City Manager Steve Schwabauer's
Friday, September 23, 2016
Station award: Fire Chief Rooney was notified this week that Fire Station 2 received a National Fire Station Design Award. Fire Station 2 competed with every other fire station designed and built within the last year in the United States. There are four individual categories: Career Fire Department, Combination Fire Department, Volunteer Fire Department and Fire Training Facilities, with four types of awards – gold, silver, bronze, honorable mention – within each category. Lodi competed in the Career Fire Department category and received a silver award. Each fire station designed is judged by respected architects from across the country on form, function, use of space, energy efficiency, durability, addressing fire service specific needs, integrating fire communications and technical systems, building mechanical systems along with firefighter safety and amenities in mind.
Mary McGrath Architects, Lodi firefighters and Gary Wiman of Public Works worked as a team in the design. This design team should take great pride in their work and accomplishments after receiving this national award against such steep competition. Along with receiving this prestigious fire service award, Lodi Fire Station 2 will be featured in an upcoming issue of Firehouse Magazine, a monthly publication that focuses on the American Fire Service.
Swing and a miss: Staff and Council invested countless hours in negotiating through multiple snags to enable PG&E to locate a Compressed Air Energy Storage Facility at White Slough that could have provided significant funding for public services into the future. Unfortunately staff received word this week that after completing its feasibility study PG&E has determined to abandon the project. Though we are disappointed the project is dead, we have every reason to be proud of the efforts we put into finding public services funding solutions and will continue to take to the plate at every opportunity in the years to come.
CalPERS comes clean: CalPERS’ Chief Investment Officer conceded to the Board this week that the funding gap is expected to widen in the coming years, according to Bloomberg News: “The California Public Employees’ Retirement System … faces a widening funding gap for the foreseeable future as its returns lag behind obligations to retirees,” Chief Investment Officer Ted Eliopoulos said Monday, “The gap grows over time,” Eliopoulos said during a presentation to the CalPERS board. “If we return less than 7.5 percent along this path, it gets wider and sooner.” This is in stark contrast to its statements in its member newsletters that continue to tout its long-term rate of return.
Broadcast: A City-owned video component failed during Wednesday’s City Council meeting, which resulted in the meeting not being broadcast on Comcast. The meeting is available on Granicus, although portions of the recording were interrupted as staff attempted to troubleshoot the problem. The problem was corrected on Thursday, and staff next week will ensure the fix will not affect the Granicus recording. We also will be exploring replacing the component, which is nearly seven years old, in the coming weeks as well as other upgrades to the video system.
Police restraint: In a matter of three days, police twice responded to calls of suicidal persons with firearms. The first, near Needham School on Monday, was well-publicized. On Wednesday, a man in the 900 block of Wimbledon Drive called police and indicated he would attempt a “suicide by cop.” Beckman School was on lockdown for two hours until the man was talked into walking out of his house. Lodi Unified staff sent the city manager an email thanking our police officers for their professionalism.