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City Manager Post To Be Filled Soon
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The Riverbank City Council may soon be filling the vacant City Manager position.

In recent weeks, the council has held several additional, closed session meetings to discuss the applicants and their qualifications.

According to Council Member Cal Campbell, the applicant pool started at around 13 candidates. He said over recent weeks, the group has been narrowed to five, then down to three.

Last week, Council Member Darlene Barber-Martinez said that an offer is being prepared to present to a selectee.

In the past, she noted, the council has been able to hold an open forum with the last few candidates, with the public getting a chance to know them and possibly adding input to the selection process. This time, she said, that idea didn’t come to fruition because at least one of the applicants is a current city manager and did not want their current city to be aware of the application for the Riverbank post.

The selection process likely won’t be complete and the selected manager named until negotiations are complete and the person officially hired, said officials.

At the end of August, previous City Manager Jill Anderson left for Washington after more than four years in Riverbank. Since then, Finance Director Marisela Garcia has also served as Interim City Manager.

Meanwhile, at its Tuesday, Oct. 25 regular meeting, the council made short work of the items on its agenda.

With little discussion, the council continued its Public Hearing on the first reading of an ordinance changing speed limits on several streets around town. The council voted unanimously to follow the traffic study’s recommendations to raise the speeds. The changes will allow Police Services to enforce limits with the use of radar guns throughout Riverbank.

Also under the topic of law enforcement, the council approved an application for a special grant from the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District. The grant would provide reimbursement for the city’s purchase of three Zero model electric police motorcycles.

The city would qualify under the grant for a reimbursement of the $62,700 cost of the vehicles.

The accompanying report says the purchase will have several benefits to the city.

“In addition to improving air quality, which is the primary goal of the grant, Zero’s are extremely quiet and offer much more stealth than a traditional police vehicle while doing proactive patrol or traffic enforcement,” the report stated.

It also cites its special technology as an asset.

“As Zero’s do not have a traditional drive train, the only routine maintenance will be for tires and brakes (which can be paid for out of the existing traffic fund). Operating costs for the Zero’s is anticipated to be $800 for every 12,000 miles each motorcycle travels.

“Zero’s have a fully charged range of 141 miles (city) and 79 miles (highway). They have a top speed of 98 mph. They will charge off of any standard 110 V or 220 V, with a standard charge time of 8.9 hours and an average electrical charging cost of $1.46/charge. The long term battery life is estimated at 312,000 miles. The equivalent city fuel economy is 415 MPG and highway is 170 MPG. Curb weight of the Zero is 437 pounds. Police Model Zeros come fully equipped with Code 3 lights and siren.”

The report also indicated many are in use around the region already.

“The cities of Ceres, Patterson and Waterford have all procured Zero’s through similar grants and are very satisfied with the Zero’s performance,” the report stated.

The council also approved raising the rates residents will pay for garbage pickup in Riverbank. Adopting the 2.5 percent Consumer Price Index increase will trigger a similar hike in rates for residents and businesses.

In staff reports, Garcia noted that residents will be receiving their water/sewer/garbage bills in the mail soon. She pointed out that they should total a minimum amount as staff works to survey and test billing data and software used to set charges.

She said bills after the first of the year should show normal, corrected billing to bring residents up to date.