Editor’s note: This story is part of an ongoing series that tracks the city’s expenditures appearing on upcoming Santa Monica City Council consent agendas. Consent agenda items are routinely passed by the City Council with little or no discussion from elected officials or the public. However, many of the items have been part of public discussion in the past.

CITY HALL — The City Council is expected to award two contracts worth almost $4.4 million on Tuesday to get the ball rolling on street improvements on the east end of town.

The construction company All American Asphalt and management firm Black & Veatch were selected to complete the work, which includes new lighting, landscaping, sidewalk improvements and bicycle “sharrows” on 20th Street and Cloverfield Boulevard between Interstate 10 and Pico Boulevard.

City Hall received 61 applications for the construction portion and 31 applications for the construction management contract. The $4,013,053 was awarded to All American Asphalt, and Black & Veatch received the $385,670 management contract.

Both have worked with City Hall in the past.

The $4.4 million job represents most of Tuesday’s $6.99 million consent agenda.

High quality H2O

The City Council has often reiterated its goal of making Santa Monica self-sufficient in its water production, and Tuesday night it’ll have the opportunity to put its money where its mouth is.

City officials are seeking $871,856 for a Sustainable Water Master Plan, an effort to figure out how to get all of the water residents and businesses need from local sources and review fees for water, wastewater and water infrastructure.

At present, Santa Monica wells produce 72 percent of the water that the city needs. The remaining 28 percent is purchased through the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California, and comes from the Colorado River and Sacramento Delta.

The master plan will point to ways to increase the supply of locally-sourced water and decrease the demand in order to cover the imported water by analyzing supply, forecasted demand, new water sources and the condition of the infrastructure used to get water to people.

Kennedy/Jenks Consultants, a California-based company, has been suggested for the contract. Five proposals were received and only two teams were invited to make a presentation before a panel of city officials.

Pico Branch Library

City Hall believes it’s found the construction management firm ready to oversee work on the Pico Branch Library, a long-awaited development on the east end of town.

Staff selected Swinerton Management and Consulting to head up the project out of the 38 firms that responded to city officials’ call for qualifications.

Swinerton’s bid of $698,200 came in second lowest out of the five top candidates, but the firm has also built or managed the construction of over $260 million of library and related government projects in the last 10 years.

The total contract amount is $768,020.

Gearing up

City officials are asking for $450,000 to outfit CityTV with new production equipment, just in time for election season.

Local election programming will be produced at CityTV’s new facility at 1654 19th St. this fall. While the new digs are finally finished and customized for the station’s use, it needs new cameras as well as control room, audio, graphics and lighting equipment.

The newly-outfitted studio is expected to save money on studio rental costs and also make participating in election programming more convenient because candidates can come to a facility that’s close to home.

Programming at CityTV is produced in partnership with Santa Monica College, the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District, city departments and local nonprofits.

Bus maintenance

The City Council is expected to approve another $419,000 on transmission repair and vacuums for the Big Blue Bus.

The Big Blue Bus uses ZF transmissions in approximately 31 percent of its fleet. With that in mind, City Hall recommends hiring HD Industries to provide overhaul services for that specific transmission for one year at $200,000.

The BBB also needs new vacuums to keep its new, larger buses clean. Staff expects it to cost $219,000.

The current vacuums are not only wearing out, they’re actually incapable of cleaning the 60-foot articulating buses that were recently added to the BBB fleet. As such, they’re not getting the job done on the 170 buses that are cleaned by BBB employees every day.

Staff recommends Peterson Hydraulics, Inc. for the contract to fix up the vacuums.

Utility Users Tax

City staff are looking to renew an $85,000 contract with a company that audits certain taxes to ensure that municipalities are getting all of the money they’re entitled to.

MuniServices, LLC has worked with City Hall since 1992 to help recover taxes on things like electricity, natural gas, telephone, cable and wastewater services that do not reach the city either by accident or fraud.

MuniServices, LLC has helped generate $3.4 million in recovered revenue for city coffers in the last four years alone.

The company requires a flat fee of $85,000 as well as up to 25 percent of the audit findings.


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