Modesto City Council Watch (4/23/13)

kvaline@modbee.comApril 22, 2013 

— The Modesto City Council meets today at 5:30 p.m. in the basement chamber of Tenth Street Place, 1010 10th St. The council is expected to:

• Accept an $884,936 federal Bicycle Transportation Account grant for phase six of the Virginia Corridor, which is the city's conversion of a former railroad corridor into a trail for bicyclists, walkers and joggers. The trail starts at College Avenue near Modesto Junior College, and the city has completed about two miles of the four-mile trail. Phase six will extend the trail by about three-quarters of a mile, from Bowen to Woodrow avenues. Phase six is expected to cost about $3 million. Besides the BTA grant, the city has $2 million in other federal funds for phase six. Work could go out to bid this summer, and construction could start by late summer or early fall. Phase six could open by summer 2014.

Accept the work by Sprinturf for the purchase and installation of synthetic turf for three soccer fields at Mary E. Grogan Community Park. The project cost $1 million. The city is building the park next to Enochs High School. Phase one of the 42-acre park will include seven soccer fields, four of them natural grass. The city expects to hold a grand opening ceremony June 1 for phase one of the park. The three synthetic fields will be available for play soon after that. The grass fields are not expected to be ready for use until fall.

Award a $50,000 contract to Youth for Christ to provide street outreach and an intake coordinator for the Police Department's Project Ceasefire. The program targets gang members 14 to 24 years of age and offers them the opportunity to better their lives and give up gangs. The program provides gang members with help with their education, employment training, tutoring, mental health services and paid work experience.

• Accept a $535,500 federal grant to install emergency vehicle detection systems at intersections with signals and upgrade EVD systems where they already exist. The EVD systems allow police and fire responding to emergencies to switch signals to green as they enter the intersection. The new EVD systems and the upgrades will prevent motorists who have bought devices over the Internet from pre-empting traffic signals. The grant requires a $61,500 match from the city. The city has 173 intersections with signals, and 127 of them have EVD systems. The project does not apply to intersections with signals on Highways 108 and 132 within the city.

• Receive a progress report from the consulting and accounting firm of Moss-Adams, the city's auditors. Moss-Adams' latest project was a reorganization study of the city. Some of the study's conclusions included looking into turning ownership and maintenance of city trees over to resi- dents, finding ways for department heads to work better to- gether and reducing overtime for some city departments.

• Consider spending about $200,000 for a study that would examine the benefits of relocating much of the city's Sutter Avenue waste-water treatment plant to the city's Jennings Road waste-water treatment facility.

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