REDWOOD CITY, California - Last night the City Council voted to approve the Final Docktown Plan
that outlines relocation assistance options for Docktown Marina residents. Ending residential uses at Docktown Marina is required in order for the City to meet its legal obligation to allow full public access to the land on which the marina is located. The process of implementing the Docktown Plan will begin in early 2017.
"Over the last year, the City has worked diligently to assess how best to bring the Marina into compliance with State law, while being sensitive to the needs of residents," said Redwood City Mayor John D. Seybert. "While we are hopeful that some residents may be able to move to the Municipal Marina operated by the Port of Redwood City, we need to plan now for the relocation of tenants. We know that implementing the Docktown Plan will be challenging, but we will work with tenants to help their transition to new housing."
The Final Docktown Plan Plan was adopted after the Council considered over 70 comments submitted by the public in writing and at a community meeting held in November, as well as over two hours of public testimony during the December 12 Council meeting. While relocation benefits are not required under State law, the City has outlined in the Final Docktown Plan a process for evaluating the needs of Docktown residents and providing reasonable relocation assistance, consistent with the City's goals of equity and providing affordable housing assistance. The final plan includes information regarding the following:
- Relocation assistance program eligibility criteria;
- Relocation advisory services, such as information on marina and land-based housing options;
- Financial assistance, such as payment of moving and other associated relocation costs;
- Opportunities to relocate Docktown dwellings to other marinas;
- Offers to purchase Docktown dwellings based on the structure's fair market value, in cases where a dwelling cannot be moved to another location;
- Opportunities for Docktown tenants to seek out their own property appraisals;
- Enhanced benefits for individuals who are disabled, low income, seniors, or veterans; and
- An appeals process should Docktown tenants disagree with the City's application of benefits provided under the plan.
In approving the plan, councilmembers agreed with a staff recommendation to cease pursuit of future legislation that would extend Docktown residential use.The City had previously explored several creative approaches, including land swaps and the permitting of a new marina, as well as special State legislation. Afterextending considerable effort and resources to craft legislation that would have provided a 15-year timeframe for relocation,a proposal by the City did not receive the necessary support from the community.
Development of a Docktown Plan, and its adoption by December 31, 2016, was required under the terms of a settlement agreement to resolve outstanding issues related to a lawsuit filed against the City over residential uses at the Docktown Marina. The process of implementing the Final Docktown Plan will begin in early 2017. City officials expect that implementing the plan will take some time, and the City's goal is to provide community members with a reasonable timeframe to transition.