Two weeks ago, I came up before you and presented some of the inaccurate data contained in the City Manager's July 7, 2009 street sweeping recommendation. Since the City Manager disputed my facts, I brought copies of that recommendation so you can see the numbers for yourself.
At the last meeting the City Manager said (quote): "I don't believe we ever suggested $1.5 million as a revenue target for the street sweeping program"
This is in complete contradiction to what he wrote in the report, (quote) "it is estimated that approximately 48,000 violations will occur annually, yielding $1.512 million in citation fine revenue. The staff conservatively estimates that the revenues for the first fiscal year will be at least $700,000. This estimate is based on less than a full year's enforcement." (end quote) As you can see, this $1.5 MILLION is the number used to calculate the revenue projections.
Operational and Capital Costs ($ 135,000)
Citation Fine Revenue $1,512,000
Net General Fund Revenue $1,377,000
Operational and Capital Costs ($ 65,000)
Citation Fine Revenue $1,512,000
Net General Fund Revenue $1,447,000
So, what is the actual revenue from the enforcement program? Less than $300,000! That means the projection was off by more than 80%. An error that large is completely unacceptable and demands the Council's attention.
What is also disturbing about the "research" conducted by the city staff is that they observed hundreds of cars parked on the street street-sweeping day that had overnight parking passes displayed. That means hundreds of residents clearly have a parking issue at their residence and are currently being forced out of their homes on street-sweeping day now that street parking has become illegal. However, the City Council majority elected to ignore these hardships and proceeded to approve a program with NO exemptions. What guided the City Council majority's vote? The City Manager's simple argument of (quote) "A program with exemptions will generate less revenue than a program without" (end quote).
The City Manager has said that the vast majority of residents are complying with the ordinance and complaints have dropped. However, I would argue that "Compliance does not mean Acceptance"! And, residents know that the complaints are not being logged, so why bother calling to complain? Also, when the City Manager reported the number of complaints during a study session, he failed to include the residents contesting their tickets as "complaints." So, how can we believe any reports on complaints? If City Council members actually walked through Brea neighborhoods and spoke with Brea residents about the program, or hung out for a while in the Copy Room at my kids' school, they would certainly get a different response than the distorted picture presented by the City Manager!
Look, I'm not against clean streets or street sweeping. I'm against the city council majority imposing a tax on the residents for no reason other than generating revenue. You might recall that the report also stated that (quote) "The City currently sweeps public streets at twice the rate required by the NPDES" (end quote). In July 2009, Brea was already in compliance with the NPDES; currently Fullerton and Yorba Linda comply with NPDES and they have no parking restrictions on street-sweeping day. This is not about clean streets or the NPDES, and clearly the city will not be bringing in $1.512 million dollars in citation revenue as the City Manager projected. Still, I wonder what the City Council is going to do about this problem. Brea residents were not able to vote on this tax before it was implemented by the City, but residents will be able to vote on it in November when City Council members are up for re-election. Thank you.
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