Santa Paula Times

Council to address infrastructure needs, monument, livable communities

December 13, 2006
Santa Paula City Council

The newly installed City Council got down to business at Monday’s meeting, at least when it came to discussing future agenda items.

By Peggy KellySanta Paula TimesThe newly installed City Council got down to business at Monday’s meeting, at least when it came to discussing future agenda items.“We know the wastewater treatment plant is long in coming as far as the need of a new facility,” said Councilman Bob Gonzales, who requested “a report that identifies different items, extensive and expensive, that will have as large as an impact” as the plant. “I know we’ve talked about a new City Hall facility, but I’m more concerned with the internal workings of the city and those items that can come back and bite us,” such as the potential $70-million cost of a new sewer plant.“My recollection of the wastewater treatment plant is that we put Band-Aids on it and then it was shelved a number of years ago, not just eight to 10 years ago.” Gonzales noted that he would like a “planning process to address these issues.”“I hope that the Council looks at broader goals in the next month or two” that can be submitted for the annual goal setting and priority projects list, said City Manager Wally Bobkiewicz. “We can make a goal setting item, but I don’t want anything overlooked that might be a significant impact” in the future, noted Gonzales. Another item Gonzales asked be agendized is the creation of a memorial “for two gentlemen of Santa Paula who have given their lives in service to the law enforcement,” an issue that Gonzales said he has discussed with Bobkiewicz and Mayor Ray Luna. “I think it’s been neglected for at least 50 years,” he added.
Councilman Dr. Gabino Aguirre also had a request: “One thing that I have observed is there is not a real clear vision about where to go as a community in terms of development.” Aguirre asked that a future Council discussion center on a series of workshops to address “livable communities.”Gonzales asked for clarification as to whether there is any relation to the workshops recently held at the Community Center. “I want to really engage the community, provide a basic understanding about what livable communities are all about,” so that the Council and the community can be “on the same page,” noted Aguirre.“Would such workshops be led by someone on the Council or a consultant or staff? What are you proposing?” asked newly installed Councilman Ralph Fernandez.“I am proposing a discussion by the Council” so the issue can be addressed, said Aguirre, who noted that a lack of community consensus, “how to go about planning the future for our community,” had been a campaign issue. “It’s very important to me and the community in general.”When Gonzales asked for clarification, Vice Mayor John Procter noted that future agenda items are “not debatable... we have a tendency to go through the whole thing and start deliberating, and we’re not allowed to do that.”Luna noted that he and Gonzales had discussed safe routes to schools, “seeing what other cities are doing,” and what options Santa Paula might have. “Clarification,” said Gonzales, who asked if Luna was discussing traffic patterns. Luna confirmed that he would like a discussion of traffic patterns as a future agenda item.