City Goals & Priorities

Goals and Priorities Workshop


The Petaluma City Council has a tradition of regularly establishing goals and priorities, often in conjunction with the annual budget process. Over the past three years, the Council has undergone a more robust process of requesting and receiving community feedback and input to establish a robust list of goals, objectives, and workplan items. This process has included multiple outreach opportunities for the community including online surveys, in-person workshops, and participation at regular City Council meetings.

Top 10 Priorities

Following the May 25th, 2020, murder of George Floyd in Minneapolis, race relations and police use of force policies have become a focus in communities across the country. To address requests from community members and start these conversations locally, the City hosted a community engagement and listening forum followed by community-led listening sessions. After hearing from and listening to the community, the City hired a professional facilitator and established an Ad Hoc Community Advisory Committee (AHCAC). The AHCAC’s purpose was to discuss race relations in Petaluma, make recommendations to the City Council to improve them, help bring the community together, identify opportunities for meaningful change, and promote inclusion in Petaluma. On April 4th, 2022, the City Council provided direction on the implementation of the City’s Council Priorities in response to the recommendations of the AHCAC. This top 10 goal is the implementation. The first milestone, Develop and Issue Independent Police Auditor (IPA) Request for Proposal (RFP), is anticipated to be completed by Quarter 1 of FY 2023. The draft RFP will be presented to City Council on September 12th.

On November 9, 2016, the Control, Regulate and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act, Proposition 64, became law, leading to recreational cannabis sales in California by January 2018. As a result of recreational legalization, local governments may not prohibit adults from growing, using, or transporting cannabis for personal use. Following recreational legalization, companies must be licensed by the local agency to grow, test, or sell cannabis within each jurisdiction. The City of Petaluma needs to adopt ordinances and regulations to allow for commercial use of cannabis within city limits. This project, the Adoption of Retail Cannabis Ordinance, is the process to allow commercial use of cannabis in Petaluma.

The first milestone, Review Regional Jurisdictions’ Regulations and Modify for Local Considerations, is anticipated to be completed by Quarter 1 of FY 2023.

The City Council’s approval of the Climate Emergency Framework on January 11, 2021 set a goal for the City of Petaluma to become carbon neutral by 2030.  Major sources of carbon emissions in the City of Petaluma are transportation and existing buildings.  Electrification and fuel switch to renewable sources for the transportation and housing sectors would significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions.  A citywide electrification plan will identify barriers and propose solutions for electrification of existing Petaluma buildings and infrastructure, including infrastructure upgrades needed to support electrification of buildings and vehicles.

The first milestone, Review Electrification Plans for Other Jurisdictions, is anticipated to be completed by Quarter 2 of FY 2023.

The need for eviction protection was underscored by the widespread employment disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.  The eviction moratorium enacted by the County of Sonoma during the pandemic is set to expire September 30, 2022.  This set of protections for tenants specific to the City of Petaluma includes legislation related to Just Cause, the Ellis Act, and updates to the City’s Mobile Home rental protection.  The tenant protection ordinance package is expected to be presented to the City Council for consideration on August 1, 2022.  

The first four milestones are all anticipated to be completed by Quarter 1 of FY 2023. 

  • Ellis Act / Just Cause: Review Legal Aid Exemplar, Sonoma County Just Cause Ordinance, State Law Rent Control Statute, State Law Authority and Preemption
  • Mobile Home Rent Control: Review Arbitrator’s Opinion and Council Suggestions/Communications
  • Mobile Home Rent Control: Research Recent Mobile Home Rent Control Challenges
  • Mobile Home Rent Control: Confer with Tenants’ Counsel

The Petaluma Fairgrounds is a 55-acre, multi-use property located in the heart of town. Through the years, this site has provided a place for fun, learning, special occasions, respite, and refuge during crises, as well as many lasting memories for Petalumans, County residents, and visitors. It is a truly unique place that is loved by so many. The City of Petaluma owns the Fairgrounds property and, for the past 50 years, has leased it to the 4th District Agricultural Association (4th DAA), a branch of the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA). The 4th DAA determines the Fairgrounds property uses, which include the five-day Sonoma-Marin Fair in June and other organizations the 4th DAA subleases to, such as a preschool, elementary school, race track, and event spaces. 

After multiple lease renewals, the final renewal will expire on December 31st, 2023. The goal, the Fairgrounds – Outreach Process, Recommendations, and Framework for Decision-making, describes the series of milestones on a path forward for the fair and property.

The first two milestones, Complete Property, Soil, and Building Assessments and Receive Lottery Selected Panel Recommendations, are anticipated to be completed by Quarter 1 of FY 2023.

The Public Safety Facilities Assessment will be used to inform future new construction and renovations to address inadequate police and fire facilities city wide. Fire Station 1 needs Seismic upgrades and Stations 1, 2, and 3 no longer meet operational needs for a diverse workforce with crew space lacking. The Police Station similarly is poorly configured to meet the needs of a modern police department with inadequate locker space, showers, meeting, and office space. This project will develop a road map and strategic plan to move our Public Safety facilities into the 21st century. 

Staff is finalizing a Professional Services Agreement with consultants to begin preparing a Public Safety Facilities/EOC Evaluation and Strategic Plan, with kickoff expected in September 2022. Operational and administrative analyses of the Fire and Police Departments are expected to be presented to the City Council in early Fall 2022 and will be used, along with existing facilities planning documents, to inform the development of the Plan. 

The first milestone, Complete the Public Safety Facilities/EOC Evaluation and Strategic Plan, is anticipated to be completed by Quarter 3 of FY 2023.

Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is defined in Title 7 of the US Code as “a sustainable approach to managing pests by combining biological, cultural, physical, and chemical tools in a way that minimizes economic, health, and environmental risks.”  A common feature of recent IPM Plan is to change practices to relegate chemical pest control to a last resort, with some plan prohibiting the use of synthetic pesticides altogether.  The process to develop an IPM Plan which would guide all pest control activities related to City facilities and operations is underway. Staff is working closely with consultants and a community working group of stakeholders to draft initial program details to present for feedback. The IPM Plan is expected to be presented to the City Council in Fall 2022.

The first two milestones, Complete Stakeholder Interviews and Site Analysis and Present Summary of Findings to Community Working Group and Staff for Review and Input, are anticipated to be completed by Quarter 2 of FY 2023.

Trees have multiple positive benefits related to providing wildlife habitat, sequestering carbon to help mitigate climate change, reducing the heat-island effect, and increasing property values through beautification.  Petaluma’s existing tree ordinance has not been updated to realize the increased benefit of enhanced tree protection.  The updated tree preservation ordinance would update internal processes and permitting related to tree removal, update provisions for tree maintenance, planting in the public right of way, and update standard provisions for all entitlements and land use permitting.  This legislation and policy update is expected to be considered by Council in Spring 2023.

The first milestone, Review Existing Regulations, Review of Draft Tree Technical Manual and ReLeaf, and Identify Case Studies, Best Practices, is anticipated to be completed by Quarter 1 of FY 2023.

Petaluma’s historic trestle is located along the southwest bank of the Turning Basin in downtown Petaluma.  While significant hurdles exist, the vision is to transform the structure which is currently in poor condition into a prized, iconic riverfront gathering place and active transportation hub.  Major milestones include environmental assessment, determining ownership/acquisition models, inviting the community to develop a vision for the site, design, securing funding for construction, and project implementation.  This will be a multi-year project.

The first two milestones, Reengage on Previous Studies/Plans/Designs and Commence Design of the Project to Make the Project Ready for Bids in FY24 or FY25, are anticipated to be completed by Quarter 1 of FY 2023.

The Safe Mobility and Community Connectivity | Safe Streets Goal is a city-wide initiative that strives to increase and provide safety for all users of our roadways. This project will provide Petaluma with a strategic map forward for Active Transportation.

The first three milestones, Memorialize Safe Streets Elements in Overall Vision (AT, Complete Streets, Calming, Accessibility, Trails, Sidewalks, etc.), Adopt Local Road Safety Plan, and Crosstown Connector Workshop, have been completed. The next milestone, Establish Criteria/Framework for Active Transportation Projects Selection, is in progress and is scheduled to be completed in Quarter 2 of Fiscal Year 2023.


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We developed the city’s Goals and Priorities with extensive community input and discussion. We held a workshop on April 6, 2019, and offered a survey, to gather the community’s ideas. After that workshop, we reviewed and collated the feedback. We presented a draft version of the City’s goals and priorities for the next two years. After discussion, the Council approved a final goals and priorities. These became the guideposts for our work.

Review the Original Goals & Priorities Booklet here.

Our environmental legacy


an economy that prospers


seating for deer creek

Spaces and places that inspire


FISCAL YEAR 2021 - 2023

In 2021 we held two workshops on April 26, 2021, and June 28, 2021, to get community input and feedback. We also reflected on what we added to the list. Much of our work changed because of the Covid-19 Pandemic. The City Council then finalized our workplan for the upcoming two years.

Review the 2021-2023 Workplan (Booklet form)
Review excel worksheet with all goals - complete, ongoing, and current

FISCAL YEAR 2019 - 2021

In February 2020, we updated our Goals and Priorities, right before COVID came into our lives. Needless to say, things changed.

Review the 2020 Update
Review completed work from 2019 - 2020 Workplan
Review ongoing work from 2019-2021 Workplan

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