BRECA Steering Committee Meeting Minutes – July 28, 2020


DATE: July 28, 2020
PLACE:  Internet, via Zoom
MEETING TYPE:  BRECA Steering Committee Meeting

James Adams
Lori Christensen
Ken Crawford
Bonnie Domeny
Rene Hamlin
Gay Jones
Lee Leavelle
Jim Morgan

Andrea White


1. Call to Order by Chair Bonnie Domeny

2. Welcome and Introductions

3. Update on Casa Linda/Blossom Village

Rebecca Sloan, with Supervisor Don Nottoli’s office, gave an update on the Casa Linda/Blossom Village issue.  She stated that Casa Linda had their business license revoked about one year ago, reflecting about three years of code violations.  Supervisor Nottoli and several County Departments met with the new owner in February.  At the last BRECA meeting there was a presentation from Sacramento Self Help Housing (SSHH) about using the Blossom Village as homeless housing.  They had a lease agreement that was to begin on July 1.  However, the site was not ready, and the owner had not secured the needed approvals from County Departments.  The new owner must bring the site up to current codes.  Bottom line nobody is moving in anytime soon.  The owner would have to get a conditional use permit for the use proposed by SSHH.  It is possible the new owner will reopen Blossom Village as a hotel.

There were questions about Blossom Village and SSHH.  Gay Jones enquired about the kitchenettes that were discussed at the last BRECA meeting?  Ms. Sloan stated that some of the units already had kitchenettes, and that no new ones were to be added.  A member of the audience enquired about why multifamily is allowed in a commercial zone?  Ms. Sloan stated that is part of the zoning, although some standards need to be met.  Gay Jones enquired whether the use change would have to come before the Cordova Community Planning and Advisory Council (CORPAC)?  Ms. Sloan stated that she did not know, but can get that information.  At this point there is no actual proposal from the owner about use.  County Departments are watching the project closely.

4. Questions or Comments from the Community on Non-agenda items

A member of the audience stated that she had sent information on putting speed tables on Mira Del Rio Dr. at Riviera East Park and also on Bradshaw Rd. to Chair Bonnie Domeny, and was wondering where the process is?  Bonnie responded that the process starts with a petition circulated by local neighbors.  BRECA can support this, but the neighbors need to take the lead.

A member of the audience commented that there is a lot of trash along the Mayhew Drain where the bridge goes over the freeway.  This could end up in the Drain and then the river when it rains.

A member of the audience commented that more trash pickup is needed in the Parkway.

A member of the audience commented that there is a lot of Starthistle on the housing side of the American River Levee near their house.  Jim Morgan stated that the responsible agency is the American River Flood Control District.

5. Minutes of June 23, 2020

An amendment to the draft minutes of June 23, 2020 was proposed and accepted.  Rene Hamlin made a motion to accept the amended minutes.  James Adams seconded the motion.  The motion was approved unanimously.

6. Reports

a. Treasurer
There was no Treasurer’s report.

Lee Leavelle stated that there was a CORPAC (Cordova Community Planning and Advisory Council) meeting this month.  No issues of direct concern to BRECA were discussed.

c. Membership
Jim Morgan reported that BRECA had lost two memberships, but gained one, for a total of 92 memberships.

7. Old Business

a. Cal Am
Gay Jones stated that she had been contacted by Richard Rauschmeir with the Public Utilities Commission (PUC) Public Advocates Office concerning a proposed decision that would get rid of the Water Rate Adjustment Mechanism (WRAM) and other surcharges on the bills.  California American Water (Cal Am) opposes the proposed decision and has been urging others to oppose the decision.  Mr. Rauschmeir had asked for BRECA’s support.  Gay made a motion that BRECA support the proposed decision and send a letter or email to the PUC.  James Adams seconded the motion.  A member of the audience stated that this would be a good issue to take to the community.  We could go door to door.  Gay Jones stated that the proposed decision could be heard by the PUC as early as August 6, so there may not be time to take it to the community.  A vote on the motion was taken and the motion was approved unanimously.

b. From the Floor
There was no Old Business from the floor.

8. New Business 

a. PayPal, Mailchimp, and Website Backup
Bonnie Domeny stated that we need a person to serve as backup for the PayPal, Mailchimp, and BRECA Website accounts.  Rene Hamlin volunteered to do it.

b. American River Parkway
– Natural Resources Management Plan Survey
Bonnie Domeny commented that she has put a link to a survey on the Natural Resources Management Plan on the Parkway that is being conducted by County Parks.  Gay Jones commented that there are many issues that can be addressed in the survey, e.g. spraying of herbicides.  James Adams commented that there was recently some spraying for mosquitoes in our area.

– Request More Maintenance
Gay Jones requested that people go to the County Parks website and click on the Oak leaf, to request more trash pickup and address other issues.  James Adams commented that people are parking their vehicles by the river at Gristmill, which is not allowed.

– Bicycling on non-maintained Trails
James Adams stated that many people bicycle on the dirt trails.  They are not supposed to do that.  Maybe we should send a letter to County Parks about this.

c.  Vector Control Spraying
James Adams commented that he was surprised by spraying for mosquitoes.

d. From the Floor
Lori Christensen stated that we should consider putting a plaque on the Little Library in memoriam to Lynda Hammitt, who put in a lot of effort to get it to happen.  Rene Hamlin agreed, but added that it should be a plaque for more than one person: she would like to see one with Lynda Hammitt and Stan Mofjeld as well as other names.  She commented that we could have a large plaque to which smaller plaques could be attached.  Lori volunteered to follow up.

A member of the audience stated that some neighbors are getting together to put a tree with a plaque honoring Lynda Hammitt in the park.

James Adams commented that Cal Am is putting on a public forum on August 3rd about acquisition of the East Pasadena Water Company.

Bonnie Domeny stated that there is a new contact with the California Highway Patrol, and asked if we would like them to come to a BRECA meeting.  There was agreement to do so.

Rene Hamlin stated that she would like to do the Annual Meeting via Zoom.  Bonnie Domeny commented that it is unlikely that we can do a physical Annual Meeting in the fall.  It was agreed to have an Annual Meeting by Zoom in October.

Bonnie Domeny enquired whether we should put the recordings of BRECA Zoom meetings on the website.  It was agreed to do so.

9. Meeting adjourned.

The next meeting will be a Steering Committee Meeting on Tuesday, August 25, 2020, via Internet.

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