LiveWire — November 2019

Posted on November 1, 2019


Brian Dossey, City Manager

On October 8, 2019, the Town of Colma along with Mercy Housing celebrated the Grand Opening and Dedication to Veteran’s Village on Mission Road.  While there were many wonderful moments from the day and many speeches; there were two speakers that gave very moving and emotional presentations, and I would like to highlight those for you.

The first was from United States Marine Corp Veteran James Nelson who served in Vietnam.  James is a resident at Veteran’s Village and shared his stories of Vietnam, including his injuries and recovery, as well as his post-Vietnam experiences where he continued to serve after the war.  He ended his presentation by expressing how happy and grateful he was for Mercy Housing and the opportunity Veteran’s Village is providing.

The second speaker was a bit spur of the moment and unannounced, but Veteran’s Village resident Veteran Belinda Payne jumped up to the microphone and gave an emotional speech on how appreciative she was on the warm welcome she has received from Colma and that she is excited about the opportunities to be part of a community again.  Belinda concluded her remarks by saying “Thank you for not being afraid us, we just want the opportunity to feel normal again.” Belinda brought many of the audience to tears including herself during her presentation.

The event closed with a ribbon cutting, appetizers, cake and good conversation.  To all at Veteran’s Village – Welcome to Colma!

If you would like the opportunity to meet some of our new residents at Veteran’s Village, please join us on November 8, 2019 at 11:30 am as we honor our new resident Veteran’s for our Veteran’s Day Recognition Event and BBQ at Veteran’s Village on Mission Road.

Recently with the planned power shut off’s being conducted by PG&E we cannot stress the importance of SMC Alerts.  SMC Alerts a valuable tool for emergency preparedness for residents in San Mateo County.  SMC Alerts is an alert notification system used to immediately contact you during urgent or emergency situations. You can set alerts to send emergency and non-emergency text and voice messages to your email accounts, cell phones, smartphones, tablets, or voice messages to landline phones. SMC ALERT is a free service offered through the San Mateo County Office of Emergency Services. You can sign up here: In emergencies when seconds count and can save lives, SMC ALERT can provide you with crucial emergency alerts to help keep you and your family safe.


Michael Laughlin, City Planner

The Planning Department would like to let you know about some current projects and initiatives within the Town:

Bird and Animal Feeding Ordinance: The City Council has directed planning staff to prepare an ordinance that prohibits the feeding of birds and wild animals on public and private property. The ordinance is tentatively scheduled to be presented at the December 11, 2019 City Council meeting.  The proposed ordinance includes an exclusion for back yard bird feeders on single family residential properties.  Residents who use bird feeders are encouraged only to feed birds seeds and other appropriate food (not bread, rice or crackers) and to maintain the area around the feeder.  In addition, bird feeders should be suspended off the ground by a chain or pole to prevent access by rodents.  If you have any comments or questions regarding the proposed ordinance, please contact the Planning Department or plan to attend the hearing.

Reducing Food Service Ware Waste in Colma

We’re asking our businesses and the community for feedback on a draft ordinance that would limit the types of foodware offered for takeout food. The Town is joining several other cities that are also considering this program which is led by San Mateo County’s Environmental Health Division and the Office of Sustainability. The draft ordinance can be found on the County’s website at program would affect Colma businesses that provide prepared food for public consumption like restaurants and require the following:

  • Straws, stirrers, cup spill plugs, etc. would only be provided to consumers upon request or at self-serve stations/dispensers
  • Straws, cups, plates, take out containers, etc. would be required to be made of compostable materials, not plastic. Acceptable materials include fiber-based products such as paper, wood, bamboo, etc.
  • Exemptions would be available for medical accommodations
  • The Town would provide resources to businesses about good alternatives to plastic food ware.

Food Trucks and “Mobile Stores”: The City Council recently passed an ordinance that will permit “Mobile Stores,” Including food trucks on private property and on portions of Collins Avenue, Mission Road and Hillside Boulevard for limited hours to provide service to businesses in the area. The ordinance becomes effective in January of 2020.

New Shopping Center Tenants: Residents can look forward to House of Bagels, Yifang Taiwan Tea and Banfield Animal Hospital in the Serra Center. Ashley Home Furnishings plans on opening at the 280 Metro Center just before the holidays.

El Camino Real Bicycle and Pedestrian Study. The Town was fortunate to receive a grant from Cal Trans to study future improvements on El Camino Real. This effort is just starting and will continue through 2019 and 2020. Please visit the dedicated website at: and share your ideas with us on the interactive map.

Colma Veteran’s Village on Mission Road:  This project is now complete and residents have moved in!

As always, please feel free to contact the Planning Department at (650)757-8888 if you have questions about upcoming projects in the Town.

View the rest of the November edition here: LiveWire

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