Your October City Connections: Read about emergency evacuation planning, Coffey Neighborhood Park rebuild updates, $15 minimum wage, fall family events and more.

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October 2019


City News


Preparing Your Household for an Emergency Evacuation — Know All of Your Ways Out

evacuation route map

When disaster strikes, residents may be asked to evacuate their homes. Depending on the emergency, the safest route out of your neighborhood may not be the typical route you would take. It’s important to familiarize yourself and your family with your surrounding neighborhood. Know all of the ways out and listen for instructions from emergency personnel on which way to go when asked to evacuate. The City has developed new emergency preparedness tools and resources to help your family prepare for a potential emergency evacuation.

Hi/Lo Sirens
  — Santa Rosa’s Newest Alerting Tool  

Hi-Lo Video

Depending on the emergency, the City’s ability to reach you via traditional alert and warning tools may be limited. Santa Rosa police and fire department vehicles have been outfitted with new Hi/Lo sirens as an additional way of alerting residents. These European-style, two-tone sirens make a different sound than traditional sirens and will only be used in an emergency to alert residents within specific areas of the need to evacuate. If you hear the Hi/Lo, it’s time to go!  WATCH VIDEO

Fire Prevention Week is October 6th through 12th

The Santa Rosa Fire Department will visiting grade schools throughout Santa Rosa during Fire Prevention Week to teach and motivate children about fire safety for themselves and their families. Santa Rosa residents are also encouraged to take time during Fire Prevention Week to work on a home escape plan to be better prepared in the event of a fire in the home. That plan includes ensuring working smoke alarms on every level of the house, in every bedroom, and near all sleeping areas. It also includes identifying two ways out of every room, usually a door and a window, with a clear path to an outside meeting place (like a tree, light pole or mailbox) that’s a safe distance from the home. Home escape plans should be practiced twice a year by all members of the household. Remember, not every hero wears a cape — plan and practice your escape! READ MORE

Watch City's Wildfire Documentary Online or on Local TV Broadcast

Last October

Following three local film screenings held in September, the City’s documentary Last October is now available to watch online and at scheduled times on local broadcast television. The 50-minute film captures the City of Santa Rosa's local response to the Sonoma Complex Fires as told by several current and former City employees and officials who served as first responders, disaster service workers, and community leaders during one of the most destructive fires in California’s history. The film can be viewed on the the City's YouTube channel or on the Local Government Access Channel (Channel 28 on Comcast) on Mondays and Fridays at 7:00 p.m. through October 31st.  WATCH FILM


Wildfire Recovery Update 

Coffey Park Public Art

Final design concept for Coffey Neighborhood Park -- "Wellspring" by Wowhaus


Coffey Neighborhood Park Public Art Approved

The final design concept for the Coffey Neighborhood Park Public Art Project has been approved by the Art in Public Places Committee. Informed by neighborhood input gathered during the design process, Wellspring by Wowhaus consists of three sculptural seating elements in the shape of raindrops placed in a 12-foot diameter concrete circular plaza. The artwork plaza will be integrated with plantings in a unique rain garden within the park. Cast in durable glass fiber reinforced concrete with blue glass terrazzo, the raindrops are symbols of renewal and regeneration, and provide seating for visitors to the park. Two of the raindrops will invite playful interaction as they can be easily rotated like a swivel chair. Each raindrop will be surrounded by a scattering of blue glow-in-the-dark aggregate in the pavement, giving the appearance of incandescent raindrops on a plaza at dusk. Coffey Park residents will be invited to help create the centerpiece of the plaza: a glass mosaic of water ripples. The planned completion for the art installation is summer 2020.  READ MORE


Playground Design Selected for Coffey Neighborhood Park

Coffey Neighborhood Park redesign

The new playgrounds at Coffey Neighborhood Park will be nature-themed with soothing colors and pops of bright color for fun. Representatives from the Coffey Park neighborhood and the group Coffey Strong recommended the proposal. The playgrounds include a tot lot and second play area for school-age children. As requested, the playgrounds feature the maximum number of swings possible, while still allowing for other play features. Installation of the play equipment is tentatively set for December and the City is pursuing an aggressive goal of opening the playgrounds to the public by the end of the year. READ MORE


CalHome Disaster Assistance Loan Program

Income-eligible homeowners, whose homes were damaged or destroyed in the October 2017 wildfires and who have not yet begun to rebuild, are able to apply for gap loan funding of up to $100,000. These are low-interest, deferred payment, gap financing loans meant for the reconstruction or rehabilitation of income-qualified, owner‐occupied, single‐family homes within the Santa Rosa city limits. READ MORE


Community Homeless Assistance Program –
Proposed Expansion

The Department of Housing and Community Services is seeking input from the community on a proposal to expand the Community Homeless Assistance Program (CHAP) that will be presented to City Council for consideration on November 19. CHAP currently allows for the provision of homeless services such as safe parking or temporary overnight shelter on commercial or meeting facility (i.e. churches) properties. The proposal expands the definition of eligible property types to allow safe parking on private residential and public properties. READ MORE


Flashing Yellow Left Turn Arrow Retrofit

Yellow Left Turn Light

A 2016 City pilot program found the installation of a flashing yellow left turn arrow (FYA) signal resulted in a 50 percent reduction of left-hand turn-related collisions. Following the finding, the City installed five FYA signals throughout Santa Rosa. Thanks to continued federal grant funding from the Highway Safety Improvement Program, the City will install FYA signals at 39 additional intersections throughout Santa Rosa beginning in January 2020. READ MORE


Downtown Area Sidewalk Repairs


In partnership with the Downtown Community Benefit District, the City is initiating a pilot program designed to improve walkability and access in high-use pedestrian areas such as the downtown core and railroad square. The program will survey and map minor sidewalk lifts under two-inches in height, then remove the lift using edge-to-edge saw-cutting technology leaving a tapered, textured finish. Pedestrian traffic may be affected for a short time during repairs. Work is anticipated to begin early October.  READ MORE


$15 Minimum Wage

City Council will consider implementation of a $15 minimum wage for businesses within City limits at a Council meeting on October 1. The state minimum wage is currently $11 per hour, with California Senate Bill 3 raising the minimum wage by $1 each year every year until 2023 when it will reach $15 per hour. The City's ordinance proposes to expedite the $15 minimum wage locally to an effective date of July 1, 2020, for Santa Rosa companies with more than 25 employees and January 1, 2021, for companies with 25 or fewer employees. READ MORE


A Preferred Alternative for Downtown

Downtown image

The Planning and Economic Development Department will present a proposal for the preferred alternative for the Downtown Station Area Specific Plan to City Council for consideration on October 22. The proposal was developed with nearly a year of input from the community on ways the Downtown and surrounding areas could be re-zoned and potentially improved to meet modern developer demands and community needs. READ MORE


Commercial Linkage & Inclusionary Housing

As part of the Housing Action Plan, the City is collecting input on two proposed development fees that would help spur affordable housing:

  1. Commercial linkage fee: This fee would be attached to any non-housing, commercial development (e.g. office, industrial, retail) in order to offset the housing need for the individuals using those facilities.
  2. Inclusionary housing fee: This fee would be required for developers that choose not to include affordable housing as part of their housing development.

City Council will consider both proposed fees at Council meetings scheduled this month. The update would be based on the percentage of the fee paid based on each proposed project. READ MORE


Proposed Organics Processing Facility

The City, Zero Waste Sonoma, and Renewable Sonoma are exploring the creation of a new organics processing facility that includes composting and anaerobic digestion. The goal of the project is to increase diversion rates of organic/green material and to help Sonoma County meet greenhouse gas emission reduction goals set forth in California Senate Bill 1383. This legislation requires that the amount of organic/green materials put into landfills be reduced by 75% by 2025, based on 2014 baseline levels. READ MORE


Blue Green Algae Warning

Blue Green Algae

Sonoma County Department of Health Services’ Environmental Health unit launched an investigation on September 9th following the death of a dog that became ill after swimming in a pond at Rincon Valley Community Park. Subsequently, the pond water tested positive for low levels of blue-green algae (BGA) toxins. Additionally, BGA blooms have been spotted intermittently near the dock and boat launch at Lake Ralphine at Howarth Park (these blooms have not been confirmed as toxic). Signage has been posted all City parks with bodies of water and residents should follow these safety guidelines:

  • No Swimming
  • Do not let children or pets go into or drink the water, or go near scum
  • Stay away from algae on shore, isolated side pools, and scum
  • Do not drink water or use for cooking. Boiling or filtering water will not make it safe
  • For fish caught in the water, throw away guts and clean with bottled water before cooking
  • Call your doctor or veterinarian if you or your pet get sick after going in the water



Take Steps Now to be Ready for the Rainy Season

Break Out the Rake

Fall has arrived, and that means the leaves are in full color and the rainy season is right around the corner. Before the wet weather arrives, ‘Break out the Rake’ and keep your neighborhood storm drains clear of grass, leaves, and debris. Yard debris can clog your neighborhood storm drain, cause flooding, and pollute our local creeks. Simple changes make a big impact. READ MORE


Santa Rosa 2050 RFP

The City has launched a request for proposals (RFP) for consulting services to prepare a general plan update and environmental impact report. Over the past decade, Santa Rosa has evolved and experienced significant events impacting the landscape of the community, and the update to the existing general plan will reflect those impacts and will involve significant public input. The expected completion date of the updated general plan is 2022. READ MORE


Fall Water Supply Update

Fall Water Supply Update

Due to Sonoma Water’s work with Forecast Informed Reservoir Operations (FIRO) this past winter, this region started the summer season with plenty of water supply. Thanks to continued water use efficiency efforts by water customers in Santa Rosa and throughout the region, water supply levels remain excellent. As of September 9, Lake Sonoma is at 92% of water supply storage capacity and Lake Mendocino is at 117% of the target water supply curve. READ MORE

Events and Community Meetings


Levi’s GranFondo

Saturday, October 5, 7:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m., A Place to Play Park, 2375 West Third Street
The ride is on for the pre-eminent bike event the West Coast. Riders start at A Place to Play and head west, choosing a path based on their skill and preference. GranFondo begins October 5 at 8:00 a.m., but the festivities start October 4 at Juilliard Park for packet pickup, food, and exhibitor booths. LEARN MORE


SRPD Community Listening Sessions

October 9, 2019, 6:00 - 7:00 p.m., Downtown Session at DeTurk Round Barn, 819 Donahue Street
October 15, 2019, 6:00 - 7:00 p.m., Northeast Session at Maria Carillo High School, 6975 Montecito Blvd.
Chief Rainer Navarro invites you to attend one of five Community Listening Sessions, conveniently scheduled at locations across the City of Santa Rosa. In these roundtable meetings, you will be able to voice your concerns regarding public safety issues in your neighborhood. Space is limited, please RSVP online. LEARN MORE


Floating Pumpkin Patch

Floating Pumpkin Patch

Saturday, October 19, 1:30 - 6:00 p.m., Ridgway Swim Center, 455 Ridgway Avenue
Spin tradition and hunt for your pumpkin in the pool! Then deck it out at the decorating station with all sorts of fun crafts. We'll be playing games and handing out prizes all afternoon. Reserve your spot early, as this is a popular family event suitable for all ages. LEARN MORE


Food Truck Cinema at BV Golf Course: Hocus Pocus

Food Truck Cinema

Saturday, October 19, 2019, 5:00 - 7:00 p.m., BV Golf Course, 3330 Yulupa Avenue
Get in the Halloween spirit with the movie Hocus Pocus on the lush grass and under the stars at Bennett Valley Golf Course. This comprehensive experience combines gourmet food trucks, local live music, and a pop culture film. Cost is $5 Child, $11 Adult. LEARN MORE


Merit Awards Ceremony

City of Santa Rosa Merit Awards

Monday, October 21, 7:00 - 8:00 p.m., City Hall Council Chambers, 100 Santa Rosa Avenue
Don't miss this uplifting, feel-good event! Join with the City Council to honor our 2019 Merit Award winners—those outstanding volunteers who give of their time and energy to serve our community and improve the quality of life in Santa Rosa. LEARN MORE


Halloween at Howarth

Halloween at Howarth

Saturday, October 26, 11:30 a.m. - 2:45 p.m., Howarth Park, 630 Summerfield Road
Dress in your best costume and go trick-or-treating throughout one of Santa Rosa's most popular parks! Plus, jump aboard the Howarth Park train and take a pony ride too! Cost is $6 or $15, pre-registration required for one of three start times: 11:30 a.m., 12:45 p.m., 2 p.m. LEARN MORE


Santa Rosa History Tour on Rosie the Trolley

Monday, October 28, 2019, 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m., Howarth Park, 630 Summerfield Road
Tour Roseland and Southwest Santa Rosa aboard Rosie the Trolley with charismatic historian Bill Montgomery. You’ll learn about the area’s captivating history and take short walks to get a better view of the historic sites. Cost is $20, pre-registration required. LEARN MORE


Building Neighborhood Power

Saturday, November 2, 2019, 9:30 a.m. - 1:00 p.m., Utilities Field Operations Bldg, 35 Stony Point Road
Santa Rosa Together, Santa Rosa Housing For All, the Sonoma Intersections Coalition and the City of Santa Rosa present Building Neighborhood Power. World-renown community builder Jim Diers, former director of the Seattle Department of Neighborhoods and professor at the University of Washington's Asset-Based Community Development Institute, will work with Santa Rosa residents to brainstorm the types of services, structures and support desired by participating City neighborhoods. REGISTER HERE


Public Hearing:  A Place to Play Park

A Place to Play Master Plan Update

Tuesday, November 5, 2019, at or after 4 p.m., City Hall Council Chambers, 100 Santa Rosa Avenue
Community members are invited to provide input to City Council on proposed updates to the master plan for A Place to Play Park. Updates include the addition of a new emergency well and water system, an amendment to reflect an existing water pump station, addition of picnic areas, hydration stations, and a basketball court.



Saturday, November 9, 5:00 - 9:00 p.m., SoFA District, 312 South A Street
Winterblast is back! The SoFA District is holding its largest art and musical event of the year, and all are invited to join the neighborhood. This street fair features the Sofa Parade, street performers, open art studios, family entertainment, live music, food trucks, costumers, and so much more.  LEARN MORE


Volunteer Opportunities

Flat Rock Park Volunteer Day

Saturday, October 12, 2019, 9:30 - 11:30 a.m., Flat Rock Footbridge, 4227 Flat Rock Circle
Help take care of the Brush Creek Restoration Area and Flat Rock Park. Learn about native California riparian plants and how they provide food and shelter for fish and wildlife. Heavy rain cancels, in light rain the work continues. LEARN MORE


Park-a-Month – Doyle Community Park

Park a MOnth

Saturday, October 12, 2019, 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m., Doyle Community Park, 700 Doyle Park
Bring your friends and work together or come and meet new people while helping to spruce up Doyle Community Park. These are family-friendly workdays and a good opportunity for youth to earn community service hours.  LEARN MORE


Santa Rosa Rural Cemetery Workday

Rural Cemetery Workday

Saturday, October 19, 2019, 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m., 1600 Franklin Avenue
Join the Rural Cemetery Preservation Committee at their monthly volunteer workday. LEARN MORE


Sierra Park Creek Cleanup

Saturday, October 19, 2019, 9:00 - 11:00 a.m., Strawberry School, 2311 Horseshoe Drive
Continue the care of this little creek with Strawberry School, scouts, and neighbors on Bennett Valley Clean Up Day. LEARN MORE


Join Our Team


Current Job Openings 

The City of Santa Rosa offers great career opportunities with excellent salary, a generous benefits package, including retirement through CalPERS, a competitive leave package, a choice of three health plans, flexible spending program, and top of the line, employer paid vision and dental coverage. 

Engineer Image

Associate Civil Engineer/Assistant Engineer | Full-Time | $100,814.00 to $122,538.00 Annually | Various Departments
Associate Civil Engineers and Assistant Engineers perform professional engineering work in the planning, investigation, design, analysis, construction, and inspection of public works, utilities, and related projects, or the investigation, review, and inspection of private development projects. Open until filled.

City Clerk | Full-Time | $8,326.17 to $10,686.08 Monthly | City Manager’s Office
The City Clerk is responsible for staying abreast of relevant laws and regulations to ensure the City of Santa Rosa remains compliant with record-keeping and document and information management protocols. The City Clerk oversees City Council agenda management, elections, and political compliance programs for the City. Additionally, the City clerk leads the City Team in enhancing public engagement and active participation in the City’s governance. Closes October 6, 2019 at 11:59 p.m.

Department Application Specialist | Full-Time | $73,293.00 to $89,062.00 Annually | Transportation and Public Works Department
Application Specialists are responsible for installing, configuring, diagnosing, and troubleshooting complex specialized computer software applications and related hardware that are critical to the mission of a specific City department. Additionally, Application Specialists create technical documents and computer training materials, as well as train users to use specialized department software. Closes October 7, 2019 at 11:59 p.m.