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January 17, 2019
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RP Downtown project underway ArtStart brings art to the RP Senior Center CalFresh clients get Feb. benefits early New laws on purchasing and concealing handguns Rohnert Park Council says we don’t need another agency RP has a new director of public safety Learn to docent at the SSU Fairfield Osborn Preserve USCIS presents free training on how to apply for citizenship Cotati Police Chief Parish swears in new officer Garber More than 276,000 Dreamers have renewed DACA 2018 local stories which made history Caltrans works toward decarbonizing California transportation Help save lives by donating blood El Camino graduates A stand-off with barricaded, suicidal woman ends safely in RP AG Becerra issues consumer alert on price gouging in fire-affected communities PG&E has a prediction model Baseball League receives donation from local motorcycle club Cougars beat Bulldogs Fresh faces on the CRPUSD board Newsom’s vision “cradle to career” CPI receives funding to offer counseling in schools Bad air quality cancels sports Official election winners as projected by the VOICE  RP swears in new council member Fun family Christmas events in Cotati Cougars’ season comes to a tearful sad conclusion Rohnert Park road updates Dr. Dominguez and Hawkins named as director and co-director for Hanna Institute University Elementary School to host Maker World at SSU Animal Shelter League of RP receives grant Cotati Council reshuffles seats The Community Voice endorses candidates DA’s office awarded DUI Prosecution Grant Rohnert Park kid joins TCU Operators ordered to pay for false advertising violations Frightful, fun, free Halloween activities Cougars crush Ukiah Election projected winners November 6, 2018  Sonoma Clean Power offers no-cost energy upgrades Rancho advances to semifinals RP’s n­ew Director of Public Safety Public invited to give input on Downtown RP Site School board candidates voice opinions Woman stabbed on west side of RP LandPaths connects people to protected land Tech High Girl's Soccer Undefeated champions! 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Sidewalk repair gets big break from City of RP

By: David Rheinhart
September 14, 2018

The Rohnert Park City Council met in an open session Tuesday to discuss a number of issues, most prominent of which was the proposed abolition of a $238 fee charged for encroachment permits. 

Maintenance responsibilities for sidewalk fronting a piece of property in Rohnert Park falls on the shoulders of the property owner, and to perform any work on a public space requires an encroachment permit. The fee currently charged is modest and goes towards paying for the inspection and insurance coverage for repairs that such a permit normally demands.

But for many single family homes the fee can seem like a significant barrier of entry to an already labyrinthine approval process. 

“For the first thirty years of existence this city used to fix the sidewalk for the residents and then we started making the residents pay for it,” said Joseph Callinan, vice mayor of Rohnert Park. “So anything to make it easier for them I agree with.” 

The city doesn’t seem to mind the lost revenue, either. Mary Grace, Director of Development Services within Rohnert Park, argued that it was far more important that residents would be easily able to fulfill their civic obligations than it was for the city to raise a negligible amount of money. Grace did not expect the abolition of the fee to significantly affect the city’s budget. 

“These people come to our counter because code enforcement has visited them first and told them to repair their sidewalk. They’re helping us by getting that sidewalk repaired.” Grace said. “The $238 fee is not big stakes in terms of the benefit from sidewalk repair.” 

Also on the schedule was the Rohnert Park Performing Arts Center yearly update. The center proposed their upcoming theater season which includes performances such as, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night, The Addams Family and BBQ Apocalypse. More information on the upcoming performances may be found on the Performing Arts Centers’ website. 

Finally, the city council discussed topics that were of special interest to the members and of critical need to the City of Rohnert Park. Transportation drew the most attention, most notably the state of the city’s bus stops. Council members Gina Belforte, Joseph Callinan and Amy Ahanotu all expressed dismay at the current state of Rohnert Park’s public transit system. 

“In some of our bus stops there’s no covering, there’s no seats. Some of them you walk out and its just plants. They’re in weird locations,” Belforte said. 

The next Rohnert Park City Council meeting is schedule for September 25th.