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Council Par Deux

The San Luis Obispo City Council had a lot to get through yet again at their July 18, starting with closed session items regarding labor and lawsuit negotiations at 2 p.m.

Individual members could be forgiven for not recalling details about consent calendar items that came up for a unanimous vote at 6 p.m., but a raft of behind-the-scenes changes are in progress regarding city water and parking rates following an afternoon study session.

As the City’s Utilities Director Carrie Mattingly put it, “We’re going to be going over a lot of things that are probably boring to you and things that may be exciting to you.”

The water rate structure study session kicked off the first of several coming up after the effects of the California drought. The last time the City conducted such a review, she said, was in 2012.

On the main agenda for the evening, the Council heard the second portion of the San Luis Ranch project, which they approved, as widely expected, following hours of public comment at their previous meeting.

Development on the property was heavily contested 15 years ago under it’s previous title as the Dalidio Property but developer Gary Grossman was successful in a rebranding over the last two years labeling the site San Luis Ranch and lobbying for annexation into the City for the 580 homes he plans to build there.

Councilwoman Andy Pease again recused herself from the item due to her previous work  with RRM Design Group, leaving a 4-0 vote.

The project is slated to phase in over time 282 single-family units and 298 multi-family units. Of those a little under six percent will be classified as “affordable.”

Little noticed on the consent agenda was the City Parking Services request to send a Mobile License Plate Recognition System out for contract bids.

Several police departments in the County as well as the San Luis Obispo Sherriff have such systems installed on patrol cars for the purposes of gathering information prior to traffic stops or canvasing neighborhoods for possible witnesses or evidence following a crime.

However parking enforcement plans to use the devices to enforce time restrictions on SLO’s increasingly dwindling supply of public parking.

“Mobile license plate reader systems use image processing technology to identify vehicles through their license plates, and uses cameras to capture images of the front and/or rear of a vehicle,” reads the report.

Also voted on 5-0 by the Council in early session, language changes to enact a previously approved increase in hourly meter fees.

“These included the multi-year rate increases for metered locations and the parking structures for hourly rates, permits, and proxcards,” read that staff report, although the ordinance needed to be reintroduced following errors in the language around the timeline.


By Camas Frank

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