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JUNE 2019 |

The Monthly Magazine of the League of California Cities

Communicating During a Cyberattack: The Next Crisis Frontier for Cities p.14 Safe Sidewalk Vending Act Curbs Local Regulations: What You Need to Know p.12 Broadband Deployment, Public Safety and Defending Local Control p.3

CONTENTS 2 Calendar of League Events 3 President’s Message Broadband Deployment, Public Safety and Defending Local Control

By Jan Arbuckle

It is unreasonable and unacceptable for the telecom industry to expect it can override the legitimate concerns and best interests of our residents and cities.


City Forum

12 Legal Notes

 Safe Sidewalk Vending Act Curbs Local Regulations: What You Need to Know

By Joaquin Vazquez

 his new law affects cities in sevT eral significant ways.

Communicating During 14 

a Cyberattack: The Next Crisis Frontier for Cities

By Scott Summerfield

 ocal agencies are a favorite target L for cyberattacks. Plan now for what can happen if a cyberattacker seizes control of your city’s data and systems.

The Future City

By Steve Brown

 An array of tech-based tools promises to help optimize operations, connect residents to new information and services, repair infrastructure and reimagine transportation.

10 News From the Institute for

By David Graham

 Boosting Community Engagement With Social Media: How One City Is Using Facebook Live

 chief information officer deA scribes how lessons learned from modestly sized cities can apply to cities of all sizes.

Job Opportunities 21 

By Melissa Kuehne

Amplify Your Advocacy: 11 

League Mobile App Instantly Connects City Officials With Legislators

By Bismarck Obando

 dvocating promptly with united A voices on key city-related legislation is critically important. The mobile application enables city officials to respond rapidly when a call to action is issued.

Over 40 leadership educational sessions Hundreds of networking opportunities

Lessons From Modestly Sized Cities

Lake Forest began streaming council meetings in early 2018.

Explore best practices and innovative solutions

Innovative by Necessity: 19 

Local Government


Professional Services 27  Directory


On the Record

Cover image: Xijian

 City officials explain what first inspired them to run for the city council.

Register Now

October 16–18, 2019 Long Beach Convention Center

President Jan Arbuckle Council Member Grass Valley

1400 K Street Sacramento, CA 95814 (916) 658-8200 Fax (916) 658-8240

First Vice President Randon Lane Mayor pro Tem Murrieta

Second Vice President John Dunbar Mayor Yountville

Immediate Past President Rich Garbarino Vice Mayor South San Francisco

Executive Director Carolyn Coleman

For a complete list of the League board of directors, visit

Magazine Staff Editor in Chief Jude Hudson Lemons, Hudson + Associates (916) 658-8234; email: Managing Editor Norman Coppinger (916) 658-8277; email: Advertising Sales Manager Cici Trino Association Outsource Services, Inc. (916) 961-9999; email: Administrative Assistant Savannah Cobbs (916) 658-8223; email: Contributors Rony Berdugo Alison Leary Corrie Manning Erica Manuel Patrick Whitnell Kayla Woods

leaguevents June 13–14

Policy Committee Meetings, Sacramento The League’s policy committees review issues of interest to cities statewide and make recommendations to the League board of directors.


Legal Advocacy Committee Meeting, Sacramento The committee reviews and recommends friend-of-the-court efforts on cases of significant statewide interest to California cities.


Mayors and Council Members’ Executive Forum, Newport Beach The forum’s sessions keep elected officials up to date on key issues.

Associate Editors Carol Malinowski Carolyn Walker


Mayors and Council Members’ Advanced Leadership Workshops, Newport Beach The workshops offer local elected officials who attended the preceding Executive Forum an opportunity to explore in greater detail topics such as managing municipal finances and resources.

Design Taber Creative Group Advertising Design ImagePoint Design For photo credits, see page 22. Western City (ISSN 0279-5337) is published monthly by the League of California Cities, 1400 K St., Sacramento, CA 95814. Subscriptions: $39.00/1 year; $63.00/2 years; student: $26.50; foreign: $52.00; single copies: $4.00, including sales tax. Entered as periodical mail January 30, 1930, at the Post Office, Los Angeles, CA 90013, under the Act of April 13, 1879. Periodical postage paid at Sacramento, Calif.









Board of Directors’ Meeting, Newport Beach The League board reviews, discusses and takes action on a variety of issues affecting cities, including legislation, legal advocacy, education and training and more.


League of California Cities Annual Conference & Expo, Long Beach The conference offers dozens of educational sessions, numerous professional development opportunities, hundreds of exhibits and a chance to participate in the League’s policymaking activities.

Event and registration information is available at



Postmaster: Send address changes to Western City, 1400 K Street, Sacramento, CA 95814. Western City Trademark Reg. U.S. Pat. Off. ©2019 League of California Cities. All rights reserved. Material may not be reprinted without written permission. This issue is Volume XCV, No. 6.




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League of California Cities

President’s Message by Jan Arbuckle

Residents and cities want cellular equipment to blend into its surroundings and take local aesthetics into account; telecom companies consider this unnecessarily expensive and inconvenient.

Broadband Deployment, Public Safety and Defending Local Control As summer approaches and the weather grows warmer, the threat of wildfires is an ongoing concern for city officials and staff statewide. Among the many issues associated with emergency preparedness and response are challenges related to telecommunications, which include notifying the public about approaching fires and evacuation orders and ensuring that first responders can communicate rapidly without impediments or obstacles.

The Fight Over Net Neutrality The experiences of first responders during the 2018 Mendocino Complex fire provide an alarming reminder of the potential pitfalls associated with wireless communication during an emergency. Santa Clara County firefighters battling the immense blaze were severely impacted when internet service provider (ISP) Verizon slowed

the transmission of their wireless data to 1/200 or less of its original speed, a practice called “throttling.” Describing the situation, Fire Chief Anthony Bowden wrote, “Verizon imposed these limitations despite being informed that throttling was actively impeding County Fire’s ability to provide crisis response and essential emergency services.” Net neutrality is the principle that ISPs should enable equal access to the internet. It prevents ISPs from blocking, throttling, degrading or prioritizing content, applications or services — because a free, open internet fosters innovation and helps close digital divides. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) adopted rules in 2015 that ensured net neutrality but repealed those

rules in December 2017. The State of California passed SB 822 (Wiener, Chapter 976, Statutes of 2018) in response to the repeal. The League supported the bill, which prohibits ISPs from participating in specific activities that impact a user’s ability to access internet content. Hours after the bill was signed into law, the U.S. Department of Justice filed a lawsuit against the State of California in federal district court asserting that federal law preempts SB 822. The League and a coalition of local governments filed an amicus curiae (friend of the court) brief in this case in support of the state. This lawsuit has been put on hold by the court pending the outcome of another neutrality lawsuit in the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals. continued

Western City, June 2019


Broadband Deployment, Public Safety and Defending Local Control, continued

Closing the Digital Divide Net neutrality focuses on equal access for all users. Internet access also plays an increasingly important role in the academic success of youth. The Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC), a nonprofit, nonpartisan research organization, released a report titled California’s Digital Divide in March 2019. The report’s key findings include: • The digital divide persists across major demographic groups and in rural areas. Though most demographic groups have seen significant increases in broadband subscriptions at home, gaps persist for African American, Latino, rural, lowincome and less educated households. Between 54 and 67 percent of these households had broadband subscriptions in 2017, compared with 74 percent for all households (see graph on page 5); and



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• Lack of internet access at home leaves underrepresented students further behind. Nearly 70 percent of teachers assign homework that requires broadband access. Although the state has made progress closing the digital divide at schools, internet access at home is still a challenge: almost 16 percent of school-aged children in California (about 945,000) had no internet connection at home in 2017 and 27 percent (about 1.7 million) did not have broadband connections. Similar to overall trends, access varied significantly by family income, parental education, race/ethnicity and geography. For example, 22 percent of low-income households with school-aged children did not have any internet connection at home, and 48 percent reported no broadband subscription at home. Nearly half (44 percent) of these households said cost was the main barrier. In rural areas and disadvantaged urban neighborhoods, access to broadband services remains problematic. Broadband access provides a lifeline in rural communities, but because such areas are not densely populated and thus less profitable, providing new technology in these areas is not typically a priority for telecom companies. This also applies to disadvantaged urban neighborhoods, where fewer customers can afford broadband services.

Telecom companies cite a lack of cost effectiveness as the reason for not serving these residents; however, every less affluent community deserves equal access to technology — particularly when broadband access is a key factor in students’ academic success and often provides a crucial link to lifesaving services in rural areas. The practice of selectively delivering services based on anticipated profit is known as cherry picking. One way that telecom companies avoid this issue is by preempting local control through state or federal law.

The Rush to Deploy 5G at the Expense of Local Control Pushing for state and federal preemption of local control is also proving useful for the telecom industry in its quest to deploy fifth-generation (5G) wireless broadband. Although 5G promises to deliver wireless data more efficiently to millions more devices than earlier broadband versions, the need for “small cells” is often overstated by telecom companies fighting for a larger share of a highly competitive market. Because current demand has exceeded the capacity of 4G networks, a dense network of small cells must be placed in close proximity throughout heavily populated urban areas.

Local communities have legitimate concerns about the deployment of these small cells. First, the public right of way is a taxpayer asset; companies wishing to access and use the public right of way must pay the taxpayers a fair price for it. Second, reducing the visual blight associated with cell towers and equipment is a concern for residents and communities statewide; they want such equipment to be inconspicuous and blend into its surroundings, taking local aesthetics into consideration. The telecom industry perceives these requirements as unnecessarily expensive and inconvenient. For the past several years, the industry has worked to get laws passed in Congress and state legislatures throughout the nation that would preempt local authority over the deployment of wireless facilities. In California, the League successfully opposed such legislation in 2017. SB 649 (Hueso, D-San Diego) would have given wireless providers the unrestrained ability to install bulky cellular equipment in the public right of way — without permission from cities and counties, input from the public or fair compensation for the use of local taxpayer assets. Though the California Senate and Assembly both passed the bill, then-Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed it and

California’s Digital Divide Persists for Several Demographic Groups Percentage of households with broadband at home



66% 59%





• Limit local authority over the public right of way with respect to the deployment of 5G antennas and equipment; • Limit the application fees and ongoing rent that can be charged for the use of the public right of way; and • Shorten the timeline (also known as the “shot clock”) for local governments to consider applications filed by telecom providers. continued

The telecom views local communities as

40 30

obstructing the

20 10 0

Undaunted, the telecom industry turned its attention to the FCC as a more receptive vehicle for abolishing local control over the public right of way. In the face of strong opposition from the League and many local government allies, the FCC voted unanimously on Sept. 26, 2018, to adopt the Declaratory Ruling and Third Report and Order (WC Docket No.1784 & WT Docket No.17-79), which:

industry often



said, “There is something of real value in having a process that results in extending this innovative technology rapidly and efficiently. Nevertheless, I believe that the interest which localities have in managing rights of way requires a more balanced solution than the one achieved in this bill.”

All households

African American


Source: American Community Survey, 2017


Low Income

No college

rollout of new technology.

Western City, June 2019


Broadband Deployment, Public Safety and Defending Local Control, continued

Local governments determined to preserve their rights took this battle to the courts. The League has joined a coalition of cities, counties and state municipal leagues in a lawsuit, currently pending in the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, challenging the ruling and order. The lawsuit argues that the ruling and order: • Violate various provisions of the Constitution; • Are inconsistent with the Telecommunications Act of 1996; and • Have procedural flaws.

A Nationwide Issue of Local Control I recently traveled to Washington, D.C., on two separate occasions to participate in National League of Cities (NLC) events, where we met federal decisionmakers and discussed city priorities.

S 6

League of California Cities


In discussions with local leaders from Kentucky, Pennsylvania and other states, I discovered that they have the same concerns about broadband access and deployment as we do in California. When we met with various members of Congress and their staff, we talked about the need for rural broadband, particularly in light of recent events like the Camp Fire that destroyed the Town of Paradise. Communities in many states expressed their interest in exploring how to get telecom companies to invest more in expanding and improving internet access and broadband availability.

The telecom industry often views local communities as obstructing the rollout of new technology in ways that maximize corporate profits — but it is unreasonable and unacceptable for the industry to expect it can override the legitimate concerns and best interests of our residents and cities. The League and its member cities are working hard to ensure that local authority in this area is preserved. I encourage you to follow these telecom issues closely and make sure that your representatives in the state Legislature and Congress understand your city’s position. Visit for the most recent updates on the issues and litigation described here. ■

Call Brian Wong at (310) 429-0519 Go to for more information

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The by Steve Brown People like living in cities. Globally, 1.3 million people move into cities each week. That’s roughly the population of San Diego moving from rural areas into cities every seven days between now and 2050, when 68 percent of the global population will live in cities. People reside in cities for many reasons: to have access to a wide range of services, to live in a dynamic community with richer cultural experiences — and economic opportunity.

New Technologies Offer Tools for Today and Tomorrow On the city side of this equation, city managers and city leaders have a lot on their plates. They need to ensure public health and safety, empower their residents and keep everything moving — people, goods, services, water, waste and the local economy. It’s a mighty challenge. A range of new technologies will offer tools that can help. “You can’t manage what you don’t measure” is a business principle attributed to management expert Peter Drucker. To manage the complex set of activities that keep a city humming, city managers need to get “eyes” on their community.


Enterprise software giant SAP estimates that by 2030, the world will be filled with over 100 trillion sensors. Simple sensors can measure temperature, moisture, air quality and so on. More complex sensors employ artificial intelligence (AI) to “see” more; for example, a smart camera uses AI to count vehicles in traffic, spot potential criminal activity or log open parking spaces. Tech experts estimate that by 2020, the world’s cities will have over 1 billion cameras. The only practical way to review that much video and extract useful insights is to use AI. Sensors build a bridge between the physical world that we all inhabit and the everincreasing capability of the digital world. Such sensors enable digital intelligence to understand what is happening in our cities and to take automated actions to optimize flow or resolve issues — or to alert managers that they may need to take action. For example, a smart sensor can listen to the sounds and vibrations of heavy equipment and alert public works staff when the sound changes in a way that indicates that preventive maintenance is warranted. The next generation of cellular networks, known as 5G (for fifth generation), will roll out over the next five years with most California cities being connected before

2021 or so. These new networks will make internet connection speeds between 10 and 100 times faster. They will also enable a spectrum of new applications for cities, because 5G networks are designed to be far more scalable than previous 4G networks and some versions can run on much less power. This will make it possible to connect almost any piece of infrastructure or any sensor to the internet. 5G networks will connect with parking meters, garbage cans, traffic cameras and much more. Connected parking meters offer the lure of variable pricing to help cities boost revenues. Connected trash cans are already in trials in cities throughout the United States. Companies are now manufacturing connected waste compactors that automatically send alerts when they are full. Some of these trash cans bristle with technology. At least one company offers to install its trash cans at no cost to cities in return for advertising revenue from digital displays mounted on the side of the trash can. The trash cans also display public service announcements, amber alerts and other messages from the city. Some models include cameras and microphones. If the trash can “hears” a gunshot, all the cameras on the trash cans in the vicinity start recording automatically as an aid to local law enforcement.

Steve Brown is CEO of Possibility and Purpose LLC and He can be reached at


League of California Cities

ure Smart traffic signals use sensors to understand and optimize traffic flow. Tests in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and Bellevue, Washington, have produced impressive and successful results. In Pittsburgh, sensors reduced idle time waiting at a traffic light by 40 percent; this reduced emissions by 21 percent and cut travel times by 25 percent. The use of sensors reduced travel times during Bellevue’s rush hour commute by up to 43 percent. A report from the McKinsey Global Institute suggests that smart traffic signals can cut emergency response times by 20 to 35 percent.


the horseless carriage began. That shift was monumental. It transformed human mobility and shaped our cities. We will soon make another major transition in human mobility — to the horseless, driverless carriage. In this scenario, a vehicle shifts from being primarily a hardware product that you own to a predominantly softwarefocused item that you use as a service; think Uber or Lyft without the human driver.

The Coming Shift in Transportation

Autonomous vehicles will reshape American cities just as the motor car did in the 20th century. By 2040, the majority of vehicles on the road will be autonomous and electric. Recharging will be done at out-of-town central depots. Street corner gas stations and the small convenience stores they support may become a thing of the past. We may need fewer Department of Motor Vehicle offices and parking structures and less on-street parking. Less parking means more drop-off and pick-up zones will be needed. Cities will need to plan for these transition zones if they want to avoid the kind of congestion that already occurs in the ride-share areas of busy airports.

Perhaps the biggest change that technology will bring to cities in the coming decades is the shift to autonomous transportation systems. At the end of the 19th century, the transition from horse and carriage to

Human error causes approximately 93 percent of car accidents. Globally, 1.25 million people are killed in car accidents each year — almost half of them pedestrians. That’s one person every

With 30 percent of in-city traffic estimated to be people circling to look for parking, the ability to guide drivers to open, bookable parking spots may help to alleviate downtown traffic congestion. Parking sensors can be ultrasonic sensors mounted on the ground, pole-mounted smart cameras or sensors mounted on autonomous vehicles.

25 seconds. Autonomous vehicles may reduce accidents and also increase access to transportation. Cars will be available to people who are too young, too old or otherwise unable to drive, and at rates that are far lower than a typical ride-share vehicle today. Autonomous delivery systems from online retail companies aim to put small delivery robots onto our sidewalks. Cities that are already grappling with the scooter scourge will also need to address the issues associated with networks of ground-based delivery robots, which will likely be followed quickly by airborne delivery drones.

The Path Forward Technology has always shaped our cities, and that process will only continue and accelerate. City managers and staff will soon use an array of tech-based tools to optimize operations, connect residents to new information and services, repair infrastructure and reimagine transportation. It’s an exciting time. And technologies such as sensors, artificial intelligence and more will be new colors in the palettes of innovative city managers as they paint bold plans for the future of California cities. ■

Western City, June 2019


Boosting Community Engagement With Social Media: How One City Is Using Facebook Live by Melissa Kuehne For years, cities have broadcast their city council meetings using public access channels and agenda management systems to increase transparency and access. Now, social media presents a new opportunity for cities to expand their reach even further and approach public engagement more creatively. California cities are increasingly experimenting with Facebook Live to broadcast activities like community events, council meetings and public workshops. Facebook Live facilitates livestreaming of video content directly through a Facebook user’s account. Videos can vary in length and be digitally archived on the user’s account. The City of Lake Forest (pop. 84,845) in Orange County is not only streaming its council meetings through Facebook Live, but is also allowing for real-time public comment directly through the social media platform. Lake Forest began streaming council meetings in early 2018. After just a few meetings, the online engagement levels had surpassed the number of people watching the meetings on public access or attending in person. Lake Forest calculates that it reaches an average of 5,500 people through the social media platform during each meeting. As an added bonus, in its last biennial community satisfaction survey, Lake Forest received a 79 percent rating in “satisfaction with communications” — an increase of 6 percent. City staff attributes some of this growth to increased transparency and engagement fostered through Facebook Live. “The City of Lake Forest is constantly exploring ways to leverage technology so we can reach our residents quickly and consistently,” says Lake Forest Mayor Mark Tettemer. “Facebook Live has become an effective and convenient method to engage with our community in a more meaningful way.”

More Resources for Engaging Your Community Lessons Learned At a recent meeting of the League’s City Managers’ Department, Lake Forest staff shared a number of lessons learned about using Facebook Live to stream public meetings: • There may be some upfront and labor costs. Lake Forest invested roughly $2,000 in high quality production equipment and software to launch the endeavor. The remaining costs included the time for one staff member to set up the feed for each meeting and one staff member to act as moderator and read the public comments. • Accepting or reading public comments through Facebook has pros and cons. Though Lake Forest has experienced success so far, the practice is relatively new and not without some potential risk. Cities should identify and evaluate the pros and cons before testing this approach in a public forum. • Social media policies should be reviewed and updated before integrating Facebook Live into a city’s communications plan. If the policy is up to date and accessible to both city staff and residents, staff will more easily be able to moderate online discussions and determine whether and how to respond to comments.

Enroll in ILG’s TIERS (Think, Initiate, Engage, Review, Shift) workshop and learn a step-bystep framework to successfully launch your next public engagement effort. This training program helps cities better implement community outreach by addressing each agency’s unique priorities. The workshop offers ways to integrate public engagement into social media strategy, General Plan updates, climate readiness planning, budgeting activities and more. The next TIERS workshop will be held Sept. 5–6, 2019, in San Diego. Find more information at www.

• Cities should establish clear ground rules for accepting online comments. In Lake Forest, only comments marked “COMMENT FOR COUNCIL” are read aloud and included in the meeting minutes. Any other comments are omitted from the public record but remain on the stream, viewable any time the meeting is accessed on Facebook. Lake Forest staff agrees that using social media involves a unique combination of risks and rewards. “We are trying to reach a balance between risk and innovation,” says Lake Forest City Manager Debra Rose. “So far, this risk has paid off with increased community engagement and has inspired staff to explore new ways to use technology to reach our residents.” ■

Melissa Kuehne is communications and development manager for the Institute for Local Government and can be reached at


League of California Cities

Amplify Your Advocacy: League Mobile App Instantly Connects City Officials With Legislators by Bismarck Obando California’s Capitol buzzes with activity during the spring and summer. The League staff — along with city officials, contract lobbyists and a variety of coalition partners — communicates the views of cities directly to legislators and their staff and provides testimony in committee meetings. Although the League uses a number of tools to advocate on behalf of cities, the voices of its members are its most powerful and important tool. Advocating with united voices on key city-related legislation in a rapid manner is critically important.

Keeping Track of Current Legislation The Legislature has introduced over 2,500 bills so far in 2019. The League actively advocates for hundreds of bills each year on a wide range of legislative issues of interest to cities. Keeping track of legislation and priority bills that affect your city can be challenging, whether you are a council member with years of experience or new to legislative activities. To help city officials with this challenge, the League developed an innovative advocacy tool. This mobile application enables city officials to respond promptly when the League issues calls to action on legislation via an alert sent directly to their cellphone or mobile device using a text message or push notification.

Tool Streamlines the Advocacy Process Though any member of the public can download the League app, the League’s Legislative Advocacy section within the app is available only to city officials who sign up and volunteer to be part of the League’s Advocacy Team. In addition to receiving timely updates and calls to action via mobile devices about important legislation impacting cities, Advocacy Team members have full mobile access to the Action Center and Hot Issues pages. To sign up: 1. Contact your regional public affairs manager to obtain a registration form. (To find your regional public affairs manager, visit 2. Complete the registration form and send it to your regional public affairs manager or the League’s Sacramento office. After your registration is submitted, you will receive a confirmation email with your user name and login instructions. Over the past few years, the League has implemented several advocacy programs that have supported California cities’ significant achievements in the legislative arena. Providing a tool that allows

city officials to quickly reach a legislator’s office during a crucial legislative vote complements the work of the League lobbyists in the state Capitol and the grassroots mobilization on legislation conducted every day by the League’s regional public affairs managers. If you have questions about joining the League’s Advocacy Team or want to obtain a registration form, email your regional public affairs manager or Bismarck Obando, director of public affairs, at ■

Advocacy Tip: Develop a Relationship With Your Legislators Get to know your Senate and Assembly representatives and their staff at their district and Capitol offices. Learn about their backgrounds and what motivates them. One of the most helpful things you can do — both for your city and your legislator — is become a resource to them. By educating them on issues facing your city and providing them with regular updates, you build your credibility and make their work a little easier. Meet regularly with your legislators both in Sacramento and in the district. Don’t wait to meet with them until there is a problem or you want something. Throughout the year, brief them on the League priority issues, topics of importance at the local level and how much their support of local control means. Praise in public, criticize in private. If your legislator has a good record on local control, thank him or her. If he or she has a less than stellar record, ask why. Just remember to think carefully about how you and the League can work with your legislator without burning any bridges. Find more tips at

Bismarck Obando is director of public affairs for the League and can be reached at

Western City, June 2019


Safe Sidewalk Vending Act Curbs

What You Need by Joaquin Vazquez On Sept.17, 2018, then-Gov. Jerry Brown signed SB 946 (Chapter 459, Statutes of 2018), the Safe Sidewalk Vending Act (SSVA) into law. This article addresses common questions cities have in responding to the SSVA, which took effect Jan.1, 2019.

The Intent of the Safe Sidewalk Vending Act The SSVA states that the Legislature’s intent was to “promote entrepreneurship and support immigrant and low-income communities.” The legislative findings note that sidewalk vending provides an avenue for local entrepreneurship, especially among immigrant and lowincome communities. Prior to passage of the SSVA, cities had established a diverse patchwork of ordinances regulating or banning sidewalk vending pursuant to their constitutional police power. On Jan. 25, 2017, President Trump issued Executive Order 13767 to modify the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s “criminal alien policy,” which

expanded the number of immigrants who could be considered a deportation priority to include those who had committed minor violations of local sidewalk vending ordinances. In response, state Senator Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) sponsored the SSVA to protect susceptible entrepreneurs from criminalization and deportation. The SSVA establishes parameters “for local regulation of sidewalk vendors to ensure that local governments can’t directly or indirectly ban sidewalk vending.”

Defining the Term “Sidewalk Vendor” A sidewalk vendor is a person who sells food or merchandise with or without the use of a pushcart, stand or other nonmotorized conveyance in certain public areas. Sidewalk vendors who sell food or merchandise and move from place to place are known as “roaming” vendors and may stop to complete a sale. In contrast, “stationary” sidewalk vendors conduct business from a fixed location.

Joaquin Vazquez is a partner with the law firm of Olivarez Madruga Lemieux O’Neill LLP and can be reached at


League of California Cities

Are All Cities Required to Adopt New Sidewalk Vending Programs? No. If a city’s existing sidewalk vending program “substantially complies” with the SSVA, it is not required to adopt a new one. Cities should review their current sidewalk vending regulations to ensure compliance with the SSVA.

Must Local Sidewalk Vending Regulations Be Adopted by Ordinance? No. The SSVA does not require cities to adopt regulations by ordinance, so cities may adopt regulatory programs by resolution. Given the SSVA’s general ambiguity, adoption by resolution may be advantageous to allow for nimble program amendments without enduring code amendment/ordinance procedural hurdles. Note that a violation of an ordinance –– not a resolution –– is a misdemeanor under state law, but given the SSVA’s bar on imposing criminal liability for sidewalk vending violations, this distinction is likely of no consequence.

Cities may prohibit sidewalk vendors from the immediate vicinity of a certified permitted farmers market under certain conditions.

Local Regulations:

to Know General Limits on Local Sidewalk Vendor Regulatory Programs A city may regulate sidewalk vending only as provided in the SSVA, which defines sidewalk vending as occurring only “upon a public sidewalk or other pedestrian path.” Although the SSVA separately addresses sidewalk vending regulations in public parks, it does not require cities to allow sidewalk vending in other publicly controlled areas (such as stadiums or auditoriums). Generally, the SSVA prohibits certain city-imposed restrictions unless they are supported by appropriate objective findings. Unsupported restrictions may be subject to legal challenge under the SSVA, which specifies certain regulatory allowances and restrictions as shown in the table, “Specific Restrictions of the Safe Sidewalk Vending Act” at right.



Restrict a vendor to operating within a specific area of the public right of way.

• Restrict a vendor to operating within a specific area of the public right of way if supported by findings of a direct relation to objective health, safety or welfare concerns (for example, prohibiting sales near schools at the beginning or end of the school day to prevent sidewalk overcrowding and pedestrian or vehicular hazards); and • Bar stationary sidewalk vendors from residential zones.

Require a vendor to first obtain approval from a nongovernmental entity before conducting business (for example, a ServSafe certification from the National Restaurant Association).

Require a specific city vending license or permit or a general business license.

Prohibit a vendor from selling food or merchandise in a park owned or operated by the city.

• Prohibit a vendor from selling food or merchandise in a park owned or operated by the city if the city has a contract giving a concessionaire the exclusive right to sell food or merchandise in the park; and • Adopt time, place and manner requirements for vending in a park owned or operated by the city if the requirement is directly related to objective health, safety or welfare concerns; necessary to ensure the public’s use and enjoyment of natural resources and recreational opportunities; or necessary to prevent an undue concentration of commercial activity that unreasonably interferes with the park’s scenic and natural character.

Yes. Cities can adopt time, place and manner requirements if they’re directly related to objective health, safety or

This column is provided as general information and not as legal advice. The law is constantly evolving, and attorneys can and do disagree about what the law requires. Local agencies interested in determining how the law applies in a particular situation should consult their local agency attorneys.

Specific Restrictions of the Safe Sidewalk Vending Act

Can Cities Adopt Additional Regulations?

continued on page 26

About Legal Notes

Restrict the overall number of vendors.

Restrict the overall number of vendors if directly related to health, safety or welfare concerns.



During a Cyberattack:

The Next Crisis Frontier for Cities by Scott Summerfield California is in the midst of one of its most crisis-filled periods on record, and it seems as if we’re perpetually managing fires, mudslides, drought and more — at the same time we’re focused on community resiliency. But one crisis of confidence lurks within every city and has the potential to cripple operations and destroy public trust: a cyberattack.

to the world, with your internal and external stakeholders blaming you for allowing it to happen.

What Can Go Wrong

• $8 million — the average cost of a data breach in the United States.

Local agencies are a favorite target because they often haven’t created safeguards. Think about what can happen if a cyberattacker seizes control of your data and your systems, whether it is the theft and public release of information or a ransomware hostage situation. Resident/customer information, billing and payment systems, 911 dispatch, human resources and payroll records, legal documents, traffic controls and countless other systems and services can go offline or become inaccessible in an instant. Your city’s network and systems are only as strong as their users, and most attacks are the result of staff members inadvertently clicking on a dangerous email rather than organized internal or external system breaches. Suddenly your most sensitive information is open

How much risk is involved? Statistics for 2018 tell the story: • $8 billion in damages caused by ransomware globally; • 5 billion online records leaked or stolen; and

The risk is clear. The task for council members and staff leadership is to reduce that risk through strategic planning and effective communication. I recently attended an IBM Security Cyber Range simulation in a Cambridge, Massachusetts, facility designed specifically to help organizations recognize what happens when cyberattackers strike. A small group representing some of the world’s largest financial and insurance services companies experienced how a cyberattack unfolds and how to manage organizational and media responses. Using a broadcast TV studio, a social media simulation platform and other eye-opening resources, IBM’s experts stressed that we

Scott Summerfield is a principal of California-based SAE Communications and can be reached at


League of California Cities

must consider our actions to be a business response tied to a security culture, not a technology response. And leadership is a vital part of keeping our businesses — our cities — operating in the wake of an attack while every aspect of our organization is scrutinized. Communication is at the top of a successful cyberattack response along with a clear pre-crisis understanding of all city database vulnerabilities, and city leaders and communicators are just as important as those who investigate what happened and restore services. Cybersecurity experts consistently note three inviolable communications guidelines: • Openness with those affected; • Transparency in explaining what happened; and • Honesty about the attack’s scope. Those tenets are frequently missing from cyberattack responses, and bad situations are made worse by a communications vacuum, rumor, innuendo and fear.

Your stakeholders will express a range of feelings including outrage, disappointment, worry and confusion. They will ask pointed questions. How did you let this happen? Are my kids safe? Is my credit impacted? How are you going to get services restarted? When will things be back to normal?

Lessons Learned From Atlanta The City of Atlanta faced about $20 million in recovery costs from a ransomware attack in 2018, which shut down most of its operations for two weeks. Considering the attackers’ first ransom request was for about $50,000 and the city had warnings for several months before the attack, much can be learned from how this crisis was handled and how it could have been prevented. Analysis of the Atlanta case reveals several important considerations for city leaders who may someday face their own version of this nightmare. continued

Attackers often have access to systems for several months before taking action.

Western City, June 2019


Communicating During a Cyberattack: The Next Crisis Frontier for Cities, continued

Risk Builds Over Many Years. An independent auditor warned city officials eight years before the attack that the city had insufficient funding for business continuity and disaster recovery plans. Attackers often have access to systems for several months before taking action. It Won’t End Soon. Several months after the initial attack, more than a third of the city’s software programs were still offline or partially disabled, and nearly a third of those were considered “mission critical.”

Finger-Pointing Will Linger. City officials continue to blame each other for the attack, undermining public confidence in city operations. Pundits throughout your community will also second-guess your security measures and response efforts. Paying Ransom Is a Tough Call. It’s easy to question the city’s decision not to pay ransom (especially given the relatively small initial request versus the amount spent on recovery), but refusing to give in to criminals is an understandable reaction.

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Local agencies are a favorite target because they often haven’t created safeguards.

Contact With Hackers Can End Quickly. After law enforcement agencies get involved, criminals may abandon their ransom request in an attempt to elude identification and capture. This leaves the city with no choice but to rebuild its systems from backups — if they exist.

2. Be a “Nudge.” Communication is one of the most important elements of a viable cyberattack response. As a city leader (whether elected, appointed or staff), your input must be part of the response, even if it means sometimes being a pest. Continually ask tough questions about the attack’s scope and recovery progress.

Explaining “What Happened” May Be Difficult. Investigating agencies may limit communication about the cause, especially if known international hackers are suspects. This information void feeds the rumor mill and impedes the city’s ability to fully inform its stakeholders.

3. Help Prevent an Attack. Craft an educational program for staff centered on spotting phishing and other attack triggers in personal email accounts; this behavior will carry into the workplace.

10 Steps to Help Your City Prepare for and Respond to an Attack Consider these steps when developing your city’s plan. 1. Know Your Exposure. Meet with your information management staff and department heads for an in-depth and brutally honest discussion about your city’s cyberattack vulnerabilities.

4. Highlight the Risk. Ensure that staff understands the potential damage to your city and those you serve, the costs of data recovery and the damage to your credibility when information is stolen or held hostage. 5. Focus on New Hires. Include cybersecurity in orientation materials and briefings, and emphasize your city’s commitment to protecting its information. 6. Plan Your Response. Make sure your emergency response and crisis communications plans include cyberattack, and don’t forget about your staff, who will be affected in many ways. 7. Identify Your Team. Chaos will likely ensue if your city is attacked, and you’ll need to immediately gather your designated crisis response team, including your local FBI, Department of Homeland Security, Secret Service and other partner agency contacts. Pull your team together and build relationships now, as you won’t have time when the attack occurs. 8. Anticipate Outrage. Your stakeholders will be angry and confused, and communicating with heartfelt empathy will help you tell your city’s response story more effectively. 9. Prepare for Questions. Though each attack is different, you can begin drafting your answers to questions you’re most likely to be asked by your stakeholders and the media and modify your responses as necessary during the crisis. Identify your attack-related spokesperson and train them for a high-visibility response. 10. Create Response Documents. Develop cyberattack statements, social media posts prepared in advance, news releases and staff communication scripts that are written in plain language and can be deployed quickly. Tell your resiliency story whenever possible. Our stakeholders expect us to anticipate bad things, and we can increase confidence by noting our challenges, highlighting what we’re doing to keep information safe and committing to honesty when something happens. City officials can use a variety of tools to build confidence, such as scheduling a policy leader update, holding community and staff forums, spurring an online discussion and pitching a media story. The more we focus on cybersecurity, the less likely we are to become victims. Good planning is the foundation for a well-developed response. With a bit of effort — and a deep understanding of our vulnerabilities — we can take the necessary steps to keep our cities safer when data thieves pay us an unwanted visit. ■

Western City, June 2019


Innovative by Lessons from Sized Cities


League of California Cities

Necessity: Modestly by David Graham

Collaborative, innovative and agile are common traits of small and medium-sized cities. Several lessons we can learn from modestly sized cities also apply to cities of all sizes. Small to medium-sized cities have innovation in their “bones” — it’s just a matter of tapping into that potential.

Looking in-house for tech expertise For 18 years, the Center for Digital Government has conducted the annual Digital Cities Survey to recognize cities that are using technology to be open, citizencentric, secure, efficient and collaborative in problem-solving. In 2018, three California municipalities ranked in the top 10 for cities with a population of 125,000 to 249,999 — Pasadena, Rancho Cucamonga and Corona. All three cities are leaders in data-driven decisionmaking, digital transformation and expanding online accessibility. Rancho Cucamonga was an early leader in

enabling the public to easily make service requests for problems like graffiti via a digital application. Early adoption of new technology can be advantageous but early adopters may later find themselves locked into early generation systems that later hinder adaptability, and this occurred in Rancho Cucamonga. Due to a series of private-sector acquisitions where companies changed ownership, the city’s app was left without significant support. In a conversation with Darryl Polk, the head of Rancho Cucamonga’s Department of Innovation, I asked what he did when they realized the city’s legacy app was becoming defunct. “I asked the team to dig deep and see if we could do this ourselves,” said Polk, and 120 days later RC2GO was born. Available on Google Play and the Apple Store, this resident service request app uses the city’s existing geographic information system (GIS) platform to deliver an excellent experience for residents. The app provides greater internal control — and was built

in-house. Every small to medium-sized city may not be able to mirror this experience, but the take-away is a lesson in selfreliance. When solving digital challenges, cities should consider in-house options before seeking outside resources — because city staff has superior knowledge of their residents’ needs.

making data available Another mid-sized city, Corona in western Riverside County, is also leading in digital transformation. Selected for the Bloomberg Philanthropies “What Works Cities” initiative, Corona has made great strides in data-driven decisionmaking, has launched an open data portal and is using performance measures to improve procurement. Almost 30 years ago, Corona was a sleepy agricultural hamlet between the cities of Anaheim and Riverside. Then came the development boom, which more than continued

David Graham is chief innovation officer for the City of Carlsbad and can be reached at

Western City, June 2019


Innovative by Necessity: Lessons From Modestly Sized Cities, continued

When solving digital challenges, cities should consider in-house options before seeking outside resources.

doubled Corona’s population. Development brought the usual growing pains and resident inquiries about the inevitable associated disruption. The city was tracking data about development and public works projects, but to get that information, residents had to contact staff directly, an inefficient approach that sapped city resources. Chris McMasters, Corona’s chief information officer, realized that the data residents wanted was available, but it wasn’t easily accessible. Using its GIS platform, the city launched the Construction Projects Story Map, which lets users see information about development and public works projects. Staff added story maps for regular resident requests like power outages, street sweeping and emergency preparedness. Accessible online or on mobile devices, these user-friendly tools ease the pressure of resident inquiries on city staff. “We have the data,” says McMasters, “but to unleash its value, it should be visual and accessible.” Providing visual data and making it public furthers transparency, and it may also save staff time and effort. In many cases, the city has the data — it just needs to be “unlocked” to provide real value to city staff and the public.

Digital Is feasible Having worked with cities of all sizes throughout North America, I am constantly asked how it’s possible to fund innovation given finite resources and the pressures on city budgets. The better question is how cities can afford not to be


League of California Cities

innovative, given the constantly changing nature of the world. Innovation is simply finding insights and connecting them to value — for the city and for its residents and businesses. One way to gain those insights is by developing authentic connection with a broad and diverse array of residents. Digital tools can provide a cost-effective way to do this. In the City of Carlsbad where I work, our elected officials are focused on community engagement. With a new city manager and the first chief innovation officer in the region, people have high expectations about what the city can do to engage the public. We conduct a biannual resident satisfaction survey, employ fun ways of engaging people on public projects — and are increasingly turning to digital tools to reach people who aren’t regularly involved in civic decisionmaking. As staff approached the budget process, the new city manager realized that the public wasn’t involved in establishing budget priorities and residents’ input was received after the budget was essentially completed. “The budget is the most significant policy document we issue every year, and the public needs to have a voice in developing its priorities from the beginning,” says Carlsbad City Manager Scott Chadwick. Changing long-standing practice, Chadwick shook things up and shifted community engagement activities to the beginning of the budget process. The city

invited residents to be involved directly with department directors as they created budget priorities. This in-person meeting resulted in valuable co-creation of budget priorities by the public and city experts. Given the demands of everyday life, however, it’s not easy for the vast majority of people to find time to participate; so alongside the in-person engagement, the Carlsbad Communications Department launched an online, mobile portal for the budget prioritization process. The cost was minimal, and 30 times more people participated using the mobile portal than attended the in-person meeting. Face-to-face engagement has significant value — and when coupled with digital engagement, a more holistic picture emerges. The cost of digital engagement tools has decreased to the point that digital is now feasible.

Modest-Sized Cities Rule Small and medium-sized cities offer many lessons. Though they’re not always topping global popularity charts, they are charting a course for cities that want to be competitive. These cities look to inhouse resources to solve problems prior to procuring outside experts. They are unleashing the power of data by making it visual and accessible. They are coupling the close connection they have with their residents with digital tools to create authentic relationships with the people they serve. Small to medium-sized cities are innovative by necessity and have traits that can be a model for organizations of all sizes. ■

















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Call Cici Trino at (916) 961-9999 to place a display (boxed) ad or for rate and deadline information, or email Website Job Postings Display ads are posted on our website at no additional charge. But if you miss the deadline for getting your job opportunity ad into the magazine, you can post it on the Western City website right away. To post your job opportunity ad on our automated website, visit or contact Savannah Cobbs, Western City administrative assistant; email: scobbs@; phone: (916) 658-8223.

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Senior Accountant Population: 7,000 City of Huron seeks a senior accountant to perform highly skilled municipal accounting functions in City’s Finance Department. Duties include compiling and analyzing financial data; making General Ledger entries; maintaining subsidiary journals; processing monthend and year-end accounting transactions; preparing a variety of financial records, statements and reports; reconciling subsidiary records and bank statements; verifying the accuracy and completeness of financial data; assisting with the preparation of the Comprehensive Annual Financial Report; and performing related duties. Requires an Associate’s Degree or Bachelor’s Degree in accounting, business, finance, public administration or related field and at least 5 years of accounting or financial experience OR an equivalent combination of education and experience demonstrating an ability to perform the functions of the position. Salary is DOQ. Email cover letter and resume by July 1, 2019, at 5:00 p.m., to City Manager Jack Castro at or send by U.S. mail to P.O. 339, Huron, California 93234. Inquiries and questions can be directed to City Manager Jack Castro at his office at (559) 945-2241 or on his cell phone at (559) 647-9016.

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Finance Director The City of McFarland is seeking a full-time Finance Director, to join the Finance Division. This position requires a self-motivated individual that has at least 3-5 years of accounting/finance experience, strong understanding of accounting principles and theory along with strong Excel knowledge. Preferably possession of a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration, Accounting, or related-field. Good knowledge of GAAP and willingness to research and resolve accounting issues. Eligible candidate will apply GAAP in performing account reconciliations, analyzing financial transactions, preparing journal entries, monthend closing, audit and preparing financial reports.

Western City magazine will deliver your advertising message to thousands of key decision-makers and city officials throughout California. A variety of advertising options are available to make reaching this target audience as easy as possible: Display Advertising A display ad in Western City connects you with all of the key people who approve city purchases in California. Frequency discounts are available. Job Opportunity Advertising When you place any job opportunity ad in Western City, you also receive a free website posting on the magazine’s website for the same month. Job Opportunity Postings If you missed the deadline for getting your position included in the magazine’s job opportunities section, we can list it right away on the Western City website.

Interested applicants must submit a City employment application with 3-5 year salary history to: City of McFarland, Attn: Claudia Ceja, 401 West Kern Avenue, McFarland, and CA. 93250. You can request an application and job description by calling (661) 792-3091 or email Application deadline: Open until filled. Salary DOE. McFarland is an equal opportunity employer.

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Celebrating 19 Years Serving the Public Sector! Current & Upcoming Opportunities People Assisting the Homeless (PATH), CA Deputy Chief Financial Officer Ever since it was founded in 1984, PATH has pioneered bold and effective approaches to assist people experiencing homelessness. PATH operates services throughout California, connecting clients to a comprehensive continuum of homelessness prevention, street outreach, employment preparation and placement assistance, individualized case management, supportive services, interim housing, and permanent supportive housing. PATH is seeking an experienced Deputy Chief Financial Officer who is team-oriented, a collaborative leader, and passionate about helping people. An innovative leader that inspires teamwork, builds relationships, mentors and coaches’ staff, is solution oriented, transparent and an open communicator. Salary is commensurate with qualifications and experience. Minimum bachelor’s degree in finance, accounting, or a related field; higher level degree and/or professional certifications preferred. A minimum of ten years of experience in non-profit finance/accounting. Contact: Ms. Valerie Phillips, (916) 784-9080 – Filing Deadline: June 9, 2019

City of Rocklin, CA

Director of Parks & Recreation

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City of Jurupa Valley, CA City Manager

If you are interested in these outstanding opportunities, visit our website to apply online.

City Manager City of Belmont, CA

With its lush wooded hills, vast stretches of open space, and striking views of San Francisco Bay, the City of Belmont is one of the most desirable communities in San Mateo County. This tranquil, affluent residential community of approximately 27,000 people is situated in the heart of the culturally and technologically rich Bay Area. The City enjoys a progressive and collaborative five-member City Council that is respectful of staff and is focused on issues relating to economic development, downtown revitalization, and affordable housing; pavement and major transportation improvements; financing plans for infrastructure and services; and park and recreation improvements. Belmont is a cooperative regional player in issues impacting the Peninsula. Operating with a lean, but mighty, committed staff of approximately 136 employees, the City provides a full range of services. Departments include Finance, Human Resources, Information Services, Planning & Community Development, Parks & Recreation, Public Works, and Police. Fire services are provided through a JPA with the cities of San Mateo and Foster City. In addition, the City Council appoints a City Attorney. The formerly elected City Clerk and City Treasurer positions will change to appointed positions effective in November 2019. The City of Belmont is fiscally stable, and the FY 2019 total budget is $108.9 million, including a General Fund budget of $23.8 million. The desired City Manager brings calm and thoughtful leadership; an ability to work effectively with an elected body, staff, and regional players; a creative and visionary approach; and the ability to roll up her/his sleeves. Experience as a City Manager, Assistant City Manager, or other leadership position within a local government agency is desired. A Bachelor’s degree in public/business administration, finance, urban planning, or a related field is required; a Master’s degree is desirable. The City of Belmont is offering a competitive salary and compensation package. Filing deadline is July 8, 2019. Contact Bobbi Peckham.

Assistant City Manager City of American Canyon, CA

Located in world-famous wine-growing Napa County, American Canyon is home to an engaged, diverse, and growing community exceeding 20,000 residents. The city plans for a population of 25,000 by 2025. It is a destination for outdoor recreation and natural beauty as well as a hub of opportunity and economic vitality. This general law city has a general fund 2018/19 budget of approximately $22.9 million, all-city funds budget totaling $49.8 million, and approximately 82 FTE’s. Departments include Administration, Finance, Public Works, Community Development, and Police/Sheriff contract. Appointed by and supporting the City Manager, the Assistant City Manager will direct operations of Finance, Information Technology, and the City Clerk’s office, as well as manage various functions of Human Resources, including labor relations and risk management. The Assistant City Manager will focus on the internal organization and have a high level of comfort with all functions of the operating departments. The City Manager is seeking an energetic and quick learner, a personable strong leader and decision maker, and an individual who brings the tools, network, and resources necessary to be effective. A Bachelor’s degree with major coursework in public or business administration, finance, human resources management, or a related field is required. A Master’s degree is highly desirable. Annual salary is up to $189,182 DOQE with competitive benefit package. Filing deadline is July 3, 2019. Contact Bobbi Peckham.

“All about fit” City Manager City of Aspen, CO

Aspen, CO, (pop. 6,700) needs little introduction. A premiere, internationally-acclaimed resort community set high in the majestic Rocky Mountains, Aspen attracts skiers to its famous slopes, intellectual tourists to the Aspen Institute, and music and art lovers to its summer Music Festival and School. At an elevation of 8,000 feet in the spectacular Roaring Fork Valley, Aspen’s daytime population swells to well over 25,000 during ski and summer seasons. Citizens are full-time residents and second homeowners, who are highly engaged, educated, and passionate, with diverse opinions reaching every corner. The five-member city council seeks an experienced, savvy municipal leader, who appreciates Aspen not only as a world-class destination and a definitive Colorado landmark, but as her or his home. Major issues incude affordable housing, citizen engagement, the environment, regional collaboration, sustainability, transportation, and new city office projects ($48.1 million), among others. Four-year degree in relevant field of study, preferably public administration, political science or business administration required. Graduate education preferred. Seven years of progressively responsible experience in local government, including five years of executive or senior management experience. Municipal management experience preferred, experience in resort communities helpful. Comprehensive benefits. The hiring range for this opportunity is $180,000 to $214,000 DOQE. Housing allowance and relocation assistance are subject to negotiation. Filing deadline is July 8, 2019. Contact Andrew Gorgey.

Congratulations to our Recent Placements! Nikki Salas, City Manager, City of Barstow, CA Kathy Gerla, City Attorney, City of Bellevue, WA Chris Bothwell, Finance Director, City of Bothell, WA Michael Ciaravino, City Manager, City of Mill Creek, WA Jack Holden, Building Official, City of San Clemente, CA Kay Simonson, Planning Director, San Miguel County, CO Julio Garcia, Human Resources Director, Metro, Portland, OR Kimberlee McArthur, Building Official, City of Beaverton, OR Kate Sampson, Human Resources Director, Placer County, CA Terrence Grindall, Assistant City Manager, City of Brentwood, CA Lisa Jenkins, Human Resources Director, City of Manhattan Beach, CA Jane Christenson, Assistant County Executive Officer, Placer County, CA Patricia Anderson Wieck, Human Resources Director, City of Beaverton, OR Maria Elena DeGuevara, Human Resources Director, Santa Barbara County, CA Joe Ambrosini, Director of Human Resources, Cosumnes Community Services District, CA

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Safe Sidewalk Vending Act Curbs Local Regulations: What You Need to Know, continued from page 13

welfare concerns. The SSVA identifies certain examples of such requirements: • Adherence to limited hours of operation that are not unduly restrictive (limits on operating hours in a nonresidential area must be consistent with such limits for other businesses on the same street);

Permissible Administrative Fines for Sidewalk Vending Violations Violation Description

Maximum Fine

First violation


Second violation within one year of first violation


Each additional violation within one year of first violation


• Maintenance of sanitary conditions; • Compliance with disability access requirements; • Possession of a valid California Department of Tax and Fee Administration seller’s permit; • Compliance with generally applicable laws; • Possession of licenses required from other state or local agencies; and • Possession of a city permit or license for sidewalk vending.

Restrictions on Farmers Markets, Swap Meets and Temporary Special Permit Areas Cities may prohibit –– during applicable hours –– sidewalk vendors from the immediate vicinity of a certified permitted farmers market or swap meet or from the immediate vicinity of an area subject to a temporary special city permit (for example, encroachment or special event permits) for events such as parades or outdoor concerts.

Defining Valid Objective Health, Safety or Welfare Concerns The SSVA does not define what constitutes a valid objective health, safety or welfare concern that may support additional local restrictions, including those pertaining to city parks or a cap on the number of street vendor permits. It does, however, specify that “perceived community animus or economic competition does not constitute an objective health, safety or welfare concern.”


League of California Cities

Enforcement Tools Available to Cities The SSVA prohibits cities from imposing criminal penalties for sidewalk vending violations (misdemeanors or infractions). Only administrative fines may be issued, as shown in the table above. A city that issues sidewalk vending permits may rescind such a permit upon the fourth violation or subsequent violations and impose increased fines for vendors conducting business without a proper permit.

Should Cities Treat Fines for Sidewalk Vending Violations Like Other Administrative Fines? No. The SSVA has unique provisions outlining specific determination and notice requirements. When assessing an administrative citation for street vending, a city must notify the individual receiving the citation that he or she can request an ability-to-pay determination. If the individual receives certain specified public benefits or is found to have a monthly income at or below 125 percent of the federal poverty guidelines, the city must accept 20 percent of the fine amount in full satisfaction of the administrative fine. Cities may also: • Allow a recipient of an administrative fine to complete community service in lieu of paying the total administrative fine;

Unanswered Questions The SSVA has some ambiguous areas that continue to make regulating sidewalk vending challenging for cities. The following questions remain to be answered: • Because the SSVA does not define “merchandise,” what limits exist on the nonfood items that a street vendor can sell? • How much in common must a city sidewalk vending program have with the SSVA’s provisions to constitute “substantial compliance” so the city can avoid amending its program? • Because the SSVA does not define “objective health, safety or welfare concerns,” how much will courts defer to cities in identifying such concerns? • Similarly, to what extent will courts defer to cities in determining the reasonableness of locally adopted time, place and manner restrictions? • Because the SSVA limits local enforcement to the issuance of administrative fines, subject to an ability-to-pay determination, how can cities effectively deal with noncompliant, repeat offenders?

Moving Ahead In light of the SSVA’s ambiguity, cities are encouraged to support their sidewalk vending regulations with clear administrative records and robust findings to decrease the risk of legal challenges. ■

• Completely waive the administrative fine; or • Offer an alternative disposition.

Looking for Footnotes?

It is recommended that cities adequately train enforcement staff to ensure that fines are issued and resolved in compliance with the SSVA.

For a fully footnoted version, read this article online at



























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What first inspired you to run for the city council? Read more “On the Record” at

Akilah Weber Council Member La Mesa

Paige Lampson Mayor Galt

Justin Cummings Vice Mayor Santa Cruz

I saw that we needed broader, more diverse representation on the council.

I’d been very active in the community, and it was my turn to step up and serve.

Tenants were being displaced by rental increases, and I wanted to stand up for them.

Marilyn Ezzy Ashcraft Mayor Alameda

James “Bo” Sheppard Vice Mayor Biggs

Anita Enander Council Member Los Altos

I grew up here and co-chaired a fundraising campaign to build our main library. Working with city staff got me interested.

I grew up in a family whose members served on the council — it was a natural progression.

Concern about retaining local control over landuse issues.

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Western City June 2019  

Western City June 2019