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Cerritos City Council Meeting Minutes

MINUTES OF A JOINT SPECIAL MEETING OF THE CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF CERRITOS AND THE CERRITOS REDEVELOPMENT AGENCY HELD FEBRUARY 25, 2009

CALL TO ORDER

The joint special meeting of the City Council of the City of Cerritos and the Cerritos Redevelopment Agency was called to order at 6:00 p.m. at the City Council Chambers, Cerritos City Hall, 18125 Bloomfield Avenue, Cerritos, California.

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

Mayor Pro Tem/Vice Chair Barrows led the assembly in the Pledge of Allegiance.

ROLL CALL

Councilwoman/Member Carol Chen
Councilman/Member Joseph Cho, Ph.D.
Councilwoman/Member Laura Lee
Mayor Pro Tem/Vice Chair Bruce Barrows
Mayor/Chair Jim Edwards

PUBLIC COMMENTS AND SUGGESTIONS

There were no public comments.

MATTERS FOR DISCUSSION AND/OR CONSIDERATION

City of Cerritos and Cerritos Redevelopment Agency Fiscal Year 2008-2009 Mid-Year Budget and Upcoming Fiscal Year 2009-2010 Budget

City Manager/Executive Director Gallucci commented on the State's consideration of an Educational Revenue Augmentation Fund (ERAF) shift that could result in the taking of $2.5-$3 million from the City of Cerritos to the State.  He reported that the City anticipates federal earmarks for 911 technology associated with the Sheriff's Station remodel and photovoltaic technology for the Cuesta Villas affordable senior housing proposal.  Mr. Gallucci commented on the current global economic turndown affecting auto sales, the stock market, employment and foreclosures.

With regard to the 2008-2009 fiscal year budget, Mr. Gallucci reported on anticipated substantial revenue losses, including sales tax revenue and vehicle license fees, and he provided an overview of the budget including fund balances, financial history, sales tax by major business groups, fiscal position, sources of income, expenditure comparisons by departments, targeted budgetary reductions citywide, unfunded liabilities, and the water fund.

With regard to the 2009-2010 fiscal year budget, Mr. Gallucci discussed the projected fiscal position of the City/Agency; current festivals/events programming and expenses; community group assistance; recommendations to eliminate the mall safety center, payment of Artesia's share of Sky Knight, and reviewing the A group allocation for the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts as well as reducing travel to one conference per year for Commissioners and eliminating travel for staff.  He also provided a status report of the ongoing city and private sector projects within the City.

At the request of the Council/Agency, Theater Executive Director Springer elaborated on strategy associated with potentially booking 150 shows at the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts for the upcoming year.

During ensuing discussion a typographical error was noted on Page 44 of the staff report dated February 25, 2009 under Skyline Full Room, the 12/2/08 entry should read ABC Adult School, 3 hrs X $100 per/hr = $300.

Additional discussion followed regarding the recommended one-time transfer from the Water Fund to the General Fund as it relates to prepayment of other post-employment benefits, with a subsequent remaining interest earning fund balance of approximately $7.2 million; the deadline to notify the Rose Parade Association of whether or not the City would be participating in the program; clarification of housing set-aside allocation to Community Family Guidance and Su Casa; clarification that the $9 million of sales tax revenue recently received by the City of La Palma was the result of a sales tax generating business within the City of La Palma and not within the City of Cerritos; and clarification that there is a three-year window related to the use of any federal earmarks related to the Cuesta Villas housing proposal.  Further discussion was held regarding the City's reserves; potential water rate increase; and redevelopment bond payments.

Interested parties were invited to comment.

Ram Kakkar, Cerritos resident, questioned the proposed transfer from the water fund at the same time a water rate hike may be contemplated and requested a snapshot of the 2009-2010 budget.  He referenced the Shoemaker Avenue wall extension issue, asserting that the noise from traffic on Shoemaker Avenue is not in compliance with city, state and federal codes and has been a major contributing cause for his hearing impairment.  He opined that the City's claim of responsiveness to its residents is the exception to the rule.

Gail Grossman, Cerritos resident, offered the following suggestions related to the budget:  eliminate the Rose Parade float and activities unless totally underwritten by outside sources; cut back on the Mayoral transition; have Commissions meet quarterly, except the Planning and Property Preservation Commissions; eliminate meals before meetings; no conferences or related overnight stays; no Commissioner compensation; no subsidies to community organizations other than Su Casa, Community Family Guidance, Rio Hondo and possibly a few others; reduce the subsidy to the Chamber of Commerce; restrict City Council travel to two conferences; reduce the City Wide Pride event to every other year; allow only one Senior Center volunteer dinner and scale back other volunteer dinners; scale back the Fourth of July celebration hospitality area; cancel joint ventures with the ABC Unified School District unless there is an absolute safety and/or health need; no more purchases of art work unless provided by a developer or private citizen; consider how A groups are designated; and consider a fair fee for groups to use facilities.  She also discussed the benefits of recreation programs and facilities.

Bob Buell, Cerritos resident, offered positive comments regarding the budget and asserted that the Cerritos Center for the Performing Arts will eventually generate enough revenue to become financially independent.

MOTION:  With regard to Fiscal Year 2008-2009, it was moved by Mayor Pro Tem/Vice Chair Barrows and seconded by Councilwoman/Member Chen to transfer $4,201,910 from the Water Fund to the General Fund, for the water system to assume its portion of the City prepayment for other post-employment benefits (OPEB).  The motion carried unanimously.

MOTION:  With regard to Fiscal Year 2008-2009, it was moved by Councilwoman/Member Lee and seconded by Councilman/Member Cho to allocate $1.5 million of reserves to fund capital projects during 2008-2009.  The motion carried unanimously.

MOTION:  With regard to Fiscal Year 2008-2009, it was moved by Mayor Pro Tem/Vice Chair Barrows and seconded by Councilwoman/Member Chen to authorize payment to be made from Cerritos Redevelopment revenue in accordance with the State's May 10 deadline, if litigation regarding the State's proposed shift to the Educational Revenue Augmentation Fund (ERAF) is unsuccessful.  The motion carried unanimously.

MOTION:  With regard to Fiscal Year 2009-2010, it was moved by Mayor Pro Tem/Vice Chair Barrows and seconded by Councilman/Member Cho to authorize a review of the City's policy regarding community "A" groups, and provide direction to staff regarding subsidy parameters.  The motion carried unanimously.

MOTION:  With regard to Fiscal Year 2009-2010, it was moved by Mayor Pro Tem/Vice Chair Barrows and seconded by Councilman/Member Cho to authorize a review of the City's festivals and events to determine if sponsorship will continue, and to determine desired funding levels, with direction that each Commission look at those events or festivals that would be within their purview that can be combined with other programs and report back to the City Council before the Council's budget session in May, with the exception of the Rose Parade, which will be reviewed by the City Council at the first Council meeting in March.  The motion carried unanimously.

MOTION:  With regard to Fiscal Year 2009-2010, it was moved by Mayor Pro Tem/Vice Chair Barrows and seconded by Mayor/Chair Edwards to postpone a review of City contributions to charitable groups until the budget study session.  The motion carried unanimously.

ADJOURNMENT

The meeting adjourned at 7:50 p.m.

/s/Josephine Triggs             
Josephine Triggs, City Clerk

/s/Art Gallucci                                
Art Gallucci, Redevelopment Agency

ATTEST:

/s/Bruce Barrows                      ___
Bruce Barrows, Mayor/Chairman

Approved:  March 26, 2009

 

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