The City of Portola held a regularly scheduled council meeting on Wed., Aug. 23 to discuss renewing a contract with Plumas County Sheriff’s Office for the upcoming year, along with a resolution to enroll the city direct charges on county property tax bills and thoughts on a dog park.
Mayor Pro Tem Pat Morton reported that she had attended meetings of LAFCo, Beckwourth Fire District, and the Transportation Commission since the last meeting of city hall.
Mayor Bill Powers also attended the LAFCo and Transportation meetings.
Interim City Manager Jon Kennedy reported that the city continued to make headway on collecting the many months of unpaid water bills, with Project GO continuing to provide payment assistance for qualifying local residents. “There are fifteen bills paid now, bringing the total to nearly $31,000. That averages about $2,000 per person,” Kennedy said.
Kennedy continued, saying “We signed a contract several months ago for the organization that is putting in the electric vehicle chargers in the city. It started with two chargers. There was some additional funding to the organization, so they are trying to revamp the program to add a few more.”
Kennedy explained that the city was still working through ideas to add more capacity to the charging station without taking too much space. “It will be the only place in the county that has an electric car charger,” Kennedy added.
It was also noted that the City was already preparing for the snowy season, and that the public should be aware that the City of Portola will be towing vehicles parked inappropriately this year to keep unhindered snow removal a top priority. “We will be very tenacious to ensure roads stay clear and working with our citizens to help them get their cars off the road so we can keep them clear,” Kennedy said.
City Finance Officer Susan Scarlett opened the item, explaining that the resolution was an annual event to allow the city to direct charges from the fire tax on the county property tax bills. “This particular assessment is not tiered,” Scarlett said. “This years’ total is $19,615.44 on 1,546 parcels. We have to do this because it is not a regular property tax.”
$130,000 for law enforcement services
With another annual item for council, council briefly discussed the 2023-2024 contract between the City of Portola and Plumas County Sheriff’s Office (PCSO) for law enforcement services, with the city to compensate PCSO in the amount of $130,000 for those services.
Council unanimously passed the item by roll call vote.
Councilmember Leah Turner had brought up the idea of creating a dog park in the city in the past, and Kennedy explained that the matter had been brought to the agenda as a discussion item that evening.
“The purpose of this discussion is to see whether council would like to pursue further planning with public works on cost and location for this project,” Turner said. “My first thought was to build one near Baldwin Park, but now with the road work near Joy Way there is no parking on the street.”
Turner also brought up the idea of creating one off of Hwy. 70 near the old veteran’s hall or near the west end park so that people travelling through would be able to enjoy the location with their pets as well.
Turner proposed an estimated cost of between $10,000 to $15,000 for the project, including fencing and gates.
After some further discussion about how much staff time might be needed to care for a dog park and potential locations, council adjourned the meeting.