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Your City Council Live: Council Moves Forward with Parcel C Sale Agreement

Hercules Patch reports live from the June 12, 2012 Hercules City Council meeting.

8:50, CITY MANAGER REPORTS AND RESOLUTIONS, Passes, 4-1, with Councilwoman De Vera voting "nay."

1. Parcel C Sales Agreement With DeNova Homes For High End Apartments

"We don't have a lot of money and we need this money to pay off one-time debt," Duran said.

City Manager Steve Duran gives Power Point presentation regarding the deal:

(From the presentation)

- DeNova Homes were had the highest offer.

- Agreement is subject to due diligence feasibility period

-Close of escrow is subject to the city design review, including CEQA

Why Sell Now?

- Needed to settle with Ambac

- Needed to settle construction debt

-END OF PRESENTATION-

De Vera raises the question, "Why bother selling the property now when it could be clawed back?"  De Vera asks how Duran knows no retail developers were interested in Parcel C, which is what the city's consultants found. Duran said consultants working for the city studied the market and interest of retail developers.

Public Comments On Parcel C Sale Agreement:

Sherry McCoy, "The developer doesn't have Hercules' best interest in mind. That's your job," McCoy said to the Council. "The long-held vision of our community is being transformed by a few...hijacked." Urges the council to vote against or delay the vote.

Bill Kelly, Get the EIR done, and get a complete analysis so the city doesn't get tied up in a lawsuit.

Chris Kelly, We don't have any more money...I would urge the council to move ahead and approve the sale agreement. What I'm most concerned about is the city becoming solvent and the waterfront project (coming to fruition).

Judy Swager, "I don't feel we should just hand it over as apartments to an apartment developer...we really don't know much about this at all...I don't feel like it's time to vote for this project..."

Virgil Delavega, "Is bankruptcy and fire sale of our properties the only options we have? ...If so, I assure you we're going to go bankruptcy (soon)...Think hard, we have very few parcels left...what we need are revenue generating (investments)...in order to pay off future debt obligations."

Phil Simmons, "Everything on this property is ready to go for these guys...what you're doing by voting on this tonight is creating the potential...for this developer to sue this city...over this PSA."

8:45, UNFINISHED BUSINESS

Suspend Inclusionary Housing Requirements In Hercules, Passes 5-0

8:20, CONSENT CALENDAR

1. Approve City Council Meeting Minutes, Passes

2. Landscaping and Lighting Assessment District Annual Engineer's Report, Passes 5-0

3. Amendment To Agreement With D'Oro Construction

4. Gray-Bowen Contract Extension, Passes 3-0 with Councilman William Wilkins and Councilman Gerard Boulanger recusing themselves.

5. School Resource Officer Contract, Passes 5-0

6. Liens On Properties, Passes 5-0

7. Calling City Election, Passes 5-0

7:30, PUBLIC COMMENT

Marin Tobin Kelly, The signs that are on the corner of Sycamore and San Pablo Ave and others..."They look tacky...and they're advertising foreclosures and short sales...but I don't like the shadow that it's casting on our community..."

Flor Malicse, President of Hercules Senior Citizens Club, Thanks the Council for helping to keep the city's Senior Center open. It is a "lifeline" to the senior community, Malicse said.

Phil Simmons, Urges the city to take a different direction with its current plans for Parcel C.

Jaynelle Bell, Victoria by the Bay resident, "When we moved here nine years ago, we were told a story...many those promises have never come true," but one of the things I hope happens is sidewalk development between Victoria Crescent East and west to Willow Avenue..."I don't want to see a tragedy happen." Also, please keep your promise, and see the Hercules vision through, Bell said.

Chris Kelley, Thursday, June 21 at 6:30 p.m. at the Hercules Swim Center

Roberto De Los Santos, President of the Filipino Americans of Contra Costa County. "Today, June 12, (Philippine Independence Day) is a very important day for Filipinos everywhere."

We need more (financial) info coming from you...Suggests the city

Jojo Soriano, Hercules needs more retail. If we create a space for retail, it will be supported, Soriano said.

Toni Leance, The city has abandoned its vision plan.

Sue (resident), Opposes Measure K, Measure K campaign appeared to be a giant in comparison to the grassroots, anti-Measure K campaign, said Sue (last name not heard).

School district board member Madeline Kronenberg, "I wanted to join in with Mr. Ramsey to let you know how important Hercules is to the school board...we need to develop a stronger relationship...we want to make sure we're moving together in a positive way..."

Charles Ramsey, West Contra Costa Unified School District board President, I'm going to start alerting the community to what their fair share of public funds is, Ramsey said.

Sherry McCoy, "Sycamore Crossing is one of the most valuable properties the city has..." McCoy said she has serious concerns about the Sycamore Crossing purchase and sale agreement.

Lorna Dietz, Older sister of Councilwoman Myrna DeVera,  Today is the Philippine Declaration of Independence Day. "I am here to represent the Filipino community...We are here and we are the swing vote...We are one community..." Deeds endorses three budding Filipino political candidates.

7:15, Receive report from Cindy Rasmussen about elder abuse awareness. Rasmussen works for the Department of Aging and Adult services. "What I see everyday is shocking, heartbreaking and truly tragic...We need to bring the issue (elder abuse at the forefront)...Anyone can make a report to adult protective services. It is confidential." To report abuse, call (800) 814-0009, in Contra Costa County, the number is (925)-646-2584.

7:10 p.m. The Council honors Steve Kirby for his community involvement and retirement from the West Contra Costa Unified School District. Kirby is a longtime resident and active in a number of community organizations including Hercules library fundraising.

The meeting starts at 7 p.m.

Joseph Catindig June 20, 2012 at 08:15 PM
I do not have that information Carol. See, this is my main issue. Why is the public input not being sought at this point, in the first place. I stood side by side with these now council members during the recall effort. I remember us crying transparency, public input will always be respected and be the priority, we will not let the CM run this place aground ever again and on and on. The close to 4.5K voters who signed that recall petition were hopeful that all these things we cried about are going to happen. The big 3, with only a few insider's knowledge, without being vetted, ran and eventually winning the recalled spots despite of one candidate's lies and the other's smear campaign against his opponent through emails and private phone calls. I even got mine when I was at work. Fast forward to the present, nothing has changed. CM is running the show with council members going along with his decisions, without the public's input until after the fact. The possibility of lining their pockets is out of the question because there is nothing to line them anyway, but who knows? People have misconstrued ideas that I and others' do not want Safeway to come. We are individuals who have independent minds with the same opinions and ideas. It just happened that we've been Patching since the first time it came out public and still Patching away. This group of individuals had been branded as the "fan club." As far as I'm concerned, we are not!
Tom P. June 20, 2012 at 08:19 PM
@Phil Simmons: As that parcel is public land, isn't there a legal requirement or fiduciary responsibility for the city manager towards the citizens to bid out that property before signing a contract? Giving an "exclusive" to any buyer or interested party would have created a suspicion of kickbacks during Oliva's time. What is the difference with Duran? This should be brought up to some state agency as our new city attorney has been performing like Mick Cabral, only with lesser savvy or knowlege. Where is the outcry from Romero, Wilkins and Boulangier? New faces, new minions, same old same old. The recall has been a waste of resources.
Joseph Catindig June 20, 2012 at 08:28 PM
Carol, trust me, I, we or us...call us what you want but were these really the best deals, not necessarily top dollars, we could have ever gotten for these pieces of land? This question will remain, for me at least, until this CM and his council are serious about listening to the people and involving them with future deals like these, if there are still some left to deal for. Hey Carol, it was a pleasure exchanging comments with you. That said, I will end our conversation with a 8). I have exceeded my Patch time limit way too much today. If you are free tonight, pass by Powder Keg to show support for Sarah Creeley's Cure for Cancer crusade. I would love to personally meet you. Later!
Joseph Catindig June 20, 2012 at 08:39 PM
I believe, local or other developers knew nothing about Hercules and its potential until after Sycamore North was put up for sale thru CRBE or whatever you call their company and saw the perfect opportunity. These developers smelled blood and now we're letting them suck it!
Dwayne Hoover June 21, 2012 at 05:10 AM
Carol, A developer did exactly that and was told not to bother because the city is selling the land to Safeway (if possible), even though the land was never offered for sell, and even though it was never put up for any sort of bid process.

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