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Meeting Date:     March 28, 2000

 Subject/Title:      Contract services for City Roadways and Parks Maintenance

 Submitted by:     Barry Margesson, Park Services Manager

 Approved by:      Jon Elam, City Manager


Authorize the City Manager to negotiate and execute contracts with MCE Corporation and Valley Sweeping & Landscape Service for citywide landscape services.


On_____,  1999 City Council authorized Staff to proceed with selection of a contractor to provide Citywide Park and Roadway Landscape Maintenance services on a professional service contract basis.


By 2004 the total Park and Roadway acreage the City will be responsible for maintaining will increase to 140 acres from the current 37 acres.  Given the escalating costs for staffing and equipping an in-house City maintenance operation, Council directed Staff to develop a professional service contract with a provider for these services.  The Park and Recreation Department contracted with Tom Hanson, the principal of Hanson Associates, a management and technology consulting company.  Tom Hanson developed a program to organize the performance of routine custodial maintenance functions for landscaped areas in the City.

 The program bases the maintenance contract on a standards based list of performance criteria.  User standards were developed for Park and Roadway elements such as turf, playgrounds, and tennis courts.  Turf, for example should always be uniformly green, without weeds, and free of litter.  The contractor’s performance and payment is measured on how well they meet these standards.

  The qualification and selection process emphasized the contractor’s ability to measure and report actual work performed along with specific costs of the work.  Through this approach, the City is able to provide excellent cost control.  At each site, actual costs will be compared to achievement of performance standards.  Park and Recreation staff will be used primarily to inspect the contractor’s work, and to perform certain cost-effective functions, such as litter control, sports field set-up, and restroom maintenance.  Finally, the City maintains a high level of accountability to the community through the contractor maintenance program.  Each LL&D and the Citywide Park Maintenance Assessment District will be reported by cost of maintenance effort, and quality of the maintenance product. 

 Following their development, user based standards were reviewed by the Brentwood Area Neighborhood Committees, and finally by City Council.  After Council’s approval of the standards, 250 RFQs were mailed to landscape providers.

 From this group, fifteen responsive qualification statements were received.  These candidates qualifications were evaluated according to a range of criteria including: stability and capability, communications and reporting capability, staff or subcontractor qualifications, range of services provided, and local hiring and subcontracting plan.  Six contractors were then selected for interviews, and asked to submit references. Out of this group our Staff panel identified two finalists for the full services contract: MCE Corporation and Rubicon Programs Incorporated.  Having two exceptionally qualified finalists put the City in an excellent position to select a first-rate maintenance provider. 

 Each company demonstrated outstanding references and long term customer relationships. Each provided clients with effective and responsive work programs.  Additionally, both providers committed to a local recruiting plan with a goal of twenty-five percent local hires.  A local custodial and parking lot sweeping company, Valley Sweeping & Landscape Service, was included as a finalist to provide specialty maintenance functions. 

 After visiting work sites and headquarters of the two finalists, Staff determined that MCE Corporation’s extensive system of cost accounting and work planning gave it a clear edge over the competition.   MCE’s administrative reporting includes detailed budget reports by site, and comparisons of actual versus budgeted work.  MCE has demonstrated a solid, long lasting contractual relationship with the cities of Dublin, West Hollywood, and Windsor.  They have also committed to an intensive recruitment plan for local subcontractors.  Valley Sweeping & Landscape Service also remains a finalist. 

 Having identified the most qualified companies to provide landscape maintenance services for the City of Brentwood, the next step will be to negotiate a long-term contract with MCE and Valley Sweeping for these services. The proposal request cited an initial contract period of one year, followed by two, 3 -year renewal periods. The negotiations will take place within the fiscal restraints of revenue provided by the Citywide Park Maintenance Assessment District, the various Landscape and Lighting Districts, and the General Fund.  The budgeted amount of $10,000 per acre of City landscape would be apportioned roughly as follows:

            Contract Landscape Maintenance            $  6,000

            City staff: Inspection / Support functions      2,000

            Renovation of landscape areas        2,000                 Total                        $10,000

Our goal is for the City Manager and Staff to negotiate and execute a contract with MCE and Valley Sweeping with a start date of June 1, 2000.  A letter of intent to retain will be sent to both companies following Council approval of this item.  Exhibit A

Exhibit ACity of Brentwood Park Maintenance Standards

Visitors to City of Brentwood parks will find the conditions described in the standards below:


All turf areas will support their designed uses – informal play, sports, picnics and other park activities. Turf will be healthy with an even surface and uniform, deep green color. Turf will not exhibit bare spots and will be weed- and pest-free.

Flower Beds

Bedding areas will contain healthy, attractive plants that lend variety, color and interest to the landscape. These areas will be litter-, weed- and pest-free. Dead heads, blank spots, and other defects will not detract from the decorative nature of the plantings. Plantings will be rotated seasonally in areas of high use or high visibility and semi-annually in low use, low visibility areas.

Shrub Beds, Hedges and Ground Cover

Shrub beds, ground covers and hedges will contain healthy, attractive plants that lend variety and interest to the landscape. These areas will be litter-, weed- and pest-free. Beds, ground covers and hedges will be maintained to provide secondary functions such as barriers, animal habitat or dust and erosion control. All shrubs, ground covers and hedges will be trimmed, pruned or otherwise maintained to achieve designed form.


Trees will provide shade, wind breaks, sound attenuation and otherwise enhance the park setting. Trees will conform to the general shape and height of the species; significantly deformed specimens will be removed. Trees will not exhibit broken or cracked limbs or other structural damage. Trees will be free of debilitating pests or other health problems. Tree limbs will be at a safe height for the uses anticipated in the vicinity.


Restrooms will be available to park users at community parks and other designated facilities. Restrooms will function properly, be well stocked, clean and odor-free. These facilities will comply with Contra Costa Health Department standards.

 Paved Surfaces

Paved surfaces may include sports courts, pathways, parking lots and other areas topped with asphalt or concrete. These areas will have smooth surfaces, not exhibit raveling, cracking, potholes or other significant defects. These surfaces will meet designed use specifications, have proper signs and, where night use is authorized, be adequately lighted. Pathways, parking lots and other paved areas will be free of debris, litter and graffiti. (Standards for specific use areas may be found below.)

Unpaved Surfaces

Unpaved surfaces may include sports facilities, pathways, parking areas or other areas covered with porous paving materials. These will be properly compacted, level and without holes or washouts. These surfaces will meet designed use specifications, have proper signs and, where night use is authorized, be adequately lighted. All unpaved surfaces will be free of weeds, debris, litter and graffiti. (Standards for specific use areas may be found below.)


Play equipment and structures will be clean, safe and functional. All installed equipment and surfaces will meet the Consumer Product Safety Council’s guidelines. A certified playground apparatus inspector will conduct inspections.

 Open Spaces or Natural Areas

Areas intended for nature study or open space enjoyment will be retained in their natural states and managed for fire protection, noxious weeds and erosion control as appropriate for the intended use and natural surroundings.

 Water Features

Water features will be clean and debris-free. Banks will be stable and appropriate plants and trees will enhance the setting. Appropriate warning signs will be located at key points for visitor safety. Rails, fencing or barriers will be installed and maintained where needed to promote safe use.

Picnic Shelters and Group Areas

Structures will be structurally sound, litter- and graffiti-free. Floors will be clean and free of food and other debris. Picnic tables benches and barbecues will be clean, in good repair and ready for use. Trashcans will be covered and will accept items for disposal.

 Sports fields, infields, dugouts

Turf, in addition to meeting the general use standards, will be maintained at proper playing height, grade differentials between the infield surface and field turf will be eliminated and holes located and filled. Field markings, bases, goals, goal posts, lighting where installed and scoreboards will be ready for scheduled sports events. The costs of these additional maintenance functions will be passed through to organized user groups through scheduling or other fees.

 Drinking fountains

Fountains will be clean and fully functional. Water flow will reach the designed height for user convenience and the bowel will drain properly.


Fences will be installed where needed to protect park property, restrict access to hazardous areas, augment user safety or protect adjoining properties. All fences will be free from litter and graffiti. Wooden fences will be plumb, sturdy, have no missing boards and, where needed, will be painted or stained on a regular schedule. Metal or wire fabric fencing poles will be straight and fabric taut and with holes or gaps. All gates will function as designed.

Support Structures and On-site Storage

Outbuildings, pump houses and other support structures will be clean, graffiti- and litter-free, screened from view and will be locked when not in use. On-site storage will be kept to the minimum necessary to promote effective use and maintenance of the park. All on-site storage will be screened from view and properly secured. The location of on-site storage will be as far as possible from main use areas.

 Concession Stands

Concession stand structures will be clean, graffiti- and litter-free. Food handling areas will comply with county Health Department standards at all times. Buildings will be structurally sound, all doors windows and serving areas will function as designed. The buildings will be properly secured when not in use.

 Tennis and Basketball Courts

In addition to meeting standards for paved surfaces, court amenities will be in good repair and ready for use. Nets will be set at correct playing height and will be free of tears or holes. Backboards, rims and nets will be in good repair. Court surfaces will be free of leaves, grit and other debris. Court surface markings will be well defined.

 Other Amenities Parks will contain a wide range of amenities from bike racks and flagpoles to public art. All park elements will be clean, structurally sound and ready for the designed use and enjoyment of park users. 

Accessibility Parks are intended for use by all Brentwood residents. All City parks will meet the requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Irrigation Systems Irrigation systems will deliver optimum water to each plant type at the lowest cost with maximum resource conservation. Water will be delivered during non-use hours. All systems will comply with State and local laws regarding backflow prevention and protection of the public water system.  

City Administration
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Brentwood, CA 94513
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