PARK IT: The City Council approved energy-saving measures for the Main Library parking lot. (Fabian Lewkowicz
PARK IT: The City Council approved energy-saving measures for the Main Library parking lot. (Fabian Lewkowicz

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 approved almost $900,000 in spending on its consent agenda Tuesday night, almost half of which went to purchase 10 new electric cars for city workers.

The vehicles are Toyota RAV4 EVs that come from the local Toyota Santa Monica. They will cost $442,437, and will replace 10 older models for which the Toyota company no longer provides parts and support, city officials said.

Toyota made RAV4 EVs at the beginning of the last decade, but stopped production between 2003 and 2012. The vehicles in the fleet from 2001 are no longer covered by the company, and City Hall struggles to find replacement parts, according to a report.

Although the vehicles cost $52,244 each, City Hall secured a $10,000 incentive for each vehicle by buying them before May 31, as well as an additional $22,500 in funding through state programs and funds.

The effective cost of each car will be $21,744, but City Hall is budgeting $442,437 for the contract, which takes into account the $10,000 incentive from the dealer.

The 10 vehicles comprise most of the $899,818 consent agenda.


Love the landlord


City Hall will pay $244,000 to lease space on the rooftop of the office building at 100 Wilshire Blvd. for police and fire radio systems for the next five years, the City Council decided Tuesday.

The site, owned by real estate company Douglas Emmett, has been home to police and fire radio equipment since 1987. It’s an attractive site because of its height, central location in Downtown and emergency power equipment to keep the radios going in the event of an outage.

The amendment would keep the lease through June 2017, and funding for each year will be subject to council approval.


Keep the lights on


Sometimes you have to spend money to save money, and the City Council decided to make just such an investment in the Main Library parking lot Tuesday evening.

The parking lot will be retrofitted with LED lights and motion sensor controls to minimize energy usage. The savings will pay for the cost of the $177,808 retrofit within four years, according to a city staff report.

Monthly electric bills for the garage cost roughly $6,050 in fiscal year 2012-13, and the new fixtures would save $39,075 each year, according to the report.

Yesco LLC, a Utah-based company, will complete the work, and City Hall will secure a loan from Southern California Edison’s On Bill Financing program to pay for the project. The loan will run just over 78 months at 0 percent interest.

Construction will take 30 days and will begin in mid-July, according to the report.


City video services


The City Council approved $35,573 to Granicus Inc. to provide video service management for municipal websites.

Granicus hosts and archives video footage of the City Council meetings, CityTV content and others. It also provides streaming services to over 1,000 other government agencies.

The new money will result in a two-year extension with the company, with future funding contingent on council approval. The company has provided service to City Hall since 2010.

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