YOLO SUN NEWS REPORT :
At the recent (monthly) meeting between elected officials and relevant staff of City of Woodland and Yolo County, three key items of local news arose.
___ Potential Public-Safety Services Consolidations ___
Senior staff of both local governments will soon meet to follow-up on already existing ideas regarding potential consolidations of city and county services and to “brainstorm” additional ideas.
Currently under consideration is a proposal by Supervisor Matt Rexroad for Yolo County to enter into contractual agreements with its three major cities (Wooodland, Davis, West Sacramento) for supplemental provision of public safety services.
In detail, this proposal is to have West Sacramento (police and fire departments) cover Yolo County’s panhandle (Clarksburg, etc.), while Woodland and Davis would split the remainder of the eastern half of the County.
This collaboration would allow Yolo County law enforcement and fire protection services to focus on the western portion of the County, containing most of the 21,000 residents of unincorporated areas.
“It’s a long way [for sheriffs, etc., to travel] from Dunnigan to Clarksburg, [especially] when there’s a problem,” indicates Rexroad.
Proximity to the relevant city providing services would help remedy such adverse field-enforcement dynamics, arising from added budget reductions, suggests Rexroad, who believes that the municipalities may explore such opportunities and discover useful, cost-saving (money-making) efficiencies.
Supervisor Duane Chamberlain supports Rexroad’s initiative of public safety consolidation, explaining that: “We all serve the same taxpayers, and I don’t really understand the need some of these [jurisdictional] lines.”
Woodland Vice-mayor Art Pimentel and City Manager Mark Deven agreed to have the City Council investigate and evaluate Rexroad’s new public-safety proposal.
___ Other Consolidation Notions ___
Another topic of potential city – county sharing of services is the area of Community Development Block (CDBG) Funding, and such action may eventually result in employee layoffs in one local government or another.
A third item mentioned is “housing,” raised by Deven, who indicates that there likely exist a lot of parallels, “in building inspection,” for example, between city and county staff (some of whom may face eventual layoffs).
“There are no longer any sacred cows,” exclaims Deven, and all of the conferring officials, including the new Yolo County Chief Administrative Officer, Patrick Blacklock, agreed with his financial / budgetary assessment.
___ Petrovich’s Gateway II To Be “Significantly Scaled-Back” ___
The proposal of Paul Petrovich to build a vast and diverse, peripheral commercial center in Woodland — annexing 150 acres — immediately south of his present 50 acre Gateway project, is being — “significantly scaled-back” — according to Deven, who indicated that a recent meeting between city staff and Petrovich produced this result.
Supervisors Rexroad and Chamberlain said that it was premature to bring this development matter before the county — until Woodland knows precisely what it wants to approve and achieve.
A new tax-sharing agreement between the city and county — must also precede — any county consideration of this proposal, all parties agreed.
Apparently, the new tax-policy ball is now in the city’s court, with Deven to prepare an economically specific elaboration of already mutually accepted planning principles, that would provide a potential basis for an eventual joint agreement for city – county tax sharing.
___ Feasibility Question Arises Regarding New Water District ___
Despite the fact that Woodland and Davis have recently formed a joint-power authority to construct and operate a (colossal) surface water acquisition project (involving the Sacramento River) — culminating a planning process that has been in motion for years — Yolo County Supervisors Rexroad and (especially) Chamberlain have suddenly requested that Deven provide them with the detailed technical studies which — reportedly — demonstrate the infeasibility of an alternative proposal, the option of an extension of the Tehama-Colusa Canal.
Chamberlain argues that perhaps available financial support from relevant agricultural interests — was not properly considered / calculated — in the prediction of expense for the Tehama-Colusa Canal (which unlike the current — and expensive — approach of pumping water, relies on only gravity for its water flow).
Cost (in comparison with the chosen option) was apparently the reason for it’s alleged infeasibility.
Deven and Pimentel both firmly declared that: ‘this train has already left the station,’ as far as the municipalities program to place a proper siphon (pumping station) on the Sacramento River, perhaps near the Vietnam Veterans Memorial Bridge (Interstate 5) or further south.
However, Deven and Pimentel said they were happy to satisfy the supervisors’ request for the technical material demonstrating economic infeasibility of the option of constructing an extension of [the already existing] Tehama-Colusa Canal.