Modesto considers $119,300 to revamp website

The Modesto City Council on Tuesday is expected to approve spending $119,300 to revamp the city’s website. A city report states that while full of useful information, the site is viewed by many as a “congested array of buttons, links, graphics and headers that users are finding frustrating to navigate and difficult to know where to find the information they need.”

Modesto is looking to hire CivicPlus for the renovation. The agreement calls for paying CivicPlus $32,300 annually for three years for the upgrades, hosting the site, and support and maintenance. The city would pay the company $11,200 in the fourth and in the fifth year for a total cost of $119,300 over five years, according to the report.

The report states it will take 24 to 27 weeks to revamp

In other action, the council is expected to:

▪  Direct City Manager Jim Holgersson to sign a memorandum of understanding among Modesto, Stanislaus County and the Veterans Foundation of Stanislaus County to develop a Veterans Center. Modesto would provide $80,000 annually for 10 years from its general fund for the center. A city report states the county has indicated contributing $313,000 annually and the foundation is pledging an annual contribution of $125,000. The center would serve as a meeting place for veterans groups and a one-stop location for services. Officials are looking at vacant shopping centers as possible locations.

▪  Hold a public hearing and approve the city’s most recent annual report detailing how it has spent U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development funds to revitalize neighborhoods and improve community facilities, for economic development and affordable housing, and to address homelessness. The city is required to submit a Consolidated Annual Performance Evaluation Report to HUD. A city report states Modesto receives about $2.6 million annually from HUD.

▪  Meet in closed session to discuss possibly entering in negotiations to purchase property located between Ninth and 10th streets and E and F streets. The property is owned by Victor and Iris Martinez, trustees. County assessor’s records state the property includes a commercial building and is assessed at $1.6 million for tax purposes.

▪  Meet in closed session to discuss with legal counsel a federal lawsuit filed in August 2014 in which Jack Smith claims two Modesto police officers beat him while he was handcuffed and on the ground. The lawsuit alleges the officers broke Smith’s jaw and inflicted other injuries. Smith is represented by San Francisco attorney Sanjay Schmidt. He has represented clients in three cases against Turlock, Ceres and Modesto police and settled them for $472,500.

The council meets at 5:30 p.m. in the basement chambers of Tenth Street Place, 1010 10th St.

Kevin Valine: 209-578-2316