Downtown business owners ask to support long-term parklets 

PASO ROBLES — During the Paso Robles City Council meeting on Tuesday, May 4, some business owners called in requesting the parklet program to be added as a future agenda item. 

The business owners who called own restaurants in Downtown Paso expressed their support for the parklet program. One said many customers still feel safer eating outside even if the State allows inside capacity to increase.

Parklets were previously approved by City Council to be used as-is until Nov. 1. 

Getting through this together, Paso Robles

At the end of the meeting, Councilmembers discussed whether or not to add parklets as a future agenda item.

“Staff has a lot on their hands—I think there is a lot of report work that needs to be done first before we make a decision,” said Councilman John Hamon.

All council members agreed to have anyone wanting to discuss parklet programs be directed to the Downtown Parking Advisory Commission and directed staff to research the technical aspects of long-term parklets. 

Council directed staff that they will not be ready to hear anything on parklets for at least 90 days.

Councilmembers unanimously adopted ordinance No. 1109, which reads:

“Ordinance of the City Council authorizing an amendment to the contract between the City Council of the City El Paso de Robles and the Board of Administration of the California Public Employees’ Retirement System, which authorizes an amendment to the CalPERS retirement contract for the City’s tier 1 miscellaneous POA members, and tier 1 and tier 2 police and fire safety members.”

Then, Ryan Cornell, Administrative Services Director, presented a report on the Enterprise Funds Budget Development for the 2021-2022 fiscal year.

The Enterprise Funds focuses on water, wastewater, and airport operations. 

Council approved the report with a 5-0 vote. 

Next, Council moved on to discuss consent agenda item 9: Adopt Ordinance No. 1110, Amending Section 14.16.020 of the Paso Robles Municipal Code regarding Sewer (Wastewater) Service Charges.

The item was requested by a resident to be removed from the consent agenda and discussed separately.

The resident had a few questions for staff and answered by Matt Thompson:

  • Has the city secured financing for the Recycled Water Distribution (RWD) system?
    • The cost of the City Sewer Fund is under the umbrella of City organization, meaning some funds come from the General Fund.
  • Do the new sewer rates hide any funding for the RWD system?
    • The City is pursuing financing from the State’s revolving fund loan program for the financing for the entire cost of the RWD. The City plans to sell the recycled water to pay back the loan. The loan is currently pending with the State.
  • How much of the irrigation project is complete or constructed?
    • The City has completed the design of the RWD system, and one segment will be on Union Road, which was just fully restored. While being restored, the City fronted the costs to install that portion of the RWD to prevent digging the road up again. The cost of installing this portion of the pipeline was $1,000,000, saving the City 30-40 percent by not having to dig the road again.

Councilman Steve Gregory motioned to approve Ordinance No. 1110, amending section 14.16.020, and was seconded by Fred Strong. The motion was approved with a 5-0 vote.

The next regular City Council Meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, May 18, at 6:30 p.m.