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Manteca doubling number of code enforcement officers
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The City of Manteca is getting closer to having two code enforcement officers.

The city is in the final process of interviewing for the new position that is being funded 100 percent from Manteca Redevelopment Agency money.

Since one of the redevelopment agency’s primary missions is to fight blight, paying the salary and benefits of a code enforcement officer is a perfect fit. It also doesn’t impact the general fund that is currently in deficit mode.

The idea behind the second code enforcement officer when it was placed in last year’s RDA budget was for the city to start taking a more pro-active approach to code enforcement issues in neighborhoods as well as business districts.

The $7,500 BMX question
How does a $2,400 insurance policy tab end up equaling $7,500?

It is a question several readers asked following the BMX track snafu regarding putting insurance in place to allow the Spreckels Recreation Park improvement to open.

Two weeks ago, staff told the Manteca City Council the hang up was $2,400 for an insurance policy to cover the gap in the time the course was under the umbrella of an American Bicycle Association policy held by Anderson 209 BMX. The city itself cannot directly provide insurance since it is not maintaining the course.

Staff came up with the idea to simply provide Anderson 209 with $2,400 as “payment” for maintenance work the group is performing on the track that would have cost the city $28,000 a year to do itself. The non-profit group has also assisted in constructing the track.

Other issues have popped up related to insurance that could incur additional expenses on the part of Anderson 209. John Anderson, the driving force behind the BMX team effort didn’t think it was appropriate to have his group pick up the cost of insurance for the times when the general public is using the complex on top of them doing all of the maintenance work as required by ABA standards.

The actual $1 million insurance policy in question carries a $2,441 a year premium. As municipal staff explains it, the additional money that swelled the city payment to $7,500 is to cover unforeseen insurance-related costs.

That amount – the $7,500 – could drop substantially in coming years as the track establishes a record of operation. In other words, if all goes well, and Anderson 209 is still on board come Sept. 1, 2011, the city’s contribution to the non-profit for insuring the complex will probably drop significantly.

Still, as Assistant City Manager Karen McLaughlin points out, the city is receiving a deal spending just over a quarter of what it would do out of pocket to have the course maintained.

McLaughlin noted Anderson 209 can do with the money as they so please as long as insurance issues are covered.

Mosque going near Baptist church
The mosque proposed for South Union Road will be located near the Sequoia Heights Baptist Church.

The $1 million venture will give Muslims a permanent home.

They’ve had a presence with a prayer center for more than a decade.