Annual Part One Crime Statistics – Overall, property crimes decreased by 9.11 percent and violent crimes increased by .6 percent. This trend is consistent with law enforcement agencies across the nation, who reported similar statistics for the first six months of 2016. Annually Public Safety is required to report Part 1 crimes* to the DOJ and FBI. For calendar year 2016, DPS reported 2315 total crimes. The chart shows preliminary* numbers to be reported as Sunnyvale's crime totals for 2016, and a comparison to the previous 2015 calendar year:
*For more information, contact Records Manager Pam Healy at 408-730-7163 or visit Sunnyvale Public Safety Statistics or FBI - Uniform Crime Reporting and Preliminary Semiannual Uniform Crime Report 2016
Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Stations Installed – Four new public EV charging stations were installed and commissioned at the end of December and are available for use. These ChargePoint Level 2 charging stations were installed through the Bay Area Charge Ahead Project through a grant from the California Energy Commission. Two charging stations are located in the Civic Center area along All America Way, one in the Caltrain parking garage, and one station was added to the 200 W. Evelyn Garage (under Plaza del Sol). The stations are open to the public. The stations can be activated through a ChargePoint member card, ChargePoint mobile app, or credit card. The City Council has adopted a $1.50 per hour use fee for these public stations. For more information, contact Elaine Marshall, Environmental Programs Manager, at 408-730-7720.
Summary of Transportation and Traffic Grants Received – In the current fiscal year, the City prepared and submitted over 19 separate applications for grant funds. All of the submitted applications except one were considered on a competitive basis at the state and regional level for award of grant. The City has successfully procured $18.31 million in grant funds so far this year. An overall local match of $3.38 million will be required to leverage these grant funds. A summary of the applications along with listing of projects and grant funds received is provided below:
2016 Holiday Burglary Suppression Detail – During the holiday season there is a notable increase in home burglaries and package thefts. Since 2012, Public Safety has operated a holiday burglary suppression team to address the increase. The suppression team was in operation from Nov. 15 to Dec. 21. The team consisted of a lieutenant and four officers and detectives. The team made over 120 stops or contacts. There were 17 arrests made, which resulted in the clearance of numerous burglaries from Sacramento to Gilroy.
Additionally, the department used social media to keep citizens informed of the suppression team's operations and to provide home security tips. For more information, contact Captain Shawn Ahern, 408-730-7158
DPS-CalOES HazMat Typing – On Nov. 30, evaluators from CalOES Fire and Rescue Division, Hazardous Materials Section, conducted a recertification inspection of the DPS Hazardous Materials Emergency Response Program at Fire Station 2. As a result of that inspection, the department was recertified for another five-year period as a Type 2 HazMat Team effective immediately. The evaluators commended the department for its preparation, commenting that it was one of the best recertification efforts they had seen from the 90 different teams in the state.
Public Safety Participates in Silicon Valley Reads – Silicon Valley Reads is a community program that fosters the love of reading and learning by encouraging discussion of books that examine contemporary themes. Selected books are discussed at free events scheduled throughout the county. Celebrating the 15th anniversary of Silicon Valley Reads, the 2017 theme is and justice for all, a conversation about the impact of unconscious biases on how people are treated, especially in the legal system. On Sunday, March 12, at 2 p.m., a community discussion panel on Procedural Justice, focusing on the book Unfair by Adam Benforado, will be held at Cupertino Community Hall. The panel will include leaders from the local law enforcement community, including our own Chief Phan S. Ngo, Director of Public Safety. Barbara Marshman, editorial page editor for the San Jose Mercury News, will be the panel moderator. For more information, visit Silicon Valley Reads, or contact Chief Phan S. Ngo, 408-730-7155.
Voter Participation Increase at First Even-Year Election – Until 2013, the City of Sunnyvale held General Municipal Elections in November of odd-numbered years. In 2013, the voters approved a Charter amendment to hold its regular elections in even-numbered years. The main reason for switching to the even-year cycle was an attempt to increase voter participation.
According to the Santa Clara County Registrar of Voters, during the last three odd-year elections of 2009, 2011 and 2013, Sunnyvale's voter turnout was between 34.5 percent and 35 percent and between 17,902 and 19,032 ballots were cast. In Sunnyvale's first even-year regular election on Nov. 8, 2016, voter turnout was 84.8 percent and 51,427 ballots were cast. For more information, contact City Clerk's Office at 408-730-7483.
NOVA Hosts Regional Plan Stakeholders Meeting – On Dec. 16, NOVA hosted a regional stakeholders meeting at the Sunnyvale Community Center to provide initial input on the proposed 2017-2020 regional plan under the federal Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), on behalf of the four Workforce Development Boards that comprise the region (San Jose-based work2future, San Francisco, San Benito County and NOVA). The draft plan will be released to the public for review on Jan. 16, with the final regional plan agendized for City Council review in late spring. NOVA's local WIOA plan that is specific to the NOVA workforce area will be agendized for City Council consideration in February.
NOVA Awarded High-Performing Board Grant – In 2013, as part of the federal Workforce Investment Act local planning process, the NOVA Workforce Board was designated a High-Performing Board. Last month, the California Workforce Development Board announced that for Program Year 2016/17 the local workforce boards designated as High-Performing Boards would be awarded a monetary incentive grant of about $54,839. This is the first year that funding will be awarded to high-performing boards. For more information about the award, visit the Workforce Services Information Notice WSIN16-27.
NOVA Awarded RICOG Advanced Transportation Initiative Grant — The State has awarded NOVA a $250,000 Regional Industry Clusters of Opportunity (RICOG) grant to collaborate with the Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority (VTA) on an advanced transportation initiative. The public transit industry faces an impending personnel crisis with a high percentage of employees facing retirement. To address this issue, VTA has partnered with its union, ATU Local 265, Mission College and the California Labor Federation to develop a transit infrastructure and workforce through the Transit Apprenticeships for Professional Career Advancement (TAPCA) initiative, with the goal to provide apprenticeships for 100 VTA employees. NOVA will be the administrator for this grant and develop working relationships with TAPCA's stakeholders, research TAPCA's activities and determine their value in transit apprenticeships, and then seek to replicate this model at SamTrans in San Mateo County.
Lunch Program at the Senior Center Has a New Operator – The Department of Library and Community Services is pleased to announce the selection of Haute Cuisine Inc. as the new operator of the daily lunch program at the Sunnyvale Senior Center. With over nine years of experience in food service, Haute Cuisine has a strong reputation in the community for quality, professional service and is listed on the preferred caterers' list for numerous establishments including Domenico Winery and Rengstorff House. The daily lunch program will resume operations on Jan. 17. For more information, call 408-730-7360.
Spring Athletic Field Reservations Application Period Opening Soon – The first day to submit private rental applications for the athletic fields in Sunnyvale is Feb. 1. This submission window will cover the months of March through May. Applications will be considered on a first-come, first-served basis. Applicants may drop off their applications at the Indoor Sports Center (550 E. Remington Drive) between 8:30 to 8:45 a.m. to participate in a lottery. If you have questions, contact Marlon Cruz, 408-730-7721, or visit Parks.inSunnyvale.com and click on Field Rentals in the Quick Links section.
Library Wi-Fi Updated to Require Patrons to Accept Terms of Service – On Jan. 12, the Library's Wi-Fi portal was updated to enable a one-click acceptance of the wireless network acceptable use policy. The policy itself remains unchanged, but patrons who may have not otherwise been aware of the policy are now directed to review it before using the connection. Acceptance of terms is a common best practice among both library and technology industries and reinforces the Library's position, limitations, and disclaimers regarding patron responsibility for copyrighted material and cybersecurity. For more information, contact Liz Hickok.
Lockable Storage Study Issue – This study involves reviewing the on-site storage requirements for multi-family residential development project. There are several options to consider in developing the regulations for on-site storage. The City has reviewed other cities requirements and toured existing apartment projects to understand how the spaces are being used. In order to best understand how tenants use the storage spaces, the City is releasing a survey on Nextdoor for tenants of apartment complexes and condominiums to evaluate how lockable storage is currently utilized in these developments. The City will be sending the survey to several apartment complexes for electronic distribution to tenants. The Study Issue will come to the Planning Commission and City Council in late winter or early spring 2017. For more information, contact Kelly Cha, 408-730-7408.
Initial Draft of 2025 Statewide Housing Assessment Published – On Jan. 3, the California Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) released a new report: California's Housing Future: Challenges and Opportunities. This report serves as the Statewide Housing Assessment that HCD is required by State law to produce approximately every 10 years. It provides an update on California's current housing challenges, market conditions, and growth projections. The report also presents recommendations and a policy framework for addressing these challenges over the next 10 years. A public comment period on the report, with several upcoming outreach meetings and a webinar, is currently open to allow the public to review and provide feedback on the Assessment, and HCD plans to publish a final report by this summer. Details of the outreach meetings and webinar are available on the HCD website. The public comment period closes on March 4. For more information contact HCD staff.
Volunteers Needed to Help with County-wide Homeless Census and Survey – On Jan. 24 and 25, the County of Santa Clara and various partner agencies will conduct the 2017 Homeless Census to estimate the number of homeless people currently living in the county. The County is asking for local residents and others to volunteer to help with this count on those dates. Volunteers work with local guides, who are or were previously homeless, to count homeless people through visual observation in all areas of Santa Clara County. A brief training is provided to volunteers before the count. The North County count, which includes Sunnyvale, will occur on Jan. 25. The homeless census data is an important tool that is used by the federal government to determine how much funding to make available to this county and others around the country to help homeless people obtain housing, and to set federal policy related to homelessness. The City of Sunnyvale and other jurisdictions throughout the county will benefit from the most accurate census possible. Last year the County received over $20 million in federal funding for local nonprofit programs assisting homeless people, as a result of prior year census data. Interested volunteers may learn more about this effort and sign up online. For more information about this effort or to sign up, contact Connie Chu at 408-813-2419.
Field Availability During Winter Closure – As part of public comment during the Dec. 13 Council meeting, there was a concern expressed by a resident regarding field availability and unpermitted use of the fields during the winter closure.
During the months of November through February, all sports fields are closed with the exception of four fields the City alternates keeping open (depending on condition of the field) for drop-in use. During regular business hours the City enforces the closures of the sports fields, but it is more challenging on the weekends as there is limited staff available. If unauthorized use of a field is brought to the City's attention during off-hours, the City works with the Public Safety to monitor and check more frequently on the field to enforce the closure.
Overall, the City is unaware of excessive use of any one of the sports fields. We know it occurs occasionally, however it is not tracked since the reports are infrequent. Additionally, we are not aware nor have we received calls reporting closed fields being used frequently by an organized group.
California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) Data Assessment and Complete Streets Policy and Programs – The City Council recently received an email regarding the 2014 OTS injury and fatal collision rankings (OTS rankings) for cities in California, and the possibility of submitting an application to the University of Berkeley for undertaking an assessment of the City's complete street policy and programs. The City has reviewed both the OTS ranking and possible application.
For the purpose of ranking, OTS divides the cities into various groups based on their population size, and uses an empirical method which includes Daily Vehicle Miles Traveled (DMVT) and total number of collisions involving vehicles, pedestrians and bikes. The City of Sunnyvale was included in Group B with a population range between 100,000 to 250,000 (Sunnyvale at 147,376). As part of a thorough review, the City concluded that Group B included 57 cities and does not take into account factors such as the difference between geographical locations (urban or rural), separating accidents that occurred in county or state facilities within a city, and the level of bike ridership. Sunnyvale was ranked 34 (lower ranking represents higher collision rate) out of 57 cities in the Group B. However, in an effort to be comprehensive, the City also reviewed the overall OTS collision ranking of Group B reported for the previous five years (2009 to 2013) and determined that the Sunnyvale average ranking over that period was 50 out 55 (only five cities had a lower collision rate than Sunnyvale). The City also separated the cities with population of 120,000 to 160,000 and geographical locations similar to that of Sunnyvale, and found that the City of Sunnyvale had lowest reported overall collision rate of all the cities in this category.
The OTS also ranks the cities for bicycle collisions only. The City noted that the OTS method for bicycle collision ranking does not take into consideration important factors such as population and DMVT, and absent these factors, a city ranking may either be understated or overstated. It is also important to note Santa Clara County publishes bicycle collision rates factoring in population size. The latest one was published in 2015 and only three (with DMVT less than half of the Sunnyvale; Morgan Hill, Gilroy, and Milpitas) out of 15 municipalities had a lower bicycle collision rate than the City of Sunnyvale.
The City has been successful in maintaining a safe transportation environment for residents; however safety is a continuous effort that requires constant improvement. The City will not be pursuing assistance from Berkeley, but will focus its limited staff time in completing a number of efforts already underway. The City is currently preparing a Vision Zero Plan (VZP), ADA Transition Plan, and will also update existing safety plans (Bike Plan, Pedestrian Safety Plan, and Safe Routes to School Plan). The implementation of these plans, and the modernization of the City's traffic signal system that is currently underway, will prove vital in further reducing collisions throughout the city. The City also has comprehensive complete streets policies within its General Plan, which were further strengthened by a recently adopted Resolution on Complete Streets. The City also recently met with VTA to discuss the City's Complete Streets Program, and VTA staff expressed they were impressed with the City's complete streets policies, supporting programs, and recently updated design standards. They noted that the City of Sunnyvale has one of the best Complete Streets Programs in Santa Clara County.
Sunnyvale Public Library to Receive Award for Outstanding Technology and Innovation in Library Services – The Sunnyvale Silicon Valley Chamber of Commerce selected the Sunnyvale Public Library to receive its Outstanding Technology and Innovation in Library Services award. Every year, the Chamber of Commerce acknowledges elite members of the Sunnyvale community for their outstanding accomplishments in innovation, technology, and community. City and Library representatives will receive the award at the Chamber's 52nd annual community event on Saturday, Feb. 25.
Airplane-Related Issues – The City continues to track air noise activity on multiple fronts and from multiple sources that impact our residents. In Sunnyvale, the source of air noise comes from various activities from regional international airports, general aviation airports, and Moffett Federal Airfield. Ultimately, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is primarily responsible for air traffic control and our region continues to advocate for air noise mitigation.
UPCOMING MEETINGS AND EVENTS
Rudyard Kipling's Just So Stories – In conjunction with the Department of Library and Community Services, the California Theater Center (CTC) brings school groups (Grades K-5) and families upcoming performances of Rudyard Kipling's Just So Stories. All shows will take place at the Sunnyvale Theatre located at 550 E. Remington Drive. Family shows run Saturdays, Jan. 21 at 11 a.m. and Jan. 28 at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. For more show information or to purchase tickets visit CTC.
Kindergarten Readiness – Tuesday, Jan. 17, 6 to 8 p.m. at the Library, 665 W. Olive Ave. This workshop gives parents and caregivers tools to help prepare young children for the kindergarten transition. School District representatives will be available for a question and answer session after the kindergarten readiness presentation from First 5 Family Resource Center staff. Each participant will receive a copy of the First 5 Santa Clara County Parent/Teacher Handbook. Please arrange for your own child care as there will not be any provided at the workshop. Registration is required; call 408-730-7800 for more information or to register.
Master Gardeners: Growing Berries – Saturday, Jan. 21, 3 to 4 p.m. at the Library Program Room, 665 W. Olive Ave. Join Master Gardener Yeffi Vanatta and discover how to grow the best varieties of berries for our climate including soil preparation and protecting and harvesting these fruits.
Basic Tax Information Workshops – Sunday, Jan. 22, at the Library Program Room, 665 W. Olive Ave. At 1 p.m., learn the basics of sole proprietorship taxation including self-employment income, reporting on Schedule C, and Hobby Loss rules. At 3 p.m., learn the basics of rental property taxation including income and expenses on Schedule E, tax depreciation, repair expenses, and rental loss. Both workshops are presented by Wayne Schoene, CPA.
TAC's Annual Blood Drive – Saturday, Jan. 28, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Senior Center, 550 E. Remington Drive. The Sunnyvale Teen Advisory Committee (TAC) is partnering with the Red Cross to host their third annual blood drive. Last year over 70 community members donated blood to help save lives. To schedule a donation appointment, visit Red Cross Blood and use sponsor code TAC; or email TAC with the time you wish to schedule your appointment. Walk-in appointments are available the day of the event. Jake's Pizza of Sunnyvale is donating pizza for those giving blood, while pastries and juice will also be provided. For more information, contact Jesus Raygoza.
Sunnyvale Community Baby Shower – Saturday, Feb. 4, 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the Library, 665 W. Olive Ave. The City hosts this free community event with local community partners to honor new and expecting parents. The event will include baby shower games, light refreshments, prize drawings, parenting resources, information on local child care and the opportunity to meet other new parents. No registration required. For more information, call 408-730-7800.