City Administrators Weekly Report

April 13 , 2009

CITY ADMINISTRATOR

In the continuing celebration of our City’s Centennial, environmental talks are being held Wednesday, April 15 and Thursday, April 16 at the Wetlands and Wildlife Center on Newland and PCH. The talks start at 7:30 p.m., are free and open to the public.

Centennial merchandise is still available and will be on sale at the Earth Day Celebration this Sunday, April 19th at the Rainbow Environmental Services facility.

On April 30th at 7:00 p.m., Mayor Bohr will be hosting a Town Hall Meeting at Marina High School. The meeting is the first of four that will be held at the different High Schools in the City. Mayor Bohr will be joined by Mayor Pro Tem Cathy Green and Councilmember Gil Coerper, along with City Administrator Fred Wilson, and department heads to discuss items such as the City Budget, development projects, and other current topics. The meeting will be held in the school cafeteria. Marina High School is located at 15871 Springdale St.

BUILDING & SAFETY

HB Goes Green

On April 1st, the City launched the new, updated “HB goes Green” website.  The Building Department is pleased to provide information on green building, links to state and federal information, and incentives/rebates for green building efforts.  Now customers, residents, and employees can visit the website to search by department or topic for all “green” articles and information related to sustainability in our city.  Take a look at all the city’s department’s efforts at: http://surfcity-hb.org/Residents/green_city/

Earth Day Celebration

On Sunday April 19th, the Building Department will exhibit at the Earth Day Celebration hosted by Rainbow Environmental Services .  Staff looks forward to the event as an educational opportunity to speak with the residents of Huntington Beach on Green Building Efforts within our city.

CITY TREASURER

“Go Green!” Get your Municipal Services (Utility) Statement Electronically!

“eBill” is the newest service being offered by the city for utility customers.  This new program enables customers to receive their monthly utility statement and inserts via an authorized email.  eBill is only available to AutoPay customers who have their payments automatically deducted from a bank account.  Sign up now and “go green” by discontinuing the mailing of your utility statement.  Electronic copies of all inserts are available on the eBill website.  Go to www.surfcity-hb.org/ebill to view a sample bill and to register for this new service.

Reminder:  April 19, 2009, Centennial Earth Day Celebration at Rainbow Environmental Services – Personal Document Shredding Opportunity

This Sunday, April 19th, citizens will have a chance to attend a free, secure, shred-while-you-watch event at Rainbow Environmental Services at 17121 Nichols Street (off Warner between Gothard and Beach Blvd.) between the hours of 10 am and 3 pm.  Hosted by the City Clerk’s Office and the Police Department, there will be no per-person limit to the number of personal documents you can bring for secure shredding.  In addition to paper documents, CDs, DVDs and VHS tapes can also be shredded.  You won’t be able to watch the destruction of your CDs, DVDs or VHS tapes because the process is done with different equipment off site.  This free family event at Rainbow Environmental Services promises to be fun and educational with games, prizes, food, entertainment, big trucks and tours of the Material Recovery Facility.  For free document shredding, residents should enter at Gate 6 on Nichols Street where staff will help you unload and direct you to the nearby parking area.

COMMUNITY SERVICES DEPARTMENT

Earth Day Beach Clean Up

Hit the beach for Earth Day as hundreds of volunteers will spend their Saturday morning cleaning up Huntington City Beach. Volunteers will be meeting on the north side of the Pier on April 25 from 9:00a.m. to noon.  All ages are welcome.  Bags, gloves, and free parking will be available.  For more information, call 714-536-5614.  This event will also mark the last scheduled cleanup for 19 nonprofit organizations that have been a part of the City-Sponsored Adopt-A-Beach Program.  Each group has been cleaning a designated area once a week for the last five months.  For their hard work and dedication, each group will be receiving $1,000.

Huntington Beach Senior Services

Holiday Meals – Volunteers delivered Easter Meals on Sunday, April 12, 2009 to 82 Huntington Beach Seniors.  Seniors Outreach Social Workers pre-selected older adults who would be alone on the holiday and would most benefit from the holiday meal.  Sunrise Senior Living prepared a festive meal of baked ham with cranberry chutney and local Girl Scouts and Brownies handcrafted Easter cards and placemats for each senior.  The Handy Crafters and the Huntington Beach Council on Aging funded the holiday meals. 

Delivering the holiday meals is often a family affair with children getting a first-time opportunity to community service.  The older adults look forward to the delicious meal as well as the visit from the volunteers.  “The love you share in delivering my meal is greatly appreciated” a senior told her volunteer.  Holiday Meals are also delivered on Thanksgiving and Christmas.  If you are interested in volunteering or want more information on the Holiday Meal program, contact Diane Swarts, 714-374-1544 dswarts@surfcity-hb.org.

Computer Lab- Access the Internet--Surf the Web - Check Email - Print Correspondence - Practice your Skills!  The Michael E. Rodgers Seniors Center has a 12-station Free Computer Lab open Monday – Thursday from 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. for adults 50+.  Software Programs available include:
Internet Explorer; Microsoft Word; Microsoft Excel; Microsoft PowerPoint; Adobe Acrobat PDF reader, and Windows Media Player. 

Printing is available with your own paper.  Saving and downloading is available with your own removable storage media: CD-Rom, floppy disc, or USB drive.  You must present a valid state issued driver’s license or ID card to obtain a computer key.  The computers are self-service and staff is not available for assistance during computer lab.  Computer classes are offered at the senior center through the Sands magazine.  For more information please call, 714-536-9387.

Easter Hunt Was A Success!!!

 

On Saturday, April 11, the Community Services Department and the Huntington Beach Kiwanis Club hosted the 19th Annual Easter Hunt.  The event at Central Park drew large crowds with over 5,000 people attending.  Children up to 8 years of age collected over 4,000 pounds of candy.  There were also wonderful displays by several departments within the city.  Children were invited to climb on various equipment and vehicles provided by Public Works, Fire, and Police Departments.  The City Clerk’s Office, Municipal Employees Association, Code Enforcement and Hazardous Materials had displays and information.  Various games were available for children of all ages.  The Shorelife Church Band provided entertainment throughout the day.  A visit from the Easter Bunny along with Sparky, McGruff, and other characters made it a perfect day for the children.

Adult Softball Registration

Registration for the Summer 2009 Adult Softball league is now underway. The deadline to register is Thursday, April 23, 2009.  Senior leagues are offered on Sundays and Thursdays; Men’s leagues are offered on Sundays, Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays; Coed leagues are offered on Sundays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. The leagues will begin play on Monday, May 4, concluding in late July or early August.  For more details or information, please contact the Community Services office at 714-536-5230.

Youth In Government Day – This Thursday, April 16, 2009, the Huntington Beach Youth Board will host its 25th Annual Youth In Government Day.  Over 200 students from all four high schools in Huntington Beach will come to City Hall to learn more about their city government by being assigned to various departments and learn the day-to-day functions of city employees.  This is the largest number of students to have participated in this career-building day since 1984. 

The day begins with a get-acquainted breakfast where students and staff first meet.  The City Administrator will present the students with an overview of city hall functions followed by a staff-intern period.  Students, staff, and City Council will then meet for a mock-City Council meeting discussing subjects of interest to high school students.  A luncheon will follow the mock-Council meeting with guest speaker, awards, and recognition for winners of the Essay Contest, Art Contest, and the ultimate, Youth of the Year competition for senior students only.  The day presents a challenging and exciting opportunity for youth to explore the government arena and learn more about their city by being directly involved.   These students may become tomorrow’s leaders!

ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT

 

New Zealand Natural Ice Cream is now open at The Strand in downtown Huntington Beach.  New Zealand Natural Ice Cream has quickly expanded from its original roots in New Zealand to over 19 countries. The Strand location will feature their menu on state of the art, cutting-edge LCD screens which will give guests a chance to experience a pure adventure in scooped ice cream, frozen yogurt, sorbets, smoothies, and shakes. 

Chili at the Beach

Save the Date! The 2nd annual Chili at the Beach in Downtown Huntington Beach will be held on Father’s Day June 20th presented by the Huntington Beach Downtown Business Improvement District.  Activities include a chili-cook off on Saturday, a competition benefiting CHOC Hospital, prizes, children’s activities, entertainment, and Father’s Day Specials on Sunday!  Saturday the event is open from 11 a.m. – 7 p.m., and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

INFORMATION SERVICES

Surf City Pipeline – Update
Since launching on February 23, 2009, Surf City Pipeline’s knowledge base has been viewed over 6,000 times.  Of the close to 400 topics, following are the most frequently viewed and requested topics.

Topic

Viewed

Requests

  • Street Repairs/Potholes

112

15

  • Utility Billing – General

87

10

  • Inoperable Vehicles

82

14

  • Pet Licenses

92

4

  • Recruitment

77

7

Check out some of the other topics available at:  www.surfcity-hb.org

LIBRARY SERVICES DEPARTMENT

Literacy Fundraising Cookbook

The HB Literacy Program has put their fundraising cookbook online. Over 200 family-favorite recipes for appetizers, salads, soups, main dishes, desserts and more have been digitized and put into an interactive Acrobat Reader file for downloading.

Designed by Literacy board member Carolyn Yamaoka in 2005 as a fundraiser, the cookbook contains recipes from Literacy volunteers, adult learners and staff.  Many of the dishes in the cookbook have been served up and enjoyed at the Literacy Program’s yearly potluck lunch every December.

The digital cookbook can be downloaded for $6.95. To purchase, go to www.hbpl.org, click on volunteers, then click on Literacy. The cookbook is prominently placed on the Literacy webpage. The table of contents can be viewed online for free. A free recipe for Grandma Goldie’s Honey Cake is also posted on the Literacy webpage.

The printed version is also available for $10.00 and can be bought in the Literacy office, located in the Central Library (downstairs). An attractive book bag is also available for $10.00.

Come Celebrate National Library Week in the Children’s Department

The Children’s Library is once again participating in National Library Week, taking place this year between April 12th and 18th.  Check out our “Libraries Rock” poster as you enter the children’s department, and stop by the display case where rabbits sit amongst colorful Easter eggs as they read Beatrix Potter books.  Kids of all ages can also sign up for the Spring Reading Program anytime before the end of April, and pick out a special reading-themed pencil, sticker or bookmark for every five books read. 

Finally, in honor of the annual Great American Read-Aloud, we will be having a special guest reader at our Preschool Storytime on Friday, April 17th.  Author Rhonda Fischer will read her book, Randy Kazandy, Where are Your Glasses? at both the 10:00 and 11:00 storytimes, and even teach the kids to sing the “Randy Kazandy Time” song!  She will have some books on hand for purchase and signing after the storytimes.  Libraries rock!  Just wait until the Summer Reading Program begins!

Soccer Collies at the Main Street Library

On a postcard perfect spring morning, two-hundred plus soccer fans gathered on the lawn of the Main Street Branch Library to match their skills against a team of veteran soccer players known as the Soccer Collies.  Their owner, Mark Lukas, explained how the Soccer Collies came to be and gave a brief account of each Border collie’s skills and history.  Then came what the children were waiting for, the opportunity to play, pet, and take pictures with their four-legged heroes.  Judging by the smiles on everyone’s face this event was a huge success.

PLANNING

Notice of Flood Insurance Rate Map Amendment

On March 30, 2009 the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) issued a Letter of Map Revision (LOMR) which changed the flood zone designation from AE to X (shaded) for an area along the Huntington Beach Channel generally located between Adams Avenue and Banning Avenue.  Residents in this area whose lender requires them to carry flood insurance can submit a copy of the LOMR to their lender to request removal of the flood insurance requirement for their property.  Despite the LOMR, lenders may still require flood insurance as part of their business practice.  Also, please be aware that property located in flood zone X can still be flooded.  As a result, FEMA encourages maintaining flood insurance to protect from possible loss.  A copy of the letter and the supporting documents from FEMA are available on the Planning Department website:
 http://www.huntingtonbeachca.gov/government/departments/planning/flood/index.cfm

Please contact Andrew Gonzales, Associate Planner at (714) 374-1547 if you have any questions regarding this LOMR.

California Coastal Commission Meeting

On Wednesday, April 8, the California Coastal Commission approved, with modifications, the City’s request to amend the certified Local Coastal Program (LCP) by incorporating changes made by the City over the last few years (2001 -2007).  Changes that were approved include: modifications to the Huntington Beach Zoning and Subdivision Ordinance (HBZSO) regarding affordable housing requirements to be consistent with State law; religious assembly uses to comply with the Religious Land Uses and Institutionalized Persons Act (RLUIPA); parking controls and privacy gates, and bicycle parking.  The City’s entitlement/permit streamlining efforts, adopted by the City Council in 2005, were also certified by the Coastal Commission.  The modifications approved by the Coastal Commission pertaining to parking in the coastal zone and affordable housing density bonus provisions will be forwarded to the City Council for adoption. 

POLICE DEPARTMENT

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month

Throughout the month of April, we want to bring awareness to this crime and how it affects all of us. Rape or sexual assault can happen to anyone, regardless of age, gender, race, sexual orientation or socioeconomic status. We all have a responsibility to stand up and speak out against sexual assault and rape. The person you’re speaking for may not be able to find their voice to speak for themselves right now and they may be someone you know.

Sexual assault is a general term which covers a range of crimes, including rape. As defined under California law, rape is non-consensual sexual intercourse that involves the use of threat of force, violence, or immediate and unlawful bodily injury, or threats of future retaliation and duress. Sexual intercourse is considered non-consensual and therefore rape when the person is incapable of giving consent because she/he is incapacitated from alcohol and or drugs, or if a mental disorder or developmental or physical disability renders the victim incapable of giving consent. Whether the accused is a stranger, acquaintance, spouse, or friend is irrelevant to the legal definition of rape.
Some interesting facts:
About Victims:

  • • 1 in 6 women and 1 in 33 men will be a victim of sexual assault in their lifetime.
  • • College age women are 4 times more likely to be sexually assaulted.

Sexual Assault Numbers:

  • • In 2007, there were 248,300 victims of sexual assault.
  • • Every 2 minutes, someone in the U.S. is sexually assaulted.

Reporting to Police:

  • • 60% of sexual assaults are not reported to the police.
  • • Reporting has increased by ½ since 1993

About Rapists:

  • • Approximately 73% of rape victims know their assailants.

Teal Ribbons are available at the Police Front desk!  Come get yours to wear to show your support for Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

PUBLIC WORKS

Residential Water Consumption March 2009  and Irrigation Tips 
The City of Huntington Beach has implemented Stage 1 of the Water Management Program.  All customers are requested to use water wisely.  Included in Stage 1 is the reduction of irrigation and other outdoor water uses.  With the summer months approaching, it is important to inspect and repair irrigation systems.  In addition to insuring a well maintained system, residents are urged to:

  • Schedule irrigation between 7:00 p.m. and 9:00 a.m. and reduce irrigation times or frequency by 50% where possible.
  • Adjust sprinklers and irrigation systems to avoid over-spray, run-off and waste.  Do not allow water to run off landscaped areas into adjoining streets, sidewalks, parking lots or alleys.
  • Install low-water-using plants combined with hardscape materials and energy-efficient irrigation systems when installing or replacing landscapes.