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Cerritos City Council Meeting Minutes

MINUTES OF A REGULAR MEETING OF THE
CITY COUNCIL OF THE CITY OF CERRITOS
HELD JULY 9, 2009

CALL TO ORDER

The meeting was called to order at 7:00 p.m. in the Council Chambers at Cerritos City Hall, 18125 Bloomfield Avenue, Cerritos, California.

INVOCATION

Pastor Bill Ebling with the First Evangelical Church of Fullerton offered the invocation.

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

Rea Karahashi, Deana Chou, Caled Chen and Clarence Chen led the assembly in the salute to the flag and Boy Scout Troop 394 posted the Colors.

ROLL CALL

The following Members of the City Council were in attendance:

Councilwoman Carol Chen
Councilman Jim Edwards
Councilwoman Laura Lee
Mayor Pro Tem Joseph Cho, Ph.D.
Mayor Bruce W. Barrows

PRESENTATIONS

Eleanor Dykstra was presented with a proclamation upon her retirement from Valley Christian High School after 38 years of service.

CONSIDERATION OF APPOINTMENTS TO VACANCIES ON VARIOUS COMMISSIONS, BOARDS AND COMMITTEES

MOTION:  It was moved by Councilwoman Chen and seconded by Councilwoman Lee to confirm the appointment of Chuong Vo to the Community Safety Committee.  The motion carried unanimously.

The City Clerk then administered the oath to Mr. Vo.

With concurrence of the City Council, the following item was taken out of order.

NEW AND OLD BUSINESS

Consideration of an informational report relating to information submitted by the Environmental Protection Agency and the South Coast Air Quality Management District as it pertains to air quality issues.

City Manager Gallucci commented on the City's response to the air quality issues raised two weeks ago, noting that special counsel and an environmental consultant had been hired to assist in addressing this matter.

Julia C. Lester, PhD, Environ Corp., referenced her background and experience and outlined the tasks associated with the review and assistance to be provided to the City, including an independent critical review of the National Air Toxics Assessment (NATA), noting preliminary findings that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) report has very large errors with regard to emissions and facility location; an independent review of any follow-on work by South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD), USEPA and the State Air Resources Board; assist the City with discussions with the USEPA, SCAQMD or the State Resources Board; assist the City with public policy and outreach challenges; and perform independent monitoring to answer City specific questions related to the 2002 NATA.

Dr. Anupom Ganguli, SCAQMD, referenced a July 9, 2009 SCAQMD press release, which indicated that results of air monitoring tests conducted the last week of June 2009 for the presence of hydrazine from the Santa Fe Springs Heraeus Metal Processing Plant, which utilizes a closed system, show that it does not pose a significant cancer risk to the surrounding community.  He added that of the three samples taken two were non-detectable for the presence of hydrazine with less than two pounds per year of hydrazine is currently emitting from the facility, which would result in a maximum lifetime cancer risk in the community of 0.5 in one million, and is 20 times lower than the threshold for public notification, 10 in one million, and 50 times lower than the threshold for reducing toxic emission and health risk, 25 in one million, not the 1250 pounds per year or 1244 in one million that was reported by the EPA.  Dr. Ganguli indicated that NATA appears to contain outdated information, noting that SCAQMD officials now are trying to determine if the facility ever emitted that much hydrazine, and that based on the facility's operations history, its actual emission in 2002, and possibly as early as 1991, were likely similar to today's emissions of less than two pounds per year of hydrazine.  He also referenced the Multiple Air Toxics Exposure Study (MATES III) that concluded an average toxic cancer risk in Southern California of 1,200 in one million during a lifetime exposure and found that about 84 percent of the toxic cancer risk is due to diesel fuel combustion from mobile sources, pointing out that the toxic cancer risk from diesel was not included in the USEPA's NATA report.  It was noted by Dr. Ganguli that the press release was shared with the media, Los Angeles Times, and Congresswomen Grace Napolitano and Linda Sanchez.

During ensuing discussion a correction to the SCAQMD press release was noted that Cerritos is upwind from the Heraeus facility, not downwind.  It was also pointed out that there was no representative from the USEPA, which is necessary to determine why they released invalid, outdated information to the public, and the City Manager indicated that the City has been in contact and continues to communicate with the USEPA regarding its response concerning the hydrazine data, which the City has yet to receive.  Dr. Ganguli noted that a letter to USEPA suggesting a more collaborative process in the future is being prepared and Dr. Lester indicated that Environ's report would include an independent validation of how the USEPA calculation and reporting errors were made as well as the error in identifying the location of the facility.  Additional discussion followed regarding USEPA modeling studies and information that was released by the USEPA and it was requested that Dr. Lester report back with regard to the toxic cancer risk in Long Beach, downtown Los Angeles and Wilmington in addition to a comparison of the subject USEPA data and its previous data.  Further discussion continued regarding differences in State versus Federal toxic air data methodology and monitoring stations.

In response to Council inquiry, City Manager Gallucci commented on the fiscal impact of addressing this matter, which could reach $250,000 for consultants and attorneys, as well as the impact on staff time and resources.

Interested parties were invited to present testimony.

Timothy Pong, Cerritos resident, asserted that children are at risk, there is no data, and the City has no pro-active plan to address this matter.

Elsie Semonovski, Cerritos resident, expressed concern with the air quality issue and urged the City Council to continue to investigate this matter.

Paul Bellenbaum, Cerritos resident, indicated that Cerritos has many trees that help improve air quality.

MOTION:  It was moved by Mayor Barrows and seconded by Mayor Pro Tem Cho to authorize a budget allocation of up to $250,000 to address the air quality issue.  The motion carried unanimously.

CONSENSUS:  Following confirmation that a town hall meeting on the air quality issue would be held in the future, there was consensus to send a letter to residents from the Mayor pertaining to the air quality issue, and to place the air quality issue on the agenda for the next City Council meeting.

The regular order of the agenda was resumed.

PUBLIC COMMENTS AND SUGGESTIONS

Jerry Jenson, Cerritos resident, noted he was a victim of investment fraud and indicated that he is scheduled to speak on fraud prevention at the Cerritos Senior Center on July 15 at 1:00 p.m.

CONSENT CALENDAR

Approval of Register of Demands

MOTION:  It was moved by Councilman Edwards and seconded by Mayor Pro Tem Cho to approve the Register of Demands dated July 9, 2009, Checks 109552 through 109831, in the total amount of $8,690,826.33.  The motion carried unanimously.

Approval of Treasurer's Report

MOTION:  It was moved by Councilman Edwards and seconded by Mayor Pro Tem Cho to approve the Treasurer's Report for the period ending May 31, 2009.  The motion carried unanimously.

Approval of Minutes

MOTION:  It was moved by Councilman Edwards and seconded by Mayor Pro Tem Cho to approve the Minutes of the Regular Meeting of June 25, 2009.  The motion carried unanimously.

PUBLIC HEARINGS

A proposal by J. T. Nakaoka Associates Architects on behalf of Forever 21 and the property owner, Macerich Cerritos, LLC, 401 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 700, Santa Monica, California, 90401-1452, for an exterior remodel of the former Mervyn’s department store building located at 200 Los Cerritos Center.  The subject site is zoned Regional Commercial (CR), and is located within the Los Cerritos Redevelopment Project Area (APN 7038-014-014).

Cerritos Redevelopment Agency Conformity Report 2009-3

Precise Plan 2009-7*

*Pursuant to Section 15301 of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), this project is categorically exempt.

Title was read to the foregoing public hearing item, the public hearing opened, and staff report presented.

During ensuing discussion concern was expressed with regard to continued operation and maintenance of the proposed illuminated glass panel façade as well as prohibition of advertisements as part of the illuminated glass.  Following discussion, the following modification to Condition 52 was presented:

Modify Condition 52

"Illuminated Glass Panels. The illuminated glass panels shall be permitted to display subtle and gradual color transitions subject to the on-site approval by Macerich Cerritos, LLC ("Landlord") and the Department of Community Development. The glass panels and the illumination equipment shall be maintained in excellent condition at all times. If any portion of the system is damaged it shall be repaired or replaced within twenty-four (24) hours. Should any repairs require a longer time for completion the Community Development Department shall be notified as to the reason and to the time required for completion. The use of the referenced glass panels for the display of graphics or advertisement shall be prohibited. may be permitted on a temporary basis and only in conjunction with a special sales event. The use of referenced glass panels for the display of special holiday colors may be permitted on a temporary basis subject to the issuance of a Temporary Use Permit (TUP) in accordance with the provisions of the Cerritos Municipal Code."

Interested parties were invited to present testimony.

James Nakaoka, J.T. Nakaoka Associates Architects, 10390 Santa Monica Boulevard, Los Angeles, discussed the particulars of the operation and materials for the proposed white translucent laminated glass panel system along the west elevation of the building, noting that technology would preclude display advertisements on the glass, and he commented on the safety aspects of the illumination in this area of the shopping center.  He addressed the ease of maintenance of the proposed cement board panels and reviewed the entrance façade remodel.  Mr. Nakaoka indicated intent to contribute to the art in public places trust fund in lieu of an art piece and concurred with the modification to the conditions of approval.

Kirsten Nagel, Marketing Manager of Forever 21, spoke in support of the proposal.

PUBLIC HEARINGS

There were no other speakers and the public hearing was closed.

MOTION:  It was moved by Mayor Pro Tem Cho and seconded by Councilwoman Chen that the City Council:

A.        Receive and file Cerritos Redevelopment Agency Conformity Report 2009-3; and

B.         Approve Precise Plan 2009-7, making the findings set forth in Cerritos Planning Commission Resolution No. PC 2009-27, including the modification to Condition 52 as noted during the public hearing;

and as recommended in the staff report dated July 9, 2009.  The motion carried unanimously.

PENDING LEGAL MATTERS

Ordinance for consideration

Consideration to waive reading of and introduce AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF CERRITOS AMENDING TITLE 8 OF THE CERRITOS MUNICIPAL CODE BY ADDING CHAPTER 8.13 TO ESTABLISH REGULATIONS FOR EXCESSIVE DOG BARKING.

Ken Husting, Cerritos resident, discussed his neighbor's barking dogs and supported the adoption of the proposed ordinance.

MOTION:  It was moved by Mayor Pro Tem Cho and seconded by Councilman Edwards to waive reading of and introduce Ordinance No. 949 entitled AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF CERRITOS AMENDING TITLE 8 OF THE CERRITOS MUNICIPAL CODE BY ADDING CHAPTER 8.13 TO ESTABLISH REGULATIONS FOR EXCESSIVE DOG BARKING.  The motion carried by the following vote:

AYES:             Councilmembers – Chen, Edwards, Lee, Cho, Barrows

NOES:             Councilmembers – None

ABSENT:        Councilmembers – None

ABSTAIN:       Councilmembers – None

Consideration of a memorandum of understanding between the City of Cerritos and the City of Los Angeles for the Recovery Act Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) Program Award.

MOTION:  It was moved by Councilwoman Lee and seconded by Councilman Edwards to approve the MOU titled "Memorandum of Understanding Between Jurisdictions and the City of Los Angeles Recovery Act Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) Program Award"; and authorize the Mayor to sign all necessary documentation on behalf of the City of Cerritos; as recommended in the staff report dated July 9, 2009.  The motion carried unanimously.

Consideration of amendment to agreement between the City of Lakewood and the City of Cerritos for reimbursement for helicopter patrol services for the period of July 1, 2009 through June 30, 2014.

MOTION:  It was moved by Councilwoman Lee and seconded by Councilwoman Chen to approve the amendment to agreement for reimbursement for helicopter patrol services from July 1, 2009 through June 30, 2014; and authorize the Mayor to sign the amendment to agreement for reimbursement for helicopter patrol services; as recommended in staff report dated July 9, 2009.  The motion carried unanimously.

Consideration of a report on the Nixle communications service.

General discussion was held regarding communicating with residents in emergencies and the various technologies emerging for this purpose as well as concerns associated with the marketing of resident data by companies that provide communications services of this type.

Kenneth Cha, Cerritos resident, spoke in support of the Nixle communications service, suggesting the City research the terms and conditions of service in addition to the guarantee/termination clauses, and use of the City's service marks.  He suggested a six-month pilot program utilizing Nixle.

MOTION:  It was moved by Mayor Barrows and seconded by Councilman Edwards to direct staff to further research different options and associated costs for providing a communications information service, and report back at the next City Council meeting or two.  The motion carried unanimously.

PENDING LEGISLATION

City Manager Gallucci indicated that staff continues to monitor the status of the State budget crisis and its potential impact on the City.

CITY COUNCIL COMMUNICATIONS/COMMITTEE REPORTS/REPORT ON MEETINGS

Councilwoman Chen reported that she attended the Eagle Scout Court of Honor for Raj Pradeep Parikh of Troop 394 at Liberty Park, the U.S. Filipino Veterans Association Annual July 4th Picnic, and the July 8 Orangeline Development Authority meeting.  She commented on the success of the City's Fourth of July Celebration.

Councilwoman Lee commented on the success of the City's July 4th Celebration and reported on her attendance at Assemblymember Tony Mendoza's June 26 Young Legislator Program graduation.

Councilman Jim Edwards referenced letters from the 1st Combat Engineer Battalion and its adoption committee expressing appreciation for the City's efforts related to the gift bag program, and he commented on the success of the City's July 4th Celebration.

Mayor Pro Tem Cho commented on the success of the City's Let Freedom Ring Celebration on July 4th and his attendance at Assemblymember Tony Mendoza's June 26 Young Legislator Program graduation.  He expressed disappointment that the USEPA

CITY COUNCIL COMMUNICATIONS/COMMITTEE REPORTS/REPORT ON MEETINGS

representative did not keep his promise to provide the information he requested at the last meeting with regard to the air quality issue and noted his anticipation of the fact finding efforts so that a retraction can be made and the City can recover its reputation.

Mayor Barrows commented on the success of the City's July 4th Program and the staff follow-up of the air quality issue.

CLOSED SESSION

PUBLIC EMPLOYEE PERFORMANCE EVALUATION PURSUANT TO CALIFORNIA GOVERNMENT CODE SECTION 54957 AND LABOR NEGOTIATIONS WITH UNREPRESENTED EMPLOYEES PURSUANT TO CALIFORNIA GOVERNMENT CODE SECTION 54957.6

Title:   City Manager

Agency Designated Representative:           
Art Gallucci

Agency Designated Representatives:         
Mayor Bruce W. Barrows and Mayor Pro Tem Joseph Cho, Ph.D.

CONSIDERATION OF SALARY AND COMPENSATION ADJUSTMENTS FOR CITY CHARTER EMPLOYEES

There was no closed session held and staff was directed to place these items on the July 23, 2009 agenda.

ADJOURNMENT

The meeting adjourned at 10:45 p.m.

/s/Josephine Triggs                   
Josephine Triggs, City Clerk
 

ATTEST:

/s/Bruce Barrows                     
Bruce Barrows, Mayor

 

Approved:  July 23, 2009

 

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