Many good things were accomplished during my four-years on City Council, and I am going to focus on what I believe are some of the key highlights from my last year as your Mayor:
We have thus far successfully navigated the COVID-19 Pandemic. Our Hercules City Hall is the only City Hall in the County which never closed and I want to again thank our employees for making that possible.
We have engaged with the Community on policing and social justice issues and I am proud of our efforts including the City Council having asked our City Manager and Police Chief to conduct two facilitated Town Hall meetings, which went extraordinarily well, and for the Council having dedicated a special meeting to the concerns.
The more than three year expansion and upgrade of the joint Pinole/Hercules Wastewater Treatment plant was completed in 2020.
Resurfacing of the Refugio Park tennis courts was completed.
Streetlight replacement was completed in the Hercules by the Bay and Refugio Heights neighborhoods.
A major energy retrofit project including solar with a company called Engie for a variety of City facilities was approved and is now underway.
The development of the City’s first Hazard Mitigation Plan and General Plan Safety Element update was started and is now nearing completion.
The first phase of the Bayfront mixed-use transit-oriented Bayfront project was completed with the 172-unit Exchange opening with the second phase to be completed in May, 2021, and a third phase to start in 2021.
Entitlements were approved for the nearly 600 unit Hilltown community.
Construction started on the Willow Avenue Auto Service Center and Self-storage project.
The new Safeway and related retail center will just miss their planned 2020 opening and will open in mid-January.
The City refinanced bonds in July related to the Library and those savings were front-loaded in the first two years to assist the City in navigating the unknown impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Council also responded to new State mandates and adopted ordinances addressing street vending and Accessary Dwelling Units to bring us into compliance with State law.
The Council has also continued to be committed to ensuring that the City of Hercules lives within its means and that we are fiscally prudent, meeting base service needs, and also investing in capital, key designations of funds to meet future needs, and to growing our reserves.
So while 2020 was a much more challenging year than anyone could have imagined, and we will continue to be challenged into 2021, we have seen a tremendous amount of resiliency and commitment from the community demonstrated time and time again.
As such, it has been a great pleasure to have served as Mayor during a particularly trying time, and I would like to, once again, thank everyone who supported me in this role, and I wish the new City Council and the community all the best as I leave office!
STAY SAFE & STAY STRONG