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Council unanimously approves grant application to build 36-bed homeless shelter 

Highlights from the Paso Robles City Council meeting March 19

–”A hand-up, not a hand out.” That’s how Councilman John Hamon described the proposal to build a homeless shelter next to the Paso Robles Water Treatment Facility.

The proposal approved unanimously Tuesday night includes approval to spend $147,000 to apply for a state grant of $1.7 million to build a 5,000 square foot building with 36 beds. The grant is through the county, which is given money by the state to address homelessness. The grant would be split with the ECHO homeless shelter in Atascadero, which would receive $500,000 of the grant funds.

Councilman John Hamon says the shelter will give people living in the Salinas River bed a place to go, which will help law enforcement evacuate the homeless sites in the river bed. Hamon says he’s been getting a lot of calls and emails about concerns over the safety and public health of people camping in the river bed. Hamon said one of his concerns is that the city can afford to maintain the shelter.

The council also approved a plan for voting districts in the city. The proposed election district is Draft E of five proposals the council considered Tuesday night. The plan was drawn up by resident Brian Kragh. It gives each councilman his or her own district where they currently reside, so they won’t have to move to remain on the council. The demographic consultants will further develop the plan and come back before the council in April.

Other highlights, as submitted by the city:

Amendment for Rincon Consultants– authorized the City Manager to approve a contract amendment with Rincon Consultants, Inc. for the Gateway Annexation EIR for $52,500.

Fiscal impact analysis of Beechwood, Olsen–South Chandler Specific Plans–authorized the City Manager to initiate a Fiscal Impact Analysis of three geographic areas by appropriating $74,500 from the General Fund and authorizing the City Manager to execute a contract with David Taussig and Associates, consistent with the proposed scope of work, with the finding that a sole source professional services contract with David Taussig and Associates is in the best interest of the City; and authorize the City Manager and City Attorney to make any needed or desired non-substantive changes to the agreement that are fully consistent with Council direction.

Final map for the Paso Robles Horse Park–accepted and recorded Parcel Map PR 09-0105, and accepted the offer of dedication for Public Sewer, Waterline, Access, and Utility Purposes.

Third public hearing regarding transition to by-district council elections–received input and directed staff to bring back Draft Map E with the associated sequencing of Council District elections. Districts 3 and 4 would be up for election in 2020 and districts 1 and 2 would be up for election in 2022. In addition, staff is going to review the demographic information and census track boundaries to confirm that they allow for the inclusion of the Quail Run neighborhood in district 4 and boundary adjustments to square off the neighborhood.

Amended “Regional Commercial Zone” to allow laundromats–amended the Zoning Code to allow laundromats as a permitted use in the Regional Commercial zone.

Oak tree removal permit– approved removal of a Valley Oak at 1636 Spring Street, because it is in poor condition and likely will cause damage to the property if it were to remain, and approve the removal of the tree. Additionally, allowed for the waiver of the $600 application deposit based on the decline of the tree not being the fault of the current owner and to require the replanting of one native oak tree on site.

Mid-year budget report and adjustments–received the report and approved amending the budget for Fiscal Year 2018-19 by appropriating $80,000 from the Public, Education, and Governmental (PEG) Fund.

2018 Annual Report of the Implementation of the General Plan–approved the 2018 General Plan Annual Report, and directed staff to submit it to the California Department of Housing and Community Development.

This represents just a subset of the total actions by the Council. The full agenda can be found at https://www.prcity.com/AgendaCenter/ViewFile/Agenda/_03192019-192

The minutes will be available as part of the packet for the city council’s next regular meeting on Tuesday, April 2, 2019.

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About the author: News Staff

News staff of the Paso Robles Daily News wrote and edited this story from local contributors and press releases. Scott Brennan is the publisher of this newspaper and founder of Access Publishing. Connect with him on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, or follow his blog. He can be reached at scott@pasoroblesdailynews.com.