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Posted on: July 31, 2020

[ARCHIVED] City Manager Updates
July 31, 2020

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UPCOMING

COVID-19 RESPONSE UPDATE

City staff continues to monitor and respond to the pandemic by participating in regular briefings and conference calls with partner agencies and issuing alerts and notifications regarding changes to the situation. The County recently launched a new online dashboard to track cases, testing, deaths and hospitalizations. Key updates as of July 30, 2020 include the following:

  • 73 confirmed cases and 2 deaths in the City of Malibu
  • 185,872 confirmed cases and 4,552 deaths in LA County
  • 2,022 hospitalizations in LA County
  • 9.2% testing positivity rate

 The City’s Emergency Operations Center has been activated since March 12 to manage the City’s response. Current operational objectives include: 

  • Monitor news for changes to regulations that impact City residents and businesses
  • Post updates on all social media platforms on an as-needed basis
  • Identify City rules and regulations that need adjustment due to the pandemic
  • Respond to community concerns regarding compliance with State and County Public Health Orders
  • Maintain field operations per health guidelines and ramp up virtual operation capabilities

In addition, the City continues to provide nearly all regular City services and all staff are working. To support the health and safety of staff and visitors to City Hall, a COVID-19 Exposure Control Plan has been developed, staff has received training on the plan, physical safe guards have been put into place and appropriate PPE has been provided. In addition, visitors are allowed in City Hall by appointment only.

To address the risk posed to people experiencing homelessness, the City recently received a $5,000 grant through the Las Virgenes-Malibu Council of Governments (COG) to create hygiene kits that include items such as face coverings and hand sanitizer to help slow the spread of COVID-19 in the homeless community. The Las Virgenes-Malibu COG homeless outreach coordinator is distributing them to individuals in the region.

TEMPORARY RESTAURANT RECOVERY PROGRAM

On June 8, the City Council approved a Temporary Restaurant Recovery Program in order to help local restaurants recover from the impacts of the pandemic. The ordinance allows local restaurants to get a permit to temporarily expand their seating areas to adjacent common areas or sidewalks with physical distancing and other public health protocols in place to slow the spread of coronavirus. Restaurants must obtain a permit before expanding seating. For more information, staff contact and applications are available on the City’s Restaurant Recovery Program Page.

MALIBU REBUILDS STATISTICS

Since the Woolsey Fire, the Planning Department has approved over 552 applications including 71 since the pandemic began. Based on those approvals, Building Safety has issued 120 permits for single-family dwellings and issued 12 permits for a 12-unit multi-family apartment complex. Six single-family homes have been completed, and several more are close to completion. Get all the up to date rebuild statistics on the City’s Rebuild Statistics Page.

MALIBU REBUILDS – REBUILD CONSULTATIONS

The Fire Rebuild team is available for complimentary one-on-one consultations about any fire rebuild project. Contact Aakash Shah at AShah@malibucity.org to set an appointment for a phone or online meeting. If needed, an in-person meeting may also be scheduled. For ideas about how to get started with your project, visit the City’s Rebuild Page, where you can view rebuild options and find all related forms and handouts.

MALIBU REBUILDS - FEE WAIVER DEADLINES

On June 22, City Council extended the fee waiver deadlines to give eligible home-owners more time to submit their rebuild projects and receive fee waivers. Fee waiver applications must be received by December 30, 2020, all required Planning Department applications for the project must be deemed complete by December 30, 2020, and all required building permits must be pulled by June 30, 2021. Council also clarified that all fees associated with post-approval revisions to the project’s Planning Department approval or building permit issuance will not be waived and will be charged in accordance the City’s Adopted Fee Schedule. See the FAQs for more information.

MALIBU REBUILDS - DEADLINES FOR NON-CONFORMING STRUCTURES

To rebuild non-conforming homes and structures without having to bring the structure into compliance or seek variances, property owners must apply with the Planning Department by November 8, 2020. Extensions may be requested for extraordinary circumstances and will be considered by the Planning Commission. Please contact the Fire Rebuild Team at AShah@malibucity.org or call 310-456-2489, ext. 385 to discuss any questions or concerns you may have.

PLANNING DEPARTMENT ONLINE SERVICES

The Planning Department continues to provide all services online, by phone or by appointment. All planning staff are working remotely and at City Hall, and can be reached by regular phone and email. For a complete list of planning services, visit the City’s Planning web page.

NEW BUILDING SAFETY ONLINE PERMITTING SERVICES

Over the counter permits (building, mechanical, electrical, spa/pool, and plumbing) can now be submitted through the City’s new Online Building Permit Request Portal. To help facilitate Building Safety reviews, Building Safety has transitioned to electronic plan check submittals, permits, and invoices. Visit the City’s Building and Safety Page to find out how to start an electronic plan check submittal and permit request or email mbuilding@malibucity.org for more information.

NOVEMBER 3, 2020 GENERAL MUNICIPAL ELECTION

The nomination period for the November 3, 2020 General Municipal Election opened on Monday, July 13 and will close on Friday, August 7, or Wednesday August 12 if the incumbent does not file. You can find more information on the elections web page. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, an appointment must be made with the City Clerk to be issued or file nomination papers. To make an appointment, please email hglaser@malibucity.org or call 424-395-6431.

There will be a limited number of Vote Centers available for the November 3, 2020 election. Register to vote by October 19, 2020, to automatically be sent a Vote by Mail ballot for the November 3, 2020 election. Visit the County elections web page  to register or check your current registration.

Fire Season preparedness

The City’s Public Safety staff are in full stride preparing for the upcoming fire season. Although fires can happen any time during the year, the most damaging fires occur in the fall and early winter when Santa Ana winds are blowing, and fuel moistures are low. City staff will be participating in a virtual exercise with regional response partners on Thursday, August 6 to begin coordinating communication and response actions. Following this, City staff will participate in virtual Emergency Operations Center exercises to practice new procedures based on the COVID-19 pandemic. Community preparedness events are being planned in September as part of National Preparedness Month. Events will include a series of webinars and community meetings using a virtual meeting platform. In addition, staff recently developed a weed whacker fire safety flyer that is available to community groups to distribute and/or post on community bulletin boards. The flyer can be found on the City’s Wildfire and Fire Safety Page.

Sign up for alerts and disaster notifications

If you are not already signed up to receive alerts and disaster notifications, now is the time to get that done. Make sure all members of your family, business, or organization are signed up for emergency, weather and traffic alerts by text and email from the City. To sign up, visit .MalibuCity.org/news scroll down to Alert Center. When there is an imminent threat to any part of our community, the City issues disaster notifications to the specific area that is being threatened. To sign up for the City’s Disaster Notification system, visit the Disaster Notifications sign up portal. If the threat is widespread, the City can issue a Wireless Emergency Alert (WEA) which goes to all cell phones within the City. You do not need to be signed up for a WEA. For more information about all of the City’s different types of alerts, go to the City’s Alerts and Emergency Notification Page.

obtain a dolphin decal for resident only road closures

Malibu’s Dolphin Decal vehicle identification program was established to assist emergency personnel in identifying residents and other individuals who need to access their homes and businesses during some types of emergencies. In the event of a Resident Only road closure, the Dolphin Decal may expedite passage into the restricted area. When approaching a roadblock, all motorists will be checked for proof of residency or business in the Malibu area or to ensure they have a Dolphin Decal on their vehicle. This decal is used to assist in identification only and gives no special rights or privileges to the holder. Decals are non-transferable and non-refundable. There is no expiration date on the decals.

To obtain a Dolphin Decal, complete the application form available on the City’s website. Mail the completed form with a copy of a utility bill, driver’s license, or other proof of residency along with a check for $5 to: City of Malibu, 23825 Stuart Ranch Road, Malibu, CA 90265.

For more information, go to the City’s Dolphin Decal Program Page or call City Hall at 310-456-2489.

EMERGENCY SURVIVAL GUIDE

The Malibu Emergency Survival Guide is now available. The Guide is based on the Los Angeles County Survival Guide but customized for Malibu. This comprehensive booklet includes information about creating an emergency plan, emergency food and supplies, what to do when disaster strikes, basic first aid, important phone numbers and hazards specific to Malibu. The City encourages neighborhood and community groups to make an appointment to pick up the booklets in bulk to distribute in your neighborhood. To make an appointment to pick up the guide for your neighborhood/community group, contact Sarah Kaplan, Public Safety Specialist, at skaplan@malibucity.org or 310-456-2489, ext. 368.

EMERGENCY OUTDOOR SIREN SOUND STUDY RESULTS

In December 2019, the City contracted with Mission Critical Partners to perform a sound study for a system of outdoor emergency warning sirens in Malibu to determine quantity and location of sirens for effective coverage. The final report was completed in June and includes three options for consideration, estimated equipment costs for each and sound coverage maps illustrating the results during normal conditions as well as high wind events. In addition to the City’s topography, two factors that have a big impact on siren sound coverage are wind and home insulation. Sound coverage is dramatically reduced when people are inside their homes and winds are blowing at 40 mph or more. The full results will be presented to the Public Safety Commission on August 5 at 5:00 PM during the virtual Commission Meeting. The agenda for the August 5 Public Safety Commission is available on the City’s website.

SHORT-TERM RENTALS – ZTA AND LCP AMENDMENT

The Planning Commission held a special virtual meeting on Wednesday, July 29, 2020 and made recommendations to the City Council regarding a Zoning Text Amendment and Local Coastal Program Amendment that was based on Council’s December 3, 2019 direction to closely follow the home-sharing ordinance implemented by the City of Santa Monica, including requiring an onsite host during the rental. The City Council will consider the draft amendments and the Planning Commission’s resolution with its recommendations in September. All background staff reports and actions on short-term rentals can be found on City’s STR web page. For complaints or concerns regarding short-term rentals, call the STR Code Enforcement hotline at 310-456-2489, ext. 308 or email STR@malibucity.org. For after-hours complaints, call the City’s after-hours hotline at 310-456-2489, ext. 311, which is monitored by an operator, or call the Malibu Lost Hills Sheriff’s Station at 310-456-6652.

SHORT-TERM RENTALS – ZTA No. 17-002 ORDINANCE

On Monday, June 22, City Council directed staff to bring back the “interim” ordinance presented to the City Council on December 3, 2019 establishing provisions to regulate the short-term rental of properties in the City. This ordinance would be superseded by the regulations discussed above if approved by Council and certified by the California Coastal Commission. A Public Hearing will be held by the City Council on Monday, August 10, to consider this ordinance. The agenda report and draft ordinance are published here. For more information, visit the Short-Term Rentals web page.

TRANCAS CREEK BRIDGE REPLACEMENT 

Caltrans is proposing to replace the existing 96-year-old, 85 foot wide, 90 foot long concrete bridge, built to span Trancas Creek on Pacific Coast Highway. The new concrete bridge will be 105 feet wide by 240 feet long. It will provide two 12-foot traffic lanes, a bike lane, and 10-foot shoulders in each direction. The northbound and southbound traffic will be separated by a six-foot striped median. The project is estimated to cost approximately $12.5 million. Construction is expected to begin in February 2021 and be completed in March 2023. The project requires a Coastal Development Permit to be issued by the City as well as adoption of the CEQA environmental document. On July 31, the Malibu Environmental Review Board reviewed the project and provided recommendations to the Planning Director. On September 8, the Planning Commission will hold a virtual public hearing to consider the project. The staff report will be available online prior to the meeting. To receive an e-notification regarding the availability of the agenda and report, sign up at malibucity.org/news and subscribe to agenda center/Planning Commission. For more information, please visit the project web Page.

Along with this Caltrans’ project, the City will be constructing a new dedicated westbound right turn lane a Pacific Coast Highway and Trancas Canyon Road. The proposed right turn lane will be approximately 430 feet and will accommodate right turns onto Trancas Canyon Road as well as traffic entering into the Trancas Market shopping center. The project will be funded by Measure R Highway Operational improvements.

Caltrans and City of Malibu hosted a public information meeting on July 15, 2020.  A copy of the presentation can be found on the Project web page.

PARKING MANAGEMENT PLAN – CORRAL BEACH AND ZUMA BEACH AREAS

Staff is preparing an update to Ordinance 460 to implement parking restrictions in the Corral Beach and Zuma Beach areas. A public hearing is scheduled for the August 24 City Council Meeting. A Coastal Development Permit would need to be processed prior to sign installation in these locations. To receive an e-notification regarding the availability of the agenda and report, visit on the City e-notifications web page e-notifications web page  at and subscribe to Agenda Center/City Council.

COASTAL COMMISSION HEARINGS

On Wednesday, August 12, the California Coastal Commission will hold virtual hearings on two Malibu items. The staff reports are available on the Coastal Commission website.

  • Fire-Resistant Landscape Amendment - In March 2020, City Council adopted Ordinance No. 461 which amended the Malibu Municipal Code and the Local Coastal Program to foster more fire-resistant landscapes. Unless the Commission objects to the Executive Director’s determination, the minor amendment will take effect automatically upon reporting to the Commission.
  • Appeal Hearing – On June 8, 2020, the City Council approved a Coastal Development Permit for a project located at 21490 Paseo Portola, which was appealed to the Coastal Commission.

PROHIBITION OF PESTICIDES AND RODENTICIDES – LOCAL COASTAL PROGRAM AMENDMENT

On June 19, the California Coastal Commission (CCC) deemed the City’s Local Coastal Program amendment complete and will be proposing modifications to the City’s proposed amendment. A CCC hearing date has not been scheduled yet. Until the amendment is certified, a condition of approval regarding the prohibition will be added to coastal development permits. For more information, visit the Project web page.

Homeless Count Results

On January 22, 2020, more than two dozen volunteers, including community members, Commissioners, Public Safety staff, as well as Sheriff’s and State Parks personnel, conducted the annual Point in Time Homeless Count in Malibu. During the count, participants tally the number of people they see living on the street and the number of dwellings they see that appear to have people living in them. To determine the estimated number of people in each type of dwelling, staff from the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority (LAHSA) conduct interviews with homeless individuals. The 2020 Homeless Count results are posted on the LAHSA website. Here is a breakdown of the Malibu Homeless Count:

Persons on the street

58

Persons in cars

54

Persons in vans

36

Persons in RVs/campers

42

Persons in tents

27

Persons in makeshift shelters

22

Total Homeless Count

239

The federally mandated count provides data that helps stakeholders understand the geographic and demographic diversity of homelessness so that the types of services and housing provided are responsive to the needs in the community. The data from the Homeless Count is also important for tracking and measuring progress and adjusting programs and policies, including the implementation of the City Malibu’s Homelessness Strategic Plan. For more information, contact Public Safety Manager Susan Duenas at sduenas@malibucity.org or 310-456-2489, ext. 313.

PASSPORT SERVICES

In order to keep City staff and the community safe during the COVID-19 pandemic, the City is not accepting passport appointments at this time. The U.S. Department of State has a phased plan for reopening services and, as of Monday, July 27, a total of 10 passport agencies and centers are in phase one, and six agencies and centers are in phase two of its three-phase reopening plan. Appointments at passport agencies and centers are limited to customers who must travel internationally in the next 72 hours due to a life-or-death emergency. Please visit the U.S. State Department website to view the Department reopening plan and current international travel advisories.

VIRTUAL ENVIRONMENTAL CENTER

The Environmental Sustainability Department’s Virtual Environmental Center allows residents to enjoy virtual activities from home and learn about the City’s environmental projects. Virtual activities include Smart Gardening webinars (July-September), California Friendly Landscaping and Turf Removal webinars (July -October), and recycling tips.

LOCKING BIN LID ORDINANCE

To prevent the use of rodenticides, City Council amended Malibu Municipal Code, Chapter 8.32 Solid Waste and Recyclable Materials to require all commercial solid waste bins (one to six cubic yards in size) to be kept closed and locked at all times (24 hours/7 days a week). Commercial businesses should arrange for locking lid service by calling their waste hauler, Universal Waste Systems at 800-631-7016 or Waste Management at 805 955-4305.

SELF-REGENERATING WATER SOFTENER BAN 

The City has adopted a ban on the use of salt-based regenerative water softeners for properties connected to the Civic Center Wastewater Treatment Facility to reduce the salts in the groundwater. Installation of new salt and potassium chloride-based self –regenerating water softeners existing self-regenerating water softeners at properties connected to the Civic Center Wastewater Treatment Facility must be removed by October 28, 2020.

RECYCLE RIGHT IN MALIBU

To reduce contamination in the recycling stream, residents are reminded to skip bagging their recyclables and empty recyclables loose into the recycling cart. Many materials that end up in the recycling cart contaminate the load and damage equipment at recycling facilities. Common non-recyclables include: plastic bags, shipping plastic bubbles and packing peanuts, polystyrene foam, napkins and paper towels, used paper plates and cups, and PPE (personal protection equipment). Let’s all Recycle Right in Malibu. To learn more recycling tips, check out the Virtual Environmental Center.

VIRTUAL STUDENT ART EXHIBITIONS 

The City launched two virtual student art exhibitions, Art Voyagers and Superheroes, on Friday, July 31. Art Voyagers features digital media designs and photography by the Malibu High School graduating class of 2020. Superheroes showcases Our Lady of Malibu School student artwork, inspired by each student’s creative version of a superhero who contributes to making the world a better place. Both virtual art exhibitions are available for viewing through September 1.

Malibu bluffs park and skate park closed

Due to current COVID-19 conditions, and to protect the health and safety of visitors and City staff, Malibu Bluffs Park and the Skate Park are temporarily closed. Online reservations for the Skate Park have been suspended during this closure. Please visit the Community Services Department Web Page for updates regarding the reopening of Malibu Bluffs Park and the Skate Park, as they become available.

Community Pool

The Community Pool will be closed on Saturday, August 1, due to electrical repair work at Malibu High School. The pool will resume regular hours on Sunday, August 2, with limited programming and Covid-19 safety guidelines. Swimmers may view available dates/times or register for the SeaWolves Swim Program, Masters Swim, and Lap Swim online. Please note: Lap Swim is available by reservation only through our online reservation system due to limited pool space. Walk-ups are currently not allowed.

BIDS AND REQUESTS FOR PROPOSALS (RFPS) 

The City currently has the following work out for public bid:

  • Malibu Bluffs Park Workout Station Project – Closes August 13
  • Storm Drain Trash Screens Installation Project – Closes August 6
  • Request for Proposals for City Treasurer – Closes August 6

To see all open bids or to sign up to receive notifications when bids are posted, visit the Bid page.

Guardrail Replacement Project

The Guardrail Replacement Project consists of replacement of the guardrails damaged from the Woolsey Fire. Guardrail replacement work is taking place at the following locations:

  • Encinal Canyon (between Avenida Del Mar and Avenida De La Encinal)
  • Birdview Avenue (between Westward Beach Road and Bluewater Road)
  • Wildlife Road (between Zumirez Drive and Selfridge Street)
  • Latigo Canyon (between PCH and Ocean View Drive)
  • Corral Canyon (PCH and Seabreeze Drive)

The County of Los Angeles anticipates that the work will be completed in early August 2020.

Point Dume Speed Humps

On July 13, 2020, the Malibu City Council directed staff to install speed humps on Dume Drive and Fernhill Road at the recommendation of the Public Safety Commission. The City of Malibu will be installing new speed humps on Dume Drive between Heathercliff Road and Cliffside Drive and on Fernhill Drive between Grayfox Street and Cliffside Drive. Staff has been working to notify residents of the Point Dume neighborhood about this project.  The installation of the speed humps is tentatively scheduled for August 12-17 with additional traffic striping one week later. There will be temporary traffic lane closures during the installation of the speed humps. One travel lane will be open at all times.

Annual Street Maintenance Project

This project consists of pavement repairs, crack sealing, Type II Slurry Seal, Asphalt Rubber Hot Mix overlay and new thermoplastic striping. The project limits include the Carbon Mesa, Malibu Knolls and Malibu Country Estates neighborhoods. Weather permitting, the project is expected to be completed in August 2020. The work will be conducted Monday through Friday, 7:00 AM to 4:00 PM. Alternating lane closures and partial street closures will be implemented during construction operations. Traffic control measures will include temporary signage, cones, flaggers and pilot cars. To accommodate the work, there will be a temporary loss of street parking and a temporary loss of driveway access. To date the contractor has completed all pavement repairs, crack seal, and Asphalt Rubber Hot Mix (ARHM) overlay and the slurry seal work. The contractor will be completing the traffic striping work by August 3, 2020.

FEMA Preliminary Flood Maps Appeal

The City is in the process of appealing the revised FEMA Preliminary Flood Maps. These revised maps change the flood zone and flood depth along the City’s coastline. The proposed changes could have an impact to all existing properties and any new development along the beach. Since December 2019, the City’s consultant (Moffat & Nichol) conducted several conference calls with FEMA regarding the City’s proposed methodology to determine the base flood elevations along the coastline. They also performed a new land survey and then re-calculated the depth of flooding along the coastline. The majority of the sections analyzed showed a lower base flood elevation. The City’s consultant submitted the revised calculations to FEMA for their review. The City is expecting FEMA’s review process to take until November 2020. More information can be obtained on the City’s Floodplain Management Page.

Storm Drain Trash Screens

This project proposes to install new trash screen protection devices on storm drain inlets to help eliminate trash, leaves, and other debris from entering the storm drain system. This project is currently out to bid with bids due on August 6, 2020. To view the construction bid documents, go to the City’s Bid Page.

Bluffs Park Workout Station

This project proposes to install a new work out station at Bluffs Park. This project is currently out to bid with bids due on August 13, 2020. To view the construction bid documents, go to the City’s Bid Page.

ONE CALL TO CITY HALL 310-456-CITY, EXT. 311 

One Call to City Hall is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week for community members to report issues or contact City staff during non-business hours. To reach One Call to City Hall services, dial 310-456-CITY, ext. 311. For life-threatening emergencies, please call 911.

HOW TO REACH THE CITY DURING EMERGENCIES

The City encourages all community residents to sign up for emergency, traffic, weather and utility alerts through the website e-notification system (scroll down to "Alert Center"). You can also get emergency information during a disaster by phone by calling the City’s Hotline at 310-456-9982. During an emergency situation, the Hotline is updated regularly with current information.



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