News

San Ramon council to consider supporting countywide 0.5% sales tax

Plus: City to recognize Unity Day 2019, consider massage therapist licensing amendment

The San Ramon City Council will be debating the merits of supporting a new 0.5% countywide sales tax during its regular meeting on Tuesday evening, that would help fund transportation projects in Contra Costa County.

A decision that is being considered by other municipalities in Contra Costa County, the "Transportation Expenditure Plan" would last for a period of 35 years starting July 1, 2020 through June 30, 2055, and have the potential to raise an estimated $3.6 billion in funding for transportation projects throughout the county.

Pending approval from local government agencies and a successful final vote by the Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors, the tax would be placed on the March 3, 2020 ballot for final consideration by voters.

“Currently, transportation needs significantly exceed projected revenues. Over the next 35 years, Contra Costa County population will continue to grow, resulting in new demands on the transportation infrastructure and additional mobility needs. The new sales tax measure is needed to keep Contra Costa County moving and to create livable and sustainable communities,” transportation division manager Lisa Bobadilla said in a staff report.

According to Bobadilla, transportation investments would be “split roughly equal between funding categories targeted at congestion relief on major commute corridors throughout Contra Costa County and funding categories intended to improve transportation in all our communities.”

Bobadilla went on to say that San Ramon is projected to receive $1,244,429 per year for maintaining local streets and roads.

The San Ramon City Council is set to discuss the new sales tax, as well as other pressing issues facing the city, during its regular meeting at 7 p.m. Tuesday, in the City Hall Council Chamber, 7000 Bollinger Canyon Road.

In other business

*After hearing a presentation by Teen Council Chair Vineela Gogineni, the council is set to recognize Oct. 23 as Unity Day, a day where participants wear orange to show support for students who have been bullied.

*The City Council is also set to review potential updates to its ordinance relating to the regulation of massage establishments and licensing in San Ramon.

In response to a complaint received by a San Ramon business owner, during Tuesday’s meeting the council will consider adding an amendment that will allow specific exemptions to the city’s massage licensing policies.

One of the key changes made to the city’s ordinance regulating massage establishments, was the new requirement that all massage therapists within the city must obtain California Massage Therapy Council (CAMTC) certification in order to work, according to Assistant City Attorney Alicia Poon.

This became an issue when in July the city received a complaint from a business owner who said one of their employees could not become CAMTC. According to Poon the employee could not become certified because the program did not recognize their out-of-country massage education, according to Poon.

Despite having relevant training and experience, under the city’s current regulations the owner would be forced to fire them because their employees could not technically get CAMTC certification.

“Although it is normally not advisable to allow an exception to the CAMTC certification requirement... it appears that this particular scenario is unique and any risk can be minimized by a narrowly crafted exception,” Poon said.

*Council members will then discuss allocating $25 million for various capital investments around the city.

According to a staff report by Administrative Services Director Eva Phelps, capital improvement projects that will be funded include citywide bicycle network improvements, the city hall reconfiguration, citywide drainage and infrastructure, the installation of street cameras, removal and installation of trees and other landscaping improvements, intelligent transportation system upgrades, renovation of the San Ramon Community Center, San Ramon Olympic Pool improvements, bicycle pedestrian overcrossing improvements, and street and road maintenance.

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Comments

21 people like this
Posted by John Smith
a resident of San Ramon
on Oct 7, 2019 at 10:25 pm

Is there no end to the corruption at our local government offices?
We already pay the highest taxes for transportation, highest gas tax that was supposed to go for roads and transportation. The block of highway lanes to charge more for toll collection, the so called hov lanes. Our garbage rates just went up significantly.
They want to build 4500 more houses in Bishop Ranch, likely to add about 15000 more students and 10000 more cars to our roads. Our schools are already overflowing with temporary classes.
Meanwhile, our city and county politicians keep raising their salaries and pad their pension plans.
They never saw a tax they didn’t like.
Time to drain the swamp !!!


17 people like this
Posted by Tom ferrera
a resident of San Ramon
on Oct 7, 2019 at 11:43 pm

Don't you think we are taxed to death
Knock it off


18 people like this
Posted by Angela
a resident of San Ramon
on Oct 8, 2019 at 12:30 am

Stop adding taxes, and use the funds already allocated. We are overtaxed on everything as it is.


11 people like this
Posted by Lynn
a resident of Blackhawk
on Oct 8, 2019 at 8:58 am

CA is already taxed to death! NO MORE TAXES! As a life long CA resident, I believe we need third party, independent audits to see where our tax money is really going. I have an idea, let’s look at cutting spending first befit layering on another tax onto resident’s back.


8 people like this
Posted by No Way
a resident of San Ramon
on Oct 8, 2019 at 12:24 pm

If I didn't have Prop 13, I'd be long gone! Letters above state my sentiment.


2 people like this
Posted by SL
a resident of San Ramon
on Oct 9, 2019 at 1:52 pm

It is in fact time to reduce CA sales tax. Due to the crazy South Dakota vs Wayfair ruling passed, now you are required to pay CA sales tax even if you order something from NY. Unless government officials happily increase their salaries and pensions, raising tax rate to collect more tax is absolutely non-sense.


2 people like this
Posted by Rick
a resident of San Ramon
on Oct 9, 2019 at 5:17 pm

Can you start with finding way to reduce cost first? We are already paying 50 cents tax out of a dollar earned. When is it going to be enough? Never?


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