January 2010 Meeting Summaries


City Selection Committee:


Board of directors:

In summary, a preliminary recommendation was sent to all Santa Clara County Mayors, City/Town Managers, and the Board of Supervisors on May 4, 2009.  At the October 26, 2009 RWRC meeting, the Commission amended the previous recommendation to be:

1.      Establish a ban on plastic bags and a ban or fee on paper bags at all retailers (amount to be determined), excluding restaurants and fast food establishments.

2.      Exempt non-profit reuse stores (e.g. Good will Industries and The Salvation Army) from the ban and the fee for one year if they have a reusable bag credit program; and

3.      Adopt such an ordinance with an effective date no sooner than December 31, 2010.

The RWRC recognizes that each jurisdiction has a unique philosophy, demography, and priorities.  Recommending a ban or fee provides flexibility to jurisdictions while still providing guidance for a regional approach.  Jamie requested that the Cities Association supports the recommendations and requested that each member take them back to their own cities to consider.  The board approved the motion unanimously.

·        Sam Liccardo of San Jose presented the proposed policy on single-use carry-out bags that San Jose is considering to adopt. The proposed policy is similar to the RWRC’s recommendations and includes:

1.      Ban on plastic bags

2.      Ban on paper with less than 40% recycled content

3.      Ban or fee on paper with more than 40% recycled content

4.      Exempt non-profit reuse stores (e.g. Good will Industries and The Salvation Army) from the ban and the fee for one year if they have a reusable bag credit program.

       The policy will not go into effect before the end of this year; council is awaiting the EIR report

       and would like to see regional buy-in and is requesting the Cities Association accept San Jose’s

       policy as an acceptable way to move forward.  Public input included comments from Pete   

       Carrillo of the American Chemistry Council requesting that the Board defers action on this item

       due to the EIR not being complete and the negative impact such a policy will have on

       small/minority businesses; and Felicia Madsen of Save the Bay expressed support for the

       regional approach towards   banning single-use carryout bags due to the negative effects on the

       wildlife and water quality due to plastic in our water.  After discussion a “friendly amendment”   

       was added by Sam Liccardo: If members of the board are displeased with the result of San Jose’s

       EIR, then the board can reconsider its action of acceptance of San Jose’s policy in the future if

       necessary.  The Board accepted and supports the City of San Jose’s framework regarding the 

      reduction of single-use carryout bags with the friendly amendment.

·        Kris Wang reported that the Annual Holiday Party was a great success with 80 people attending.  Thank you to Apple Inc. for sponsoring the reception.  Other supporters from the City of Cupertino included Whole Foods, TGIF, Le Boulanger, and Blackberry Farms. 

·        Revisions to the 2010 Meeting Schedule were proposed and approved to include changes to the April and November Board of Directors Meeting.  See http://www.sccca.gov/Packet/2010%20Meeting%20Schedule.htm for revised schedule of meetings. 

·        CSC Appointee Report – Steve Tate and proxy David Sloan reported on recent and upcoming activities of the Airport Land Use Commission.  Recent Activities included updated the final draft of the Mineta A/P CLUP as S.J. State departs and included multiple changes for safety, noise, and operational needs; the placement of the Earthquakes Stadium on the FMC site was found consistent with height and noise limits; a rezoning request to locate the San Francisco 49er stadium at Tasman and Centennial in Santa Clara was found to be consistent with height, noise, and safety policies for San Jose International Airport.  Upcoming Considerations includefinal approval of the SJ Mineta A/P CLUP to be proposed for approval January or February 2010; development of a CLUP for Moffett Field with the first draft reviewed by ALUC in January 2010; review a proposal for Sky Dive operation at South County A/P.  It was questioned whether or not members from Mountain View and Sunnyvale can become eligible for Commission seats since Moffett Field is located on the boarders of Sunnyvale and Mountain View.  David responded that he will follow-up on that possibility, especially since there is a development of a CLUP for Moffett Field.   

·        City Managers’ Report – Doug Schmitz reported that city managers have been called in by the grand jury to question each of the agencies on budgets, labor contracts, personnel, and audits.  City Managers have been called in to give testimonies.  The two-tier pension plan continues and should be presented through the cities by the end of March.  There was a brief overview on the municipal regional storm water permit that went into effect on December 1, 2009.

·        Legislative Action Chair Report –HR 2847 is going through Congress, with a number of healthcare portions that may deter it from passing through the Senate and thus will probably be removed.  Joe Pirzynski updated the board on the League of California Cities ballot initiative known as “Save our Services” and it is moving forward.  The League is in the process of collecting up to 1.1 million signatures and thus far, response has been positive.  The initiative prohibits the state from taking funds used for transportation or local government projects and services.

·        Legislation Report – Betsy Shotwell reported the Governor released the state budget that proclaimed a $20 billion deficit.  There are various issues with the budget e.g. the governor’s proposal to eliminate Prop. 42, which would then impact the General Fund and then impact Prop. 98, proposal to cut state services further by $9 billion.  It is recommended to review the League of California Cities Newsletter for more information.

·        2010 Policy Priorities Discussion – President Casas presented the priorities for 2010 to include:

·   Efficiency & Effectiveness, e.g. update website, orientation packets to board members, appointment of subcommittee to review functions of the Cities Association’s reserves.

·   Review & Update of Bylaws, which were last updated in May 2006

·   A Unified Voice & Engagement in the Broader Community at both the regional and state level.

o   At the Regional Level:

·   Pension Benefit Reform

·   Economic Development

·   Collaboration with Multi-Jurisdictional Initiatives

·   ABAG Housing Allotments – Cap & Trade

·   Collaboration with Local Partnerships and Agencies, e.g. Markkula Ethics Center.

·   Highlight Community Non-Profit Organizations by including a monthly presentation.


o   At the State Level:

o   Collaboration with our Santa Clara County State Legislative Delegation

o   Collaboration with the League of California Cities through re-activation of the Legislative Action Committee

o   Collaboration with the State 


Additional priorities suggestions from the Board included water conservation, and medical marijuana ordinances.  David also noted that the re-activated Legislative Action Committee Meetings will take place immediately before the Board of Directors Meeting when needed, thus cities can either assign different members to this committee or assign the appointed board members. 


Joys and Challenges

·         Al Pinheiro reported that the City of Gilroy spent $37,000 to get an injunction and prevent a medical marijuana dispensary from selling cannabis in Gilroy.   Temporarily, the Gilroy library has moved to downtown Gilroy during the renovation of the current location. 

·         Larry Klein reported that Senators Simitian and Lowenthal are hosting a hearing about High speed Rail in the Palo Alto City Chambers on Thursday, January 21st.

·           Kathleen King reported that The Housing Trust just received $25 million of funding.

·         Joe Pirzynski announced that work on the Los Gatos library has begun and the groundbreaking is scheduled for June 21, 2010 at 7 pm. 

·         Sam Liccardo reported that the council passed the ordinance policy to enact a city-wide inclusionary housing policy, which makes San Jose the largest city in the country with a city-wide policy and will become effective in 2013.

·         Melinda announced that on January 29th is the annual studies issues workshop in which the council decides how to spend its resources.  Some of the issues being considered are medical marijuana and red light cameras.

·         David Casas updated the board on Los Altos’ grant-writing pilot program and the likelihood that their three trained grant-writers, who were trained by the Packard foundation, will also be grant-making with their CDBG funds.

·         The SCCCA Annual Membership Meeting is scheduled for March 11th, tentatively at Santa Clara University in partnership with the Markkula Ethics Center.   Members were urged to mark their calendars and spread the word.