Thursday, September 3, 2009

Possible conflict keeps Aceves off new library committee


September 2, 2009 7:14 AM

A possible conflict of interest prevented Goleta Mayor Roger Aceves from being appointed to a newly established City Council ad hoc library committee Tuesday night.

Because Debby Aceves, the mayor's wife, is the Goleta representative to the Santa Barbara County Library Advisory Committee, the council did not take the recommendation from council staff to appoint Mr. Aceves to the committee, created Tuesday night to aid the financially struggling library system.

Mayor Pro Tempore Eric Onnen and Councilwoman Margaret Connell were the two councilmembers appointed to the committee.

Other business handled by the council at the meeting included authorization to establish a multi-way stop-controlled intersection at Los Carneros Road and Calle Real.

"One ... intersection that has shown an increased collision rate is Los Carneros Road and Calle Real," said Goleta Civil Engineer Marti Schultz. "One way to mitigate this is the placement of stop signs."

Mr. Schultz said stop signs are the immediate answer to the intersection's problems, but added that other options may be explored in the future.

"This intersection does meet the warrants for the establishment of a stop-controlled intersection," he said. "We think ... it might be feasible to do a roundabout at this intersection."

The council also authorized the city manager to execute a professional services agreement with local firm Bengal Engineering, Inc. for geotechnical engineering and investigation and design services for the San Jose Creek Capacity Improvement Project for an amount not to exceed $524,074.

Program Manager Rosemarie Gaglione said Bengal Engineering is highly qualified for the job.

"Their reputation is that they're very creative," she said. "Final design could begin in late February."

Councilman Michael Bennett had additional ideas for the project.

"I would like to ... put a bicycle path underneath Hollister Avenue," said Mr. Bennett. "I would surely like to see council concurrence."

Mrs. Connell expressed that she also supports a bike path, and Ms. Gaglione said that "it's a great time to try to put that in there."

Councilman Edward Easton recused himself from the item, explaining that his home is approximately 400 feet from the creek and the project could affect his home's property value.

At the next regularly-scheduled meeting of the council on Sept. 15, continued discussion about the purchase of a new City Hall will occur, and public comment is sought.

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