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This week at City Hall: Jan. 18

The City Council reviews city financial reports, the mayor's veto power gets reviewed, and an affordable housing block in Casa Blanca is considered.

A photo of the entrance to Riverside City Hall.
City Hall in Downtown Riverside

City Council Meeting

Item 7: Fiscal Year 2021-22 First Quarter Financial Update

On Tuesday, City Council will receive and provide input on the fiscal year 2021/22 first-quarter financial report. According to the city’s fiscal update, Riverside is projecting to take in over $300 million from tax revenues and funds transfers, such as the general fund transfer. The council will also review where Measure Z funds were allocated during the first quarter. According to the document, over $13 million was spent during that period, part of which $2.5 million went to hiring additional police staff, $1 million to maintaining firefighter staffing levels, and $929,000 for road improvements.

Item 17: Fiscal Year 2021-22 First Quarter Cash, Investments, and Debt Report

The council will receive and provide input on the Fiscal Year 2021/22 First Quarter Cash, Investments, and Debt report. According to their Quarterly Investment Report dated September 20, 2021, Riverside has over $805 million in its investment portfolio. Additionally, as of October 1, 2021, the city reports that it has over $1.9 billion in outstanding debt.

Item 19: Leasing Agreement with F.I.E.L.D.

City Council will look to approve a leasing agreement with the Farmworker Institute of Education and Leadership Development. The organization will rent a space at the Caesar E. Chavez Community Center at Bobby Bonds Park. The contract will include four one-year options with the city and potentially lead to $140,000 in leasing revenue to the city.

Item 20: Fairmount Park Expansion Product Application Evaluation

The council will potentially approve an application for a land and water conservation grant program. The grant would be $6 million, with the city wanting to use those funds for their Camp Evans improvement project at Fairmount Park.

Charter Review Committee

Item 4: Draft Report Concerning Mayoral Authority

On Wednesday, the committee will receive a presentation and consider whether to place on the Nov. 8 ballot an amendment to the City Charter that would include, within the mayor’s veto power, the power to veto all formal actions taken by the city council, with an exception to ordinances proposed by initiative petition. The mayor’s veto authority would also include the ability to veto any emergency ordinance, annual budgets, appointments, adjustments in compensation, and grant power to suspend or remove any officer or employee appointed by City Council.

Item 6: Proposed Ballot Question Seeking City Inspector General

The committee is reviewing a draft ballot measure that would allow residents to consider the city hiring an inspector general. The current draft of the ballot measure reads, “Shall the City Charter be amended to elect an Inspector General and provide the Inspector General the authority to hire staff and contractors to independently investigate matters of fraud, waste, and abuse by city employees, elected and appointed officials, contractors, and consultants? The Office of the Inspector General office will have full subpoena power to conduct investigations and be sufficiently funded annually. The Inspector-General will publish their findings and recommendations on an annual basis.”

Economic Development, Placemaking, And Branding/Marketing Committee

Item 2: Development Proposal for Casa Blanca Affordable Housing Units

On Thursday, the committee will consider a housing project for an empty 3.9 acre lot by the railroad tracks off Railroad Avenue and Madison Street in Casa Blanca. The plans were put together by the Gilbane Development Company, which is planning to make all the units affordable housing. The plans include 75 multi-family units and 45 units for senior residents.

Cultural Heritage Board

Item 4: Draft Letter to RCTC Concerning Proposed Downtown Metrolink Project

On Wednesday, the board will review a draft letter that they plan to send to the Riverside County Transportation Commission (RCTC) concerning the draft environmental impact report for the Downtown Riverside Metrolink Station Improvements Project. In their draft to the RCTC, the group made five recommendations, including that the commission extend their public comment period by 90 days.

Safety, Wellness, and Youth Committee

Item 4: Naming Community Room After Andy Melendrez

On Wednesday the committee will look to officially name the community room at Booby Bonds Park after former Councilmember Andy Melendrez. Melendrez served Ward 2 from 2006 till 2021.