Council orders weed abatement

City has list of more than 2,600 parcels to address
By: Sena Christian, The Press Tribune
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Is there a weed problem in Roseville?


On paper it looks like there might be, but the increase number of properties on the city’s weed abatement list is mostly due to large parcels being split into individual lots.


The Roseville City Council unanimously approved this year’s weed abatement program, following a public hearing during Wednesday's meeting with no comments from local property owners. The city previously declared all weeds, dirt, rubbish or rank growths a public nuisance.


Each year, all vacant parcels are identified and property owners are notified of their obligation to maintain adequate fire breaks as a fire protection and prevention measure.


“I don’t remember us ever having this many properties,” said Councilman John Allard. “This is like 24 pages, two columns. Is this a lot more than usual?"


About 110 parcels were listed on each page, for about 2,640 total.


“The largest factor is that a lot of large parcels in the West (Roseville Specific) Plan have been broken up,” Fire Marshal Patrick Chew told the Press Tribune.


In previous years, the weed abatement list included large developments before developers had split them off from one another. Chew said the magnitude of the weed problem throughout Roseville has been about the same for the past three or four years.


He said the problem could also be partly attributed to foreclosures.


Owners are given an opportunity to abate hazards, but if they fail to do so by a pre-determined date specified by the Roseville Fire Department, abatement costs are billed to the property owners. If the owner fails to pay the bill, the city places a lien on the property and money owed is reimbursed through the property tax collection process.


Also during the meeting, Allard suggested the council consider making a proclamation in support of continued funding for the Auburn State Recreation Area, which brings in 1 million visitors a year. The economic impact of the 35,000-acre park is $2 billion annually, he said.


“Some of that ends up in Roseville because people look for places to stay, and eat and shop,” Allard said.


After discussing how the Roseville Chamber of Commerce recently approved a similar item, the Council asked city staff to put this proclamation on a future agenda.


“I’m definitely in support of this,” said Councilwoman Carol Garcia.


During the meeting, a resolution to approve the statement of purpose, guiding principles and meeting procedures for the newly formed Higher Education Task Force was removed from the agenda and will be considered at a future date.


On Feb. 16, the City Council approved the creation of the task force for the purpose of identifying policy recommendations that will guide the city in attracting higher education facilities and related investment to Roseville.

Here’s a look at some items approved during the April 20 Roseville City Council meeting:

Wastewater pipe rehabilitation project call for bids: The Environmental Utilities department will correct about 5.5 miles of collection system pipes that have cracked or deteriorated. Defective pipe will be fixed using “cured-in-place,” a trenchless technology where existing pipe is lined without an excavation. The estimated construction cost is $1.65 million and is funded by the Wastewater Rehabilitation Fund.

Fire Station No. 9 call for bids: The proposed fire station is located at 2451 Hayden Parkway. Station No. 5 is currently the primary response station to incidents in the West Roseville Specific Plan area. The planned annexation of Reason Farms and continued development west of Fiddyment Road will exceed Fire Station No. 5’s ability to provide service.

Construction of the new station will begin later this year and be completed by fall 2012. The estimated construction cost is $4 million and is funded by the Fire Facilities Fee.

Sierra Vista drainage improvements project call for bids: Sierra Vista is one of the older neighborhoods in Roseville. The drainage inlet system is undersized and antiquated and does not adequately handle rain run-off during large storm events, according to the city. Estimated cost is $350,000.

False alarm reduction program service agreement: Responding to false alarms costs the Roseville Police Department about $130,000 a year in staff time. The department says this time could be more productively spent responding to valid crimes and calls for service, and in problem-solving activities.

Public Safety Communications will administer the alarm program at a reduced cost to the city. The agreement will cost about $43,000 annually and will be absorbed by about $98,000 in permit charges and false alarm fines.

Pedestrian Master Plan and Best Practices Manual for Pedestrian Design: The ultimate goal of the master plan is to increase the number of people who walk in Roseville, reduce vehicle miles traveled and improve air quality. The plan recommends construction of 5.8 miles of sidewalks over a 20-year period at an estimated cost of $3.1 million. This equates to an average annual cost of about $160,000. City staff has already secured $637,000 in funds from outside sources.

Street closure for Downtown Tuesday Nights: Vernon Street will be closed from 3:30-10 p.m. Tuesdays from May 3 to July 26 for Downtown Tuesday Nights, an annual family oriented, outdoor food and music festival. Last year’s event attracted 40,000 people to downtown. At the April 6 meeting, the City Council approved $5,800 in funding to pay for street closures and refuse costs for the 13-week event.

Sena Christian can be reached at