Regular Meeting of the Waterfront Commission
August 9, 2000
COMMISSIONERS PRESENT: Cobb, Collignon, Kamen, Kawczynska, Minasian, Smith, Wolgast
The meeting was called to order at 7:00.
Mr. Bob Griffiths said that the Commission should have reviewed and endorsed staff’s recommendation to the City Council that it approve submission of a loan application to the California Department of Boating and Waterways.
Mr. Mark Liolios spoke in favor of the Commission endorsing the two parks tax ballot measures appearing on the November 2000 ballot.
2. Approval of June Minutes and Agenda
The East Shore State Park and Marina Ordinance Revision items were switched. The Solar Calendar item was moved from information to discussion. The agenda was approved unanimously. Minor changes were made to the minutes of the June meeting and their adoption was approved unanimously.
3. Marina Ordinance Revision of Live Aboard definition
Commissioner Kamen proposed that the Marina Ordinance be revised to allow berthers to stay no more than 12 nights aboard a vessel in per month. He said that this would allow berthers to spend three-day weekends on their vessels. He suggested that the key card system could be used to enforce the prohibition against people living on board. Commissioner Kawczynska asked for staff’s opinion about this proposed change. Cliff Marchetti said that three nights out of seven was standard for most Marinas. Commissioner Cobb asked who was responsible for the enforcement of live aboard rules. Cliff Marchetti said it was the Marina staff’s responsibility to enforce these rules.
Motion Kamen/Smith: to increase the maximum number of nights a berther may stay on their vessel per month from 7 to 12. The Commission adopted the motion unanimously.
4. East Shore State Park Planning Process
Mr. Larry Tong, Mr. Rick LeFlore and Mr. Don Neuwirth gave a presentation on the planning process for East Shore State Park.
Mr. Tong reviewed the acquisition by the state of land along the east shore of the Bay.
Mr. Neuwirth distributed a timeline for the planning process. He said that the process would be an inclusive, citizen planning effort. He said that a Request for Qualifications would be sent to planning firms and the responses would be due at the end of August. He said a firm would be chosen in November. He said the schedule called for plan approval in October 2002.
Commissioner Smith expressed concern that the timeline appeared not to include any deliverable written reports until the final report.
Mr. Neuwirth said there would be interim documents to be scheduled by the chosen planning firm. Commissioner Smith said that the next timeline should include a schedule for interim written reports that would allow for public comment.
Commissioner Kawczynska asked what the selection criteria for the firm would be and if the chosen firm would be required to be familiar with City of Berkeley processes. Commissioner Kamen asked whether it would be required to be familiar with water related activities. Mr. Neuman said that the firm would be one familiar with the City’s processes and water-related activities.
Mr. LeFlore said the planning process for East Shore State Park was locally driven. He said that the East Bay Regional Park District was functioning as the State’s lead agency and that interim work products would be required.
Commissioner Kawczynska asked how Citizens for East Shore State Park (CESP) interfaced with the Park District. Mr. Tong said that CESP had agreed to provide documentation and background material and would report on developments in a public newsletter.
Commissioner Kamen questioned the propriety of CESP being publicly funded to conduct public outreach. He asked what the specifics of their grant application were.
Commissioner Wolgast said that CESP had been sensitized to the potential conflict of being publicly funded and acting as an advocate.
Commissioner Cobb suggested that the Waterfront Commission also engage in public outreach concerning the park
Commissioner Smith said that it was his impression that CESP recognized their potential conflict of interest and that they would not do both public outreach and advocacy.
Commissioner Kamen said that CESP has a clear agenda and that it was not appropriate to publicly fund them for any involvement in the process. He said that they should maintain their role as an advocate and not a planning facilitator.
Commissioner Kawczynska extended a standing invitation to EBRD to attend the Waterfront Commission’s monthly meetings.
Commissioner Smith asked for a clarification of the jurisdiction of the area between Frontage Road and the shoreline.
Mr. Tong said that a coordinated effort between Park and Berkeley Police was needed to deal with the problems along Frontage Road.
5. Park Tax
Commissioner Smith described the two Park Tax items on the November ballot. He said the increase would raise approximately $600,000 needed to maintain new projects to be completed soon including the Harrison Street playing fields, the I-80 overcrossing and the Bay Trail.
The Commission voted unanimously to endorse passage of measures “S” and “W”, the parks maintenance measures.
6. Sewer Replacement Project
Cliff Marchetti said that The City’s Public Works Department would undertake a Sanitary Sewer Replacement and Rehabilitation Project to begin Sept.1, 2000. He said that the project would last about five months and was intended to improve pumping capacity and eliminate spills. He said that in conjunction with the sewer replacement, the pathway that ran along the Marina basin would be repaired.
7. Dock and Restroom Rehabilitation Project Loan
Cliff Marchetti said that staff had submitted a loan application to the Department of Boating and Waterways for $7,000,000. He said that staff had revised its original cost estimate for the project from 7,000,000 to $7,600,000 at the advice of the Department of Boating and Waterways after they reviewed the original loan application. He said that the Department had been informed that the Marina may wish to borrow the additional $600,000.
8. Marina Budget
Commissioner Smith distributed spreadsheets projecting the Marina’s finances over a twenty year planning horizon which included substantial funding shortfalls. Commissioner Cobb asked if some of the park tax increase could be used for the Marina. Cliff Marchetti explained that it could only be used for maintenance of the parks.
Commissioner Kamen asked if the boundaries of the enterprise zone could be expanded to include potential hotel construction in the area at the foot of Gilman Street in order to collect revenue similar to other Marina leases. He asked staff to investigate the possibility of redrawing the Marina Enterprise Zone boundaries.
Commissioner Minasian asked how much of the additional traffic brought to the Marina by the Bay Trail and bike overpass would be revenue generating. He said that the Marina needed more commercial revenue.
Commissioner Cobb said that the Commission should document the Marina’s financial problems in a “white paper”. She said that the City should approach the state legislature through its representatives to include a line item in the budget for the Marina.
Commissioners Collignon, Cobb and Smith volunteered to form a subcommittee to draft a white paper for the City Council on the state of the Marina’s finances.
9. Aquatic Park
In response to concerns about drainage problems along Aquatic Park pathways, Cliff Marchetti said that the high water table would cause some measure of puddling despite repaving.
The meeting was adjourned at 9:30