Long Beach, CA
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File #: 15-0287    Version: 1 Name: CM - Regional Funding Options for Stormwater Compliance Costs
Type: Agenda Item Status: Approved
File created: 3/23/2015 In control: City Council
On agenda: 4/7/2015 Final action: 4/7/2015
Title: Recommendation to authorize City Manager to participate in regional efforts to identify and develop regional funding options for stormwater compliance costs, including participation in the implementation of a regional City Managers Work Group work plan. (Citywide)
Sponsors: City Manager
Attachments: 1. 040715-C-8sr.pdf
TITLE
Recommendation to authorize City Manager to participate in regional efforts to identify and develop regional funding options for stormwater compliance costs, including participation in the implementation of a regional City Managers Work Group work plan.  (Citywide)
 
DISCUSSION
Staff is recommending that the City Council authorize the City Manager to support the efforts of a coalition of regional cities, led by the City Managers Work Group (Work Group), which have banded together to cooperatively address the stormwater unfunded mandate established by the State and Federal governments.
 
For the last several years, the City of Long Beach and many neighboring cities have been struggling to develop a plan to deal with the high costs of the 2012 National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) stormwater permit requirements, which include the need to fund the Watershed Management and Enhanced Watershed Management Programs. Water quality, including stormwater runoff/mitigation, has been a difficult and complex problem to address.  
 
In order to address this issue, the City previously supported the adoption of a Los Angeles County measure that would have helped fund the work. However, when the County Board of Supervisors did not set a general election on the ballot initiative, the City Managers of the Los Angeles Division of the League of Cities (League) requested that the League and California Contract Cities Association (CCCA) form a City Managers Work Group and Steering Committee of elected officials to work closely together to identify, review and advocate for funding options to address the millions of dollars required for local stormwater projects.
 
The Work Group directed the completion of a report, "Stormwater Funding Options - Providing Sustainable Water Quality Funding in Los Angeles County," to document the issues and to propose funding options. The Work Group adopted the report's recommendations and requested that the Steering Committee develop a draft work plan, budget, and funding formula to implement the report's recommendations, for review and approval by the Work Group.
 
The work plan includes potential State legislation to authorize revenue measures for local jurisdictions to be used to fund costs associated with water quality, as well as other potential local solutions.  When a proposed solution is identified, it will be presented to the City Council for discussion and official support and/ or action. Any revenue measure proposed will require voter approval, in all participating jurisdictions. Authorizing the City's participation in the Work Group's work plan will only allow the City to support regional efforts to create legislation and advocate for State authorization to pursue revenue measures.
 
The Steering Committee determined that a budget of approximately $202,000 would be required to implement the work plan. Work plan costs include administrative support, legal research and Steering Committee activities. To fund the work plan, the Work Group was asked to recommend and approve a funding formula, should cities choose to participate. The recommended funding formula was based on a sample of 25 cities likely to participate. The base amount attempts to spread costs equally to the large, medium and small cities by having two-thirds of the costs supporting the base amount.  The remaining one-third of the costs are then adjusted by population and square miles of the participating community.
 
The City's share was initially estimated at $19,504, based on 25 cities participating in the regional effort proposed by the Work Group. As of March 16, 2015, the preliminary ballot resulted in 53 cities indicating that they will participate. Due to the increased number of participating cities, the "per city" cost decreased from initial estimates. The cost for Long Beach's participation is currently estimated at $11,000.  
 
These efforts will allow for upstream cities to participate in funding options, including regional or state-wide revenue measures, to help address the struggles all cities have with meeting stormwater water quality requirements. Our support of the upstream cities participation in these efforts and their proactive approach to water quality issues is important because the majority of the water quality problem in Long Beach comes from the upstream cities. Their efforts to address these issues should be lauded and supported as they will go a long way towards helping the City's water quality.  
 
This matter was reviewed by Deputy City Attorney Amy Webber on March 16, 2015 and by Budget Management Officer Victoria Bell on March 19, 2015.
 
TIMING CONSIDERATIONS
Approval of this recommendation is requested on April 7, 2015, in order to provide the Work Group with the funds necessary to proceed with the implementation of the work plan.
 
FISCAL IMPACT
The City's share of costs to support the implementation of the City Managers Work Group work plan is currently estimated at $11,000. This is a non-recurring cost in FY 15 and will be managed within current appropriation in the General Fund (GF) in the Public Works Department (PW). There is no local job impact associated with this recommendation.
 
SUGGESTED ACTION
Approve recommendation.
 
 
Respectfully Submitted,
 
 
 
 
APPROVED:
 
PATRICK H. WEST
CITY MANAGER