Council updates: VCE, elections and fire hydrants

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City moves forward with Valley Clean Energy

A representative of Valley Clean Energy returned to the podium, and council members voted to adopt a resolution requesting membership with the energy company run by local municipalities. City Manager John W. Donlevy Jr. said the resolution, which also directed staff to follow through on membership, was part of an ongoing process bringing Winters one step closer to joining VCE alongside Davis and Woodland.

VCE will provide an alternative to Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) to offer energy from cleaner and renewable sources to the city, although PG&E will still provide some of the power to citizens, and Winters residents will be able to opt out at will.

Mayor Bill Biasi questioned the exact amount of sustainable power to be provided by VCE and how good of a deal it was for the city and its residents.

VCE will officially accept Winters’ membership at its board meeting at 3 p.m. Thursday, Oct 10, to be held in the Woodland Council Chambers at 300 First St. in Woodland.

It’s election season in Winters!

Council members adopted a resolution to declare municipal elections to be held the same day as the California Primary Elections—Tuesday, March 3, 2020. Two council seats—those of Mayor Bill Biasi and Council Member Jesse Loren—will be up for contest following the completion of their four-year terms.

The resolution calls for elections to be supervised by the Yolo County Office of Elections. The filing period for candidates will officially begin Tuesday, Nov. 12 and run through Friday, Dec. 6. Biasi and Loren are both expected to run for re-election.

Where’s the fire…hydrant?

The Winters Police Department brought an item to the council that would reduce the distance from city fire hydrants where parking is prohibited from seven feet to five feet in either direction.  Sgt. Kelly McCoy gave a presentation to the council outlining the obstructive nature of the restrictions currently ordained in the municipal code, arguing they limited legal parking and were not necessary for safe access to fire hydrants.

Extension of lease agreement

Council members voted to extend the long-term lease on the Rodgers Building in Downtown Winters to Charlie Wallace. The office space houses businesses like the Winters Express and the Chamber of Commerce.

Wallace said he paid property taxes despite the city’s ownership, and joked about renting the space from the city. “It’s a lot different from paying my father for rent than writing a check to John Donlevy,” Wallace said.

Donlevy joked back that Wallace had almost always paid rent on time.

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