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City Council Approves Shelter Site Purchase

City will buy more than 17 acres of land on East Brundage Lane

Before a nearly capacity crowd in the City Council Chambers, following more than two dozen public speakers, the City Council Wednesday night approved the purchase of property to be used as a future emergency low-barrier homeless shelter.

The Council voted 4-3 to approve the purchase agreement to buy the Calcot property at 1900 East Brundage Lane. Councilmembers Andrae Gonzales (Ward 2), Ken Weir (3), Bob Smith (4) and Bruce Freeman (5) voted in favor of the purchase; Vice Mayor Chris Parlier (7), and Councilmembers Willie Rivera (1) and Jacquie Sullivan (6) opposed the purchase.

The vote came after months of Council meetings and several community outreach meetings held to allow the public to ask questions and voice their concerns about the search for a suitable homeless shelter site.

The purchase agreement is for 7.24 acres of office space property at a cost of $3.8 million, and another $1.1 million for an additional 10 acres of vacant property adjacent to the office space. The project plan includes the opportunity to use some of the office space for a future Bakersfield Police substation. A concept layout for the project may be viewed in the PDF linked below.

The money used to purchase the location will come from funds raised by the Public Safety & Vital Services Measure (Measure N).

In a separate unanimous vote following the purchase agreement, the Council directed City Staff to develop neighborhood improvement plans for the area surrounding the East Brundage location, as well as the area surrounding the site of a new Kern County homeless shelter project, currently underway.

Council also voted unanimously to contribute $500,000 to the County's project, a contribution that is renewable annually by Council approval.

Security Patrol Program Extended
After a successful three-month pilot program, the City Council voted 7-0 Wednesday night to extend the security patrol contract with Trans-West Security Services to June 30, 2020. The agreement is not to exceed $360,000 annually.

In September, the Council approved the 90-day pilot program with Trans-West to provide up to four security officers to patrol various high-crime areas as directed by the Bakersfield Police Department.

The program was paid for by the Public Safety & Vital Services Measure (Measure N) in order to provide a visible security presence to address quality of life crime concerns.

New City Manager Employment Agreement Approved
The City Council approved extending an employment agreement to Christian Clegg, selected by the Council on Jan. 17 to become Bakersfield's new City Manager.

The action was approved 6-1, with Councilmember Ken Weir (Ward 3) opposing.

Clegg, a Deputy City Manager for the City of Stockton, Calif., will succeed Alan Tandy after 27 years in the role.

( View PDF )