Big Blue Bus is in the process of leasing tires for its coaches. (Photo by Daniel Archuleta)
Big Blue Bus is in the process of leasing tires for its coaches. (Photo by Daniel Archuleta)

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 — Leasing cars is one thing, but the Big Blue Bus breaks it down even further.

The City Council is expected to approve $666,991 to buy and lease tires for Santa Monica’s transit vehicles.

That amount includes $390,000 to buy existing tires off of Goodyear and putting an initial $271,991 down on a new contract with Michelin.

Between the buy out and up to five years leasing from Michelin — one year set with four additional options — City Hall could put up to $3,432,462 into making sure the Big Blue Buses have a smooth, safe ride.

Because it’s a lease, the amount of the contract is based on the total number of miles put on the tires each year, which staff estimates at roughly 5.8 million, plus a 10 percent contingency for accidents, curb damage and other unforeseen issues.

It also saves roughly $1.5 million over the five-year term compared to doing the work in house, according to the staff report.

Out of 140 vendors who got wind of the contract, only 11 took out bid documents and two turned them in.

Michelin was the cheapest, saving $139,178 over its competitor even with the Goodyear buy out included.

The tires are the biggest ticket item on the $1,814,244 consent agenda.


The path most traveled


Zooming down the Beach Bike Path will get more comfortable after the City Council approves funding for signage and striping down the three-mile stretch of the Santa Monica coastline.

This may feel like deja vu.

The City Council approved funding for the work in May 2012, intending for the company Excel Paving to finish resurfacing a nearby parking lot and then begin work on the bike path.

Excel asked for an extra 5 percent markup to hire a subcontractor and other legal requests that forced City Hall to backpedal. Instead, city staff went back out to bid, ultimately choosing Sterndahl Enterprises Inc.

Sterndahl was the second-lowest bidder at a total of $362,481, including a contingency. The lowest bidder didn’t meet the licensing requirements for the job.


Booking the date


Officials with the Community and Cultural Services Department are pushing for a new software system to replace one that will be jettisoned by its maker next year.

Software company The Active Network will no longer support a reservation and recreation management system called Safari that the department has used since 2003.

Instead, the company is putting forward ActiveNet, a platform that could include reservation and enrollment functions for park meeting rooms, tennis courts and ballfields as well as registration for programs and classes.

It could also supplant the separate software systems used for the Annenberg Community Beach House and Reed Park Tennis Center.

Switching over to the new system will cost $188,825 this fiscal year.


Service truck


Staff recommends a $180,906 payment to South Bay Ford for a service truck to take care of buses that have broken down while on the road.

The new truck, powered by natural gas, would replace another one that’s been used for the last 10 years to do minor service repairs and push the large 40- and 60-foot buses out of the road.

City Hall received three bids on the project, but only one on the specific truck bed picked out by city officials. That narrowed the choices to South Bay Ford.


Seismic retrofits


The City Council will get the chance to approve $150,000 to finish a now $4.6 million project to bring City Hall up to modern seismic standards.

This is the fifth contract change associated with the project. Workers found in many cases that the original plans for the building didn’t match up with reality because past remodels have added or removed elements.

That can include wiring, much-needed structural beams or code-required fire separation between spaces.

With the new contract change, staff expect work to be done by February 2013.


Managing the homeless


The City Council is expected to approve another $146,760 to Bowman Systems, LLC for a homeless management software system that the Human Services Division has relied upon for five years.

Bowman Systems offers ServicePoint, a system that gives City Hall a complete view of the services provided for the homeless within Santa Monica. That accounting is critical not only for City Hall’s own records, but to regional agencies and policies that impact Santa Monica’s efforts to work with its homeless population.

The extra money will go toward continued maintenance, licensing, data integration and an extension of ServicePoint through June 30, 2015.


Big Brother’s watching


When Gov. Jerry Brown, the legislature and the courts came together to dissolve the Santa Monica Redevelopment Agency, they left in its wake a sucking sound that another $78,281 is about to fall into.

The City Council, in its role as the redevelopment Successor Agency, is asked to approve an almost $80,000 extension for its contract with accounting firm Macias, Gini and O’Connell to prepare two state-mandated reviews of the assets that remain from the Redevelopment Agency.

The first relates directly to housing stock held by the former Redevelopment Agency, and the second deals with everything else with the agency.

The extra cash comes on top of the $675,000 contract with MGO which covers various city departments, including the Successor Agency.


Close the door


The City Council is expected to approve contracts with two companies to service doors on public properties.

Commercial Door and Specialty Doors + Automation will receive no more than $40,000 in the first year to fix hand-cranked and automatic rolling steel service doors, garage doors and speed doors.

There are roughly 15 jobs a year on doors of various makes and models, and they must be completed quickly to keep unwanted visitors out, according to the staff report.

Funding for two additional years is contingent on council approval.

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