Eureka City Council to vote on reasonable accommodation ordinance; construction projects on tap for approval

The Eureka City Council on Tuesday will vote on an ordinance that would amend the municipal code to provide a procedure for people to request reasonable accommodations for the disabled.

"What the ordinance allows people to do is request reasonable accommodations for the city's land use and zoning regulations in order to be able to provide housing for people with disabilities," Senior Planner Kristen Goetz said.

It would create a procedure for property owners or developers to request flexibility in applying the regulations, and give staff guidelines on whether the request can be granted, according to staff.

Examples of reasonable accommodations might include a request to allow a wheelchair ramp in a setback area if the zoning code didn't allow for one, Goetz said. Another example could be developers asking for a reduction in the number of required parking spots in developing housing for mentally disabled people who don't drive.

Furthermore, by approving the ordinance at this time, the city would qualify for the California Department of Housing and Community Development's streamlined review of the 2014 to 2019 Housing Element, a document reviewed by the state to ensure cities provide the appropriate number of housing units as determined by their regional housing needs assessment numbers, according to a staff report.

Under the new process implemented this year, the city would have its housing element reviewed within 60 days of submission as opposed to several months.

In other business, the council will vote on the approval of bids for construction projects, including one on Sunset Road near the Lost Coast Brewery expansion site.

Utilities will be brought up to standard, and roads will be resurfaced, Public Works Director Bruce Young previously said.

Staff recommend the council award the bid to Mercer-Fraser Company for about $717,300, according to a staff report. While reviewing the bids, staff discovered Mercer-Fraser was missing a signature on the bid, but determined the lack of signature on the addendum is an immaterial deviation.

If the council chooses not to waive the deviation, than RAO Construction Co., Inc. would be the lowest bidder, the report states.

Another project would include improvements to West Avenue.

Staff recommends the council approve a project that would enhance and improve pedestrian safety on West Avenue between Myrtle Avenue and Sixth Street.

Mercer-Fraser was the low bidder at $416,625.

If you go:

What: Eureka City Council meeting

Where: City Council chambers, 531 K St.

When: 6 p.m. Tuesday

Lorna Rodriguez can be reached at 441-0506 or Follow her on Twitter @LornaARodriguez.