2018 Landscape & Lighting Assessment

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 2018 Landscape & Lighting Balloting Results

Landing Page Photo 1 (DSC03511 Zone 1)

The Hercules Landscape and Lighting Districts (LLADs) provide for the maintenance of our City’s street lights, parks, roadway landscaping and open space, and are funded through annual assessments that are collected specifically for your neighborhood. 

In May, the City of Hercules proposed an assessment increase in Zones 1 (Hercules by the Bay), 3 & 4 (Birds & Gems), 6 (Village Parkway), 7 (Refugio Heights) & 9 (Birds & Country Run), which have been temporarily borrowing from other zones to pay for operational costs because assessments in those zones do not generate sufficient revenue to cover costs. The proposed assessment increases would have eliminated neighborhood specific deficits and covered the increased costs of operation. Ballots were mailed to the targeted zones on May 9th, and a Facebook Live video chat about the proposed assessment increase and public hearing were held in May and June. 

Ballots were collected and tabulated by June 27th, and at their July 10th meeting, the Hercules City Council certified the results of the Landscape and Lighting District Assessment initiative, which can be found here: 2018 Landscape & Lighting Proposition 218 Results  (PDF)

Ballot results showed that there was an increase in support for new assessments relative to a year ago; however only property owners in Zone 9 achieved the 50% threshold required to support new assessment rates. Zones 1, 3, 4, 6 & 7 fell short of approving new assessment rates, leading to the strong possibility of LLAD service cutbacks in those zones. 

This fall, the City will be replacing aging wood street lights on major roads using funds from the gas tax. The use of these funds represent a general contribution to the effort to replace the lights and reduces costs being passed through to all of the assessment districts in the City. Damaged or dilapidated street lights in the zones where the assessment didn’t pass will not be replaced. Should a street light fall or become a public hazard, the City will remove the light, but it will not be replaced. 

Over the next few months, the City will review service levels in each district and take action to create fiscally sustainable districts that will continue to keep our neighborhoods clean and safe.

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Hercules’ Landscape & Lighting Assessment Districts (LLAD) play an important role in our community, and provide for the maintenance of our City’s street lights, parks, roadway landscaping, and open spaces. Because of this, the sustainability of our LLAD is critical in helping keep our neighborhoods attractive and safe.

Landscape and lighting assessments are intended to provide a fair way to allocate street lighting and landscaping expenses to the properties that benefit from them. Unfortunately, your neighborhood doesn’t collect enough to keep these services going, and is at risk of losing many of these services if the assessment is not increased.

This year, the City of Hercules is issuing a series of LLAD assessment increase ballots to property owners in: 

Citywide Zone Map - 2017Click here to view a complete map of Hercules LLAD

Click here to view the Engineer's Report presented to the City Council 

Each of these neighborhoods, excluding the Heights, had significant funding deficits. Assessments collected from property owners did not provide enough to pay for the ongoing maintenance of their street lights and landscaping, including a fair share of major road costs. 

LLAD 2018 Rate Increases
On May 16, 2018, the City of Hercules went live on Facebook to discuss the proposed landscape and lighting assessment increase with the community.  View a copy of the video here.

 

On May 22, 2018, Public Works Director Mike Roberts updated City Council with a presentation on the Demonstration Pilot Streetlight Replacement Project.  Click here to view the presentation slides.

If passed, the increased assessments will stay within your neighborhood, stays out of  Sacramento, and protect property values. If the ballot does not pass, many of these services will be significantly reduced or completely halted.
 
On May 9, 2018, ballots were mailed to property owners in each of these neighborhoods. 

Please read through the ballot carefully and submit your vote. They need to be received by 5 p.m. on June 26, 2018. Completed ballots can be mailed to the City of Hercules, Attn: City Clerk, 111 Civic Drive, Hercules, CA 94547. Completed ballots can also be hand delivered to the City Clerk at Hercules City Hall (111 Civic Drive).                    

For questions about landscape, street lighting, or park maintenance, please call the City’s Public Works Director, Mike Roberts, at (510) 799-8241. For questions about the assessments, voting procedures or process, please call Engineering Consultant, Ed Espinoza at (800) 441-8280.

What services are provided by LLADs? 

Services are categorized broadly into two types: street lighting and landscaping. Adequately lit streets maintain safe neighborhoods and improve the appearance of property frontage at night. Street lighting also keeps our streets safe for drivers and pedestrians alike. At night or in bad weather, drivers and pedestrians can better see one another, traffic signs, and bicyclists. 

The landscaping services provide for healthy and well maintained neighborhood and city parks, recreation facilities, open space and landscaping improvements. Routine landscape maintenance along city public roadways, parks, and open spaces such as mowing, weed abatement, trash and debris pick-up keep our neighborhoods properly maintained while increasing safety and plant health during years of drought. Landscaping is pruned at medians and other areas so drivers have good sight vision at city intersections. These efforts also include graffiti removal from public property. 

In addition to neighborhood-specific assessments, all residential property owners pay into the Zone 10 benefit at a rate of $120.44 a month for single-family homes and $84.31 for condominiums and townhomes. Zone 10 is a city-wide assessment that pays for the maintenance and care of the City's parks, tennis courts, swim center, senior and civic centers, and wetland preservation areas.

Zone 1 - DSC03514

Hercules by the Bay (Zone 1)

The Hercules by the Bay benefit zone has more than $30,500 in deficits that are at risk of halting neighborhood services. Additionally, $25,900 is needed each year, for 10 years, to pay for the replacement of deteriorating wooden street lights. If approved, the assessment will increase by $5.65 a month for most of the zone's single-family homes, and $4.24 a month for condominiums and townhomes. In the Olympian Hills and Cottage Lane neighborhoods, the assessment will increase by $2.23 a month for single-family homes, and $1.67 a month for condominiums and townhomes.

This increased assessment will provide enough money to eliminate the benefit zone’s annual operating deficit, eliminate the cumulative deficit over the next 10 years, and finance the replacement of deteriorating wooden street poles with LED lighting. Other benefits funded by the assessment include:

  • Maintains and services Railroad Park.
  • Provides weed abatement services in open space areas which can help reduce the spread of fires.
  • Maintains and services neighborhood cul-de-sac landscaping areas.
  • Maintains and services neighborhood street lighting located along public roadways.
  • The deteriorated existing wooden street light poles have reached their useful life and need to be replaced. The City is proposing to replace them with cost-effective LED lighting on metal poles that will lower annual operating costs.
  • Maintains and services the landscape medians located along Hercules Avenue.
  • Maintains and services its fair share of the landscape and lighting improvements associated with the arterial/major roadways throughout the City.

Zone 1 includes the neighborhoods of Hercules by the Bay, Chelsea by the Bay, Belleterre, Olympian Hills, and Cottage Lane. 

 

The Gems / Birds (Zone 3 & 4)

The Gems / Birds benefit zone has more than $5,000 in deficits that are at risk of halting neighborhood services. Additionally, $45,000 is needed each year, for 10 years, to pay for the replacement of deteriorating wooden street lights. If approved, the assessment will increase by $5.34 a month for single-family homes, and $4.02 a month for condominiums and townhomes.

Zone 3 - DSC03496Zone 4 - DSC03500

This increased assessment will provide enough money to eliminate the benefit zone’s annual operating deficit, and finance the replacement of deteriorating wooden street poles with LED lighting. Other benefits funded by the assessment include:

  • Provides weed abatement services in open space areas which can help reduce the spread of fires.
  • Maintains and services neighborhood cul-de-sac landscaping areas.
  • Maintains and services neighborhood street lighting located along public roadways.
  • The deteriorated existing wooden street light poles have reached their useful life and need to be replaced. The City is proposing to replace them with cost-effective LED lighting on metal poles that will lower annual operating costs.
  • Maintains and services its fair share of the landscape and lighting improvements associated with the arterial/major roadways throughout the City.
 

Village Parkway (Zone 6)

Zone 6 - DSC03509

The Village Parkway benefit zone has more than $160,000 in deficits that are at risk of halting neighborhood services. Additionally, $18,000 is needed each year, for 10 years, to pay for the replacement of deteriorating wooden street lights. If approved, the assessment will increase by $6.14 a month for most of the zone's single-family homes, and $4.60 a month for condominiums and townhomes. In Westwood Duets, the assessment will increase by $13.14 a month for single-family homes, and $9.85 a month for condominiums and townhomes.

This increased assessment will provide enough money to eliminate the benefit zone’s annual operating deficit, eliminate the cumulative deficit over the next 10 years, and finance the replacement of deteriorating wooden street poles with LED lighting. Other benefits funded by the assessment include:

  • Provides weed abatement services in open space areas which can help reduce the spread of fires.
  • Maintains and services neighborhood street lighting located along public roadways.
  • The deteriorated existing wooden street light poles have reached their useful life and need to be replaced. The City is proposing to replace the wooden street light poles along Village Parkway and in the Westwood Duets with cost-effective LED lighting on metal poles that will lower annual operating costs.
  • Maintains and services the landscape medians located along Village Parkway.
  • Maintains and services its fair share of the landscape and lighting improvements associated with the arterial/major roadways throughout the City.
 

Heights (Zone 7)

Zone 7 - DSC01898The Heights benefit zone needs more than $38,000 each year, for 10 years, to pay for the replacement of deteriorating wooden street lights. If approved, the assessment will increase by $3.72 a month for single-family homes, and $2.79 a month for condominiums and townhomes. This increased assessment will provide enough money to finance the replacement of deteriorating wooden street poles with LED lighting. Other benefits funded by the assessment include:

  • Provides weed abatement services in open space areas which can help reduce the spread of fires.
  • Maintains and services neighborhood street lighting located along public roadways.
  • The deteriorated existing wooden street light poles have reached their useful life and need to be replaced. The City is proposing to replace them with cost-effective LED lighting on metal poles that will lower annual operating costs.
  • Maintains and services its fair share of the landscape and lighting improvements associated with the arterial/major roadways throughout the City.
 

Birds and Country Run (Zone 9)

Zone 9 - Street Landscaping

The Birds and Country Run benefit zone has more than $90,000 in deficits that are at risk of halting neighborhood services. If approved, the assessment will increase by $0.76 a month for single-family homes, and $0.57 a month for condominiums and townhomes.

This increased assessment will provide enough money to eliminate the zone’s cumulative deficit over the next eight years. Other benefits funded by the assessment include:

  • Provides weed abatement services in open space areas which can help reduce the spread of fires.
  • Maintains and services neighborhood street lighting located along public roadways.
  • Maintains and services its fair share of the landscape and lighting improvements associated with the arterial/major roadways throughout the City.