Update on crime, sign featured at RP council
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By Jud Snyder  March 15, 2013 12:00 am


Rohnert Park’s City Council might have set a record for brevity Tuesday night in city hall. Most likely because only three members were present: Mayor Pam Stafford and members Gina Belforte and Amy Ahanotu. Absentees were vice-Mayor Joe Callinan and Councilman Jake Mackenzie. Gavel to gavel, the meeting took only 57 minutes.

The audience was small but individually large for a dozen well-muscled members of the semi-pro football team, the North Bay Rattlers, occupied seats. They just completed a 12-game undefeated season in their conference and were honored with a council resolution. The team will be playing another opponent Saturday afternoon March 23, at Rancho Cotate High School.
Brian Masterson, director of public safety, provided the council trio with a crime update. “There are not a lot of significant changes,” he said.

“We had two homicides in 2012, the year before didn’t have any, assaults and forcible rapes were slightly lower and burglaries also down slightly.”

His carefully kept statistics showed in 2012, Rohnert Park had the “best record in the last 10 years by a small margin.”

The council also got a preview of the new sign scheduled to replace the city owned Spreckels sign by the freeway where State Farm Drive ends on Commerce Blvd.

Veale Investments of Santa Rosa will build the new version and Tom Jackson, of Veale real estate, was on hand to demonstrate how it would look via PowerPoint.

It will be V-shaped with the bottom point of the V aimed westward. This will provide better visibility for southbound freeway traffic than the existing sign. Both sides will be fitted with sensors to adjust the lighting strength depending on the ambient light of day and night. It’ll be working 22 hours a day and dark only between 3-5 a.m. when traffic is minimal. Six seconds is the standard time period for each commercial, paid advertising or free public service time for non-profit agencies.

The council praised the look of the sign. Ahanotu wondered about using solar panels for power, and Belforte wondered about the look of the back of each panel. Jackson indicated his company’s looking into further changes to include remedies for both questions.

Because only three members were present, the council did not discuss the question of re-opening of Magnolia swimming pool in M Section. They’re still waiting for a perfect attendance, perhaps March 26, their next meeting.

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