want to make sure we build architectural style of the present, but will consider others. Old styles will look fake and may not even be safe.

Madrigal- 4th time we’ve seen a downtown redev presentation. Q: slide 17-18 map- North of A and 1st. What was it originally? A: just the zoning map. Madrigal: Side yard setbacks are a haven for bad things. Wouldn’t you be able to do a side yard setback at your discretion? A: if so, Council must review. Near Bank of A Levy is a nice example of a Paseo- an active space.

Basua- Thanks for clarifying on traditional architecture. Alos want modern. Is side yard setback discretionary? A: if 0′ or ten, no additional approval is needed. Exceptions go to Planning Commission.

Ramirez- Thanks for bringing this to us. Theoretically we could have 10′ and 10′ side yards= 20′? A: Yes. Post office was cited as best downtown example of traditional architecture. Ramirez- ca we make traditional preferred? Concerned about setbacks and break in the flow of buildings. A: we will show example sketches.

MacDonald- Ultimate height of 12 stories might be a little too high. Prefers mid-rise. Would like architecture reflective of history of the community. Likes his 103 year old house. Riverpark (new) is OK too. Would any current allowances be forbidden in the future? A: Don’t have info to answer, but most of what’s there should be adequate.  MacDonald fears that grandfatering could be lost in some circumstances. A: Ashley Golden says there are some 30 days and 6 month expirations. MacDonald sees a problem with only 30 days.

Perello- Opinions: “Historical” architecture,”traditional”- I am not versed in this, but I want it done right. 12 stories is surprising. Any problems with the airport there? Will short term rentals be allowed? Wanted two more questions. Mayor said one question and I am running this meeting. It got contentious. Perello- any plan to incorporate waterless urinals downtown?  Smell outside in downtown is terrible (homeless). Setbacks will be active ones- good design will meet needs of community. Perello concerned about those paces being used poorly.

Lopez- Re: setbacks- If there are a number of setbacks, can additional ones be denied? A: yes. Lopez- Like recommendations for styles. Long term- contemporary may not outlive vision. Supports traditional as preferred in core area with possible alternatives.

Flynn- How will downtown be different from the Collection? Must be different. Embrace traditional style- clarify what that means. Can we come up with a list of traditional styles? A: 6 now identified. Does not include contemporary. City Mgr please address spaces between buildings.

Nguyen- avoid overprescribing when addressing styles. Commercial interests may be affected . Demand great architecture, but remain open-minded. New, imaginative and different is always contested. Don’t let the current homeless crisis manage redevelopment. Residences in downtown will change the dynamics. Do anything but what the Collection is- create a genuine downtown.

Flynn. Lambert-issues ae setback and architectural style. Council, are you comfortable with setback rules.?

Ramirez- Want preference for traditional style, which would not exclude other ones. Re setbacks- zero unless it would be used in a beautiful way. Ashley Golden- already codified as such (page 13, footnote 1).

The vote involved changing two very complex ordinances plus dropping the transportation zone. Most of the council members freely admitted that they do not understand the intricacies of the code and architecture involved but get the general idea (MacDonald: “I’m sitting here like a deer in a headlight”). Also concerned about lengthy permit delays. Council did state a preference for traditional and zero setback.

Vote 7-0 to approve

 

M-1- Approval of Agreement with the Oxnard Union High School District Regarding Future Civic Center Act Use of Specific Portions of New High School to be Constructed on 51.8 Acres of the 107-acre Maulhardt Property Located on the Northeast Corner of Rose Avenue and Camino del Sol; Approval of Agreement with Members of Maulhardt Family Regarding Mitigation of Park Requirements Upon the Subsequent Development of Remainder of Maulhardt Property. (10/10/10)
RECOMMENDATION: That the City Council approve and authorize the Mayor to sign on the
City’s behalf two agreements relating to the 107-acre project known as the East Village
Development Project (Maulhardt Property):
1. Agreement Between Oxnard Union High School District and City of Oxnard for Community Use
of Facilities; and
2. Agreement Affecting Real Property (Agreement for Mitigation of Park Requirements).
Legislative Body: City Council
Contact: Jeffrey Lambert, (805) 385-7882

Director Lambert made the presentation. He said that Atty Rozelle helped prepare documents.

Parks and frontage features were expanded from the last proposal, at the request of the Council. Future development would require reviews. Want agreement with the school district for facilities usage and another for improvements

Public Comments

Pat Brown- Was formerly saying that we don’t need another high school. Has changed mind. Rose Ave should be widened. Want a bed and breakfast there.

Keith Valdez- Maulhardt family should be committed to dividing property- one half for school district, one half for parks. There’s another property 2 blocks away. Change hours.Currently conflicts with high school hours.

Council Comments

Lopez- Agreement is to 2065? A: 2059 and can be extended.

Perello- Was 7 acres of parks. Who will take possession of the farmhouse? I’m totally opposed to city taking possession- like a boat, with continued high expenses. Why isn’t soccer field listed. Sale of properties could finance farm house. Didn’t like it when HS Supt. came to council and took us on. A: (from atty Rozelle): Farmhouse would be given to city or its designee. Sports groups could rent out facilities during designated times.

MacDonald- Does that agreement apply to the barn also? A: Our agreement focused on the house. Ken Hyde- Maulhardt atty- Done in context with school district agreement. barn is right on the border line. Barn is structurally unsound. Not viable for public use, but could be rebuilt using existing materials. Do it entirely on school property.  Requires a demolition permit under city jurisdiction. House is usable and can be reconditioned.  MacDonald-= sounds like a huge investment.  Not a fan of joint use parks, so he likes the new proposal, plus the right to rent school properties.

Ramirez- this is quite an improvement over last version. City can’t take on thebarn project. Wish some other entity could take it on. City will not be obligated

Basua- Supports proposal, thanks for extra park acreage.

Madrigal-  Residents enjoy use of Pacifica HS track in evenings. Will be  a performing arts center at new HS. Can nonprofits use it? With recent school bonds, a lot of fields will be (artificial?) turf. What happens if a nonprofit takes over (farm)house and fails? City is on the hook again? No on agreement with owners

Flynn- Some of my concerns have been addressed. Barn is not a stable structure. House is in better shape. Likes that barn could be moved, reconstructed. Have concerns about joint use. We have a parks shortage. Park overuse and maintenance is a concern. Very supportive of a new high school. HS’s overcrowded now Want magnet program in partnership with Rio School District.

Vote is on a Oxnard HS agreement and agreement affecting real properties. Perello- does not want city to finance house or barn project. He put it into a motion

Vote: 7-0 to approve.

 

Gary Davis, Oxnard HS District Board President thanked council for their approval. New HS will serve about 2500 students, starting in 2022. Lauded Oxnard/School District partnerships, including internships, safety officers and more,

 

M-2- Homeless Programs Update and Shelter Agreement. (20/20/20)
RECOMMENDATION: That the City Council:
1. Receive and file a homeless program update;
2. Waive the City’s land use regulations to permit the use of the National Guard Armory as a 24-
hour a day shelter through December 31, 2019;
3. Authorize the Mayor to execute Professional Services Agreement A-8143 with Mercy House to
provide homeless shelter services; and
4. Approve a $1,500,000 budget appropriation in Homeless Emergency Aid Program (HEAP) grant
funding from the State and Local Grant Fund (219) to Shelter Operations and Downtown Pilot
Efforts.
Legislative Body: City Council
Contact: Emilio Ramirez, (805) 385-8094

Mr Ramirez made the presentation of the current status and request for funds for homeless projects activities. Mark Alvarado and Carl Lawson run the homeless team.  Homeless  Commission led by Peggy Rivera  is part of the team. Team has succeeded in putting together  a complete 5 year plan with 8 goals, he informed us.

Mercy House will convert the shelter to year round overnight shelter and run it.Other service providers will be involved. County of Ventura provides a series of vital services. He says the impact on neighbors is minimal. Will be offering services downtown to improve life for Homeless there. 32 service providers brainstormed a pilot plan and did an assessment. Want to provide services inplace to downtown without moving them to another encampment. He says that there are 42 people in Plaza park and more elsewhere downtown. Must bring in services, housing vouchers, mental health and other services. Will work with OPD and City Atty to repurpose/clear Plaza Park. Want tenant-based program rent vouchers for homeless.

Need a longer term permanent site to replace the armory. Mercy House (now called the “Navigation Center” is the operator. 25 employees trained, including 4 navigators.

Need $964,000 appropriation to operate shelter for 6 months.

Partnership with the County is good and will be expanded.

Seeking new shelter location.  Collaborating with faith-based community. Nonprofit service providers are amazing.

Need model ordinances (for dealing with getting the homeless off the streets). Mr. Emilio Ramirez previously talked to us offline about the legalities of doing this. It is complex. He purports to and seems to understand what is involved and could be valuable in advising Council/City Mgr./City Atty on how to do this. Mr. Ramirez is an (non-practicing) attorney himself.

Must be sure that Oxnard is ready for funding when state budget comes through, which will total about a billion dollars. Currently only the top thirteen cities are getting funding from this. Oxnard trying to change that, with help from legislators.

Wants to enact a “Housing First” strategy. Need sites for construction, such as 5th and K and others. Assumes that case management will be more successful if people are in housing units instead of, say, the park.

Note- There is some confusion about the Housing First strategy. Some thought that he meant put homeless in permanent housing first before anything else. But, when I spoke with Director Ramirez and Homeless effort leader Mark Alvarado this week, they made it quite clear that it just mean getting a roof over their heads first, whether that be a detox center, sober living or just a shelter- any good roof. They acknowledged that most homeless are not in a position to manage a household, let alone pay for one. Ramirez envisions some sort of multi-unit living center with on site management suitable for providing day to day support, with specialized support services brought in as required.

 

Partnership

HOUSING DEPARTMENT
Housing Authority
Affordable Housing
Grants Management
Fair Housing
Rent Stabilization
Homeownership
Resident Services

 

Public Comments

Peggy Rivera (Homelessness Commission Chair.- Please with progress since Emilio Ramirez became Housing Director. recommends passage of all 4 proposals. A long time coming. Need to have funds available when location is found

Mike Petit- asst CEO, Ventura County- Want permanent shelter location. Commend council/city leaders for structured homeless program.

Nick O’Connell- Vice Chair, Homelessness Commission- Supports armory shelter. Good sense of community/responsibility at the shelter. Minala disruption to surrounding neighborhood. Commend Housing Dept- Mark, Carl and staff-  for work and to Emilio Ramirez.

Keith Valdez- The Rescue Mission on 6 St houses 100 (they told us 48) and serves the best institutional food around. Armory shelter does too.

Council Comments

Lopez- Shelter contract is to December 31? A: Emilio- we seek another site. Can’t guarantee it will be ready by January 1.  Current grant is $1.5 mm to be spent by July 1, 2020. May need more H.E.A.P. funds. Lopez- will we be competing for funds? A: yes. There will be two shelters, Oxnard and Ventura. County will help support both.

Perello- Shelter residents help/police each other. Is there a commission meeting schedule? What about pets? Do they have rabies shots? A; yes. To Mr. Petit/VC- hope we can wok on abroad front of items. Petit: We appreciate.

MacDonald- I have slightly different concerns. I haven’t lost compassion, I lost patience. I just saw a homeless person sleeping near parking stall. Why aren’t such people in the shelter? They are impeding events at Plaza Park. I’m not fond of our property being taken over. Homeless are wandering into local businesses and even taking things. Need to help folks with their demons, but how do we get them to the services they need. Some not willing. How do you incentivize  them to do so. Want solution instead of ongoing complaints. How do we get service resistant people into services. Many broken downtown plate glass windows. Invoked “broken window” theory.I’m not willing to allow people to make an area so unpleasant that it keeps people out. Lie the program, but how do we get to the next level.

 

Ramirez- support the program. Shelter was very well run, should get even better with Mercy House. Where do we get the resources for housing/shelters. Need community support to allow into their areas. Encampments atr Ormond Beach are a big problem. making progress., slow, bad things are happening., Will take more than the city- also public-private partnerships.

Basua- Totally on board with helping homeless, getting needed resources. Not moving quick enough for me. Why is ok to trash our city and why residents can’t go and enjoy their parks, and why we can’t go faster. It is really hard for me to walk my neighborhood. this is not working for me. We have a no camping ordinance. Why aren’t we enforcing it, Ventura is doing it great.Why allow camping in Plaza Park, Ormond beach, NOT acceptable to me. Got to maintain a living environment for the erst of our community.

Madrigal- a very expensive process. Expensive to live in SoCal. A few bad individuals give all a bad name. Many are one decision away from being homeless. Saw an ex student now homeless. You can camp out at city hall in Thousand Oaks. It’s legal, but they are not. But they are here. Why? We need to approve this . We have no other choice.

Flynn- there is irony. I have never seen more progress on this issue, but it is falling short of council/community’s expectations. The Boise decision etc. affect this. I advocate City Manager approach. I don’t believe we have 6 or 9 months. We maye have to use set aside money. We have only been baby sitting and pushing people around. Must place people where they need to be placed. If they continue to refuse people, maybe that  have to go to jail. Council will have to do something in the interim even more aggressive/ We have room for 125  people., Have 575+ homeless. (What about other facilities?).  May have to use Measure O money and moer to get every homeless person off the street in 6 moths. Even half would be a big improvement.

Alex Nguyen- Reaching a tipping point. Change in the language in complaints coming to city Hall. this is not something city created, not something happening only in Oxnard.  State is not providing funding all cities need to adres day to day crisis. State money has mainly been for housing. Only 13 cities getting that. Appeaked to Governor to make it available for more cities. Know how to address issues. Simply don’t have the dollars. Only have a hundred beds, but 600 homeless. Need family reunification program to send home – not to a different country (referring to deportations, to audience laughter), but to their families. Need to get aggressive. It’s not going to be pleasant. We need to figure out where folks are to go at whatever level they are ready.

Emilio Ramirez- Can’t guarantee this problem will be solved in 6 months. Homeless  are our clients (then what are the other residents?).

Councilwoman- I’m impacted by this every day. Nothing gets done with small encampments. We wait until it’s out  of control. Agrees with McDonald’s broken window idea.

Emilio Ramirez- will bring a street outreach team with H.E.A.P. (grant)  funds. We identified a homeless person. Mark (Alvarado) talked to him for two hours and got him immediate help.

This is what was actually voted on:

1. Receive and file a homeless program update;
2. Waive the City’s land use regulations to permit the use of the National Guard Armory as a 24-
hour a day shelter through December 31, 2019;
3. Authorize the Mayor to execute Professional Services Agreement A-8143 with Mercy House to
provide homeless shelter services; and
4. Approve a $1,500,000 budget appropriation in Homeless Emergency Aid Program (HEAP) grant
funding from the State and Local Grant Fund (219) to Shelter Operations and Downtown Pilot
Efforts.

Vote- approved 7-0

 

See details


George Miller is Publisher/Co-Founder of CitizensJournal.us and a “retired” operations management consultant residing in Oxnard

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One Response to Oxnard Council Approves More Homeless Action/$, Downtown Code/Redev. Architecture; Maulhardt HS/Parks Project Advances

  1. Tom July 20, 2019 at 8:15 am

    The city council meeting on July 16 was not available on Local TV because of technical problems.

    The city council meeting on July 2 was not available at oxnard.org because of technical problems.

    The index of city council videos is still not working.

    How many future city jobs will be lost because the council added the “Living Wage” clause to the golf course contract despite the staff’s recommendation against it? A city crossing guard earns between $9.22 and $14.31 per hour. The minimum wage for the golf course contractor employee is $16.19 instead of the California minimum wage of $12.00 per hour. Why should the city subsidize the wages of a private contractor’s employees while denying the city’s employees the same benefit?

    Reply

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