Climate-related issues are taking center stage at this week’s Cloverdale City Council meeting. At its regular meeting this Wednesday, April 28, the Cloverdale City Council will be viewing two presentations about fire safety, and will be holding a public hearing to consider a resolution declaring a Stage 2 Water Shortage Emergency, mandating water conservation measures. Additionally, the council will review proposed solutions for leash law violations and dangerous dog enforcement. Open session of the council meeting begins at 6 p.m. Attendees can watch the meeting either on Zoom or on the city’s YouTube page. For the full council agenda, which includes a link to the Zoom, click here.
During closed session, the council is scheduled to have a conference with its legal counsel about existing litigation pertaining to the county of Sonoma v. Pacific Gas and Electric Company, as well as a conference with property negotiators over Lot B of the city’s Thyme Square property on South Cloverdale Boulevard.
On the consent calendar, the council is considering the following items:
● Approving the meeting minutes of its April 14 meeting
● Receive and file housing successor agency report for fiscal year 2019-20
● Resolution awarding the Cloverdale 2nd Street Park renovations project to M3, Inc in the amount of $49,340 and authorize a budget amendment for a budget total of $54,274
● Appointment of Melissa Spingler to the Planning Commission as an alternate member with a term expiration of April 2023.
Proclamations and presentations
The council will be issuing two proclamations at its meeting this week — one declaring April 11-17 as National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week and another declaring May 2-8 as Municipal Clerks Week.
The council will also be receiving a presentation from the Cloverdale Fire Protection District on safe fire practices and a separate presentation from Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) about its community wildfire safety program. PG&E’s presentation will cover its Public Safety Power Shutoffs, customer support programs, as well as other fire-related issues, like the importance of creating defensible space around a home.
How are drought conditions impacting Cloverdale?
With local drought conditions worsening — including Gov. Gavin Newsom declaring a drought in Sonoma and Mendocino counties — Cloverdale’s director of public works will be presenting to the council on current drought conditions and the impact drought conditions have on the city’s water supply. Along with the presentation, the council will be holding a public hearing to consider declaring a Stage 2 Water Shortage Emergency.
Once a water shortage emergency is declared, the following water uses are declared as nonessential:
● Any residential use (excluding irrigation only use) in excess of that resulting from application of the mandatory residential rationing requirement established by the Cloverdale city council.
● Any irrigation only use in excess of that resulting from application of the mandatory irrigation rationing requirement established by the Cloverdale city council.
● Any nonresidential use (excluding irrigation only use and healthcare and public safety use) in excess of that resulting from application of the overall mandatory rationing requirement established by the Cloverdale city council.
● Any water used for healthcare and public safety (excluding irrigation only use) in excess of the minimum amount required to adequately provide for healthcare and public safety.
● Any use of water from a fire hydrant except for fighting fires, human consumption, stock water, essential flushing and cleanup purposes and water used for construction needs. If the overall mandatory rationing requirement is equal to or greater than twenty-five percent, a permit issued by the city engineer shall be required for all hydrant use except for water used for fighting fires or for other emergency use deemed essential by the fire chief.
● Watering of any existing turf grass, ornamental plant, garden, landscaped area, trees, shrubs or other plants except from a hand-held hose or container or drip irrigation system except as provided in Section 13.05.070.
● Watering of new turf grass or replacement turf grass. If the overall mandatory rationing requirement is equal to or greater than twenty-five percent, this restriction is extended and applies to watering of any new landscape or replacement landscape except in cases where the replacement landscapes will use less water than the original landscape.
● Initial filling of any swimming pool for which approval of a construction permit issued by the city was made after the date on which the initial water shortage emergency condition was originally declared to exist.
● Use for service of drinking water at any restaurant, cafe, cafeteria or other public place where food is sold, served or offered for sale, unless expressly requested by a patron.
According to the council agenda item, the city engineer is recommending a reduction of water consumption citywide by 20-30% from 2020 levels.
What about leash laws?
Following increasing complaints from Cloverdale community members about lack of enforcement of the city’s leash laws, the council has added a discussion to its agenda about leash law violations and enforcement pertaining to dangerous dogs. City staff is presenting the council with multiple options when it comes to ways it can increase enforcement of the city’s leash laws.
● Potentially equipping the city’s community services officer with the necessary training to be able to issue citations regarding animal control
● Increasing public messaging and education about leash laws and enforcement
● Increasing the terms of the city’s animal control contract with North Bay Animal Control Services to include leash law enforcement, dangerous dog identification, bite investigations and animal impounds (which would be a cost of $48,000 per year at $4,000 per month)
● Pursuing a multi-year contract with North Bay Animal Services for full animal control services, Tuesday through Saturday, 24 hours a day for four years (with the cost being $27,436 for the first year, $28,880 for the second year,$30,400 for the third year and $32,000 for the fourth year)