Inter-Departmental Correspondence

Department of Public Works



July 23, 2010


August 10, 2010







Honorable Board of Supervisors


James C. Porter, Director of Public Works


Termination of the Local Emergency Declaration for the Slope Stabilization Improvements within the Landslide in the La Honda Area, San Mateo County – (Project No. R2E01 – F-36 [256])



Make a finding to terminate the local emergency declaration for constructing slope stabilization improvements within the landslide in the La Honda Area.



Your Board adopted Resolution Nos. 069258 and 069259 on February 12, 2008. Resolution No. 069258 declared the intent to form an assessment district to assist in the financing of soil stability improvements within the Scenic Drive landslide in La Honda. The work contemplated included reconstruction of the lower portion of Scenic Drive and work required to support the upper portion of Scenic Drive. Resolution No. 069259 approved the Engineer’s Report for the contemplated work and proposed assessments for each parcel within the assessment district, set the public hearing date for the formation of the assessment district, and directed the Director of Public Works to send all property owners within the proposed assessment district a notice of the public hearing and a ballot to indicate their support or opposition to being assessed for the cost of the improvements.


Your Board adopted Resolution Nos. 069359 and 069360 on April 22, 2008. Resolution No. 069359 authorized the Director of Public Works to form the La Honda Landslide Assessment District, levy assessments to finance the cost of constructing soil stability improvements and the reconstruction of the lower portion of Scenic Drive, and ordered the proposed improvements. Resolution No. 069360 found that an emergency existed that would not permit a delay resulting from a competitive solicitation for bids, that emergency repair work was necessary to respond to the emergency, and authorized the execution of a construction contract with Soil Engineering Construction, Inc. for the final design and construction of the improvements within the La Honda Landslide Assessment District to address the emergency without a competitive solicitation for bids.



Public Contract Code sections 22035 and 22050 allow for emergency contracting procedures, including the award of contracts without a formal bidding process, upon a 4/5 vote of the Board. The Board declared that a local emergency existed in the Scenic Drive landslide area and has been required to review the emergency action at subsequent regularly scheduled meetings consistent with the Code requirements until the action is terminated, and to determine by a 4/5 vote whether there is a need to continue the action.


Public Contract Code Section 22050 and California Government Code Section 8630(d) state that the governing body shall proclaim the termination of the local emergency at the earliest possible date that conditions warrant. Construction of the slope stabilization improvements was completed on November 13, 2009 and the Notice of Completion was filed on February 16, 2010. There is no need for the Board to continue the declaration of the local emergency.


The work contemplated by the Engineer’s Report included the slope stabilization improvements and the reconstruction of the lower portion of Scenic Drive. The reconstruction of Scenic Drive could not be performed until the slope stabilization work had been completed. The Department intends to retain a contractor to reconstruct the lower portion of Scenic Drive through the competitive bid process once the plans and specifications have been completed. However, soil settlement has been detected between the Upper Scenic Drive Retaining Wall and the easterly end of a portion of lower Scenic Drive. The Department of Public Works (Department) is in the process of evaluating this area to determine the extent of the settlement before lower Scenic Drive can be recommended for reconstruction.


Approval of this action contributes to the Shared Vision 2025 outcome of a Healthy Community by taking a necessary step in the process to continue to complete the improvements included in the soil stability improvements within the Scenic Drive landslide, which will provide a safer neighborhood for residents in the La Honda area.



The termination of the state of emergency has no impact on the General Fund.