City Manager’s Update
Brian Dossey, City Manager
At the July 8 City Council Meeting, the Council adopted a resolution condemning racism. Due to recent events in our Country over the past couple of months, communities nationwide have made it clear that Americans are rejecting the status quo, and that we will not stand by idly as witnesses to the systemic racism and injustices that have been occurring for decades. Therefore, the City Council adopted a resolution that does not tolerate discrimination or racial injustice, and will oppose any attempts to undermine the safety, security, and rights of members of our community, and will work proactively to ensure the rights and privileges of everyone in the Town—regardless of race. The resolution also states that the Town encourages the community to stand together through peaceful exchange and discourse to enact change and move forward towards a future with more equity and inclusion in Colma, California, and our country. For a complete copy of the resolution please visit our website at www.colma.ca.gov.
Also at the July 8 City Council Meeting, the Council conducted a study session on the Colma Police Department’s Use of Force policies in light of recent events surrounding police brutality and the “Eight Can’t Wait” campaign. This study session was an opportunity for staff to provide information to the City Council and the community regarding Police Department policies, practices, and functions, and to hear from the Council and community regarding their thoughts and experiences about policing in Colma. Following the tragic homicide of George Floyd and resulting protests around the country calling for justice and racial equality, the City Council and staff wanted to demonstrate transparency in the Police Department’s Use of Force Policies ensuring fair and racially unbiased community policing. During the discussion staff received comments and questions and received feedback on “Duty to Intercede” and “Comprehensive Reporting.” In June the Colma Chief of Police had already took Executive Action, banning the use of the Carotid Chokehold. Over the course of the next several months the City Council and Police Department staff will continue to review their Use of Force policies ensuring the safety of the Colma Community.
The long overdue Mission Road Bicycle, Pedestrian and Beautification project is finally underway. The $2.8 million project is being partially funded through $825,000 in grants and $247,000 in SB1 and Measure A funds, and the balance is being funded through the Town’s General Fund. The project will bring greater pedestrian and bicycle access, increased parking, enhanced street lighting, and improve safety throughout the corridor. The improvements are scheduled to take approximately four months, and if you have any questions or concerns during construction please do not hesitate to contact Town Hall at 650-997-8300.
On the business front, I would like to welcome the House of Bagels to Colma. House of Bagels opened on July 1st and are located in the Serra Center shopping center next to Target. Next time your visiting the Serra Center, I encourage you to stop by and try a few Bagels. They’re delicious! Also, at the upcoming August 12 City Council Meeting, the Council will consider a Use Permit for the Baby’s R Us site to become a Cadillac car dealership. As you know the property has been vacant for quite some time now and we are excited for the possibility of a new dealership on auto row. I encourage you to attend our meeting on August 12th via zoom to learn more about the project.
It is not too late to shape your future; your participation in the 2020 Census directly effects the amount of federal funding Colma receives. Everyone counts and each unaccounted for resident costs the Town of Colma $1,000 per year in Federal funding for the next ten years. That is why we need every Colma resident to participate in the Census. The quality of our public services and the power of our voice in government depend on it. To learn more about the 2020 Census and how leaders across San Mateo County are working together to ensure a complete and accurate count, please visit www.smccensus.org or please see our insert in this issue of the August LiveWire.
If you haven’t already done so, please do not forget to sign up for SMC ALERT (http://hsd.smcsheriff.com/smcalert). SMC Alert is a software application used to send emergency alerts, notifications and updates to your cell phone, mobile device, home phone, work and/or e-mail account. In the event of an emergency, public safety agencies such as police and fire will be able to provide emergency information directly to you. Each person may sign up for a SMC Alert account. You can add multiple devices (cell phones, smartphones, tablets and email addresses) to your SMC Alert account. Alerts can be sent to all devices listed in your SMC Alert account. In an emergency situation an alert may be sent by emergency response agencies by text, email or voice recording to your mobile device, home or business phone.