The Skinny: Hayward City Council Preview, Jan. 14, 2014

Hayward City Council Preview
777 B Street
Tuesday, Jan. 14, 7 p.m.
[FULL AGENDA HERE]
Twitter hashtag: #haymtg.
Twitter handles: Francisco Zermeno @FranciscZermeno; Mark Salinas @hwdcouncilman; Al Mendall @AlMendall

>>> REASON TO FILL OUT A SPEAKER’S CARD
MORATORIUM ON SMOKE SHOPS City staff recommends issuing a 45-day moratorium through Feb. 28 on the establishment of new tobacco and e-cigarette retailers, along with cigarette lounges, vapor bars and hookah bars following what a staff report describes as a noticeable uptick in applications for each type of business in Hayward. There is also a gray area within Hayward’s existing ordinances over zoning for these types of tobacco-specific businesses (Item 7).

WHAT IT MEANS The city says it needs more time to sort through the proliferation of businesses showing interest in bringing even more cigarette smokers and those craving nicotine in other forms their fix. There’s also the health factor of these businesses promoting the unhealthy vice of smoking to Hayward, already one of the least affluent and unhealthy communities in the East Bay. Ostensibly this moratorium is as much about stopping Hayward children from gaining access to cigarettes and other products like some fruity flavored products currently on the market targeting young customers. If the short-term 45-day moratorium is approved Tuesday, it could be renewed as early as Feb. 18 for another 10 months and 15 days, if staff still requires additional time.

>>> OTHER AGENDA HIGHLIGHTS
BE AWARE A proposal for $1.35 million to lease a new fire engine, eight police patrol cars and four motorcycles will come before the council Tuesday (Item 4). New Hayward firefighters will soon pay up to 15 percent toward the cost of their pensions, under a new agreement (Item 5).

>>> FOR THEIR EYES ONLY
NEGOTIATIONS The council will again meet with labor negotiators in closed session. City employees have been without a contract since last February. At the last council meeting, representatives for SEIU 1021 presented the council a petition of over 5,000 Hayward residents urging them to negotiate a new contract with the union.

>>> LAST TIME OUT
Dec. 17, the council finalized an ordinance prohibiting simulated gambling devices in Hayward. Testimony from city staff confirmed a housing developer had illegally cut down a number of trees in the area without a permit. Discussions over the possibility of a tax measure in 2014 for new facilities, primarily a new library and/or police station. Rep. Eric Swalwell addressed the council.

NOW YOU CAN’T SAY YOU DIDN’T KNOW