VACAVILLE — The City Council on a 4-0 vote this week approved three agreements to expand the scope of work for the city’s General Plan update.
Maureen Carson, director of community development, told the council Tuesday that responding to the large number of public comments on the draft environmental impact report for the General Plan update will necessitate more time than originally anticipated. She said so much is required that the scope of work on the update needed to be changed to reflect the added work by the main consulting firm, The Planning Center/DC&E.
The council approved no more than $70,000 to cover the expenses to respond to the more than 30 comments, some of which were in depth and highly detailed, Carson said.
Those responses will become part of the final environmental impact report, which should be released in June and will be a part of the new General Plan.
The council also approved up to $25,000 to hire the nonprofit Center for Economic Research to conduct an economic development review of the General Plan update to ensure that the new plan will allow the city to reach its economic goals in the coming decades.
Carson said that while there was no open bidding for the contract, the Center for Economic Research came recommended and has a reputation for conducting such reviews. She also said the Planning Department wanted a third party for the review, rather than one of the subconsultants already working on the General Plan update.
The third part of the vote was for a Housing Element for the General Plan, which Carson said will be handled by the current consultants.
The housing element is required by law, Carson said, but would be done after the General Plan. It contains the city’s policies and programs related to construction of new housing and the conservation and rehabilitation of existing housing, and the availability of public services for lower-income households and disadvantaged households, according to a staff report.
No more than $60,000 was approved to pay The Planning Center/DC&E for that document, which is due to the state in January 2015, Carson said.
Vice Mayor Mitch Mashburn was not present Tuesday at the meeting.
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