Antioch Council approves grants to community groups, praises outgoing assistant city manager

Both Mayor Pro Tem Tamisha Torres-Walker and Councilwoman Monica Wilson were absent during the Tuesday night Feb. 28th council meeting. Video screenshot.

Torres-Walker absent again; Wilson also absent

Ogorchock calls for investigation into, termination of City’s PIO

By Allen D. Payton

The Antioch City Council, with Mayor Pro Tem Torres-Walker was absent for a second meeting in a row and District 4 Councilwoman Monica Wilson was also absent, approved about $50,000 in grants to community groups and supported pursuing an electric car sharing program. In addition, along with the city manager and city attorney, the council members offered their farewell remarks to Assistant City Manager Rosanna Bayon Moore who is leaving Antioch for her new position as Piedmont City Administrator.

City Clerk Ellie Householder was also absent and explained the reason by posting an announcement on her official Facebook page earlier in the day.

“Hello everyone. My beloved dog, Sheena, is very sick. And thus, I will not be at tonight’s City Council. Thank you for everyone’s kindness and compassion during this difficult time,” she wrote.

Ogorchock Calls for Investigation, City’s PIO to Be Let Go

During Council Committee Reports and Communications, District 3 Councilwoman Lori Ogorchock shared concerns about the City’s public information officer, Rolando Bonilla, and him sending out a press release with information falsely attributed to Police Chief Steve Ford. (See related article)

“I would like to ask for an investigation. Who wrote the letter and how it was presented to (City Manager) Con Johnson,” she said. “If he is not let go, he needs to be.”

2022-2023 Civic Enhancement Grant Program awards. Source: City of Antioch

Approves 2022-2023 Civic Enhancement Grant Program Awards

During the Consent Calendar portion of the meeting the council approved on a vote of 3-0 almost $49,715 in grants to nine community organizations from the 2022-2023 Civic Enhancement Grant Program out of a budget of $50,000. According to the staff report the program is designed “to support community events and improvement projects that originate with nonprofit organizations in Antioch. It is the City’s goal to assist nonprofit organizations by creating and implementing a grant program to fund civic events and enhancement projects in an objective and efficient manner. At their February 16, 2023 meeting, the Parks and Recreation Commission Parks and Recreation Commission voted to recommend that all applications be funded in full.”

The grants ranging in size from $2,500 to $10,000 were approved for Be Exceptional, Cancer Support Community, Delta Veterans Group, Loaves and Fishes of Contra Costa, Love Never Fails, Antioch Historical Society, Contra Costa Family Justice Alliance, Antioch Rotary Club and The Drama Factory.

Supports Pursuing Electric Car Share Program

Also, during the Consent Calendar, the council approved a resolution in support of a Clean Mobility Options Program Voucher Application in order to establish an Electric Vehicle Car Share program in Antioch.

“Why is this a Consent Calendar item?” asked resident Andrew Becker among other questions.

“One of the questions after reading this, who’s going to oversee this program,” Ogorchock asked. “We haven’t had a presentation on it. On the pricing…$35 a day. Who’s going to oversee the liability? Who’s going to oversee the charging stations?”

Richmond Community Foundation is taking the lead on applying for this if we get approval, today,” said Julie Haas-Wajdowicz, Environmental Resource Coordinator. “Phase II that’s where we will get the details. That’s why the staff presentation is vague. Ultimately…Richmond, they are one of the first jurisdictions to bring this online. It is a very expensive insurance coverage to ensure the city is not liable. NeoCar will be the one maintaining the vehicles and the charging stations.”

“Then, I will wait for Phase II,” Ogorchock said and then moved approval of the proposed resolution which passed 3-0.

Praises for Outgoing Assistant City Manager

During the meeting Thorpe spoke about Assistant City Manager Bayon Moore who starts her new position April  6, saying, “She’s been heavily involved in all the homeless efforts in the city.”

Speaking of the Executive Inn he said, “Rosanna has carried that on her shoulders as if it was her own child.”

“I wanted to acknowledge Rosanna for her hard work. We wouldn’t be having these discussions, tonight without her,” Thorpe continued. “We lost our Unhoused Resident Coordinator to another city…and it was Rosanna who was out there getting motel vouchers…” Thorpe continued. “It was Rosanna on the weekend out there talking with out unhoused residents. There are people because of Rosanna who have permanent housing, now.”

“I really want you to know, Rosanna, you’ve transformed people’s lives,” he continued. “I know it’s been a wild ride. I want you to know you’re appreciated, and we’ll really miss you. I know you’ll be back when we cut the ribbon for the Executive Inn.”

He then asked for “a round of applause for our outstanding assistant city manager” which the councilmembers, staff and audience members in attendance provided.

“We’ll probably do something for her, later,” he added.

At the close of the meeting others offered their accolades for and comments to Bayon Moore, as well.

“You really helped,” Barbanica shared. “It didn’t matter if I called you at 10 you took my call.”

“The thing I most admired about working with you, you were never intimidated by anyone. Thank you for everything…you’ve been phenomenal to work with. Good luck to you.”

“Thank you, Rosanna. I know you hate this part. I’m going to miss you,” Ogorchock said. “You are a huge asset to this city. You don’t have a clue how much of an asset you are to this city. We’re going to miss you very much.”

“I want to on behalf of the City, Rosanna has been a great partner,” said City Manager Con Johnson. “She’s tenacious in her focus. She’s a very strong leader. You’re going to make a great city administrator.”

“It was a pleasure working with you. I’m going to miss you. I look forward to all the great things you’re going to do for the City of Piedmont,” said City Attorney Thomas L. Smith.

Previously, when asked for comment about her time with the City and departure, Bayon Moore wrote, “I am grateful to the City for the experience these last two years in Antioch and the opportunity to work alongside dedicated staff who ensure public services are reliably delivered. More than anything, I have enjoyed our shared purpose endeavoring to meet community needs.”





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2022-2023 Civic Enhancement Grant Program awards

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