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Fullerton City Lights Citizen SRO Advisory Committee Minutes

City Lights Citizen SRO Advisory Committee
Meeting Minutes February 2, 2006 4:00PM


Meeting Called to Order: William McGarvey III called the meeting to order at 4:00 P.M.
Members Present: Paul Andresen, Sunbie Harrell, Carolyn Johnson, Glenna Axe
Members Absent:None
Staff Present: Linda R. Morad, Housing Programs Supervisor
Kim Husereau, Clerical Assistant III
Project Management:Katherine Conrad, Regional Manager, Solari Enterprises, Inc.
Bert Jones, On-Site Manager, Fullerton City Lights SRO
Eric Miller, Assistant Manager, Fullerton City Lights SRO

A. Roll Call

Chairman McGarvey called the meeting to order, conducted a brief roll call and confirmed that a quorum was present.

B. Approval of Minutes

Chairman McGarvey confirmed that all members had received and reviewed the October 6, 2005 Minutes.

A MOTION was made by Committee Member Axe, SECONDED by Member Johnson, and CARRIED unanimously by Members present to APPROVE the Minutes of October 6, 2005.

C. Discussion Of Work Program/Activities

1. Report On Quarterly Inspections

City Staff Report


A copy of the Re-inspection Summary Report for inspections conducted February 1, 2006 composed by Inspector Piatt of CHS, Inc. (dated 02/02/06) was provided to all parties present. This report provides an update on items requiring correction as noted by Inspector Sheehan of CHS during the on-site SRO inspections conducted October, 2005. The report indicates numerous units still in need of repair or replacement of heating/AC, two units with continued housekeeping issues (units 410 and 414) and one minor correction required in unit 234. Ms. Conrad of Solari Enterprises stated that she accompanied Inspector Piatt on his re-inspection visit and felt encouraged to see that the problems listed in the October inspection report had been addressed. She added that the new staff at the facility is working diligently to address incoming work orders in an expedient manner and noted that the item requiring correction in unit 234 had already been resolved.

Chairman McGarvey observed that the inspections reflected issues relating to individual unit conditions, however, the common areas in the building were in good order.

Committee Report

A printed summary of notes taken by Committee Members during their inspections conducted throughout the first week of January, 2006 was distributed to all present. Ms. Morad advised that copies of this report will be provided to Staff Inspectors to utilize in future inspections. SRO Management Staff were provided with copies to allow them to follow-up on matters requiring correction.

Member Johnson inquired about a notation that one resident had a Pit-bull dog present in their unit. Ms. Conrad explained that animals are only allowed in cases were a physician's note is provided that requires the animal to live on premises as an "assistance animal." Such is the case with regard to the resident that owns the Pit-bull.

Assistant Manager Miller interjected that in general all of the animals currently living on premises are small breeds and have not presented any noise issues.

Chairman McGarvey called for each Member to speak about their inspection visit and describe their overall impression regarding the condition of the building and the units they observed. He asked that those Members which had participated in inspections during previous years should include a comparison to their prior visits.

Member Axe stated that she was accompanied by Manager Jones during her inspection of the fourth floor. Member Axe expressed that the condition of the units overall appeared similar to her observations in prior years, adding that there were a few units in very bad condition that had also been in a similar condition during her prior inspections. She remarked that the lack of improvement in these units was discouraging and concluded that if inspections were not conducted on a regular basis, she feared that some situations could grow out of control.

Member Harrell shared that she had inspected the first floor with the assistance of Manager Jones and Matt from Maintenance. The first floor includes several common areas and a kitchen, all of which Member Harrell felt needed thorough cleaning.

Ms. Conrad concurred and stated that since the time of Member Harrell's visit to the SRO all common areas had been thoroughly cleaned. She added that all appliances and equipment in the kitchen had been moved to allow for cleaning beneath and behind each item.

Member Harrell continued by re-affirming Member Axe's notion that inspections conducted at regular intervals will provide deterrence for housekeeping issues to develop into bigger problems. She related that she had rated several first floor units as "poor" in condition and inquired whether all units are fully furnished at the time they are rented.

Ms. Conrad acknowledged that some individual housekeeping issues continue to require staff attention. She explained that all units are furnished at the time they are rented, with an allowance for supplemental items to be brought in by the individual residents. Ms. Conrad assured the Committee that since her inception no resident has been allowed to replace any of the furniture provided in the unit.

Member Axe suggested that some residents have no other location in which to store their belongings. Thus, their units appear exceptionally cluttered. Asst. Manager Miller concurred.

Member Andresen summarized his inspection of the third floor by stating that what he had seen appeared to be in better condition overall than in prior years. He remarked that although many units were cluttered with belongings, they were generally clean.

Chairman McGarvey wondered if the difference in inspections varied by floor because of Member perception or truly because each floor did vary in condition. Ms. Conrad doubted that there was inconsistency among floors and related that individual units on each floor continued to require attention from Management Staff. She explained that on-site staff conducts monthly inspections.

Chairman McGarvey stated that his inspection had been conducted with Manager Jones and Asst. Manager Miller. He commented that he was very impressed with how thorough the inspection had been and speculated that perhaps more issues were being raised during these inspections simply because of the amount of attention be devoted to detail. Chairman McGarvey stated that although he was generally disappointed by what he observed during the inspection, he felt confident that the new management team would be able to make improvements happen rapidly.

Assistant Manager Miller told the Committee that many residents are seriously handicapped and unable to help themselves or to clean their units. He stated that management staff is actively pursuing this challenge by asking the individuals if they would allow requests for assistance to be made in their behalf. In cases where the residents agree, various social services and adult services organizations are contacted to arrange for nursing, housekeeping and in some circumstances meal delivery. Manager Jones added an observation that these residents seem grateful and appreciative of the help.

Chairman McGarvey re-iterated that he has utmost confidence in the ability of the current management and asked for any additional comment on these topics. None was offered.

2. Update on Heater- A/C Units

Ms. Morad opened discussion by noting that the City's Building Department had not received information regarding work that should have been progressing with the repair and replacement of Heater-A/C units. She requested input from Ms. Conrad, who responded that it was her understanding that work was completed on ten Heater-A/C units. However, the contractor that had completed that work was no longer on site. She added that the contractor whom she had been told would be handling the remaining units has failed to make any additional progress.

Ms. Morad then provided the Committee with a summary of the actions taken to date communicating with the building owner about resolving this issue in a timely manner. She advised the Committee that the next available option will be for the City to obtain a contractor that will take care of the repairs and installations.

A MOTION was made by Member Andresen to direct Staff to proceed with the legal course of action available to restore working Heater-A/C units to the building in an expedient manner. SECONDED by Member Johnson and CARRIED unanimously.

3. Emergency ResponsesChairman McGarvey explained to Management Staff that emergency response statistics are regularly collected and although the current level of responses is within a reasonable range, he requested that if they have additional concerns that are not be reflected by the data collected they should alert the Committee. Manager Jones acknowledged the request and added that he was not aware of any additional matters.

D. Frequency Of Meetings

Chairman McGarvey voiced concern regarding the on-going repair and installation of Heater-A/C units and suggested that the Committee should consider meeting monthly due to the increased importance of remaining involved in the resolution of this matter.

Member Andresen suggested that monthly meetings could be held through May, at which time the schedule would be re-assessed.

A MOTION was made by Member Harrell to call a special meeting of the Committee for Thursday, March 9, 2006 and continue monthly meetings through May, 2006 at which time the frequency of meetings for the remainder of the year will be determined. Member Andresen SECONDED the MOTION and it was CARRIED unanimously.

E. Next Meeting Date

The next meeting will be on Thursday, March 9, 2006 at 4:00 PM.

F. Public Comments

No public comment.

Chairman McGarvey stated that the he felt some of the poor conditions he noted during his inspection could be attributed to a lapse in on-site staffing. He reiterated his confidence in the new Management Staff and thanked them for their efforts.

Member Harrell questioned how much authority the Management Staff actually has toward effecting changes in the personal housekeeping habits of residents in their individual units.

Manager Jones stated that he works with individuals regarding improvements that are needed and takes progressive action such as verbal and written warnings in order to obtain desired results.

Member Axe acknowledged that these types of actions are necessary in order to prevent housekeeping issues from growing into hazards that may impede emergency access and/or develop pest problems in neighboring units.

Chairman McGarvey remarked that some of the issues he had observed were related to normal wear and tear of the building, particularly with a frequent turnover in residents.

Ms. Morad reminded the Committee that their inspection visits took place during the first week the new Management Staff was on duty at the SRO, following a lapse in having had Management or Maintenance personnel on-site.

Chairman McGarvey recalled that in the Minutes of the SRO meeting held in October, the Assistant Manager at that time had stated that the process of screening applicants to fill a vacancy required approximately five weeks.

Ms. Conrad strongly disagreed with that estimate and reviewed the steps she and her staff currently follow in order to review applicants, collect data and check third party information, which takes a number of days. She stated that at one point there had been 21 vacancies, but only eight remain vacant.

Member Axe inquired regarding the status of the contract between Solari Enterprises and the building management. Ms. Conrad stated that a two year contract had been renewed approximately six months ago, that includes a buy-out option in the event that the owner chooses to work with a new property management company.

With no further business Member Axe MOVED to adjourn the meeting, the MOTION was SECONDED by Member Johnson and CARRIED unanimously.

Meeting Adjourned: Chairman McGarvey adjourned the meeting at 5:00PM.

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