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 — Anyone who does housework on a regular basis knows that keeping clean can be a hard, sometimes pricey task.

City Hall will feel that pinch Tuesday.

The City Council is likely to approve a three-year, $1.215 million contract for custodial supplies needed to keep municipal buildings neat and tidy.

The cleaners come from four different companies — Clean Source, Empire Cleaning Supply, Royal Corporation and Staples — and will replace the city’s Central Warehouse, which used to be the one-stop-shop for cleaning supplies.

The warehouse closed in May.

Each of the products purchased under the contracts has been previously approved by the Office of Sustainability and the Environment and meet City Hall’s environmental standards.

Only $405,000 of the cash will be paid out from this year’s budget. The rest will be contingent on future council approval.

The purchase is the biggest on the otherwise conservative $1,012,187 consent agenda.


Paving the way


The City Council will consider a contract with Alabama-based Vulcan Materials to purchase the asphalt needed to patch potholes and roadways throughout the city.

The Department of Public Works used roughly 3,529 tons of asphalt, the substance used to make roads, to patch 564 sidewalk problem spots, 1,316 potholes, 61,406 square feet of surface issues and 12 alleys in the 2011-12 fiscal year.

The price of the material has gone up as the price of oil increases, and City Hall moved to lock in a contract. Of the 914 vendors that were notified and 16 that received the bidding documents, only Vulcan submitted a bid.

The contract will cost $155,000 this year, and the three-year total will be $405,000.


Banking on Wells Fargo


City Hall is poised to leave Bank of America, its bank for 13 years, for greener pastures.

Staff is recommending that the City Council approve a five-year, $375,000 contract with Wells Fargo to handle municipal deposits, online and mobile payments, payroll and a host of other services.

Wells Fargo beat out six other competitors to manage Santa Monica’s $600 million in deposits and like amount of payments to other vendors.

According to the staff report, Wells Fargo had a better online banking system, a superior purchasing card program and an overall lower cost to City Hall over the course of five years.

Roughly $133,050 will be paid this fiscal year. The rest will be contingent on council approval.


Keep trucking


Recycling: Good for the bottle, good for the can, not so great for the trucks.

City Hall wants to spend another $127,183 to replace three “bin trucks,” vehicles that pick up trash and recyclables throughout Santa Monica.

The new vehicles will come from Wondries Fleet Group, one of two bids that were received for the project.

Although the bid requested small-size, alternative fuel trucks, neither of the two competing companies could produce them because they’re currently not available in the industry.

Larger trucks don’t fit into smaller garages and areas.


Testing the dirt


Costs for a $47 million park are about to go up.

Staff wants to extend a contract with Koury Engineering & Testing, a firm providing testing services for what’s now known as Palisades Garden Walk Park after it became clear that grading and other earthwork operations were going to take a bit longer than originally anticipated.

The firm is already contracted to test the soil underneath the future park to determine how to build the park on top of the dirt and other materials already there.

According to the staff report, workers hit a snag when they built the retaining walls for the park and other tasks were identified that were never included in the original scope of work, like trench compaction testing, testing of planting topsoil and work under Main Street.

The extra time will cost $86,460, bringing the full cost of the contract up to $155,030.




Staff recommends two firms split a three-year $225,000 contract to provide waterproofing services for municipal buildings.

Surfside Restoration & Waterproofing and Allstate Engineering will split the work, which involves performing water tests; applying coatings, grouts, sealants and other repellents; and repairing concrete and other materials to keep water out.

According to the staff report, City Hall receives 20 calls for waterproofing each year, too much for one company to handle in a timely fashion.

The City Council is only expected to approve $75,000 of the total contract amount this year. Future funding will be conditional on council approval.


Biannual survey


Yes, the election is over, but Santa Monicans can still expect phone calls from strangers asking what they think about their city.

City Hall is gearing up for the 2013 Resident Survey, a biannual event that officials use to gauge what’s important to their constituents.

The public opinion firm Fairbank, Maslin, Maullin, Metz & Associates — which shortens its name to FM3 — has been put forward to conduct the study for $30,495, the same price it commanded for the 2011 study.

FM3 also did research work in 2008 for the Utility Users Tax and June 2010 to test the waters for a ballot measure that would provide extra funding for city services, Measure Y.

FM3 beat out 22 other companies that competed for the project.


A little bit different …


The City Council will also be asked to approve new revenue to the tune of $107,350 on Tuesday night.

The bulk of that cash comes from the renewal of the lease for Rusty’s Surf Ranch, a long-time tenant of the Santa Monica Pier that won its right to stay in place in August.

Rusty’s will bring in a base rent of $100,950 to the city, which will increase to $200,000 per year by Oct. 1, 2014. The base rent could be reduced up to $315,000 over the next two year if the ownership applies for rent credits for work done to spruce up the 18-year-old restaurant.

They have a lot planned.

According to the staff report, Rusty’s owners plan to include a second-floor dining deck to replace what’s now a canvas awning, and possibly a rooftop patio instead of a second-story dining deck in the rear.

The kitchen is also up for expansion, and restroom facilities, HVAC systems and the interior will all see improvements.

The other $6,400 in new cash is expected to come from the coin-operated telescopes and binoculars on the Santa Monica Pier and in Palisades Park.

The telescopes, or similar devices, have been available on the pier and in the park since the 1940s. The current vendor’s license agreement expired in May, and has been on a month to month lease since.

Staff is recommending Fare Share Enterprises, a New York company, to take over the lease. The company will handle the telescopes and binoculars for three years, and provide 50 percent of the gross revenues to the city.

The viewers are recommended to cost 50 cents.




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